Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Stephen Strauss takes a look at big science and comes away unimpressed. He talks about two exhibits he saw. One for the $15 billion ITER (pronounced EATER - heh) and another about neolithic technology - mat weaving, pottery making, chipping stone axes.
At the recent European Science Open Forum conference in Barcelona, for example, I was strolling through exhibits aimed at — please don't gag — science outreach. The underlying theme of all these displays seemed to me to be: since their schooling actually teaches many ordinary people to be discomforted by — if not to actually fear and loath — science, let's see if we can't do something in these venues to get people to hate science a little bit less.And why do people hate science so much? Well it is hard to understand and requires a lot of complicated math and difficult concepts. I'm pretty good with that sort of thing. I understand Einstein but the math is beyond me. String Theory? Fuhgeddaboutit. So how about neolithic technology?
Right across from ITER was an exhibit in which a group of paleo-archeologists had set up a display to show the technology of the past in operation. So you had a guy sitting cross-legged, banging away at a rock to make a hand ax. Chip, chip, and chip. You had someone else weaving plants together to make a mat. Weave, weave, and weave. Someone else was taking clay and making a pot. There was no placard asking: Hand axe making, will it always be 40 years away? There were no critics of the effort calling it a huge waste of national resources.So how should we be thinking about such projects? A little differently to be sure.
So what does the juxtaposition of the two very different demonstrations of technology tell us about disbelief?
To begin with, the ITER project and all hugely expensive big science efforts — think the International Space Station, think Large Hadron Collider, which recently has received a tonne of press — aren't like making hand axes. I looked at the man diligently chipping away and realized that the price of his failure wasn't very high. So what if it turned out the rock type you made axes from wasn't strong enough to chop wood? You simply went back and made axes from something else until you got an ax that worked.
And you, in this case, would simply be some intrepid carver and not some large part of the Paleolithic science world.
On the other hand, if ITER fails, it is massively unlikely there is going to be another effort to correct its errors. Research on its level is simply too big and expensive and time-consuming. But what if it succeeds — but only kinda? What if its results show that you can produce energy, but that it is 10 time times more expensive than energy from other sources? What if figuring out how to make that equation more favorable will require at least three iterations of ITER?
What you put in place with these vastly expensive research efforts is a "can't afford to fail" paradigm. Unlike trying to find the best plant material to weave into a mat, ITER, the Large Hadron Collider, etc., must succeed on first go-round. With ITER, there is no second kind of rock to be chipped away, no other plants to be woven, no different type of clay to be baked into a plate.So what should we be doing about fusion? Lots of small "understand the science" and "proof of concept" projects. Say 100 two million dollar efforts. About 10 twenty million dollar efforts based on the successes of the two million dollar jobs. And one or two two hundred million dollar efforts based on the promise of the $20 million efforts. Total cost of around a billion dollars a year when everything is fully ramped up. Nothing that is too big to fail and nothing where testable results are fifteen to thirty years off.
And that's what I so disbelieve about it. It's not really experimental science; it's risky, we-can't-fail, all-or-nothing science and I would respond to that paradigm with the wisdom of stone axe makers.
Sometimes your research should be based not on how glorious success might be, but on how little you will have lost if you screw up.
Of course I have my favorites. Here is one that I described in the Fusion Report of 29 August 2008.
Cross Posted at Classical Values
So who is to blame for the mess we are in? Victor Davis Hanson has some thoughts on the subject.
no one dares to ask what really drove the wheeler-dealer portfolio managers. Who re-elected these shady politicians of both parties? Who fostered the cash-in culture in which both Wall Street profit mongering and Washington lobbying are nourished and thrive? We citizens did — red-state conservatives and blue-state liberals, Republicans and Democrats, alike. We may be victims of Wall Street greed — but not quite innocent victims.I'm one of those 4 in 10. And you know what? I'm renting. I may have no assets but my liabilities are limited as well. Call it a form of reverse security. If my income goes down I can move to cheaper digs. What can a home owner do when the market tanks and his income goes down? Marx had a term for it: Stucco. That would be Groucho not Karl.
Let me explain. The profiteering was not just the result of a few thousand scoundrels on Wall Street or in Washington, as greedy and as bonus-hungry as many of them no doubt were. Look at the housing market as a sort of musical chairs in which everyone profited as long he grabbed a seat when the music stopped. Then those left standing — with high-priced loans and negative equity when the crash came — defaulted and stuck taxpayers with debt in the billions of dollars. But until then, most owners who had sold homes cashed out beyond their wildest dreams.
Thousands of dollars in past profits are still in sellers’ bank accounts or were spent on their own consumption. If the shaky buyer at the bottom of the pyramid should not have borrowed to buy an overpriced house, then the luckier seller higher up hardly worried that the cash-strapped fool was paying him way too much with unsecured borrowed money.
We created the cultural climate for this shared madness. Television shows advised how to “flip” a house after putting in cosmetic improvements. Real-estate seminars and popular videos convinced us that homes were not places to live in and raise a family but rather no different from piles of chips on a Vegas table.
We created the phony populist creed that everyone deserved to own a house. So lawmakers got the message to relax lending standards in service to “fairness.” But Americans forgot that historically nearly four in 10 of us aren’t ever ready, or able, to sacrifice for a down payment, monthly mortgage bills, home maintenance and yearly taxes — and so should stick to renting.
Cross Posted at Classical Values
It is unwise to attribute to malice alone that which can be attributed to malice and stupidity.
Monday, September 29, 2008
It looks like the community dis organizers need some help. From Mr. Obama.
WHAT exactly does a "community organizer" do? Barack Obama's rise has left many Americans asking themselves that question. Here's a big part of the answer: Community organizers intimidate banks into making high-risk loans to customers with poor credit.I have covered this at length but it you missed it try ACORN Is Not About Nuts and The Best Congress Fannie Could Buy and Barney Frank Frankly Not Frank.
In the name of fairness to minorities, community organizers occupy private offices, chant inside bank lobbies, and confront executives at their homes - and thereby force financial institutions to direct hundreds of millions of dollars in mortgages to low-credit customers.
In other words, community organizers help to undermine the US economy by pushing the banking system into a sinkhole of bad loans. And Obama has spent years training and funding the organizers who do it.
THE seeds of today's financial meltdown lie in the Commu nity Reinvestment Act - a law passed in 1977 and made riskier by unwise amendments and regulatory rulings in later decades.
CRA was meant to encourage banks to make loans to high-risk borrowers, often minorities living in unstable neighborhoods. That has provided an opening to radical groups like ACORN (the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now) to abuse the law by forcing banks to make hundreds of millions of dollars in "subprime" loans to often uncreditworthy poor and minority customers.
What is going on in my opinion is nothing short of a coup attempt. The American Thinker explains who planned it and how they plan to pull it off. Obviously these events are way beyond my control. The only chance we have is on November 4th. If Obama gets in with a Democrat Congress you can kiss the Republic goodbye.
Let me add that Eric has a very nice chart from the American Thinker article that gives the basics in a very quick look.
Cross Posted at Classical Values
Another Clinton backer endorses McCain.
As Barack Obama and John McCain battle for the Hispanic vote, a leading Latino backer of Hillary Clinton is crossing party lines to support the Republican presidential nominee.That may swing more than a few votes.
In an interview Thursday, Miguel D. Lausell, a Puerto Rican businessman and longtime Democratic activist and fund-raiser, came out for Sen. McCain. While he said he doesn't agree with all the policy positions of the Republican candidate and his running mate, Sarah Palin, Mr. Lausell added: "I find McCain to be a sound person and a man with a track record. I know where he is coming from." Mr. Lausell had been a major backer of Bill Clinton and served as a senior political adviser to Sen. Clinton's unsuccessful bid this year for the Democratic presidential nomination.
Mr. Lausell said he feels Sen. Obama "doesn't really regard the Hispanic community as important." Sen. Clinton won a large majority of the Hispanic vote in most primaries, and Latino voters are an important bloc in swing states such as Florida, Nevada and New Mexico. Most polls show Sen. Obama leads Sen. McCain among Latinos.
Let me add that there is a lot of bad blood between Latinos and blacks. The way the Latinos see it, fair or not, is this: Latinos mow lawns, blacks collect welfare. If the shift becomes major it could see a further cracking of the Democrat coalition.
