Thursday, July 31, 2008

Gallup's Poll Controversy

In the past few days, many Obama supporters seem to have been a little down. The most recent Gallup poll shows McCain leading Obama among likely voters. I have written about this before and cited how registered voters are the most dependant voters who we can poll. Likely voters very rarely turn up, are less excited and are also very likely to be more fickle on their voting decision. Luckily, those of us who read polls constantly know that Gallup is one of the worst pollsters out there and this recent poll is a glaring example of pollsters trying to falsely tighten the race.

Gallup was asked how they determined if a voters was a "likely voter".

"As for how "likely voters" were identified, USA Today reports that respondents were asked "how much thought they had given the election, how often they voted in the past and whether they plan to vote this fall." Fair enough. But the very next sentence raises even more questions about whether USA Today's effort is actually a snapshot of the electorate, as its website claims, or enters the realm of forward-looking hypothesizing. Buried in the ninth paragraph of USA Today's own write-up, they reveal that "McCain's gains came because there was an even number of likely voters from each party. Last month, the Democrats had an 11-point edge."
Abramowitz says this contradiction is the equivalent of polling malpractice. "It is simply not plausible that there would be an 11-point swing in party ID among likely voters or that there is now an even split in the likely electorate between Republicans and Democrats," he wrote in an email to the Huffington Post."

So, Gallup claims that voter's are identifying with the GOP more this month than last. Maybe, but as Abramowitz points out, 11 points is impossible for the beleaguered party. There hasn't been a single poll out this season that suggests party ID is anywhere close to even. So, what Gallup did was search and search until they found the number that created an even split.

From fivethirtyeight,

"How do you get from a 47-44 Obama lead among RVs to a 49-45 McCain
lead among LVs?A few quick calculations shows how. You have 900 RVs and 791 LVs, so that means that among your 109 UVs (that's unlikely voters according to
Gallup) Obama leads McCain by a whopping 61% to 7%. Putting it another way,
according to Gallup 16% of registered Obama supporters are unlikely to vote
compared with only 2% of registered McCain supporters."


Keeping the race close is what the media and pollsters want. I don't think that they're trying to "get" Obama, I just think that elections are the a tremendous source of revenue, especially for pollsters like Gallup who usually don't get any attention from anyone in the off season. It is a bit scary though. The polls drive the media narratives and those narratives can set the tone for the campaigns.

Gallup Chief Frank Newport admits that this was a little fishy.

So sure, "under a scenario" where McCain's voters are energized at a level equal to Obama's and the national distribution of party ID is equal between Democrats and Republicans, perhaps it would make sense to see McCain with a four-point lead in a poll with a plus/minus 4 percent margin of error. But engineering coverage of a poll with metrics contrived to show results under a certain "scenario" sounds more prospective and hypothetical than the paper's stated mission of covering polls as momentary snapshots and "not forecasts of far-off election days." As Newport said on MSNBC this morning: "The likely voters simply tell us that turnout could make a difference."



Yeah, but polls are not supposed to be based on a series of "what-if" scenarios. I'm done with Gallup until they apologize or run a story admitting their errors.

My Gallup-esque poll question: If McCain was 46 and Obama was 71, who would you vote for?

Ridiculous, but not too far from what Gallup did.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

2000, 2004 and 2008 Election Fraud...

There is one thing we should know with complete certainty - the Republicans will definitely try to steal this election. It’s how they play the game, it’s what they’re good at, they’ve gotten away with it twice - they don’t know any better. The only real questions are: have we found the courage to stand up to them, and can we stop them?

We have not shown that we are capable of standing up to them. Just look at Pelosi and Reid, and all the other paper tigers we have up on Capital hill just capitulating their little asses off. Doesn’t exactly inspire one with confidence.

Furthermore, we have not done our due diligence in assuring the integrity of our electoral system and the mechanisms the Republicans used to steal 2000 and 2004 remain firmly in place in many parts of the country.

From Truthout.org

"With record low approval ratings for the Bush/Cheney regime and the albatross of an unpopular war hanging from the GOP's neck, do you think that a Democratic presidential candidate will win the White House, get us out of Iraq, and end our long national nightmare?

Think again - the mighty election theft machine Karl Rove used to steal the US presidency in 2000 and 2004 may be under attack, but it is still in place for the upcoming 2008 election.

With his usual devious mastery, Rove has seized upon the national outrage sparked by his electoral larceny and used it as smokescreen while he makes the American electoral system even MORE unfair, and even EASIER to rig. Thus the administration has fired federal attorneys when they would not participate in a nationwide campaign to deny minorities and the poor their access to the polls. It has spent millions of taxpayer dollars to install electronic voting machines that can be "flipped" with a few keystrokes. And under the guise of "reforming" our busted electoral system, it is setting us up for another presidential theft in 2008."


I did my senior thesis on the 2000 Election and there are some serious issues out there that we must deal with. Greg Palast is the authority on this issue and has exhaustively investigated this very real problem.







And what machines do many US states use?



If you want to read the facts, checks this article out.

And this makes everyone feel great.



And of course you remember the exit poll problems of 2004?




Don't be surprised and don't buy into the GOP "stop whining" narrative.

Obama and the Convention

I've been without the Internet for almost a week now and have now been welcomed back by my old friend.

The past week has been quite typical. McCain attacks, backtracks, changes the story, throws in the words "surge", "POW" and "straight-talk" and continues to run the dirtiest campaign many of us have been alive for. I don't need to rehash any of that.

I will instead tell you what Obama needs to do and when he should do it. If we look at the composites of the polls we can see that Obama got a hearty three or four point bounce from his travels. First of all, DO NOT LISTEN TO THE MEDIA when they claim that this is a "dead heat". Again, they just want that perception for ratings. He is leading anywhere from four to twelve points now and remember that these polls are conducted on landlines and do not include those voters who ONLY have cell phones. That demographic tends to be young and more often minorities. The polls are slightly favoring the McCain bloc and he is still losing handily.

Here is a quick Gallup tracker. Personally, I think Gallup is one of the worst pollsters out there, but it seems to be the metric by which most voters gauge the state of the season.



You can see Obama has a clear lead and I am willing to bet that these numbers won't tighten too much more. So what does Obama need to do up to the convention?

1) Timing is everything here and he has to remember that McCain has very little to work with beyond good timing to counter Obama's move. The next major step is announcing his VP. The Olympics start next week. He needs to announce it right before the Games start. When he does this, McCain will immediately announce right after him and then the press is going to have a choice during the Olympics: talk about the Games, Obama VP or McCain VP. The narrative is not as important because the political interest will be low anyways. In doing this, Obama can effectively limit the bounce that McCain would get from such an announcement. Low public interest AND the fact that Obama has bought millions in airtime during the Games. McCain has not done so. He can't afford it. So, announce before the games. Let the press go wild. McCain announces and the press question the timing. The Olympics start and McCain gets no bounce.

2) The VP choice is crucial and I have speculated many times as to who he might choice, still he needs to make sure that August affords several stops with Hillary. 86% of Dems have lined up behind Obama, but there STILL are a few out there who have moved to Nader, McCain or have simply given up. Tour a little with her AND your VP and that should help mend the wounds. I also think that having Hillary out there attacking McCain (she's good at that) would get her embittered supporters moving.

3) Obama has to pack that stadium with the loudest and wildest crowd he can find. He also needs to make sure that he does not ban protests outside the stadium like McCain did. This will hurt his cause.

4) And finally, Obama needs to play it cool. McCain has been a slime ball this month and last and it will only get worse as he discovers he is more ineffective than Dole. Let him attack. Obama should resist the urge to defend against such garbage. He should continue to be slightly smug and as he did with Hillary, brush it off and not let McCain have any ammo.

