Lou Sanner, Anne Eglash, Hannah Keevil, James Shropshire and Patrick McKenna work in the Department of Family Medicine at the University of Wisconsin. They weren't working today, they were out in Madison handing out sick notes for striking teachers.
"What employers have a right to know is if the patient was assessed by a duly licensed physician about time off of work," Sanner said. "Employers don't have a right to know the nature of that conversation or the nature of that illness. So it's as valid as every other work note that I've written for the last 30 years."
I think it would be hilarious if everyone going to a protest wrote "No new taxes" or "T.E.A." or another short message on the palm of their hand. You can do this along with any other sign you want to bring.
First, I think this would be an impressive sight if enough people did it.
Second, I get tired of hearing how stupid Sarah Palin is. If she is so stupid, why does everyone (from the media to talk show hosts/comedians to the President of the U.S.) respond to her? Even if you don't agree with her, this would be a sly wink (Sarah style) at the irony of those who claim she is irrelevant while they obsess on everything she does.
Maybe they wanted a new party whip.
"There are remuneration packages that will no longer be tolerated because they bear no relationship to merit," Sarkozy said, calling it "morally indefensible" when companies that "contribute to destroying jobs and wealth also earn a lot of money."
"There are remuneration packages that will no longer be tolerated because they bear no relationship to merit,"
Sarkozy Mary Beth said, calling it "morally indefensible" when companies congressmen and senators that "contribute to destroying jobs and wealth also earn a lot of money."
I was reviewing a website and saw something that really irritated me. Up in the righthand corner of the online store's site was "no sales tax".
It seems like false advertising to me. Yes, the store won't charge you sales tax if your purchase is going to another state but you are still required by your state to pay the tax when you file your income taxes. Implying that you are not responsible for this seems like shady business practices to me. If they are willing to encourage you to cheat the government out of the taxes you owe* then why would you think that the store/company wouldn't cheat you when/if they could?
I think we (me!) are taxed too much but disagreeing with it doesn't mean we shouldn't pay it. It's better to elect politicians that will decrease the size of the government and its spending.
A fellow cruise ship passenger on a shore excursion in Cozumel.
He also had "commie" tattooed across his belly.
The problem isn't that the President wants to talk to school children, other U.S. Presidents have done that before. It's that he doesn't seem to have ever left campaign mode. If most of his speeches seem aimed to persuade rather than inspire, there isn't much reason for parents to believe this one will be different.
From a comment on a MSNBC: First Read post about Obama's AARP town hall meetings:
Make sure to show up at any of these klan (oops) I mean town hall meetings where the lies from the right will be flying faster than the shuttle....
Because people asking questions makes them racists. Or something.
If you see anyone that appears to be breaking into my house, please call the police. If it is a criminal that is thwarted from stealing my property, I will be forever grateful to you.
If, on the other hand, it is I or my children, I will still be very grateful that I have neighbors who care enough about me and the neighborhood to be concerned about suspicious behavior.
If the police arrive while I'm still stressed from whatever problem caused me to have to break into my own house, I'll be happy to know that their response time is to good. The more thorough they are in making sure that I or my children belong in this home and that no one is here that doesn't belong, the more secure I will feel in their ability to do their job thoughtfully and well.
Only a pompous ass would not understand that if you're in your home you know: that you belong there, whether anyone else is there, and whether there are any weapons (and whether or not you might have plans to use them). The police officer only knows that a neighbor was concerned that someone might have been trying to enter the property illegally. When you have the advantage of more information, it is your duty to let the officer know what you know.
Unless you're friends with the President.
My younger son (15) got a couple-hour break from school to attend the tax day protest in downtown Louisville with me.
All of these photos were taken at the Louisville Tea Party on April 15, 2009 between 10:45 and 11:30. If anyone has information about what happened later, please leave a comment and use the URL field of the comment form to leave a link if you have posted pictures online.
There was a good sized crowd, especially considering it was only about 45 degrees, overcast, and in the middle of a work day.
Diverse too...by that I mean there were people wearing both (Louisville) Cardinal red and (UK) Wildcat blue.
There was singing and flag waving.
The media seems to be paying more attention now...
I mean the news vans, not the guy who appears to be a citizen journalist doing an interview with his digital camera. Bloggers have been paying attention all along.
I think the somewhat dazed looking man on the left is a reporter. I saw him interviewing a woman who came to the tea party with a child in a stroller. He was taking notes in his notepad while another man was taking pictures.
This is making the rounds in emails and has been posted several places. I do not know who is the original author.
Today on my way to lunch I passed a homeless guy with a sign that read “Vote Obama, I need the money.” I laughed.
Once in the restaurant my server had on a “Obama 08″ tie, again I laughed as he had given away his political preference — just imagine the coincidence.
When the bill came I decided not to tip the server and explained to him that I was exploring the redistribution of wealth concept. He stood there in disbelief while I told him that I was going to redistribute his tip to someone who I deemed more in need–the homeless guy outside. The server angrily stormed from my sight.
I went outside, gave the homeless guy $10 and told him to thank the server inside as I’ve decided he could use the money more. The homeless guy was grateful.
At the end of my rather unscientific redistribution experiment I realized the homeless guy was grateful for the money he did not earn, but the waiter was pretty angry that I gave away the money he did earn even though the actual recipient deserved money more.
I guess redistribution of wealth is an easier thing to swallow in concept than in practical application.
I would argue that while the homeless guy may have needed the money more, he didn't deserve it more.
When you give to someone in need, that is charity and has nothing to do with fairness. When someone receives what he has earned, that's fairness.
If you disagree, please see this post to make a donation and spread your wealth around.
But it's all good, right?
For extra fun, try to count the number of times that Biden blinks during the interview. This source seems to think that a high blink rate is a sign of lying. Could be that he was just bothered by the interviewer shining a bright light into areas the campaign wants to keep in the dark.
When McCain mentioned the t-shirts, the only two reasons that I can think of that Obama would not make a statement that he is disgusted by them is that:
1. He is a coward. He is afraid of alienating the rotted out remnants of human beings that wear this garbage.
2. On some level, he agrees with them. A woman has no greater significance than her genitals.
I had really thought that the best response would have been for Michelle Obama to make a statement of disgust over the shirts and the behaviour of the wearers. Who would wear something like that? Especially when they had to know it was likely she would have had one of her children with her.
Picture below the fold.
Photo from Wake Up America
Last night I was flipping through the TV channels and there was some entertainment/news show on. It was showing Katie Couric standing in a hallway talking to Sarah Palin. KC was asking what newspapers the governor reads.
I know Couricasaurus is getting old, but seriously, does that question belong in this century? While there are some reasons to subscribe to dead-tree papers, don't most people get news online? Links from blogs and Google news (and other aggregators) and alerts of topics of interest let me follow stories rather than just whatever one or two papers thinks is worth letting me know about.
by Scott Ott for ScrappleFace
(2008-09-28) — Sen. John McCain said reluctant Republicans would sign on to a $700 billion federal bailout of “Big Finance”, as soon as Democrats agree “to require criminally-negligent Wall Street CEOs and their enablers in Congress to perform a videotaped and broadcast perp walk, of not less than 10 yards per million dollars squandered.”
You know you would pay to see that...and buy the DVDs and T-shirts....maybe a coffeetable book with photos. Begin in nice business attire, surrounded by family and all the good things that came with their lifestyle. Follow it by prison jumpsuit attire, new "roomies", and a graphic that represents how much tax payer money they were responsible for squandering.
Turn it into a soap opera reality TV show and I bet that there would be a rapid increase in financial crisis experts.
Sergeant...um...Jopek's family had asked Obama not to wear the bracelet with their son's name on it.
The soldier's father seems to support the war in Iraq and doesn't want his son's death to be made into a campaign issue. The comments following the post about this differ on whether the mother doesn't want a connection to the military to hurt Obama's campaign or whether she is afraid that strongly insisting he not wear the bracelet could hurt the campaign.
My thoughts are that if he can't remember the young man's name after wearing it on his wrist for several months, he should have known the name on it and if any member of the family asked that it not be used as a campaign prop, that should have been honored.
One last thing about the bracelet. I have a bracelet too. I haven't worn it for over 30 years but I don't need to look at it to remember the name on it. I never knew the soldier (at the time he was listed as MIA) or his family, but my thoughts were with him every day.
"I have a bracelet too!"
Also, why does Obama keep calling McCain by his first name? It seems so rude.
The Obama campaign tried to smear Governor Palin by accusing her of trying to ban books when she was mayor of Wasilla. They must have thought she had amazing foresight since some of the books hadn't yet been published when this was supposed to have occured.
Reports of other pages that have disappeared from Obama's site after getting critical attention:
- Comparing Obama supporters and Hillary supporters a field slaves and house slaves
- an anti-semitism page that was up for about three months before being deleted.
- he's so used to seeing the dead vote in Chicago, it didn't seem odd that the men and women that Memorial Day honors would be in the audience.
- criticism of the surge removed from his site before the trip to Iraq
- an endorsement from Wright has also gone missing.
Poo and pee dominated a public hearing Monday on a new law that prohibits people from carrying certain items if they intend to use them for nefarious purposes.
...Two of the most frequently used examples of a noxious substance are a bucket of urine and a "feces bomb."
...Police have to prove that people carrying such items intend to use them to block public access or emergency equipment or to thwart crowd control measures.
Denver homeless are going to be given tickets to the movies, the zoo, museums, and other cultural events. Big screen TVs are being donated to shelters, which will have extended hours during the convention.
There is also going to be a voter registration drive at the shelters but if they want the homeless to be more involved in the political process, why are they trying to hide them during the convention?
Because the level of science education and public knowledge in the U.S. isn't mocked enough (and often with good cause), "Jeff Peckman, who is proposing the creation of an Extraterrestrial Affairs Commission in the Mile High City, is planning a news conference during the DNC to talk about space aliens and the 'technologies that they appear willing to offer'."
I think the most idiotic part of the Denver DNC is the catering rules.
Thousands of under-fed attendeess being confronted by poo-throwing protesters...this can only end in tears. And angry, violent attacks.
My only hope is that they have 24-hour streaming webcams set up all over the city.
Obama came under fire by conservative groups earlier this week, after he said that more Americans should learn a foreign language.
G.W. Bush can. (Spanish)
I wish just one reporter would point that out to Obama when he's talking about the value of a second language.
Yesterday Phil Gramm called us a nation of whiners. He later clarified it by saying our leaders are the whiners.
There are plenty of people who try to solve problems rather than complain about them but the ones who claim to be victims and expect someone else to fix things for them are more vocal and will lead anyone to think that we're all whiners.
Although she has been a strong supporter of gun control in the past, urging Congress to “buck the gun lobby” as first lady, Mrs. Clinton said, “Americans who believe in the Second Amendment believe it’s a constitutional right...
Is this some kind of riddle? - When would a right, listed in the Bill of Rights, not be a right?
Although the above quote was what caught my attention, the article was about Obama saying that small-town Pennsylvania voters, bitter over their economic circumstances, “cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them” as a way to explain their frustrations.
His explanation was, "I didn’t say it as well as I should have." I take this to mean saying what he was really thinking.
He seems to me to be a person who truly cannot understand why someone wouldn't like him or wouldn't agree with him and sees disagreement as a sign of a character flaw in others.
Researchers at Harvard say that publicly voiced doubts about the U.S. occupation of Iraq have a measurable "emboldenment effect" on insurgents there.
I'm not going to question the patriotism of the politicians who take any opportunity they can to be negative, but I think it's pretty clear that their primary allegiance is to their own egos.
...Obama's would have done it. He began by saying that, contrary to what he told us the other day, he did "hear him (Wright) make remarks that could be considered controversial while I sat in church". The rest seemed as though it could have been divided up into two separate speeches for two different audiences. Perhaps in pre-Internet days it would have been and neither would have been the wiser.
While I was out running errands today I heard a discussion on NPR about whether we should have President's Day or celebrate the birthdays of Washington and Lincoln separately.
What I thought was interesting was that everyone I heard comment on this pretty much agreed that both Washington and Lincoln were superior presidents. Some went on to point out that not all presidents were that good.
Maybe it's just a conditioned reflex I have from listening to too much public radio but I got the feeling that at least some of the commenters were talking about our current president when they were talking about some of them not deserving a day of honor.
I wonder how many of those commenters realize that many people detested Lincoln during his presidency. I'm not saying that Bush is on par with Lincoln but I do think that it is possible he will be appreciated more in the future than he is now.
Florida and Michigan are planning early primaries. Because of this, six of the Democratic candidates have pledged not to campaign in those states.
Who knew it was so easy to keep politicians out of your state?
Actress Cameron Diaz appears to have committed a major fashion faux pas in Peru. The voice of Princess Fiona in the animated "Shrek" films may have inadvertently offended Peruvians who suffered decades of violence from a Maoist guerrilla insurgency by touring here Friday with a bag emblazoned with one of Mao Zedong's favorite political slogans.
While explored the Inca city of Machu Picchu high in Peru's Andes, Diaz wore over her shoulder an olive green messenger bag emblazoned with a red star and the words "Serve the People" printed in Chinese on the flap, perhaps Chinese Communist leader Mao's most famous political slogan.
While the bags are marketed as trendy fashion accessories in some world capitals, the phrase has particular resonance in Peru, where the Maoist Shining Path insurgency brought Peru to edge of chaos in the 1980s and early 1990s with a campaign of massacres, assassinations and bombings.
Nearly 70,000 people were killed during the insurgency.
If it weren't for the fact that so many people suffered and died because of communism, the irony of a communist slogan as part of fashion would be funny.
I would have said he is projecting.
Carter was quoted Saturday as saying "I think as far as the adverse impact on the nation around the world, this administration has been the worst in history."
I would rank Carter's presidency as the worst during my lifetime. He's even worse (if that's possible) as an ex-president.
Some of the comments people have made to this say that if Fred Thompson hasn't announced an intention to run for president by now, he shouldn't run at all.
Fred Thompson isn't late, people, the others are too early.
* January 14th, 2008
I like to think that I base my voting decisions on the issues rather than political ads but this ad for Billy Harper (R) has made me want to vote for anyone but him. (It's the woman singing - about 14 seconds into the ad - that has me clicking the mute button.)
FIFTEEN British sailors and marines arrested by Iran’s Revolutionary Guards off the coast of Iraq may be charged with spying.
A website run by associates of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the Iranian president, reported last night that the Britons would be put before a court and indicted.
Referring to them as “insurgents”, the site concluded: “If it is proven that they deliberately entered Iranian territory, they will be charged with espionage. If that is proven, they can expect a very serious penalty since according to Iranian law, espionage is one of the most serious offences.”
If they are considered "insurgents", does this the sailors and marines will have the full support of the media? Or is that only if you're an "insurgent" that's trying to kill Americans?
Arizona's minimum wage was raised from $5.15 to $6.75 per hour last month.
Some Valley employers, especially those in the food industry, say payroll budgets have risen so much that they're cutting hours, instituting hiring freezes and laying off employees. And teens are among the first workers to go.
Companies maintain the new wage was raised to $6.75 per hour from $5.15 per hour to help the breadwinners in working-poor families. Teens typically have other means of support.
A small percentage of workers have benefited but the teens who are trying to save money for college and gain work experience are going to find this harder to do. (I don't even want to think about what they're going to find to do to occupy their after-school time now.)
It seems to me that this may create more older minimum wage workers in the future.
Or to put it more politely, let's say it's an example of the Law of Unintended Consequences - Once a Dream Fuel, Palm Oil May Be an Eco-Nightmare
Just a few years ago, politicians and environmental groups in the Netherlands were thrilled by the early and rapid adoption of “sustainable energy,” achieved in part by coaxing electrical plants to use biofuel — in particular, palm oil from Southeast Asia.
Spurred by government subsidies, energy companies became so enthusiastic that they designed generators that ran exclusively on the oil, which in theory would be cleaner than fossil fuels like coal because it is derived from plants.
But last year, when scientists studied practices at palm plantations in Indonesia and Malaysia, this green fairy tale began to look more like an environmental nightmare.
Rising demand for palm oil in Europe brought about the clearing of huge tracts of Southeast Asian rainforest and the overuse of chemical fertilizer there.