Cross Posted at Classical Values
Brit conducts research among the aboriginals, tries to understand their strange ways. Open-minded UK Guardian sophisticate Linda Grant to gap-toothed Yank hillbilly Republicans: What makes you so small-minded, bigoted and stupid?Jules of course tells the Brits where to get off. And he has some pictures of some very nice full bodied American women in flag bikinis that might help them get off. Needless to say you should read the whole article. And look at the pictures. And don't forget the Sarah Palin Swimsuit Competition now with a link to the video.Small-town Americans have values and a lot of those values are good ones: neighbourliness, family life, a knowledge of the land and what grows in it. The other America they see on TV seems without ethics - crime, violence, drug addiction, pornography and prostitution - and they don’t want any part of it.
So clear is the divide between big-city and small-town America that one American friend said to me: “These whitebread Republicans are like children - someone has to tell them what to do and what to think, they’re incapable of independent ideas.”
The conviction by the left that the right is stupid is one of the defining and least attractive characteristics of contemporary politics. Assuming that anyone who disagrees with you is too dim to get your point is not itself a particularly brainy way to win others over to the essential correctness of your views.
The Boston Globe, normally a reliable liberal paper, says that Massachusetts Congressman Barney Frank (D - Corruption) has a lot to do with the mortgage crisis. It opens with a quote from Cong. Frank
'The private sector got us into this mess. The government has to get us out of it."I go into more detail on all the components of the problem at ACORN Is Not About Nuts and at The Best Congress Fannie Could Buy.
That's Barney Frank's story, and he's sticking to it. As the Massachusetts Democrat has explained it in recent days, the current financial crisis is the spawn of the free market run amok, with the political class guilty only of failing to rein the capitalists in. The Wall Street meltdown was caused by "bad decisions that were made by people in the private sector," Frank said; the country is in dire straits today "thanks to a conservative philosophy that says the market knows best." And that philosophy goes "back to Ronald Reagan, when at his inauguration he said, 'Government is not the answer to our problems; government is the problem.' "
In fact, that isn't what Reagan said. His actual words were: "In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem." Were he president today, he would be saying much the same thing.
Because while the mortgage crisis convulsing Wall Street has its share of private-sector culprits they weren't the ones who "got us into this mess." Barney Frank's talking points notwithstanding, mortgage lenders didn't wake up one fine day deciding to junk long-held standards of creditworthiness in order to make ill-advised loans to unqualified borrowers. It would be closer to the truth to say they woke up to find the government twisting their arms and demanding that they do so - or else.
The roots of this crisis go back to the Carter administration. That was when government officials, egged on by left-wing activists, began accusing mortgage lenders of racism and "redlining" because urban blacks were being denied mortgages at a higher rate than suburban whites.
The pressure to make more loans to minorities (read: to borrowers with weak credit histories) became relentless. Congress passed the Community Reinvestment Act, empowering regulators to punish banks that failed to "meet the credit needs" of "low-income, minority, and distressed neighborhoods." Lenders responded by loosening their underwriting standards and making increasingly shoddy loans. The two government-chartered mortgage finance firms, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, encouraged this "subprime" lending by authorizing ever more "flexible" criteria by which high-risk borrowers could be qualified for home loans, and then buying up the questionable mortgages that ensued.
However, I just came across an American Thinker article which asks the question: are the people behind this stupid? Or was it a plan?
Despite the mass media news blackout, a series of books, talk radio and the blogosphere have managed to expose Barack Obama's connections to his radical mentors -- Weather Underground bombers William Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn, Communist Party member Frank Marshall Davis and others. David Horowitz and his Discover the Networks.org have also contributed a wealth of information and have noted Obama's radical connections since the beginning.So this is a long time coming.
Yet, no one to my knowledge has yet connected all the dots between Barack Obama and the Radical Left. When seen together, the influences on Obama's life comprise a who's who of the radical leftist movement, and it becomes painfully apparent that not only is Obama a willing participant in that movement, he has spent most of his adult life deeply immersed in it.
But even this doesn't fully describe the extreme nature of this candidate. He can be tied directly to a malevolent overarching strategy that has motivated many, if not all, of the most destructive radical leftist organizations in the United States since the 1960s.
The American Thinker article points out that the strategy behind it has a name. The Cloward-Piven Strategy of Orchestrated Crisis. Lenin also had a name for it: Worse Is Better.
I think a deeper look into what the American thinker has to say is in order:
Before the 1994 Republican takeover, Democrats had sixty years of virtually unbroken power in Congress - with substantial majorities most of the time. Can a group of smart people, studying issue after issue for years on end, with virtually unlimited resources at their command, not come up with a single policy that works? Why are they chronically incapable?You know that sounds a lot like the Alinsky Method - Rules For Radicals. The American Thinker article goes much deeper into Cloward-Piven with lots of links and how the players are connected (see the connection chart - it is a beaut). May I suggest that a thorough reading is in order?
One of two things must be true. Either the Democrats are unfathomable idiots, who ignorantly pursue ever more destructive policies despite decades of contrary evidence, or they understand the consequences of their actions and relentlessly carry on anyway because they somehow benefit.
I submit to you they understand the consequences. For many it is simply a practical matter of eliciting votes from a targeted constituency at taxpayer expense; we lose a little, they gain a lot, and the politician keeps his job. But for others, the goal is more malevolent - the failure is deliberate. Don't laugh. This method not only has its proponents, it has a name: the Cloward-Piven Strategy. It describes their agenda, tactics, and long-term strategy.
The Strategy was first elucidated in the May 2, 1966 issue of The Nation magazine by a pair of radical socialist Columbia University professors, Richard Andrew Cloward and Frances Fox Piven. David Horowitz summarizes it as:The strategy of forcing political change through orchestrated crisis. The "Cloward-Piven Strategy" seeks to hasten the fall of capitalism by overloading the government bureaucracy with a flood of impossible demands, thus pushing society into crisis and economic collapse.
H/T commenter Dan at Classical Values for the Boston Globe bit.
Cross Posted at Classical Values
Cross Posted at Classical Values
Sunday, September 28, 2008
The Jawa Report is discussing the Obama Truth Squads in Missouri. In his report he says:
Did you know that Barack Obama once had a gay sex orgy with the entire offensive line of the 2003 Nebraska Cornhuskers? I'm willing to swear an affidavit to it and take a lie detector test.Now that is not the rumor I heard. I don't know where Rusty gets his misinformation but the way I heard the rumor was that B. Obama had a gay sex orgy with the starting line up of the Chicago White Sox and three players to be named later.
Gateway Pundit has the details.
This is MacRanger of Macsmind. As you know I was hacked by operatives of the Obama Campaign last month. Well, it happened again. Basically they flooded the site with “sql bombs” according to the host that caused the shared server to stop running. Subsequently be had to disable the site. This had to do with running the “Obama wants to Disarm America” post which more than 2 million people viewed on the site. Just like the goons in Missouri, the Obama truthers can’t let the truth be known. I’ve now moved the blog back to blogspot at macsmind.blogspot.com at least temporally. Because of the hacking job I had to move to another host but unfortunately they haven’t got the server up yet to redirect the traffic to blogspot. I would appreciate a mention to your readers. I’m getting a couple of hundred emails about “what happened”, but as you can imagine it hard to get the word out by reply.Macsmind can currently be reached at blogspot. Here is the video they didn't want you to see:
BTW you will note that this is the first video in a long time. I will be having them more frequently now that there are so few people still on dial up.
Cross Posted at Classical Values
ACORN is about vote fraud in Michigan.
Several municipal clerks across the state are reporting fraudulent and duplicate voter registration applications, most of them from a nationwide community activist group working to help low- and moderate-income families.Well. Two hundred thousand potentially fraudulent voter applications. I think it is a pretty good bet that those voters would be voting for Democrats since B. Obama has hired ACORN to do work for his campaign.
The majority of the problem applications are coming from the group ACORN, Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now, which has a large voter registration program among its many social service programs. ACORN's Michigan branch, based in Detroit, has enrolled 200,000 voters statewide in recent months, mostly with the use of paid, part-time employees.
"There appears to be a sizeable number of duplicate and fraudulent applications," said Kelly Chesney, spokeswoman for the Michigan Secretary of State's Office. "And it appears to be widespread."
Chesney said her office has had discussions with ACORN officials after local clerks reported the questionable applications to the state. Chesney said some of the applications are duplicates and some appear to be names that have been made up. The Secretary of State's Office has turned over several of the applications to the U.S. Attorney's Office.