McCain has ended his political life with this campaign. He will come close to losing his own state in November and will not run again in the Senate. Too bad he had to end it this way.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Constant Contradictions

I prefer Constant Cravings, but this is from Open Left:

McCain's attacks against Obama have become so regularly contradictory, at this point we should probably hold a contest to determine which is your favorite. Here are three good ones from the last ten days alone:

Seventeen days after taking a trip abroad to Columbia and Mexico, five weeks after giving a paid campaign speech in Canada, and two months after criticizing Obama for not going to Iraq, the McCain campaign criticizes Obama for taking a trip abroad that includes a stop in Iraq.

Eleven days after holding a press conference to claim that Obama is a serial flip-flopper, McCain argues that Obama is the most extremist member of the Senate.

Five days after releasing a documentary criticizing Obama for flip-flopping on Iraq, the McCain campaign argues that Obama is too inflexible on Iraq.

After spending April and May calling Obama an elitist, they spent June and July calling him "typical."
So hard to choose. I kind of like all the attacks, because they successfully make Obama appear to be all things to all people. Is Obama too elite or too typical? Is he too stubborn or too flexible? Is he too extreme or too moderate? Does he engage the rest of the world too much or too little? Like the McCain campaign, I say, take your pick. Obama can be whoever you want him to be, and so he should appeal to all types.


Maybe that isn't what the McCain campaign is arguing, but it is so hard to tell that it is anyone's guess. The biggest flip-flops in this campaign are the attacks that McCain makes.

Obama Leads with Latinos

Both candidates have been courting the latino vote and McCain had been banking on the it, but apparently he is losing that bloc by a 66-22 margin. Ouch...

Obama in Berlin

Obama gave an excellent speech in Berlin that brings to mind Kennedy and Reagan. The loud cheers of USA! USA! from the German crowd made me feel great and offered perhaps a glipse of what Obama would do to improve America's image abroad. Maybe the world can forgive us for Bush. Maybe. McCain tried to take a swipe at Obama, but it just doesn't seem to be making much of an impact. In a pitiful attempt at competing for media time McCain went to three US city's named Berlin, falsely announced his VP choice twice and decided to eat in a German restaurant. Weak. McCain did say that he "wished he got to go on a trip abroad". He has many times and no one cared. The best for McCain to do would have been to lay low this week, not whine and give the Media another reason to label him. Too bad.

Here are some images of the event.











The line I loved the most "I am coming to you not as a presidential candidate, but as a citizen of the world" will probably get him the most heat. Incredible to those of us who realize that there is a world that we have to work with beyond our borders.

And McCain went to a grocery store.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Biased?

Apparently, Morning Joe and all these jokers once thought that McCain was getting a free ride as well. Suck it up, McCain.

McCain Loves Shopping

McCain is complaining some more about the coverage he's getting compared to Obama. Maybe it's that the images and video's that are coming from the McCain camp are just a little less impressive.

From CNN today: McCain visits a grocery store and gives a speech in front of deli meats.

McCain has had more favorabale media coverage than any public figure in the past thirty years. Get real. You are touring a grocery store while Obama is arm in arm with the rest of world, and you are demanding equal reporting. What is more interesting and are they even comparable?

McCain is Dirty

This Kos entry has got it all right. It's a must, so check it out.

This week is a homerun for Obama. I bet McCain wishes he hadn't taunted Obama so much to go abroad. Whoops!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Fox is a Joke

I love watching Fox complain.



I can't believe Sean Hannity made the claim that "People will look back at 2008 as the year American journalism died." Sorry, pal. That happened in 2000. You were a reason for it.

Richard Lewis on the GOP

Always funny...

McCain and the Learning Curve

Don't worry McCain. The Media still loves you.

Democratic Convention Highlights and News

The DNCC is coming up and there is all sorts of speculation swirling around the record breaking event.

From Husted:

The Dems are coming! The Dems are coming! But where are they going to stay?

Barack Obama likes the gated Englewood manse of Level 3 CEO James Crowe. So we hear that's Obama-ville during the DNC - together with hotel suites for making deals and spinning wheels.

Hillary and Bill Clinton are booked into the Brown Palace. That's where Oprah is trying to stay. I had heard that she was renting a house in Country Club - but she was sniffing around the Brown last week.

The Kennedy clan needs a house - if you're brave.

The Temptations will play three nights at a mansion near First Avenue and Humboldt Street for some big Hollywood parties.

People say all the U.S. senators will be sleeping at JW Marriott at Cherry Creek - but that sounds iffy for security reasons alone. NBC is having a big party across the street at Prime 121.

Scheduled parties are mounting up fast - already at 400-plus. Host committee honcho Steve Farber says the roster could grow from 700 to 1,000. He's busy keeping track of his own: a welcome party hosted by Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck on Aug. 24 at the Denver Art Museum. And the law firm has booked a private room for every night of the convention at the Capital Grille. Fifty or so people will meet with players such as New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson, mayors of big cities and others too important mention.

Dave's here.

In other DNC developments, Dave Matthews' people at the Mile High Music Festival on Sunday told insiders that the band was not currently signed to perform at the Aug. 24 Green Rocks Concert at Red Rocks with Sheryl Crow and Earth, Wind & Fire.


Besides where everyone is sleeping, it looks like it will be a kick-ass week. I wish I could head over to Denver and rock it with them all. Imagine if the Temptations and Dave both played on top of the already confirmed highlights. Springsteen will be in there area and is taking a curious week off that well. Bono will also be in town, but I doubt he'll get his head out of his ass long enough to play.

Who do you want to play there? I think it would be appropriate for Will.i.am (sp?) to play since he did write Obama's most popular Youtube song, "Yes, We Can."

McCain is a Whiner

It's been a pretty busy political day, so I think I'll give you a more brief breakdown today. I'm pretty busy these days with my move and am growing tired of writing how much McCain flips on every issue and then does the Bushco denial.

I'll let others do the work for me today.

First Headline: McCain Says Obama Wants to Lose in Iraq

McCain came out with that particulary tacky remark today.

"It seems to me that Senator Obama would rather lose a war in order to win a political campaign."


Vets are not happy.

As a veteran of a fifteen-month combat tour in Iraq at the height of the surge, it is incredibly offensive to see John McCain make off color remarks about Senator Obama's view on Iraq, claiming he "wants to lose" there. By bolstering his political rhetoric, he forgets that many veterans of the war in Iraq would like to see a reallocation of forces to Afghanistan to combat genuine threats to our national security. Would John McCain be so cavalier to say that I want to lose in Iraq, a place where many of my friends left their lives and limbs?

Alex Horton
Austin, TX
Iraq veteran
Army
2006-07

Senator McCain's comments represent the radical anti-troop, anti-veteran rhetoric his campaign has become known for. I went to combat, and I saw first-hand the damage the failed policies of George W. Bush and John McCain have caused to our American troops. I wonder if this eye-witness knowledge means that I want to lose as well.

Richard Smith
Huntsville, AL
Afghanistan veteran
Army
2007-08


For more, check out Vet Voice

Second Headline: Chris Matthews Asks Voters to Vote for Obama

Well, he actually said "open your hearts" and "don't think about race".



Here's the video link.

Third Headline: McCain Continues to Copy Obama

From Kos,

"In fact, confused McCain surrogate Heather Wilson in a conference call seemed to claim her man might do Obama even better, bringing the troops home in less than 16 months--but she back-pedaled a bit on that later in the call, with McCain foreign policy advisor Randy Scheunemann returning to serious vagueness under eager questioning.

But as we all know, when Obama says it, he's wrong, McCain is right, and hey, look over there, gas prices are high because of Obama and please ignore the fact that I'm making shit up!

