30 September 2008

Which Election Was It?

Our nation was still in her infancy when this election took place, in which none of the candidates won an outright majority in the Electoral College. In such an instance the Constitution dictates that the House of Representatives choose the president, with each state delegation getting one vote and the winning candidate needing a majority of the states.

In this election each of the candidates were from the same party, and the Electoral College broke as follows:

Candidate #1 (blue): 99 electoral votes
Candidate #2 (orange): 84 electoral votes
Candidate #3 (green): 41 electoral votes
Candidate #4 (purple): 37 electoral votes
(131 needed to win)

At the time of the election eighteen states had moved to a popular vote system in choosing electors, while six were still chosen by their respective state legislatures.

The House of Representatives met the February following this contest (presidents were inaugurated on March 4 until 1937, when FDR became the first president to take office on January 20) and were able to come to a decision on the first ballot.

Which election was it?

"She always knows her place, she's got style, she's got grace..."

A couple of co-workers just returned from a two-and-a-half week trip to Australia. During their vacation they were kind enough to send some of us poor saps stuck here in the U.S. "PODs" (Pictures of the Day.)

They were all very lovely and pretty and such. But this is the one that put a lump in my throat; the one I will hold near and dear.

Always.

Cry Babies

The Wall Street Journal, on the joke that is the Republican Party in Congress:
Their immediate response was to say that many of their members turned against the bill at the last minute because Ms. Pelosi gave her nasty speech. So they are saying that Republicans chose to oppose something they think is in the national interest merely because of a partisan slight. Thank heaven these guys weren't at Valley Forge.
Steve Benen adds his two-cents:
To be sure, the House Republican leadership was in a bind yesterday -- they'd failed miserably, with the eyes of the world upon them, and accepting responsibility apparently wasn't an option. They needed to blame someone, and time was of the essence. "How do we blame Speaker Pelosi for Republicans rejecting a rescue plan?" a GOP member no doubt asked. "I know! We'll say her speech was mean and left us no choice!" another probably added. And that's exactly what they did. The top three leaders of the House Republican caucus -- all of whom supported the legislation -- held a press conference to say, earnestly and sincerely, that a "partisan" speech led at least a dozen House Republican lawmakers to vote against a package they would have otherwise supported. Seriously.
And finally, here is Rep. Barney Frank (Democrat-MA), Chairman of the House Banking Committee, mocking the cry-babies yesterday...

It Doesn't Have To Be That Way

This will scare the absolute shit out of you...

How Will It Play Out?

Ross Douthat looks into his crystal ball and predicts how the politics of the banking crisis will play out...
The most likely scenario, as of 3 PM this afternoon: The stock market continues to drop. Some version of the bailout passes in the next week. The American economy staggers into a recession, but passes through the storm without 1930s-style suffering; the Republican Party is not so fortunate. Even though most Americans claim to oppose the bailout [update: not anymore], the House GOP's obstructionism is widely viewed as having worsened the economic situation; the fact that these are contradictory positions does not faze an electorate that wraps all of the country's current troubles up, ties them with a bow, and lays them at the feet of the Bush-led GOP. John McCain loses by a landslide in November. The Democratic Party regains years or even decades worth of ground among the white working class, consolidates the Hispanic vote, and locks up a large chunk of highly-educated voters who might otherwise lean conservative. The much-discussed liberal realignment happens.
Such an outcome would be the Republicans getting what they deserve. Those of us on the opposite side of the political spectrum have argued forever and a day that the GOP are absolutely wrong on economic issues and we predicted their policies would deliver us to the abyss we now stare into.

But we need to remember that this is America, after all. All the warning signs were there four years ago however, rather than elect John Kerry, voters re-hired the current idiot for a second term - four more years in which he dug us deeper into what was, in 2004, an already deep hole.

The current financial meltdown better serve as a wake up call. If it doesn't, and American voters elect John McCain and his reckless brand of Republicanism to the White House, there will be no saving us. The situation is that dire.

"The one I can't deny..."

I wanted to embed the video to this song here, however all clips uploaded to YouTube deny bloggers the ability to embed. It seems a few of the bigger record companies request that the embed function be disabled. I don't understand that decision, quite frankly. Whether one watches the video on YouTube's site or on another site shouldn't matter one way or the other. No?

Ok...now that I've said my peace, here is an audio-only clip of Mat Kearney's latest single, "Undeniable"...



If you want to see the actual video for this track, click here.

John McCain Was Wrong

Jed Lewison over at the Huffington Post should edit this clip down to about one-minute and then see if any of the independent groups will buy TV time to air it. It's an absolutely devastating critique of John McCain...

Better Late Than Never

Via TPM:
Attorney General Michael Mukasey has appointed Nora Dannehy, a federal prosecutor from Connecticut, as prosecutor in the continued investigation of the removal of nine U.S. attorneys.
It's about damn time! This should have been done a long time ago.

Side note: If Barack Obama wins the election next month, the best way to move the Attorney General's office away from it's current partisan posture would be to appoint a responsible Republican to the post. (And if it's McCain, a responsible Democrat.)

Former U.S. Senator Warren Rudman of New Hampshire, perhaps? Or, as Chicago Sun-Times columnist Carol Marin suggested a couple of weeks ago, Valerie Plame special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald? Either one of those guys would return honor to a Justice Department that has been devastated by the Fascist Bush Republicans, while at the same time slapping down any over-reach that may happen by over-zealous Democrats.

Pathetic

She returns to take on Katie Couric...with her daddy. Watch this clip! Watch as she can't answer the fucking question Couric asks! And before letting her flail around further, Grandpa Simpson jumps in to save her sorry ass (and his answer isn't much better, but at least he came up with SOMETHING on the fly). The whole thing (the interview AND the McCain/Palin campaign) is one big train wreck.

Calm vs Panic

Barack Obama on yesterday's record 777-point drop of the Dow:
[It's important to] stay calm, because things are never smooth in Congress.

There are going to be some bumps and trials and tribulations and ups and downs before we get this rescue package done. I'm confident that we are going to get there, but it's going to be a little rocky.
John McCain's campaign on the same subject:
Barack Obama failed to lead, phoned it in, attacked John McCain and refused to even say if he supported the final bill.
Never mind the fact that McCain took credit for passage of the bailout bill before it...well...actually...before it didn't pass:
Shortly before the vote, McCain had bragged about his involvement and mocked Sen. Barack Obama for staying on the sidelines.

"I've never been afraid of stepping in to solve problems for the American people, and I'm not going to stop now."
Ok...now you tell me...

Who sounds more presidential?

And who sounds like an utter asshole?

29 September 2008

Polling, Post-Debate

Two tracking polls released yesterday include one full day of data post debate, and the news is quite good for Barack Obama:
*DailyKos/Research 2000:
Obama 51%
McCain 42%

Gallup:
Obama 50%
McCain 42%
*The DailyKos poll was done across three days, and the internals show the results from Sunday this way:
Obama 52%
McCain 41%
We'll see what the coming week brings, but an 11-point margin for Obama coming out of Friday's debate is very encouraging.

"Simply A Disaster"

You know it's bad when the writers at "Saturday Night Live" don't even have to write anything to parody Sarah Palin...

