Thursday, September 25, 2008

Road trip

We will be traveling the rest of the week, blogging will be light.

Maybe non-existent.

In fact, we're heading to Washington D.C. today.

But not at the behest of John McCain.

As far as you know.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

More than just a slogan

John McCain is suspending his campaign to return to Washington to deal with the financial crisis:

America this week faces an historic crisis in our financial system. We must pass legislation to address this crisis. If we do not, credit will dry up, with devastating consequences for our economy. People will no longer be able to buy homes and their life savings will be at stake. Businesses will not have enough money to pay their employees. If we do not act, ever corner of our country will be impacted. We cannot allow this to happen.

Last Friday, I laid out my proposal and I have since discussed my priorities and concerns with the bill the Administration has put forward. Senator Obama has expressed his priorities and concerns. This morning, I met with a group of economic advisers to talk about the proposal on the table and the steps that we should take going forward. I have also spoken with members of Congress to hear their perspective.

It has become clear that no consensus has developed to support the Administration’s proposal. I do not believe that the plan on the table will pass as it currently stands, and we are running out of time.

Tomorrow morning, I will suspend my campaign and return to Washington after speaking at the Clinton Global Initiative. I have spoken to Senator Obama and informed him of my decision and have asked him to join me.

Why? Well, for all the reasons of political advantage, of course.

But that's not all. As ABC reported this morning, Congress seems paralyzed, waiting for McCain to act:

ABC News' George Stephanopoulos reports: If Republican presidential candidate Sen. John McCain doesn't vote for the Bush administration's $700 billion economic bailout plan, some Republican and Democratic congressional leaders tell ABC News the plan won't pass.

"If McCain doesn't come out for this, it's over," a Top House Republican tells ABC News.

A Democratic leadership source says that White House Chief of Staff Josh Bolten has been told that Democratic votes will not be there if McCain votes no -- that there is no deal if McCain doesn't go along.

And here in video:

Charlie Gibson: "So this really rests on McCain's shoulders?"

George Stephanopoulous: "And it's not a free vote for him Charlie...if he goes no, this package will likely fail and he will bear the consequence for that."

So in suspending his campaign, McCain rises to the challenge, and rides in to the rescue.

But now Harry Reid isn't so sure:

A Democrat tells ABC News that in a phone call late this afternoon, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., told Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., that it would NOT be helpful for him to come back to Washington, DC, to work on the Wall Street bailout bill.

McCain this afternoon suspended his campaign and said he would skip the first presidential debate in order to return to Capitol Hill to work on the log jammed Bush administration legislation, which as of Wednesday afternoon was in peril. ...

McCain had phoned Reid to ask about the prospects of him, Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., and others to sit down and work together on hammering out a bipartisan proposal.

"Sorry," Reid said to him, a Democrat close to Reid says.

Apparently McCain's campaign slogan of "Country First" is more than just a slogan, while Democrats like Reid have no idea how to operate outside of slogans, none of which include the idea of putting country first.

And yes, we'll probably hear, "He'd rather lose and election to save the economy, than win an election and lose the economy" more than a few times in the coming days and weeks.

As a slogan? Sure, no doubt.

But does McCain mean it outside of just a slogan? We think so.

Congress wants to put the weight of the world on his shoulders to lessen their collective burden in this crisis, and McCain is saying in response:

I’ve been an imperfect servant of my country for many years. But I have been her servant first, last and always. ...

I’m not running for president because I think I’m blessed with such personal greatness that history has anointed me to save our country in its hour of need. My country saved me. My country saved me, and I cannot forget it. And I will fight for her for as long as I draw breath, so help me God.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Biden and pit bulls, part five

Danger is his middle name:

If you want to know where Al Qaeda lives, you want to know where Bin Laden is, come back to Afghanistan with me," Biden said. "Come back to the area where my helicopter was forced down, with a three-star general and three senators at 10,500 feet in the middle of those mountains. I can tell you where they are..."

He was forced down by global warming a snow storm.

OK, no rest for the weary!

You know what they say the difference is between a pit bull and Joe Biden?

One yanks on his chain when you take him for a walk.

And the other yanks your chain thinking you won't notice ... or won't care because, "heh, that's our Joe".

Previously...

One has a diet consisting of dog food.

And the other dines consistently on his size 12 loafers.

...

One is by nature a creature that needs to be kept on a very tight and short leash.

And the other licks its own privates.

...

One is a relentless attack dog who can be trained to take out your enemies.

And the other is a six term Senator who can be counted on to bite the hand that feeds him.

...

You need a muzzle to shut one of them up.

And the other you need to let outside to go poop.

Biden and pit bulls, part four

Biden, on what makes a leader:

"Part of what being a leader does is to instill confidence is to demonstrate what he or she knows what they are talking about and to communicating to people ... this is how we can fix this," Biden said. "When the stock market crashed, Franklin Roosevelt got on the television and didn't just talk about the princes of greed. He said, 'look, here's what happened.'"

Now we would hate to say that Biden doesn't act the part of a leader and instills no confidence.

But he leaves us no choice.

Roosevelt, the stock market crash and televisions? Captain Ed helps demonstrate that Biden does not know what he is talking about.

And away we go...

You know what they say the difference is between a pit bull and Joe Biden?

One has a diet consisting of dog food.

And the other dines consistently on his size 12 loafers.

Previously…

One is by nature a creature that needs to be kept on a very tight and short leash.

And the other licks its own privates.

...

One is a relentless attack dog who can be trained to take out your enemies.

And the other is a six term Senator who can be counted on to bite the hand that feeds him.

...

You need a muzzle to shut one of them up.

And the other you need to let outside to go poop.


Biden is no pit bull, part three

Here’s Biden’s latest:

Biden was asked by a voter: "Wind and solar are flourishing here in Ohio, so why are you supporting clean coal?"

Biden replied: "We're not supporting 'clean coal.' Guess what. China's building two every week. Two dirty coal plants. And it's polluting the United States. It's causing people to die. ... China is burning three hundred years of bad coal unless we figure out how to clean their coal up. Because it's going to ruin your lungs and there's nothing we can do about it. No coal plants here in America. Build them, if they're going to build them over there make 'em clean because they're killing you."

Of course, that’s not exactly on message in terms of Obama's clean coal position. Of course. Of course. It's Biden afterall.

OK, so this list will undoubtedly grow by leaps and bounds should Biden continue to be allowed to access to a microphone … so we are going to keep a running list.

You know what they say the difference is between a pit bull and Joe Biden?

One is by nature a creature that needs to be kept on a very tight and short leash.

And the other licks its own privates.

Previously…

One is a relentless attack dog who can be trained to take out your enemies.

And the other is a six term Senator who can be counted on to bite the hand that feeds him.

You need a muzzle to shut one of them up.

And the other you need to let outside to go poop.

Fall in line, Joe

Biden with Katie Couric:

Asked about the negative tone of the campaign, and this ad in particular, during an interview broadcast Monday by the "CBS Evening News," Obama's running mate, Sen. Joe Biden, said he disapproved of it.