And now rumors are starting that Obama's tour of the war region is so chewing up media attention that the McCain campaign is flirting with the idea of naming its vice presidential choice this week in order to steal some of Obama's thunder. (The best commentary spotted thus far on McCain VP choices has got to be Josh Marshall's observation about Fred Thompson: "But a combined age of 140 during the first year of office is probably unconstitutional.")

Guess that taunting of Obama for not visiting Iraq isn't quite working out as expected, eh? Of all the observers of Obama's tour thus far, few capture the blockheadedness of the McCain camp's urging the Democratic presidential candidate's taking of this trip quite as well as Dave Weigel at Reason:"


Dave Weigel from Reason:

I don't see any of this redounding to the benefit of John McCain. McCain's goading Obama to make this trip stands tall and proud as one of the dumbest blunders of the campaign. He couldn't have helped the Democrat more if he'd challenged him to a slam dunk contest.


Another day. Another resounding win for Obama and another pitiful loss for McCain.

My question: There are reports that St. McCain is whining about Obama getting more coverage than he is from the media and that he will announce his VP choice this week. Do you think that this will distract from Obama's super high-profile world tour? I don't AT ALL!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

McCain Outspends Obama

McCain has been outspending Obama in nearly every swing state, yet those states are continuing to give Obama better and better numbers. In fact, GOP safe havens such as Alaska and Georgia are proving to be toss-up states. The fact that McCain is clogging the key state airwaves and the numbers are still turning against him is not a good sign.

From what I can gather, McCain is producing an anti-Obama ad every three or four days. At that rate and the amount of air time that he is buying (and wasting), he is putting all of his money in swing states that might not even go for him.

This is how I see it at this point and I think that Obama will carry VA, but I won't include it here.

Obama: 288 (WA, OR, CA, CO, MN, IA, WS, IL, MI, OH, PA, MD, DE, NJ, CT, MA, NY, MA, VT, NH, RI, ME, HI)

McCain: 164 (MT, ID, WY, UT, ND, SD, KS, OK, TX, AR, LA, IN, KY, TN, MS, AL, GA, SC, WV, AK)

Up for Grabs: 86 (NV, AZ, NM, MO, VA, FL, NC)

Go to this site for your opinion and let me know.

Monday, July 21, 2008

The Translation: Maliki hearts Obama

You gotta give credit for Bushco trying to treat the international media the same way they do at home: let something slip, claim it was taken out of context or misunderstood and then change the entire story. Unfortunelty, there are real journalists in the international media. A fact that Bushco did not anticipate.

The NYT reports,

"...the interpreter for the interview works for Mr. Maliki’s office, not the magazine. And in an audio recording of Mr. Maliki’s interview that Der Spiegel provided to The New York Times, Mr. Maliki seemed to state a clear affinity for Mr. Obama’s position, bringing it up on his own in an answer to a general question on troop presence."


So, the "correction" that was being pushed by Washington suggested that it was a translator for the magazine who made the "unspecified" error. But it was a translator who works within the Malaki office who did the interview. The audio recording is there and Malaki clearly states,

"Obama’s remarks that — if he takes office — in 16 months he would withdraw the forces, we think that this period could increase or decrease a little, but that it could be suitable to end the presence of the forces in Iraq."


And I love this part.

"Who[ever] wants to exit in a quicker way has a better assessment of the situation in Iraq.”


Eat it Bush and McCain. For a GOP that is blaming McCain for not having a "theme" or any real strategy, this looks pretty bad for them. They tried to spin it, got caught BIG TIME and now we must wait and see how McCain will roll.

Obama, McCain and The Der Spiegel

I figured I would wait until the full media narratives set in and the Sunday morning talk shows had finished up before commenting on the Malaki statement essentially endorsing Obama and his plan to get out of Iraq.

First, The Der Spiegel (the same magazine that battled East Germany during the the division of Germany) ran this article where Iraqi Prime Minister al-Maliki seemed to endorse Obama's plan for withdrawal.

Here is some of the transcript.

SPIEGEL: How short-term? Are you hoping for a new agreement before the end of the Bush administration?

Maliki: So far the Americans have had trouble agreeing to a concrete timetable for withdrawal, because they feel it would appear tantamount to an admission of defeat. But that isn't the case at all. If we come to an agreement, it is not evidence of a defeat, but of a victory, of a severe blow we have inflicted on al-Qaida and the militias. The American lead negotiators realize this now, and that's why I expect to see an agreement taking shape even before the end of President Bush's term in office. With these negotiations, we will start the whole thing over again, on a clearer, better basis, because the first proposals were unacceptable to us.

SPIEGEL: Would you hazard a prediction as to when most of the US troops will finally leave Iraq?

Maliki: As soon as possible, as far as we're concerned. U.S. presidential candidate Barack Obama talks about 16 months. That, we think, would be the right time frame for a withdrawal, with the possibility of slight changes.

This was said and was accepted as truth for hours and hours and all the major US news outlets carried the story on their front page. Then, in a bizarre change of events, there was a claim that Malaki was misquoted and did not say any of that. What? The "correction" was submitted by an Iraqi official, however, when you look at where that "official" released this "correction", the story becomes a little trickier and a lot more deceptive.

"Dr. Ali al-Dabbagh, who the Times calls a spokesman for the Iraqi government, has released a statement saying that Prime Minister Maliki's statement was "misunderstood and mistranslated" and "not conveyed accurately regarding the vision of Senator Barack Obama, U.S. presidential candidate, on the time frame for U.S. forces withdrawal from Iraq." But as the Times notes al Dabbagh did not specify what had been mistranslated. Another interesting detail, noted by the Times. al-Dabbagh's statement was released by CentCom. I do not know how often Iraqi government statements are released by CentCom."


So, US Central Command is issuing official Iraqi government statements now? Bush tried to plant this seed and discredit the magazine, but they are standing firm. Here is their complete statement.

In the interview, Maliki expressed support of Obama's plan to withdraw US troops from Iraq within 16 months. "That, we think, would be the right time frame for a withdrawal, with the possibility of changes."

Maliki was quick to back away from an outright endorsement of Obama, saying "who they choose as their president is the Americans' business." But he then went on to say: "But it's the business of Iraqis to say what they want. And that's where the people and the government are in general agreement: The tenure of the coalition troops in Iraq should be limited."

A Baghdad government spokesman, Ali al-Dabbagh, said in a statement that SPIEGEL had "misunderstood and mistranslated" the Iraqi prime minister, but didn't point to where the misunderstanding or mistranslation might have occurred. Al-Dabbagh said Maliki's comments "should not be understood as support to any US presidential candidates." The statement was sent out by the press desk of the US-led Multinational Force in Iraq.

A number of media outlets likewise professed to being confused by the statement from Maliki's office. The New York Times pointed out that al-Dabbagh's statement "did not address a specific error." CBS likewise expressed disbelief pointing out that Maliki mentions a timeframe for withdrawal three times in the interview and then asks, "how likely is it that SPIEGEL mistranslated three separate comments? The Atlantic Monthly was astonished by "how little effort was made" to make the Baghdad denial convincing. And the influential blog IraqSlogger also pointed out the lack of specifics in the government statement.

SPIEGEL sticks to its version of the conversation.

Maliki's comments immediately hit the headlines of US papers and Web sites across the country, partly the result of a White House employee inadvertently sending out a news alert to its full media distribution list. The White House said it was an error and that it was meant to be sent internally only."


We can assume that since they have the entire transcript, they also have audio or maybe even a video of the interview. I would love to see the "Iraqi spokesman" clean that up. I can't believe that the White House made the Iraqi "clarification" come through its own military command (Central Command). Are they getting this brash that they can not even try to be subtle anymore?