Worse still, the scientists said, space for the expanding palm plantations was often created by draining and burning peatland, which sent huge amounts of carbon emissions into the atmosphere.
This morning Right Wing News listed the 40 Most Obnoxious Quotes Of 2006. I left a comment about #28 - "It seems to me like 19 amateurs with box cutters taking over four commercial airliners and hitting 75% of their targets, that feels like a conspiracy theory. It raises a lot of questions." -- Charlie Sheen I said that I would like to see a showdown between Sheen and Danny Bonaduce. I already have an idea how it would go from watching this video of Bonaduce and John Conner.
According to a comment I read about the video, the "unclassified" information that Conner mentions (a plan to commit a terrorist act in the U.S. and blame it on another country) was from the Kennedy administration. I haven't varified it but I would assume that a change from classified to unclassified would take at least 10 years so it wouldn't be anything from the current administration. Not that we should let facts get in the way of the "truth".
I found these in my grandmother's attic when I was (much) younger. Unfortunately they had already been folded so there are creases and small tears in them. I thought they were still worth sharing.
The Louisville Courier-Journal
The Louisville Times
Other bits from inside the papers-
Goebbels turned out to be wrong then but his quotation is worth thinking about now.
I would like to see some of the newspapers from the days before the attack on Pearl Harbor. Judging by this letter to the editor, The Louisville Times appears to have been supporting neutrality in the war. What a difference a day makes.
No line, no waiting. They did ask for my ID - clearly an attempt to disenfranchise short, blonde women. They've asked for an ID everytime I've voted for as long as I can remember and I've always been short (may not have always been blonde, though). Then again, they ask my husband for an ID too and he's tall and has dark hair. I may have to rethink my conspiracy theory here...could it be that checking ID is just a way to make sure that we are who we say and are entitled to vote?
Newsweek is already pointing the finger at John Kerry in the event that the Democrats don't do as well as they had expected. This must be because voters are stupid and would fail to vote for Democrats running in state and local elections because of what Kerry said. It certainly couldn't have anything to do with the party platform. I haven't been thrilled with the Republicans lately but I also haven't seen the Democratic party offering anything better.
If the Republicans maintain control of the House and Senate, it may be a case of "better the devil you know". I also think that any scandals or inappropriate behavior will affect the chances of candidates that weren't directly involved. I know there are plenty of crossover voters but I also think that many people remain true to their parties even when they become disenchanted with the party's politicians as a whole. My candidate is good, I just wish those people in the other states would elect someone better than they have.
As for Kerry's "botched joke", if that's what he wants to call it, fine. But wouldn't most people who said something like that by mistake try to clear it up immediately? As soon as he heard the gasps from some of the audience he should have realized there was a problem, explained what he meant to say and added that maybe he should stick to politics and leave the humor to ________ (insert the name of any left-leaning comedian.) Unfortunately, the ability to mock himself or admit to mistakes is not something he seems to be able to do. It's unfortunate for Democratic candidates too, not because I think that people will assume their local politicians agree with his original statement but because they had to waste time speaking against it rather than talking about their ideas and plans (assuming they have any).
It's been years (okay, a couple of decades) since I've been to a concert. I expect to be entertained, not lectured to about politics (especially considering the cost of tickets).
“This is not some wedge issue; this is the soul of America,’’ said Representative Diana DeGette, Democrat of Colorado, who sponsored the bill Mr. Bush vetoed. “And this is a colossal mistake on the part of the president.’’
It was not a mistake because it was a wedge issue. This bill did more to create talking points for future elections than it would have done to promote embryonic stem cell research.
This is why you heard that researchers are leaving the country. (A few have but lack of federal funding isn't the only reason. It also has to do with U.S. patents on cell lines which aren't patented in other countries.) This is why you heard that embryonic stem cells offer the best hope for a cure for diseases. (Studies are confirming a finding by the University of Louisville that adult stem cells can be made to mimic embryonic stem cells.)
The arguments against the bill were based on moral grounds. I understand the objections that some people have but I don't know if a five-day-old cluster of cells that was created in a lab and has no chance of being implanted in a woman's womb should be considered the same as an implanted embryo (naturally or artificially). I tend to think not since it could not mature enough to survive without implantation but I also believe that technology could advance enough in the future where it would be possible for an embryo to mature into a full term baby solely through artificial support. If and when this occurs, would we want legislation setting a precedent that allows life created in a lab to be used for federally funded experimentation? (The bill that was passed, S. 3504, prohibits farming of fetuses but only covers human pregnancies and non-human animals used as a surrogate.) When would the cutoff period be then? Some might say it should never be allowed, others might say before the first heartbeat (about five weeks after fertilization), and others might feel that any time up until term would be okay as long as the perceived need was great enough.
The current restrictions prohibit a lab that receives federal funding from using newer colonies of stem cells. The only ones available for this are from embryos destroyed before Aug. 9, 2001. This doesn't prevent labs from doing the research with private or state funding. There is no ban on the research. It's being done at universities (Harvard has developed 17 new stem cell lines) and pharmaceutical companies. With all of the complaints about drug companies profits, it's a bit ironic to think that there are some who would be willing to subsidize their research with taxpayer dollars.
The problem is that a lab that receives federal funding and wants to do embryonic stem cell research on non-approved lines must have a totally separate section for this. Nothing shall be shared, directly or indirectly, including location, equipment, or maintenance.
If our legislators had wanted to create an effective bill, it would have had nothing to do with what lines are available, it would have simplified the accounting of indirect costs for facilities and administration. I believe this would have had a greater chance of becoming law but laws about accounting don't give them as much opportunity for high profile sound bites. What politician wants to tell how he/she fought for or against making sure that even the brooms used to sweep up in the labs have their costs pro-rated according to their use in federally funded labs and research labs using other funding when claiming to be "for science" or "for life" is a much surer bet to make the evening news?
You can read the full text of the speech here. (There's also a video link if you want to watch it.)
When I watched the speech, my first reaction was that it was better than I had feared it would be but worse than I had hoped.
I have questions regarding the temporary worker plan. How do you make sure that people leave when their stay is over? What would businesses need to have to do to verify that the "tamper-proof biometric card" is authentic?
As for the illegal immigrants who are already here, what really is the difference "between an illegal immigrant who crossed the border recently, and someone who has worked here for many years"? Other than better timing....
Until the Congress and Senate have their say this isn't a plan, only intentions (just one step up from wishful thinking). None of it really counts until some action is taken.
I just got a phone call with an automated 2-question poll.
The first question asked what would definately make me vote in the next election -
Rising healthcare costs.
Rising fuel prices.
Ending corruption in Congress.
My primary reason for voting wasn't among them so I didn't make it to question 2.
My basic opinion on the immigration issue is - immigrants = good, illegal immigrants = bad. (In case you can't figure it out, it's the illegal part that I object to.) My first reaction to the protests planned for Monday was that it's Not A Good Idea. Now I'm having second thoughts and want to join in...in my own way.
Consider Monday a day to be what you want to be. Ever wish you were a doctor but don't want to go through all that pesky med school business? Be an Undocumented Doctor. Be an Undocumented Mayor for a day - no fundraising, no campaigning and no elections.
Picking just one may be the hardest part:
Undocumented Nobel Laureate (I know it's not a job, but....)
Undocumented Rock Star
Undocumented Race Car Driver (will this get me out of a speeding ticket?)
Just one last thought on the topic, will those who support illegal immigration stop referring to the Minuteman Project as vigilantism if we start calling the people involved "Undocumented Border Patrol Agents"?
Update: The final choice is Undocumented ICE Agent.
According to several articles, this one from MSNBC for example:
Senate Republicans proposed a $100 rebate check for millions of taxpayers Thursday to counter high gasoline costs.
The only limit I could find in any of the articles that I read was an upper income amount of $125,000 for single tax payers and $150,000 for couples. So does this mean you could get the rebate even if you don't have a vehicle that uses gas?
I hate to say this (and never thought I would) but the Democrats' suggestion "for a 60-day suspension of the 18.4 cent federal gasoline tax and the 24-cent a gallon diesel tax" sounds more logical to me. (That's assuming the savings will be passed on to consumers of goods where the cost has risen as a result of the cost of transporting them.*)
Don't get me wrong, I would be quite happy with a check. It would give me more than I would save at the pump in two months with the federal gas tax suspended (not counting on any goods transportation savings being passed on), but it still doesn't mean it makes sense to me.
*It could happen...in a sort of quantum-physics-anything-is-possible sort of way.
First I read the letter from Joseph W. DuRocher to President Bush. It made me wonder who this guy was. Writing a letter is one thing but for it to show up so many other places makes it seem more of a publicity stunt. So I Googled him.
I found he was a public defender in Florida and against the death penalty. He was also a signer of a statement by The World Can't Wait: Drive Out the Bush Regime. FIRE also expressed concern about the same event. Doesn't seem like there's much of interest here regarding his letter other than his affiliation with a group who wants to "drive out the Bush regime" but one paragraph in the World Can't Wait statement caught my attention.
The attacks on the student organizers at Hampton University, a historically black college with a mostly Republican administration, is an ugly harbinger of the “dissent-free” future the Bush regime is trying to lock into place.
A college with a mostly Republican administration! Now, that's exciting news.
From the Duluth News Tribune: Plame's identity, if truly a secret, was thinly veiled
According to the article, anyone with a computer and an interest in her identity may have been able to figure out who she was and what she did. While I think that exposing truly covert agents should be severely punished (Aldrich Aimes, for example), I doubt that exposing Plame's identitiy fits in that category.
If simply lying to friends and neighbors about where she worked and what she did is enough to consider her "covert", then bars and nightclubs must be teeming with secret agents.
Once she was transferred to CIA headquarters it didn't matter what she said she did. Either maintaining her cover was no longer important or she (and the CIA) were inept. For the sake of our intelligence, I hope it's the former.
Set 19 (pdf) contains seven Tribunal hearings (summaries are in the extended entry).
In each case unclassified evidence or accusations are presented. In some cases a request is made to present classified evidence at a closed tribunal at a later time. After the presentation of the unclassified evidence the detainee is allowed to make a statement if he chooses and to answer questions from the Tribunal and his Personal Representative.
If one accepts the evidence as factual, then there is cause for all of the detainees to remain at Gitmo. If one accepts the detainees' statements as true, then none were fighting against coalition forces nor did they have any involvement in terrorist activities. Due to this conflict between the evidence presented and the detainees' testimony, any conclusions from these reports would be subjective.
ISN #457: Mohammed Gul - several of the questions in his case were about his name, whether Gul was a common name in his village and whether there were others with the same name. To me, this implies that he was known by name as a member of a terrorist organization and the Tribunal was trying to make sure that he was the correct Mohammed Gul. (There was no statement verifing this in the record.) Neither he nor the witness testified that there were others with the same name in their village.
The detainee denied the accusations but did not provide any evidence to contradict them.
Conclusion - There is enough evidence presented to continue to detain him.
ISN #1013: Name unknown - The detainee admits to trying to enter the United States illegally through Mexico but denies any relationship with terrorist organizations.
Conclusion - There is enough evidence to detain him.
ISN #686: Name unknown - the detainee refuses to answer most of the questions saying that the answers are in his file even thought the Tribunal tells him that they have not read the file and do not have it. He denies the accusations but will not make statements supporting his denials.
The report states that there is classified evidence that is not presented in this hearing.
Conclusion - Inconclusive from testimony given. Should detain pending presentation of classified evidence.
ISN #103 - Name unknown - the detainee would not participate in the Tribunal process. His reply to the accusations was made by his Personal Representative. The PR was able to confirm that the detainee traveled from China to Afghanistan but was unable to confirm or deny any accusation about involvement with terrorist groups, individuals, or activities.
Conclusion - Inconclusive from evidence given.
ISN #440: Mohammed (changed to Osama), last name unknown - The detainee denies accusations of fighting against coalition forces and of being a member of a terrorist organization. He does admit to working with a charitable organization that the United States has classified as having ties to Al Qaida.
Conclusion - The detainee has requested evidence be sent from his home. Although the evidence presented suggests cause to continue to hold the detainee, no conclusion can be made until the presentation of the detainee's evidence.
ISN #1050: Name unknown - The detainee makes contradictory statements that first seem to agree with the accusations and then to deny them. A request is made by the Recorder to present classified evidence at a later time.
Conclusion - Inconclusive from testimony given. Should detain pending presentation of classified evidence.
ISN #1043: Abdul Razak - the detainee was a government worker under the Taliban. He was first President of Customs and then Minister of Commerce. He admitted this but denied involvement in military affairs. There was a request by the Reporter to present classified evidence at a later time. According to the detainee, President Karzai excuse all former government workers who were not opposed to the new government.
Conclusion - although his positions in the Taliban government would indicate a fairly high involvement with them, his actual role and knowledge of terrorist activities cannot be determined from this report.
Notes: At least a couple of the detainees were captured by the new Afghan military. It is possible to draw a couple of different conclusions. The Afghans are aware of tribal relations and the detainees involvement with terrorist groups so one might have a reasonable assumption that there is evidence to continue to hold the detainees. Or, the Afghan military wants to be seen as being efficient in ridding their country of people with terrorist/Taliban ties and have taken people into custody on circumstantial evidence.
The tribunal presents the accusations (association with forces engaged in hostilities, possession of a weapon and communications equipment, he was captured with a recruiter and other Taliban members, had worked for Hezb-E Islami Gulbuddin, that coalition forces were fired upon during the seizure, and was captured near a suspected Taliban facility) and the detainee denies them all other than admitting to being in the general area (in his home in Afghanistan). Most of the questions involve asking the detainee about his living in Saudi Arabia during the Taliban rule and his return to Afghanistan.
The detainee presents one witness, Khan Zaman, who appears to be another detainee and a resident of the same village in Afghanistan. The detainee mentioned that Khan and Gul both have the same meaning and the witness said that all the residents of the village were of the same tribe so I think it's possible that there is a familial relationship also.
Many of the tribunal's questions for the witness involved asking about the number of people in the village with the name Gul and whether the detainee's name, Mohammed Gul, was common.
The detainee was accused of trying to enter the United States illegally through Mexico, of using forged travel documents, of traveling on a vessel that was the focus of Operation Southern Watch, and that the smuggler who operated this vessel had close ties to known terrorist groups.
The detainee admitted to trying to enter the country illegally but denied being present on the vessel or knowing about the smuggler's relationship with terrorist organizations.
There is no introductory summary of the accusations against the detainee. It is noted that the Recorder requested a closed sesson at a later time to present classified information. (One question later on indicates he was arrested due to suspected ties with Al Qaida.)
This detainee said he is a student (from Yemen) in Pakistan and had no other statement to make.
When questioned about his studies he says the answers are all in his file. The tribunal tells him that they do not have access to his file but he refuses to provide any other information about whether he was studying at a University or taking religious studies.
He was arrested by Pakistanis in a house with several other people and has been at Gitmo for about two years according to his testimony.
The detainee denies the truth of the exhibits against him but refuses to make any relevant statements on his own behalf. He again answers several questions by saying the information is all in his file.
The Personal Representatve summarizes the accusations - the detainee is associated with Al Qaida, has trained with Al Farouq, that he was captured with ammunition, that he was captured with others associated with Al Qaida, that he is associated with Jama'at al-Tabligh and that this is a missionary organization used as a cover to mask terrorist activities. The detainee denied the accusations that involved his actions and claimed no knowledge of other people or groups.
The detainee did not want to take part in the tribunal process. His representative read the allegations and answers given by the detainee during a previous interview. The detainee admits to traveling from China to Afghanistan in August/September 2001. He stayed in a guest house in Kabul for about six weeks. The Personal Representative cannot say whether the detainee traveled with an individual who may be involved in the East Turkistan Islamic Party. The detainee left Kabul for Kandus when the U.S. bombing started. He was captured and was later present at the Mazar-E-Shariff prison uprising.
The detainee stated that the PR accurately represented his statements.
In November 2004, the tribunal tried to arrange for a witness named Mamar Diann to come from Yemen to testify. The Yemen government has not responded to the request so the witness was not present.
