My personal musings about anything that gets on my radar screen--heavily dominated by politics.


A Good One-Two Combination 

I saw a couple of pretty good ads yesterday as I was watching the Broncos debacle. Unfortunately, they were both for Obama.

The first featured Obama alone, in a leather chair in what looked like a library, speaking directly to the camera. In it, he says the collapse of the lending industry is the "final verdict" on eight years of failed Bush economic policies." Then he articulates three points to fix the system, and points listeners to his website where they can see the whole ten-point plan. Very simple, very smart--Obama talking straight to Americans, and beginning to articulate a "grand vision"--energy independence in ten years with an emphasis on creating jobs in America.

That "grand vision" thing is something John McCain has never gotten within sniffing distance of.
A lot like another aging, war-hero Senator . . . Bob something-or-other . .

The second ad was from MoveOn.org, articulating all the ties McCain has to Phil Gramm, and Tom Davis, and how all his advisors are neck deep in the problems that created the lending crisis. Or, at least, that's what the ad says. It's direct, hard hitting, and, more importantly, IT GOT ON THE AIR FIRST. So the friends of McCain are still, at best, getting their boots on, while this ad is making an impression all over the country.

A one-two punch that hits immediately after a week in which McCain was NOT the clear winner of a debate on his strong suit, Sarah Palin was underwhelming again in a face-to-face with Katie Couric (how bad is it to be out-done by Katie Couric? not exactly Walter Cronkite), and McCain's bold move to try to rescue the rescue seems to have been ineffective.

Now, on our side, I saw an ad from the NRA making the case that Barack Obama is going to take away our guns. Pretty unimpressive.

I'm wondering where in the world are the friends of McCain? Every ad that's been run against Obama--and a couple have been pretty good--has been in conjunction with the RNC, and that kinda handcuffs him on the whole attack thing.

If I don't see this ad by the end of next weekend's football action, I'll be about ready to write this off:

[narrator] MoveOn.org recently put an ad up attacking John McCain's "friends." MoveOn.org--the same organization that called General David Petraeus "General Betray-Us" [show graphic of NYTimes] while he was in the middle of turning the tide on the War in Iraq, wants to criticize John McCain's friends.

[show clip of Rev. Wright] ". . . not God Bless America, God D#*N America [superimpose picture of Obama with words "Barack Obama's friend and spiritual mentor"]

[show clip of Michelle Obama] " . . . for the first time, I'm proud of my country, I'm proud of America" [superimpose picture of firefighters and police rushing to World Trade Center, then superimpose picture of Obama with words "Barack Obama's most trusted advisor and wife"]

[show clip of Tony Rezko doing the perp walk; superimpose headline "convicted of fraud and corruption"; superimpose picture of Obama with words "Barack Obama's friend, financial advisor, and broker of sweetheart deal on Obama's Chicago mansion"]

[show picture of Harold Raines with words "Obama's economic advisor"; show picture of Jim Johnson with words "Obama Vice Presidential search chairman"; then show graphic of the two's history with Fanny and Freddie, along with their golden parachutes for when they left]

[show picture of William Ayers, morph it into his mug shot from 40 years ago; then show "only wishes he could have done more--that is, bombed the Pentagon and the Capitol more;" superimpose picture of Obama with the words "Launched Obama's political career with a fundraiser at his home"]

[narrator] The next time you hear a group criticize someone else's friends, consider the source. Consider whose friend THEY are. And then ask yourself, if these are his friends, why WOULDN'T Barack Obama want to sit down with Hugo Chavez and Mahmoud Ahmedinijad? He should be right at home in their company.

Leading With Your Chin--A Thousand Times Over!! 

The House Republicans just got WORKED!!

I don't care if the bailout was the worst piece of garbage legislation ever put together (and let's face it--that would take some real doing), it's hard to see right now how this comes close to accomplishing ANYTHING!

This was a set-up from the word go. To wit:

House leaders, meanwhile, did support the bill and did whip it. But this wasn't a party-loyalty vote; lawmakers were asked to vote yes, but they weren't threatened. They (probably) weren't bribed. Add all that up, and you had a power vacuum.

Add to that that Nancy Pelosi went to the floor of the House in the minutes before the vote and excoriated Republicans, at a time when she "wanted their votes", and . . .

In other words, the Democrats didn't really want this to pass.

So, here are the consequences:

:the stock market tanks--off 777 points!

:though 95 Democrats also voted no (because it didn't go far enough towards Socialism), 2/3 of the Republicans voted no--in other words, the Republicans beat this bill; we get the blame

:John McCain appears powerless to influence the members of his own party, much less across the aisle

:now the Democrats can pass whatever rescue plan they want, loaded up with goodies for ACORN, et. al, and there's nothing we can do about it.

This looks like the October Surprise, come early. It's--I must admit--a masterful political ploy by the Democrats. If this is how good they are at this, and this is how bad we are at this, then maybe we don't deserve to win.

Which is good, since we aren't going to . . .


Re: Colorado Ballot Initiatives, part III 

Since honest, upstanding groups like "Coloradans for Middle Class Relief" and "Protect Colorado's Future" have lumped Amendments 47, 49, and 54 together, and since I've spent some time and blogspace taking on the opposition to Amendment 47 and Amendment 49, I thought it was time to take on the opposition to Amendment 54.

To start with, let's look at the actual language of Amendment 54:

Because of a presumption of impropriety between contributions to any campaign and sole source government contracts, contract holders shall contractually agree, for the duration of the contract and for two years thereafter, to cease making, causing to be made, or inducing by any means, a contribution, directly or indirectly, on behalf of the contract holder or on behalf of his or her immediate family member and for the benefit of any political party or for the benefit of any candidate for any elected office of the state or any of its political subdivisions.

And THIS is objectionable . . . why?

As near as I can tell, and maybe I just don't know to read, but what this initiative does is prevent groups that are granted no-bid contracts that are worth more than $100,000 from giving campaign contributions.

Oh, yeah--you didn't know that? It's perfectly legal right now in Colorado for groups that win no-bid contracts with government entities to give campaign contributions to politicians and parties that helped them win the contract.

Think of it this way: right now, it's perfectly legal in Colorado for Halliburton to give contributions to Dick Cheney. Personally, I'm not sure I care--but if you believe the Left's meme on this one, then this would be Dick Cheney (assuming he's responsible for granting these contracts) being able to funnel millions to Halliburton through no-bid contracts, who then, in turn, turns right around and gives thousands back to the Dick Cheney campaign.

Of course, the appearance of impropriety is enormous, and if the two parties involved were Dick Cheney and Halliburton, the Left would be having aneurysms over this. But, since for the most part, we're talking about Democrat politicians funneling millions to unions, this is just okey-dokey with the Left.