This denial has forced Der Spiegel to release their full interview and now they're going to have every big news organization in the world hiring translators to check and see whether or not Der Spiegel was sloppy or the administration was lying... and judging from the CentCom's non-denial denial, it's easy to see who's going to come out the winner on this one. If there was any chance there was a mistake in the translation, the CentCom statement would have been a LOT less garbled and would have cited specific instances of misquote. But they didn't and that's because they knew they couldn't find anything.

I'm seriously shocked by how poorly the Bush administration is handling this. All they've done is made this into a MUCH bigger story than it would have been otherwise and set themselves up to look like lying fools...AGAIN.

Do not be fooled. This is a huge blow to McCain, Bush and the Iraqi governments susceptibility to Washington pressure and one that will be hard to spin. All Obama has to do is stick to the original narrative and refuse to back down. Expect the GOP to smear Germany and call the Der Spiegel communist or socialist or something else that fires up their base and the MSM.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Photohunt: Demise?

Obama's trip couldn't have started out any better for him and worse for McCain. With Obama's vision of foreign policy being realized (talks with Iran and Iraqi timetable) and McCain attempting to blur their policies in hopes that people will just forget all of his tough talk, I imagine we'll see this face a lot more in the near future.



Can you spot the edit?
Here's the original.

And here's the edited one.





Rules: You must clearly identify what I edited. It could be color, size, add-ons or anything, but it will only be one edit. I will keep a published tally and after six months, I will buy the winner a book of their choice or donate $25 bucks to the DNC. Also, please do not post as Anonymous. I can't reward your eye if I don't know who you are.



Running Tally:


Sid, USA - 3


Korea Beat, ROK - 1


Jeffery Hodges, ROK: 1


Thursday, July 17, 2008

2008 Jib Jab

Send a JibJab Sendables® eCard Today!

Barack Obama Wins the Election!

That's right. I called it and I did so because barring some HUGE and (I mean HUGE) catastrophe, McCain just won't be able to make up the numbers. I know it's July and I know the real dirty GOP stuff hasn't surfaced yet, but some recent polls seem to be suggesting that McCain has some serious issues.

From WaPo,

Registered Voters


Obama McCain
7/13/08 50 42
6/15/08 49 45
5/11/08 51 44
4/13/08 49 44
3/2/08 53 40
2/1/08 47 48
1/19/08 47 45


You can look at the trends and see that Obama has a strong lead with registered voters. This voting bloc in the most crucial and most certain to get out and vote. You could say that Kerry had the same numbers in 2004. Well, he did, but there's a huge difference.

For Obama Against McCain
7/13/08 All 80 18
7/13/08 RV 81 16

Compare to:

For Kerry Against Bush
9/8/04 RV 41 55
7/25/04 RV 41 56
6/20/04 All 44 55
6/20/04 RV 43 55
5/23/04 38 61
3/7/04 38 61

People were voting in huge numbers AGAINST Bush, rather than for Kerry. Not this time. Huge numbers for Obama and that's why these numbers are more significant than 2004.

Here is the kicker though. McCain's only strong point is that he claims to be the strongest Commander in Chief. Luckily for him, the people agree with him. From that same poll, 72% of people think that McCain would make a good C-i-C compared with only 48% who believe that with Obama. That is a heavy blow to McCain. People might think that he would be a better Commander in Chief, but most people seem to think that they would STILL prefer Obama to their President. Ouch. McCain appears to be in check.

Next interesting development is that only 34% believe we have to "win the war in Iraq in order for the broader war on terrorism to be a success" while 51% believe winning the war in Afghanistan is essential to winning to "broader war on terrorism. This means that the people have adopted the Dems logic on the war on terror. Again, this hurts McCain immensely as it softens his strong point.

Finally, the number one issue for the majority of Americans is the economy. The question is...

"If John McCain were elected President, do you think he would generally continue George Bush's economic policies or not?"

A staggering 63% of those polled said McCain would continue George Bush's economic policies. This is a fact that McCain has said numerous times in his efforts to keep those big GOP donors on board. So, why is this important. Well, maybe because of this question.

"Do you approve or disapprove of the way George Bush is handling the economy?"

The result: 20% of Americans approve while 71% disapprove.

It appears that McCain's 8 year love affair with Bush will prove to be his end and now all the Obama campaign has to do is be careful, firm and continue to link the two together.

Here it is: Obama wins in November.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

McCain's Economic Defense

Really? This is the best they could find?



This guy talks like a cartoon character.

The Right-Wing and The New Yorker

From what I can gather, it is bad to be a Muslim. In fact, it's the worst thing. In my previous post, I gathered some right-wing takes on the New Yorker article and it seems like the focus was one thing: Obama is a lying Muslim and being a Muslim is horrible.

It want to bring those back.

"For those who either can not read or care not to read, I refer you to the Koran and Shari'a. Of course Obama is a Muslim. The faith passes from father to son and the literature clearly says any person converting to another religion is an apostate to Islam and is subject to DEATH.You can not leave the Muslim faith without exposing yourself to retribution. And where do you think he went to school, a madrasa where Jews are pigs and Christians are traitors to the book. He obviously "converted" to Christ to enter politics. I seriously question his beliefs. Would it not be the heighth of insanity as we die in Irag and swear to protect Israel to elect a closet Muslim. America you are signing your own death warrent due to your ignorance. This cover may be more factual than we want to admit."

The factual errors are laughable, but let's look past that. This guys very literal acceptance of the Koran in this specific case makes Obama a Muslim. Let's accept this as is and ignore the fact that people can make choices. I would be very surprised if this guy disagreed that people should be free to practice religion as those choose, but that's not the issue. So, I can only assume that this guy distrusts all Muslims and thinks that the entire religion is out to get America.

"Hussein Obama was born a Muslim. The child of a Muslim man, at birth is a Muslim. The child of a Jewish woman, at birth, is a Jew. Barack is Lying to America when he said he has never been a Muslim! "I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Miss Lewinski!" Bill Clinton "I did not inhale!" Bill Clinton "I did not swallow!" Monica Lewinski "I have never been a Muslim!" Barack Hussein Obama."


Again, the issue here is utter distrust of Muslims. They can not prove that Obama was at any point a Muslim, so they throw in all this extra stuff to pad their comments. This guy also hates Dems. At what point did it become awful to be a Muslim? I can't deny that I knew that a lot of people (Americans) hated ALL MUSLIMS because of 911, but this is an attempt to go out of ones way to show distaste for the religion while forcing oneself to believe that Obama is a Muslim. We have seen countless pundits, scholars, politicians and activists time and time again attempt to plea to people to make the distinction between what is happening in Iraq and Afghanistan and what the moderates of the religion practice.

So, I guess...my question: Has this war and its subsequent increase in racial tension really turned a possibly large segment of Americans into openly and publicly demonstrative racists?

Is this what we have come to?

Image of the Week: Satirizing the Smear



I don't think that I need to go into detail as to what the New Yorker was trying to convey here and, just like most the the New Yorker readership, I wasn't even terribly offended. I think it accurately depicted the absurdity of what the GOP is doing to win this election. However, the readers of the New Yorker are nowhere near the voting bloc that will fail to see beyond the racist, religious and sexist stereotype and that doesn't even include the "coverage" that the Media will give this. I think the best way to get a feeling for the effect that this tasteless caricature might have is to scour the internet to find the reactions from all sides.

Here is what the cover artist Bill Britt said.

"I think the idea that the Obamas are branded as unpatriotic [let alone as terrorists] in certain sectors is preposterous. It seemed to me that depicting the concept would show it as the fear-mongering ridiculousness that it is."


"It seemed to him", huh? We get it Bill, but you should have had the forethought to see the shitstorm that this kind of cover would provoke.

And here's Bill Burton of the Obama camp...

“The New Yorker may think, as one of their staff explained to us, that their cover is a satirical lampoon of the caricature Senator Obama's right-wing critics have tried to create. But most readers will see it as tasteless and offensive. And we agree."


