Friday, October 31, 2008
From the Associated Press release on Terkel's passing...
Terkel's politics were liberal, vintage FDR. He would never forget the many New Deal programs from the Great Depression and worried that the country suffered from "a national Alzheimer's disease" that made government the perceived enemy. In a 1992 interview with the AP, he advocated "pressure from below, from the grass roots. That means the people who live and work in cities — that used to be called the working class, although now everyone says middle class."
Terkel was born Louis Terkel on May 16, 1912, in the Bronx. His father, Samuel, was a tailor; his mother, Anna, a seamstress. The family moved to Chicago in 1922 and ran a rooming house where young Louis would meet the workers and activists who would profoundly influence his view of the world.
"It was those loners — argumentative ones, deceptively quite ones, the talkers and the walkers — who, always engaged in something outside themselves
For more on the passing of Studs Terkel click here.
Thursday, October 30, 2008
As the 2008 presidential campaign speeds to a conclusion, and as certain talking heads remind us that John McCain has come back from political death on more than one occasion, and that Barack Obama's apparent lead in the electoral college is not yet a done deal, I can't help but think of some ancient and profound words once uttered by a Power Greater than we mere mortals. But more on that, very shortly.
Some say that Obama has the math in his favor; a projected 286 electoral votes ( states either solidly for or leaning to the Democratic candidate), with 270 votes needed to win the presidency.
But what if the smart guys are wrong?
What if John McCain and Sarah Palin pull an "Eli Manning to David Tyree", past the two minute warning, to sink the what was thought to be an invincible Obama Juggernaut?
And as to prove that God is not yet a registered Republican the following passage popped into the mind of this blue state- cafeteria Catholic- left leaning Democrat's mind.
For what has a man profited if he gains the whole world, and loses his soul? Or what will a man give in exchange of his soul?Mathew:16:26
John McCain, erstwhile political maverick and self proclaimed "straight talker", and Sarah Palin, who's had a past association with the secessionist Alaska Independence Party (and who is married to a former registered AIP member) would have gained the presidency and vice presidency of the United States by waging a campaign which at its core had little to do about issues, and everything to do about discrediting the Democratic opponent.
It would be a victory gained, not by ideas, but by waging verbal trench warfare, trying to make Barack Obama look like the worst character to come on the scene since George Lucas created the evil usurper Darth Sidious in the Star Wars trilogies.
The tactics of McCain/Palin, and their surrogates harnessed and exploited fear, innuendo, character assassination, and in some cases plain old fashioned bold faced lies. These are the weapons used with great effect by Karl Rove and his henchmen in destroying John Kerry in 2004. George Bush didn't beat Kerry- the Republican 527's did with their Swiftboat ads.
To be candid, those people who are running the so called Republican Party aren't really Republicans at all. There are NeoCons, and TheoCons- but the party of Goldwater and Reagan and "TR" and "Honest Abe" doesn't exist. It passed on after a long illness sometime during the "Dubya" Administration.
McCain and Palin cannot win on issues; that was admitted by a staffer weeks ago. So they went for Obama's jugular. They've tried to label Obama as a friend of a onetime 1960's radical, because they once sat on the same board back in Chicago. Then smack him with the charge of "palling around with terrorists". Still not working? Then call him a socialist. Take it a step further- let a disgraced political hack like Tom DeLay go on MSNBC and tell a national audience that Obama was a "radical Marxist". Or have a tongue tied Michael Goldfarb accuse Obama of having anti-Semitic connections on CNN.
And how can we forget "robocalls", or the usual right wing radio gasbags, or the rogue operatives who continue to allow the lie that "Obama is a Muslim" gain a foothold on the uneducated and the gullible?
In McCain/Palin world, there are "real Americans", and "The Others"- The Liberal Axis of Evil; The Northeast Corridor, Hollywood, and Anyone Who Subscribes To the New York Times
In short, McCain and Palin are channeling the spirit of the late Dixiecrat George Smathers, who once accused Smathers' opponent, Claude Pepper, of having a sister who was a practicing thespian, and a brother who was a known homo sapien.
In the words of MASH's commander, Col Potter, "That's alot of horse hockey".
Instead of "letting freedom ring" McCain and Palin are relying on the two headed monster named Fear And Ignorance to win the election.
And they have, and are willing, to sell their souls in order to achieve this end.
The ultimate tragedy of McCain's tactics is the permanent damage he has done to his legacy, win or lose. If Obama wins the presidency he will have a crisis within his first 100 days, and it will not be from a foreign power. It will come from within. Because McCain and Palin's tactics will leave Obama wounded before he is even sworn in. Millions of McCain/Palin supporters will have bought into the false accusations, and will have nothing but contempt for a man who spent months being smeared by their candidates. A poll in Texas released as I type this says that 20% of the Texas "undecideds" still believe that Obama is a Muslim. Others will be believe that their President is a socialist....maybe even a Marxist.
Because McCain and Palin said it was so.
And if there is an upset, and McCain is elected President? Well, the unofficial "favorite Republican" of the nation's Democrats will have gained the unending antipathy of those same Democrats. Not just for running a campaign that was filled with lies and misleading information, but for being a man who seemingly betrayed his princples, and signed a Faustian bargain with the Neocons and TheoCons he once railed against and despised.