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

Asked why it was done, he said: "I didn't know we did it and if I had anything to do with it, we'd have never done it."

A momentary lapse by Biden, of course. Biden was quickly reminded that he doesn’t have to fall in love with Team Obama ads, he just has to fall in line:

[I]n the statement issued by the Obama campaign, Biden said he had never seen the ad and only read press reports of it.

"Having now reviewed the ad, it is even more clear to me that given the disgraceful tenor of Senator McCain's ads and their persistent falsehoods, his campaign is in no position to criticize," Biden said in the statement.

We paraphrased Sarah Palin’s pit bull joke last week in the football fan post. We tried to be generous and speak generally of politicians, rather than singling out Joe Biden.

But we simply cannot cover for him any longer. So…

You know what they say the difference is between a pit bull and Joe Biden?

You need a muzzle to shut one of them up.

And the other you need to let outside to go poop.

We could probably also add another line of thought…

One is a relentless attack dog who can be trained to take out your enemies.

And the other is a six term Senator who can be counted on to bite the hand that feeds him.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Moving toward a post-racial view of the election?

From Ed Lasky at American Thinker, we have some really amazing breaking news from the campaign:

"Obama's name and his African heritage are obstacles to the party's chances of capturing the White House, party activists are finding," Dave Davies reports in the Philadelphia Daily News. "I'm hearing a lot of people saying, 'He's too young, he's too inexperienced,' " said Philadelphia AFL-CIO President Pat Eiding. "What they're really saying is, 'He's black.'

Taking a look back at our depiction of Team Obama's Magic Quadrant Breakdown of Election 2008, we are reminded that Palin and Obama share the same lower left quadrant on the measures of age and experience. Our point was that Team Obama uses different descriptors of that quadrant...for Obama it is “Untainted and Vigorous Agent of Change and Deliverer of Hope”. For Palin, it is “Lightweight Neophyte”.

But now, if young and inexperienced really means black...well...

You know what it means when this is Team Obama’s first reaction to Sarah Palin’s selection:

Today, John McCain put the former mayor of a town of 9,000 with zero foreign policy experience a heartbeat away from the presidency.

What Team Obama Is Really Saying Is, ‘Sarah Palin Is Black’.

Not only that, but 'Palin' is a funny name, and she certainly doesn’t look like the other Presidents on the dollar bills.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Surrogates gone wild

Ruth Marcus in the Washington Post takes up the cause of ending the Surrogate Wars:

Both candidates should declare a surrogate cease-fire. Surrogates are the loose nukes of political campaigns, except more likely to detonate. To be precise, more likely to detonate themselves. Campaigns are the collateral damage. The toxic fallout wafts over cable shows for days. Surrogates create an atmosphere of Mutually Assured Embarrassment -- without the deterrent effect.

Surrogates have always played a campaign role, but the 24/7 news cycle of cable TV amplified by the Internet has made them more ubiquitous, and therefore more dangerous, than ever. How many times during this race have candidates’ messages been forced off-track by a surrogate gone astray? As with weaponry, the question becomes: are they worth the risk? Can a rational campaign safely bet that its surrogates are more likely to hit the target than the other sides’?

The 2008 Surrogate Wars suggest not. ...

Yes, I hear you saying, pitifully na├»ve. Given a choice between having a serious discussion about state regulation of insurance and Carly casually mentioning Viagra, we in the media are going to go for the Viagra every time. So out with the appeals to elevated discourse; in with the argument for enlightened self-interest. Campaign managers: You get antsy about outside groups weighing in on their side because it interferes with your message. Well, your surrogates are doing the same. Force cable to focus on what your candidate is saying (not that he’s always on message) or dredge up another “strategist” no one’s ever heard of. Ditch the surrogates.

We took a look at surrogate follies back in August (”Speak for yourself”), agreeing with a Huffington Post writer that the surrogate battles are out of control.

And we agree with Marcus today.

Our suggestion back in August, or really our lament, was that Town Halls between both candidates could help reduce the 24/7 media’s reliance on surrogates to fill airtime, allowing more direct coverage of the candidates directly engaging one another.

But of course, for every town hall or debate, the 24/7 media coverage would rely on surrogates to battle it out over who can spin their candidate’s performance as being superior. So maybe town halls wouldn’t solve the problem.

And really, even if formal campaign surrogates were to be banished, we would still be left with the overwhelming presence of Obama’s informal network of surrogates, the media themselves.

So what to do?

Joint town halls are still the answer. As is any other venue in which Obama can be presented with an opportunity to speak without a teleprompter.

Friday, September 19, 2008

"Pray for our military men and women"

Bill Clinton, FDR, John F. Kennedy, Abraham Lincoln *AND* Sarah Palin

vs.

Charlie "Are we fighting a holy war?" Gibson


(h/t JPod, who h/t's Ace, who h/t's Instapundit)

There's a flag on the play

Obama fumbled the ball here:

Barack Obama has put the Pennsylvania Republican delegates here in stitches over getting the name of the Penn State University mascot wrong today.

Not what you want to be doing in a state where the GOP is hammering you hard for being out of touch.

To most sports fans, they're the Nittany Lions.

Obama, during a stop in Pennsylvania today, called them the "Nitally lions" as he called on someone during a question-and-answer session.

But no matter, football fans would still rather catch a game with Obama than McCain:

WASHINGTON - People would rather watch a football game with Barack Obama than with John McCain — but by barely the length of a football.

Obama was the pick over McCain by a narrow 50 percent to 47 percent, according to an Associated Press-Yahoo News poll released Friday that generally mirrored each presidential candidate's strengths and weaknesses with voters.

This is good news for Obama. No doubt. It is very similar to the “who do you want to have a beer with” criteria that we have pointed out a number of times. Any time you can connect with voters on this kind of personal level (though a sleepover is a little too personal), you’re doing good.

Not being an Obama fan, we find this disturbing from an election standpoint.

But honestly they really had to come up with a new category because the beer comparison is unfair in this election. Cindy McCain owns a beer distributorship. Seriously, who wouldn’t want to have a beer with the candidate whose wife could hook you up with free beer for life?

Then again, and maybe this is just us, but what football fan wouldn’t want to catch a game with the candidate whose wife could hook you up with free beer for life?

Oh, right. Upon further review, “football fans” may be a stretch:

"With McCain, I have such an age difference," said Smith of the Arizona senator, who is 72. But with Obama, 47, he said, "If things went well with the conversation, the football game would be forgotten. There'd be a lot of back and forth."

Sounds like we’re really talking about non-football watching ninnies who wouldn’t know a Nitally from a Nittany who would be willing to use football as an excuse to cozy up to the political celebrity. And of course the feeling is mutual … Obama is a politician who would use football to cozy up to voters. Not that that is unique to Obama. In fact...

THE REAL FOOTBALL FAN IN THE RACE: Like any big football fan, Joe Biden can’t make up his mind who his favorite team is. Right? Real football fans are big fans of lots of teams? (h/t Hugh Hewitt)

Although Biden said he was a Steelers fan in a meeting with the team's coach Mike Tomlin on August 29, he later said in a September 8 visit to a Green Bay bar outside of Lambeau Field that he'd been a Packers fan since grade school.