And that's why the UFCW has spent at least $3.2 million buying the ads that oppose 47, 49, and 54 as a whole.

$3.2 million.

Think about that number. How many Coloradans are a part of the UFCW? Which translates into how many dollars per member? And do you really think every one of those members thinks that the sort of incestuous relationship Amendment 54 targets is really the way to do business in the state of Colorado?

But that's not the point, really, because unions misrepresent their membership all the time.

The point, really, is that the UFCW, through the groups mentioned above, is lying to the Colorado public about the effect of Amendment 54 by saying it "silences the voices of the public servants." Public servants still vote, they still get to participate in the political process, they can still raise money for politicians and they can still donate to causes, both as individuals and as a group.

What they SHOULD NOT have a right to do is engage in a system of quid pro quo with politicians and parties in an effort to fill their coffers and protect themselves by buying elected officials to cover for them.


Review: The Debate 

So, the debate went on . . .

and on, and on . . . .

The strategies were fairly straightforward: McCain wanted to emphasize his experience, his connections to people around the world, and Obama's naivete; Obama wanted to come across as calm and collected and seem "Presidential." And, as near as I can tell, they both succeeded.

The best answer I heard tonight was McCain's response to the accusation of "cutting taxes for corporations": of course you cut business taxes, because that encourages business to stay in America and create jobs and wealth here at home.

Here's the trouble for a Republican partisan: I don't believe Obama, and I'm pretty sure he's either lying or obfuscating, but I don't know how to bring that to light. I'm pretty sure the media won't do it; I don't think McCain is skilled enough at this to call him on it in debate; and so I wonder how those truths can come out.

For instance, here's my idea: Obama said in McCain debate "nobody's talking about Presidential talks without precondition, I was talking about cabinet level meetings . . . "; then show him actually saying in debate with Hillary "I would sit down, without precondition, with leaders from around the world, including Ahmedinijad, and Chavez . . . " Obama said in McCain debate "Yes, we have to increase domestic production of oil, and . . .yes, nuclear . . . '; then demonstrate how frequently Obama has actually voted against both of these. I think this debate may leave him vulnerable to charges of being a flip-flopper. But I think that's really the only way for this to turn into a clear win for McCain.

McCain was almost on the offensive when he was talking about Obama's inability/refusal to recognize that the war in Afghanistan, the war in Iraq, our perception around the world and our national security were all linked. Sadly, I don't think he was able to close the deal and drive the point home.

I don't think I know, at this point, what the "sound bite" moment is going to be from this debate--it wasn't as obvious as John Kerry's "global test." But I also think Obama made enough dubious assertions about his own positions that he's open to attack.

From a style standpoint, I don't understand why McCain refused to look at Obama--it seemed , I don't know, petulant. Obama looked comfortable and in command, and McCain looked experienced but uncomfortable. A little bit of humor would have gone a long way to deflecting that impression, but it was missing.

I would expect that this will be spun in the media as a big night for Obama. I don't know if John McCain or any of his surrogates have the skill to turn that spin on its ear in the next few days. But, perhaps, the impression of the wise old man will be the one that prevails in the long run.

Talk About Leading With Your Jaw . . . 

It's pretty clear now that McCain got suckered in returning to Washington, D.C.--IT WAS THE RIGHT THING TO DO, to do his job, but it's clear that a trap was being laid for him.

It has been painfully obvious for years now that the President was not going to engage the political warfare leveled against him and his allies, so there was not going to be anybody to watch his back when Harry Reid et al . . . levelled the charge that there was a deal until John McCain arrived. And, now that the deal is not in place after two days, it really makes McCain look insignificant.

I don't know if, in the long run, being seen suspending his political ambition to do the country's business will leave the stronger impression. But I would (sadly) say that this has not been John McCain's best week of the campaign.


Just To Review 

Here are just a few of the things Barack Obama will be known for, if the "professional journalist" class would ever do its job:

:all summer, John McCain challenged Obama to a series of lengthy, free-form debates; Obama ran from them

:When McCain took an ad congratulating Obama on his nomination, Obama responded by running an ad mocking McCain

:the Obama campaign has now, famously, created an ad mocking McCain for his inability to work email--never quite seeing the irony, I suppose, of criticizing him for doing a task that his war injuries makes very painful

:Obama has untertaken a concerted effort to shut the voices of the opposition through intimidation

:Obama has now been noted to be running a substantially more negative campaign than McCain.

:And now, with the country in crisis, Obama has rebuffed an offer by McCain to postpone the debate on Friday so that they could both get back to Washington to DO THEIR JOBS!

This is one classy guy. Gosh, I hope he gets to represent the United States to the world for the next four years.


With Days Like This . . . 

There's an internet rumor floating out there--I have no idea if its true or not--that has Joe Biden stepping aside for "health reasons" to make room for Hillary to be the Veep. Supposedly, this move is supposed to happen after the VP debate on October 2nd.

Of course, this would be ridiculous--even the supremely arrogant Obamessiah wouldn't go that far, that obvious. Even with the complete cover of the "professional journalist" class, he's not likely to . . . or, IS he?

If Biden sticks his head up a few more times, he's likely to get pulled based on psychological medication status.

. . .you guys haven't been completely guilt-free making fun of John McCain's inability to use a computer."

"I thought that was terrible by the way," Biden said.

"Why did you do it then?" Couric asked.

"I didn't know we did it and if I had anything to do with it, we would have never done it," Biden said. "And I don't think Barack, you know. I just think that was …

Of course, he's now offered a retraction, but the damage is done.

I wouldn't have thought the Toricelli Option would have been needed this time around, but the Palin selection has the Democrats rattled. They're even wasting huge resources running ads in Colorado targeting the women's vote.

This is not going the way Obama thought it would. And, amazingly, even the press is starting to notice that Obama is thoroughly versed in the "Chicago Way".

Everything comes down to Friday. Remember, four years ago everything was looking bleak until John Kerry let slip the "Global test" in the first debate--and Obama is on much shakier ground debating McCain on foreign policy.

Then Palin cleans Biden's clock on October 2nd . . . The next two weeks are going to be fun.

The Whole Story: Udall's Sweatshop Connection 

How many different stories have run in Colorado papers, breathlessly reporting on Bob Schaffer's dubious connection to a "sweatshop" in the Northern Mariana Islands. More than a couple.

So, where's the "professional journalists" when Mark Udall shows up with a sweatshop issue of his own?

kudos to Ben for unearthing this one:

Susie Tompkins-Buell and her husband Mark Buell each gave $2,300 to Mark Udall's campaign on June 19, 2007. Both Tompkins-Buell and her husband list San Francisco as their residence. Also on June 19, the Udall campaign took in nearly $50,000 from a series of San Francisco area contributors - his largest one-day California take in all of 2007. On May 31, 2007 - 19 days before all the funds poured in - the Udall campaign reported paying Tompkins-Buell $972.50 for "event personnel." . . .