His true colors have indeed, shone through.
Win or lose, in the eyes of "this one", John McCain is damaged goods.
And it does hurt "this one" to say that.
After accusing the Los Angeles Times of conspiring with Democrats to withhold a tape given in confidence to the newspaper showing Senator Obama at a Palestinian- American event in Chicago, Goldfarb then told CNN's Rick Sanchez that Obama has other ties with people that harbor ant-Semitic beliefs.
Sanchez then asked Goldfarb to name a second anti-Semite in the Obama circle of friends. Goldfarb refused to give a name.
See the video below to see the the exchange.
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Closing Argument- Norfolk, VA, October 28, 2008
Raleigh, North Carolina- October 29, 2008
DON'T Let Up!
Former Republican House Leader Tom DeLay called Senator Barack Obama a "Marxist radical" in an interview with Chris Mathews on Hardball on MSNBC.
DeLay, forced to resign in disgrace and currently out on bail awaiting retrial on money laundering charges, told Mathews that Obama has no respect for the Constitution and must be "anti-American" because of his past associations.
For a refresher course on Tom "The Hammer" Delay click here.
TRANSCRIPT: CHRIS MATTHEWS: Mr. Delay are you happy with the tone of the Republican campaign? Phrases like "Socialist", "communist", "Anti-American" all kinds of stuff being thrown at Barack Obama. Is it right, is it fair, is it smart?
TOM DELAY: Absolutely it is, I wish McCain would be a little more assertive to be honest with you. I think what's gonna win this is when people get to the polls, they just can't bring themselves to vote for a radical like Obama, its Déjà vu all over again, hes more to the left than Gore or John Kerry put together and the American people are starting to realize that. And thats what I think McCain oughta be focusing on, not that Obamas not ready, Hillary Clinton tried that. Its that he is too radical for the American people.
MATTHEWS: Where would you put him on that spectrum between- well, youre using words like socialist, yourehappy, I guess okay with words like communist. We had somebody on this show the other day who said he oughta be checked out for being Anti-American. Where would you put him? You think hes anti-American in his values?
DELAY: Chris, I tagged him as a Marxist months ago, particularly when you look at his relationship with Jeremiah Wright, his relationship with William Ayers. Its not that Wright makes outrageous sermons, its that Jeremiah Wright is a black, liberation theology preacher. And twenty years of association means that he must agree with the Marxist theology of black liberation theology. Same with William Ayers, its not that hes a terrorist, its that this guys so anti-American he wants to completely destroy America and build a new America[..]
How can McCain win the election? Simple- just have an "Act of God", like the first measurable snowfall to hit New Jersey in October in 36 years, making driving treacherous, knocking down branches and powerlines, cutting off electricity to thousands- and keeping hoardes of Blue State Democrats from the polls..
Have a similar storm that hit the Mid Atlantic on this Tuesday miraculously materialize NEXT Tuesday....
And repeat the process in Pennsylvania....Virginia.....Ohio.....North Carolina....New Hampshire, etc. etc........
Do you think Reverend James Dobson is already working on that "Weather Prayer?"
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Monday, October 27, 2008
Among her quotes;
Religious-right honchos are girding the troops for political apocalypse. Townhall magazine, owned by Salem Communications, one of the largest Christian broadcasters in the country, ran a September feature, "Obamageddon: Could We Survive a Barack Presidency?" This month evangelical publishing giant Stephen Strang, whose magazine Charisma endorsed McCain, predicted that "life as we know it will end if Obama is elected." Last week, the political arm of James Dobson's Focus on the Family sent out a "Letter from 2012 in Obama's America", a 16-page (pdf) parade of horribles, and talk radio show host Janet Porter imagined that Christians will be imprisoned with Obama in the Oval Office.
Yet how could you get the foot soldiers marching on election day if they would happily stay home waiting for the Rapture? That's why the leadership is promising God's punishment for failing to resist Satan's temptations. God won't be happy if America doesn't elect his "chosen" candidate, Sarah Palin, whose supporters believe is a modern-day Queen Esther. God will punish the country who reversed course on his carefully laid-out plan and elects the Muslim-socialist-terrorist instead.
A very intriguing article....and if I didn't know better I'd swear she's exaggerating. But she isn't. For some reason, the hyperlink isn't working, but please copy and paste the link below for the complete article.
There...that wasn't so hard, was it?
Sunday, October 26, 2008
In Miami, with Rosie Perez and Nydia Velasquez
In Denver, Senator Barack Obama addresses 100,000 (10/26/08)
The Defining Moment; Will America Be Better Off Four Years From Now?
The editorial board of the Anchorage Daily News, Alaska's largest newspaper, has endorsed Barack Obama for President of the United States.
In its endorsement the editor said the following regarding Republican Senator John McCain's running mate, Governor Sarah Palin of Alaska.....
Yet despite her formidable gifts, few who have worked closely with the governor would argue she is truly ready to assume command of the most important, powerful nation on earth. To step in and juggle the demands of an economic meltdown, two deadly wars and a deteriorating climate crisis would stretch the governor beyond her range. Like picking Sen. McCain for president, putting her one 72-year-old heartbeat from the leadership of the free world is just too risky at this time.
Click the link below for the full text of the paper's endorsement.