I think it would be instructive to learn more about ACORN.
If you thought the New Left was dead in America, think again. Walk through just about any of the nation’s inner cities, and you’re likely to find an office of ACORN, bustling with young people working 12-hour days to “organize the poor” and bring about “social change.” The largest radical group in the country, ACORN has 120,000 dues-paying members, chapters in 700 poor neighborhoods in 50 cities, and 30 years’ experience. It boasts two radio stations, a housing corporation, a law office, and affiliate relationships with a host of trade-union locals. Not only big, it is effective, with some remarkable successes in getting municipalities and state legislatures to enact its radical policy goals into law.That is very interesting. It may explain why Bill Clinton was so interested in welfare reform and why he worked with Republicans to get the job done. It may also explain why a certain faction of the Democrat Party hates the Clintons so. He was ruining their game.
Community organizing among the urban poor has been an honorable American tradition since Jane Addams’s famous Hull House dramatically uplifted the late-nineteenth-century Chicago slums, but ACORN and Addams are on different planets philosophically. Hull House and its many successors emphasized self-empowerment: the poor, they thought, could take control of their lives and communities through education, hard work, and personal responsibility. Not ACORN. It promotes a 1960s-bred agenda of anti-capitalism, central planning, victimology, and government handouts to the poor. As a result, not only does it harm the poor it claims to serve; it is also a serious threat to the urban future.
It is no surprise that ACORN preaches a New Left–inspired gospel, since it grew out of one of the New Left’s silliest and most destructive groups, the National Welfare Rights Organization. In the mid-sixties, founder George Wiley forged an army of tens of thousands of single minority mothers, whom he sent out to disrupt welfare offices through sit-ins and demonstrations demanding an end to the “oppressive” eligibility restrictions that kept down the welfare rolls. His aim: to flood the welfare system with so many clients that it would burst, creating a crisis that, he believed, would force a radical restructuring of America’s unjust capitalist economy.
The flooding succeeded beyond Wiley’s wildest dreams. From 1965 to 1974, the number of single-parent households on welfare soared from 4.3 million to 10.8 million, despite mostly flush economic times. By the early 1970s, one person was on the welfare rolls in New York City for every two working in the city’s private economy.
What else has ACORN been involved in? Would you believe that part of their organizing has been an effort to get voters enrolled in states other than Michigan? And that in the original bail out plan ACORN was to get money from the plan?
Washington, Sep 27 - House Republicans have made clear that they will fight for an economic rescue package that protects the interests of families, seniors, small businesses, and all taxpayers. And as discussions continue in order to forge an agreement that reflects these principles, the American people are taking note of a left-wing giveaway Democrats are pushing to force taxpayers to bankroll a slush fund for a discredited ally of the Democratic Party. At issue is the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now – better known as ACORN – an organization fraught with controversy for, among other scandals, its fraudulent voter registration activities on behalf of Democratic candidates. Here are just some examples of ACORN’s most recent scandals and unlawful activities:Those ACORN folks are some busy beavers. They kind of give a new twist to the idea of a work party. I wonder if they get their training in Chicago? Well no. ACORN Headquarters is in New Orleans, Louisiana. That might explain the Hurricane Katrina debacle. Curiouser and curiouser.
- “ACORN is a long-time advocacy group with whom Obama was once associated. Recently, though, ACORN workers in two states have pleaded guilty to election fraud, an unlikely recipient of federal largess.” (Fox News Report, 9/26/08)
- “Seven ACORN workers were charged with ‘committing the biggest voter-registration fraud in [Washington] state history.’’ (The Seattle Times, 7/26/07)
- ACORN workers submitted “just over 1,800 new voter registration forms, but there was a problem. The names were made up – all but six of the 1,800 submissions were fakes… The ACORN workers told state investigators that they went to the Seattle public library, sat at a table and filled out the voter registration forms. They made up names, addresses, and Social Security numbers and in some cases plucked names from the phone book. One worker said it was a lot of hard work making up all those names and another said he would sit at home, smoke marijuana and fill out the forms.” (Fox News Channel, 5/02/08)
So who else was going to benefit from the mortgage bail out bill?
The housing package signed into law by President Bush extends an unlimited line of credit to troubled mortgage giants Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae and rescues homeowners near or in foreclosure. The measure also increases the federal debt limit by another $800 billion — and sends millions of dollars in aid to [the National Council of La Raza] and the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now, or ACORN.Did you know that La Raza means "The Race" in Spanish? Fortunately they are not racists. At this point funding for ACORN and La Raza has been stripped out of the funding bill for the stock market bail out. I think that funding for them is still included in the Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac bail outs unfortunately.
Representative Michele Bachmann (R-Minnesota), a member of the House Financial Services Committee, says she finds it “unconscionable” that the legislation included funding for the two groups, which serve as political action arms of the Democratic Party.
I wonder why ACORN has not been prosecuted under the RICO Statutes?
WASHINGTON, Sept 25, 2008 /PRNewswire-USNewswire via COMTEX/ -- James Terry, Chief Public Advocate for the Consumers Rights League, today testified at a joint House Administration and House Judiciary Committee oversight hearing on "Federal, State and Local Efforts to Prepare for the General 2008 Election," where he highlighted "corruption at every level of ACORN including embezzlement, cover-ups, misuse of taxpayer funds and voter fraud." An excerpt of his testimony follows:Pretty good question. Why isn't the government going after them? One thing is for sure, if B. Obama gets in nothing will be done about them.
James Terry, Chief Public Advocate, Consumers Rights League:
"ACORN routinely says it will clean up its act. Yet, given its decade-long history of voter fraud, embezzlement, and misuses of taxpayer funds, ACORN's pattern of fraud can no longer be dismissed as a series of 'unfortunate events.'
"The problem of voter registration fraud raises serious questions for this committee, and the Consumers Rights League appreciates that the right questions are being asked.
"Here are the most important questions right now: We know about the thousands of potentially fraudulent voter registration cards turned in by ACORN and caught by officials. But given the size of ACORN's efforts and the fact that the abuses appear to be systemic, we believe it is fair to question how many more fraudulent registrations have not been discovered, Furthermore, as this mega organization with a decades long history of violating the law is turned to get out the vote efforts, we believe it is fair to question how many fraudulent registrations may lead to fraudulent votes or what other activities they are willing to undertake to influence the election.
Oh yeah. If you want to learn more about how ACORN was also involved in mortgage fraud may I suggest reading: The Best Congress Fannie Could Buy.
Update: 29 Sept 008 0723z
Here is a present for ACORN that Chris Dodd and Barney Frank included in the mortgage bail out bill (Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac). A similar provision in the Wall Street bail out bill has been eliminated in the current version. So I'm told.
H/T commenter JBean at Just One Minute.
Update: 29 Sept 008 1129z
The American Thinker has an article that explains that the above documented methods of vote fraud are not an accident but part of a plan. Fraudulent names. The same name multiple times. Names out of the phone book etc.
Also this: Barney Frank Frankly Not Frank
Cross Posted at Classical Values
"If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude than the animating contest of freedom—go from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains sit lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen!" - Samuel Adams
Saturday, September 27, 2008
It seems that the Democrats who control the House of Representatives where spending bills originate are begging the Republicans to sign on to a deal to fix the mortgage mess they helped create. Hank Paulson, Secretary of the Treasury, went to a meeting of the Democrats to ask them to continue their efforts to make a deal.
It was then that Paulson gingerly walked in to beg, "Don't blow this up, please." The secretary feared that Democrats would throw their hands up and declare the deal dead.So let me get this straight. Democrats who control the House and have enough votes to pass the bill if they can get their party in line need the Republicans to pass the bill? Why? Because it is toxic with the voters in Democrat districts. I live in a Republican district, but let me tell you some of the toxic points for me. First money going to ACORN and La Raza (The Race - nice non-racist name there) and second restrictions on development of American oil resources. Third, nothing is included in the bill to reign in giving mortgages to people who can't afford them.
The crowd erupted in unison, all barking at Paulson that they were not the problem -- he needed to talk to his own party. Under the barrage, Paulson dropped to one knee, clasped his hands in front of his face as if he were praying and joked: "Please, please, don't blow this up. Give me some time."
Friday, September 26, 2008
Well yes he can come across that way. And don't forget "um, ah, um, um" and the ever popular "I have always said..."
For a man known as a powerful speaker, Obama has rarely wowed people in political debates. He can come across as lifeless, aloof and windy.He didn't do well at the Rick Warren forum. I suppose it was above his pay grade.
