Saturday, August 30, 2008

The Time of the Sexy Librarian

I mean, look at her. She would definitely be a VPILF.

Yesterday I compared Sarah Palin to Dan Quaye and Spiro Agnew, and the more I think about this the more I realize that that is exactly what she is. She is not there to steal the PUMAs or some of Barack's younger voters. She may be able to do that--a few former Hilary supporters have come out saying that they are voting for McCain because of Palin. But the real reason she is there is for the Republican's conservative base.

She really is Dan Quayle. Quayle was put on the ticket with Bush 41 because he was a darling of the conservatives, who didn't really trust George HW Bush and were not expected to back him in droves they way they had the republican in the previous two elections. Sound familiar? Similarly, Agnew was put on the ticket to shore up conservative support for Nixon (who is still referred to as "the last liberal president"). In both cases they were little known outside conservative circles but hugely popular within them and they were easy to ridicule among liberals. Sound familliar? Oh yeah: in both cases it worked. They got the conservatives on board and they got Bush and Nixon elected. John McCain may have made an historic pic for VP, but it was also with a good sense of history.

Sarah Palin is absolutely adored by conservatives. Talk Radio has been touting her as THE rising star of the conservative movement for months now. She is not just pro life, anti gay, and prof family, but rabidly so, out there with James Dobson. She has a son who is about to ship out to Iraq (though so does Biden, so that may be moot). She wants to drill in Anwar. She is a hard-core member of the NRA (ok, she gets props from me for that). The fact that she is a relatrively young and beautifl woman is only a very nice fringe benefit (and what does it say about John McCain that both his wife and his runningmate are former beauty queens?).

One of Obama's big hopes was that Conservatives would be tepid toward McCain and stay home from the polls. Fat chance. The conservatives will come out in droves to support McCain now. They will open up their checkbooks, man the phones, hit the streets, and drive the little old ladies to the polls. McCain's organization just doubled in size and his fundraising probably went up by 50%. And a lot of those conservatives will be doing this in the hopes that McCain will die in office (let's face it, a real possibility), and that their darling will become the new George W. Bush: an inexperienced, extremely popular governor who is a staunch conservative, who will enact faith-based policies at home and abroad, and who will appoint enough strict constructionists to the bench to finally get rid of row v. wade.

And wouldn't it be ironic if, after all Hilary Clinton went through these past two years, this shameless ploy worked, McCain were to die, and the first woman to be president of the United States turned out to be this republican barbie doll with no experience, no credentials, and a virulent anti-female record?

Friday, August 29, 2008

McCain Taps Cressida

So John McCain has made a radical, surprise, maverick choice for is Vice Presidential running mate and picked Governor Sarah Palin of Alaska. It is actually a great choice. McCain is trying to get Hilary's dissafected women supporters, and so picking a woman was obviously a big consideration. But going out on a limb and picking a woman whom nobody outside Alaska has ever heard of, a comparatively young woman (she's my age, 44) was a bold stroke, targetting two of Obama's supposedly core constituencies, women and young voters. And this is not a Geraldine Ferraro pick, largely symbolic in a race the republican's can't win. This is designed to give McCain's campaign a big boost and it will. The timing was designed to take the wind out of Obama's sails after his triumphant speech (how could you call it anything else) in front of 84,000 supporters at Mile High Stadium.

It creates a lot of trouble for McCain too. Can a woman who has been governor for less than two years be more "ready to be comander in chief" than Obama? I think it deflates McCain's biggest argument against Obama.

It is also, let's face it, pure pandering. McCain is trying desperately to fend off a well run and inspiration campaign, a grass roots movement, in support of Barack Obama. Pandering to women, to young voters, while still pandering to his conservative base (Palin is one of the most strident pro-life governor's in the country) is a cold calculated move designed to win him the election by shoring up his own base while splitting Obama's. And it might work. Cold calculated political moves are ow elections are won.

Two things occur to me, one of which bodes well for McCain but the second bodes very well for Obama:

Palin as a choice is way out there. It is likely to be ridiculed on the left. But as has already been pointed out by some bloggers, Dan Quayle and Spiro Agnew were both ridiculed on the left as well, and Nixon and GHW Bush still won. This bodes well for McCain.