Tompkins-Buell's company] Esprit de Corp. was found by the National Labor Relations Board to have illegally interrogated and intimidated $2-an-hour Chinese workers, and then to have shut down a factory to keep them from unionizing. The Department of Labor found that an Esprit contractor doctored payroll records and refused to pay overtime.

How does a candidate whose whole schtick is "championing the little guy" and whose best friends are unions square his rhetoric with the fact that one of his biggest donors/fundraisers made living off the sweat of the little guy? Is that really a relationship Mark Udall can just sweep under the rug?

Or will the "professional journalists" simply perform the same service for him that they've done for Barack Obama vis-a-vis Bill Ayers, Bernadine Dohrn, and Jim Johnson?

Re: Colorado Ballot Initiatives, part II 

We've all seen the ads: very sympathetic-looking man who identifies himself as a firefighter, interspersed with pictures of other firefighters doing heroic things, talking about how important it is for firefighters to speak out about things that make firefighters--and, indeed, the community--safer. And then he urges the defeat of Amendments 47, 49, and 54. Well, two nights ago I looked into 47, concluding it was hardly the stuff of gloom and doom. So, tonight, I thought I'd look into 49.

To start with, go check out Ben's take on it, then see the logic that the Rocky Mountain News follows in endorsing 49.

Here's the actual language of the initiative:

In the interest of advancing simple, ethical, and efficient government, the people of the state of Colorado hereby find and declare that public payroll systems should not be utilized to benefit private organizations and special interests except in accordance with this article. The people of the state of Colorado further find and declare that the requirements of this article must apply to all public employers, including all local governments and political subdivisions of the State.

Again, the EEEE-VIL of it all.

There are very nice provisions written in for taxes, judicial issues, charitable deductions, and other normal things that people have taken out of their payroll every day. What is limited is the ability of governmental entities to simply transfer money directly from their payroll accounts into the bank accounts of unions.

That's all. Does this mean that an employee can not sign up for an automatic deduction from their account, like most people do for car payments and other stuff? NO. All it says is that, for someone to give their money to the union, they have to take one extra step at their own bank because the governmental employer is going to stop doing it for them.

Somebody please explain to me how this "silences public employees."

Oh, wait. I know. See, the teacher's union has this great system whereby, once you are a member (and most teachers sign up when they first get hired), there is only a two week window every year for you to revoke your membership and cancel your dues. Under the new system, a teacher would be able to cancel their membership at any time by stopping the payment from the bank; that might cost the union some money.

Which, again, would probably be taken out of their negotiations budget, because we know the union is NOT going to slow down its financing of liberal candidates or pull back from some of its lobbying efforts.

Personally, I don't see the big deal. It's certainly not the end of the world. If the union is really doing its job and representing its people, than the people shouldn't have any problem signing the slip of paper at their bank that makes it possible to just hand the money over.

On the other hand, if people realize how little their unions actually do for them compared to the budget they operate under, maybe this really IS a big deal.


A First Attempt At Lowering Expectations? 

The AP ran with this headline this morning . . . and I think it managed to do it with a straight face:

Which Obama will show up for presidential debates?

But, I don't understand, Mr. Professional Journalist. Haven't you and your profession been telling us for months that this man is the Most Gifted Orator in a generation? Haven't you been fawning in your coverage of him and quick to point out how easily he controls a crowd's passions?

Oh, but that was during the Democratic Primary Season, when his many misspeaks were easily forgiven by his Lefty supporters.

I think the AP knows that the whole nation will be watching this time--well, except for those who have a life on Friday nights--and all the "ums" and "uhs" and incoherence won't come across as well. Or, as the AP itself puts it:

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.

"Lifeless, aloof and windy" is not really how I'd describe John McCain's debate style. There's also a lot of good words that I wouldn't use with him, but, whatever else he is, he does come across as authentic in live debates.

The real issue, of course, is not what is actually said in the debate. The real issue is what the news media chooses to show the public the next morning--I'd put money on very fawning coverage of Obama.

Which is why watching the debate for yourself is so important! I know--it's a Friday night. I know . . . but it's the future of the country. Only if everybody on our side tunes in with passion, and then many many of our gifted techno-people go onto YouTube immediately afterward to post the bad Obama/good McCain moments do we have a chance of coming out of this debate in good shape.

Life is Not All Politics 


Yeah, sure, they benefited from both some amazing luck [DOINK!] and some bizarrely bad game management on the part of the “21st ranked” West Virginia Mountaineers.

And, sure, they couldn’t get within sniffing distance of a score after the first ten minutes until the referee put the ball down at the 25 in overtime.

But a win is a win is a win. And for a program that has been desperate for wins for the past four years, this was huge. And on national TV (hello! Recruiting. . . ) on a night that not too much else was going on.

I’d say they still have a long way to go. But the defense is better than we thought, the really young offense didn’t make any game-changing mistakes, and the kicking game won it when it had the chance.

I actually think the game next Saturday in Tallahassee could be a lot better than anybody thought it would be—hey, last year CU played Georgia tough between the hedges. Could you imagine CU coming home to go into their conference schedule with a 4-0 record?

It could happen.


Re: Colorado Ballot Initiatives 

First of all, if you are looking for a real in-depth analysis of the ballot initiatives, you should do what I do: READ BEN! He's got the goods.

As a teacher, I am often assumed to have certain political leanings. Just for fun, I often play along, just to see what my colleagues have to say.

Yesterday, the union representative at one of my schools came back from a district-wide meeting in breathless distress over this year's ballot. She said that, based on what was told to her in her meeting, there was the potential that the passage of Amendment 47 could mean the "end of teacher representation, and the school district would no longer have to follow any rules about how they ordered you to spend your time." She even went so far as to say that the passage of 47 would be more devastating for schools than the failure of either the Mill Levy increase or of the Bond election.

If you've been around Jefferson County for any length of time, you'll know what a huge statement that is. The state's largest school district absolutely lives and dies by the biannual mill levy election ritual. So for something to be even MORE important than that is, well . . . big.

Of course, there is something to be said for the usual suspects. The teachers' unions, particularly that in Jefferson County, has hardly been a model of common sense and wisdom for a long time now; so for them to reflexively scream that the sky is falling over Amendment 47 seems about par for the course.

What is Amendment 47, you might ask? Well, not that it matters to the union, but here are the pertinent sections:



OOOOOHHH. The sheer EEE-vil of it all!

Seriously, this is what the union is all worked up over.