But Obama didn't make any serious mistakes in the many debates during the Democratic primary, or when he was running for the U.S. Senate in Illinois. He sometimes showed flashes of wit and charm. And, with a couple of exceptions, he got better with time.
"A year ago, he was not nearly as polished," said Timothy O'Donnell, a professor at the University of Mary Washington and chairman of the collegiate National Debate Tournament. "He equivocates less. He's quicker with examples."
O'Donnell says staying on offense will be key if Obama wants to shape the discussion and reach undecided voters.
The Illinois senator failed to do that in what is often mentioned as his worst performance in a major debate, an April 16 confrontation with Clinton in Philadelphia.
With Obama on the verge of wrapping up the nomination, the moderators focused on his potential weaknesses, asking questions about Obama's former minister, his policy on flag lapel pins and his comments about rural people clinging to guns and religion.
Obama seemed deflated by the questioning and failed to steer the debate toward his theme of change. His performance did little to reassure nervous supporters.
Eight million voters that is.
According to a new AP-Yahoo national poll, 42% of Hillary Clinton supporters don’t plan to vote Obama.I don't know how this squares with Obama's numbers in the polls. Well there is only one poll that counts and normally the other polls show the Democrat up until it comes time to vote.
That is nearly 8 million people! Eight million.An Associated Press-Yahoo! News poll shows that among adults who backed his rival during their bitter primary campaign, 58 percent now support Obama. That is the same percentage who said so in June, when Clinton ended her bid and urged her backers to line up behind the Democratic senator from Illinois.
The poll shows that while Obama has gained ground among Clinton’s supporters — 69 percent view him favorably now, up 9 percentage points from June — this has yet to translate into more of their support.
In part, this is because their positive views of Republican presidential nominee John McCain have also improved during this period. Those supporting McCain have also edged up from 21 percent to 28 percent, with the number of undecided staying constant, the survey showed.
Reader John Marcoux writes:The Democrat plan is larded up with pork for ACORN and similar frauds. The Democrats are also trying to use this bill to stop production of new oil resources. The Democrats have a majority in the House and there is no filibuster there. Let them pass it and reap the results. The Republicans need to stick to their guns. A clean bill or no bill.Congressman Paul Kanjorski (D-PA) was just on CNBC and said that his mail and calls on the bailout plan are running 50-50: 50% no and 50% hell no.This is what Barney Frank is up against. Even if the Democrats ram through the plan without Republicans signing on, they will be left holding the bag if the plan fails, as it very well could, and have to face the wrath of their constituents.
I have already instructed my representative. Instruct yours:
House of Representatives
Cross Posted at Classical Values
Read about it at Classical Values and see the NRA ad Obama is trying to silence.
Obama and the Democrats have declared war on America. Turn them all out.
Two public officials in Missouri are threatening to bring criminal charges against any one who speaks falsely against Obama. You know it should be illegal to blaspheme against The One. In a police state.
St. Louis City Circuit Attorney Jennifer Joyce and St. Louis County Circuit Attorney Bob McCulloch are threatening to bring libel charges against those who speak out falsely against Barack Obama.I have been saying for some time on various blog comments that a coup is under way. I'm going to say it out loud. If one Democrat is left in office after this election the American people will deserve what they get. The don't just need to be defeated. They need to be crushed.
KMOV aired a story last night, that stated that St. Louis County Circuit Attorney Bob McCulloch and St. Louis City Circuit Attorney Jennifer Joyce, both Obama supporters, are threatening to bring criminal libel charges against anyone who levels what turns out to be false criticisms of their chosen candidate for President.
St. Louis C of CC Blog has more on the Obama Truth Squads.
Cross Posted at Classical Values
Thursday, September 25, 2008
An interesting comment from No Quarter.
Comment by Judyfrom MO 2008-09-25 07:19:17I think Obama is in more trouble than the polls are letting on.
BHO better fear this: Our tiny 2300 town in MO which is probably 90% democrat has a Republican headquarters :) I have not seen ONE bho yard sigh. All McCain/Palin in this democratic town.
BTW the post itself is about Wisconsin being in play.
A senior guy in the Obama Campaign says Obama is going to show up at the debate Friday no matter what. John McCain says he will only show up if Congress does what it has to do to resolve the Mortgage Securities crisis. No doubt Obama needs the face time on TV to bolster his failing campaign, because if it wasn't failing he would have no need to show up.
Obama campaign senior strategist Robert Gibbs predicted this morning that John McCain will change his mind after all and show up tomorrow in Mississippi for the first scheduled presidential debate, rather than skip it to concentrate on the financial industry bailout. "I believe the debate's going to happen as scheduled," Gibbs told reporters at a breakfast meeting hosted by the Christian Science Monitor. "I actually think he's going to come to the debate," Gibbs said of McCain. "I think he will decide a president is capable of doing more than one thing at a time." In any event, Gibbs said, Barack Obama will be there.If Obama shows up he is going to look like a fool debating himself. McCain is off in Washington trying to fix the Mortgage mess and Obama is on TV debating himself. Obama will be looking very Presidential. Very Presidential indeed.
Lets see how that would work in practice. Obama on the right says I have always said... and when it comes time for the Obama on the left to respond it will be that is not the Obama I once knew. I sure hope the TV guys provide a laugh track.
Did I mention that McCain has Obama pwn3d?
H/T Just One Minute commenters.
Cross Posted at Classical Values
It appears that Bill Clinton has fired up the Democrat base. Not necessarily in a good way.
...the straw that really broke the leftwing camel's back was Clinton's statement today to Chris Cuomo on ABC's Good Morning America defending John McCain's request for a debate delay until after the financial bailout crises is resolved. Here are a couple of things that Bill Clinton said that drove the left absolutely bonkers:We know he didn't do it because he's afraid because Sen. McCain wanted more debates.This caused a firestorm of anger at both the Daily Kos and the Democratic Underground. So just how angry is the leftwing blogosphere with Bill Clinton? You can get an idea by reading this sampling of comments posted at the Democratic Underground:
...I presume he did that in good faith since I know he wanted -- I remember he asked for more debates to go all around the country and so I don't think we ought to overly parse that.SHUT THE HELL UP BILL!!! I can't stand his ass anymore.The Daily Kos is also quite angry with Bill Clinton as you can see:
the reality is that his presidency was All About Bill, he screwed interns and progressive values with equal abandon, and he ushered in Republican control of all three brances of the government.
What "Jewish Holidays" was he talking about on Larry King,He said he would campaign for Obama after. The Jewish Holidays, WTF message is he trying to send. This is a man that knows exactly what his words are and mean.
Bill Clinton is a black hole that runs on egotism. I am so sick of tired, old act. Don't go away mad, Bill. Just go away.he has now put his legacy and his wife's future on the line with his comments this week...people will look back and place a lot of blame on him...otherwise Obama wins and Clinton is sent into the dust bowl of history...
now Bill clinton is hiding behind his freindship with McCain as cover for not attacking him. Would he be so charitable if Hillary were the nominee? i think not. The sooner we get both Clintons off the national stage, the better off we all are. I for one intend to rally New Yorkers to defeat Hillary in the next Senate race. Hers ad Bills type have seen their best days, and we should put them out to pasture. We all saw the real side of Bill Clinton during the primaries. He is a two faced little coward who once did some good things for the country, but that was then. What exactly has he done for anyonre lately besides side with Hillary in dragging down the Democratic party? besides, if he is the great all-knowing and powerful campaign person, why didnt Hillary win? Give me a break!!!!
If you are looking for more entertainment of a similar sort you can visit Daily KOS and/or Democratic Underground. I think Bill is a PUMA. You know the Party Unity My Ass brigade.
I think Barry made a big mistake when he got Bill to promise to campaign for him. Heh. Well the long knives are out and it looks like Bill has the longest and sharpest one. What can Obama do? Well nothing. He needs those PUMA votes.
Cross Posted at Classical Values
Obama is going to have to raise a lot of money to maintain his required burn rate. His efforts should keep the television advertising business out of recession for a few more months.
Democrat Barack Obama’s campaign has budgeted $39 million to win Florida, and that’s just one of several “robust” set asides for swing states, campaign manager David Plouffe told supporters in a fundraising appeal this month.Yep. What if they don't? And it is not just a matter of outspending. He has to do it by a large margin, because as his primary race against Hillary proved, he had to spend a lot more dollars per vote than Hillary did.