The detainee was accused of traveling to Afghanistan using forged documents. He denied this saying that the documents were real but he had changed his name to Osama. He was accused of receiving weapons training in Afghanistan but said that he had not done so. He learned how to use a Kalashnikov at age seven and did not need training with that and had not received training with any other weapons. He claims to have been employed by a charity group. In answer to further questions, the detainee denies any involvement with terrorist or with fighting against coalition forces.
Much of his testimony was about his reason for traveling to Afghanistan. He went there to earn money working for a charity to post bail for his grandfather who had stabbed someone and to avoid retaliation.
The detainee had requested a character witness but this was denied since it wasn't relevant to the accusations. The Recorder presented evidence and asked for a closed Tribunal session later to present classified evidence.
The detainee admitted to being a student at madrassas in Afghanistan. He denied acting as a guide for groups committing attacks. He admits to being arrested on the battlefield after the group he was with exchanged gun fire with the Afghan Militia Force. He seems to contradict this later under questioning. He says he was arrested while walking to a village.
He denies learning about jihad in the madrassa and says he doesn't know the meaning of jihad.
Detainee Abdul Razak is accused of being a member of the Taliban and working for them as President of Customs and then as Minister of Commerce from 1996 to 2001. He admits to this but denies having any involvement in military affairs.
According to his testimony President Karzai announced that former Taliban government workers were excused but he was still arrested. The detainee believes this reversal was due to the Americans entering Afghanistan. A later statement says that the announcement said that those not in opposition to the new government were excused.
The detainee says he was not in opposition to the new government but his nephew was. The detainee had been arrested at his nephew's home.
Gov. Rod Blagojevich was confused by an interview for "The Daily Show". He thought it was going to be a legitimate news interview.
The segment, which aired two weeks ago, also featured Illinois Republican Rep. Ron Stephens, a pharmacist who opposes the governor's order to pharmacies. Stephens has said he knew the show was a comedy.
"I thought the governor was hip enough that he would have known that, too," Stephens said.
Yesterday evening just before the State of the Union Address, Cindy Sheehan was removed from the gallery for wearing a protest t-shirt. Truthout has Cindy Sheehan's version of her arrest.
She begins by telling us how busy she was that day and how she hadn't really planned on attending. It sounds as if her wearing the t-shirt was just a matter of a lack of time for preparation.
I was never told that I couldn't wear that shirt into the Congress. I was never asked to take it off or zip my jacket back up.
Who knew that t-shirts weren't appropriate attire? I mean, everytime I see the Senate on C-SPAN they're all, um, well they're all in business attire...but this is different, it's a special occasion. Removing the shirt at that point would not have been wise. There are some things that even Senators don't deserve to be exposed to.
But then she says, I wore the shirt to make a statement. The press knew I was going to be there, and I thought every once in awhile they would show me, and I would have the shirt on. I did not wear it to be disruptive, or I would have unzipped my jacket during George's speech. If I had any idea what happens to people who wear shirts that make the neocons uncomfortable, that I would be arrested ... maybe I would have, but I didn't.
So it really wasn't a lack of time because her decision to attend was a last minute thing. She wanted to be seen on TV wearing that shirt but played her hand too early.
Update: The wife of Rep. C.W. Bill Young, R-Indian Shores, told a newspaper that she was ejected during the State of the Union address for wearing a T-shirt that says, "Support the Troops Defending Our Freedom."
While I prefer her message to that of Sheehan's (2245 Dead), I still believe that this was not the appropriate time or place for wearing a t-shirt of any kind. For those that think we shouldn't concern ourselves with rules of etiquette, sloganeering and protesting in the Capitol is also against the law.
I began reading an article in Democrats.com that says a Zogby International poll shows that Americans want Bush impeached if he wiretapped American citizens without a judge's approval.
I distrust reports of poll results. I like to read all of the questions, answer options, and results myself so I checked out the site of the organization that commissioned the poll, AfterDowningStreet.org. This took a minute since I had to correct the URL in my browser's address box because the coding on Democrats.com is bad. I didn't find this poll but I did find one that was strangely similar. It's interesting how the results for both polls (53% to 42% and 52% to 43%) favor impeachment if the President did whatever the poll was asking about.
That doesn't mean the results are inaccurate but it does make me wonder about them. Would any poll asking "If the President did X, should Congress consider holding him accountable through impeachment?" As long as the questions begin with "if" it doesn't matter whether anyone thinks he did that, just whether they think X is an impeachable offense.
Still curious about the questions used, how the sample was selected, and how the poll was conducted (telephone, mail, online, face-to-face?) I went to the Zogby International site. I didn't find anything about the polls on this site either but I did find this:
ImpeachPAC today announced the formation of a Citizens Impeachment Commission to make 2006 the "Year of Impeachment."
Their goals are:
To put impeachment firmly "on the map" of national politics by demonstrating broad and significant support for the impeachment of George Bush and Dick Cheney for lying about Iraq.
To lobby Members of Congress to introduce Articles of Impeachment immediately.
To campaign for pro-impeachment candidates and elect a pro-impeachment majority to Congress in November.
If one of your goals is to get more press about impeachment then groups commissioning polls with hypothetical questions about it is certainly a way to get some attention.
In an interview at the white-pillared governor's mansion, built by Huey P. Long in the 1930's, Ms. Blanco dismissed some of the criticism against her as sexist. "I'm not a guy," she said. "I can't be Rudy, whatever that is."
For someone who has no influence over my day-to-day life, the governor of Louisiana really manages to annoy me. In what way does being a politician have anything to with whether or not one has a penis? (No Clinton jokes, please.)
Even though we are from different political parties, I would have liked to have seen Blanco do well. Not just because better management would have helped the people of her state but also because I like to see women do well in politics. She could have said, "yes, I made mistakes but I've learned from them and am better prepared to oversee the rebuilding." Instead she blames it on being a woman. This makes me think she's learned nothing.
From The New York Times Magazine: Conservative Blogs are More Effective
Shortly before the election, a conservative Web site claimed that politically damaging information about [Jon] Corzine was about to surface in the media. It didn't. But New Jersey talk-radio shock jocks quoted the online speculation, inflicting public-relations damage on Corzine anyway.
My reaction to this part was probably not what the author of the article hoped for. I was impressed that shock jocks not only read conservative blogs but also let it influence them on-air. Wow. Karl Rove couldn't ask for much more than that.
Liberal misinformation is what? Nonexistent? Just a mistake that should be quickly forgotten? I'm sure Dan Rather would like either of those choices.
Liberals use the Web to air ideas and vent grievances with one another, often ripping into Democratic leaders. (Hillary Clinton, for instance, is routinely vilified on liberal Web sites for supporting the Iraq war.) Conservatives, by contrast, skillfully use the Web to provide maximum benefit for their issues and candidates. They are generally less interested in examining every side of every issue and more focused on eliciting strong emotional responses from their supporters.
I've read complaints from conservatives about the Bush administration and other conservatives in, or running for, office. Perhaps those things don't count as long as conservatives continue to support the war. It's not whether conservatives disagree with the politicians, it's whether they disagree on the "correct" things.
As for focusing "on eliciting strong emotional responses", do they mean things like "No blood for oil"? Cindy Sheehan using the death of her son to get attention? Yep, pure use of logic without any emotions there.
But what really makes conservatives effective is their pre-existing media infrastructure, composed of local and national talk-radio hosts like Rush Limbaugh, the Fox News Channel and sensationalist say-anything outlets like the Drudge Report - all of which are quick to pass on the latest tidbit from the blogosphere.
Ooooh. Rush, one cable news channel, and a Web site compared to liberal spokespeople on every major network (and as my son added, also on the government-funded public TV and radio stations). Would it be rubbing salt into their wounds to mention Air America?
Now we know. It's not that a large number of people support conservative ideals in politics, it's the wily conservative bloggers acting as puppetmasters.
Hugh Hewitt has posted about the CNN interview with Mary Mapes.
Mapes also clung to her new narrative that those attacking the documents were "anonymous." This is completely bogus, given that Powerline led the charge and all three contributors there were and have always been public.
Maybe her next book will be a dictionary where she gives new definitions to old words. In this case "anonymous" will no longer mean "unknown" but will instead mean "we couldn't find any dirt on them".
Dr. Sanity has an interesting post on Bush Derangement Syndrome.
Even my chldren have picked up on the illogic of the Bush-blamers' rants. Now when a pair of shoes can't be found, homework goes missing, Gameboy batteries die during a crucial part of a game, or any of the day-to-day mishaps occur, one of them is likely to say, "It's Bush's fault!".
After the Bush-blaming Katrina coverage, even rain and the seasonal change to cooler weather is open to a mocking, "I blame Bush".
Ask them why the dinosaurs became extinct and the answer will likely be, "Bush did it". The Krakatoa eruption in the late 1800s? Bush, again. It doesn't matter when, where, what, or who...the answer is always "Bush".
It's kind of sad when 9, 12, and 16-year-old children can see how silly it is to blame the president for everything while adult Bush-haters can't.
Not really a big surprise considering the reaction to her nomination. So, what shall we all argue about now?
A federal judge "blocked Georgia from enforcing a new state law requiring voters to show photo identification at the polls."
The requirement "is most likely to prevent Georgia's elderly, poor and African-American voters from voting," Judge Murphy wrote. "For those citizens, the character and magnitude of their injury -- the loss of their right to vote -- is undeniably demoralizing and extreme."
I guess being treated as if you were an incompetent child isn't demoralizing.
You must have a photo ID when you get a job (assuming you and your employer are paying your taxes) so shouldn't the majority of those old enough to vote aready have this type of identification?
The state's governor has offered to provide the cards to those who can't afford them so the cost shouldn't be a problem. I wonder if what's worrying those against this law isn't that some people will be unable to get an ID but rather that too many of them will be unwilling to be bothered to do so.
Former President Jimmy Carter said that "[t]here is 'no doubt in my mind that Gore won the election,' the erstwhile President declared, saying the 2000 election process 'failed abysmally.'"
Marybeth says, "Jimmy Carter is an idiot but I do recognize his expertise on abysmal failure."
Note that both statements are opinions. I don't know about Jimmy, but I sure feel better now that I've shared my feelings, because, you know, how you feel about something is so much more important being able to support it with facts.
In an email from John Kerry about a speech at Brown University:
The Real Test of Katrina
This is the real test of Katrina. Will we be satisfied to only do the immediate: care for the victims and rebuild the city? Or will we be inspired to tackle the incompetence that left us so unprepared, and the societal injustice that left so many of the least fortunate waiting and praying on those rooftops?
I have a "Katrina Test" for speeches. Does it offer solutions or just politically motivated rhetoric? Does it tell the whole truth or just enough truth to lead listeners into false assumptions? You can read it, you decide if it passes the test.
Every day I watch the news on TV, hear it on the radio, and read it online. The new news changes - hurricanes, Tom Cruise, the London bombings. The old news stays the same - Karl Rove. The only thing that makes it mildly interesting is if someone refers to it as the Rove/Plame affair. Or better yet, the Rove/Plame/Wilson/Cooper/Novak/Miller affair. Now that sounds like some real hanky-panky. Unfortunately it's not nearly as interesting as it sounds.
I can't really tell what's going on with the whole thing. As best as I can tell some people think that Rove has Jedi mind control powers that surpass even Yoda. Good thing he's working for America, huh?
The Washington, D.C., Beltway is in one of its periodic orgies over next to nothing. Nobody gets by with pooh-poohing such proceedings, which will proceed until 1) the Beltway has made nothing sound like something, or 2) the rest of the country tunes out totally or falls dead asleep.
He's betting on the latter. Judging by my feelings on the matter, I am too.
Now I'm just waiting for someone to say that the public's general indifference to the story is another example of Rove's awesome super-mind-control powers.
(Title quotation from Homer Simpson because, really, who can better illustrate the point?)
Transcript of a press conference by Nancy Pelosi, the Minority Leader of the House of Representatives.
She talks about building evacuations when planes enter Capitol airspace. She starts out sounding as if she's against evacuation and then as if she's for it. I don't know. I'm confused.
She also talked about Social Security. "We also had events that welcomed the President wherever he went to educate the public about the perils of privatization. We're continuing that effort."
I really doubt they "welcomed the President" anywhere. I also doubt that the President was trying to "educate the public about the perils of privatization".
Well, let me have just a little bit of peril?
The questions and answers that are getting the most attention tonight are about the Kelo decision. My favorite line is, "So this is almost as if God has spoken."
If she equates the Supreme Court with God and there are three powers of government, does that mean she believes in the Holy Trinity? Has she just promoted herself to deity?
Update: I wasn't the only one who wondered about "that Trinity thing" - See Day by Day from 7/5.
Karl Rove gave a speech when he was awarded the Charles Edison Memorial Award. Some of what he said has become a topic of discussion on the news and on blogs.
One of my favorite lines that I haven't seen quoted anywhere yet was about the successes of Conservatives and the Bush administration - Once again, they misunderestimated what you and he could do.
Bush has been ridiculed for using the word "misunderestimate" but I like the word. I know "underestimate" means about the same thing but when we aren't supposed to criticize the use of double negatives in vernacular speech (done to show emphasis) then why criticize the addition of "mis-" when it's done to emphasize how much he was underestimated?
Rove went on to compare Conservatives and Liberals:
Conservatives believe in lower taxes; liberals believe in higher taxes. We want few regulations; they want more. Conservatives measure the effectiveness of government programs by results; liberals measure the effectiveness of government programs by inputs. We believe in curbing the size of government; they believe in expanding the size of government. Conservatives believe in making America a less litigious society; liberals believe in making America a more litigious society. We believe in accountability and parental choice in education; they don't. Conservatives believe in advancing what Pope John Paul II called a "culture of life"; liberals believe there is an absolute unlimited right to abortion.
But perhaps the most important difference between conservatives and liberals can be found in the area of national security. Conservatives saw the savagery of 9/11 and the attacks and prepared for war; liberals saw the savagery of the 9/11 attacks and wanted to prepare indictments and offer therapy and understanding for our attackers. In the wake of 9/11, conservatives believed it was time to unleash the might and power of the United States military against the Taliban; in the wake of 9/11, liberals believed it was time to… submit a petition. I am not joking. Submitting a petition is precisely what Moveon.org did. It was a petition imploring the powers that be" to "use moderation and restraint in responding to the… terrorist attacks against the United States."
...Conservatives saw what happened to us on 9/11 and said: we will defeat our enemies. Liberals saw what happened to us and said: we must understand our enemies. Conservatives see the United States as a great nation engaged in a noble cause; liberals see the United States and they see … Nazi concentration camps, Soviet gulags, and the killing fields of Cambodia.
So far I haven't seen any comments about the first paragraph of the quotation about taxes, government programs, lawsuits, accountability and education, and abortion. The national security part has gotten a lot of attention. What I have read about that is that Democrats think that Rove should apologize. Nancy Pelosi said, "He knows full well, as do all Americans, that our country came together after 9/11."
Yes, and that togetherness lasted until it was time to take action. That's the point. Different political philosophies, different ideas about what to do. The things that Rove accuses the Liberals of may not be part of the "official" Democratic party philosophy but if you've followed the news and discussions of the subject over the last few years it sounds like a pretty clear summary of what was said. Google it if you don't think that's true, it's still out there.
I remember being rebuked for saying we need to understand our enemy until I made it clear that it wasn't to sympathize with them but that understanding motivations may help us fight them better.
No one's said it yet (that I've heard) but I think that the thing that set off the controversy over the speech wasn't just the comparison between Conservatives and Liberals but the last line of Rove's speech - Thank you very much for your attention, for your support of this President, and above all, for your devotion to this country. If you see this as questioning your patriotism, your devotion, then perhaps the comparisons made earlier are more on target than you want to admit.
"Republicans are not very friendly to different kinds of people. They’re a pretty monolithic party. They all behave the same and all look the same.” - Howard Dean
Kentucky is holding a special election on Tuesday, May 24th to fill the seat vacated by Republican State Representative Tim Feeley who accepted a Judicial Appointment by Governor Ernie Fletcher.