For the record, I neither belong to the teachers union, nor do I provide any financial support to the teachers union. And yet, somehow, I've managed to stay employed with all the benefits of the negotiated agreement for close to two decades now.

I'm tempted find some variant on this question to ask "my" union rep: so, if the union does lose membership because of 47, where do expect it to start cutting first--its PAC activities, which flood hundreds of thousands of dollars into hard-Left causes and candidates; its lobbying activities, which guarantee that Big Education is a player during the legislative session; or its negotiations, which are what it is actually supposed to do?

Yeah. I'd put my money on that third thing, too.


Missed Opportunity/New Opportunity 

I'm not in the habit of giving advice to the Obama campaign--though, God knows, they need some new ideas kicking around there right now.

But I'm seeing the whole Palin/email hack as a tremendous opportunity for Obama to really act like an agent of change. Here's what he should have said immediately after the news broke this afternoon:

The successful attempt by some to hack into Governor Palin's private e-mail account is criminal; the further actions by those persons to post that information, pictures, and various personal items on the internet is a low, base, cheap trick.

I can promise you one thing: if the person or persons who did this have any affiliation to my campaign, they will be out of a job. Immediately. Further, we will hand those persons over to federal authorities for the proper course of judicial action.

I am saddened that all of this seems to have eminated from a website that is generally friendly to my cause. And I am asking all of my supporters--ALL OF THEM--to stop trafficking in this materiel, to take all of it down off your websites immediately, and to never take this approach again.

This is the sort of thing that keeps good people out of public service. This is the sort of cheap campaign trick that makes Americans lose faith in the process.

There are serious issues that we need to resolve as a country, and we cannot do it if we are constantly looking to take down people from across the aisle with this sort of attack.

[And now, if you don't mind, Barbra wants to have a "sit-down," so I must jet away to Malibu.]

Oh, sorry . . . . that last part probably shouldn't be there.

But, since Obama doesn't seem to have made any statement on the attacks on Sarah Palin's privacy today, he leaves himself open to a counterattack. Probably not from McCain himself, who shouldn't be seen coming to her rescue; and not by Gov. Palin, either--she would do well if she could find some way to make a joke of this. I'm thinking a high-level female supporter of the campaign would do well to make this statement:

The attempt by some on the Left to invade the privacy of Gov. Palin is deplorable, it is shameful, and it is an embarrassment to the election process we are going through. No person, of any political affiliation, should be subject to having their personal lives broken into and laid out in this fashion.

Unfortunately, this has become the pattern of attack from the Left throughout the whole 21 day candidacy of Governor Palin. Starting with the media, then followed by the DNC and elements of the Obama campaign, and now with this, the Left has shown a remarkable level of calumny and hostility towards Governor Palin.

And, while we certainly recognize that Senator Obama is not in control of every element of his support, we are disappointed that he has not called for an end to this, and for the prosecution of those responsible. Unfortunately, this, too, is all part of the pattern we have seen from Senator Obama--cozying up to questionable persons, whether criminal like Tony Rezko, violent like William Ayers, hateful like Jeremiah Wright, or now despicable like these people--and then having to jettison them from his campaign when they become politically untenable.

How are we to now evaluate Senator Obama's message of "Hope and Change" when so many close to him are clearly so without hope that they engage in this sort of activity, and so many of them are fully steeped in the same sleazy politics that defines the Chicago political world the Senator came up through?

I suppose a few more $11 million fundraisers at the homes of Hollywood elites could buy the Senator more bumper stickers, but they can't hide the hypocricy of his support.


Time To Get Back On Offense 

Sure, it's only been 24 hours . . .

The Obama campaign is trying to make great "hay" over McCain's comments yesterday that "the economy's fundamentals are strong" or something like that.

But, as usual, the Obama himself went TOO FAR

Today, in Golden, Obama declared the financial turmoil "the most serious financial situation in generations."

McCain should immediately follow up today's speech calling Obama an "opportunist" with something like this:

Yesterday, Senator Obama described America's economic situation "the most serious financal situation in generations;" he even went so far as to say that it's the worst its been since the Great Depression.

That was exactly what the doctor ordered: panic.

Markets are sometimes brutal, and they have their own way of taking care of the bad players. When lending companies give money to people who don't deserve it, who are bad risks, then they open themselves up to the sort of problems that we've seen lately.

But the answer is never panic.

Let's be clear--Monday was a bad day: the stock market lost almost 5% of its value. But this was far from the worst day we've seen, even within this generation. In 1987, on Black Tuesday, the stock market sold off 22% of its value.

But it recovered.

When Senator Obama talks about generational problems, he's obviously mindful of difficulties we've had many years ago. For instance, there was a period of history when the unemployment rate was over 10%, when the inflation rate was over 10%, when we had energy shortages and lines at the gas station. And this was during a period of heavy industry regulation, a period of very high taxes, and a period of stifling restrictions on American ingenuity.

What the Senator won't tell you is that his economic plan is for high regulation, high taxes, and stifling restrictions.

And panic. Don't forget the panic.

The Senator has responded to this crisis with a statement that is bound to rile the markets even more, and by calling for a return to the policies of the 1970s. This is not leadership.

But it IS change . . . bad change, but still change.

The problems in the financial markets are deep and difficult--but they are not impossible. The market will take care of the companies that have failed, the judicial system will take care of the executives who failed in their fiduciary responsibilities.

This is NOT the time to panic and keep hoping that bad financial news will keep your opponent's rnning mate off of the news.

This is the time for calm leadership, a steady hand. And a McCain administration would proceed based on simple principles:

:first, do what can be done to make sure that the American people don't see their retirements and their portolios run down to nothing.

:second, hold responsible those who, through policy or through practice, drove these institutions into the ground--make certain that there are no $40 million severance packages for people who reduced the American housing market to rubble

:and third, add only so much new regulation as is necessary to see that this exact scenario does not happen again. We are, generally, not wise enough to know what the next big crisis is going to be--it makes no sense at all to kill the American economy by adding reams worth of new regulations that won't address the last crisis, much less the next one, and which will do irreparable harm.

Now is not the time to Panic, my friends; now is the time for a calm, steady hand--one with the experience to know better than to multiply the problem with complications.

And it is certainly NOT the time to take America back to the 1970s


Catching Up 

A series of other obligations has kept me off of my keyboard for a few days, so here's the spew of what has accumulated in that time.

:Charles Gibson All I need to know, really, is this: my wife watched about ten minutes of the interview, concluded "He's a JERK!" and then turned to something else. I can't believe that that wasn't the dominant reaction all over the country.

:Sarah Palin I thought she seemed a little juiced up for the interview, like she might have had a little too much caffeine beforehand. But, given the tone of the questions, I can only imagine what was actually going through her mind.