Today he added three more favorites to the list -- the Eagles, the Colts and the Giants.

As he looked at the jersey of former Philadelphia Eagle Reggie White, Horrigan said he had heard Biden was an Eagles fan.

Biden said yes, adding, "I used to be a Colts fan before they moved to Baltimore."

The loquacious Blue Hen said he stayed up late to watch the Monday night football game between the Eagles and the Dallas Cowboys.

"My wife is a die-hard Eagles fan, so we watch every Eagles game," Biden said. "Matter of fact, I was really tired Tuesday morning."...

But Biden then whispered, "I'm not allowed to say this, but I also like the Giants."

You know what they say the difference is between a pit bull and a political candidate claiming to be a football fan?

You need a muzzle to shut one of them up.

And the other you need to let outside to go poop.

Team Obama's Magic Quadrants

How does Team Obama see the race?

McCain is old and out of touch (never mind that Biden has been in the Senate longer than McCain).

Palin is inexperienced and not ready (never mind that Obama has zero executive experience and less than two years more as Senator than Palin as governor).

Or to put it in pictures, Team Obama's Magic Quadrant Breakdown of Election 2008:








Thursday, September 18, 2008

Just like me

John McCain’s selection of Sarah Palin to be his vice presidential running mate has created a new dynamic in this year’s presidential election. For months, pundits and experts (not always the same thing) have been telling us that the election came down to a referendum on Barack Obama. Because of the fatigue felt toward President Bush in the waning days of his administration, voters are ready enough for change to vote for just about any Democrat – all Obama has to do was pass some minimal bar of acceptability to prove he would be capable at the helm.

It would be McCain’s job, not so much to prove himself capable, for few people would deny that his experience and history have prepared him for such a role, but to work to convince voters that Barack Obama was not ready and not right for this nation, especially at this time.

While that dynamic still exists – of course Obama will not be elected president if he does not pass the capability test – the importance of it is now being challenged due to the excitement surrounding Sarah Palin’s inclusion on the GOP ticket. Sarah Palin is the new rock star, the hot celebrity, the hip and happening center of gravity now in the campaign.

The excitement and deep emotions cut both ways, of course. As excited as Republicans and conservatives are, Democrats and liberals are shaken and dismayed. For every campaign stop with thousands of screaming and adoring supporters chanting “Sa-rah Sa-rah”, there are elite media personalities and Democratic operatives and even Obama campaign representatives willing to drag Sarah Palin through the gutter of rumors and smears and whispers and lies. As is true almost any time cable news becomes must-see-TV, the results are largely cringe-inducing.

This new stage in the campaign is all about who Sarah Palin is, what she represents, and how people react to someone so completely unlike the politicians we expect to run on a national ticket in an election for the highest office in the country.

Sarah Palin has never been exposed to the national media, and perhaps more importantly the national media has never been exposed to Sarah Palin or anyone like her as a nominee in a presidential campaign. Palin doesn’t run in the elite media cocktail circuit and shows no interest in doing so. Palin took direct aim at the media in her acceptance speech when she said,

I've learned quickly these last few days that, if you're not a member in good standing of the Washington elite, then some in the media consider a candidate unqualified for that reason alone.

But -- now, here's a little newsflash. Here's a little newsflash for those reporters and commentators: I'm not going to Washington to seek their good opinion. I'm going to Washington to serve the people of this great country.

Sarah Palin creates an antipathy in the elite media. She is ambitious, but to get things done rather than to be well-known or to be well-liked. And while the elite media sees themselves as the gatekeepers of information to be disseminated to the public, in Palin they are confronted with someone who is willing and so far able to speak to the public directly with or without them.

Sarah Palin has come under intense criticism for her resume from all corners of the Democratic Party establishment. She was the mayor of a small town, she attended five colleges none of them elite private institutions, and she doesn’t even have a graduate level degree.

Sarah Palin is a working mom, mother of five, happily married to her high school sweetheart. Hers is a story of the every day, working class woman who has succeeded in everything she has done, and who has been rewarded with advancement after achieving her goals through determination and hard work. And Palin’s record as a public official is filled with accomplishment, bi-partisan success and even reform against the interests of her own party.

The Democratic Party establishment is geared toward battling old, rich men who either come from well-connected families or who have long connections to those families and circles. Democrats are well-prepared to take on the likes of a John McCain, Mitt Romney, or George Bush, and have geared their operations for such opponents, including developing a well-defined message on how to defeat such politicians.

Without the old playbook to go by, Democrats find themselves reduced to a Hillary Clintonesque kitchen sink strategy against Palin. Throw anything and everything against her. But this undisciplined approach has given them over to a highly emotional and in many cases utterly repulsive response that reeks of sexism and elitism. It has produced spasms of vile and hateful words, whose purpose is not so much to defeat a political rival, but to destroy a specific person.

But for Republicans and for independent voters outside of the deeply blue enclaves or outside of the mindset of the deeply blue partisan, Sarah Palin doesn’t create such excitement because she is the answer to the “who do you want to have a beer with” question. She doesn’t stir deep emotions in voters because she is the one we have waited for who can understand our problems and feel our pain from a distance. Because no matter how much those things are attempts to make a politician someone we can relate to, and who we think can relate to us – it still keeps them at arms’ length and separate.

Sarah Palin is not a person educated in the halls of Ivy League universities. She is not from a long line of political stock. She did not inherit the legacy of a powerful family. She was not mentored by politically connected professionals to be groomed for high government positions. She is not a politician who happens to be a mother and a wife – she is a mother and a wife who has set out through hard work and determination to ascend the political ladder to the position of governor and now as the vice presidential nominee in the Republican Party.

Sarah Palin doesn’t own seven houses, and she doesn’t take her kids to school using a limousine. Her husband is a member of the local union, and her community organizing experience is that of PTA mom. Even the things that would make her exotic, like being a former beauty queen, reflect more popular culture than high society. And even though very few people can relate to the experience of killing a moose, the idea of a hunter and outdoorsman paint a picture of someone well grounded in the type of middle-American values most people can identify with. And while all of that provides the basis for the vituperation among the elite media and the Democratic Party establishment, it endears here to most everyone else in a way not usually seen in a politician.

Sarah Palin is the politician who voters look at and say, “she is just like me”.

And therein lies the new dynamic of the race for the next six weeks. Make no mistake, John McCain and Barack Obama are the presidential nominees. Behind the curtain of the voting booth, voters’ minds will focus on the choice between those two men.

But now, with Sarah Palin having taken center stage in the election, as voters we will be forced to ask ourselves new questions leading up to the point of pulling that lever (or fingering the touch screen or punching chads, but I digress). Should the pinnacle of government be reserved only for the elite, highly-educated and well-connected and single-minded career politicians? Are such people better positioned and experienced to make the decisions of how the government should be run, to the exclusion of those like Sarah Palin, those who are “just like me”?