Anchorage Daily News
Update! Six More New Jersey Papers Endorse Obama
Among the quotes.....
"We respect John McCain's long service to this nation. We owe him much. We do not owe him the presidency," The Record of Bergen County wrote.
Click the link below for the Associated Press Story courtesy of WGN.
6 NJ Papers For Obama
Friday, October 24, 2008
That revelation was simply this; in more than 50 posted entries since I started this blog last month I typed in the name "George W. Bush"- instead of getting a "drop down" prompt for a commonly used name or subject, I got nothing.
In this, probably the most important presidential race of our lives, I had not mentioned the name of the incumbent President of the United States one time. There were mentions by third parties on embedded videos....but I have never mentioned George W. Bush once, with only eleven days until election day. True, this blog isn't always political in nature, and will become more general information oriented after the election- but it was astounding to me that the President has become so irrelevant, not only in my eyes, but to much of the nation. And even to members of his own party.
I was never a fan of George W. Bush- but even a self proclaimed Democratic partisan like myself can't help but feel a bit moved by the fall from grace by the man. In a way, he became the ultimate victim of his eight years in office.
Below, a little short Bush-McCain retrospective, with music and pictures.
Click here for a CNN story and video on this topic
"Dubya" has made his official endorsement of the McCain-Palin ticket.
That is, once the Prez was able to locate Senator McCain (with and assist from Todd P.)
Because George Bush always gets his man.....with one notable exception.
((Due to copyright restrictions and problems embedding the nbc.com version, click here to see an authorized version of the skit, with Tina Fey, Darrel Hammond, and Will Ferrell).
Thursday, October 23, 2008
OK, so its already been seen by more than 500,000 people. But its late in the afternoon, and I have yet to say anything about Sarah Palin on this fine October day.
So, without further ado ( what's the opposite of "ado"? "Adon't"?)....
Here's The BALLAD of SARAH PALIN
The Ballad of Sarah Palin
Song Written, Directed, and Performed by Mason Storm
Produced by Warpedcorp
Born in a Hospital in Idaho
Didn't meet McCain until a week ago
Now she might be our next V.P.
She openly admits that she used to smoke weed
Which normally would be totally cool with me,
But she said she didn't like it, and that is suspicious.
Now she lives in the coldest state
Her husband took her fishing on their very first date
They got married and had five kids
She was doing politics, while he was catching squids
Sarah, Sarah Palin
Queen of the Alaskan Frontier
A card carrying member of the N.R.A.
Disagree with her, and she'll blow your ass away
Sarah's very fond of shooting Moose
Bald Eagles, Puppies, and even a Goose
Why do they call a group of Goose's Geese?
But not a Group of Moose's Meese?
I don't know, its weird
But you shouldn't kill em
Sarah isn't known for trying to conserve
She wants to drill for oil in a protected reserve
Doesn't support abortion, or being gay
Its not her fault, just the Republican way
Sarah, Sarah Palin
Queen of the Alaskan Frontier
And now we've come to the end of the song
Alaska's Governor is a Hockey Mom
Sarah soon will make history
As the first gun totin', nut job, female V.P.
Sarah, Sarah Palin
Queen of the Alaskan Frontier
Sarah, Sarah Palin
Queen of the Alaskan Frontier
There was calamari, and Caesar salad. Spaghetti Bolognese and Eggplant Parmesano. And "to die for" lemon gelato. There was great service, incredible food, music, and atmosphere.
And other than our small party of five, there were only two other tables being served in that restaurant the entire night. We were there for nearly three hours.
The owner of the restaurant is a local chef of with a great reputation, an immigrant from the Old Country- I'll call him "Mario" for this piece (the reasons for disguising his identity will become evident very shortly).
It was close to 9:00 PM on this Wednesday night, and Mario talked to our group as we were leaving. We almost got him to divulge the secret of his artichoke recipe, but he never really caved to us. We asked him how was business. He only shook his head, and asked, "When are things going to get better?"
Mario watched his once thriving year old restaurant limping by, barely able to make payroll. That night the staff consisted of one waitress/hostess, an assistant/"go-fer" in the kitchen, and Mario. He conceded that most weeknights were like this one, and only Sundays kept him from disaster.
Wall Street crumbles, and Main Street gets flattened by the debris.
Before leaving we started to talk about the presidential election. My cousin and his wife, both registered Republicans, voted early- both voted for McCain, but with reluctance. They didn't think he was a good candidate, and seemed to be put off by "The Palin Factor". Neither had any real animosity towards Obama, but felt there was undue pressure, particularly on Southern whites, to vote for Obama or else be unfairly labeled as racists.
Mario then told us he was really unhappy with McCain, but wasn't going to vote for Obama.
His reasons were simple- Obama is black, and he is a Muslim.
Rather than get into an argument with a man who was a good host to us that evening, we let this lapse into racism slide. Mario, a man who came to this country looking for a better life, had bought into the poison of racism, and the erroneous assumption that you cannot be a "real" American and a Muslim.
Mario seemed like a good guy, a regular "Joe The Chef" (since we are a working class nation of "Joe The______ "s according to certain candidates on the campaign trail).
To try to correct him at this stage of the game would have been futile. Sadly, the hate mongers and those who seek to exploit divisions among us had gained another convert. Here was a man in front of us not unlike the woman at the McCain rally who told McCain that Barack Obama was an Arab.