:ABC NEWS should be ASHAMED (not that the Left has any capacity for shame) for the editing it of the interview (as reported by Mark Levin)

:NYTimes threw a big old flurry at Sarah Palin over the weekend--to no avail. She's still standing, still dancing around the ring, like Rocky in the third round with Clubber Lang, while the Grey Lady is fatigued in her corner, running out of credibility.

:The media has clearly concluded that it would rather lose all of its credibility than lose this election.

:Have you ever noticed how angry the Left gets when our side joins the "Culture Wars?" They cry "foul" with all the irony of the Soviet Union complaining that the Czecks shot at them back in 1968.

:From where I sit to watch my television, it would seem Republicans have figured out the 527 game, and are staying in the game to win it. Every distortion. . . er, ad. . . by Mark Udall is matched by one by Bob Schaffer; and every outright lie by one of Udall's supporters is matched by a counterpunch from friends of Schaffer. I've even seen a number of ads run in the Denver market for State Senate and State House candidates. Very encouraging, indeed.

:Speaking of ads for State Senate . . . yesterday I saw a new ad up for Libby Szabo, who is an excellent candidate for the open seat in the Arvada area. And, after hammering away at energy issues for the last two months, this one was about education. And I thought to myself . . . "OOOOHHH! Getting in the OODA Loop! Excellent! " Evie Hudak is a weak candidate--a career tool of Big Education who simply thinks this is the next logical step for her career. Sadly, such steps rarely have actual agendas, and hers fits that bill to a "tee."

:roxblogging for the second, sad time this year I will mention the Rockies. To quote one of the local sportscasters, "If last year featured 'Rocktober,' this year features 'Sucktember.' " 'Nuff said.

:How 'Bout That Shanahan? Sure, the game was saved by a blown call . . . but it could just as easily been given away by a bad coach's decision. The only thing I can think of, other than that he had a "gut" like he said in the presser, was this: he has a kicker who just made a 52-yarder, who maybe he trusted to get an onside kick if he needed to, and one timeout to play with. If the 2 fails, he gets the onside, two quick hits to receivers who nobody can cover, and a shot at a long field goal to win it. Plus, putting it in overtime gives him an instant (coinflip) 50/50 shot at losing, since we couldn't stop anybody, either.

Either that, or he knew he was riding an unusual wave of luck, and just wanted to play out the streak. On the house's money.

In any case, that was a gutsy call. Not exactly been Shanahan's style over the years . . .a refreshing change.


"Lipstick On A Pig" and other Democratic Follies 

I think it's safe to say that the Democrats are in full meltdown mode right now.

Starting with the most important gaffe, the One's "lipstick" comment, I would have to say that he did himself no favors, either in the gaffing or in the defending. For what it's worth, my wife did not see or read about the comment until this morning--her immediate reaction was "he's talking about Palin. Oh. My. God. What a jerk!"

Whether he intended it or not--THAT'S WHAT PEOPLE HEARD. And he can't take that back.

But then to go to a friendly audience this morning, where he takes no questions, is safe from challenge, and issue that smarmy, condescending counterattack in which he has the AUDACITY to say that it's the media's fault is, frankly, SMALL of him.

So, for the record, in the last twenty-nine hours he's been perceived (let's be generous) to have taken a swipe at his opponent's VP pick, and then attacked a media that the general public really believes is completely biased towards him, anyway.

That's a pretty good day's work, Senator.

But we're not done yet.

No, then his own running mate goes on to acknowledge that Hillary would have been a better choice for Veep.

The chairwoman of the South Carolina Democratic Party says Sarah Palin's primary qualification is that "she's never had an abortion."

Then some obscure Tennessee Democrat likens Obama to Jesus while equating Sarah Palin to Pontius Pilate (for the record, Democrats really ought to avoid making religious references--they seem to botch them pretty badly).

And, just for fun, let's bring up Biden one more time, this time for inviting a wheelchair bound state legislator from Missouri ( I think) to "stand up."

Don't you have to wonder how serious the talks in Democratic circles have become about the "Toricelli Option," throwing Biden under the Obama bus in a couple weeks (days?!) and replacing him with Hillary?

Nobody expected a close race. And that fact that it is, combined with the Democrat's sense of entitlement to this election, has really got them unspooling.

And it's kind of fun to watch.

High Heat From The Western Slope 

The Grand Junction Sentinel nails Mark Udall to the wall:

Udall is a Johnny-come-lately to the we-have-to-do-everything-we-can solution to the nation’s energy woes. . . .

Udall said, “We need to throw in the kitchen sink” to solve the energy crisis.
Maybe he’ll throw in the kitchen sink, but he won’t throw in drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. And it’s only been recently, like since House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told Democrats it was OK to do so, that he has reluctantly agreed to support offshore drilling. He’s had more than one opportunity to vote for offshore drilling as a member of the House, but has declined repeatedly to do so.

And of course he wants to release oil from the nation’s strategic oil reserve to, he believes, help drive down gasoline prices. The strategic oil reserve is for national emergencies. Electing Democrats to the Senate is not, in our view, anything remotely close to an emergency.

Mark Udall fits the classic mold of the Western Democrat--pose for a while as a moderate, pretend your actual voting record doesn't exist, and then count on a HUGE money advantage to beat your opponent into the ground so you can have your election victory.

Sadly, four weeks of endless attacks on Bob Schaffer don't seem to be doing the trick for Udall.

Again, in what the Dems expected to be a pretty easy race, things are a bit dicey. Expect the really sharp elbows to come out soon.

Re: Lipstick On A Pig 

I think there are three plausible explanations for Obama referring to "putting lipstick on a pig" at an event in Lebanon, Virginia.

A. The generous side of me wants to think that Obama was simply falling back on an old Southern colloquialism

B. Then there's the "Freudian Slip" Theory: he had lipstick on the brain because it was the first line of hers (of several) that were more memorable than his entire speech, and it just found its way into his answer.

or, 3. Or there's the idea being pushed by Hugh Hewitt that Obama was comparing Gov. Palin to a pig.

The problems I have with A. are numerous--of all the places Obama has lived in his life, the American south isn't one of them; surely someone as politically savvy as he would recognize the obvious comparison that SHE drew to herself with the lipstick line in her speech, and would avoid even that little colloquialism; and, if you listen to the audio (which I heard on the radio, but haven't found a link for), it seems pretty obvious that the audience he was speaking to thought he was referring to Gov. Palin. Even worse, getting that reaction from the audience, he doesn't realize what he's said and STILL goes for the old fish line.

3. also does not seem very plausible to me, either. Surely, the "most gifted orator of this generation" could manage to recognize the danger in making that reference deliberately, given her speech last week, and would know better than to take that approach. Surely . . .