McCain camp says...

"We completely agree with the Obama campaign, it’s tasteless and offensive.”


We couldn't expect much else though could we? Obama probably wants to ignore this issue just as much as McCain, but don't think that McCain is not tucking away his pedophile grin as another major outlet goes to bat for him.

How about the news media?

CNN offers this.



And Fox.



She really thought that they should "laugh at it"? Right. She misses the point all the way around and says that he shouldn't be so sensitive and then they compare it to Bush dressed like a maid. For a woman, I would think that she would realize that it's not so easy to just laugh it off. Did she say that when Hillary was the victim of vicious sexism during the primary?

And here are a couple right-wing comments.

"For those who either can not read or care not to read, I refer you to the Koran and Shari'a. Of course Obama is a Muslim. The faith passes from father to son and the literature clearly says any person converting to another religion is an apostate to Islam and is subject to DEATH.You can not leave the Muslim faith without exposing yourself to retribution. And where do you think he went to school, a madrasa where Jews are pigs and Christians are traitors to the book. He obviously "converted" to Christ to enter politics. I seriously question his beliefs. Would it not be the heighth of insanity as we die in Irag and swear to protect Israel to elect a closet Muslim. America you are signing your own death warrent due to your ignorance. This cover may be more factual than we want to admit."


"Hey, all you Montessori schooled, children of single mothers,Liberal crybabies. How does it FEEL when someone disrespectfully mocks YOUR "Great White, umm, I mean Black Hope"? Like you haven't been continuously disrespectful to our sitting president for 8 years, right? Kiss our well fed Conservative butts, you sniveling, ill spawned products of drunken trysts between gender confused, stoned feminists and dull witted, semi-literate Irish bartenders and folk singers."


"Hussein Obama was born a Muslim. The child of a Muslim man, at birth is a Muslim. The child of a Jewish woman, at birth, is a Jew. Barack is Lying to America when he said he has never been a Muslim! "I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Miss Lewinski!" Bill Clinton "I did not inhale!" Bill Clinton "I did not swallow!" Monica Lewinski "I have never been a Muslim!" Barack Hussein Obama."


There voters were already decided and sure that Obama was a muslim and anti-everything-that-America stands for, so no loss here.

And the left...

"As much as the cover itself bothers me, I'm almost more concerned about the number of people here at dKos who are unable or unwilling to see WHY it's a problem.
The people who argue until they're blue in the face that "It's satire! It's the New Yorker! They're Obama-friendly! Relax! Chill out! I wanted to scream last night when I kept reading that "The only people who will see it are New Yorker readers who 'get' the magazine's intent. Right, because in the months leading up to a Presidential election any magazine cover with one of the candidates on it gets no media attention whatsoever. How's that idea working out?"


It is the disrespect that they show to him as minority that offends me. They would NEVER do this crap to a white candidate. if you think they would then why have i not seen cartoon of...

Mccain and his wives fighting
Cindy popping pills
Mccain trying to blow up Iran and Iraq
POW mccain giving American secrets in Vietnam


"On my lunch break I am canceling my subscription. Like others, I will send the extra money to the Obama campaign."



This won't make a difference:

Anyone who understands this type of "humor" will get it and just laugh and move on. It won't really effect their voting decision one way or the other since they are probably discerning enough to have made up their minds about the election, using partisan reasoning. The comments above suggest that there will be no shift in voting. CNN is appalled, while Fox brings in jokers who think that Obama shouldn't be so sensitive. I don't think this is will have much of an effect and it will be gone in a week. Still, many more people will see the cover, not read the article, and will take the cartoon as a message of facts. Again, those "facts" are not going to change any minds, only make them more stubborn.

For what it's worth, I donated again to BO.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Obama Fires Back

Apparently Obama understands the need to make things as clear as possible for the sound-biting, faux-news reporting, McCain narrative driving Media. After a week of fielding absurd questions about his Iraq stance and having to defend one of the most ridiculous attacks of this season, he decided to put it in writing in the NYT for all those out there who are still whining. Of course, most of those who claim that Obama flopped can't read and only watch talking heads spew garbage about the size of their manhood rather than listen to a solid and strong position.

He starts out pretty much giving his typical stump.

"THE call by Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki for a timetable for the removal of American troops from Iraq presents an enormous opportunity. We should seize this moment to begin the phased redeployment of combat troops that I have long advocated, and that is needed for long-term success in Iraq and the security interests of the United States. The differences on Iraq in this campaign are deep. Unlike Senator John McCain, I opposed the war in Iraq before it began, and would end it as president. I believed it was a grave mistake to allow ourselves to be distracted from the fight against Al Qaeda and the Taliban by invading a country that posed no imminent threat and had nothing to do with the 9/11 attacks. Since then, more than 4,000 Americans have died and we have spent nearly $1 trillion. Our military is overstretched. Nearly every threat we face — from Afghanistan to Al Qaeda to Iran — has grown."


We know this stuff and it's shocking that he STILL has to remind people of it. Then again, McCain is slowly fading into the same Alzheimer induced path that his lover Reagan quietly drifted into.

"In the 18 months since President Bush announced the surge, our troops have performed heroically in bringing down the level of violence. New tactics have protected the Iraqi population, and the Sunni tribes have rejected Al Qaeda — greatly weakening its effectiveness. But the same factors that led me to oppose the surge still hold true. The strain on our military has grown, the situation in Afghanistan has deteriorated and we’ve spent nearly $200 billion more in Iraq than we had budgeted. Iraq’s leaders have failed to invest tens of billions of dollars in oil revenues in rebuilding their own country, and they have not reached the political accommodation that was the stated purpose of the surge."


He lays out his clear opposition to the surge not by condemning some of it's successes, but by saying what a crutch it has been to the Iraqi's and what a detriment it has been to our military.


"The good news is that Iraq’s leaders want to take responsibility for their country by negotiating a timetable for the removal of American troops. Meanwhile, Lt. Gen. James Dubik, the American officer in charge of training Iraq’s security forces, estimates that the Iraqi Army and police will be ready to assume responsibility for security in 2009. Only by redeploying our troops can we press the Iraqis to reach comprehensive political accommodation and achieve a successful transition to Iraqis’ taking responsibility for the security and stability of their country. Instead of seizing the moment and encouraging Iraqis to step up, the Bush administration and Senator McCain are refusing to embrace this transition — despite their previous commitments to respect the will of Iraq’s sovereign government. They call any timetable for the removal of American troops “surrender,” even though we would be turning Iraq over to a sovereign Iraqi government."

He's right on target here. Move our troops out, let NATO troops keep the peace if needed and take care of our real business where it is needed. He is not allowing McCain and his Media push the McCain narrative that leaving is equatable to surrender. McCain has got to let his Vietnam-era Domino Effect dribble go and realize that the world has changed and there is no room for his dated leadership.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Photohunt: Running of the Bulls

This weeks "Photohunt" features what I think is a wonderful cultural icon and one that I hope NEVER to participate in. Only one man was gorged and dozens hospitalized in this years run, so that's good, but I wonder: If you do run, is it more impressive to have escaped without injury or to have been caught and survived?

Can you spot the edit?

Here's the original




And here's the edited one.


Rules: You must clearly identify what I edited. It could be color, size, add-ons or anything, but it will only be one edit. I will keep a published tally and after six months, I will buy the winner a book of their choice or donate $25 bucks to the DNC. Also, please do not post as Anonymous. I can't reward your eye if I don't know who you are.

Running Tally:

Sid, USA - 1
Korea Beat, ROK - 1
Jeffery Hodges, ROK: 1

Friday, July 11, 2008

Never thought about this, huh?

Hahaha! Just watch McCain.

Lazy Links

By the end of the week, I'm usually politically drained and today is no different. So, I'm going to be lazy and offer you no insight, only links and a tease.