Mario wasn't going to be parodied on Saturday Night Live, or see his image on You Tube. But he is indicative of a problem that a President Barack Obama will have- that thousands, perhaps millions, of American citizens will still distrust Obama because of the color of his skin. This is a prejudice that has been alive and well in some form or another on this continent for 500 years and counting.
But even more will still hang on to the erroneous belief that Obama is not a Protestant, but Muslim. There are those on the Far Right who's mission this political season was, if not to propagate that lie, was to make sure that the doubt of "who is the real Barack Obama?" would not go away.
The Agents of Fear did their job very effectively in one little corner of New Jersey.
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
In the Daily Beast Tina Brown has some keen observations regarding Sarah Palin, her SNL appearance, and Palin's resemblance to a character from an Oscar winning actresses' resume.
"The more Palin is blamed for John McCain’s demise the more I think she will outstrip them all. In fact, forget about Shakespeare. She reminds me of Nicole Kidman’s character Susanne Stone in Gus Van Sant’s classic 1995 comedy To Die For. Stone/Kidman, if you recall, is the relentlessly ambitious small town redhead who is as keen-witted as she is dumb, manically focused on getting to anchor her own show on TV. She is propelled toward her celebrity goal by such killer lines as “Gorbachev might have accomplished so much more if he had had that big purple thing taken off his forehead" and the Warholian insight “You aren't really anybody in America if you're not on TV.”.....Tina Brown
A good read, and a great new website, highly recommended.
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
She can sing...
And it seems that she got The Chipmunks out of that retirement burrow down at The Shore to help her out.
Check out the vid!
With information gathered from trends and tracking, FiveThirtyEight projects the following-
***Obama will win the electoral vote 345-193***
***Obama will win the popular vote 52%-48%***
***The Dems will gain seats in the Senate to go to 57 seats to 41 GOP(2 seats are independent), but will not gain a fillibuster proof majority of 60 seats.***
***The degree of certainty of these projects, according to their data, is 93.4%***
We'll know in a mere 13 days.
Thank you, God, for giving us this smart person....can we have a few more?
Its a must read!
Nixon invented the formula 40 years ago- when an election is in doubt, go back to the bag of tricks; make other guy look less American.
In my opinion, the ultimate insult is that Barack Obama is being wrongly labeled as a "socialist" by a woman who's biography could be titled I Married A Secessionist.
Monday, October 20, 2008
The usual suspects have chimed in regarding General Colin Powell's endorsement of Senator Obama for President of the United States. Michelle Malkin, Rush Limbaugh, and the usual Anakin Skywalker "if you are not with us you are against us" bunch of Sith Republicans have spoken. Gasbag Limbaugh has said, in his words that the endorsement was "totally about race". Malkin has said that the endorsement proves what she and others have known all along; that Powell was a fence sitter Republican.
My friends...this is just more proof to me, that there is an undercurrent present of Two Americas....and the Conservative Republican base will fight like hell to keep it that way.
One of the most profound and moving parts of General Powell's endorsement dealt with the question of Senator Obama and "is he or isn't he" a Muslim, and some Republican attempts to let the image perpetuate.
What he said touched me as a veteran, as a resident of New Jersey, and as an American.
...the correct answer is, he is not a Muslim, he's a Christian. He's always been a Christian. But the really right answer is, what if he is? Is there something wrong with being a Muslim in this country? The answer's no, that's not America. Is there something wrong with some seven-year-old Muslim-American kid believing that he or she could be president? Yet, I have heard senior members of my own party drop the suggestion, "He's a Muslim and he might be associated with terrorists." This is not the way we should be doing it in America.
I feel strongly about this particular point because of a picture I saw in a magazine. It was a photo essay about troops who are serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. And one picture at the tail end of this photo essay was of a mother in Arlington Cemetery, and she had her head on the headstone of her son's grave. And as the picture focused in, you could see the writing on the headstone. And it gave his awards--Purple Heart, Bronze Star--showed that he died in Iraq, gave his date of birth, date of death. He was 20 years old. And then, at the very top of the headstone, it didn't have a Christian cross, it didn't have the Star of David, it had the crescent and star of the Islamic faith. And his name was Kareem Rashad Sultan Khan, and he was an American. He was born in New Jersey. He was 14 years old at the time of 9/11, and he waited until he could go serve his country, and he gave his life...
Meet The Press Transcript, Sunday October 19, 2008
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Powell remains a friend of Senator John McCain, but is "troubled" by the rightward shift of the Republican Party, of the negative nature of the McCain campaign, of the use of polarizing tactics by Republican operatives, and McCain's selection of Sarah Palin as a running mate.
Powell said that selection of Obama would be trans formative event for the nation, and would be a choice that could unite a nation that is deeply divided.
OPINION- General Powell gave one of the most eloquent and precise reasons for selecting a candidate that this writer has ever heard, and in doing so he has forcefully rebuked the Republican Party's direction, a party which he has served in war and in peace. John McCain speaks of "country first", and then allows his party operatives to attack Barack Obama over the charge that he was in the same room with a onetime 1960's radical, or that he may be a Muslim that associates with terrorists, or that Obama is dangerous to America. The only thing McCain has succeeded in doing is to further divide this nation more than it already is. If Obama wins the election millions of Americans will believe that their president is a "Manchurian Candidate", the villain who will betray America. But if McCain pulls out the election in the eleventh hour, using the Big Smear of "Robo Calls" and the politics of fear, millions and the other side will never forgive him, and will never trust him again. His presidency will have a taint from Day One.