This evening a woman came to my door to ask me to vote for Jody Curry because "as we know, we need more women in Frankfort." I was trying to listen politely but I have to admit I rolled my eyes at that statement. As a woman, I like to see women succeed in politics but I don't consider it a reason to vote for a female candidate any more than I would vote for a man just because he's male. Just tell me your candidate's qualifications and his or her positions on issues.
I was in the middle of cooking dinner so I didn't ask questions, I just listened to what she had to say and then thanked her for reminding me of the upcoming election. I had gotten a phone call from someone working for David Osborn last week but had forgotten the date of the election so I really did appreciate the reminder.
More about the candidates here.
A Truth Laid Bear post got me thinking. The whole business about applying campaign finance laws to blogs makes me think that the FEC doesn't understand the Internet and how complicated it would be to enforce this.
What happens if a blogger links directly to an opposition candidate but links to a search engine or directory page that shows the link of the candidate they support? If, as I am assuming here, SEs and directories are exempt, what is it that makes them different from a blogroll or a separate page (or pages) that I could set up as a personal directory from my site to candidate's sites?
The problem with linking to a SE or directory is that it would take readers two clicks instead one. I could get around that if I link to another site or page that I've set up to redirect to a candidate's site. The redirect could be seamless enough not to annoy readers but the FEC will have to click each of my links to see where it really goes.
Do they plan on using a large number of servers to crawl the Web daily looking for violations? If so, would the bots ignore a robots.txt telling them to stay out? Or would they just have people viewing blogs or RSS feeds and pings announcing recent updates all day looking for links? Who's going to pay for this? (Okay, I know the answer to the last question.)
What happens if I use an online blogging service? How will they know who I am and if I am in the U.S.? If they shut it down, I can just begin a new one. Will blogging services have to use software that prevents these links? What if I use free hosting but my own software? Will they be able to demand that IPs of violators be banned? What if my ISP uses dynamic IPs? Will everyone who has that ISP be banned from using these services? What if I have my own domain but my site is hosted outside the U.S.? Will they be able to get my contact information from my hosting service?
This could be good news for hosting services in countries that wouldn't feel inclined to cooperate with providing information on site owners. Wouldn't that be a nice bit of irony if U.S. political blogs/sites were hosted in "less than friendly" countries?
Will I have to disable all html in my comments? Not allow a link to show for the commenters name? What if I search for abandoned blogs that allowed comments and add links there to candidate's sites? (Not that I would, I consider comment spammers among the lowest of the low...but still, you know some people would do it.)
Will I have to delete pages from my archive? Will I be responsible for telling Google (and others) not to cache pages with links to candidates to make sure they aren't availabe to anyone within 60 days before an election?
The FEC is wrong because this will restrict free speech. Any attempt to do this is also stupid because enforcement wouldn't be practical.
...but is it dying?
...the cultural liberalism that emerged from the convulsions of the 1960s drove the liberal faith out of the mainstream. Its fundamental value is that society should have no fundamental values, except for a pervasive relativism that sees all values as equal. Part of the package was a militant secularism, pitched against religion, the chief source of fundamental values. Complaints about "imposing" values were also popular then, aimed at teachers and parents who worked to socialize children.
Last night (really early morning) I looked at the numbers coming from Ohio, Iowa, New Mexico, and Nevada and decided they would end up going for Bush. I quit channel hopping and tuned in to CBS to see if Dan Rather would break down in tears or something...explode, maybe.
No such luck he was still in denial. By 3:00 a.m. they were still refusing to call any of those states for Bush. The more Rather tried to explain why Kerry still had a chance, the more confident I became that Bush would be declared the winner.
Finally at 11:00 today Kerry called the president. I thank him for showing grace in defeat rather than dragging this out and causing further division.
I voted this morning. The line was longer than usual but it moved quickly. I was there less than ten minutes.
Now there isn't anything left to do but wait.
The results favored George Bush by a percentage of 55.2% to John Kerry's 41.6%. Ralph Nader pulled 1.5% and a generic "other" candidate pulled 1.5%. Duplicate votes were eliminated from the results.
From an electoral college perspective, Senator Kerry won 10 states in the survey while President Bush took 41. If this were the actual vote, this would yield John Kerry 75 electoral votes and George Bush 456 electoral votes.
I just got a call from a nice man who wanted to ask me how I felt about comments that had been made about Senator Bunning (KY-R). He wanted to know what I thought about some newspapers commenting on the senator's "bizarre behavior".
I like attributions with quotations so I asked, "What newspapers?"
"Some state newspapers."
"What state newspapers?"
"Some in New Jersey."
"Why should I care about what New Jersey papers have to say about our state's senator?"
"I wanted to ask how you feel about the remarks..."
"Why should I care about what New Jersey papers have to say about our state's senator?"
"Thank you, ma'am. Good bye."
I didn't mean it as a rhetorical question. I really was curious why the opinions of people in another state mattered in my state's election. (Who do they think they are, The Guardian?) I'm sure that whatever reason they have, it's purely altruistic and not because they're hoping the Democrats get control of the senate.
The presidential election is less than a week away. You can still volunteer through the 72-Hour Project but the most important thing you can do is vote to re-elect the president! Even if your state is solidly red or blue, your vote is still important. The main goal, of course, is to win the electoral college vote but a decisive win of the popular vote will strengthen the beginning of President Bush's second term.
Find information about your polling location:
Read more on the other Blogs for Bush...
Do kids' polls mean anything?
It's true that kids can't vote in a real election but I think that their votes in these polls are a good reflection of their parents' opinions. Adults may be reluctant to give accurate information or claim to be undecided. Kids are much more open...just ask Bill Cosby or Art Linkletter.
The first three polls claim to have a history of predicting the election outcome. Since 1956 Weekly Reader has only been wrong once - early voting picked Robert Kennedy in 1968. Nickelodeon says their poll has picked the winner in every election since 1988. The Scholastic poll has picked the winner in every election but two since 1940.
Since two of the polls picked Bush and one picked Kerry, at least one will be wrong this year. I wonder if conservative families (who would be more likely to pick Bush) could be under represented in the Nickelodeon poll because they may be more likely to limit television viewing.
The stories John Kerry tells - Christmas in Cambodia, being 30 yards away from Bill Buckner when he missed the ball, meeting with the U.N. Security Council, and all the similar stories which place him somewhere he couldn't have been doing something there is no record of him doing - makes me think of Walter Mitty.
The Secret Life of Walter Mitty is a short story by James Thurber. In real life Mitty is a meek, henpecked man. In his daydreams he's a hero.
The voting ended yesterday:
These results are from the Scholastic Election Poll 2004. Scholastic Classroom Magazines give students the opportunity to vote for the president. Since 1940 the students have picked the winner in all but two elections.
The complete election results should be announced Thursday.
I just got a one-question automated telephone poll for Kentucky. It made me realize that I hadn't been paying enough attention to local elections.
The call began by telling me that President Bush plans to begin a national sales tax. No longer would I be able to take any tax deductions. It would unfairly burden the middle class...cost us billions of dollars. The call made it sound as though the tax was ready to go into effect as soon as I pull the lever for George Bush on November 2.
Then they asked if I supported Nick Clooney or Geoff Davis (who supports the Bush administration's plan to take all my money and do other horrible things to me that would make Abu Graib look like Disney World. Well, maybe that wasn't exactly how it was worded.)
A national sales tax that replaces corporate and personal income taxes has been mentioned as one of several options that should be considered.
"Only the biggest spenders pay the maximum rate; those at or below the poverty level pay an honest and transparent nothing," continued Wright. "Effective rates drop across the board, though how much actual tax people pay is in their hands. Those who spend profligately will pay more tax; those who live frugally, save, and invest will pay less. Other benefits include complete paychecks, with no federal withholding of any kind. Pay no tax, hidden or obvious, on the necessities of life up to the poverty level. Keep no records; file no returns; suffer no audits. American financial institutions no longer perform domestic surveillance functions for the Internal Revenue Service. Under the FairTax, Americans become invisible to the federal tax collector, as do their families, their churches, and their non- retail businesses."
Sorry, Mr. Clooney. I think it is reasonable to consider this option. The only thing this poll accomplished by calling me is to make me think that you're trying to scare people into voting for you by giving them misleading information. Your attempt to manipulate me doesn't make me like you very much. I'm kind of sorry about that because I used to enjoy watching you on AMC and I really liked your sister. Your son's cute enough but, like you, needs to learn when to shut up.
The call did have one benefit though. I looked up the website for Geoff Davis. I found out he went to West Point and studied Arabic and the cultures of Southwest Asia and Eastern Europe. The man not only studied national security and international affairs, he has real experience from when he ran the U.S. Army Aviation Operations for Peace Enforcement between Israel and Egypt.
I looked at the "issues" pages for Clooney and Davis. I have a clearer understanding of what both candidates represent and have decided whom I will be voting for. Sorry, again, Mr. Clooney, it won't be you. But thanks for the call.
Transcript for the October 13, 2004 debate is here.
The spin from the left says Kerry sounds presidential. I think he sounds like a lawyer - "The measurement is: Are we as safe as we ought to be?" I was surprised he didn't suggest requiring warning labels on terrorists.
What does limited availability of the flu vaccine have to do with health insurance? Kerry replies to the question about the vaccine with complaints about how many people in Arizona, Ohio, and Wisconsin don't have insurance. I guess he only memorized numbers from debate locations.
Later Kerry says that "the president switched away from jobs and started talking about education principally." I can see a clearer connection between education preparing people for changes in the job market than I can between what the lack of insurance has to do with a vaccine shortage.
I'm also tired of Kerry telling me how the economic situation of the middle class is so bad. Maybe it is for a lot of people, I don't know. I do know that I'm doing better this year than I did last year and last year was better than the year before.
Even if you ignore the fact that it was tacky for Kerry to mention Mary Cheney, wouldn't it have made more sense to mention someone who actually supports him?
Kerry respects the views of people who are pro-life (he respected them in the last debate too) unless the person in question is a potential Supreme Court Judge, then they better support Roe v. Wade.
Questions about Social Security, immigration, and the draft. More whining from Kerry.
Question about the ban on assault weapons. Kerry tells an anecdote about a sheriff in Iowa:
I was hunting in Iowa last year with a sheriff from one of the counties there, and he pointed to a house in back of us, and said, "See the house over? We just did a drug bust a week earlier, and the guy we arrested had an AK-47 lying on the bed right beside him. "
A year ago? Guess the ban wasn't very effective so why are you complaining about it not being extended?
More nonsense from Kerry, this time about affirmative action. See a timetable for affirmative action here. Read it then read Kerry's reply to the question.
Question about faith. Bush spoke from the heart. Kerry spoke from talking points.
Time wasting question about bringing the country together.
Question about wives and daughters. Bush talks about his wife.
Oedipus Kerry talks about his mother then goes on to say his wife and daughters "kick me around" and "don't let me get away with anything".
The question that wasn't asked: Senator Kerry, didn't all those years at prep school, Yale, and Boston College teach you the difference between "me" and "myself"? (I'll give you a hint. One's objective and the other reflexive.)
That's even more than military kids do.
Last night on NOW David Brancaccio talked to the third party candidates in the presidential election. He spent the last few minutes of the first segment suggesting that Nader withdraw and ask his supporters to vote for Kerry...or at least do so in Florida.
Maybe he was kidding...I couldn't be sure but it didn't appear that Nader found any humor in the suggestion.
Nader's reply was that half of his supporters are people who would not be voting otherwise. The other half are evenly divided between Republicans and Democrats. He pointed out that everyone running is competing for votes and that none of them should be labeled a "spoiler" for doing so.
Transcript available from the Commission on Presidential Debates.
Streaming video available from C-SPAN if you want to watch (or re-watch) the debate.
I think Cheney won the debate.
I'm glad that Cheney made it clear that small businesses pay taxes as personal rather than corporate income and the Kerry/Edwards plan to take tax cuts away from anyone making over $200,000 a year will harm them.
I got tired of Edwards wanting to comment on previous questions/answers before answering the question he was just asked.
After hearing Edwards say "preventative" instead of "preventive", I don't want to hear anymore complaints about how Bush pronounces nuclear.
Some people seem to approach political elections the same way they did elections for high school class president. I like to think of it more as reviewing job applications. Who do I want to hire?
That's all I have to say for now. If you want something in depth, look elsewhere:
Update: I realized later. What it is. About the way Edwards speaks. That I find annoying. Many of his sentences. Come out in mini-bursts.
Is there a class in law school where they teach trial lawyers to talk like that? It sounds as though he's addressing a not-very-bright jury and wants to make sure everyone understands the key points in each sentence.
I was just listening to a Kerry spokeswoman talk about his position on the war in Iraq. She began by saying, "Knowing what we know now..." and continued with how going to war was a bad idea.
How unreasonable is that statement?
I won't concede that it was the wrong thing to do, knowing what we did then or now but that's not really my point.
Sure, there are things we could have done differently. Hindsight is wonderful. Knowing what I know now I would have begged and borrowed all the money I could and bet it on Charismatic to win in the 1999 Kentucky Derby (31-1). Not that winning a lot of money would guarantee that my life would be sunshine and lollipops now.
It's always easier to imagine that the path not taken or the choice not made would have been better. It's easier to imagine the positive results that could have come about but much more difficult to imagine the negative ones because the positive results are fairly finite while there is virtually an infinite number of other things that could have gone wrong.
Remember the ads that said "Join the army, See the world"? How about this instead: Become a senator or representative and see the world...the accommdations are much better.
How much does your senator or representative travel? Where do they go? Who pays? Power Trips has the answer.
John Breaux - Democratic Party - $158,311.92
Robert Wexler - Democratic Party - $155,137.21
Gene Green - Democratic Party - $153,873.02
Maurice Hinchey - Democratic Party - $152,169.25
Cal Dooley - Democratic Party - $148,562.50
Evan Bayh - Democratic Party - $142,884.94
Maxine Waters - Democratic Party - $132,219.23
James Clyburn - Democratic Party - $129,540.79
Philip English - Republican Party - $129,231.54
Jim McDermott - Democratic Party - $128,725.91
There's a list of the top 10 sponsors. Aspen Institute is number one. ($2,577,639.21 spent on 490 trips, 69.2% spent on Democratic Party, 0.8% spent on Independent Party, 30.0% spent on Republican Party) According to their site, "The mission of the Aspen Institute is to foster enlightened leadership, the appreciation of timeless ideas and values, and open-minded dialogue on contemporary issues." I guess they think Democrats need more enlightenment than Republicans or Independents.)
Number two is the Ripon Educational Fund. ($603,585.43 spent on 59 trips, 4.3% spent on Democratic Party, 0.0% spent on Independent Party, 95.7% spent on Republican Party) It's a Republican 501 so the disparity isn't a surprise.
Down the list a bit (#7) is the Confederation of Indian Industry. ($186,966.79 spent on 16 trips, 87.3% spent on Democratic Party, 0.0% spent on Independent Party, 12.7% spent on Republican Party) I guess they all went to talk about ending outsourcing.
More in the extended section....
John Edwards only took 6 trips, all in 2001 and 2002. Three were for trial lawyer associations. Two trips paid for him to go to his home state of North Carolina. One was to California, paid for by Disney, to attend a corporate alliances summit.
John Kerry only took 5 trips averaging $2,535.82 each. It was going to a couple of World Economics Forums that pushed up the cost, the trips to Boston and Washington D.C. were relatively cheap. (Do you think that the World Economics Forum had study guides for the "global test"?)
Minority leader Nancy Pelosi has only made 6 trips but she knows how to pick destinations (England, Spain, Germany, Puerto Rico)
Bill Frist is a big traveler with 20 trips. Not enough to make the top 100, but he still gets around. Only one was outside the U.S., a trip to Namibia and Kenya for a medical mission trip sponsored by Samaritans Purse who also sponsored a couple trips to North Carolina for him.
Tom Daschle made 9 trips. Four of them were trips to New York, sponsored by Crown Publishing, to publicize his book.
The Washington Post has a transcript from this evening's debate.
More resources along with streaming video of the debates can be found on C-SPAN's debate page.
Vice Presidential Debate
Tuesday, October 5
Case Western Reserve University
Why does Kerry think that going after Saddam or going after bin Laden is an either/or thing?
We have Saddam and Theresa Heinz Kerry thinks we'll have bin Laden soon.