Here are some stark differences between McCain and Obama on women's issues. From The Guardian

"Obama makes similar remarks, but the two differ sharply on their approach to several key issues. Obama would require employers to expand family and medical leave, for example, while McCain said Thursday it should ``be subject to negotiations between management and labor."

Teddy Kennedy is proving that he is truly the Lion on the Senate. From the NYT

"Mr. Kennedy, Democrat of Massachusetts, flown in virtual secrecy to Washington, stirred the normally staid chamber to a rousing ovation and moved many colleagues to tears when he made a surprise appearance in the Senate in the late afternoon to break a Republican filibuster on a Medicare bill."

Pew has got a good one on turnout.

"The outlook for the presidential election at mid-year is substantially different than at comparable points in time in recent campaigns. First, turnout is likely to be higher this fall - perhaps much higher than in previous
elections - as voter interest continues at record levels. Second, as has been the case since the start of the campaign, Democrats enjoy a substantial engagement advantage over Republicans that may significantly alter the composition of the November electorate."

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Is Obama leaning towards Clinton?

The Media seems to think that this could perhaps be suggesting that Obama is leaning towards Clinton as his running mate. I would be fine with that as I think that the Media might have burnt any chance Wes Clark had by inaccurately reporting his comments about McCain.

"Barack Obama stoked vice presidential speculation Wednesday with an unannounced stop at the Washington law firm of a search team member and then a flight to New York fundraisers with potential pick Hillary Rodham Clinton and a second vetter. I'm not going to tell you" any details, the smiling likely Democratic nominee told reporters after spending more than two hours inside a downtown Washington office building where attorney Eric Holder, a member of his vice presidential search committee, has offices."
The Media narrative now is that Obama is moving to the center. He is. The Media is, of course, ignoring the fact that every single nominee moves to the center after a very partisan primary. Don't be fooled. Regardless of the truth, in politics perception is everything and oftentimes supercedes the truth. Today Obama voted for immunity for the telecom companies on the wiretapping vote which is under FISA. I am upset that he did this, but he is being caustious so as not to be branded "soft on terrorism". Again, I'm pretty upset with him over this, but it is in no way a deal breaker for me, nor should it be for any Dem. Luckily, Hillary voted against it along with 28 other Senators. This vote will hurt him a little, but he is banking on the fact that the liberal voting bloc will support him way before jumping to McCain. He's probably right, but it's a risk.

If he throws Hillary on the ticket, it will balance it out enough to appease the voters. But more than that, she will keep him on a more liberal track. He might need this while getting settled in the White House.

My question: Is Obama is waiting to reveal his VP choice later in the summer so that he can get a bounce AFTER the GOP and the Media has used up a lot of their ammo? OR is he waiting to see what the ammo is and then pick accordingly?

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Classic O'Reilly

I would usually reserve this for my Musings, I just couldn't resist.

Iraq Deals a Blow to McCain

Here is that Hardball interview that I mentioned earlier.

Here is part 1.



Here is part 2.



I have been pretty proud of Matthews since the primary season ended. He does not let people waffle around. This guy Pete is a douche. I can't believe that he's spinning this as a pro-McCain development. That simply will not work.

Obama's Time to Pounce on McCain

Now that Iraq wants the US out, I guess we can start watching the McCain campaign get very squeamish as this is in direct conflict with the Korea-style occupation that both Bush and McCain envisioned. I saw the McCain shill group "Vets for Freedom" on Hardball claiming that this is a victory for McCain and it has only happened because the surge worked, which was solely his idea.

I think that McCain may be setting up a fall campaign strategy of adopting more or less Obama's position on Iraq, but with a different tone. He will be claiming that his withdrawal is based on "victory" through the surge, while Obama's withdrawal is based on "surrender". Essentially, he will be blurring the lines of their respective Iraq policy. I'm certain that the majority of the media will go with McCain's narrative. That may be why McCain's people pressed the media on Obama's Iraq statements so hard, because they are planning to sell "pulling out troops based on victory, which may be as early as a couple years," while condemning Obama for a "hardline 16 month withdrawal based on defeat". Obama's statement on refinement of the timetable is cutting into their coming Iraq shift.

This is a key time for Obama to pounce on McCain's judgement. He can really make him look like an out-of-touch Domino Effect leader that doesn't get how the world works now. The timing for Obama's Iraq trip is perfect as well.

My question: If Obama pounces first, will the media go with his narrative like they did with McCain's on Obama's Iraq policy or will they play defense for McCain? You know what I think.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Useless Polls

This is a particularly useless one. Apparently pet owners prefer McCain to Obama (42-37). I'm so glad that pollsters are taking the time to put this info out there, so the voters can truly make an educated decision as to who they support. There is not even a decent quote to post here, but I'll give you the best I could find.

"Richard Powell, 79, of Spokane, Wash., whose dog passed away last fall, said if a person owns a pet that "tells you that they're responsible at least for something, for the care of something."


Yeah, I guess he's right. Obama probably isn't responsible for anything. I'm convinced now. Sorry Obama, I guess I have to support McCain now. He must be a more compassionate person like Bush who has two terriers. I am a little confused as to why to article only mentioned that Obama doesn't have any pets, yet it doesn't say anything about McCain's pets. Any help? Does he have pets? I bet he has a few scattered about somewhere around his ten homes.

Is McCain even getting a free ride from unknown pollsters? Useless dribble...

Image of the Week: Facebooking Obama

Chris Hughes, a co-founder of Facebook, has been the man behind Obama's Internet success and netroots-driven campaign. He helped bring that connectivity from the computer screen to the real world. As I mentioned yesterday, the Obama campaign has broken the barrier that separates the candidate from the voter and is paving the way for the future of politcal campaigning.

Here's Hughes in the Chicago headquarters.

NYT's has an excellent read on how this guy has done it and what it means for Obama. It's short. Read it.

"I Can't Believe I'm Losing to This Guy."

That is from the famed SNL Dukakis/Bush skit in the '88 election.

Will the media spin McCain's poor skills as an orator to his advantage by making him seem like he's just a regular guy? Will they actually try to use Obama's gift as a great speaker against him? Yes, they will.

I remember the last time they spun this story. We got George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush.

“I have set before the American people an energy plan, the Lex-eegton Project,” Mr. McCain said, drawing a quick breath and correcting himself. “The Lex-ing-ton Proj-ect,” he said slowly. “The Lexington Project,” he repeated. “Remember that name." In a town meeting in Cincinnati the next day, Mr. McCain would again slip up on the name of the Massachusetts town, where, he noted, “Americans asserted their independence once before.” He called it “the Lexiggdon Project” and twice tried to fix his error before flipping the name (“Project Lexington”) in subsequent references. "

Put that on top of his hand jabs and horribly uncomfortable smile and you have someone that is actually much worse than Bush.

Which brings me to what I imagine the debates to be.

Sam Donaldson (Kevin Nealon): Do you really think SDI, or Star Wars, will work? Do you really think it's possible to create a shield that would prevent any or all nuclear missiles from striking the United States?

George Bush (Dana Carvey): I'm glad you asked me that, Sam.. because tonight I can reveal something that's just been declassified. The key to SDI, to the whole concept, is a Time Machine. It's a beautiful idea. Let's say the Soviets launch a surprise attack, and a few of their missiles do get through our floating network of particle beam lasers. Then we use the Time Machine. We go back in time, before the surprise attack. It's defensive, it's clean, and it'll save our kids in the event of a Russian first strike. Now, who could be against that?

Diane Sawyer (Jan Hooks): Governor Dukakis?