General Powell "gets it". His Republican Party, the party of free enterprise and individual freedom, expired with the end of the 20th Century. He, indeed, is one of those "left behind" by the shift the Far Right and the Neo-cons took his party.
It is General Colin Powell who is truly putting country first. Once again he has proven to be one of the greatest patriots our great nation has ever known.
Sadly, his endorsement of Obama has brought out the worst of some the conservative bloggers and commentators- Powell, like Chris Buckley and Kathleen Parker, is now a heretic is their eyes. One blogger referred to him as a no more than an opportunist; and Pat Buchanan, who I generally like and have grudging respect for, even went so far as to suggest to Chris Mathews that there was racial motivation in the endorsement.
It is ironic that those who proclaim "country first" have so little tolerance for those who dissent, and of those who's vision of a better America isn't the one they hold.
With luck-and God's help- maybe President Barack Obama will help us write a new chapter in our great American story.
Friday, October 17, 2008
More details forthcoming.
See video below.
The Washington Post today gave its endorsement for President of the United States to Democratic Senator Barack Obama.
Other endorsements for Obama include The Chicago Sun-Times, and the tradiionally Republican Los Angeles Times, and The Chicago Tribune.
Read the full editorial here.
Thursday, October 16, 2008
Joe The Plumber!
I couldn't stop myself.
This man has done more interviews in one day than Sarah Palin has done since her nomination!
This will be the last reference to this man I will make on this blog....which is about 24 times less than John McCain referenced him in 90 minutes on Wednesday night.
The question remains- can Barack Obama take the pivotal state of Ohio, or will attitudes like these help keep Ohio red?
Most memorable passage:
"That certainly was overdoing it. So much so that after 20 years close up reporting on the original I can't resist the temptation to paraphrase Lloyd Bentsen's comment when Dan Quayle unwisely compared himself to John F. Kennedy. 'I've interviewed Margaret Thatcher, Governor Palin and I can tell you that you are no Margaret Thatcher.'"
Read all about it here.
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
He didn't...but he did make substantive points, and he did forcefully distance himself from President George W. Bush.
Where McCain did fall down was when the Bill Ayres and Acorn issues were brought up. Obama explained his relationship to Ayres and to Acorn, and a flustered McCain seemed to turn into The Caine Mutiny's Captain Queeg, getting angry and in search of his steel ball bearings. Then he brought up his mantra of "Obama will raise your taxes".
On the subject of reproductive rights, McCain didn't endear himself to pro-choice moderates, and seemed to be out of the mainstream regarding Roe v Wade.
In short...it was McCain's best debate performance, but the night still belonged to Obama....Obama ducked and avoided any knockout, and wins on points.
That's the way I see it.
In the interview Sanchez hints that ideologically there were similarities between the Alaska Independence Party and other "patriot" groups. Sanchez did ask Neiwert if the AIP held an ideology "similar to the group that blew up the Murrah Building (in Oklahoma City in 1995)".
Neiwert clarifies his intentions in his interview...and suggests that though there is no connection to the AIP to any terroristic actions, that the AIP membership does indeed rub elbows with many in the Far Right's Patriot movement.
The reasons for concern for voters are enumerated step by step in Neiwert's response...check it out...and check out the video featuring the AIP's vice-chair Dexter Clark at the 2007 North American Secessionist Convention regarding infiltration of major political parties.
Its a good read....click HERE, and then ask....which candidate really associates with radicals?
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
Palin's ties to former Alaska Independence Party chairman Mark Chryson and John Birch Society activist Steve Stoll are detailed an extensive article in Salon, co-authored by Max Blumenthal and David Neiwert.
It makes one wonder....will this be an "October Surprise" from the Obama camp to seal the deal?
Its a must read....and if accurate it answers the question....which candidate truly did pal around with radicals?
Below, CNN's Rick Sanchez interviews David Neiwert.
1.Something...that is, someone....is very missed in this political season. Wish you were still with us, Tim Russert. I would love to get your take on the campaigns, the Palins, the financial crisis, and your beloved Buffalo Bills.
2.The New York Giants are human after all. Just ask the good citizens of Cleveland, Ohio. Have another round of Dortmonder at the dear old Winking Lizard.
3.Watching Rutgers Football this season is kind of like the movie Groundhog Day....its the same painful game every week. If Bill Murray tailgates near me on Saturday we're in big trouble.
4.Favorite new show on the tube this season....Life on Mars. Is Sam Tyler time traveling from 2008 to 1973, or is he in a coma, or is he in the afterlife? And how about Michael Imperioli with the shaggy doo and facial hair ( Adrianna would have never approved)?
5. Favorite returning show....Madmen. Some of the best writing TV has seen since the Sopranos. OK, it is a glorified soap opera...but its intriguing, and the characters always seem to zig when you think they are going to zag. And they do have the nuances of the era (early 1960's) nailed.