That figure alone explains why Barack Obama decided to forgo taxpayer money for his general election campaign.
Simply put: His strategy for winning requires a bigger budget than public money would allow.
The Sunshine State strategic plan alone would have consumed nearly half of the $85 million allotted for the general election by the Federal Election Commission.
“This shows you the sheer magnitude of what we are trying to accomplish,” said Plouffe. “We are spending more money and more time on the grass roots than any presidential campaign in history.”
It’s a strategy, however, that has many other Democrats worrying.
"They’ve had an experience where every time they had a problem, people would donate money,” said one Democratic insider. Noting that some of Obama’s key primary victories came after he dramatically outspent former rival Hillary Rodham Clinton, the insider asked: “What if they don’t outspend John McCain in Ohio, Michigan and Virginia?
Lets look at some battle ground states and their electoral votes. And assume it will take money proportional to the electoral votes (very roughly) to win a state.
CO - 09 $13
OH - 20 $29
FL - 27 $39
PA - 21 $30
MI - 17 $24
VA - 13 $18
That is $150 million (roughly) to win those 6 states. That means he has to raise about $75 million a month just to win those states. If his calculations are correct. In August he only raised $66 million. Given other states he has to spend in and campaign expenses I'd say he has a problem. And that does not even count providing any money to down ticket races.
Look at it another way. He outspent Hillary by 3 to 1 or more in a number of states and still lost to her. No wonder why he has to rally by day and fund raise by night. If he maintains a pace like that he is going to be very tired by the last debate. And tired people make a lot of mistakes.
How is McCain dealing with the fundraising problem? He has decided to Leave The Money and Get The Votes. In other words he and Palin will be campaigning and doing very little fund raising. They will be rested and refreshed for the debates.
Cross Posted at Classical Values
Mr. Obama, who already has had a Johnson problem, is sticking his oar back in the same waters.
Former Fannie Mae chairman Jim Johnson was dumped from Obama's vice presidential search team, but he's still playing a behind-the-scenes role on the campaign.He must need those PUMA votes really bad to risk another attack ad from McCain tying Obama to one of the guys in charge of the Fannie Mae meltdown.
Former Senator Tom Daschle, a top Obama backer, emailed a select list this afternoon that he and Johnson would be leading a briefing intended largely for Clinton's campaign brain trust next month.
"Jim Johnson and I have scheduled another informal breakfast discussion and update on the campaign early next month," he wrote to a list including Senator John Kerry, James Carville, and Richard Holbrooke, as well as Clinton's former top campaign aides, including Howard Wolfson, Geoff Garin, and Harold Ickes.
Johnson's involvement comes at a moment when political association with the failed mortgage giants is particularly toxic. He was already the subject of a McCain ad attacking Obama.
Cross Posted at Classical Values
That Obama has all the best friends.
A founding member of the campaign of Democratic presidential nominee Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois met in New York City tonight with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.You know, if this gets out it is sure to give the Obama Campaign a big boost with the bitter clingers. So you know. Spread it to all your e-mail buddies and help it go viral. Obama needs all the help he can get. With so many out of work in America these days it is your duty to help him keep his job. As the Junior Senator from Illinois.
Jodie Evans, who co-hosted Obama's first major fundraiser in Hollywood in February 2007 just after Obama announced his candidacy and is a top fundraiser and donor to Obama's campaign, led a delegation of leftist anti-American groups that held a private meeting near the United Nations. The stated purpose of the meeting was to "serve as an opening for diplomatic resolution" to prevent war between Iran and the United States.
The government of Iran is listed as a state sponsor of terrorism by the State Department and is strongly believed to be developing nuclear weapons.
Obama has stated that he would be willing to meet with Ahmadinejad and other enemies of the United States without conditions. Evans met with Obama in Beverly Hills last week at an exclusive $28,500 per person fundraiser. As a bundler for Obama, Evans is granted regular briefings with top Obama staff members and meeting with Obama and his vice presidential nominee Sen. Joe Biden of Delaware.
Obama has come under heavy criticism from military families and troops support organizations over his alliance with Evans.
Evans is co-founder of the pro-terrorist group Code Pink and works with state sponsors of terrorism to undermine America in the war on terror. She also has publicly announced her support for the terrorists in Iraq, her sympathy for Osama bin Laden and her "love" of Hugo Chavez.
Cross Posted at Power and Control
It seems like Mr. Obama has heeded the call of President Bush.
WASHINGTON (AP) — With extraordinary stakes on the line, President Bush has invited both presidential candidates and the leaders of the House and Senate to the White House on Thursday in hopes of securing a bill to rescue the economy. Bush took the unusual step Wednesday night of calling Democratic Sen. Barack Obama directly to invite him to the meeting, White House press secretary Dana Perino said. An Obama spokesman said the senator would attend.Well. Isn't that lovely? Yes it is.
But what were Obama and his pals saying earlier? Obama had a few words on the subject.
But he disagreed with McCain's call for postponing Friday's first presidential debate in Oxford, Mississippi.Yep. Having the debates on time is so much more important than helping to negotiate one of the biggest spending bills Congress has ever authored.
"It's my belief that this is exactly the time when the American people need to hear from the person will be the next president," Obama said in Clearwater, Florida. "It is going to be part of the president's job to deal with more than one thing at once. It's more important than ever to present ourselves to the American people."
Good ole Harry Reid, the Senate Majority Leader, chimed in.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid issued a statement saying that the presidential debate should go on and that McCain's negotiations should not be a "photo op."This is the same guy who said a day earlier that McCain's presence was essential. Evidently once McCain decided to be there he was no longer needed.
Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-New York, said McCain's move was "just weird."Good old Chucky Schumer. So according to Reid, Johnny Mac was essential until he wasn't and then Chucky sees McCain's move as a grand stand play. Until of course he finds out Obama has changed his mind. Then it will be Obama's being Presidential. And that evil McCain playing politics. First.
"We haven't heard hide nor hair of Sen. McCain in these negotiations," said Schumer, chairman of the Senate Banking Committee. "He has not been involved except for an occasional, unhelpful statement, sort of thrown from far away, and the last thing we need in these delicate negotiations is an injection of presidential politics."
You know what is missing from the Democrat Machine is earpieces. So that when the message changes every one will be on the same page and speak with one voice. Axelrod needs to get right on it. Before his team looks even stupider. If that is possible. Given enough time I'm sure it is.
I forgot to add ∅ has been pwn3d.
And this little gem from Jim Ryan at Just One Minute.
By withdrawing into inaction, McCain leaves Obama with two intolerable options: follow McCain the leader or be left standing there with his dick in his hand.It's a Zen thing.
Cross Posted at Classical Values
So what is the cause of our current financial miseries?
How did America wind up in its worst financial crisis in decades? Sen. Barack Obama explained it this way last week: "When sub-prime-mortgage lending took a reckless and unsustainable turn, a patchwork of regulators systematically and deliberately eliminated the regulations protecting the American people."Hmmmmmm. 1993. Who was President then? That would have been W.J. Clinton. And the Majority party in the Congress? That would have been the Democrats.
That's exactly backward. Mortgage lending took that "reckless and unsustainable turn" because of regulation - regulation driven by liberals and progressives, not free-market "deregulators."
Pushed hard by politicians and community activists, the regulators systematically and deliberately altered financially sound lending practices.
The mortgage market was humming along just fine when, in the late 1980s, progressives decided that it needed to be "fixed." Their complaint: Some ethnic groups got approved for mortgages at lower rates than others.
In reality, mortgage lenders were simply being prudent - taking care to provide mortgages to those who could best afford to make the payments.
The shift began in 1989, when Congress amended the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act to force banks to collect racial data on mortgage applicants. By 1991, critics were using that data to paint lenders as racist by showing that minority applicants were approved at far lower rates. Banks were "Shamed By Publicity," as one 1993 New York Times headline put it.
In fact, they found a racial disparity only by ignoring relevant data on applicants' ability to make mortgage payments - such as their assets and credit history.
We now know why the Congressional Black Caucus was so strongly supportive of the shenanigans at Fannie and Freddie. You know, if this get out it could lead to an unwarranted rise in racism. Especially if Obama loses the election. People are in an ugly mood and looking for people to blame. Me? There were a whole lot of Democrats and not a few Republicans in on the swindle.