In regard to the hunt for terror leader Osama Bin Laden, Heinz Kerry said she could see the al-Qaida chief being caught before the November election.
"I wouldn't be surprised if he appeared in the next month," said Heinz Kerry, alluding to a possible capture by United States and allied forces before election day.
Too bad her husband doesn't share her optimism. (Yes, I realize she was really implying that we know where bin Laden is...or have him already, and can announce his capture just in time for a pre-election boost.)
If anyone made up a drinking game to go with the debate, I hope that they only assigned a small sip for every time Kerry mentions his Vietnam service. Otherwise they might not make it to the end of the debate.
When Kerry has his two-minute turns, Bush frequently looks grim. When Bush speaks, Kerry looks like a bobblehead. I assume he doesn't agree with what the president is saying so I'm not sure why he keeps nodding his head.
What's the "global test"? Is it multiple choice or open response? Either way, my answer is, we don't need any other country to tell us what is best for Americans.
USAA (provider of insurance and financial services to military families) has a quarterly magazine for the children of its members. While the kids are too young to vote in the presidential election, the summer edition invited kids to send in their votes to the magazine. Here are the results:
29% Family and Friends
5% Famous People
4.5% Other Politicians
6% Others (prinicpals, teachers, religious leaders, cartoon characters, athletes, book characters, and U Mag editors)
Do the kids' votes reflect the opinions of their parents? If so, what does that say about Kerry's support among members of the military?
I had noticed an increase in the number of visits to my blog that came from searches for the Just Go Vote Foundation. I was wondering if they were making phone calls again...I just got my answer. (Previous posts here and here.
A robo-caller who claims to be "Bob Franklin" called to let me know about the horrors of outsourcing. Bob (I'm sure he wouldn't mind me calling him by his first name) said that we are going to lose 3 million jobs to outsourcing. Poor Bob is worried about our high school and college graduates not being able to find jobs.
He only seemed to be bothered by jobs that were going abroad, not ones where human workers were being replaced by robo-callers. I can see his concern though. He probably doesn't want the robo-kids moving back in with robo-mom and robo-dad because their potential jobs are being done by a call center in India.
Bob encouraged me to vote in the November election to make sure our jobs stay here. He didn't mention who he thought I should vote for...but I do know who has been
ranting talking about outsourcing. Remember "Benedict Arnold CEOs"?
Sorry, Bob. You and Senator Kerry may think that voters are ill-informed and will be swayed by your propaganda but even Kerry's economic advisors "say the number of jobs involved in outsourcing represents less than 1 percent of all U.S. jobs."
The Heritage Foundation has a list of Ten Myths about Jobs and Outsourcing that's worth reading if you're concerned about jobs being moved overseas.
I rechecked JustGoVote.org, which I'm assuming is the same group that's behind the phone calls. A blurb from their index page says, "Since the tragedy of 9/11 communities across the U.S. have been rocked by the Iraq War, terrorism, corporate and religious scandals, job and retirement issues, a weakening economy, and deep concerns about the direction our country is taking. If our Democracy is to prevail now more than ever every potential and qualified voter must turn to their neighbors and say...Just Go Vote."
When I first looked at the site, all but a small section was under construction. There isn't much more there now but they have added a "links" page. You would think that an organization that promotes voter registration and voting wouldn't still have the link to download a registration form still under construction.
Update: I got another call. This time from "Susan". She's worried about the high cost of drugs for the elderly. I tried to tell her to try the local high school but she wouldn't listen. She just kept going on about how her parents may not be able to afford their medications and how the evil government won't let them get the drugs from Canada.
Medicare can't negotiate for lower priced drugs from Canada but I don't think they can stop Susan's parents from doing so on their own. Susan didn't tell me why more of my tax money should be going to buy drugs for her parents. She also left out any mention that the Medicare Act of 2003 put some limitations on court delays of generic drugs and that the drug discount card gives a 30 to 60% discount off generic drugs. Susan is not a savvy shopper.
Update #2: Gloria Johnson, mother, called. Said she was a volunteer for Just Go Vote. Her issue is education. She said she made a mistake by not voting in the last election.
The NY Times article Kerry in a Struggle for a Democratic Base: Women begins with Kerry's recent efforts to connect with female voters.
These appearances are part of an energetic drive by the Kerry campaign to win back voters that Democrats think are rightfully theirs: women.
Them thar evil Republicans dun stole his wimmen-folk!
This is one of the (many) problems I have with his campaign. They believe they have a right to the votes of women and minority groups. It's all part of the bigger problem that the Democratic Party seems to have with confusing rights with privileges.
I also don't appreciate the implication that women decide whom to vote for based on emotion. It was not scenes from 9/11 that were shown at the RNC or the attack on a Beslan school nor was it "Kerry's failure to fight back against" Swift Boat Veterans' ads that decided my vote.
Do they really think I need to see photos from 9/11 or hear about terrorist attacks in the news to recognize the fact that we are vulnerable and will continue to be so as long as there is a group of people whose main goal is killing us?
I don't care if Kerry didn't fight back over the ads. I wouldn't really care what he did 30 years ago if there were some evidence that his opinions on America and her relations to other countries had changed since then. You know, I'm no more concerned about international opinion of us than I am about whether or not my neighbors think I'm a good parent. Either way you have to do what you think is right. The opinions of others may influence some of your decisions but they shouldn't dictate them.
last penultimate note, Mark Mellman, a pollster for the Kerry campaign, said that the campaign was not especially disturbed by the reduced support from women. "I don't define it as a problem,'' Mr. Mellman said. "I define it as an opportunity.''
Motivational cliches aren't going to help you now. Some problems are opportunites for growth and discovery. This is not one of those. This is a problem for Kerry. Learn the difference.
Final note, Kerry has had one opportunity to improve voters' opinion of him and he has ignored it. He should apologize to veterans for the remarks he made before Congress during his 1971 testimony.
The deadline for donating to the Bush/Cheney campaign has passed but you can still donate to the Republican National Committee and you can still volunteer to work for the campaign.
Blogs for Bush also recommends donating to an important Republican Senate campaign. This week's focus is on the South Dakota race between Tom Daschle (D) and John Thune (R). Thune "has a slight lead in the polls, but he's being vastly outspent by Daschle. If you can give $10, $25, or $100, this would be a good time to donate to Thune's campaign."
Texans for Truth have offered $50,000 for anyone who can prove President Bush fulfilled his service requirements in the National Guard.
I don't have $50,000 but I am willing to dig behind the couch cushions and offer whatever I find to anyone who can prove that a majority of likely voters cares very much about what was done (or not done) 30 years ago.
The $50,000 offer expires September 30 and requires more proof than the fact that Bush received an honorable discharge. The time limit for the award indicates to me that they care less about finding "truth" than they do about attracting media attention. Requiring more than the honorable discharge makes as much sense as asking a job applicant to bring 4+ years of class notes, report cards, and signed notes from all of their classmates and instructors saying that he/she was in class every day to a job interview while ignoring any information about his/her job history.
Texans for Truth was founded by Glenn W. Smith who is also the Director of the Texas online activist group, DriveDemocracy.org which was initially funded by MoveOn.org.
The ad shows former Alabama Guard pilot Bob Mintz saying, "It would be impossible not to be seen in a unit of that size." Esewhere he has said, ""I cannot say he was not there," Mintz said. "Absolutely positively was not there. I cannot say that. I cannot say he didn't do his duty."
He is also author of a book, The Politics of Deceit: Saving Freedom and Democracy from Extinction.
According to the synopsis one of the issues he discusses is "How the reliance on manipulative advertising leads to deceit".
It appears he does know about manipulative advertising.
I was watching TV earlier today. There was a piece about the upcoming election and American Legion members (Chillicothe, Ohio) were interviewed. The first said he planned on voting for Bush because of what he has done in the War on Terror. The second man said he would vote for Kerry because he had been in the military.
I guess he thinks the National Guard is just some club with really cool uniforms. I bet that will come as a surprise to some of his fellow Legionnaires.
A new ad by Swift Boat Veterans for Truth has a film clip from 1971 which shows a man throwing his military medals at the U.S. Capitol. (You can view the ad, Medals, online at the site.)
Over the image, a narrator says, "Symbols, like the heroes they represent, are meant to be respected. Some didn’t share that respect and turned their backs on their brothers."
The ad is directed at John Kerry, but the man shown in the clip, Frank Norton, "is infuriated that the anti-Kerry group is using his image, captured during a 1971 Vietnam Veterans Against the War demonstration, to represent vets who betrayed their military comrades. "
Norton, however, said he and other vets threw their medals away as a patriotic protest.
"We weren’t trashing our medals," he said. "Those things were symbolic of everything we had done, not only for our country, but for our brothers in arms over there.
"We said, ‘We’re going to give them back to our government, because we don’t think this is a just war.’ "
That's the thing with symbols, it's not just you who gets to decide what it means. When you take a symbol that has traditionally meant one thing (patriotism, pride in an achievement) and you decide to redefine its meaning, you can't get mad at everyone else who holds to the old symbolism.
Norton’s lawyer, Ricardo Teamor of Cleveland, said he sent an e-mail to the swift-boat Web site, saying the ad defames Norton and demanding that the group stop airing it.
The clip lasts for a second or two and Mr. Norton isn't identified in it.
Without this complaint, most of us would never have heard of him.
"Too many good OB/GYN's aren't able to practice their" - he paused a split second, as if searching for a word, then continued - "their love, with women all across this country," he said.
I think I understand exactly what he means. Maybe it's because Bush loves his job, he believes everyone is doing what they love. Doctors go to college and medical school because healing is their vocation. Rising medical insurance keeps the doctors from following this calling. They aren't just giving up a job, they're giving up doing what they love.
It's a good and valid point but it would be an understatement to say that the example he used wasn't the best choice.
Read more about problems with rising malpractice insurance costs in the Journal Gazette and Times-Courier series of articles.
Doctors: Rise in insurance costs forced them to cut back or quit
Did podiatrist's wrongs justify hefty malpractice lawsuit?
Illinois physicians say insurance rates are driving them out of state
I usually try to avoid reading opinion pieces in The Courier-Journal, not so hard to do since we dropped our subscription to the newspaper a couple of years ago.
Opinion pages in general bother me. I would like to see a byline attached or, if it's a group effort, all the names of the editors who hold that opinion. The way it is now strikes me as being akin to anonymous commenters in blogs. Let's call it wimping out on opinion.
Opinion sections which promote a strong bias, to either the right or the left without some counter balance, are troubling. Consider today's editorial:
This week's Republican gathering was a convention of anger.
But it was not a righteous anger directed toward a great injustice, with an aim of correcting a terrible wrong.
It was simply the result of a contemptible calculation by President Bush's campaign to seek political gain by expressing hatred of his opponents, while attacking their loyalty, and by suggesting that only Republicans are committed to protecting the country.
The Republicans' keynote speaker, Sen. Zell Miller, an apostate Democrat, virtually accused the Democratic ticket of treason for seeking to defeat Mr. Bush. (To be charitable, Sen. Miller increasingly seems unbalanced, and was so out of control after his speech that he said he wanted to challenge an interviewer to a duel.)
New York Gov. George Pataki placed blame for the 9/11 attacks on the Clinton administration for not anticipating them. (Gov. Pataki and Mr. Bush didn't provide warnings either.)
Vice President Dick Cheney said Mr. Bush "will never seek a permission slip to defend the American people." No one, and certainly not Sen. John Kerry, has said he would act in the nation's defense only with the approval of foreign leaders.
Part of the idea, of course, was to allow President Bush, in his prime-time acceptance speech, to appear moderate by comparison. It's a once-every-four-years thing.
But if Mr. Bush himself was short on vitriol, he was even shorter on truthfulness and accountability.
He persisted in the fiction that the misguided and bungled war in Iraq is part of a "whatever it takes" struggle against terrorism. He portrayed the legitimate war in Afghanistan as a clear success, even though al-Qaida and the Taliban are regrouping as the President's gaze is fixed on Iraq.
Curiously, he made no mention of Osama bin Laden or of why he hasn't been killed or captured. He said nothing about the menacing nuclear weapons programs of Iran and North Korea.
Nor did the President lay forth a strategy to overcome the leading domestic threat to the future of America's children: the massive deficit triggered by Mr. Bush's high-end tax cuts and failure to rein in federal spending. Indeed, he offered instead expensive new programs that would make a liberal blush.
But the lingering impression is not of the President or of his speech. It is of all that anger and vile oratory that preceded him.
Four years ago, Mr. Bush vowed to be a "uniter, not a divider." But his handlers have decided that if creating false camps of patriotic and disloyal Americans helps them politically, then division it will be.
And, sadly, that seems to be just fine with the President.
This doesn't describe the convention that I watched. They are right about there being anger, but the anger I see is from the liberal media and others on the left who can't stand to see the Bush campaign succeeding where the Kerry campaign is failing.
What hatred? Time after time, speakers said that Kerry's service in Vietnam was admirable. Disputing how honorable his actions after he returned home isn't hatred toward the man himself. Questioning whether his actions as a protestor, as lt. governor, and as a senator indicate how he would do as president isn't hatred any more than asking someone interviewing for a job about his past employment is a sign of hatred.
I don't remember anyone saying that only Republicans can protect our country. Republicans were stating our belief that George W. Bush will do a better job than John Kerry. There's a difference and it's sad that this editor can't see it.
"To be charitable, Sen. Miller increasingly seems unbalanced...." If that's "charity", heaven help us if they decide to say something mean.
I liked it when the vice-president repeated that George Bush will never seek a permission slip. The editor's opinion is that Kerry would not seek approval of foreign leaders. Is this the same Kerry who said, "I’d like to see our troops dispersed through the world only at the directive of the United Nations.”?
I don't agree that the war in Iraq was either misguided or bungled. Were there things that could have been done better? Of course, but could someone else, acting with the same knowledge, have done better? I doubt it.
When the president said, "Our strategy is succeeding. Four years ago, Afghanistan was the home base of al-Qaida...Today, the government of a free Afghanistan is fighting terror...", the editor interprets this as Bush saying the war was a clear success. Well, yes, so far it has been but "success" isn't a synonym for "end" which seems to be what the editor is implying.
"But the lingering impression is not of the President or of his speech." No, the lingering impression is going to be one of old media trying to force it's ideology on the public through half-truths and outright lies.
And, sadly, that seems to be just fine with the editor.
President George W. Bush was smart, funny, believable, and likable.
John Kerry's response demonstrated that he knows how to count to four but not to five. (And manages to look like an ass doing it.) I can't find the text of it online yet...does this mean that the media didn't think much of it either?
Oh, yeah, and the Republican balloon drop worked. If you were watching CNN at the end of the Democratic Convention, you would have seen convention producer Don Mischer shouting and using profanity when most of the balloons didn't drop.
"Stephen Jewett, a DNC official involved in podium operations, said there was no malfunction with the balloons. They were timed to come down slowly, 'for a longer ending, which was nice.'"
Sad when you feel you have to lie about something as relatively insignificant as a staging malfunction. I guess some habits are hard to break.
Duane posts in The Forest For The Trees with the source for Cheney's line in a speech last night saying, 'Senator Kerry began his political career by saying he would like to see our troops deployed "only at the directive of the United Nations.'"
He found the source for the information in an interview in the Harvard Crimson where Kerry said, "'I'm an internationalist. I'd like to see our troops dispersed through the world only at the directive of the United Nations.'"
Go read the rest. I'll wait....
Duane ends his post with:
Some people will claim that Kerry at 26 is not the same man as Kerry today. I would tend to agree. Kerry today is more nuanced, more polished and more "selective" in his delivery. The ideas are the same, only the delivery has changed.
It seems to me that Kerry chose to present his persona as The Vietnam Vet instead of The Senator. In essence, he's running as that 26-year-old man so when people respond to him as such, he has no one to blame but himself...although I'm sure he'll find a way to blame his campaign staff instead.
Not that he's happy when people question his senate career. Or talk about him being lieutenant governor. Notice how his bio on the waffles site doesn't mention who was governor at the time?