(6). No Yankees playing October baseball....no real interest in the post season from this guy.
(7) Three books to recommend....Stephen Mansfield's The Faith of Barack Obama, which gives a fair and unbiased view of Obama's life and religious upbring, his conversion to Christianity, and a look at the Reverend Jeremiah Wright, and his Afro-centrist views. Also, Amy Sullivan's The Party Faithful, which deals about how Democrats won, then lost, then began winning back Evangelicals and Roman Catholics. And Republican operative Vic Gold's fine book, Invasion of the Party Snatchers, which tells the tale of how Neo-Cons and the Religious Right gained control of the Republican Party and ran it into the ground.
(8) Midnight Madness begins Friday, and the March to March Madness begins....I love it!
(9) I was watching Recount on HBO this afternoon....and it really doesn't seem possible that eight years have passed since the 2000 election. Whatever happened to Katherine Harris? I guess she wasn't available for the Republican Vice Presidential spot.....and neither was Elizabeth Hasselbeck.
(10). Tomorrow, from Hofstra University, the last presidential debate....and John McCain needs to hit a grand slam to tie the game and force extra innings. The bad news for McCain; there are two out, nobody on, and its the bottom of the ninth.
Michael Palin isn't the funniest Palin on earth.
I wonder if Sarah Palin owns a dead parrot?
Or if she likes Spam?
Monday, October 13, 2008
From the Huffington Post.
Sunday, October 12, 2008
The piece comes across as one of the harshest I've ever read about McCain. If true, McCain deserves "Worst Person in the World, Emeritus" selection. Sure to come will be a repudiation of the story from the McCain-Palin campaign.
As in most cases like this, the real truth just lies somewhere between an article like this one, and the "official" biography.
Is he a patriot who believes in "country first", or one of the most deceptive opportunists in modern political history?
Read the article...and judge for yourself.
Saturday, October 11, 2008
Todd and Sarah, and TeeShirts from the Alaska Independence Party's Online Store. The shirt on the left refers to party founder Joe Vogeler. The shirt on the right shows a rattlesnake with its tail in Washington, DC swallowing Alaska.
That same day the Los Angeles Times ran the story of Governor Palin's, and her husband Todd's, involvement with the Alaska Independence Party.
The AIP was founded in 1978 by Joe Vogeler, described as a "secessionist gold miner". Vogeler has been quoted with the following; " I'm an Alaskan, not an American. I've got no use for America or her damned institutions."
The original goal of the AIP was succession from the United States. Today they are aiming for an Alaskan plebiscite to determine if Alaska should remain a state, revert to territorial status, become a Commonwealth of the United States, or become an independent nation. In the past some members have even explored the possibility of joining Canada's Northwest Territories and the Yukon to form an independent western Canadian state.
It has been verified that Todd Palin, the governor's husband, was indeed a member of the AIP from 1995 to 2002. He is no longer a member and he has been listed as "undeclared" since 2002. The Los Angeles Times reported on September 2nd that both Palins attended the AIP convention in Wasila in 1994. Lynnette Clark, AIP Party Chairman, was a source for information that Sarah Palin, too, was a member of the party. Clark later retracted the claim, saying she was mistaken.
Sarah Palin has shown support for the AIP in the past, and addressed them in a You Tube video.
Today, there are 13,681 members of the Alaska Independence Party. Alaska currently has 479,721 registered voters.
Friday, October 10, 2008
I guess since we're in that season of labeling people because of their political beliefs, I'll just come clean.....
"I am an admirer of (Groucho) Marx and (John) Lennon!"
Read this blog if you dare!
Thursday, October 9, 2008
Then one month before the election, your opponent hits you- and your supporters- with this "October Surprise"....
Fifteen years ago, while attending State University, you took American History 101 and 102, taught by Professor Eldridge Rubin. Forty years ago, in the spring of '68, Rubin burned an American flag on the steps of Old Ivy College, led a student takeover of the dean's office, and led a demonstration resulting in injuries to several police officers, and destroyed hundreds of thousands of dollars in property. Rubin went underground, and spent years advocating the violent takeover of the United States government. After years on the lam, Rubin turned himself into authorities, was sentenced to two years in prison, and upon his release became non-violent community activist. Years (and a master's degree) later, Rubin became a professor at State U., as well as a noted lecturer and educator. You knew Rubin, you liked him, you spent hours discussing topics varying from political action to movies and baseball with him after class.
Your rival for the city council seat sends out a press release that fingers you for "palling around" with a radical terrorist. The release never mentions that Rubin's activities happened years before you knew him, that there were at least 30 others in the class with you.
It becomes a situation where your judgement, integrity, even your patriotism, comes into question- all because of the actions of an acquaintance many years before you had met him.
This scenario sounds a little like an updating of Arthur Miller's
The Crucible- the difference being instead of the Salem witch trials (a metaphor for the 1950's Joe McCarthy "find the commie" hearings) we have the strategy of using the sins of an acquaintance to damn an individual for political gain, no matter how tenuous or casual the relationship might have been.
If this sounds unfair- and unAmerican- it is.
The connection between Barack Obama and Bill Ayers has been a favorite topic of right wing media gasbags like Hannity and Limbaugh, and has now been given the green light as fair game for discussion by John McCain and Sarah Palin. The Ayres connection has been called the Willie Horton of Barack Obama's campaign.