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
Harry Reid yesterday said McCain's help with the financial crisis was essential. According to a McCain adviser:
"Yesterday, Harry Reid said that consensus couldn't be achieved without John McCain's leadership. John stepped up and is providing that leadership.Today the Senator from Nevada changed his tune.
A Democrat tells ABC News that, in a phone call late this afternoon, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., told Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., that it would NOT be helpful for him to come back to Washington, D.C., to work on the Wall Street bailout bill.I suppose Obama will be voting absent when it comes to hammering out a deal. Evidently in the Senate he is NOT The One they have been waiting for.
McCain this afternoon suspended his campaign and said he would skip the first presidential debate in order to return to Capitol Hill to work on the log-jammed Bush administration legislation, which, as of Wednesday afternoon, was in peril.
McCain had phoned Reid to ask about the prospects of him, Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., and others to sit down and work together on hammering out a bipartisan proposal.
"Sorry," Reid said to him, a Democrat close to Reid says.
Cross Posted at Classical Values
U.S. Republican presidential candidate John McCain will suspended his campaign tomorrow to work on the U.S. economy.Obama said he is talking to Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi. He said if you need me call me. Evidently he doesn't think his presence will help. I'm inclined to agree.
He has also requested a postponement of this Friday's presidential debate.
In addition, McCain has asked Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama to join him in setting aside campaigning to focus on the financial crisis.
Cross Posted at Classical Values
The New York Times has the story.
WASHINGTON — The Federal Bureau of Investigation, under pressure to look at possible criminal activity in the financial markets, is expanding its corporate fraud inquiries in the wake of the tumult in the last 10 days, officials said Tuesday.Do you suppose some one has talked? I hope so.
The F.B.I. has now opened preliminary investigations into possible fraud involving the four giant corporations at the center of the recent turmoil — Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, Lehman Brothers and the American International Group, The Associated Press reported.
A government official, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the issue publicly, said it was “logical to assume” that those four companies would come under investigation because of the many questions surrounding their recent collapse.
FBI director Robert Mueller has a few words on the subject.
Mr. Mueller told members of the Senate Judiciary Committee that the major corporate investigations are aimed at companies that “may have engaged in misstatements in the course of what transpired during this financial crisis.”I wonder if they will reach as far up as members of Congress? What are the odds? Given that there has been no action in the case of William "Cold Cash" Jefferson so far I wouldn't bet on it.
He added that “the F.B.I. will pursue these cases as far up the corporate chain as is necessary to ensure that those responsible receive the justice they deserve.”
I assure you that Democrat assistance for the McCain/Palin team wasn't intentional.
NEW YORK (CBS) ― Politics and diplomacy were not a good mix at Monday's protest rally against Iran at the United Nations.Well it was more partisan in the aftermath than the Obama team hoped.
Hillary Clinton and Sarah Palin didn't participate in the "Stop Iran Now" rally and there were a lot of hard feelings about it.
It was a simple sign that read "We Want Sarah. Shame On The Rally Organizer."
Howard Webber from Brooklyn held it.
"As important an event as this is, you needed a unity of Democrats and Republicans to show Ahmadinejad that we're not going to accept a nuclear Iran."
Buddy Macy of Little Fells, N.J., felt much the same way.
"I'm so disappointed, upset," Macy said. "She would have brought 10,000-20,000 more supporters of Israel. People who were curious were stopped because of partisan action."
"Republicans benefitted more than the Democrats did," political consultant Hank Sheinkopf said. "Why? Sarah Palin wanted to be there, but it looks like she was purposely told not to and rejected. It gives her standing, particularly among those people who are thinking about voting Republican anyway."For Jews in New York to be even thinking about voting Republican is a serious reversal of fortune for the Obama team. I covered the New York situation a while back in Is NY In Play? And you know what? Maybe it is.
Cross Posted at Classical Values
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
Evidently, despite the poll numbers, the Obama Campaign is in melt down mode. The ever popular Jane Pauley, a former NBC regular, is not a big enough draw to get many Obama supporters to come have a look. Quoting from the Times of Northwest Indiana about a panel discussion on the economy:
PORTAGE Former television news anchor and Hoosier native Jane Pauley returned to her professional roots Monday during a local appearance on behalf of Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama.She doesn't know that real Americans play cowboys and Indians when they are kids? Or that Maverick was once a very popular TV show? Well it doesn't matter.
Pauley, who said she worked for the state Democratic Party before launching her successful news career, took part in a panel discussion aimed at touting the benefits of Obama's economic plans for Hoosiers over that of his Republican challenger John McCain.
While the subject matter was complex at times, Pauley occasionally took the opportunity to inject partisan humor into the discussion.
"Why would you want a maverick when you've had a cowboy in the White House for two terms already?" she asked, referring to McCain's description of himself.
Alas, Jane's witty comment didn't enjoy as much currency as it deserved. That's because only eight people showed up for the rally.According to carnival slang that would be a "blue one". In other words a low turn out appearance as opposed to a "red one" where the crowds are numerous. I think it has to to with Obama's numerous friends who "burned the lot".
Cross Posted at Classical Values
It seems like B. Obama is having some trouble in Wisconsin.
GREEN BAY, Wis. — Hoping to shore up support in his suddenly undependable backyard, Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama flew here Monday to talk about how he’d handle economic crises as president.Well Wisconsin and Minnesota are not his only trouble spots. He looks to be having trouble in Michigan [pdf] as well. And yet according to today's Real Clear Politics Obama is up 2.5% in the vote nationally and up 8 votes in the Electoral College.
Recent polls have shown that Wisconsin — once pretty solidly in Obama’s column — is now a statistical dead heat between Obama and Republican John McCain.
“You all know that you hold this election in your hands,” Sen. Russ Feingold, a Democrat who said he worked on ethics legislation with Obama, told a crowd of about 6,000 cheering Obama fans in the arena next to Lambeau Field. “We just barely won this state for Al Gore in 2000 and we just barely won this state for John Kerry in 2004.”
The numbers in Wisconsin and Minnesota are getting close enough that the Obama campaign closed its 11 campaign offices in North Dakota and moved the 50 staffers there to these two states.
Just a week ago, John McCain and his vice-presidential nominee Sarah Palin — who can bring out crowds the way Obama can — appeared in this same stadium, Resch Center, to a crowd of 10,000 fans. There were an uncharacteristic amount of empty orange seats for Obama’s rally.
What do I attribute the shift to? McCain ads tying Obama to Jim Johnson and a bunch of Unsavory Characters and The Crooks from Cook County (Chicago) and The Housing Problem and Higher Taxes and The Detroit Mayor and Franklin Raines are beginning to bite.
And Obama working on ethics legislation? I'd say ethics was the core of his problem.
Our financial troubles are caused by people treating the government as if it was their own piggy bank. And it is quite evident that our current troubles are a case of hogs gone wild.
In the past couple of weeks, as the financial crisis has intensified, a new talking point has emerged from the Democrats in Congress: This is all a "crisis of capitalism," in socialist financier George Soros' phrase, and a failure to regulate our markets sufficiently.So we know who the pigs are. And we know who was dishing out the slop (taxpayer dollars - your dollars). Sadly the pigs are going to require one more feeding before they get slaughtered and delivered to the market.
Well, those critics may be right — it is a crisis of capitalism. A crisis of politically driven crony capitalism, to be precise.
Indeed, Democrats have so effectively mastered crony capitalism as a governing strategy that they've convinced many in the media and the public that they had nothing whatsoever to do with our current financial woes.
Barack Obama has repeatedly blasted "Bush-McCain" economic policies as the cause, as if the two were joined at the hip.
Funny, because over the past 8 years, those who tried to fix Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac — the trigger for today's widespread global financial meltdown — were stymied repeatedly by congressional Democrats.
This wasn't an accident. Though some key Republicans deserve blame as well, it was a concerted Democratic effort that made reform of Fannie and Freddie impossible.
The reason for this is simple: Fannie and Freddie became massive providers both of reliable votes among grateful low-income homeowners, and of massive giving to the Democratic Party by grateful investment bankers, both at the two government-sponsored enterprises and on Wall Street.
Cross Posted at Classical Values
It looks like Sarah Palin has more value as a vote getter than as a fund raiser.
John McCain’s campaign is scrapping, rescheduling or offering surrogates for nearly every one of the fundraisers Sarah Palin was to hold this month, instead having her campaign jointly with McCain, prepare for her sole debate next month and get some foreign policy exposure.It seems like that is a very good idea. According to the polls at Real Clear Politics Obama has been gaining ground. And that does not even include ACORN vote fraud.