But what really strikes me from last night is the fact that Obama's candidacy is, as he said, not about him. It is about a movement. It is about a grass roots movement that he has tapped into and which is sweeping him along with it. It used to be said that conservativism was stronger than liberalism because conservativism was a movement while liberalism was a collection of causes. But what Obama represents is a real movement. A postmodern progressive movement, one demanding real substantial change in Washington. This type of movement has occurred before. Bobby was part o such a movement, and yesterday I talked of Obama as the second coming of Bobby. But last night and this morning something solidified in my head.

Obama may not be the second coming of Bobby. He might be the second coming of Ronald Reagan.

I'm not kidding here. What I witnessed from Denver last night was amazing, and it wasn't just the charasmatic rock star quality of Barack Obama. It was the frenzy of the 84,000 people who were there to support him. And as I think of my own feelings to his candidacy, and hear what others are saying, and as I heard him talk, I was reminded of Reagan and his call to change Washington fundamentally, that "government cannot solve your problems, government is the problem." And now after twenty-eight years of Reaganite neglect, the people of the United States are demanding that government pay attention to them once more, and they have chosen a great communicator to be their standard bearer. That is Barack's call, and he is backed by a grass roots movement of people who have taken over the democratic party and are now poised to take over the country.

McCain better watch out. He is not fighting a bunch of lilly livered liberals. He is up against he second coming of Ronald Reagan. And he is in for a fight.


Bring it on

Yes, Senator Obama's acceptance speech was magnificent, but didn't it sound like he'd lifted big parts of it from The American President?

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

The Second comign of Bobby

Barack Obama’s well choreographed spontaneous appearance at the Democratic National Convention tonight was a masterful bit of stagecraft, and it capped a day and night of moments that cast the Democrats of the party of today and the party of tomorrow. I actually watched the roll call, and was inspired when my senator, Hilary, stood up and called, as Willie Brown did in 1992, for the suspension of the rules. Bill’s speech went after President Bush while having the greatest living president say in unequivocal terms that Barack Obama was ready to be our next president. And Joe Biden finally went after John McCain, at one point accidentally calling him “George.” Pat Buchanan had complained that there hadn’t been enough red meat, that the democrats hadn’t attacked Bush and McCain hard enough in prime time. Up till that point the only high-profile person who had really laid into John McCain was John Kerry, and war hero or not, he doesn’t have a reputation as a fighter. Biden, whom the Republicans referred to yesterday as a “knife fighter” made a start of cutting him up, but we know the republicans and we know the axiom: you don’t bring a knife to a gun fight. The fight will get bloodier, and Biden had better be ready. But tonight he got in some good shots. The other thing he did was bring working class North Eastern Catholic ethics and pugnacity to this fight. His story about his mother telling him to bloody a bully’s nose was to me the most important moment of his speech, because it said to me that John McCain had better watch out, because this guy is a fighter and he is a going to bloody John McCain’s nose.

But when Barack came out the house nearly came down. Barack is the rock star. But more than that, he is the second coming of Bobby. That was after all the point of Teddy Kennedy’s speech on Monday. Bobby Kennedy was, in many ways, even more of a martyr, more of a tragic figure than his brothers. The other day a man came into the shop and saw a picture of Bobby on the wall and burst into tears. People feel Bobby’s death still, more than they feel John’s. I think it’s because his death felt like piling tragedy upon tragedy, and also because it came in his moment of triumph, but mostly it’s because he, like Barack is, was a candidate of an angry and hopeful mostly young constituency, and his death deflated their hopes. Barack is the second coming of Bobby. He is the hope of this generation, and like Bobby his charisma, his ability to inspire, his story, are carrying people to new heights of hope.

PS. I think the Republicans will indeed leak their VP pick on Thursday to steal some of the news cycle from Obama. But Hurricane Gustav will steal their thunder in more ways than one.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


You know, for just a minute, as the whole convention was on its feet and their cheers threatened to collapse the roof, that Hillary was actually going to win the nomination, that there would be a movement from the floor to nominate her and the wave of mass Hilary hysteria would take over and sweep her into the nomination.