I shouldn't be shocked by this demonization- its a tried and true Republican tactic. It worked against Michael Dukakis, it plagued Bill Clinton during his presidency, it reduced Al Gore to a being a wimpy tree hugger, and, of course, it "swift boated" John Kerry. Make 'em look less American...more dangerous...and, God forbid, more liberal.
The tactic this time around, in trying to connect the dots between Ayers and Obama, and having surrogates repeat Obama's middle name (Hussein), and having Sarah (aka "Carribou Barbie") Palin play the role of Joe McCarthy's lost daughter, a designated attack dog.This strategy is sad, desperate, pathetic, and dangerous, not to mention it ducks the real pressing issue- an economy that is in the tank. Isolated cries at the McCain-Palin rallies have cried "traitor" and "kill him" at the mention of Obama's name. The crowds seem angry, and would rather vent than demand answers to the nation's economic down turn. They demand a villain, and McCain and Palin seem eager to deliver.
McCain and Palin are losing on the issues. And as one GOP handler said, they must get away from the nosediving economy, or the election is over. They have to get into the dumpster and get things to throw, hopefully finding something that will stick....because, sadly, it might be all they have left.
I respect John McCain for the brave patriot and public servant he is. I served during the Vietnam War, like McCain. Unlike McCain, I was assigned stateside, and skied in Utah and saw Deep Purple in Salt Lake City while McCain spent years being brutalized in the Hanoi Hilton.
In a sense, I love the guy, for that could as well been me in that Vietnamese prison.
And that is why his guilt by association tactics against Obama saddens me so much. I thought he, McCain, was a better man.
Sadly, the John McCain of an earlier time has left us. This new version appears to be a bitter and wounded man who, to paraphrase Joseph Welch during the Army-McCarthy hearings, has seemed to have lost a sense of decency, and lost his sense of shame.
This John McCain brought in some of the same operatives who attacked him in the South Carolina primary in 2000, claiming that his dark skinned adopted daughter was actually his out of wedlock half black daughter. The same guys raked McCain's friend, John Kerry, over the coals in 2004, questioning Kerry's war record. So much for solidarity among war vets.
Senator McCain, please have the fortitude to make these allegations to Senator Obama's face.
Or go back to your glass house....but be sure to stand back a few feet.
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
The Flyers play their home games in an arena that has naming rights owned by one of the nation's most troubled financial institution; the Wachovia Center.
Read the story here.
I knew there was a reason I never liked hockey.
Gibbs point was that guilt by association can turn an accusor to the accused very easily. Gibbs throws out a charge that Hannity might be an anti-Semite, because he, Hannity, had an anti-semitic guest.
See the vid!
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
Senators Obama and McCain's debate could be broken down into three segments; the first about the ailing economy, a second regarding health care, Social Security, and Medicare, and the third about foreign policy.
On the economy Senator McCain did throw out a surprise about a program empowering the Treasury Secretary to buy out bad mortgages- price tag, roughly $300 billion.
That sounds like "big government" to me.....and how do you pay for it?
The bottom line- I call that segment a draw, while Obama hit a home run with the vignette about his mother's tragic death from cancer at age 53, and the battles she had with insurance companies in the health care segment.
Obama stood toe to toe with McCain on foreign policy, and frankly appeared more authoritative than McCain.
The town hall format was thought to benefit McCain, but actually the format did expose McCain's physical awkwardness, the result of age and the years of abuse he suffered in the Vietnam War.
Frankly, Obama looked like a tall handsome young statesman, and to be candid, McCain looked like an aging pol....the body language was stark in its contrast.
These are just some initial impressions..........more later.
Monday, October 6, 2008
It seems that people who live in glass houses shouldn't....well, you know the rest.
Read the story of Gretchen Peters and her unique way of setting the record straight. Ms Peters believes the GOP is missing the point of the song in using it to introduce Sarah Palin to crowds.
So far, Ann and Nancy Wilson of Heart have objected to the McCain-Palin campaign's use of their song Barracuda, and Van Halen has said "no" to the continued use of Right Now by the GOP.
Yeah, yeah...its all circumstantial stuff....she married a man who has the same last name as an actor/comedian who once played a cross dressing lumberjack in the 1960's.
I know...its all guilt by association.
How unfair of me....
But come to think of it....the "other" Mr. Palin also appeared in sketches about The Spanish Inquisition, dead parrots, and SPAM.
Monty Python's Flying Circus - The Lumberjack Song - The most popular videos are here
It had to happen.
Sarah "Spiro Agnew in Pumps" Palin was given her marching orders- attack Barack Obama's character.
Its the last arrow the McCain campaign has left in their quiver.
And the Obama campaign responded, with a short documentary about John McCain's role in the Keating Five scandal of the late 1980's- early 1990's. The other senators involved were all Democrats who did not run for re-election.
Below is the preview, with a link to the full length version.
Sunday, October 5, 2008
From my Merriam-Webster's Thesaurus- terroristic- adj-characterized by or practicing terror as a means of coercion
rel-coercive, brutal, strong-arm, cruel, merciless, immoral,improper, unsanctioned.