Which leaves B. Which I also don't totally buy. Sure, it might have been a slip, but if it were, he would surely clear things up once he heard the crowd's reaction.

Wouldn't he?

I think it's obvious that he's bitter at all the attention she's been getting, he's bitter at being upstaged by this upstart (when was the last time you saw a clip from one of HIS speeches?), and he has no idea where to go with his anger because his whole schtick is "a different way."

Maybe he should try to cling to his guns or his religion a little . . .

What I think actually happened is that somebody in a staff meeting let that line fly a couple days ago, and it got a huge round of laughter. And, in his arrogance, Obama assumed that his audience today would be similarly receptive to that brand of humor, never even considering the possibility that things like that do NOT sit well with a lot of people in the country.

Moreover, I think when you combine his megalomania with his current standing in the polls, you're starting to see both his Chicago roots and his condescension for flyover country, as manifested in STUPID MISTAKES.

Make no mistake--this is an unforced error, and just a plain, old bonehead mistake. Even if it's not what he meant to imply, he and his merry band of national compaign rookies should know better. And it's stuff like this that tells Americans an important fact about Obama:

If this is the sort of stupid stuff he's susceptible to under the pressures of the campaign trail, what sort of blunders is he likely to make under pressure in the real world when, say, China moves to take Taiwan?

If this is how he campaigns, how in the world can he be trusted to lead?


Breathtaking Bias 

Not that it's at ALL surprising.

I had the misfortune of being out of touch for most of the day today. So, this evening, when I had a chance to catch up on the news, I did my usual flip over to FoxNews--it was at commercial. So desperate was I for information that I actually flipped down to CNN.

Big Mistake. Bad for the the heart kind of mistake.

I turned there just in time to see this story:

For decades, Sarah Palin went to church with people who spoke in tongues and believed in faith healing and the "end times." Her former pastor says the Pentecostal past of the GOP vice presidential nominee may now be being downplayed to avoid misunderstanding. But the pastor, Tim McGraw, says he's sure religion influences Palin's policy-making.

Of course, this is all delivered in dark, skeptical tones by one of the "team" of reporters sent to Alaska to dig up dirt . . .. er, um . . . . find out about Sarah Palin's history.

Understand, I'm not a Pentacostal (Assembly of God, to be specific), so I don't have a dog in that particular fight.

But, COME ON!!

If CNN is really all that interested in darkly intoning about the "fantastical" nature of Sarah Palin's belief structure, then let's have a little balance, shall we?

--How about we ask Joe Biden about exactly how the bread and wine actually become the Body and Blood.

--How about we ask Barack Obama . . . oh, never mind--his church has already been thrown under the bus.

--How about we ask Nancy Pelosi which miracle she believes happened according to the Beatification of Our Lady of Guadalupe.

--How about we ask Harry Reid (NOT Mitt Romney) when exactly Joseph Smith was anointed by God and what were the circumstances of that.

You can see how this could get ridiculous.

Thank goodness CNN has shown the "professionalism" and the journalistic restraint to only ask about Sarah Palin.

Still, . . .one wonders why they chose her, and not one of the others.

I'm telling you, this is barely the tip of the iceberg. The media and the Obama campaign are in full melt-down right now, and they are absolutely going to throw the entire kitchen's-worth of dirty tricks at our side if things don't improve for Obama in the next six weeks. Some are saying the momentum is all on our side; if memory serves, that was also the case in mid-September two years ago. Then a little-known slimeball from Florida named Foley hit the scene, and it was 'game over.'

Expect seven or eight "Mark Foleys" to emerge from the media in October if McCain-Palin are still running ahead.

By the way, for a more even-handed, WHOLE STORY approach to the current religion debate, check out the links Hugh Hewitt has up on the American Bishops' smack-down of Nancy Pelosi two weeks ago, and then just today of Joe Biden.


The State of Play 

Well, we're one week past Labor Day now, and the conventions have passed, so it actually matters what things look like right now--as opposed to a couple months ago.

Gallup Daily Tracking: McCain 48%, Obama 45%

Rasmussen Daily Tracking: McCain 48%, Obama 48%

USA Today/Gallup: McCain 54%, Obama 44%

RCP Average: McCain 46.7%, Obama 45.7%

Um . . . .WOW! That's one surprising convention bounce.

Eight weeks is an eternity in politics, so you can be pretty sure that the race will still change a few times between now and November 5th. But . . . WOW!

You can tell the Obama camp is getting worried--all you have to do is contrast the end-of-convention messages from the opposing sides: McCain sends a simple congratulations to Obama in prime time in the middle of Obama's big moment; Obama buys an ad ridiculing McCain and Bush in the middle of McCain's big moment.

And that simple classy act by McCain tells you what you really need to know about these two men . . . and explains at least in part why McCain is ahead right now. I think the country is beginning to see the contrast:

The Man Who Talks the Talk vs. The Man Who Has Walked . . .Limped . . .the Walk

The Orator vs. The Hero

The Middleweight Dancer vs. the Heavyweight Brawler

The Poseurvs. The Patriot

Ok, so maybe the whole country doesn't see that last one--that's probably mostly me.

At any rate, it's a battle now, and the Obama people are probably both shocked and angered. Expect the REALLY sharp elbows to start getting thrown. This is a Chicago brawl now . . .

expect it to get ugly.

Irony Is Just Lost On These People 

Here's the headline running on ComcastNews right now:

Obama Clarifies Abortion Statement

And here's the actual body of what he says:

"Probably . . . What I intended to say is that, as a Christian, I have a lot of humility about understanding when does the soul enter into . . . It's a pretty tough question.

"And so, all I meant to communicate was that I don't presume to be able to answer these kinds of theological questions."

There you go.

That "clarified" it for you, huh?


On McCain's Speech 

Color me surprised.

No, it wasn't a great speech.

No, he didn't deliver it with an orator's command.

But, nonetheless, I had two moments of very strong reaction. The first was during the video, actually--the image of his father standing at the border looking towards Hanoi is heart-wrenching. Any father can imagine and identify with the power of that mental picture, even if they can't get within a million light-years of the actual pain. And the second was as he was describing his own shame and embarassment at being broken by the North Vietnamese. The simple humility of sharing that moment of his life is a staggering. Every man (and many women) imagine that they would be strong and brave in the kind of adversity he faced, even if less than a tiny fraction of them would actually be able to survive it. But for him, an acknowledged war hero, to admit that even he didn't make on his own, and only survived the ordeal by the support and example of his brothers in arms makes any claim to humility, courage, strength or belief by Biden or Obama ring laughably false.

Not that either Obama or Biden ever try to make a claim to humility.