That is how inspiring she is.

Instead she became Obama's head cheerleader. It was pretty impressive. She hit it out of the park. Of course the pachyderms will pooh-pooh her and the brainless feebs over at Fix News will twist her speech into something a bitter tirade against the black guy, but if it gets that last 30% of her supporters to back Obama (and I'm betting it gets about 22% to pony up) she will have done her job.

I have got to say though, right now, tonight, I want Hillary for president.

News Flash

Hurricane Gustav is steaming toward the Gulf of Mexico, where it will become a category 3 storm. Buy oil futures now.

Not sure what this means

I'm not sure what this means, but the author of "100 Things To Do Before You Die" has died. He was 47. According to Popeater he only got about half the things on his list done. I think the moral is "Don't write a book about what to do before you die." It's kind of like "Never play Superman."

Monday, August 25, 2008

Whores one and all

I've got to say, I am not sure which media circus I would rather have gone to, the DNC or the Olympics.

Well, ok, yes I do. I'm an Olympics whore. Sue me.

But the convention would be so much fun. I'd love to be there. I'm a bit too mischievous though. I would probably stir the pot way too much.

But not as much as the media are doing. All this talk about Hilary and her people making demands, about a rift in the party, about how angry women are and how hurt Bill is. Well, yeah, they are those things. They lost and losing is hard. But the way *I* read the polls, I see 70% of hilary voters support Obama and most of the rest are undecided. A very small number have committed to McCain. 70% is a good number. But the whores in the mdeia and the polling whores all want a melodrama, they want conflict, a happy convention doesn't give them the ratings they need. And the so called liberal media, which is supposed to be in the democrats collective pocket, are gift wrapping the election for John McCain by fanning the flames of discontent.

I think they'll kiss and make up by Thursday. The convention is underway. The mud pit is open and the greatest gladiatorial spectacle in the world is about to get underway. Let's pour a shot of Chivas, light up a cigar, raise a glass to Hunter S. Thompson and Huey Long, and enjoy the show.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Georgia on my mind


So, until Steve Muhlberger commented on this post, I didn't realize I'd accidentally posted it to my fighting blog ( and not to this one.

Georgia on my mind

Is John McCain crazy? Does he want to completely undermine the President? Can he really be shooting craps with foreign policy by meddling in Georgia? He is dictating policy. He is sending his advisors, almost like a shadow cabinet, to Georgia. In other words, he is doing exactly what he accused Barak Obama of: being presumptuous and assuming the mantle of the presidency. But where Barak was only delivering a speech in Berlin (and not, by the way, at the Brandenburg Gate), John McCain is doing it in a war zone, a war zone where Russia is operating. Not presumptious: reckless, dangerous.

Or is he just a genius? Let's face it: the average American doesn't care about citizenship and she doesn't care about meddling. The average American doesn't think it's improper if a presidential candidate starts meddling in foreign policy. I think people want their candidates to insert themselves into the world. I think they like it. And in middle America, where Ronald Regan is still a God, I think John McCain standing up and saying "we are all Georgians" elicits memories of Ronald Regan at the Brandenburg gate and at Reykjavik. This is Russia after all. Mr. McCain will be seen as standing up to Russia, the evil empire (nobody knows or cares about the difference between the Russian Federation and the CCCP). Foreign policy is beyond most Americans. We don't care that much. Nor do we care that McCain's talk foreign policy adviser is in the pay of the Georgians. We don't care about surrogates. We care about tough guys talkking tough to bullies. That's John McCain.

He is being presidential. And it will play well in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, and Colorado. And it could make him president.

And, by the way, do you get the impression watching the real secretary of state, Condi Rice, that she is jumping up and down inside screaming at her own imaginary Putin "Finally! It's about F#$king time! Seven years I've been waiting for you guys to start shooting at something! What took you so long?"

Maybe Putin wants McCain to win and dialed it up to 11.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

I could medal in nerd

Those of you who know me know that this is one of my favorite times to be alive because two of my favorite media events are in full swing: the Summer Olympics and the presidential elections (it’s also Leap Year). I’ve been taking about the elections far too much lately. So…..