Michael Dukakis (Jon Lovitz): Well, if such a Time Machine were possible, I'd like the vice-president to explain why we haven't been visited already by time travelers from the future. You can't tell me that responsible members of a future government of the United States wouldn't, with access to a Time Machine, come back to reverse some of the mistakes - cockamamie mistakes - made by this administration. Of course they would! This idea is ridiculous! Spending billions and billions on a Time Machine whose very existence defies logic is, in my mind, lunacy.

George Bush: Well, Mr. Massachusettes, Harvard Yard Braniac. You may prove to yourself that it's impossible, but I think I'm like most Americans who'd rather see a Time Machine with an American flag on the side, and not a hammer and sickle.

[ the audience applauds ]

I could go on. If you want to read the whole transcript then click here.

McCain v. Maliki

Well this would certainly shut McCain up. He wouldn't have a thing to offer if this is realized by the Iraqi's. Of course, McCain and the GOP will try to pressure them into allowing the US to stay there and continue to gain control of the region and its resources.

"Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki raised the prospect on Monday of setting a timetable for the withdrawal of U.S. troops as part of negotiations over a new security agreement with Washington. It was the first time the U.S.-backed Shi'ite-led government has floated the idea of a timetable for the removal of American forces from Iraq. The Bush administration has always opposed such a move, saying it would give militant groups an advantage."
The Bush administration does not have a say in this. Bush propped this government up and championed the purple fingers, so he has given up his say all around. And what will McCain do? He's the one that wants Iraq to be like Korea or Japan. Again, it does not matter what McCain wants. Iraq is a sovereign nation with an occupying force who, if asked, must leave or face serious repercussions from the international community.
"Today, we are looking at the necessity of terminating the foreign presence on Iraqi lands and restoring full sovereignty," Maliki told Arab ambassadors in blunt remarks during an official visit to Abu Dhabi, capital of the United Arab Emirates."
This is the test for the GOP. Do they really want to "finish the job" and make sure that Iraq is democratic or do they just want to gain total and unchallenged geopolitical control of the resource-rich Middle East? This will be their test and if Iraq chooses to be allies with Iran, than that is their choice to make, not ours.

NBRA

I came across this video on Youtube and it infuriated me to the point that I had to write about it and see what in the hell these jokers were up to. First, take a look at the video.



It's almost like they are trying to sound like they are joking. Regardless of the false accusations of current racism and how they mount their weak case based solely on loose historical rumors, it is clear how off they are when they wrote this piece half-way through the primary season.


"Four times Democratic Party primary voters had a chance to select a black person as their party's nominee for president. Each time the Democrats turned their backs on the black presidential candidates: Shirley Chisholm who became the first black and the first woman to run for president in 1972; US Senator Carol Moseley Braun; Rev. Jesse Jackson; and Rev. Al Sharpton. Now the Democrats have another chance. It’s obvious, though, judging from recent polls, that the Democratic Party primary voters will choose yet another white person, Senator Hillary Clinton, over black Senator Barack Obama (the son of a white American woman and a man from Kenya) to be the Democratic Party’s presidential nominee. To make matters even worse, the Democrats are trying to derail Obama's candidacy by demeaning him as a "Magic Negro," using that racist term in a Los Angeles Times article entitled: Obama the "Magic Negro".


Check out their site and read some of the other filth.

Obama and the Convention

Obama has run an amazing campaign that does a few things that most politicians have never dreamed of. First, he's been able to make people feel connected to him through small, but numerous donations. By asking for small donations, people will donate several times and each time they will feel closer to him. Typically and like McCain is doing, they are looking for the 2,400 limit donation and then they're done with you. The second prong of the strategy comes from "Obama the celebrity". You donate to him and then you see him on stage with thousands of adoring fans and he is talking about the small donations that you gave to "your" campaign. He has such high enthusiasm because of this heightened level of connectivity.

And now, he is topping it all off with what I'm sure will be an amazing event.

"Breaking the mold of traditional political Conventions, the Democratic National Convention Committee (DNCC) today announced that Senator Barack Obama will accept the Democratic nomination for President of the United States at Denver’s INVESCO Field at Mile High. INVESCO Field can accommodate more than 75,000 people and will be the site of the 2008 Democratic Convention’s final day of programming on Thursday, August 28, 2008."
This is genius for so many reasons.

1) He can stay in tune with his change meme.

2) He opens the doors to the general public. In fact, check out this email that I received today.

George --

I wanted you to be the first to hear the news.

At the Democratic National Convention next month, we're going to kick off the general election with an event that opens up the political process the same way we've opened it up throughout this campaign.

Barack has made it clear that this is your convention, not his.

On Thursday, August 28th, he's scheduled to formally accept the Democratic nomination in a speech at the convention hall in front of the assembled delegates.

Instead, Barack will leave the convention hall and join more than 75,000 people for a huge, free, open-air event where he will deliver his acceptance speech to the American people.

It's going to be an amazing event, and Barack would like you to join him. Free tickets will become available as the date approaches, but we've reserved a special place for a few of the people who brought us this far and who continue to drive this campaign.

If you make a donation of $5 or more between now and midnight on July 31st, you could be one of 10 supporters chosen to fly to Denver and spend two days and nights at the convention, meet Barack backstage, and watch his acceptance speech in person. Each of the ten supporters who are selected will be able to bring one guest to join them.

Make a donation now and you could have a front row seat to history:

https://donate.barackobama.com/yourconvention

We'll follow up with more details on this and other convention activities as we get closer, but please take a moment and pass this note to someone you know who might like to be there.

It will be an event you'll never forget.

Thank you,

David

David Plouffe
Campaign Manager
Obama for America


The lure of this email was quite impressive. This guy knows how to appeal to people and he's only increasing his connectivity.

3) This will allow for some serious rockers. I assume Springsteen, Bon Jovi and Stevie Wonder will be there along with many others.

4) It will completely crush the GOP convention. People will see this in all it's magnitude and then watch creepy old McCain stumble over a few lines and give that creepy pedophile smile at the tightly enforced, unenthusiastic, anti-free speech GOP convention.

This whole campaign has been a graduate course in how to win run a campaign.

Why is that offensive?



What was threatening about this librarian? And since McCain decided to have her thrown out, her mild protest would have gone unnoticed, but now it's on Youtube and making its rounds. For the record, this was a public event and open to the public. I think she makes a great point at the end to: Why is that offensive?
Expect this to happen more and more.

Monday, July 07, 2008

"Never Challenge the Senator"

I do not live in the United States. I have do not have the whole picture as to what narrative the pundits and talking heads are pushing. Or maybe I should say, I don't know HOW MUCH they are pushing a particular narrative. I am sure I am missing a lot in my perhaps mediocre attempts in explaining what is happening in the madhouse that is the American political theater. Still, I try.

And it appears that it is clear what direction the media is going to go in this election. Like 2000, 2002, 2004 and now 2008, the media is following the narrative of the GOP. They are reporting McCain's opinion and campaign themes like it is factual news and hitting Obama on every issue. Unlike Obama, I am not "puzzled" in the least by what we are seeing. In a race where Obama leads by 6-10 points and is remaining static amidst all of these absurd accusations, CNN likes to report that it is a "statistical dead heat". As I have explained here, the media is going to do whatever they can to create the facade of a close race and how better to do that than reporting McCain Talking Points as if they were confirmed fact. They are going to pursue any line of attack on Obama in a false and immensely unethical line of faux-journalism where fact is a distant second to manufactured dribble.

This past week and already again this week, the focus was all on Obama. Luckily, he had to wisdom to call that second press conference late on Thursday because he did not want the weekend news to be dominated by the assertion that he was changing him mind of Iraq. Refinement does not equate to change. Refinement makes something even better and since Obama has a solid take on Iraq, I can only imagine how much better it is going to be.

But I wonder: What was the media reporting about St. McCain? Well, they decided to report on his brand new aircraft. In fact, I have seen on every major network a detailed description of the inside and out of this reminder of how in-touch McCain really is. They reported on what it looks like, but did they report this?