Eye Candy: The Folsom Street Fair Edition

WARNING: Not safe for work!
The sexy studs of Sunday's Folsom Street Fair...

Gil...



HumpySexy...



I think I need a beer...



Larry and Trevor...



Duane...



JC...

27 September 2008

Debate #1

Sorry I didn't post my thoughts on the debate earlier this morning. I needed some time to let it all sink in. As with most debates, I find my assessments in those hours afterward to be an incoherent mess. But now that I've had half the day to think it over, here you go...
There were no Reagan-esque "there you go again" moments, but last night's presidential debate was a clear and decisive win for the Democratic candidate, Barack Obama. Throughout the evening he showed a mastery of detail, a natural ability for leadership, a cool and collected demeanor, and, quite frankly, he looked more presidential than his Republican opponent. If undecided voters had any lingering questions about Obama's readiness to move into the White House, his performance last night should have convinced them that he is more than ready.

My only criticism of Obama would be at the end, when McCain tried to compare the Democrat to George W. Bush. That required a Reagan-esque slap down by Obama and he didn't do it. But with the Republican candidate playing the role of Bush's bitch over the last four years, I highly doubt Americans will take McCain's comment for anything more than desperation.

Meanwhile, John McCain's body language was angry, his attitude was clearly contemptuous, and he acted as if he was insulted that he even had to share the stage with his rival. The Republican never looked at Sen. Obama during the portions of the evening meant to be conversational; and, at the conclusion of the debate, couldn't even look Obama in the eye as he shook his hand (see the picture above).

Overnight polls confirm my thinking. More Americans say Obama was the winner last night.
CBS News:
Obama 39%
McCain 24%

CNN:
Obama 46%
McCain 43%

Democracy Corps:
Obama 38%
McCain 27%
In the CBS poll, a question was asked about how voters' opinions of the candidates changed following the debate. 21% of those polled said the debate gave them a worse opinion of McCain, where as only 8% said the same of Obama.

More reactions from around the blogosphere:
McCain came off, in my view, as a snide, bitter old man. His comments betrayed the sentiment of, “How dare you even think that you can compete with me.” This is what Clinton thought, and it destroyed her.
-Daniel Larison of The American Conservative.

All things considered, it’s about a draw. McCain got a couple of good punches in and so did Obama. Insofar as the idea is supposed to be that McCain has a domineering advantage on national security he certainly didn’t prove that point. And for the candidate who’s losing, a tie amounts to a loss. He needs to find opportunities to gain ground on Obama and he doesn’t seem to me to have gotten much done.
-Matt Yglesias of Think Progress.

[Foreign policy] was McCain's turf. He needed a solid victory, and he didn't get it. At best, it was a tie. And with the next debates focusing on economic issues, McCain will be in hostile territory.
-Markos Moulitsas of DailyKos.

Obama's emphasis on the broader global conflict and our broader responsibilities will reach more people. His vision seems broader, wiser, and more focused on ordinary people. A masterful performance tonight, I think. Obama's best ever debate performance.
-Andrew Sullivan of The Atlantic.

It's very hard for me to gauge this debate because to me John McCain is quite obviously a crazy, intemperate, nasty old bastard. He was sarcastic, contemptuous and patronizing. I really, really loathe him.
-Digby of Hullabaloo.

Can Sarah Come Out to Play?

Following last night's debate, Joe Biden, the Democratic vice-presidential nominee, was all over the television, doing a spectacular job of praising Barack Obama.

The Republican V.P. candidate? Sarah Palin was nowhere to be found. That's how embarrassed they've become with the pick.

Here is Biden with Keith Olbermann...



Here he is with Wolf Blitzer...



Here he is with Brian Williams...

Three New Polls and a Map

Note that these polls do not include samples from last night, so the numbers do not reflect any post-debate movement:
Rasmussen:
Obama 50%
McCain 44%

DailyKos/Research 2000:
Obama 49%
McCain 43%

Gallup:
Obama 49%
McCain 44%
And if last night's "insta-polls" are any indication, McCain's numbers aren't going to improve as we head into the weekend.

Meanwhile, state-by-state polling seemed to come in line with the national numbers. The current Electoral College map would look something like this if the election were held today:


Obama 307
McCain 231
(270 needed to win)

Obama got some really good numbers this week out of several polls in Virginia and North Carolina. He'll need to hold on to one of those states (preferably both) on Election Day if Ohio is to remain out of his grasp.

All in all, things look really good with a little more than a month to go.

Paul Newman, 1925 - 2008

The legendary actor Paul Newman has died following a battle with cancer. He was 83.

Newman starred in over 80 films and TV shows, and won an Academy Award for his role in 1985's "The Color of Money." He also won two honorary Oscars and nine additional nominations. Newman's mark on the film industry is indelible, starring in such classics as "Cat On A Hot Tin Roof," "The Hustler," "Cool Hand Luke," "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid," "The Sting," "The Towering Inferno," "Absence of Malice," "The Verdict," "Mr. and Mrs. Bridge," "Nobody's Fool," "Road to Perdition," "Cars," ... the list goes on and on.

26 September 2008

Thoughts on the Debate...

...in the morning.

The Name Change

Earlier this week I asked readers to give me their input regarding a name change for this li'l ol' blog. 433 of you emailed with your thoughts on the matter. (Hey, DailyKos I'm not!) Here are the results:
The United States of Wayne: 311
The Twelfth Floor: 96
Wayne, Oh!: 22
Wayne In the City: 4
Larry's suggestion was tempting...not! (He was joking by the way.)

And so, as of today the blog is officially known as "The United States of Wayne." It sounds funky, I like it, and with such a lopsided vote total, it seems the obvious choice.

The URL will remain the same through the weekend, but beginning Monday it too will change to reflect the name. Keep an eye out for a post on Sunday with the new info.

He'll Debate...

CNN reports John McCain will be at the debate tonight after all.

That's probably a good thing, seeing that his team accidentally leaked an ad claiming he won the debate that doesn't even start until 9pm ET. (I mean really...this guy's campaign is one huge mismanaged joke!)

Time Magazine reports the McCain campaign and his travel team are in complete and utter chaos this morning.

...and She Might Not

From Ed Schultz:
Capitol Hill sources are telling me that senior McCain people are more than concerned about Palin. The campaign has held a mock debate and a mock press conference; both are being described as "disastrous." One senior McCain aide was quoted as saying, "What are we going to do?" The McCain people want to move this debate to some later, undetermined date, possibly never. People on the inside are saying the Alaska Governor is "clueless."
The McCain campaign: "Titanic" meets "The Poseidon Adventure" meets Jon Arbuckle.

End-of-the-Week Levity

A big shout out to B-man for forwarding this clip...

Sarah Silverman talks to her grandparents about why they should support Barack Obama. HILARIOUS!

The Farce That Is John McCain

From the Daily Dish:
In rode the man on the white horse, whom no one really needed. And when he got there, he didn't resolve the impasse, and he didn't propose a plan. He just sat there, er, blinking. Now he's tied himself into the comic position that this deal isn't made by tonight, he won't show up at the debate, so there.

It's like a seventeen year old going to their room and slamming the door when he can't be the center of attention.