Answers to these questions may well determine the outcome in this year’s presidential election.

in Him there is no flaw

Remember this moment from the debates in the Democratic primaries?

Obama poked fun at John Edwards and Hillary Clinton for their response to the “what is your weakness” question at the MSNBC debate. Obama said that he answered the question as an “ordinary person.”

"Folks, they don't tell you what they mean!" exclaimed Obama.

“I thought that they meant 'what’s your biggest weakness?!' So I said 'well you know I don’t handle paper that well, you know, my desk is a mess, I need somebody to help me file and stuff all the time.'”

“So the other two they say well my biggest weakness is 'I'm just too passionate about helping poor people.' I am just too impatient to bring about change in America.'”

Obama joked, “If I had gone last I would have known what the game was. I could have said 'well you know I like to help old ladies across the street. Sometimes they don’t want to be helped. It’s terrible.'”

Poor Obama got caught giving an honest answer instead of playing the game.

It seems Obama learned his lesson – don’t admit weakness! – giving this flawless answer in response to a question from Katie Couric:

Katie Couric: What one personal flaw do you think might hinder your ability to be president?

Sen. Barack Obama: I don't think ... there's a flaw that would hinder my ability ... to function as president. I think that all of us have things we need to improve.

Well, ok, the title of our post may be unfair. He didn’t claim he was without flaw. He admitted there was room for improvement.

Which further proves he’s learning to play the game.

Because no matter what he really and truly thinks, he shouldn’t admit he really believes himself completely flawless and perfect, without blemish or defect.

(h/t Jennifer Rubin)

Something they have in common

They seem so different. Male/female; black/white; liberal/conservative; big city/out in the boonies; Ivy League educated/small non-prestigous colleges (five of them for her undergraduate degree!).

Apart from both breaking new ground in a presidential election (first African-American presidential nominee/first female nominee on a Republican ticket), is there anything they have in common?

Maybe so...this is from a Field and Stream interview with Barack Obama:

LICATA: Do you have a favourite piece of public land?

SENATOR OBAMA: One of my best memories as a child was the first time I went to Yellowstone. You know, I was 11 years old, and I went with my grandmother and my mom and my sister, and we spent almost a week. And just driving along a road, and then suddenly coming across just a herd of elk wandering through, or seeing a moose peering out of the woods, out of the marshes: It was magic.


See...Sarah Palin loves moose too!

Well, shot, processed, and served in a bowl of stew, that is. But it's something.

Oh and yeah, mmmmm, moose.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Leave Barack alone - he needs it

Don’t fault him for trying, because he’s really been trying…

According to several Democrat political consultants presumptive Democrat presidential nominee Barack Obama spent part of his Hawaiian vacation working on weaning himself from a heavy dependence on teleprompters. Even in what are staged as "town hall" events for Obama, remarks are scripted or formatted into bullet points that scroll on teleprompter screens. Obama has had several embarrassing events where the teleprompter either malfunctioned or the screens were not fully visible.

"He just locks down and can't get the words out," says one political consultant. "For such a fine speaker, it's really quite remarkable that he's had issues."

But he’s just not there yet:

September 15, 2008
Obama's teleprompter hits the trail

(CNN) — It appears Barack Obama's teleprompter is hitting the campaign trail.

The Democratic presidential nominee has never tried to hide the fact he delivers speeches off the device, though normally he doesn't use one at standard campaign rallies and town hall events.

But the Illinois senator used a teleprompter at both his Colorado events Monday — making for a particularly peculiar scene in Pueblo, where the prompter was set up in the middle of what is normally a rodeo ring.

Don’t worry, Obama. Not everyone is cut out for extemporaneous speaking. You read the teleprompter very well, and let’s face it, not everyone can even do that.

And we know what can happen without the teleprompter. You are making a wise choice in continuing to rely on your crutch. You need it. And it takes a big man to admit when he is not good enough to make it on his own.

Monday, September 15, 2008

You can't get enough of enough is enough

The hot new catch-phrase in the campaign: Enough is enough.

Obama, responding to Team McCain saying Obama’s “lipstick on a pig” remark was sexist and/or generally insulting:

“They seize on innocent remarks, try to throw them out of context, throw up an outrageous ad because they know that it’s catnip for the news media,” Obama said before delivering remarks about education to a small group of supporters gathered in a high school library. “I don’t care what they say about me but I love this country too much to let them take over another election with lies and phony outrage and swift boat politics. Enough is enough.”

McCain, responding to the current financial crisis:

“Enough is enough. We are going to reform the way Wall Street does business and put an end to the greed that has driven our markets into chaos. We will stop multimillion dollar payouts to CEO’s who have broken the public trust. We will put an end to running Wall Street like a casino. We will make businesses work for the benefit of their shareholders and employees. And we will make sure that your savings, IRA, 401k and pension accounts are protected.”

While McCain's version seems to be of the "Kick the bums out!" variety, Obama's is more "Stop lying about my record!"

Obama '08
Not just running against John McSame and George W. Bush.
Now we're taking on George H.W. Bush too!
...as Bob Dole

Sarah Aristoi

This article by Steven Hayward in the Weekly Standard addresses an idea that has fascinated us ever since Sarah Palin was selected as John McCain’s running mate.

We will just quote the beginning with the obligatory exhortation…

Give 'em Hell, Sarah
Like Truman, a natural-born executive.

Lurking just below the surface of the second-guessing about Sarah Palin's fitness to be president is the serious question of whether we still believe in the American people's capacity for self-government, what we mean when we affirm that all American citizens are equal, and whether we tacitly believe there are distinct classes of citizens and that American government at the highest levels is an elite occupation.

Read the whole thing!

And for better or worse, we anticipate putting up a piece we are finishing that takes up the same basic idea but with a slightly different approach – free from all that intellectual rigor and application of historical examples … but with more snark! Perhaps you will see it sometime in the next several days.

Sleepover!

(CHARLOTTE, N.C.) - Joe Biden came up with an interesting metaphor tonight.

When telling the story of how his granddaughters had a slumber party with Barack Obama’s daughters during the week of the Democratic National Convention, Biden equated it to what he says Americans want.

“I believe that's a metaphor, a metaphor for what the country is looking for. They're looking for a sleepover with people they like!”

This is problematic on a number of levels.

Not least of which is the Obama campaign’s revelation that they are bedwetters.

And of course, Biden’s metaphor is just a variation on the same theme that “who would you want to have a beer with” represents.

But with the beer replaced by pj's.

Let’s up the metaphor alert from problematic to disturbing.

And from Politico:

UPDATE: Asked what Biden meant, spokesman David Wade clarifies (?): "Could you imagine a sleepover with Dick Cheney, Karl Rove, Phil Gramm and George Bush? I couldn't either."

True. Because they’re adults who outgrew sleepovers some time ago.

But apparently David Wade can imagine Joe Biden (and Obama) showing up on our doorstep with a sleeping bag and a toothbrush.

Obama-Biden ‘08
Light as a Feather, Stiff as a Board!