According to an internal fundraising calendar put together in late-August just before McCain’s vice presidential selection, Palin was to have headlined nine fundraisers across five states by now.
She’s attended just one to date.
And she’ll miss several more that had been in the works for this week, having reunited with McCain to stump in suburban Philadelphia Monday before heading to New York City for two days of meetings with foreign leaders in town for the United Nations General Assembly.
“It only makes sense that we would maximize her time and make sure the schedule lets her spend time meeting with voters, mobilizing volunteers and communicating her record,” said an aide to Palin, requesting anonymity to discuss strategic matters.
Cross Posted at Classical Values
Monday, September 22, 2008
That would be David Axelrod, Obama's Campaign Manager.
David Axelrod has long been known for his political magic. Through his AKP&D Message & Media consultancy, the campaign veteran has advised a succession of Democratic candidates since 1985, and he's now chief strategist for Senator Barack Obama's bid for President. But on the down low, Axelrod moonlights in the private sector.The article is kind of old (March of this year) so why did I bring it up? It might have something to do with a bit I posted earlier today: Is Team Obama Astroturfing? And for those of you not familiar with the term the wiki has an explanatory article Astroturfing. The short version: a well financed public relations campaign pretending to be a grassroots effort.
From the same River North address, Axelrod operates a second business, ASK Public Strategies, that discreetly plots strategy and advertising campaigns for corporate clients to tilt public opinion their way. He and his partners consider virtually everything about ASK to be top secret, from its client roster and revenue to even the number of its employees. But customers and public records confirm that it has quarterbacked campaigns for the Chicago Children's Museum, ComEd, Cablevision, and AT&T.
ASK's predilection for operating in the shadows shows up in its work.
It seems nothing about Obama is what it seems to be. Except for his Chicago/Crook County connections. Which are better left in the dark. For Obama. Obviously McCain has other ideas.
Cross Posted at Classical Values
At least not yet.
Here is where it started for me.
It looks like Joe Biden and B. Obama have some mutual acquaintances. Or at least mutual once removed.
DENVER -- No matter what help Barack Obama might get from Sen. Joseph Biden, his newly named vice presidential running mate won't give Obama much cover on the Tony Rezko front.So how did Biden approach Obama? My guess is that he said "A friend of a friend sent me."
Biden has described himself as a 30-year friend of a key figure in the Rezko trial who's pleaded guilty to a federal extortion charge in Chicago and is awaiting sentencing.
When the Delaware senator began contemplating his own 2008 presidential run, he initially was helped by Chicago lawyer Joseph Cari Jr., who also served as Biden's Midwest field director in his failed 1988 bid for president.
In 2005, Cari admitted to taking part in an $850,000 kickback scheme that prosecutors say was part of a larger political fund-raising operation for Gov. Blagojevich overseen by Rezko, who was convicted in June of wide-ranging corruption involving state deals.
On the day Cari's name first surfaced in the federal probe of the state Teachers Retirement System, the former finance chairman for the Democratic National Committee and for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee was to have hosted a Biden fund-raiser in Chicago. Cari was a no-show at that July 25, 2005, event.
Offering Cari a vote of confidence at the time, Biden said, "All I know is Joe Cari is a friend, and he's an honorable guy, but I don't know anything beyond that."
You can take the politician out of Chicago, but you can't take the Chicago out of the politician.
I'm looking forward to Obama's "I am not a crook" speech.
Cross Posted at Classical Values
My Pet Jawa thinks so.
It is also likely that the PR firm was paid by outside sources to run the smear campaign. While not conclusive, evidence suggests a link to the Barack Obama campaign. Namely:Go and read it all.* Evidence suggests that a YouTube video with false claims about Palin was uploaded and promoted by members of a professional PR firm.This suggests that false rumors and outright lies about Sarah Palin and John McCain being spread on the internet are being orchestrated by political partisans and are not an organic grassroots phenomenon led by the left wing fringe. Our findings follow.
* The family that runs the PR firm has extensive ties to the Democratic Party, the netroots, and are staunch Obama supporters.
* Evidence suggests that the firm engaged in a concerted effort to distribute the video in such a way that it would appear to have gone viral on its own. Yet this effort took place on company time.
* Evidence suggests that these distribution efforts included actions by at least one employee of the firm who is unconnected with the family running the company.
* The voice-over artist used in this supposedly amateur video is a professional.
* This same voice-over artist has worked extensively with David Axelrod's firm, which has a history of engaging in phony grassroots efforts, otherwise known as "astroturfing."
* David Axelrod is Barack Obama's chief media strategist.
* The same voice-over artist has worked directly for the Barack Obama campaign.
Cross Posted at Classical Values
Sunday, September 21, 2008
It is true. The latest Israeli crowd control weapon will force Palestinians to take a shower.
Israeli police say the new crowd-control method, which they call a "skunk bomb," was used for the first time Friday in the village of Naalin. Palestinians have been holding almost daily protests against a security barrier that Israel is building in the area.Clearly inhuman and a violation of all the Palestinians hold sacred.
Israeli police say a water-spraying device showered the liquid on the demonstrators, forcing most to rush off to change their clothes.
According to the Jerusalem Post, "some demonstrators described the smell as similar to that of sewage, adding that it was hard to get rid of, even after a shower."I predict this will reduce attendance at demonstrations. Death would be kinder and be more useful for propaganda purposes. After all, what reporter would want to interview a demonstrator smelling like a sewer?
It appears that one Democrat has family adding to the illegal immigration problem.
WASHINGTON — Florida Rep. Allen Boyd's son was arrested in Arizona Sunday and charged with human smuggling after K-9 dogs allegedly sniffed out individuals hiding in the bed of his truck.Whew. That is a relief. For a minute I thought he might have been one of those gun ban guys. And BTW some one needs to wise up the Democrats when it comes to crime. One at a time boys. One at a time.
John F. Boyd attempted to drive through a Border Patrol security check in Willcox, court documents revealed, according to KVOA-TV in Phoenix. Five illegal aliens, including a 6-year-old girl, were found in the truck.
The criminal complaint obtained by KVOA states, "At the primary inspection area, a Border Patrol K-9 alerted to the possible presence of illegal aliens in the bed of the truck. A primary inspection agent approached the truck and saw an individual hiding under a piece of plywood in the bed of the truck."
The documents also say the illegal immigrants planned to pay $3,000 each to Boyd to smuggle them into the final destination in the United States.
The vehicle contained "two plastic bags that contained several rocks of crystal methamphetamine, four unopened syringes, a spoon with white residue and burn marks on the bottom, and three knives. A further search of the vehicle revealed a Beretta 22LR pistol loaded with eight rounds of ammunition and a spare magazine loaded with eight rounds of ammunition in a suitcase in the bed of the truck," read documents cited by KVOA.
OK. There is another Democrat in Florida who seems to be having some social problems.
The discrepancies in where Mahoney claims his primary residence and the address listed on his voter I.D. card (a barn) are supposedly due to the fact that Mahoney and his wife no longer share the same address.Click on the link to get the full story on this and links to sources. Plus dirt on other Florida Cong. Critters.
Apparently, Tim Mahoney, through one of his consultants, has paid a former staffer, Trish Allen, $250,000 in hush money to keep a sexual harassment lawsuit brought by Mrs. Allen against Congressman Mahoney from the public view.
This is the reason for the conflicting addresses.
Mrs. Allen has already sat down with her family and explained to them that there was a good possibility that this may be made public and to be prepared.
A comment seen on the 'tubes:
"I want Obama to lose this election on so many levels, not the least of which is I want to see Keith Olbermann commit suicide on national TV"
Saturday, September 20, 2008
A reader sent me a link to this: Racial views steer some white Dems away from Obama. No wonder Obama is always complaining about racists. I'm a Republican and frankly I don't know any. So I kept wondering who the racists were that Obama keeps talking about. Well now I know.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Deep-seated racial misgivings could cost Barack Obama the White House if the election is close, according to an AP-Yahoo News poll that found one-third of white Democrats harbor negative views toward blacks — many calling them "lazy," "violent," responsible for their own troubles.Well that certainly is a problem. It is called the Bradley effect. Maybe it will now be called the Kilpatrick effect after the former Mayor of Detroit.