It's not surprising he chose the Vietnam vet image. Compared to the rest of his career, that was a time when he had the most attention. He was a darling of the media. He had senators fawning over him when he testified before the Committee on Foreign Relations. It was a golden time for him.
What a rude surprise it must have been for him to find that the vets he slandered are now home and have a voice with which to defend themselves. It was so much easier to call them names behind their backs.
Kerry tries to be a man of a thousand faces, something different for everyone. Unfortunately for him, he's the opposite of Lon Chaney (the original man of a thousand faces). Where Chaney covered a nice face with scarey make up, Kerry puts on a nice (nice being relative here) face to hide his not-so-nice past.
Tonight's Republican National Convention speakers include Mitch McConnell (Senator from Kentucky and husband of the next speaker), Secretary of Labor Elaine Chao, Michael Reagan, Sen. Zell Miller (D-GA), Lynne Cheney, and Vice President Dick Cheney.
There will be a tribute to President Ronald Reagan but because it's before the keynote speaker, I don't know if it will be televised on broadcast TV. It should be on C-SPAN. Check their site for the live Webcast.
Music will be by Brooks & Dunn.
The deadline for donating to the Bush/Cheney campaign has passed but you can still donate to the Republican National Committee and you can still volunteer to work for the campaign.
I've heard praise for Arnold Schwarzenegger's and Laura Bush's speeches and criticism for the speech by Jenna and Barbara Bush. I guess, compared to some of the others, their speech was fluff.
So what if it was all fluff? They said they aren't very political. They were cute and funny. Their love and respect for their parents and grandparents came across in their speech. That is pretty much all anyone should have asked or expected of them. I doubt I could have done any better at that age (and probably not as well). I'm not sure I could make a speech in front of a national audience now that I'm twice their age.
The broadcast networks are giving three hours to covering the Republican National Convention just as they gave three hours to the Democrat Convention. While this is fair, I believe they have already made a mistake on choosing which hours to air. Both John McCain and Rudy Giuliani spoke last night and both speeches were deserving of coverage.
If you weren't able to watch coverage last night, read the text of the speeches or watch the videos.
John Kerry has joined in the criticism of the president for remaining in a classroom reading with children after he learned of the 9/11 attacks. He has said:
"Had I been reading to children, and had my top aide whispered in my ear, 'America is under attack,' I would have told those kids very politely and nicely that the president of the United States had something that he needed to attend to, and I would have attended to it," Kerry said to cheers and applause.
Telling adults that you have something more important to attend to might work, but telling that to children? He either didn't spend much time with his daughters when they were young or he's forgotten what it's like. With normal kids, sitting and continuing what you're doing would end up being much quicker than the questions and chaos that would come from trying to leave early.
There is also the question of the president's security. After Columbine and other school shootings, most schools began locking all doors except for the main entrance. Staying in the classroom, whether by his choice or his security team's choice makes sense. I'm sure his schedule that morning was not secret. Keeping the president in a reasonably secure location while they made sure it was safe for him to leave would be logical. Why rush out of the classroom only to stand in the hall or another room? The country was under attack, why risk trying to move him when they didn't know whether he would be a target or not?
A good leader doesn't try to do everything by himself. He finds smart people who do their jobs well. He gives them the responsiblity and room to do those jobs. Kerry impresses me as someone who would think that only he is capable of handling a crisis and that his whole administration would crumble without his constant
micro-managing imput. What does he think he could have done with those seven minutes? Not much unless he thinks he's Superman and would have reversed the Earth's rotation to go back in time to prevent the attacks. Impossible, of course, the man's ego is too huge to leave room for an alter-ego.
When the phone rings I have to race our cats to try and get there first. I don't know why they are so attracted by the ringing. They've never gotten a phone call but always seem optimistic that the next call is for them. Or maybe it's because they've never had a call that they like it.
I should have let them answer the last call. It was a poll that was being conducted by an organization called ITC.
It was a short poll. Two questions. The first asked, if I have already decided who I'm voting for, will I vote for John Kerry and John Edwards (press one) or George Bush and Dick Cheney (press two). The second question was, if you're voting for John Kerry, are you voting to support the Democratic party (press one) or voting against George Bush (press two). (I don't recall the exact wording of the questions but this was the gist of it.)
I didn't answer the second question because I hadn't indicated that I was going to vote for Kerry after the first question. The robo-caller repeated the question two more times. Maybe it thinks Kerry supporters need extra time to find the one and two on the keypad.
What I thought was interesting about this was that there was no option for voters who are neither voting for the party or against Bush but are voting because they like the candidate. Note that I said it was interesting, not surprising.
I don't know who was behind this poll but whatever data they end up with is worthless. It was an automated call and I never spoke to a real person who could confirm that I'm a registered voter. If the replies are not all from registered voters, what's the value of it?
I'm not going to post an excerpt. It's all too good to pick just one part to quote.
(Link found via Drumwaster's Rants!)
My post about the Just Go Vote Foundation has generated several comments. I don't like phone calls like this because I resent the intrusion but I almost feel bad about complaining about my one call since some people reported receiving several of them.
Placing your number on the National Do Not Call Registry will stop most telemarketing calls, but not all. Because of limitations in the jurisdiction of the FTC and FCC, calls from or on behalf of political organizations, charities, and telephone surveyors would still be permitted, as would calls from companies with which you have an existing business relationship, or those to whom you've provided express agreement in writing to receive their calls.
While I'm not surprised that the politicians who drafted the Telemarketing Act did not ban calls from political organizations, I think they should have required these calls to follow the same guidelines as telemarketers: call only between 8:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m. (recipient's local time) and allow their phone number and name to be displayed on caller I.D.
I think the phone message for political calls should include whether or not they are affiliated with or support/are supported by any particular party and provide contact information for those of us who would like to be removed from their call list.
It bothers me that I can't find any information about the Just Go Vote Foundation. Encouraging people to vote is a good thing but their methods and the tone of their messages are questionable...enough so that it makes me wonder what their true motive is.
On a lighter note, click on "continue reading"...
Someone has thought of a way to make telemarketing work to our advantage.
The phone rings. I answer. There's a pause so I know it's an automated call and I should hang up but it's
not noon yet still very early in the day and my reflexes are slow.
It sounds as though the caller-bot tells me that he's with the JessCo Boat Foundation and his friend George has been in a wreck. Then he tells me how his friend has to go door-to-door asking people if they have weapons. He wonders if he will ever be able to sit and watch TV with George again.
Someone paid for the caller-bot phone calls so there has to be a message here somewhere.
Eventually my one working brain cell figures out that he's with the Just Go Vote Foundation and George is in Iraq. The call was to tell me to register to vote. (I'm already registered, have been for more years than I care to think about. My husband is also registered and my kids are too young to vote.) Does he think I should register again? Where does he think I live, Chicago? It was also to inform me that this election (I assume the presidential election) is important. No kidding, I would never have figured that out on my own.
If the idea is to encourage me to vote in a way that will make sure he and George are safe to sit and watch TV (always my top priority), then it's clear I need to vote to re-elect George Bush. Both he and the caller-bot's friend George are working to keep us safe. The caller-bot, on the other hand, is pestering me at home.
I checked several search engines for "Just Go Vote Foundation" and found nothing that tells me who they are. I had expected to find something since the "Do Not Call" list doesn't seem to apply to them. Anyone know who is behind this group?
Update: The September 2004 phone call from the Just Go Vote Foundation.
"I will say no." -- John Edwards, asked what he would say if he were offered the Vice Presidential nomination of his party, 2/01/04.
At least he will fit right in with the waffle campaign. If you don't like what either of them say, wait a few months. If the polls agree with what you want, you can be sure they will change their opinions too. Being open to differing ideas and opinions is a good thing but changing what you claim to believe to suit whomever you're speaking to doesn't tell me what you think.
Espousing the views of the majority is fine when it comes to day-to-day business. Because the president has to work with the House and the Senate, what the majority wants is (usually) what will happen anyway. I want to know what a presidential candidate really thinks. Knowing what a man thinks will give an indication of how he thinks. This will help me decide if he is the one I want making decisions if there is a crisis.
In November you will have a choice, president and vice-president who have shown true leadership or a pair who just echo back what you want to hear.
I know it's Thursday. I had an eye exam yesterday and my pupils were dilated. I couldn't see the monitor so, no blogging during the late morning through early afternoon. I spent the rest of the day doing things with the kids, so no blogging then either.
I think I'm making up for that today.
I was looking at the Senate voting records and had a hard time finding anything John Kerry had voted on. Funny thing is, the only people I've heard of complaining about his voting record are Republicans. Are the people of Massachusetts happier when he isn't doing his job? If so, I understand. I've worked with people who contributed more by not showing up than they ever did when they were present.
I know he doesn't want to give up his Senate seat before he knows the outcome of November's election...but if he's still getting his salary, that just seems ethically wrong to me.
See what others have to say, check out the links to all the Wictory Wednesday blogs in the extended entry.
Bush-Cheney '04 has made history by becoming the first campaign to have the support of more than one million contributors. Yesterday, the campaign had support from 1,006,565 contributors representing every county in every state across the country.
You can be a part of this grassroots support.
See what others have to say, check out the links to all the Wictory Wednesday blogs in the extended entry.
I know, I'm a day late...again.
Looking presidential doesn't make someone a good candidate for the job. It matters if you're casting a TV show or movie, but when you want to elect a leader of the country it's what the person does and says that counts more than how he looks or sounds.
See what others have to say, check out the links to all the Wictory Wednesday blogs in the extended entry.
I was thinking about the President; how his opponents mocked him for being uncultured, how there was talk of disloyalty because of his personal relationships with people aligned with the other side during the war, and how his fitness to serve as a wartime president was questioned because of his minimal military experience (especially compared to the Democratic candidate during his re-election campaign).
He was called a country bumpkin, several of his in-laws fought on the side of the Confederacy, and his opponent during his re-election campaign had military war experience. All of this and yet Lincoln was still re-elected.
The comparison I'm trying to make isn't between Bush and Lincoln, what I want to do is point out that the criticisms put forth by the opponents of both men were and are just distractions to keep people from paying attention to what's really important.
What really matters is recognizing a true leader.
Are they confusing the Catholic church with a fast food drive-through? "Have it your way". pick the sacraments you want, the way you want them. All the good feelings of being blessed and having received Communion with none of the bothersome stuff about repenting sins and trying not to repeat them.
Being a politician does not mean you are above the Church. A politician should follow what he or she believes. If that belief is different from the religion they have been practicing (or making a show of practicing) then they should seek a religion that more closely matches their beliefs, not insist that the Church make accommodations for them.
Pelosi, a San Francisco Democrat who was raised in a devout Italian Catholic home, told reporters, "I believe that my position on choice is one that is consistent with my Catholic upbringing, which said that every person has a free will and has the responsibility to live their lives in a way that they would have to account for in the end."
So she exercises her free will to support abortion. Her church believes that abortion is a sin worthy of excommunication. I wonder if she thinks she will have anything "to account for in the end". What if Jesus had done what was politically expedient or popular? We probably wouldn't be having this debate now....
Can I pick and choose which laws I want to obey? I mean, if they can profess a faith and still want to pick what beliefs of that faith they want applied to them, can I decide what laws of the government will apply to me?
Lo insto a ejercer su derecho como ciudadano de registrarse para votar y apoyar a nuestro Presidente. Puede hacerlo ahora mismo visitando Regístrese para votar. Las elecciones presidenciales de 2004 pudieran ser muy reñidas, tanto como las del 2000, y su voto es muy importante. Con el reto que enfrentamos de mantener próspera y segura a nuestro nación, hay demasiado en juego en las próximas elecciones. Haga sentir su voz registrándose para votar visitando Regístrese para votar..
For those of us without staff to cater to our wants and needs, a quick and easy recipe for waffles.
2 cups biscuit mix
1/2 cup oil
2 large eggs
1 cup club soda
In a large bowl, stir together biscuit mix, oil, and eggs. Add club soda, stirring until batter is blended.
Cook in a preheated waffle iron according to manufacturer's instructions.
Let's not end up a dollar short too.
Wednesday was my son's birthday. I spent the morning in bed recovering from a migraine (the two aren't related) and the rest of the day busy with other stuff so I totally forgot to post for Wictory Wednesday.
NOTE - I do have a warning to pass on. I followed a referral link from someone who had posted the Wictory Wednesday blogroll but was not listed on the blogroll. I ended up with some scum-sucking crap that infected my computer and took many hours to remove.
It was some junk that self installed then gave itself permission to download more garbage.
Bush/Cheney '4: Bush Cheney U - a section of the re-election site for college students.
The section on educational funding has information about the President's 2005 budget plans including reducing the interest rate on student loans for most borrowers and increasing the loan limits for first-year students. He has proposed increasing Pell Grant funding to $12.9 billion, a $856-million increase. Funding to colleges and universities with a large proportion of minority and disadvantaged students would be increased.
There's a Students for Bush Blog and what I consider one of the best things there...
The University of Louisville Cardinal! (Mascot Photos)
Yesterday John Kerry made a stop at Howard University to talk and answer questions from students. About 150 showed up to hear him speak. (University enrollment is over 10,000.)
"I personally do not believe that America is going to advance if we go backwards and look to reparations in the way that some people are defining them," Mr. Kerry told Aaron Nelson, 20, a junior political science major, who questioned the Democratic presidential hopeful on his stance.
Aaron? Howard is a university for women. The 150 students who came to hear him must have come from more than just this school.
The reports don't mention whether or not he was questioned about the lack of diversity in the higher levels of his campaign staff. Maybe it's enough that his wife has called herself African-American.
According to an AP article, the AFL-CIO will be spending $44 million
to coerce members on a get-out-the-vote effort this year. Their problem is that while the union leaders have endorsed Kerry, many of the union members prefer Bush.
A focus groups study suggested, "If possible, find more pictures of Kerry with working people and/or families to warm him up," to combat the senator's aloofness. "'Strength' pictures are also good to use." This is to counteract an AP-Ipsos poll in which Bush was picked 2 to 1 over Kerry as being the one who is better described as being a strong leader.
Another problem the AFL-CIO is facing is that Kerry wants to require US automakers to "increase our fuel economy standards to 36 miles per gallon by 2015." (Current standards are 27.5 m.p.g. of gasoline for cars and 21 m.p.g. for 2005-model light trucks.) Automakers say that this would disadvantage US companies and result in lost jobs. Even though the senator cosponsored legislation in 2002 to increase the standards and makes the same statement on his Web site, the AFL-CIO claims Kerry is still working through what the standards should be. Maybe it's just one more thing he's for until he's against it.
USA Today reports on a recent Google bombing.
They've nearly succeeded on the No. 2 search engine, Yahoo. By Sunday, eight days after the prank began, johnkerry.com was listed second among 703,000 results of a Yahoo search of the word "waffles."
At the No. 3 search engine, MSN Search, johnkerry.com was also the second Web page result of a search Sunday for "waffles."
Reading about waffles is making me hungry. Usually Kerry has the opposite effect.
2 large eggs
2 cups flour
1 3/4 cups milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil or melted butter/margarine
1 tablespoon brown sugar
4 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
Heat waffle iron.
Beat eggs in a large bowl until fluffy. Beat in flour, milk, oil, sugar, baking powder, and salt until smooth.
Pour 2/3 cup batter onto the center of the hot waffle iron. Close the lid.
Let cook for about five minutes or until steaming stops. Carefully remove waffle. Repeat with remaining batter.
Makes six 7" waffles.
"Guilty as Lt. Calley might have been of the actual act of murder, the verdict does not single out the real criminal. Those of us who have served in Vietnam know that the real guilty party is the United States of America." -- John Kerry, April 1971
To be fair, I searched for quotations from George W. Bush. I found all sorts of things he said. Some funny, some serious. The thing that struck me was that I couldn't find one negative thing he has said about America. It's not that he doesn't see any problems in the U.S., but instead of name calling he talks about constructive ways to improve things.
Kerry's style of placing blame on everyone else (even on things as mundane as a snowboarding mishap) may get attention from the press, but what kind of leader would that make him?
My first job after college was with a company which encouraged all employees to purchase its stock. The company would match a percentage of the employee's contribution towards stock purchase with the percentage amount increasing with tenure.