Friday, September 12, 2008

It's not just McCain's age

We were amused that on the day when Obama's campaign manager David Plouffe said they were going to make the campaign about the big issues, that Team Obama, because they had yet another pair of gloves to take off, went straight for McCain's age, with the punchline that McCain doesn't even know how to send emails.

We weren't outraged, we were amused.

But now seeing this Jonah Goldberg post, we are reconsidering:

Yep. The day after 9/11, as part of its "get tough" makeover, the Obama campaign is mocking John McCain for not using a computer, without caring why he doesn't use a computer. From the AP story about the computer illiterate ad:

"Our economy wouldn't survive without the Internet, and cyber-security continues to represent one our most serious national security threats," [Obama spokesman Dan] Pfeiffer said. "It's extraordinary that someone who wants to be our president and our commander in chief doesn't know how to send an e-mail."

Well, I guess it depends on what you mean by "extraordinary." The reason he doesn't send email is that he can't use a keyboard because of the relentless beatings he received from the Viet Cong in service to our country. From the Boston Globe (March 4, 2000):

McCain gets emotional at the mention of military families needing food stamps or veterans lacking health care. The outrage comes from inside: McCain's severe war injuries prevent him from combing his hair, typing on a keyboard, or tying his shoes. Friends marvel at McCain's encyclopedic knowledge of sports. He's an avid fan - Ted Williams is his hero - but he can't raise his arm above his shoulder to throw a baseball.

We're going to go back to that Plouffe quote again:

But as Barack Obama said earlier this week “enough is enough.” This election is too important and the challenges too big to spend the next 54 days talking about trivial non-issues…

Yeah. Because a completely healthy McCain sending emails or not actually is a trivial non-issue.

But, because of the genius that is Team Obama, McCain being attacked for not sending emails when he can't do so precisely because of the injuries he sustained as a prisoner of war has boosted this issue to headline-grabbing, non-trivial status.

There's a mole in the Obama campaign. There simply must be.

That or basic campaigning is simply above Obama's pay grade.

“We’re sensitive to the fluid dynamics of the campaign”

Despite some rough patches over the last several weeks, Team Obama remains confident:

But Obama's aides said they were confident with the course of the campaign. They said that, other than making some shifts around the edges, particularly in response to McCain's effort to seize the change issue from Obama, they were not planning any major deviation from a strategy that called for a steady escalation of attacks on McCain as the race heads toward the debates.

And the authors of the article seek to ease our worried mind as well:

That response is characteristic for a campaign that has presented itself as disciplined and unflappable and is reminiscent of the way Obama's campaign reacted a year ago when it came under fire from allies who said it was not being tough enough in going after Senator Hillary.

Back to Team Obama:

"We're sensitive to the fluid dynamics of the campaign, but we have a game plan and a strategy," said Obama's campaign manager, David Plouffe. "We're familiar with this.”

Whew. Take heart Obama supporters, they have everything under control.

Or do they?

What are these “fluid dynamics” of which Plouffe speaks?

“And I'm sure between now and Nov. 4 there will be another period of hand-wringing and bed-wetting.”

Team Obama has a bladder control problem.



(h/t Greg Pollowitz)

McCain's age never gets old

Byron York relays Obama campaign manager David Plouffe’s latest memo:

In recent weeks, John McCain has shown that he is willing to go into the gutter to win this election. His campaign has become nothing but a series of smears, lies, and cynical attempts to distract from the issues that matter to the American people. But as Barack Obama said earlier this week “enough is enough.” This election is too important and the challenges too big to spend the next 54 days talking about trivial non-issues…

We will respond with speed and ferocity to John McCain’s attacks and we will take the fight to him, but we will do it on the big issues that matter to the American people. We will not allow John McCain and his band of Karl Rove disciples to make this big election about small things.

OK! Back to the really big issues!

You know what’s a really big and important thing?

John McCain’s age!

The newest ad showcasing their hard line includes unflattering footage of McCain at a hearing in the early '80s, wearing giant glasses and an out-of-style suit, interspersed with shots of a disco ball, a clunky phone, an outdated computer and a Rubik's Cube.

"1982, John McCain goes to Washington," an announcer says over chirpy elevator music. "Things have changed in the last 26 years, but McCain hasn't.

"He admits he still doesn't know how to use a computer, can't send an e-mail,

Barack Obama ‘08
Outta my way old man!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

World doesn’t end

Women and minorities protons hardest hit

Obama on defense

There is little doubt that this race has changed. From Obama's abandonment of hope and change and new politics, including his many flip flops, to a less than expected bounce from the Democratic Convention to what is shaping up to be a larger than expected bounce for the Republicans from the GOP Convention, and perhaps most of all the game-changing selection of Sarah Palin as the vice presidential nominee - this race has changed.

Obama is abadoning the 50 state strategy, and signs are pointing to his fundraising falling short of the campaign's goals.

Obama is no longer on offense, (though he can still be offensive).

Obama appears to be shifting into a defensive mode - and between recent polling and as a result where he is choosing to campaign may help tell the story.

On Campaign Spot, Jim Geraghty wrote:

Third Straight Poll Puts McCain/Palin Within Margin of Error in Michigan

Well, judging by where Obama is spending his time, it would appear that his internal polls are saying the same thing:

Monday was Obama's third visit to Michigan in nine days, highlighting the closeness of the race here and the need to hold onto a state not won by a Republican nominee since 1988.

That is a lot of time in a state that was not originally on the top of most people's list of swing states, but which now Obama must defend, taking away money, resources and time from other states also in play.

In this TheVIMH Exclusive photo from a recent Obama rally in Michigan, apparently some Obama supporters understand the state of the race:

Obama plays defense in Michigan

If you don't see it at first, pay attention to the sign toward the upper right of the photo.

MORE: But don't just take our word for it, Leon Panetta says it as well:

“My concern is that I see them as totally reactive right now as opposed to getting out there on their own and saying what the hell they are about,” said Leon Panetta, a former chief of staff to Bill Clinton who has advised Mr. Obama. “They seem to be intimidated by the Palin pick. They seem to be intimidated by how the Republicans are coming at them on change. And you cannot win if you are constantly on defense.”

(h/t Red State)



UPDATE: [8:00am] We are currently experiencing techincal difficulties with the pic, and apologize for the inconvenience. We will correct the problem as soon as possible. We anticipate having the issue resolved no later than 11am this morning. We thank you for your patience and understanding in this matter.

UPDATE: [1:00pm] ::grumble::, “…tech support is unavailable to take your call, please try again later.” Come back around 6pm if you’re interested in seeing the photo, which at this point, we don’t blame you if you aren’t. Oh, and kidding about “tech support” – we are unable to access the photo from our current environs and will have to wait until we are in a secure, undisclosed location to do so.

FINALLY: [4:00pm] Link to pic fixed!



Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Obama blows more than he sucks

Via Hot Air, we find out that Obama may be blowing through his money faster than he can suck it out of his contributors:

After months of record-breaking fund-raising, a new sense of urgency in Senator Barack Obama’s fund-raising team is palpable as the full weight of the campaign’s decision to bypass public financing for the general election is suddenly upon it.