McCain/Palin: A World of Idiocracy

Kevin Drum, on the scary possibility of Sarah Palin as VP:
Look, this is just getting scary. I don't care how partisan you are, you can't watch this clip from Sarah Palin's interview with Katie Couric without wondering if she's completely cracked under the pressure of running for vice president. The question is a simple softball about the bailout — something she's had weeks to bone up on — but her answer is incoherent. Not just the usual platitudes politicians offer when they don't feel like answering a tough query, but completely incoherent. Hell, it's barely even in English.

I don't even feel right making snarky jokes about this stuff anymore. This campaign has gone seriously off the rails. I've never seen anything like it...
And this is the person McCain thinks is best to take over as president with a war in Iraq, a war in Afghanistan, military skirmishes in Pakistan, and a financial crisis that looks more and more like it could be another depression?

Say it with me: Barack Obama and Joe Biden. Now, more than ever.

Johnny McCain: Drama Queen

Joe Sudbay puts Johnny's "time out" into sharp perspective:
I think we've reached a point in this campaign where it is clear that McCain doesn't have a style of leadership or a management philosophy. It's all about the crisis. It's all about him. He's dangerous. Drama makes good t.v, but won't keep our nation safe and secure.

[Friday is] going to be a long day.
And probably one of the longest, painful weekends of the last 80 years.

For a complete summary of what went down yesterday, I highly suggest Andy Towle's run down of events.

Holy Shit, Dude

Update: Thanks to Beth, my unofficial editor, for catching a couple of typos. They are fixed!

From the New York Times:
Pakistani and American ground troops exchanged fire along the border with Afghanistan on Thursday after the Pakistanis shot at two American helicopters, ratcheting up tensions as the United States increases its attacks against Qaeda and Taliban militants sheltering in Pakistan’s restive tribal areas.
Between this and the financial meltdown, a little voice in the back my heads keeps suggesting that the Bush administration has come to the conclusion that Barack Obama is going to win the election in November and they plan (intentionally) to leave him one hell of a mess.

"No," you say?

This is George W. Bush we're talking about. He is the man who, in 2002, ran commercials against Max Cleland, the Democratic Senator from Georgia - a man who lost three limbs in Vietnam, that called Cleland a traitor and a supporter of Osama bin Laden.

One might think that Bush would intentionally leave this mess for John McCain as well . Their relationship has never been all that friendly. But after 8 years of incompetence and failure, the only hope Mr. Bush has of labeling his presidency any good is if the Republicans win a third White House term.

In the mean time, Mr. Bush is picking fights with a nuclear power.

McCain Still Weighing Debate Appearance

Update: Thanks to Beth, my unofficial editor, for catching a couple of typos. They've been corrected!

If John McCain doesn't show up at the debate in Oxford, Mississippi tonight, then my hunch is it will go down in history as the biggest and dumbest political blunder in presidential campaign history.

Imagine 40 million Americans tuning in to the debates to see what our future president has to say about the worst banking crisis since 1929 - as well as Iraq, Iran, Russia, North Korea, et.al. (as this evening's debate was originally to be about foreign policy) - and finding Barack Obama there, ready to go, and John McCain's podium...empty. It would be the death knell of his campaign.

All indications are that McCain's presence at the White House banking meeting yesterday is the sole reason for the bail out deal's collapse. Congress had come to an agreement earlier in the day and was ready to proceed until McCain showed up.

So, Johnny is in the way. He's told Americans the economy isn't his strong suit, so then why inject himself into something he doesn't know anything about. Better to leave the bail out to congressional leaders so he can participate in the debate with his Democratic rival.

America deserves no less.

WaMu: Biggest Bank Failure in History

In 2000 I predicted such things would happen if George W. Bush won the presidency. Eight years later, here we are.

We're in a world of hurt - and I'm talking something pretty damn close to the Great Depression here.

And if Americans elect John McCain president, if they choose incompetence over steady leadership, well...then...they deserve what's coming to them.

25 September 2008

Unfit For Office, Part 2

Are you fucking kidding me?!! Does any sane American truly believe that Sarah Palin is qualified to take over in the event that something happens to a "President McCain," a 72-year-old man with a history of cancer!?!!

Between her 3rd grade answer on Russia below, and this sorry analysis of the financial meltdown...I don't know...I'm speechless. How could John McCain possibly think Palin is the best person for the vice-presidency!?! This whole thing is a huge farce (who could have imagined we'd become a bigger laughing stock around the globe than we already were under Bush?), it's terribly frightening (tell me the words "President Sarah Palin" don't cause you to vomit instantly), and every American should reject the Republican ticket without question when they go to vote.


The Mysogynist Spic

Email from Larry:
I don't like any of your option names for your [blog]. Hmmm, how about "Misogynist Spic."
Don't tempt me.

"Summer is over and he's gone to seed"

Is it society's fault? (Oh, no!)...
Is it the President's fault? (Oh, no!)
Well, is it Johnny's fault? (Oooh, noo! )
This Don Henley track from 1981 has, for some reason, been on my brain all mornin'...

"Johnny Can't Read"



Ok, Johnny...nice political stunt...but back to the campaign trail. "Recess is over."

Johnny's Time Out, Part 3

In an interview with the NBC station in Cleveland, Ohio, John McCain assures voters that he's all over this bail out bill. Because, you know, he suspended his campaign to focus on the matter. Right?



So, he's called for a "time out" so that he can rush back to DC to help deal with the financial meltdown, yet he hasn't even read the bail out plan!?

Hey...Johnny...it's only THREE PAGES LONG! What the fuck are you waiting for?

Unfit For Office

Sarah Palin's interview with Katie Couric last night shows exactly why her nomination is a farce. The whole exchange is a case study in Palin's unreadiness for county dog catcher, let alone the vice-presidency. Pay special attention to Couric's question at 3:06 and Palin's bumbling answer.


Good GAWD, what a train wreck!

Make no mistake, my fellow Americans: she is unfit for the office to which she aspires, and the ticket she belongs to should be rejected in a big way on November 4.

The Daily Dish chimes in:
What must the rest of the world be thinking? America is in a profound crisis economically and in two grueling wars. And John McCain thinks that if anything were to happen to him, this person is qualified to run the world. One word: terrifying.
It hurts the brain to even contemplate.

UGH!

In the mean time, more from the Katie Couric interview below...



Update: Hilzoy on Couric's interview with the Moose-hunting MILF:
It would be nice if the running mate of one of the oldest candidates for president ever had some ideas about these issues. Since she's been prepping constantly, it's pretty alarming that she doesn't.

I served with quick studies. I knew quick studies. Quick studies were a friend of mine. Sarah Palin: you're no quick study.

"You Don't Quit"

Highlights from last night's "Late Show with David Letterman," in which Republican John "Time Out" McCain canceled a previously scheduled appearance because he "suspended his campaign."

Do yourself a favor and pay special attention from the 52 second mark forward...

Now They Don't Want Her to Debate

Keeping her from the press isn't good enough. Now these Republican clowns don't want Sarah Palin to debate:
McCain supporter Sen. Lindsey Graham tells CNN the McCain campaign is proposing to the Presidential Debate Commission and the Obama camp that if there's no bailout deal by Friday, the first presidential debate should take the place of the VP debate, currently scheduled for next Thursday, October 2 in St. Louis.