Governor Sarah Palin (whom I might suggest probably thought The Weathermen was a Seattle grunge band until being told by Republican operatives that they were a 1960's group of political radicals), told a Colorado gathering that Barack Obama "is palling around with terrorists who would target their own country".
She, of course, is referring to Obama's casual relationship with Bill Ayers, one of the founders of The Weathermen. The extent of the relationship between Ayres, now a college professor, and Obama, is tenuous at best. The featured post below this entry has more details courtesy of The Guardian, the distinguished newspaper from the United Kingdom.
In my opinion, it is sad and pathetic that the McCain campaign is so desperate that it has to resort to "Rovian" smear tactics. And it is even sadder that McCain, a man who showed such courage and fortitude in his military service shows so little of it in appointing Sarah Palin as his surrogate attack dog.
Guilt by association....an effective strategy once employed by the Spanish Inquisition....and by the superstitious rabble in 1690's Salem, Massachusetts...and during the Red Scare of the 1920's....and of course, by Senator "Tail Gunner Joe" McCarthy in the 1950's.
I suppose at an upcoming rally Governor Palin will hold a paper high in the air and yell, "I have a list of known terrorists in the DNC".
To borrow the line the great Joseph Welch during the McCarthy hearings....."Governor Palin and Senator McCain- have you no sense of decency? Have you no sense of shame?"
Thursday, October 2, 2008
Sarah Palin is not the embarrassment she was made out to be.
No, she didn't implode, and she held her own on the same stage with Senator Joe Biden. And in that sense, she does come out a winner.
She stuck to the talking points, and stuck it to the Obama- Biden ticket on every occasion. Pundit Howard Fineman said that she was like a wolverine biting on to a guy's pants leg.
Her biggest accomplishment of the night was this- she stopped the bleeding. She needed to stem the tide of criticism of her mind boggling interviews this past week with Katie Couric, as well as the hits she took from conservative columnists George Will, Charles Krauthammer, and Kathleen Parker.
Palin followed the rule of adhered to by most politicians- she answered the questions she wanted to answer instead of the ones she was asked. And she did it fairly well, although it was obvious to even the most dispassionate observer.
Biden was Biden- talky but charming, and, in my opinion, he won it on points.
What have I learned from this?
Sarah Palin is not the Tina Fey caricature....
And if, God forbid, the next President of the United States were to die in office I would feel much safer- still- with Joe Biden next in line of succession.
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
In her October 1st column Ms. Parker wrote that she was called an "traitor and an idiot", and that her mother should have aborted her and left her in a dumpster. An unnamed conservative organization also cancelled a speech Ms Parker was scheduled to give.
"Readers have every right to reject my opinion. But when we decide that a person is a traitor and should die for having an opinion different from one's own, we cross into territory that puts all freedoms at risk. (I hear you, Dixie Chicks.)"
Ms. Parker referred to the lockstep partisanship of Congress as almost Stalinist. I say to those who threaten death to those of other opinions; isn't that the same as the mullahs who issue fatahs to those who sin against Islam, who defy orthodoxy and therefore must die?
Thank you Kathleen Parker for having the courage to speak out.
And to change your opinion.
Enough of bloodsport politics, fears of a Wall Street collapse, tears because there's no October baseball in New York, and loathing and gnashing of teeth....not to mention the wet newspaper that was sitting in the gutter in the driveway this morning.
Don't' worry....be happy!
Well.... try dammit!
It fess up time....some of the most entertaining stuff you'll ever see on TV comes from the shopping channels. Its live, and spontaneous, and often the unexpected, the unpredictable, and even the just plain stupid happens.
During the darkest days of the war in Iraq the news was often so disheartening you needed to turn it off before you went out the door in the morning. A light alternative to all of the bad news was Sunrise on HSN. In the middle part of this decade the show was hosted by Lynn Murphy and John Cremeans
The show, in my eyes, was a comedy show disguised as a home shopping show. The chemistry between Lynn and John was real, never forced, and seemed more in tune with a morning talk show.
Lately John has collected various shows from that era, plus glimpses of other shows that he's done through the years on the JCremeans Channel on YouTube. Some funny stuff. Above, some video highlights of his time partnered with Lynn.
While watching the video I had this thought.....in this Presidential election we have a grey haired guy named John running for president, with a perky, spunky and attractive woman his selection as his vice president.
Well....why not run John and Lynn if the current duo doesn't work out?
John's from the Midwest and rides a Harley, for God's sake! And, as shown on the video, this cat's got some dance moves. He could announce his campaign on DANCING WITH THE STARS. DWTS has a built in audience, even though most of whom have no idea that there is a presidential election or have only voted for that show or AMERICAN IDOL.
Think about it..it would be groundbreaking!
As for Lynn....she's so perky she makes Sarah Palin look like Morticia Adams. And growing up in Philly she could probably see New Jersey (on a clear day). If she ever went to the Jersey shore as a kid, she could claim that as maritime experience.
They both look good on camera....and can read cue cards...and listen to a director in their earpiece...and talk, think, and even chew gum at the same time.
They probably could even name a couple of magazines that they read....and just might be able to name a couple of Supreme Court decisions if they were pressed by little pests like Katie Couric!
They don't need no stinkin' executive experience.
Because the clock is ticking...and they know how to sell Today's Special to America.
And that my friends, ain't so bad.....is it?