On a substantive level, it was nothing special. He's going back to the roots of the Republican Party, fighting corruption and shrinking government, and that's good. But that's not surprising. His one moment where he could have gone for "soaring" and "inspirational" fell pretty flat, as his call to the "great cause" of energy independence got swallowed by the hall, and he never quite made the case.

But the takeaway is what will be really interesting. The "professional" journalists will have their take, no doubt, and it will, no doubt, be somewhat dismissive. For me, I think it's the overwhelming impression that this is a great man. An unbelievably courageous, staggeringly dedicated, often-wrong, and strangely bull-headed GREAT MAN. I've admired and been impressed by politicians before (not often), but I've not had the chance in my lifetime of voting for and supporting a truly great man whose life story just humbles me.

I still disagree with him on a lot, but . . .

And, to be honest, that he would show his character with the Palin pick, that he would choose to surround himself by women who are THAT strong, is just as impressive. Strong women are a mixed blessing, and his comfort with them shows just how strong his character is.

So tonight I will be making my first donation to the McCain/Palin team--and I will include a note to the news directors of ABC, NBC, CBS, and CNN indicating that their behavior over the last six days played a role in my decision. Beyond that, I'm going to take back something I said a few months ago, and go online to sign up to volunteer to help out the McCain/Palin ticket.

Maybe times like these are actually SO serious that we need to entrust them to greatness, rather than just ideological correctness.


Hurricane Sarah 

The first impression of any speech, it seems, is always on a visceral level: how does it feel? I mentioned last night that my wife, a rather apolitical person, was riveted by the speech. I was, too.

The first twenty minutes or so was what it needed to be--basic biography. Standard stuff, no big deal. But somewhere around the twenty minute mark (and my times may be off) she left the perfunctory behind and hit her stride--somewhere right around the pit bull/lipstick joke (which, word is, wasn't in the written text). As she found some humor, she seemed to warm to the room, and that was very bad news for Democrats.

I don't think I've ever, in my life, had more than two jaw-drop reactions in the course of a single political speech--it's just rare that a politician manages to pull the necessary trifecta of a direct hit with a surprise setup with a wink and a smirk in her delivery. Even her "throwaways" were damaging--"when the lights go down, and the styrofoam Greek columns go back to some lot somewhere . . ." In this speech, I think I had as many as FIVE jaw-drops. The first couple you can chalk up to surprise, I think: I didn't expect her to come out with such sharp elbows. But after that, there's no excuse for surprise on my part, and the only explanation for my reaction is that she scored staggering direct hits on the Obama campaign.

But, besides being effective in that particular role, I think Sarah Palin managed one of the great feats every politician aims for: authenticity. She rings true, both in the hall and on the screen; she doesn't have to address the "middle class", she IS the middle class; she doesn't need to burnish her "everywoman" credentials--she's got the hockey bruises to prove them. Biden has never come within spitting distance of authentic, and the more Obama goes of prompter, the less authentic he seems.

After the visceral reaction, there's always the question (assuming the politician passes that test) of "what did he (SHE) actually say?" On this count, I thought it was strong--not super, but strong. I loved her defense of small towns: we work, we raise families, we fight our wars . . . Both a tribute and sentimental statement of the power of small towns, and a little shot across the bows of both the Obama campaign and the "professional" journalist class. But beyond that, I don't think she really proposed much of any great moment--not a big thing, but just a point. She tried to make a case for herself as a reformer, and I think she was effective at that, but I don't think she was able to lay to rest anybody's concerns that her Alaska narrative would not transfer too well to Washington.

And, finally, there's always the "takeaway" question: what survives the moment and shows up in the memory of the American people the next day? And I'm not sure I can answer this question--the list is too long. Some will remember the jabs, others the visual of her smirking in anticipation of the next jab, the "eBay" line, others the picture of her holding her precious little baby . . . For me, what remains is the picture of the 8-year old licking her hand and then smoothing down the hair of the baby. There is something so utterly, unabashedly REAL about that moment, that I think it will always be my first impression of Sarah Palin. Of course, it helps that I'm the father of a 7-year old and an infant, so I can identify with that interaction. But that interaction tells me volumes about the natural qualities that are present in the home that Sarah Palin has built with her husband Todd. This lady is you and me, she's been on both sides of the payroll, and now she's on her way to Washington.

I really score this a complete Home Run. She responded to unbelievable pressure and scrutiny, and came through not just gracefully, but with a technician's command of the ring (to steal a boxing metaphor). I think Joe Biden had better be worried.

NOTE: I heard this morning on CNN that the "Inquirer" is sending four more reporters to join the three already in Alaska chasing down rumors of her marital infidelity; on top of that, Comcast/AP has as one of their teases a story about her attending five colleges in six years. Get ready, folks--the media has its talons out for this woman.

Hurricane Sarah 


I don't have time or energy tonight to write at length--certainly not to the degree that this speech deserves--so I will save that for tomorrow.

But let me just leave this first impression: the Bewitching Mrs. Best Destiny, who has the most active Bull S%*! alarm I've ever seen (a fact which has caused me no small amount of consternation over the years), and who, because of that, has almost no tolerance at all for politicians, WAS RIVETED by Sarah Palin tonight.

I was an easy sell--I wanted her to succeed; my wife had no stake in it, and loved what she saw.


Speeches I Hope To Hear 

From John McCain:

My opponent in this election has a compelling personal story. Born to interracial parents at a time when interracial marriages were rare, he was raised in a family of divorce, at a time when that was also rare. Happily, his extended family was there to lend support and structure.

Raised in Indonesia and Hawaii, he then proceeded to college in Los Angeles, and then in 1981 he transferred to Columbia University. From there, four years in New York working, then on to Chicago for three years as a community organizer. On to Harvard in the late 80s, where he became the first African-American editor of the Law Review. From there, back to Chicago, with a brief stint in Bali to write a book, and then into public service as a state legislator, senator in 2004, and then Presidential candidate.

My opponent has had an extraordinary life, a testimony to talent and opportunity. Opportunities, I would add, that are only available in America; opportunities that mark the greatness of this country I love so much; opportunities that are only available when Americans work together, without regard for party or politics, to make the world better for the people around them.

My life, on the other hand, has not been particularly about talent. Never a great student at the Naval Academy, I somehow managed to graduate and enter into the finest organization any man could ever wish to be a part of--the United States Navy. I am, and have always been, very proud to have worn the same uniform my father and my grandfather wore; the same uniform the John F. Kennedy wore; the same uniform that Farragut, Halsey, and Rickover wore, as well as countless millions others whose names are not so familiar.

After the Service, I then followed the lead of another great American, Ronald Reagan, and entered into the political service of my country.

You see, my friends, I was taught at an early age the wisdom of "The greatest among you must be your servant." My family lived the value of service, and ingrained it deep into the fiber of my being.