I've been a shareholder of that and a few other companies' stocks since then. According to the American Shareholders Association, "Two out of three voters in the 2004 elections will be investors." The group has done a study on John Kerry's record on investor issues.
Since winning the Democratic nomination Kerry has been claiming he has voted to reduce the capital gains tax. However, the ASA analysis could not find one example of Kerry voting to reduce the capital gains tax. He voted to increase the capital gains tax by 40 percent in 1986 and voted against reducing the capital gains tax at least 15 times since 1989.
Kerry called for abolishing the double tax of dividends in a speech on December 2, 2002 but as soon as President Bush proposed the same initiative one month later, Kerry quickly denounced the proposal and voted against it 7 times in 2003.
Sen. Kerry voted to remove the tax deduction for Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) in 1986 for families with incomes over $40,000 per year. He then voted against IRA expansion at least 10 times since then.
John Kerry thinks the government knows better than you do how to spend your money. If you disagree, make an investment that will help you keep more of what you earn. Volunteer or donate to the Bush/Cheney '04 campaign.
Find out how much John Kerry's campaign promises would cost, his tax plan, the tax gap, and a list of plans he has promised where the cost is unknown.
C-SPAN Road to the White House covers the 1971 testimony of John Kerry before the U.S. Senate.
(Tipped off to broadcast by Florida Cracker.)
Bush-Cheney '04 released a new television ad entitled “Troops” that began running in West Virginia yesterday. The theme is that Kerry voted for war, then voted against funding it. Read the script of the ad and the supporting facts on the Bush/Cheney Website.
Kerry said Republicans were "going to start attack ads tonight" that ignored important matters facing the nation, such as jobs, education, the environment and "making America safer." Kerry added, "They can't talk about those things, because George Bush doesn't have a record to run on. He has a record to run away from."
I really shouldn't be surprised by now by what Kerry says, he seems to live in a world of his own creation. It's the Just-For-Kerry-world where he can attack others but no one should be allowed to respond. He can talk about what he thinks others are doing wrong without offering a plan of his own. When pressed, he can't say what he would do in a given situation, we just have to trust him that if he were president he would become omniscient and would know what to do.
If you watch or listen to the ads, you might notice one difference between them and Kerry's statements. The ads attack Kerry's proposals and campaign promises. While Kerry hasn't been shy about attacking decisions and policies of the current administration, he goes further and makes personal attacks.
The ads are available for preview on the Bush/Cheney site.
"I've met foreign leaders who can't go out and say this publicly, but boy, they look at you and say, 'You've got to win this, you've got to beat this guy, we need a new policy, things like that.' " - John Kerry
Senator Kerry, just when did you meet with these leaders? At what time since you announced your candidacy did they look at you and say this? I couldn't find anything about a meeting between you and any foreign leader. (CNN couldn't find anything and your own staff were unable to provide the names of any foreign leaders who have met with you during the last 12 months.) When Gerhard Schroder came to Washington last month, he deliberately avoided meeting with you. He has also denied that he was one of the "foreign leaders" who communicated with you. "A French foreign ministry official, who asked not to be identified,concurred: 'Things might feel better, but they might not be better.'"
Not that I doubt you do have support from several leaders, I'm sure it means nothing that most of them seem to be oppresive, terrorism-supporting regimes.
The newspaper says John Kerry will be the U.S. Democratic Party's candidate for President in 2004. Kim Jong Il gets on the phone to Kerry's campaign headquarters to ask, "Is there anything I can do to help?"
Below is a list of bloggers who support the re-election of President Bush. I doubt if there's a single "foreign leader" among them, just a group of people who know that Bush's support comes from the ones who matter in a Presidential election, Americans.
Some families of the victims of the Sept. 11 terrorist attack are angered at President Bush for using campaign commercials that showed images of ground zero, accusing him of using the attack for his own political gain.
"It's a slap in the face of the murders of 3,000 people," Monica Gabrielle, whose husband died in the twin towers, told the Daily News in Thursday editions. "It is unconscionable."
Two of the three ads (Tested and Safer, Stronger) show a very brief image of an American flag flying at the scene of the World Trade Center destruction. None of the ads dwell on this image and in each of the two ads, the image is one of many. Still, it is the one image that is most likely to evoke an emotional response.
The horror of September 11 can not be ignored or forgotten and the leadership Bush has shown in fighting terrorism is a key part of his Presidency. The ads are upbeat, focusing on Bush and the accomplishments of this administration. Kerry had anti-Bush ads from the beginning of the primaries yet he warns of an upcoming Republican smear campaign. I don't expect Bush to refrain from attack ads throughout the campaign but making this accusation before any ads like that are aired sounds like projection.
In psychoanalytic theory, a mechanism of defense in which various forbidden thoughts and impulses are attributed to another person rather than the self, thus warding off some anxiety.
From the GOP Team Leader site:
Republican National Committee Chairman Ed Gillespie will hold a news conference to kick off National Voter Registration Week from the helm of a 56-foot 18-wheeler that will be parked out in front of RNC headquarters on Wednesday, March 3 at 11:30 a.m. The 18-wheeler, designed expressly for registering voters, is fully equipped with interactive multimedia capabilities, Xbox systems, a sound stage and much more. With a goal of registering 1 million voters across America from March 6 - March 13, this innovative grassroots effort is the largest voter registration drive in the history of Republican Party. National Voter Registration Week is part of the RNC’s unprecedented commitment to registering 3 million voters by Election Day 2004.
Today is Wictory Wednesday when bloggers (see the list below) ask readers to do something to support the Bush/Cheney re-election campaign. Sometimes people want to volunteer to help but aren't sure what they can do or their schedules may not allow them to commit a lot of time to a new project. This week, ask friends, family, and co-workers if they are registered to vote. This won't take much time and you will be doing a favor for those who have forgotten to register or weren't sure how to do it. You can print out a registration form (.pdf) that also has each state's registration laws, address, and deadlines. (You can also use a search engine to find registration forms for your state.) This along with other information about the electoral college and elections can be found on the Teacher's Tools page of the Reggie Website.
Miller's Time has parsed Kerry's speech. Read it for a translation of what Kerry said and what he really means.
John Kerry paints himself as a dimwit and hypocrite, but Democrats voting in their party's primaries are taking to it like flies. He voted for the war in Iraq but was hoodwinked by the Bush administration; it actually went to war. He voted for NAFTA and is shocked that it has sped the evolution of international trade. He rails against special privilege, married as he is to ketchup heiress Teresa Heinz.
Kerry's latest: American companies planning to ship jobs overseas must first inform the government and the affected workers. OK, then what?
He says this provides a level playing field. How?
The best we can figure is it gives time to the politicians and public opinion to work mischief against a business decision to cut costs, which would free up capital to create new and better jobs at home.
Folks, it is crunch time. If we are to be a nation of innovators and entrepreneurs, then we must lead and not follow.
But leadership is expensive, perhaps the most expensive of all human endeavors. There are titanic economic forces loose in the world. We can ride the wave, or sink to the bottom.
That's why this newspaper rails incessantly against public schools that shortchange future workers. But they're part of the Kerry prescription.
Isn't it clear by now? Success will demand a commitment to competitive excellence that John Kerry's small mind cannot grasp.
From a May, 2002 Boston Globe article:
''John is like a first date,'' said one former staffer. ''He's very likable at first glance. But then you find out your date is not paying enough attention, or not thinking about you and is not really around.''
Michael Barone, editor of The Almanac of American Politics and a senior writer for U.S. News & World Report, puts it a little differently: ''This is a man whose world is Louisburg Square, Nantucket, and Georgetown. His demeanor comes across as a person who has a certain amount of contempt for those who do not share his views. They must simply be ignorant or foolish. If he runs for president, I think this is something he has to work on.''
He talks to people and makes it sound as if his concerns are all about them. Don't be fooled, it's all Just For Kerry.
President Bush is coming to Louisville today. He will be speaking about the economy to workers at ISCO Industries and then attend a fund-raising luncheon at the Galt House East.
Update: During the visit to ISCO, the owner and a few employees talked about how they have seen improvements in the economy and how it has effected the business by allowing them to expand and invest more money in the company. They also talked about how tax credits have allowed them to make purchases or save towards their children's college education. Bush said that by letting people make the decision of what to do with their money, it was better spent than it would have been by Washington.
ISCO is a family-owned business and a discussion of that brought one of the best comments. Bush said, "I love family-owned businesses. Nothing wrong with a son trying to follow in his father's footsteps."
In a speech to the Republican Governors Association, President Bush said:
Come November, the voters are going to have a very clear choice. It's a choice between keeping the tax relief that is moving the economy forward, or putting the burden of higher taxes back on the American people. It is a choice between an America that leads the world with strength and confidence, or an America that is uncertain in the face of danger. The American people will decide between two visions of government: a government that encourages ownership and opportunity and responsibility, or a government that takes your money and makes your choices.
In January 2004, fifty-thousand Americans contributed for the first time to the re-election campaign for George W. Bush. They made the choice to join hundreds of thousands of other Americans who have donated to the Bush/Cheney campaign because they see something in the leadership of our president that they don't see in any of the Democratic candidates. You have a choice too. If you want to see America continue to move forward with strength and pride, donate or volunteer for the Bush 2003 campaign.
Here's a suggestion for the Democrats. You need to have an animal run for president. (Not a rat.) The other day I mentioned a woman who said she would vote for a gerbil over Bush. This morning, I read about this woman.
In Washington state, Maria Yurasek says she'd vote for a dog if it could beat President Bush.
This was from an article about people who hate the president. I'll be the first to admit I don't understand their hatred, but I will agree it is intense.
"I've never seen a Democratic Party more unified and more focused, and the anger helps do just that," said GOP pollster Frank Luntz. "The intensity level is just so high. They're using four-letter words to describe him."
In a recent focus group that Luntz conducted for MSNBC, technicians had to adjust the volume levels because the Bush-haters were "so gosh-darn loud" they were drowning out the president's supporters, who were more numerous, Luntz said. "It was a real problem."
I'll assume the "four-letter words" weren't "good" or "hero" (ones I would use.) Disagreement is one thing, showing a total lack of class is another. I thought Clinton was an immoral slimeball but I wouldn't have gone shouting it to his face. Respect the office even if you don't respect the man.
John McAdams, a political scientist at Marquette University, said resentment of Bush is particularly strong among liberals, who already hold three things against him: "First, he's a conservative. Second, he's a Christian. And third, he's a Texan. When you add all of those things up, that invokes pretty much every symbol of the cultural wars."
"It's particularly galling when somebody who mangles his syntax and doesn't pronounce words extremely well and is from Texas beats you," McAdams added.
This by a party that says it promotes tolerance and wants to remove class distinctions. So why then is mispronunciation of words in a New England dialect superior to that of Texas? Sounds like elitism to me.
I haven't written anything because I had a migraine on Friday followed by beal on Saturday. I'm using Susie's word "beal" rather than "ennui" because the problem wasn't that I wasn't interested in anything, I still read the news and visited blogs. I just couldn't summon the mental energy needed to comment on anything.
The first news article I read today was about Kerry's letter to Bush.
As you well know, Vietnam was a very difficult and painful period in our nation's history, and the struggle for our veterans continues. So, it has been hard to believe that you would choose to reopen these wounds for your personal political gain. But, that is what you have chosen to do.
It wasn't Kerry's military service that was being questioned but his record since then. Some people have problems reading/listening for content.
My next visit was to ScrappleFace, just to make sure that some news service hadn't picked up a post from there by mistake. Kerry complaining about Republicans bringing up 30-year-old history for political gain seemed too ironic to be true.
He continues to reinvent his self-image and the current one is as a war hero. It's as if nothing else should matter. He reminds me of the guy who was the star of his high school football team and still brags about it twenty or thirty years later because he hasn't done anything worthwhile since then.
A 2001 Meet the Press interview with John Kerry has this quotation from 1971:
MR. CROSBY NOYES (Washington Evening Star): Mr. Kerry, you said at one time or another that you think our policies in Vietnam are tantamount to genocide and that the responsibility lies at all chains of command over there. Do you consider that you personally as a Naval officer committed atrocities in Vietnam or crimes punishable by law in this country?
KERRY: There are all kinds of atrocities, and I would have to say that,
yes, yes, I committed the same kind of atrocities as thousands of other
soldiers have committed in that I took part in shootings in free fire
zones. I conducted harassment and interdiction fire. I used 50 calibre
machine guns, which we were granted and ordered to use, which were our only
weapon against people. I took part in search and destroy missions, in the
burning of villages. All of this is contrary to the laws of warfare, all of
this is contrary to the Geneva Conventions and all of this is ordered as a
matter of written established policy by the government of the United States
from the top down. And I believe that the men who designed these, the men
who designed the free fire zone, the men who ordered us, the men who signed
off the air raid strike areas, I think these men, by the letter of the law,
the same letter of the law that tried Lieutenant Calley, are war criminals.
Some of his actions may have been heroic, these weren't. Blaming "the men who designed these, the men who designed the free fire zone, the men who ordered us" sounds like the Nuremberg defense (I was only following orders).
Read the rest to see how his views changed over 30 years.
The Student Movement Coordination Committee for Democracy in Iran is an organization of students inside and outside of Iran, as well as Iranian professionals, who share a vision of a free, independent, democratic, secular and industrialized Iran. For Presidents' Day they wrote a letter to President Bush, a copy of that letter is on their Website.
February 12, 2004
The Honorable George W. Bush
President of the United States of America
The White House
Fax: (202) 456-2461
Dear Mr. President:
On behalf of the Iranian Student Movement and the Iranian Diaspora around the World, especially our oppressed countrymen, we extend our sincerest appreciation for your leadership and efforts to promote long term peace and democratic rule in the World. We also want to use this opportunity to express, once again, our deepest gratitude for your consistent and open support of our people in their quest for true freedom and democracy.
Indeed, your tireless support of our subjugated and tyrannized people has touched millions of Iranians and they view you as an ardent defender of freedom and a source of hope. As one of the few world leaders that fully appreciates and openly supports the aspirations and goals of our subjugated country, we extend our thanks. Let us assure you, as you plan for the conquest of Mars, that you have already succeeded in conquering the hearts and souls of millions of Iranians. It is, therefore, imperative that you are re-elected this November, and you can count on our constant support, and votes, in the upcoming election.
Mr. President, in less than three centuries, America has become the beacon of hope and support for people worldwide seeking freedom and democracy. Embedded in your actions to free the oppressed is, we believe, a deep seated moral basis that is a reflection of America's founding fathers objectives. The moral fiber that you and many of the people in your administration represent is the same democratic principals that the people of Iran desperately want and need. Serving as a model for the world to emulate, America, you, and most of your administration provides inspiration and hope for the future of Iran.
Go read the rest of the letter.
(Found via World Inquiry)
John Kerry asked why President Bush tried to cut the pay of our troops in Iraq yet it was Kerry who voted against military pay raises time after time.
Under former President Clinton, military pay decreased an average of almost 2% per year relative to Consumer Price Index. Since President Bush took office, military pay increased an average of 5.2% per year relative to Consumer Price Index.
Which message do you think you're more likely to have heard on the evening news?
A top New York supporter of Massachusetts Senator John Kerry is saying that the candidate told him he made a "mistake" when he named former president Jimmy Carter or former secretary of state James Baker as possible Middle East envoys in a December speech at the Council on Foreign Relations.
New York Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver said Kerry told him that he never intended to name the men in the speech, and that Kerry had blamed the insertion of the names on a staff mistake.
Add one more thing to the long list of things that Kerry and I would not see eye-to-eye on. A good manager/boss/leader credits his employees/staff/followers with accomplishments and takes the blame for all mistakes.
(Link to article via Kausfiles.)
"This is not a time for photo opportunities, it is a time to create real opportunities in America," he (John Kerry) told a town hall meeting at Northcentral Technical College in Wausau, Wisconsin, after touring a laboratory and posing for photographs with a 40-pound aluminum slab into which a computer-control machine tool etched the words "Wisconsin Backs Kerry in 2004."
The time to complain about another politician's photo op is not during your own and ridiculing Bush's visit to the Daytona 500 is probably not the best way to gain favor with the NASCAR Dads.