"[McCain is] very open to people. You can come on the bus, everything is great but if he knows or if his team knows that you have a hostile line of questioning or you have a long and well documented critique, they’re not going to talk to you. […]
As a human, he’s haunted by the notion of honesty and about honor and truth. He wishes that he could speak the truth all the time. He doesn’t. I don’t think he speaks the truth any more than any other politician really, no more, no less."
He won't talk to people if they have a "hostile line of questioning or you have a long and well documented critique"? The similarities between Bush and McCain are chilling, but more importantly, how is any member of the press sleeping on this issue? Ride-along biographer Matt Welch said that right after he revealed the Golden Rule on the "Straight Talk Express".

"Never challenge the Senator."
McCain senior aide Mark Salter said that there is a special VIP area on board the plane. Who gets to sit there?

"Only the good reporters" would get to sit in the specially-configured section for interviews. "You'll have to earn it," he said."
So, you have to earn it? And that means you have to agree with McCain and push his opinion as fact while making sure the the entire Media follows this narrative. If the MSM wants to at least pretend to have some sort of integrity, the story should have been closer to this.

"Presumptive Republican nominee John McCain, upgraded to the Boeing 737-400 after deciding the image of an "elitist" was safely burned into opponent Barack Obama. The new plane features a couch and two captain's chairs, along with an area where cameras can film him. In the rear of the plane, however, is a private VIP area where, as we're told, is only for his close staffers and the journalists who have shown their ability to fluff every story, inject the phrase "Straight Talk" into every piece, feed the Senator, and most importantly, NEVER CHALLENGE THE SENATOR!"


Which one is more accurate?

Really though, the Media should have been concerned that he will not listen to criticism or take advice. Between what we just went through with Bush, McCain's documented temper and now his admitted inability to listen to anyone but himself, it seems that at least one red flag would have gone up somewhere.

My question: What narrative will the MSM go with this week?

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Photohunt: "Peace" in Iraq

This week's Photohunt features what is likely more to come propaganda-esque images out of Iraq. This one is showing how great Iraq must be because there is one child in the pool. I have looked at the entire album on CNN and there are more armed US GI's than children. I think I counted three children total to over nine soldiers. It's great that there is pool, but these images are serving political purposes. A heavily gaurded and essentailly empty swimming pool does not equate to much.

Can you spot the edit?
Here is the original.

And here is the edited one.

Rules: You must clearly identify what I edited. It could be color, size, add-ons or anything, but it will only be one edit. I will keep a published tally and after six months, I will buy the winner a book of their choice or donate $25 bucks to the DNC. Also, please do not post as Anonymous. I can't reward your eye if I don't know who you are.
Running Tally:
Sid - 1

Weekend Clip Roundup

Here's what I think you needed to watch.









You notice anything? That's right. St. McCain is getting that free ride that I feared he would get.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

The Effectiveness of the "Swift Boat"

The "Swift Boat" of 2004 was much more potent than the one in Vietnam and is proving to be more potent than the current 2008 version. I say the 2008 version, but I must qualify that designation. To be fair, there has not been a "Swift Boating" yet. A "Swift Boat" does not look anything like what this past week has produced. And furthermore, I think that the current state of the MSM and its somewhat hostile relationship with the increasingly relevant blogosphere is proof that there will be more oversight, more accuracy and perhaps even some elements of professional journalism. I said "perhaps".


This theory hinges on the assumption that the Media is torn as to who their true darling is and how much the left blogs can keep the Media, and therefore campaign reality, in check. We can already see the apprehensiveness in what and how the Media will report such smears. At the start of this Clark issue, they began as they usually do: Report an out-of-context clip that makes it seem like a below the belt shot was taken at their long-time darling, St. McCain. However, when Clark did not back down from the multi-fronted attack, the liberal blogs went into action and when others started agreeing with Clark, the Media was forced to look at how they reported the story and, in a slight instance of journalistic integrity, they started running the entire or at least more accurate story WITH context. This, with the exception of Fox News, is an indication of why the Swift Boat of 2008 isn't nearly as detrimental than the 2004 model. For it to work again, there has to be a complete lack of even minimal journalistic skills and a breakdown of the left blogosphere. I simply don't seeing either of those two conditions being met.

McCain has also limited himself insofar as that he condemned the 2004 Swifter's, but is now accepting their donations while at the same time demanding that Obama "cuts Clark loose". In effect, he has renounced and distanced himself from attacks that are deemed a "Swift Boat", so when his surrogates get ready to release The Case Against Barack Obama where will he stand? The last thing he needs (or just the thing that Obama needs) is to be further labeled a flip-flopper and especially not in this case where his ethics will be called into question.

While many pundits still have man-crushes on John McCain, I think that Obama's darling status rivals it well and will give us a glimpse into the Media's true role. It will get worse I'm sure, but we need to do our part to make sure that the Media does theirs.

A More Complete Picture

The Clark/Webb-related events of the past few days have opened a door and given the public a more complete idea of who McCain is and how he deals with people and unfriendly situations. As his experience was called into question by more senior military officials (something that has not been done publicly), we were given a picture of an aging, whiny man who is so arrogant that he expects and demands respect from everyone and if he doesn't get it, it leads to openly erratic behavior. Is John McCain sooo "delicate" that he can't take criticism even when it is accurate and well said? Does he have to rely on Fox and shallow expressions and claims of patriotism to bite back? Why can't he handle criticism? More importantly, how will he react when entire nations will be openly criticizing him, if he can't even handle it from a few individual people?

By reacting the way he has and certainly continuing it after Obama said, "Enough!" with the whole thing, McCain made the horrendous error of demanding that it was time to "cut Clark loose". Obama will do no such thing. Now, Obama has earned hand and McCain looks like a whiny old man. Having Clark and Webb highlighting these weaknesses in a backwards and illogical world where Obama can't because he didn't "serve", is just what Obama needs. McCain's reaction is a product of over a decade of favorable Media coverage, a lifetime of demanding his ass to be kissed and very little public criticism. Clark was dead-on when he suggested McCain was "untested", but now it also includes national public life.

Wait. I spoke to soon. He was "tested" by Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega on a diplomatic mission in 1987.

"McCain was down at the end of the table and we were talking to the head of the guerrilla group here at this end of the table and I don't know what attracted my attention," Cochran said in an interview with The Sun Herald in Biloxi, Miss. "But I saw some kind of quick movement at the bottom of the table and I looked down there and John had reached over and grabbed this guy by the shirt collar and had snatched him up like he was throwing him up out of the chair to tell him what he thought about him or whatever ...

"I don't know what he was telling him but I thought, 'Good grief, everybody around here has got guns and we were there on a diplomatic mission.' I don't know what had happened to provoke John, but he obviously got mad at the guy ... and he just reached over there and snatched ... him."
And that was on a diplomatic mission. McCain has to be the alpha male and bully in every situation and this is not what we need. We're just finishing up with a non-physical bully, and now McCain thinks we need more PLUS a little extra.

The bigger issue is not whether I think McCain is a sissy that can't hack it. I do and he can't. The once-hidden image of a hotheaded bully that rose in politics because of family connections and physical threats is back on the table and now that the majority of the MSM has openly displayed reluctance to let McCain off the hook and rail into Obama, he might be in some trouble.

My Question: We have already heard the word "Swift Boat" hundreds of times in the past few days and the sound of that raises hairs on the backs of Democratic voters because we know how slimy the GOP can be. However, the media has been heavily criticized this season and felt threatened by blogs, forums and youtube and have forced themselves to be slightly more objective. So will their fear of further criticism cause them to label all baseless smears as a "Swift Boat", therefore putting them to rest before they get to the point they did last election?