In this scenario, the vice presidential debate between Joe Biden and Sarah Palin would be rescheduled for a date yet to be determined,
"Like November 5th," Graham failed to add.

Give me a fucking break! These guys are chicken-shits, pure and simple.

Make no mistake: Barack Obama should show up in Oxford tomorrow night and Joe Biden should be on stage ready to go in St. Louis on October 2nd. If their Republican challengers show up, great...let the debates begin! If not, then the American people will know that the McCain/Palin motto of "Country First" isn't worth the posters they're printed on.

Johnny's Time Out, Part 2

Josh Marshall on John McCain's "time out"...
...if you were living in the real world, if you were some hotshot young executive at a Fortune 500 company trying to rise in the ranks, and you pulled some whacked crap like this, it would probably get you blackballed permanently. People would think you were either deeply unreliable or maybe just had a screw loose. And yet here he is - is he kidding? He can't debate Barack Obama because he's got to go to Washington and save the economy? It's like the biggest "dog ate my homework" in history.
Unless he's on the Senate committee that is responsible for the hearings on this bail out, then McCain should stay away from D.C. The last thing the congress needs right now is a flailing presidential candidate in the way for a photo op.

Johnny's Time Out

Matt Yglesias, on McCain's self-imposed "time out"...
...one wonders what it really means to suspend a campaign. Will McCain surrogates not be going on cable today? Are campaign offices around the country closed, with volunteers told “thanks, but no thanks?”

Most Americans Want the Debate

Within hours of John McCain announcing that he might want to postpone Friday night's debate, SurveyUSA did an instant push-poll and found that most Americans didn't like the idea...
50% Should held as scheduled
36% Held, but with focus on the economy instead of foreign affairs (as planned)
10% Postponed
4% Not Sure

24 September 2008

McCain's Campaign Is One Big Joke

The Republican's presidential campaign really can't get any more pathetic. Via Drudge:
David Letterman tells audience that McCain called him today to tell him he had [to cancel tonight's appearance on the show and] rush back to DC to deal with the economy.

Then in the middle of taping [tonight's show] Dave got word that McCain was, in fact just down the street being interviewed by Katie Couric. Dave even cut over to the live video of the interview, and said, "Hey Senator, can I give you a ride home?"

Earlier in the show, Dave kept saying, "You don't suspend your campaign. This doesn't smell right. This isn't the way a tested hero behaves." And he joked: "I think someone's putting something in his metamucil."

"He can't run the campaign because the economy is cratering? What are you going to do if you're elected and things get tough? Suspend being president? We've got a guy like that now!"

McCain Wants Debate Postponed

From MSNBC:
Republican John McCain says he's directing his staff to work with Barack Obama's campaign and the debate commission to delay Friday's debate because of the economic crisis.
Ummm...Obama's one and only answer should be... "no."

What the fuck!?!

Apparently he is suspending his campaign in order to return to Washington and help deal with the crisis.

A week after the crisis took hold, a week after Obama started sprinting ahead in the polls, a week after he tried to blame this on everyone but his own lobbyist, FannyMae campaign staff.

This move reeks to the heavens!

Update:
Steve Benen over at Washington Monthly puts this in perspective much better than I can:
...after whining incessantly for months about the need for one-on-one debates, McCain has decided, just 48 hours before the first official debate, that everything should be postponed. And Barack Obama should go along with all of this, because McCain says so.

I've never even heard of a presidential candidate acting in such a reckless, compulsive, and ultimately haphazard fashion. McCain just decided to "suspend" campaign activities? This rivals picking Sarah Palin for the ticket on the list of desperation moves.

McCain spoke at some length yesterday about the nature of the economic crisis, and what he'd like to see happen. But at the time, it apparently never occurred to him to get actually get involved in the process. That is, until today.

The Republican nomination has apparently gone to some kind of man-child who believes stunts and gimmicks are the way to the White House. It is nothing short of breathtaking to see someone so manifestly unserious seek the highest office in the land.

The moment the winds shifted and Obama had a growing lead in the polls, it's time to suspend the campaign. Good lord, McCain really does think voters are idiots.

Mid-Week Brain Break

Jay and Jay doing a superbly choreographed routine to Daft Punk's "Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger." (It doesn't hurt that these two are very easy on the eyes, YaKnowWhatImSayin'!?!)


(Thanks to Teddy for the YouTube link.)

WaPost/ABC News Poll: Obama Up By 10

I am not sure whether this is an outlier or whether the current financial meltdown has scared Americans into reality, but....

A new Washington Post/ABC News poll shows Barack Obama beating John McCain nationally by a solid ten-point margin among registered voters:
Obama 52%
McCain 42%
The sample size in this poll is relatively small and the polls we really need to watch are, of course, the state-by-state polls. But if other polls show similar leads for Obama later in the week, then we will probably see currently McCain-leaning close states like Ohio, Florida, and Nevada slide over to Obama's column, and the Obama-leaning close states like Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Virgnia become a more solid shade of blue.

BUT...we'll see. Let's watch the poll numbers from other organizations as the week progresses.

Holy Shit, Dude

pentecostal (pen'te·cos'tal), adj., Protestant religious movement that originated in the U.S. in the 19th century; a religious movement that seeks a postconversion religious experience evidenced by speaking in tongues, prophesying, and healing; pentecostalism emphasises biblical literalism.
Steve Clemons over at the Washington Note posts this screen shot of a YouTube clip in which Sarah Palin is being prayed over by Pentecostal preacher Thomas Muthee who, according to Clemons, claims that "he defeated a local witch [in Kenya], Mama Jane, in a great spiritual battle, thus liberating his town from sin and opening its people to the spirit of Jesus."

The video can be seen here, but be warned, it takes about seven-and-a-half minutes of gibberish before you get to the freaky Palin scene.

To add to this rather concerning clip is a little tidbit from Muthee's prayer for Palin. One more time, Steve Clemons:
I have to say I was pretty surprised when he was praying for her that Muthee said, "In the name of Jesus, in the name of Jesus, every form of witchcraft..."
What the FUCK was McCain thinking!!?! Uhhh...I'll take the Mormon over this shit for all the money in the bank, thank you very much!

"Free Sarah Palin"

CNN's Campbell Brown has had enough! (Thanks to Ben for the heads up.)

Even Alaskans Have Had Enough


(Poster via Shannyn Moore)

And we're still waiting on that first press conference, Sarah.

Meet the Thorons

Losing vs Winning

Quote of the Day:
...in terms of judgment, of selection of a running mate, of calm in crisis, of a smooth operation, it is McCain who is revealing his total inexperience and unreadiness for the job, not Obama. In fact, there is no comparison. One campaign is chaotic, secretive, impulsive, unpredictable and losing. The other is supremely well-run, as transparent as a campaign can be, unflappable, very predictable, and winning. I know which man I'd prefer to be runing the country in a crisis. Not hotheaded, mercurial, impulsive, gambling McCain.
-Andrew Sullivan, yesterday, responding to George Will's not-so-kind-to-McCain column in yesterday's Washington Post.

Andrew is also doing a superb job of covering a story that many in the mainstream media refuse to cover... keeping track of Sarah Palin's lies.