Pushing a fund-raiser later this month, a finance staff member sent a sharply worded note last week to Illinois members of its national finance committee, calling their recent efforts “extremely anemic.” …

The signs of concern have become evident in recent weeks as early fund-raising totals have suggested that Mr. Obama’s decision to bypass public financing may not necessarily afford him the commanding financing advantage over Senator John McCain that many had originally predicted

Well, shoot. We thought our idea to pass the Bipartisan Campaign Finance Windfall Profits Tax Reform Act of 2008 was a good one.

But we'll be happy for it not to be necessary, of course.

Just who is Sarah Palin?

Three points of data irrefutably put the lie to one of the strongest selling points of the Sarah Palin campaign (f/k/a the McCain campaign).

First, Sarah Palin occupies the highest ranking public office in the largest state in the nation.

Second, not only does Alaska possess the longest coastline in the country, its coastline is longer than all other states combined.

Third, Sarah Palin has to travel over 2500 miles and even cross another freakin’ country just to get to Middle America.

The only conclusion one can draw from this data is this:

Sarah Palin is an out-of-touch coastal elite far removed from the Middle-America she and her supporters claims she represents.

[VIMH: Surely you can’t be serious]
First, I seldom am.

Second, surely my "attack" on Palin can be taken as seriously as claims that she is like a Muslim fundamentalist with lipstick or a seductive, whip-wielding dominatrix (h/t Geraghty).

Third, if anyone truly thinks that Sarah Palin is a religious extremist who is dependent upon her sex appeal to seduce voters or actually believes that characterizing her as such can sway independent voters, we’ve got a bridge (to nowhere) we’d like to offer them. In fact, there’s a chance they can get that bridge for pennies on the dollar, with the federal government chipping in for the rest … if we can just get Sarah Palin out of the governor’s mansion in Alaska and keep Joe Biden and Barack Obama in the Senate.

McCain-Palin ‘08
If you want another shot at the bridge to nowhere


Monday, September 8, 2008

Palin is a hit…or a click

The thought occurred to us this morning – how many Google hits does each candidate in this year’s presidential race get.

Here you go - the Google results count for each candidate/ticket run this morning:

Results 1 - 10 of about 44,400,000 for "john mccain". (0.17 seconds)
Results 1 - 10 of about 21,800,000 for "sarah palin". (0.11 seconds)

Total GOP: about 66,200,000

Results 1 - 10 of about 63,800,000 for "barack obama". (0.16 seconds)
Results 1 - 10 of about 5,750,000 for "joe biden". (0.20 seconds)

Total DNC: about 69,550,000

Hmmm, Palin really fills the "Google search results gap" on the GOP ticket. We wonder if the GOP ticket is on its way to overtaking the Dems in overall Google search results?

Might keep track of this one.

Sarah Palin, Global Warming Crusader

Much has been made of the moose hunting proclivities of Governor Sarah Palin, endearing her to many on the gun-loving right and causing her to be vilified by many on the left.

And today, Mark Steyn offers this in the Corner:

Moose blarney [Mark Steyn]

Our pal Jay Nordlinger was on Irish radio yesterday, and several callers objected to Sarah Palin on the following grounds:

The woman shoots moose, as did Teddy Roosevelt, a long time ago. Only in TR’s day, there were many more moose — Sarah endangers a species.

Absolutely backwards, but an interesting example of how the progressive mind prefers to obsess on entirely fictional crises. There were far fewer moose in Teddy's day. ... We have a moose surplus.

Ah, good point. And to be very explicit, a moose surplus is BAD.

For the earth.

Because moose cause global warming:

The poor old Scandinavian moose is now being blamed for climate change, with researchers in Norway claiming that a grown moose can produce 2,100 kilos of carbon dioxide a year -- equivalent to the CO2 output resulting from a 13,000 kilometer car journey.

Assuming that moose in Alaska emit as much greenhouse gas as moose in Norway (and let's face it, surely American moose are much less likely to be climate change conscious than their more enlightened European counterparts), then Sarah Palin is on the front lines of combating global warming by killing moose – assuming that she isn’t driving more than 8,000 miles to bag the moose.

Sarah Palin, Saving The Earth One Kill At A Time.

May your aim be true and your bag limits be reached.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Obama's bad luck

Well, if you remember the most memorable and moving part of McCain's convention speech, it was the recounting of his time as a prisoner of war, told to us not to make himself out to be a hero, but to show his recognition of true humility, which led to his deep love of and desire to serve his country.

If you have not yet seen the speech or read it in full, do. But here is the relevant excerpt:

Long ago, something unusual happened to me that taught me the most valuable lesson of my life. I was blessed by misfortune. I mean that sincerely. I was blessed because I served in the company of heroes, and I witnessed a thousand acts of courage, compassion and love. [...]

I fell in love with my country when I was a prisoner in someone else’s. I loved it not just for the many comforts of life here. I loved it for its decency; for its faith in the wisdom, justice and goodness of its people. I loved it because it was not just a place, but an idea, a cause worth fighting for. I was never the same again. I wasn’t my own man anymore. I was my country’s.

I’m not running for president because I think I’m blessed with such personal greatness that history has anointed me to save our country in its hour of need. My country saved me. My country saved me, and I cannot forget it. And I will fight for her for as long as I draw breath, so help me God.

You know who else was moved by that speech?

Barack Obama. Recognizing the power behind the story (or sermon as M. Simon characterized the speech), Obama came up with this today:

"I have friends whose parents were in the military. There are a lot of Army, military bases there.

“And I actually always thought of the military as an ennobling and, you know, honorable option. But keep in mind that I graduated in 1979. The Vietnam War had come to an end. We weren't engaged in an active military conflict at that point. And so, it's not an option that I ever decided to pursue.”

Shorter Obama: "Hey, I coulda been a POW, woulda been a POW, just like McCain. I coulda been a hero, woulda been a hero, just like McCain. But damn my luck there was no war on. You really shouldn't give McCain so much credit for his good luck and my bad luck."

Good luck with that.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

BREAKING NEWS: Oprah has PMS

Oh, no, not that. Not that at all.

We believe it was The Anchoress who came up with the new locution:

Roger Kimball: From BDS to PDS, no, Sarah is a girl. She can’t give them PDS. She gives them PMS: Palin Madness Syndrome. In fact, that is what I think we should start calling the press: The PMS Media!

Palin Madness Syndrome.

There's a lot we don't yet know about this syndrome, but, unfortunately for America, PMS seems to be highly contagious:

“The item in today’s Drudge Report is categorically untrue. There has been absolutely no discussion about having Sarah Palin on my show. At the beginning of this presidential campaign when I decided that I was going to take my first public stance in support of a candidate, I made the decision not to use my show as a platform for any of the candidates. I agree that Sarah Palin would be a fantastic interview, and I would love to have her on after the campaign is over.” – Oprah Winfrey, September 5, 2008

Now, to be honest, we don't believe that Oprah should be bullied into putting Palin on her show. It's her show, it's her choice. As long as Oprah realizes the cost it may have to her in viewership, she can make any decision she wants.