So, while we have taken very different routes to this place in history, Senator Obama and myself now stand at a critical juncture in America's history. The American people have a duty and a responsibility in this historic election--to learn the ideas of both candidates, to make an informed judgment about the quality of their service to their country, to take the measure of the character of these two men, and to decide which man has the ability to bring about change in this country.

Ladies and gentleman, there are many issues on which Senator Obama and I differ--but on one point we agree: Washington is broken. This past session Congress only managed to pass one of thirteen [I'll stipulate this may need editing] appropriations bills; Congress never managed to tackle the difficulties with our immigration system, in spite of my efforts; and, when the country was being strangled by the price of a gallon of gasoline, Congress went skulking away on their five-week vacation, refusing to deal with the pain of the American people.

Congress went skulking away because the party in charge of Congress is so beholden to its extreme wing that they would rather run from a problem than be faced with the possibility of taking a difficult vote.

This is the system that, sadly, governs this country. I have been, for my entire career, somewhat outside that system--sometimes taking politically difficult positions or advancing ideas that shake up the Washington status quo because the American people deserve--and should demand--that their leaders SERVE their interests. Pretty speeches and dramatic stagecraft do very little to make the lives of ordinary Americans better. Work, hard decisions, self-sacrifice: these are what make the lives of ordinary Americans better.

That is why I am so honored and proud that an "ordinary American" of great courage and great accomplishment has agreed to join me on the ticket. Sarah Palin is a remarkable woman who has not sought the spotlight but, rather, has sought to clean up a cesspool of corruption and make lives better for Alaskans.

Mrs. Palin, I am humbled that you have joined me in doing just that in Washington. Ladies and gentlemen, if you really want Washington cleaned up, who better to do it than a wife and a mother who has run the largest state in the union and who brings to the table an unimpeachable record of character and service?

And Back In the Real World . . . 

It would appear New Orleans survived Gustav, thought the entire state and region is still getting hamered by the storm. No breaches (yet), and very little death.

Hats off to Gov. Jindal, Mayor Nagin, the Coast Guard, the National Guard, and everybody else involved in protecting the people of New Orleans from this. God Bless you all!

On The Palin Selection, In New Light . . . 

I am assuming, for this post, that the McCain camp is being truthful when it says it knew about Palin's daughter's pregnancy prior to her selection to John McCain's ticket.

There was a good movie from a few years ago--not a great movie, but a good movie--called"Invincible." It was the story of Vince Papale (played by Mark Wahlberg), an ordinary Joe who, as a gimmick by a rookie coach, got a tryout with the Philadelphia Eagles back in the 70's.

At one point in the movie, the coach character (Dick Vermeil, played by Greg Kinnear) is debating final cuts. His wife walks in and asks him how it's going, and he says he's stuck on Papale.

wife: Aren't you fond of the saying that "hard times don't make character--they reveal it."

Vermeil: Oh, character isn't the issue--he's got loads of character.

wife: Who said I was talking about him?

In light of today's news, I get the feeling that a similar debate went on in the McCain camp at some point last week. And, to no surprise, John McCain revealed his character.

With his back against the wall, needing to do something bold and exciting, he stuck with Sarah Palin, even though this skeleton in her closet was bound to come out.

I have NO problem with him sitting across the table from Kim or Ahmedinijad or Putin. Character will always rise to the occasion. Hats off, Senator.

More On The Speeches I Would Like To Hear 

Since, maybe, it looks like we might actually get to hear some of this this week. Again, from Gov. Palin:

I have personally been through five pregnancies; each one of them has resulted in a blessing to my family. We are now, as a family, going through another pregnancy, this one unplanned, but which will most certainly produce another wonderful blessing to my family.

I can tell you clearly, as a veteran of six pregnancies, that more than one of them ended up being inconvenient, if not downright painful. And yet, I have once to hear a single person in my house refer to the little child that is growing in its mother's womb as anything other than "the baby."

Granted, in the third trimester, they each take on a few additional nicknames . . .

But they are never, at any point, in any way, anything to my family other than a "baby."

Our opponents, on the other hand, both get nearly 100% ratings from the National Abortion Rights Action League. In fact, Senator Obama once cast a vote so that even babies that survive an abortion to draw breath outside the womb can still be "terminated."

Unplanned pregnancies are painful; they are difficult; they are trying . . .

But, Senator, if you truly wish to "restore America's moral standing in the world," perhaps we should start by ending the wanton killing of "inconvenient" babies.


Just One Question 

Even though she probably won't be able to give this speech, I would love to hear this line from Gov. Palin:

There are a lot of people concerned about putting someone of my experience just on heartbeat away from the Presidency. To those people: if you are concerned about me being just one heartbeat away from the Presidency, why aren't you terrified to put someone with even less experience than me just ONE VOTE away from the Presidency?

Here's Comes Gustav 

All prayers and well-wishes to the residents of the Gulf Coast. This looks pretty bad as it's making its way towards New Orleans.

The Speeches I Hope To Hear, . . . but won't 

McCain has ordered the convention to tone it down due to Hurricane Gustav.

Not sure how I feel about this. I think it's probably a good thing to do, if you assume that New Orleans cannot handle what's about to happen, and that it will become a tragedy. On the other hand, there is so far every indication that Bobby Jindal is handling this superbly, and that there will be minimal loss of life. This could be a wonderful opportunity squandered by an over-cautious expectation of trouble.

But, then again, if seriousness in handling major crises is to be the measure of the next President, I would prefer that he--McCain--err in this direction.

Still, I would have loved to see the visual of McCain calling out to Jindal on national TV and congratulating him demonstrating the powerful positive effects in people's lives of good governance.

For the record, Jindal ordered the mandatory evacuation on Saturday--two days in advance of the storm; Ray Nagin didn't order the evacuation of New Orleans until 10 am Sunday for Hurricane Katrina--less than 24 hours before landfall. Might have made a little difference.


Physicists call this a non-elastic collision. As in, NO BOUNCE!

You won't hear this on the media because they're all verklempt about Hurricane Gustav. But CNN/Opinion Research has a new poll out yesterday, taken completely after Obama's speech and the naming of Sarah Palin, and it's bad news for Obama.

A CNN/Opinion Research Corp. poll released Sunday night shows the Obama-Biden ticket leading the McCain-Palin ticket by one point, 49 percent to 48 percent, a statistical dead heat. . . .

A previous CNN poll, taken just one week earlier, suggested the race between Sens. McCain, R-Arizona, and Obama, D-Illinois, was tied at 47 percent each.

So, apparently, the Obamacles failed to make the sale.

In addition, the Rasmussen Tracking poll moved back in McCain's direction by one point, and the Gallup Tracking moved back towards McCain two points.

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