Bicyclists and Traffic Laws

No-brainer of the week: Bicyclists in San Francisco are notorious for blowing through stop signs & red lights and for turning in front of traffic without yielding. And then, when one of their own gets clipped, they get all up in everyone's grill.

Now before you all start hounding me, I am very much for auto drivers giving cyclists a little bit of leeway. They are, after all, doing their part to keep our planet green. If it were possible for me to ride my bike to work, I would do it. (That little puddle of water between here and Alameda sort of gets in the way.)

None the less, the installation this week of "special bicycle traffic signals" at the corner of Fell and Masonic begs the rather obvious question...

Why can't the cyclists just fuckin' follow the same traffic signals, signs, and laws that we car drivers follow?

Sarah and Mahmoud

Headline from CNN.com, yesterday...


Well, that's a hell of a lot more than Sarah Palin, the Republican vice-presidential candidate, did during her visit to the U.N. yesterday, where, when she met with the leader of Iraq, they spoke of their kids. Not the war, not the country's failure to take on security for themselves...their kids.

Gayken

Ssshhh...listen. That sound you hear? It is the entire population of America doing one big collective "DUUHHH!!!"

23 September 2008

A Request For Advice From My Readers

Hello all. I would like a little advice from you if you don't mind. I intend to the change the name of the blog within the next week or two and I would like your input. I'm playing around with four ideas and would like your thoughts...

The United States of Wayne (Because it sounds sort of funky...and...well, let's face facts, shall we? Don't we ALL think we could run this country a bit better than the goon currently manning the helm?)

The Twelfth Floor (After the infamous dance club in Andrew Holleran's classic novel "Dancer From the Dance.")

Wayne In the City (City boy that I am...)

Wayne, Oh! (Friends called me "Wayne-o" in high school, and my little sister still does.)

Shoot me an email with your thoughts on the matter - or with other ideas. Simply click the "email me" link to the right under "correspondence." I may post a few more ideas later in the week.
Thanks everyone!

Three New Polls and a Map

Two new national polls and a poll in Virginia show Barack Obama with comfortable leads, outside the margins of error.

CNN/Opinion Research:
Obama 51%
McCain 46%
DailyKos/Research 2000:
Obama 49%
McCain 43%
In Virginia, a Washington Post/ABC News poll shows Sen. Obama moving into a sold lead over John McCain, with most of the movement in the Democrat's direction coming in the last few days:
Obama 51%
McCain 43%
I'd normally call the Virginia poll an outlier, but SurveyUSA, whose polling was absolutely stellar during the primary season, had a very similar result yesterday:
Obama 51%
McCain 45%
These two polls by no means indicate that Virginia is safe for Obama. It is, after all, a state that hasn't gone Democratic in a presidential election since 1964. But, add those two leads to that the fact that North Carolina (last Democratic in 1976) is tied, and one has to at least wonder how stupendous it would be if, on Election Night, two states of the old confederacy vote for the first African-American president.

I'm not holding my breath, and I'll pay closer attention to the polls the last week before the election, but right now it looks promising.

And so here is the updated map, as I see it, based on the current polling:


Obama 286
McCain 237
Tied 15

2 in 1: Eye Candy and Song of the Day

This morning your Song of the Day is by one mighty nice piece of eye candy. From his 2002 album "Daylight," here is a little known yet superb piece of pop-rock...

"On A High" by the devastatingly handsome Duncan Sheik

George Will: McCain Unpresidential

George Will, the true red-blooded American conservative - and the rest of the ABC This Week Roundtable - rake McCain over the coals:

It Was 1932

The map in yesterday's "Which Election Was It?" post is from 1932. The United States was bogged down in the Great Depression, with Republican President Herbert Hoover standing by his conservative principles (ie: let it work itself out) while banks closed and Americans went hungry and homeless. One-term Democratic Governor Franklin Delano Roosevelt of New York (former Secretary of the Navy under President Wilson, and the 1920 candidate for vice-president on the losing Democratic ticket) won a landslide victory on his platform to bring America a "new deal."

22 September 2008

Emmy Award Winner Sarah Silverman

Ladies and gentlemen, the Emmy Award for Original Music and Lyrics goes to...Sarah Silverman!

(I shit you not!)

The Farce

Bill Maher, Andrew Sullivan, Naomi Klein, and Will.I.Am. in a brutally honest exchange on the farce that is the vice-presidential nomination of Sarah Palin...

Changed Thinking

Quote of the Day:
As gay couples have gone to the courthouse and entered into matrimony, usually surrounded by champagne, family and friends, the worst fears of gay marriage opponents suddenly seem greatly inflated...

The long-standing institution of marriage is not in crisis. Californians have taken this change in stride.
The editorial page of the San Diego Union Tribune, who have until recently urged civil unions over marriage for gay and lesbian couples, in an essay last week urging readers to reject Proposition 8 here in California.

The proposed amendment to the state Constitution is currently failing, with 55% of state voters against it and only 38% for it, according to a new Field Poll. The key now is to make sure we keep the margin that big between now and Election Day, just in case these samples contain votes who are telling the pollsters one thing only to turn out on November 4th and do something else.

If you have a few bucks to spare, please donate against the fascist cause here.

Little Miss Chloe

Bringing me her new tug-of-war toy...

A Risk We Can't Afford

Obama hits McCain hard with this new ad...

Old Boys Network

More superb analysis from TPM's Josh Marshall:
The New York Times reports this evening that "foreign banks, which were initially excluded from the [Wall Street bailout] plan, lobbied successfully over the weekend to be able to sell the toxic American mortgage debt owned by their American units to the Treasury, getting the same treatment as United States banks.

The Times further reports that two of the biggest foreign banks in need of such relief are Barclays and UBS. In fact, my understanding is that UBS is more on the line here than any other foreign bank.

Let's add this up.

John McCain's top economics advisor, who is widely believed to be his choice for Treasury Secretary, should he win in November, is former Sen. Phil Gramm. (Indeed, just last night his spokesman refused to say Gramm wouldn't be McCain's choice for Treasury Secretary.)

Gramm is both vice chairman of UBS's US division and a lobbyist for UBS.

If UBS successfully lobbied over the weekend to get in on the bailout, what was Gramm's role in the lobbying?
Between the pick of Palin as V.P. and the potential pick of Gramm as Treasury Secretary, it is more than obvious that John McCain doesn't have the judgment to be president. Americans should reject him without question on Election Day.

Putting Out Fire With Gasoline

As I learn more and more about the government's banking bailout plan, I keep thinking to myself that this is the Bush administration (for crying out loud!), and that we should not be trusting them to handle a crisis of this magnitude. These are, after all, the guys that see a fire and try to put it out with gasoline (Iraq) or simply freeze and don't do anything (Katrina). Don't you think?

But...totally unrelated...that thought put this classic David Bowie rocker in my head. From 1983's "Let's Dance" album, the track was produced by the legendary Nile Rodgers and features Rodgers and the late Stevie Ray Vaughn doing some superb guitar work. Your Song of the Day is...

"Cat People (Putting Out Fire)"

Telling Us What We Don't Want to Hear

As always, Thomas Friedman hits the nail on the head. This time regarding last week's financial meltdown. Some key parts of yesterday's column follow:
...In this age of globalization, government matters more than ever. Smart, fiscally strong governments are the ones best able to empower their people to compete and win...