And let's be honest. We think that Oprah will be strong enough to stand her ground and ignore Sarah Palin.

Unlike Barack Obama.

Odd, that. For Oprah, ignoring Sarah Palin is against her own self-interest, yet she by all appearances is willing and able to do so. For Obama, ignoring Sarah Palin is in his self interest, yet he by all appearances is either not willing or not able to do so.



Reconnecting the disconnect

So, maybe we're late to this -- but there is an awful disconnect with those on the left saying that Sarah Palin is a bad mother for accepting the VP nomination when she has five kids to take care of, including an infant with Down Syndrome.

We distinctly remember these same people telling us endlessly that women could have it all -- that women shouldn't be held back by the notion that raising a family and having a career were mutually exclusive -- that a woman could do anything a man could do. And while we often recoil at the shrillness of the tone, in the end we have very little disagreement with the underlying sentiment.

But where is this new disconnect now on display concerning Palin coming from?

Where in the world would these people get the idea that being a mother and a career woman is so tough?

I wake up every morning wondering how on earth I am going to pull off that next minor miracle to get through the day. I know that everybody in this room is going through this. That is the dilemma women face today. Every woman that I know, regardless of race, education, income, background, political affiliation, is struggling to keep her head above water. We try to convince ourselves that somehow doing it all is a badge of honor, but for many of us it is a necessity and we have to be very careful not to lose ourselves in the process. More often than not, we as women, are the primary caretakers in our households, scheduling babysitters, planning play dates, keeping up with regular doctor’s appointments; this was my week last week, supervising homework, handing our discipline. Usually we are the ones in charge of keeping the household together. I know you men, I know that you guys try to do your part, but the reality is that we’re doing it, right? (laughter and applause) Laundry, cleaning, cooking, shopping, home repairs. You know Barack has my back, he’s right there with me, feels my pain, and all that.

Oh. Right.

So, when we originally read those words from Michelle Obama, we wrote the following:

If she thinks it's hard out there as the wife of a Senator and the wife of a Presidential candidate, just think of the demands of being first lady. And the strains of having your husband and your kids' father being President. If she thinks raising her family is hard now, if she thinks she can barely keep her head above water now, she in no way should think that she could make it with Barack in the White House. [...]

For the love of God, won't somebody think of the children!

Of course, we were kidding about Obama dropping out, it made for a good joke.

But why are these Democrats, now oh so concerned with Sarah Palin's parenting, not concerned with Michelle?

Sarah appears to go about the business of raising her family and having her career and being wildly successful in each.

Michelle, in this campaign, has gone about the business of telling us its nearly impossible to have a family and a career.

For the love of God, won't somebody think of Michelle!

And more importantly, won't somebody think of anything other than scoring partisan points in the effort to win an election?

Friday, September 5, 2008

On McCain's speech

We must admit, we started to groan when McCain started in on the POW experience....that should be left to surrogates. Fred Thompson's telling of McCain's captivity a couple of nights ago was masterful.

We certainly expect there will be those on the left who will cry foul, "he's shamelessly using his POW status as an absolute moral authority card" (insert all caps and lots of exclamation points for visuals).

But as McCain began telling the story, it became clear -- the whole thing was set up to show his recognition of true humility, which led to his deep love of and desire to serve his country.

He was rejecting the experience as something that made him a hero ... it made him a servant.

We were going to try and summarize the parts of the speech that lay this out, but the text of the speech itself is too compelling to do it the injustice of substituting our own words. It's a long quote - and if we had a "read more" function enabled to hide it in an extended entry. But we don't so here it is:

I’ve been an imperfect servant of my country for many years. But I have been her servant first, last and always. And I’ve never lived a day, in good times or bad, that I didn’t thank God for the privilege.

Long ago, something unusual happened to me that taught me the most valuable lesson of my life. I was blessed by misfortune. I mean that sincerely. I was blessed because I served in the company of heroes, and I witnessed a thousand acts of courage, compassion and love.

On an October morning, in the Gulf of Tonkin, I prepared for my 23rd mission over North Vietnam. I hadn’t any worry I wouldn’t come back safe and sound. I thought I was tougher than anyone. I was pretty independent then, too. I liked to bend a few rules, and pick a few fights for the fun of it. But I did it for my own pleasure; my own pride. I didn’t think there was a cause more important than me.

Then I found myself falling toward the middle of a small lake in the city of Hanoi, with two broken arms, a broken leg, and an angry crowd waiting to greet me. I was dumped in a dark cell, and left to die. I didn’t feel so tough anymore. When they discovered my father was an admiral, they took me to a hospital. They couldn’t set my bones properly, so they just slapped a cast on me. When I didn’t get better, and was down to about a hundred pounds, they put me in a cell with two other Americans. I couldn’t do anything. I couldn’t even feed myself. They did it for me. I was beginning to learn the limits of my selfish independence. Those men saved my life.

I was in solitary confinement when my captors offered to release me. I knew why. If I went home, they would use it as propaganda to demoralize my fellow prisoners. Our Code said we could only go home in the order of our capture, and there were men who had been shot down before me. I thought about it, though. I wasn’t in great shape, and I missed everything about America. But I turned it down.

A lot of prisoners had it worse than I did. I’d been mistreated before, but not as badly as others. I always liked to strut a little after I’d been roughed up to show the other guys I was tough enough to take it. But after I turned down their offer, they worked me over harder than they ever had before. For a long time. And they broke me.

When they brought me back to my cell, I was hurt and ashamed, and I didn’t know how I could face my fellow prisoners. The good man in the cell next door, my friend, Bob Craner, saved me. Through taps on a wall he told me I had fought as hard as I could. No man can always stand alone. And then he told me to get back up and fight again for our country and for the men I had the honor to serve with. Because every day they fought for me.

I fell in love with my country when I was a prisoner in someone else’s. I loved it not just for the many comforts of life here. I loved it for its decency; for its faith in the wisdom, justice and goodness of its people. I loved it because it was not just a place, but an idea, a cause worth fighting for. I was never the same again. I wasn’t my own man anymore. I was my country’s.

I’m not running for president because I think I’m blessed with such personal greatness that history has anointed me to save our country in its hour of need. My country saved me. My country saved me, and I cannot forget it. And I will fight for her for as long as I draw breath, so help me God.

When we awoke the day after Obama's speech, all we could remember were the fireworks and the columns.

Obama's speech lost most of its value overnight. McCain's has made a permanent impact. At least on us.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Why press the issue

Seriously. Surely the “she’s a good teleprompter reader” line is something some VRWC agent has somehow implanted into the subconscious of lefty Obamaphiles trying to belittle Palin’s speech.

Because, just like the attacks on her experience, the discussion of teleprompters actually puts the issue in terms where Obama has some serious problems.

So, we suppose we shouldn't be surprised to find some preemptive attacks, the subject of which apply to Obama.