The poll, conducted with Stanford University, suggests that the percentage of voters who may turn away from Obama because of his race could easily be larger than the final difference between the candidates in 2004 — about two and one-half percentage points.
More than a third of all white Democrats and independents — voters Obama can't win the White House without — agreed with at least one negative adjective about blacks, according to the survey, and they are significantly less likely to vote for Obama than those who don't have such views.And a man who can't cure the racists in his own party is going to be the post racialist candidate how?
Such numbers are a harsh dose of reality in a campaign for the history books. Obama, the first black candidate with a serious shot at the presidency, accepted the Democratic nomination on the 45th anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.'s "I Have a Dream" speech, a seminal moment for a nation that enshrined slavery in its Constitution.
"There are a lot fewer bigots than there were 50 years ago, but that doesn't mean there's only a few bigots," said Stanford political scientist Paul Sniderman who helped analyze the exhaustive survey.
And telling his followers "I want you to talk to them whether they are independent or whether they are Republican. I want you to argue with them and get in their face." is going to help with that Kwame Kilpatrick image how?
You know I don't think he has thought this through. Maybe all that Harvard education is preventing him from thinking.
Long time commenter and e-mail friend linearthinker brought that word to my attention. He quotes this definition:
"...the statistical analysis of elections. Psephology uses compilations of precinct voting returns for elections going back some years, public opinion polls, campaign finance information and similar statistical data."And then he explains why it is important.
One quarter of all registered voters are Catholics and Biden is losing Obama their votes.And since he was so kind to include a link to an article on the subject I will too. The Elephant Bar quotes from The Telegraph UK.
Remember, you read it here first: on September 11 this blog reported a mounting backlash from Catholic bishops against Biden, Barack Obama's "Catholic" pro-abortion running mate. At that time I estimated eight bishops had come out to denounce Biden; the total is now 55. Beyond that, Biden is being trashed across every state of the Union by Catholic newspapers, TV and radio stations, and blogs. It is a tsunami of rejection.Uh. Oh. Joe is deep in it. Now here is the killer:
The story has now hit the secular media. Last Saturday Time magazine asked: "Does Biden Have a Catholic Problem?" By Wednesday the issue had moved onto the front page of the New York Times. Joe the Jinx has blown it, big time. Biden has only himself to blame: he started this war, with his notoriously undisciplined mouth. He knew the dangers. Last August, Archbishop Raymond Burke, former Archbishop of St Louis and now Prefect of the Apostolic Segnatura in Rome, said communion should be denied to pro-abortion politicians "until they have reformed their lives".
Archbishop Chaput of Denver had already announced Biden should not receive communion because of his pro-abortion views. Defiantly, Biden took communion in his home parish in Delaware in late August. On September 2 the Bishop of Scranton, Pennsylvania (a crucial swing state) banned him from communion in his diocese. That is effective excommunication.
There are 47 million Catholic voters in the United States. One quarter of all registered voters are Catholics. At every presidential election in the past 30 years the Catholic vote has gone to the winning candidate, except for Al Gore in 2000. This year 41 per cent of Catholics are independents - up from 30 per cent in 2004. Psephologists claim practising Catholics were the decisive factor in the crucial swing states in 2004: in Ohio 65 per cent of Catholics voted for Bush, in Florida 66 per cent. They were drifting away in disillusionment from the Republicans and split 50-50, until Joe Biden worked his magic. This is electoral suicide by the Democrats.Yep. And Jews are drifting away from the Democrats as well. In fact it looks like they are now being pushed. It all starts with an anti-Ahmadinejad rally. Hillary Clinton and Sarah Palin were both invited to the rally. When Hillary pulled out Democrats threatened to sic the IRS on the Jewish organizations if Palin showed up at the official event.
CBS2 has a Democratic politician on record with the story of why Sarah Palin's invitation was rescinded after Hillary Clinton pulled out of the event upon hearing that Palin was also invited and planned to attend the rally to protest Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad speaking at the UN, with one Democratic lawmaker calling it "McCarthyism."Jeeze Democrats. What a way to shore up support for a core constituency. First the Catholics. Now the Jews. You would almost think that this was an attempt to lose in a landslide. Here is another little bit on the subject from an article titled: Jews For John McCain Poll Shocker.
Once Clinton canceled and announced she would not attend, according to the report, the "axes were out for Palin" and the Jewish Groups which organized the event were told their tax exempt status would be jeopardized if Palin attended but Hillary Clinton or Democratic vice presidential candidate, Joe Biden did not.
CBS 2 spoke to Assemblyman Dov Hikind, Democrat from Brooklyn, who said, "This is insulting. This is embarrassing, especially to Gov. Palin, to me and I think it should be to every single New Yorker."
Hikind goes on to to declare, "It's an absolute shame that this has happened. To threaten organizations … to threaten the Conference of Presidents that if you don't withdraw the invitation to Gov. Palin we're going to look into your tax exempt status … that's McCarthyism."
The Siena Poll of New York likely voters is really going to upset the tummies of the Democrat Party, if they have any sense at all.It seems like the only identity politics the Obama team can play well is Black. That will guarantee him about 12% of the vote. Add in the Democrat "progressives" and it is still not enough to win an election.
New York Jews have not voted Republican en masse since Ronald Reagan and as of six months ago didn't appear to have changed.
The tide has seemingly turned though. In the Siena Poll (cross tabs) section is a demographic which should make Mr Obama start thinking about what to do with all of his spare time after next November.
The issue would be Sen. John McCain garnering 57% of the New York Jewish favorable view and Mr Obama getting a miserable 38% favorable rating.
That is not good news for the Obama/Biden camp, since the last time this happened Ronaldus Maximus Reagan won in such a landslide the world doesn't even remember who his opponent was. (actually the guy who ran against Reagan went on to get a job building houses for free and roaming the globe trash talking the United States and Israel)
You know this is pretty stupid for a Harvard educated guy who taught at the University of Chicago. Not to mention the fact that he has spent his adult life in Chicago identity politics. He should have spent more time in the ethnic wards on the North Side. They have Catholic areas up there. Jewish areas. And don't forget the hippie contingent. He might have learned a thing or two.
I think he is one of those kind of people who are over represented in academia. Too smart to learn anything new.
Cross Posted at Classical Values
This is a story from August 15th so it is a little old. However, it ties in with this story about the interrelations among climate change profiteer Al Gore, climatologist Jim Hansen, and the financial firm Lehman Brothers. So lets look at the connection between George Soros and the now bankrupt Lehman Brothers.
George Soros thinks the world may be in for a long recession and that housing prices will continue to fall more than most economists expect. He thinks a "superbubble" has been forming for 25 years—and it's currently collapsing.Lehman Brothers is trading today at about 21¢. Which is to say George has lost all his money. Unless he made money covering the positions of naked shorts. Which is way more complicated than I want to explain here. You will have to look it up.
But he thinks Lehman Brothers is going places.
The notable philanthropist, political activist, and hedge fund investor who made a killing on smart currency bets in the 1990s, disclosed in a filing yesterday that his fund raised its stake in the troubled investment bank from 10,000 shares to 9.5 million shares during the second quarter.
The stake, worth about $188 million, comes to 1.4 percent of Lehman's outstanding shares.
Let's hope he's in it for the long haul, because the trade doesn't seem to be paying off so far. Lehman shares started the second quarter in the mid-$40s, falling to $19.81 by June 30.
Cross Posted at Classical Values
Friday, September 19, 2008
The people of Michigan are mad as hell and don't know who to blame.
This state, which was living with economic catastrophe long before this week's Wall Street meltdown, could be to this election what Ohio was in 2004 and Florida was in 2000.Uh, Oh. Does this mean a bail out of GM and Ford? I hope not
And voters here are so angry -- about unemployment measured at 9 percent and some of the country's highest rates of foreclosures and outbound one-way U-Haul rentals -- that no one is certain where they will lash out.
"What's challenging about Michigan is that they've suffered this economy in its worst form," said Stan Greenberg, a Democratic pollster who has studied the state for years. "They blame the Democratic governor and the Democratic Party, and the Republican president and the Republican Party, and an elite they believe sold out their state."
It's no wonder, then, that John McCain and Sarah Palin held their first joint town hall meeting in this solidly Republican city on Wednesday, or that McCain played his newly discovered populist tune during a visit earlier in the day at a General Motors plant. "We are not going to leave the workers here in Michigan hung out to dry," McCain said, "while we give billions in taxpayer dollars to Wall Street."