In many ways, this election is about how we get our groove back as a country. We have been living on borrowed time and borrowed dimes. President Bush has nothing to offer anymore. So that leaves us with Barack Obama and John McCain. Neither has wowed me with his reaction to the market turmoil. In fairness, though, neither man has any levers of power to pull. But what could they say that would give you confidence that they could lead us out of this rut? My test is simple: Which guy can tell people what they don’t want to hear — especially his own base.

So what would get my attention from McCain? If he said the following: “My fellow Americans, I’ve decided for now not to continue the Bush tax cuts, because the most important thing for our country today is to get the government’s balance sheet in order. We can’t go on cutting taxes and not cutting spending. For too long my party has indulged that nonsense. Second, I intend to have most U.S. troops out of Iraq in 24 months. We have done all we can to midwife democracy there. Iraqis need to take it from here. We need every dollar now for nation-building in America. We will do everything we can to wind down our presence and facilitate the Iraqi elections, but we’re not going to baby-sit Iraqi politicians who don’t have the will or the courage to reconcile their differences — unless they want to pay us for that. In America, baby sitters get paid.”

What would impress me from Obama? How about this: “The Big Three automakers and the United Auto Workers union want a Washington bailout. The only way they will get a dime out of my administration is if the automakers and unions come up with a joint plan to retool their fleets to get an average of 40 miles per gallon by 2015 — instead of the 35 m.p.g. by 2020 that they’ve reluctantly accepted. I am not going to bail out Detroit with taxpayer money, but I will invest in Detroit’s transformation with taxpayer money, provided the management and unions agree to radical change. At the same time, while I will go along with the bailout of the banking system, it will only be on the condition that the institutions that got us into this mess accept sweeping reforms — in terms of transparency and limits on the leverage they can amass — so we don’t go through something like this again. To help me figure this out, I’m going to keep Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson on the job for a while. I am impressed with his handling of this crisis.”

Those are the kind of words that would get my attention. The last president who challenged his base was Bill Clinton, when he reformed welfare and created a budget surplus with a fair and equitable tax program. George W. Bush never once — not one time — challenged Americans to do anything hard, let alone great. The next president is not going to have that luxury. He will have to ask everyone to do something hard — and I want to know now who is up to that task.

The Trouble With Henry, Part 2

Josh Marshall can't seem to find an economist who is on board with the Bush administration's financial bailout plan:
I'm having a hard time finding economists or others with related expertise -- either on the right or left -- who don't believe two things: a) that this plan gives way, way too much discretionary power to the Treasury Department with little requirement even to make reports to Congres and b) as Paul Krugman puts it, "there's no quid pro quo here -- nothing that gives taxpayers a stake in the upside, nothing that ensures that the money is used to stabilize the system rather than reward the undeserving." Whether that means equity stakes for taxpayers or simply some assurance that the USG won't be paying premium prices for worthless crap, that key component just doesn't seem to be anywhere in the proposal.

And unless I'm not being clear, this request isn't simply for effect. This is not a rhetorical question. I'm really looking for examples. I can see lots of politicians saying we need to do something now or we'll all die and lining up to vote for whatever Paulson says. But I'm curious how many economists there are (or people with relevant professional expertise) who don't agree that these two shortcomings must be rectified.
As I said below, congress needs to be very careful. They need to take the time to actually comb through the proposal before voting on it. If there is any clue whatsoever that the plan may place America's financial house in increased jeopardy, it should be rejected outright.

The Trouble With Henry

Economic professor and NY Times columnist Paul Krugman doesn't think this federal bail out is such a great idea:
I hate to say this, but looking at the plan as leaked, I have to say no deal. Not unless Treasury [Secretary Henry Paulson] explains, very clearly, why this is supposed to work, other than through having taxpayers pay premium prices for lousy assets.

As I posted earlier today, it seems all too likely that a “fair price” for mortgage-related assets will still leave much of the financial sector in trouble. And there’s nothing at all in the draft that says what happens next; although I do notice that there’s nothing in the plan requiring Treasury to pay a fair market price. So is the plan to pay premium prices to the most troubled institutions? Or is the hope that restoring liquidity will magically make the problem go away?

...And there’s no quid pro quo here — nothing that gives taxpayers a stake in the upside, nothing that ensures that the money is used to stabilize the system rather than reward the undeserving.

I hope I’m wrong about this. But let me say it again: Treasury needs to explain why this is supposed to work — not try to panic Congress into giving it a blank check. Otherwise, no deal.
As much as I think some sort of government intervention was needed, the scope of the administration's proposed plan does pose some very, very important questions. And the congress should make sure those questions are answered, and that the American people aren't being taken for a ride, before they pass the proposed bailout package.

This is, after all, the administration of George W. Bush. When it comes to handling crises, America and the rest of the globe don't trust the man one bit. He's a proven failure and, as such, the congressional leadership need to bend over backwards to make sure this proposal is solid and and that it isn't going to bury an already crumbling economy deeper into a hole.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (my congresswoman here in San Francisco) is already on my shit-list for not putting impeachment on the table and, most recently, for caving on the off-shore drilling issue. In fact, she will not receive my vote on November 4th for those two reasons. It'll be a protest vote, as she is sure to retain her seat by a wide margin, BUT...if she rolls over for a banking bill that will turn the economy on its ass, she'll need to pray to high heaven that she doesn't get a primary challenge the next time she stands for re-election.

Which Election Was It?

Following 12 years of Republican rule, the nation was reeling from a banking and economic crisis. The Democratic candidate won a landslide victory with 57.4% of the popular vote and 472 electoral votes. The Republican incumbent won just 39.6% of the national vote and 59 electoral votes.

Which election was it?

And Who's the Elitist?

From Newsweek:
After the fuss over the number of residences owned by the two presidential nominees, NEWSWEEK looked into the candidates' cars. And based on public vehicle-registration records, here's the score. John McCain: 13. Barack Obama: one.

19 September 2008

New Poll: Obama Up By 7

This morning's DailyKos/Research 2000 poll has Barack Obama leading John McCain by seven percentage points:
Obama 49%
McCain 42%
It seems the financial meltdown of the past week has the chickens coming home to roost for the Republican-led government.

GOP Senator: Palin Pick 'Insulting'

Quote of the Day 2:
She doesn’t have any foreign policy credentials. You get a passport for the first time in your life last year? I mean, I don’t know what you can say. You can’t say anything.

I think they ought to be just honest about it and stop the nonsense about, ‘I look out my window and I see Russia and so therefore I know something about Russia. That kind of thing is insulting to the American people.
-United States Senator Chuck Hagel (Republican-Nebraska), yesterday, to the Omaha World-Herald.

I have a very strong hunch that Hagel will be part of a bipartisan Obama cabinet, more than likely as Secretary of Defense. It has become plainly obvious during the course of the campaign that Hagel backs Obama's candidacy over McCain's.

And with Colin Powell admiring Obama from afar, I think it would be a tremendous boost to the Democratic ticket if both Hagel and Powell held a joint news conference announcing their endorsement of Barack Obama for president.

Perhaps around the time of the debate that is to be dedicated to foreign policy?

Just thinking out loud.

Ouch!