Readers of this blog know that I am a politics nerd, but even more than politics I am an Olympics fan. My sweetie and are both addicted. I have been watching as much as I can. I record Equestrain. Today, God help me, I watched some mixed doubles badminton, men’s team saber, team jumping, ping pong, field hockey, bicycle track racing, and hand ball. Right now rowing is on. Last night I got home in time to watch the 100 meter finals, and I’ve seen the 4x100 medley relay with Michael Phelps in replay about five times now (they keep showing it over and over). I also enjoy the big sports like track and field. Not so much gymnastics.

I love to watch the sports you don’t see often, like Archery or shooting.

I love the hype.

I hate the post event interviews.

I hate synchronized swimming. Sue me.

I prefer timed events to judged events. Judging (as anyone who watches skating knows) is way to subjective and political.

I love watching the USA men’s basketball team.

I've never seen Judo or Karate broadcast (though I have seen Tae Kwon Do).

My favorite event at one time was wrestling. I still love it.

My favorite event now? Modern Pentathlon: I love it. I have competed on some level in every discipline in Modern Pentathlon except for jumping. Since I was in high school I’ve wanted to compete in modern pentathlon. I’ll enter an event one day, just to say I have done so. I even know how it could be marketed: it is the action hero sport. You run, swim, shot, ride, and fence. It’s like you’re playing Zorro for medals.

And I am so pissed that NBC isn’t broadcasting it this year!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Cold Warrior

Well, John McCain is in his element now. The war (and let's call it a war, shall we? not a border skirmish or an incursion but a war) between Georgia and Russia has given him a great boost of energy. Belligerent posturing seems to be his preferred rhetorical style. His rhetoric the past few days has us returning to the days of the Cold War (before the "end of history" if you will recall), the era of Regan and Goldwater and Viet Nam POW camps. According to McCain, Russia is trying to re-establish its old empire. Well, forget for a moment that we have always been a pretty imperialistic nation ourselves and consider that there is indeed a conflict going on that has no easy answers. Georgia has two provinces wherein the population is predominantly Russian and where the majorities did not want to leave the mother land to be part of Georgia. It is very like the situation with the Kurds in Northern Iraq, whom we are more than willing to help gain autonomy. But since Georgia is an ally and Russia an old foe, we have to play the unionist and not the confederate card on this one (even though we played the confederate card fifteen years ago when Georgia wanted to split from Russia after the wall fell).

McCain must feel cheated now that a cease fire is in place. I don't know if the cease fire will last, but it is bad news for McCain because memories of the Cold War only boost his chances. He once accused Barak Obama of being willing to loose a war to win an election. Would it be fair to ask whether or not Mr. McCain would be willing to loose Georgia to win an election (the one in Asia, I mean)?

Here's another item worth pondering. Both Mr. Obama and Mr. McCain favor Georgia's membership in NATO. Under the NATO treaty, we would have had to go to war with Russia this week. That's right, a real shooting war with the other great nuclear power in the world. One hopes that would have been enough to deter Russia from invading as it did for 40 years in Europe. But it is certainly worth a public debate among the candidates as to whether or not expansion into the former Soviet bloc is worth risk. It's also worth examining the advisors on McCain's payroll who have ties to Georgia. But no: we have to talk about Hilary's campaign infighting and John Edwards' affair.

Friday, August 01, 2008

The Truth

Thanks to my buddy Chris Scott for posting this link t his livejournal. The next time anybody lies to you and says that Senator Obama hasnt' done anything since he entered the sentate send them to The Zoo. There they will see in detail the 45 bills the Senator has sponsored or co sponsored which have become law, as well as all those bills he proposed that did *not* become law. One thing is clear: Obama has worked hard as a Senator and concentrated in specific areas, notably Energy Policy, Health Care, Foreign Policy, and Veteran's affairs.

There is definitely substance there, no matter what lies the McCain camp may try to spread. Not only that, but he has been effective in getting good laws passed. His competence should no longer be in question.