It sounds like sour grapes to me. Bush is being cheered by race fans, Kerry is touring a two-year college's lab. Bush gets his picture taken while wearing a racing jacket, Kerry gets his taken while wearing protective goggles. You may not like the president's photo ops but you have to admit he does a better job at picking them than does the senator (and looks better while doing it.)
"This is not going to go away," one American friend of Miss Polier said yesterday. "What actually happened is much nastier than is being reported."
John Kerry has said there is no truth to the rumor. Whatever. Let's discuss his votes to cut defense spending and to raise taxes instead. He can tell us why he sponsored a bill to cut $1.5 billion from the CIA budget for intelligence gathering. He says he "wanted the CIA to devote more money to human intelligence and less to technical means ." I don't see how cutting the budget will achieve that and one of the reasons for inaccurate pre-war intelligence was due to misleading reports from people who had left, or wanted to leave, Iraq. Let's talk about "standing up to" special interests.
Check out the website of Kerry's opponent, Michael Cloud, in the last (2002) senate race for his thoughts about the senator from Massachusetts.
While the documents about President Bush's National Guard service may not put an end to questions, they do contain some interesting quotations. (From The New York Times)
In November 1970, the commander of the Texas Air National Guard, Lt. Col. Jerry B. Killian, called Mr. Bush, then 24, "a dynamic outstanding young officer" who stood out as "a top-notch fighter interceptor pilot" mature beyond his age.
"Lt. Bush's skills far exceed his contemporaries," Colonel Killian wrote in recommending that Mr. Bush be promoted to first lieutenant. "He is a natural leader whom his contemporaries look to for leadership. Lt. Bush is also a good follower with outstanding disciplinary traits and an impeccable military bearing."
I'm fairly tired of this whole thing. I believe he fulfilled his duties then but whether he did or not is a non-issue for me. I don't think that he should have to produce evidence in his defense. (I feel the same way about Kerry and the accusations made against him.) The burden of proof should be on the ones making the charges.
The only part of Bush's military service history that is of any interest to me now is how he has served in his most recent position, Commander-In-Chief. Under his leadership, our military freed millions of Iraqis from a brutal regime. His actions have influenced changes in countries including Libya, Iran, and Pakistan. Sounds like a damned good service record to me.
The Drudge Report claims Time magazine, ABC News, the Washington Post, The Hill, and the Associated Press are all investigating rumors of an affair Kerry had with a campaign intern. (Link first found via Paul.)
It's already creating a buzz on the John Kerry forum. The most popular theory there so far seems to be that the Clintons are behind the rumor so Hillary can step in and "save" the party. The Dean forum seems
a bit happier ecstatic about the news. More than a few posts there also wonder if the Clintons are behind this.
How bad is it when people from your own party assume you're (the Clintons) behind this news?
Mentioned on the Dean forum:
"Inside Track" reports, Kerry's "secret life" is "splashed on the cover of this week's National Enquirer." But while details "are a big yawn for longtime Kerry watchers, the rest of the country may find it rather entertaining!" The "Special Enquirer Investigation" starts "with an old galpal's claim that "Kerry "is so vain, he 'always wanted to make love where he could see himself in the mirror.'"
I really didn't need to know about the mirror thing.
Today is Wictory Wednesday. Every Wednesday, dozens of bloggers ask their readers to volunteer and/or donate to the Bush 2004 campaign.
You can volunteer at the Bush/Cheney '04 site. All they ask you to do once you sign up is to write letters to your area newspaper editors, call radio talk shows, and to send emails to friends to recruit them as volunteers or ask them to register to vote. The best part is you don't have to wear an orange hat like the Dean volunteers in Iowa wore! Another option for volunteering is to contact your local GOP headquarters and volunteer there.
Anti-Bush organizations have claimed to plan on spending $400 to $500 million dollars to promote their agenda. This is above and beyond what the Democratic candidate will spend on his campaign. Donate to the Bush/Cheney campaign fund and support the man that the terrorists don't want to see re-elected.
I was reading an article about how John Kerry's request of an annulment of his first marriage to Julia Thorne had upset her. I can see why it took her by surprise, they were separated in 1984, divorced in 1988, but it wasn't until a few years later that she received a letter from the Church notifying her that Kerry was asking for their marriage to be annulled.
Anyway, that's just background to what I really wanted to say. Reading that article led me to others, some of which mentioned that during his time between wives Kerry dated Morgan Fairchild.
I can't help it. When I read that I could hear Jon Lovitz's SNL character (Tommy Flanagan) the pathological liar saying, "Yeah, that's the ticket."
I'm not implying that I think Kerry is a pathological liar when I link him with that charater. Pathological liars are compelled to tell lies even when the lies serve no purpose. Kerry on the other hand simply changes his idea of what truth is according to what is politically best for him.
The legend of Diogenes says that he walked through the marketplace of Athens in broad daylight, with a lantern, looking for an honest man.
Michael Reagan offers some comments on John Kerry. He agrees that Kerry's war record is impressive but calls his post-war activities "shameful". The media ignore this while letting Kerry and Terry McAuliffe get away with questioning Bush's service record.
Look at it this way. Suppose the Republicans were to compare Kerry's activities when as a war hero he came home and turned on his country to those of another genuine war hero who also turned on his country after heroically serving it.
Can you imagine how the media would react if the Republicans were to compare the turncoat hero's record to John Kerry's, a war hero who also turned on his country and gave aid and comfort to the enemy.
If they so much as mentioned the name of Benedict Arnold - the wounded hero of the Battles of Freeman's Farm and Saratoga that destroyed a British army and eventually helped win the Revolutionary War, and then betrayed his country - in the same breath with John Kerry, the media would go crazy. They would rightly say that it would be a vicious slander. But no Republican would even think of doing such a vicious and slanderous thing.
Just as it is now a vicious and slanderous lie to suggest that George W. Bush, the Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces served less than honorably while in the Air National Guard thirty years ago.
I would never slander Benedict Arnold by comparing him with Kerry.
I had seen the page where Amazon is processing donations to political candidates about a week or so ago. At that time the only ones you could donate to through it were the Democratic and third party candidates, the Bush donation feature was still pending so I didn't bother posting the link to it.
This morning I saw a post on Instapundit:
THIS IS INTERESTING: You can donate to Presidential candidates, not just bloggers, via Amazon now. You can see how much each has raised, too. Bush is currently way behind Kerry, Clark, and Edwards. Here's an easy "horserace" item for bored political journalists!
I'm not surprised that the donations to Bush are less than the other candidates, his link has only been up for three days while the others have been there for a week longer. The average amount for each donation to Bush has been $44.55 while the next highest average is a virtual tie between Edwards ($36.58) and Kerry ($36.21). Other donation averages are: Clark ($29.27), Dean ($28.83), and Kucinich ($19.61).
You can also shop at the George W. Bush store on his website. Who doesn't need some leather coasters?
From the Detroit Free Press - Michigan's caucus is Saturday but you wouldn't know it from the attention, or lack thereof, that it's getting from the candidates. Clark and Edwards "wrote off campaigning in Michigan before Saturday's caucuses to focus on Tennessee and Virginia primaries Tuesday."
Polling of likely caucus voters show that Kerry, who will spend only Friday in Michigan, has the greatest amount of support (58%). When you have that much of a (potential) lead, I guess you can take the state for granted.
Best quotations in the article are:
"You can't diss us in the winter and expect to come back and kiss us in the fall," he (Rev. Wendell Anthony, president of the Detroit branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People) said.
(Edwards)"Skipping a visit to Michigan is a mistake. The populist message for the black community and his focus on issues appeals to young, college-educated women," said Sarpolus.
Edwards' (the Breck girl) appeal to young women is because of his focus on issues? I would agree, to the same degree that Britney Spears' appeal to young men is due to her singing talent.
Online News Hour has a list of questions on 14 issues that they asked the Democratic primary candidates. You can either read the list of questions with each candidate's answers or take a quiz that shows only the question and answers without showing who each answer belongs to. The point of the quiz is to "Learn about the candidates through their platforms, not their personalities."
I tried to take the quiz but didn't get past the first question (the order the questions come in is random). There was no choice labeled "none of the above".
Donate any amount you can ending in 4. $4, $14, $24, $54, $64, $104…. whatever you can.
We can’t let the Democrats take the White House. Donate today!
Do it now while you're thinking about it. It will only take a few minutes. The blogs, news, and other websites will still be here waiting for you.
Weary of hearing about a war that we withdrew from thirty years ago, that is.
First there were comparisons of the war in Iraq with the Vietnam war. Yes, both were foreign wars and in both the enemy used/uses civilians as combatants. The similarities end there. The purpose and the handling of the two wars differs greatly.
Currently Kerry, who by the way served in Vietnam, is touting his experience as proof of something. I'm not really sure what it proves. His war record is compared to Dean's (went skiing), Bush's (National Guard), and Edwards' (too young to serve). The pissing contest between Kerry and Clark regarding who did what/was wounded more often seems to be a draw.
It's been almost 30 years since we withdrew. How someone handled the call to service is interesting as background information. It may give some insight into what type of person they were and how they faced a challenge three decades ago. It doesn't tell me much about who they are today. I've changed since then, I would be concerned about anyone who hadn't. If you are the same person with the same views and opinions when you reach middle age as you were when you were in your teens or twenties, you need to get out more.
What I do want to know is, are you going to keep me, my family, and my country safe? How much of my money do you plan to take in taxes? What I want to know about is the here and now. Talk about the past just makes me think you have nothing more recent to offer.
I'm not saying that the Vietnam war is insignificant to anyone who remembers it. I still keep my VIVA POW/MIA bracelet in my desk drawer. (It wasn't until a couple of years ago, thanks to the Internet, that I was able to find out what happened to the man whose name is on my bracelet.) I'm just saying it shouldn't be a main issue of this campaign.
Rich Lowry wrote an opinion piece discussing John Edwards' rhetoric about "two Americas" and John Kerry's talk of "the economy of privilege."
Edwards and the other Democrats deserve credit for focusing attention on the least fortunate, who are often forgotten in the rush of both parties to shovel government benefits at middle-class voters, especially if they happen to be elderly. Unless Democrats offer serious solutions to poverty, however, the poor only serve as props for their moral vanity.
Indeed, Democrats on the stump implicitly argue that if only more former Enron executives would be thrown in jail, the downtrodden would magically be lifted into affluence. This is preening nonsense. We know what causes poverty. It has nothing to do with corporations, and little to do even with other, more-relevant economic factors, such as wage rates.
Lowry argues that the problems of poverty are cultural ones, "driven by a shattered work ethic and sexual irresponsibility."
"(T)he typical poor family with children is supported by only 800 hours of work annually, or about 16 hours a week. This number holds in good economic times and bad, because it is a factor of attitudes toward work rather than the availability of jobs." Not many people can make a living on just 16 hours of work a week. A 40-hour work week at minimum wage along with the aid programs that are already available will be enough to bring 75% of poor children out of poverty.
"The other cause of child poverty is single parenthood...Again, economic factors are secondary. The average father of a child born out of wedlock is making $17,000 a year." We're fortunate that women in our country can decide when, or if, they want to marry and whether or not to have children. The problem comes when you take advantage of the right without exercising any responsibility.
(I)f you're not talking abut how to increase work and marriage among the poor, well then, you're not serious about addressing poverty. You're just some guy with pretty hair saying pretty words because you like the way they sound.
MSNBC has a Newsweek poll that asks for opinions on the Democratic candidates and whether or not Bush should serve another term.
Go add your vote.
This is my favorite excerpt:
Some critics have said our duties in Iraq must be internationalized. This particular criticism is hard to explain to our partners in Britain, Australia, Japan, South Korea, the Philippines, Thailand, Italy, Spain, Poland, Denmark, Hungary, Bulgaria, Ukraine, Romania, the Netherlands, Norway, El Salvador, and the 17 other countries that have committed troops to Iraq. As we debate at home, we must never ignore the vital contributions of our international partners, or dismiss their sacrifices. From the beginning, America has sought international support for operations in Afghanistan and Iraq, and we have gained much support. There is a difference, however, between leading a coalition of many nations, and submitting to the objections of a few. America will never seek a permission slip to defend the security of our people.
Shots of the audience added interest. I was concerned about Hillary Clinton at one point...the look on her face made me want to sign her up for a free sample of Metamucil. The next time the camera focused on her she was smiling. Must just have been gas pains earlier.
Madeleine Albright, who was sitting on Hillary's left, just looked sour and pissy. Must be rough to hear what this administration is doing and know that part of the reason is that you failed to do your job properly. Or maybe it was just something in the air.
There were theatrics from Ted Kennedy who was either rolling his eyes, shaking his head, or just fidgeting (rubbing his jowls). The world of (over)acting and the world of politics have both suffered a loss by his choice of careers.
Andrew Sullivan writes, "The Iowa voters - not exactly centrists - picked Kerry and Edwards to be the anti-Dean candidate, and the shrillness of the Dean-Clark message (the shrillness that so appealed to Paul Krugman) was just as soundly rejected. Good news for the Dems - and the country."
According to an opinion column in the Des Moines Register, this shouldn't be a surprise. "Centrists win. Despite the knock on the Iowa Democratic caucuses as being dominated by a pack of liberals, caucus-goers have historically chosen candidates more toward the center of the spectrum. That tradition continued Monday."
Sen. John F. Kerry (Mass.) took a strong lead in partial results from the Iowa caucuses over Sen. John Edwards of North Carolina, who was running a surprisingly close second in the first major contest to determine the Democratic Party's presidential nominee.
With 67 percent of the state's precincts reporting, Kerry led Edwards by 37 percent to 33 percent. Running third in the early results was former Vermont governor Howard Dean with 18 percent, followed by Rep. Richard A. Gephardt (Mo.) with 11 percent. Two other candidates -- Rep. Dennis J. Kucinich (Ohio) and New York activist Al Sharpton -- drew scant support.
Earlier in the day, Dean told news media to "get a new life."
With the start of the Iowa Caucus only hours away, the former Vermont governor arrived at the Iowa Historical Museum for the State of Iowa King remembrance.
Dean, who was not scheduled as one of the speakers, arrived with the national and local media waiting. The event had been posted on the media roster by his campaign.
After Dean’s bus pulled in at about 10:30 a.m., he circled the large building, just blocks from the golden-domed capital, as hordes of press and orange-capped Dean “storm troopers” followed in tow in the subfreezing weather.
When Dean finally made his way into the building, chaos ensued - although nothing out of the ordinary for the kick off of a closely contested caucus race.
“Dean came here and he was hoping that his henchmen would get the job done," said 26-year-old Seville Lee, who heads a mentoring program for at-risk youth in Des Moines. "He thought he was going to speak."
“I’m offended that Dean would even try and do this,” said Lee, who organized a children’s play that day in honor of King. “He wasn’t scheduled to speak.
"If he wanted to come he could go sit down like everyone else.”
After Dean entered the packed auditorium with a mostly black audience of about 300 people, the former Iowa front-runner took a seat in the front row for about five minutes.
..."You know why I wasn’t able to attend this event,” Dean said, “because you guys are behaving so badly you’ve got to get a new life.”
Upbraiding the media, Dean told the press: “I’m feeling great, we’re going to win but you guys got to behave yourselves out of respect for Dr. King.”
Blaming the media for the commotion of his arrival, Dean refused to answer any more questions.
If you travel with a circus, expect to get attention. What I want to know is, how did he manage to get a front row seat? Why not go alone and sit in the back? Arrogant behavior from a man who wants to educate me about race.
Dick Gephardt has a website, DeanFacts.com, has quotations and comments showing Howard Dean's position on issues.
"The way to balance the budget, [Vermont Gov. Howard] Dean said, is for Congress to cut Social Security, move the retirement age to 70, cut defense, Medicare and veterans pensions, while the states cut almost everything else. "It would be tough but we could do it," he said."
"[Medicare is] one of the worst things that ever happened... a bureaucratic disaster... You'd destroy the health care system in this country if you had Medicare for everybody."
"I still think NAFTA was a good thing."
You know, I think we ought to look at affirmative action programs based not on race, but on class, and opportunity to participate. (Even Dean can say something that makes sense occasionally.)