Via CNN:
Sarah Palin likes to tell voters around the country about how she "put the government checkbook online" in Alaska. On Thursday, Palin suggested she would take that same proposal to Washington.
"We're going to do a few new things also," she said at a rally in Cedar Rapids. "For instance, as Alaska's governor, I put the government's checkbook online so that people can see where their money's going. We'll bring that kind of transparency, that responsibility, and accountability back. We're going to bring that back to D.C."

There's just one problem with proposing to put the federal checkbook online - somebody's already done it.

His name is Barack Obama.

Republicans and the Rule of Law

Quote of the Day:
It would be to appease the McCain camp. They're doing everything they can to delay.
-Alaska State Sen. Bill Wielechowski, on Todd Palin's refusal to testify before the state legislature regarding the "trooper-gate" abuse of power case against his wife Sarah, the Republican vice-presidential candidate.

Complete and utter disregard for the law? Essentially arguing that they are above the law? Can America really afford four more years of such blatant disregard of justice?

18 September 2008

Peter Fitzgerald For Attorney General?

Carol Marin, columnist at the Chicago Sun-Times, argues that Barack Obama should start naming his potential cabinet now, as part of the presidential campaign, rather than waiting until after the election, as has long been the custom.

And with John Edwards now out of the running for Attorney General, Marin suggests a superb choice for the post: Patrick Fitzgerald, the U.S. Attorney in charge of the Valerie Plame investigation AND the Tony Rezko trial.

Talk about punching a hole in the Republicans balloon!

Needless to say...I love both ideas.

Just Pray Away the Gay

A video love-letter to Sarah Palin, from filmmaker Sandi Bachom...

elitist [eɪˈliːtɪst]

elitist (adjective): perceived superiority, as in intellect, social status, or financial resources;
See "de Rothschild"


Quote of the Day:
This is a hard decision for me personally because frankly I don’t like [Obama]. I feel like he is an elitist. I feel like he has not given me reason to trust him.
-Lynn Forrester de Rothschild, a member of the Democratic National Committee who supported Hillary Clinton in the presidential primaries, announcing yesterday that she will vote for John McCain in November.

So, let me see if I have this straight: A woman by the name of Forrester de Rothschild, a multi-millionaire in her own right, who is married to Sir Evelyn de Rothschild, an English Lord and the billionaire descendant of the infamous Rothschild banking family of Great Britain, and who splits her time between homes in New York and London...

...is calling Barack Obama, son of a single mother who supported her family on food stamps for a short period of time, an elitist ?!!

Hey Lynn!

Your husband's name is SIR EVELYN !!

Do us all a favor...and just shut the fuck up!

Republican Fiscal Policy

Quote of the Day #2:
Sarah Palin saw the Lehman Brothers offices from the top of a double-decker tour bus in New York.

She knows finance.
-The absolutely adorable ThisBoyElroy, taking a Tina Fey-style jab at the GOP V.P. nominee.

"Teenage hopes alive at your door...

...left you with nothing, but they want some more."

Your Song of the Day is one I hadn't heard until recently. "1, 2, 3, 4" by Feist...

17 September 2008

Staff Meeting

Barack Obama is bringing out his "inner Reagan." And yes...that is a good thing (!) because in this election cycle, the Republicans and John McCain are Jimmy Carter.



Rolling. On. The. Floor. !!

A Third Poll

A week ago, John McCain led Barack Obama by two points (46% to 44%) in the New York Times/CBS News poll.

What a difference a week makes!

The current NYT/CBS poll:
Obama 48%
McCain 43%
The most stunning number? White women JUST LAST WEEK were with McCain by an overwhelming 53% to 34%. This week, they're with Obama, 47% to 45%!

Full poll details here.

Mid-Week Brain Break

Smarter than the average beagle...

Two New Polls and a Map

Two new polls show Barack Obama erasing John McCain's extended post-convention bounce. The horrible economic news from Monday and Tuesday, and the continuing insight into Sarah Palin's lies, distortions, and Cheney-esque escapades up in Alaska seem to have taken their toll.

Neither of these polls reflect voter sentiment follow today's sour economic report, so Obama's numbers could very well improve come the weekend.

Daily Kos/Research 2000:
Obama 48%
McCain 44%
Gallup:
Obama 47%
McCain 45%
New state-by-state polling shows the Electoral College map looking like this:



Obama: 293 electoral votes
McCain: 205 electoral votes
Undecided: 40 electoral votes
(270 needed to win)

A new CNN poll in Florida shows Obama and McCain tied, each with 48% of the vote. In Virginia, one poll shows Obama up by a couple of points, a second poll shows McCain up by a few, and a third shows the candidates tied. As such, I've painted both of those states green. But even if everything else on the map stayed as it is on Election Day and then both of the tied states fell to the Republican column, it wouldn't be enough for the McCain/Palin ticket. If Obama/Biden were to win the states in blue above, they would have 293 electoral votes, 23 more than needed for victory.

Things are still very much in flux. Last week the map showed a slight McCain lead in the Electoral College (it took about a week for those state-by-state numbers to reflect his slim national lead). But with Obama taking the offensive on issues of the economy, and McCain looking like he'd be Hoover redux, things are trending back toward the Democrats.

Complete and Utter Failure

Americans should read today's panic on Wall Street - the third in two days - for exactly what it is: A complete and utter failure of the Republican-run government. Four more years of such leadership would ruin us...



Today, Barack Obama went on the offensive, airing this 60 second ad in select markets around the country...

Is She Fuckin' Kiddin' Me !?!

What you hear out your window this afternoon is the collective sound of Americans from coast to coast slapping their foreheads in disbelief...

16 September 2008

Fundamentals

A superb ad, out today from the Obama camp...

Stumbling From Crisis to Crisis

As I said yesterday, the current Republican government is the epitome of chronic incompetence, weakness, and failure:
It didn't take long for the finger-pointing to begin.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency came under fire Sunday as emergency workers were left undernourished and dozens of trucks of water and food had yet to be set up at distribution centers around Houston and surrounding communities [in the aftermath of Hurricane Ike].

And no sooner had the agency — widely condemned for its glacial response to suffering after Hurricane Katrina in 2005 — drawn sharp criticism as its leaders and spokesmen began to say it was someone else's fault.

By the evening, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff said it was the fault of state officials who handed his department the "unexpected challenge" of having to prepare distribution points in addition to delivering supplies.
And these people want four more years in power?

It Was 1912

The electoral map from yesterday's "Which Election Was It?" post is from the 1912 presidential election. After elevating to the presidency in 1901 following the assassination of President William McKinley, President Teddy Roosevelt won election in his own right in 1904. The Republican followed long-established tradition and declined to run for a third term in 1908 (the 22nd Amendment restricting presidents to two terms was not enacted until 1951 following the four elections of Franklin Roosevelt).

Roosevelt's successor in 1908 was fellow Republican William Howard Taft. During the Taft administration, a rift grew between the two men, with the liberal Roosevelt (who favored land conservation, labor unions, and restrictions on the employment of women and children) becoming extremely disenchanted with the conservative Taft (who favored big business and judicial supremacy).

After failing to take the Republican nomination away from Taft at the 1912 GOP convention, Roosevelt formed his own party - the Progressive Party. (During a question and answer session with reporters, Roosevelt was asked how he felt. "I feel as strong as a bull mooose," he replied. And thus the Progressive Party also became known as the Bull Moose Party.)