Rich Lowry on the Corner points us to this from Jonathan Alter of Newsweek:

I'd imagine that Palin will dodge press conferences in favor of interviews with people like Sean Hannity, Larry King and Ellen DeGeneres. Then, when the media complain that she is being kept away, the McCain campaign will cite the half dozen or so interviews she has granted as proof that the campaign press is just bellyaching. Brief press "avails" on the plane will be useless, unless reporters ask open-ended queries designed to elicit proof of real knowledge.

Well, let’s just get this out in the open:

“Why can’t I just eat my waffle?”

…and…

“Come on, I already answered like eight questions.”

…are defenses Sarah Palin will not use to avoid questions from the media.

If Palin doesn’t want to talk to the press, she’ll just pull a gun on them.

“Dance, press boy, dance”

She knows what she's doing

Catching up a little bit from our weekend, we are just now getting to James Taranto’s Best of the Web Today, from Monday. In it he writes:

One prominent Democrat who has been very quite on the Palin choice is Hillary Clinton, who on Friday, according to CNN, put out a gracious statement:

"We should all be proud of Governor Sarah Palin's historic nomination, and I congratulate her and Senator McCain," Clinton, the first woman to win a presidential primary, said in the statement. "While their policies would take America in the wrong direction, Governor Palin will add an important new voice to the debate."

A lot of time and energy has been spent trying to divine whether the presence of Palin on the Republican ticket could pry Hillary supporters away from the Democrats.

Fair enough. Go for it.

But another interesting thought is that Palin offers Hillary a very plausible excuse to take a less active role in supporting Obama – she can make the point (privately) that she is not comfortable participating in attacking a woman candidate of either party. Girl Power! And yes, Hillary is happy with any excuse to sit this out without looking like she’s intentionally undermining Obama. She would love nothing more than for Obama to lose, clearing the way for her to challenge an incumbent McCain in 2012.

So, sitting out helps undermine Obama’s campaign. But what Hillary really needs is to sabotage it. What could she do to sabotage the Obama campaign? Ahhh, back to Taranto:

The New York Times reports that advisers to Mrs. Clinton will play a "greater role" in the Obama campaign as a result of the Palin pick

[VIMH: Are you suggesting Hillary is sending in her advisers with instructions to sabotage Team Obama?]
Oh, no, that's not it at all. After seeing how deftly her campaign managed to take what was to be her inevitable coronation and turn it into a thumping at the hands of the “former community organizer”, she has sent them in and told them to do everything they can to help Obama win.

To achieve the opposite.



MORE: Well, from Hot Air, we didn't like this NY Times headline "Obama Camp Turns to Clinton to Counter Palin", because it's kinda counter to our theory. But, why not actually read the thing...

Advisers to Mrs. Clinton said that she stood ready to help the Obama-Biden ticket, but they urged the campaign not to overestimate the impact Mrs. Clinton could have, noting that she had other commitments this fall, like campaigning and raising money for Senate candidates.

And rearranging her sock drawer.

On Sarah Palin's speech

We'll let others give the thorough reviews of Sarah Palin's speech. We'd put in a couple of links, but they'd just be to the same places as always anyways, and besides the swooning we are currently undergoing makes that kinda difficult right now.

Our immediate reaction last night to the speech went like this...

As objectively as I love it so, love her so, love the speech so, and no matter how much I would no matter anything else -- the thought that Sarah Palin delivered this speech under this pressure with this amount of sickening vitriol from the left, the media and the Dems has given me a respect for her that cannot be shaken.

We feel the same this morning.

Your move, Senator Obama. Think carefully about your response. Palin went after you hard last night, inviting a hard response.

Because she wants it.

You can stand up to a little ol’ small town mayor, can’t you?

Slack-jawed

Andrew Sullivan, liveblogging Sarah Palin's speech:

10.39 pm. I'm just slack-jawed that, so far, the entire speech has been basically about her family. She seems as if she just won a reality show and is introducing her folks. And they have passed the baby now to four different people - including another child. Slack-jawed.

Pass the baby to four different people!?!!? Egads! The Humanity!

Obamas church experience:

As young marrieds, Barack and Michelle (who also didn't go to church regularly as a child) went to church fairly often-two or three times a month. But after their first child, Malia, was born, they found making the effort more difficult. "I don't know if you've had the experience of taking young, squirming children to church, but it's not easy," he says. "Trinity was always packed, and so you had to get there early. And if you went to the morning service, you were looking at-it just was difficult. So that would cut back on our involvement."

Slack-jawed.


Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Somebody has to say it

Friday:

DAYTON, Ohio - Republican John McCain introduced first-term Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as his vice presidential running mate Friday, a stunning selection of a little-known conservative newcomer who relishes fighting the establishment.

Yesterday:

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- U.S. crude futures for October delivery dropped $5.75 a barrel to settle $109.71. It was the lowest oil has settled since April 8, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

Today:

Oil prices extended their decline Wednesday…

Crude futures for October delivery were down $1.80 to $107.91 a barrel

Correlation obviously does not necessarily mean causation, but you name a pro-drilling Alaska Governor to the Republican ticket and look what happens…

Kidding.

Oil traders banking on high oil prices to make a profit probably need not be terribly worried about Palin at this point. Not as worried as the caribou in ANWR should be, what with the prospect of facing the famed hunter with the power of the office of vice president in her possession, eager to exploit the oil rich area.

Kidding.

She won’t be culling herds of caribou in ANWR.

Ah, but think about it … Cheney will be out of office in a few months.

Kidding.

Cheney typically gets his outdoor mojo on in Jackson Hole, WY (that is, unless he’s fishing with “naked ladies” in Idaho when he’s in a good mood or hunting quail in South Texas when he’s in a bad mood), so the Alaskan caribou are safe.

But, perhaps Cheney should be worried – Palin does relish taking on big oil.

Kidding.

It’s Obama who should be worried, what with his big oil connections and actually facing her in the election.

More on Palin

We’ve talked before about the “who do you want to have a beer with” vote – and Sarah Palin may break the machine that would measure such things. Who wouldn’t want to have a beer with her – and we’re not just talking about her looks – she’s a bush pilot, a moose hunter, a commercial fisherwoman, she was raised by wolves and once killed a Kodiak bear with her bare hands.

Those last two may prove apocryphal.

Another thought - Sarah Palin introduces the “who would you want your child to grow up and marry” vote in a way that makes others pale by comparison. Again, not because of her physical attractiveness, but because of the way that she lives life to the fullest, loves those around her with vigor, and gets things done – she does all the big things in life right.

Sure, there will be plenty of people who would want their children to grow up and marry Obama. But how many people would like to imagine their daughter belonging to, and then their grandkids being raised in Trinity United Church of Christ under the pastorship of Reverend Wright?

Last thought – as easy as it was to predict that the left would overreact in vile and destructive ways toward Palin, here’s another easy prediction: the Left will misunderestimate Palin as a candidate. Count on it. Harder to predict is the actual success McCain-Palin will ultimately have at the ballot box – vice presidential candidates don’t decide election in and of themselves.


But we wonder if the Left will be as successful at misunderestimating their way to defeat against McCain-Palin as they have been with George Bush in two elections.

FIRST HINT: A pool on when Palin will drop out?