Although Roosevelt couldn't stand the Democratic Party, his extremely successful second place finish granted Roosevelt his vendetta against President Taft and the Republicans. The Taft ticket came in third place, receiving an embarrassing 23% of the national popular vote and winning only two states (Utah and Vermont) equaling 8 votes in the Electoral College. The Progressive ticket won 27.5% of the vote and 88 electoral votes, and the Democratic ticket, led by Woodrow Wilson, won the election with 42% of the vote and a whopping 435 electoral votes.

Side note: While preparing to make a speech during a 1912 campaign stop in Milwaukee, Teddy Roosevelt was shot by a saloon-keeper named John Schrank. The bullet penetrated Roosevelt's chest, but was slowed by the steel eyeglass case and the 50 page folded copy of his speech that were in his coat pocket. Roosevelt, upon realizing the wound wasn't life threatening, told the crowd:
I don't know whether you fully understand that I have just been shot; but it takes more than that to kill a Bull Moose.
He proceeded to give the entire speech as blood stained his shirt. Doctors later determined that it was too dangerous to remove the bullet, and Roosevelt carried it in him until he died.

"Feel sunshine sparkle pink and blue..."

This one goes out to Gil...one of the best R&B/disco tunes of the late 70's..."Strawberry Letter 23" by the Brothers Johnson...

John, Ace, and Christian

The story has been all over TV and the web. But if you haven't seen the story of Christian the lion cub, then do yourself a favor and take the two-and-a-half minutes to watch this clip. It will make your day...

Too Dangerous To Be President

Quote of the Day:
John McCain is not somebody I would like to see with his finger near the red button.
-Phillip Butler, who served as a POW with John McCain during the Vietnam War.

This new ad hits the air today:



After eight years of incompetence and failure, is John McCain the type of guy we really want steering the ship of state?

Palin-tology

The Republican campaign is just getting whacko-bizarre. Sarah Palin, to a crowd in Canton, Ohio on Monday:
There Ohio was right out in front, right in front of me. The teleprompter got messed up, I couldn’t follow it, and I just decided I’d just talk to the people in front of me.
Uhhh...slight problem...the media people running the teleprompter that night say it was working just fine. And reporters who were given advanced copies of the speech that night confirm that she gave the speech as written, word for word. She didn't wing it.

I mean, really...this lying Fascist duo is beyond help.

Joe Takes On John

Democratic vice-presidential candidate Joe Biden took on Herbert Hoover...I mean, John McCain...yesterday during a campaign stop in Michigan...



Now that is why I endorsed the guy back in December!

15 September 2008

The Dishonor of John McCain

An ass-kicking ad from the Obama team...



I'll post ideas for ads I think should be produced over the next couple of days, but I must say I'm glad to see Team Obama going for the jugular!

Beth's Mom: An Update

As some of you may already know, our friend Beth's mom had a scare last month with an aneurysm. With the help of a dedicated hospital staff and the overwhelming love of her family, she is getting better with each passing day.

An update from Beth:
Skootching her down the bed, turning her legs to hang off, sitting her up, rocking back and forth; lots of prep for the big "step." And then we did it, mostly lifting with Janelyn (the physical therapist) on one side, me on the other, Dad supporting her knees so they didn't buckle on her. But she got vertical. Claire the Brilliant thought to get out her phone to
snap some pictures. I've included one so you can see the Team help
her make a huge leap. Be warned her scars are visible, and her hair
is about a quarter inch long, and my hair is dirty, and Dad has a
baldish spot. : )

We lifted her twice, setting her back down, and then Janelyn asked
Mom: "Do you want to go back to bed, or try one more time?" I about
cried as she responded " t r y o n e m o r e t i m e
" (they're watering again). Janelyn said she loved that answer--she
never hears it! That was her best "stand;" Janelyn said she felt real
effort, however slight, during that last one. I am of course over the
top thrilled. I wish everyone could have been there to help and
witness and be proud.
We're there with you in spirit, and are thrilled that she is making such excellent progress!

Big hugs all around.

The Fork In the Road

With my breath held and a steadfast refusal to panic, I have been keeping an eye on the presidential election polls over the past week or so. Most show the race is still tight - Barack Obama and John McCain are separated by an average of two percentage points - but unlike the pre-convention polling, which had Obama in a constant lead, it is McCain who is leading Obama by that two-point margin.

Can Americans really be ready to vote for a man who has proven time and again, beyond any reasonable doubt, that he will surrender his integrity (that one trait that was supposed to be his ace in the hole) in order to get elected? Can Americans really be ready to vote for a man who, despite calling himself a "maverick," has become the lap-dog of the current failed president? Can Americans really be ready to vote for a man who belongs to the political party that has driven America over the proverbial cliff? Are they really willing to reward eight years of failed, Fascist-style government with four more years of incompetence and failure?

Mark my words my fellow Americans, that is exactly what you'll get with John McCain.

Yes, perhaps you'd much rather have a beer with him than with Sen. Obama. Yes, I understand you respect his service in Vietnam. And yes, I am sure many working American mothers can relate to Sarah Palin.

That doesn't mean their election would be good for the country. In fact, after eight years of the worst presidency in the history of our great nation, I would argue that the election of the McCain/Palin ticket - a third Republican term - would be absolutely devastating to the United States.

Under Republican rule, the nation has been led over these last eight years by a failed administration (and for six years by an enabling Congress), who were unable to step up to the plate each time the going got rough. The amateurs running our government stumbled from crisis to crisis, eroding American will and turning Lady Liberty into the laughing stock of the globe, all the while bankrupting the American treasury, leaving the debt for your kids and grandkids to clean up.

George W. Bush may be constitutionally unable to serve a third term, but believe me when I say that electing John McCain would be tantamount to another four years of failed leadership, declined American morale, and weakened American prestige on the international stage. For while Sen. McCain may have bucked the current administration on one occasion here or another occasion there, the Republican presidential candidate has essentially been Bush's lap dog - or "Bush's Bitch," as I've called him - these last four years.

Unfair? Degrading? Insulting?

Tough.

After being beaten to a pulp by the Karl Rove campaign machine during the 2000 primaries (they sent out campaign fliers that were stunningly insulting to McCain's adopted daughter), McCain turned around four years later and practically marched with Bush to the San Francisco City Hall for a marriage license. Campaigning to re-elect a president of his Republican Party who insulted his family, McCain showed Americans for the first time that he was willing to sell his soul in order to win the White House. He proved during that campaign that he has absolutely no integrity.

And now, with his choice of the abysmally qualified Sarah Palin as his running mate, and with his campaign of lies, deceit, and bottom-feeding, Sen. McCain has proven to Americans that he is incapable of making appropriate decisions and that he cannot be trusted with the presidency.

After eight years of those qualities from the current president, can America really afford four more? Tell me, my fellow Americans, that you can look at the current record of Republican leadership and say, "Well done! Keep up the good work."??

We're at the proverbial fork in the road. Do we continue down the current path of acute and chronic incompetence, weakness, and failure? Or do we change course and head down the path that leads us toward a day when America's promise will once again be realized?

The answer, my fellow Americans, is the quintessential no-brainer.