Saturday, July 26, 2008

Saturday Night House Party!

Got anywhere fun to go tonight? If not, don't sweat it! C4O is here for you, so we don't mind you hanging out at our place... Or even crashing our party!

So wazzup? Got any preference for dance music? Want a cocktail? Would you like to just tell me about your wild weekend? Go ahead... This isn't just an open thread, it's a damn good time!

Now that I've survived another Democratic training, I can hardly wait to do some more precinct walking... NEXT WEEK. Right now, I just want to grab my glass of Syrah & join all of you in the fun house. So what's happening? :-P

Show Me the Money, Barack

cross-posted at mydd

Okay. Look. I am not all impressed by the Obama Grand Tour. There was a movie a few years ago with Sandra Bullock who plays a grungy cop made over by Michael Caine to go undercover as a contestant in the Miss Universe Contest. One of the running jokes in that movie is that each contestant for the Biggie Prize ends her speech with "And I am for World Peace."

So I just don't get how this 2 continents in a handful of days with photo ops, little prayers leaked to the press and Biggie speeches on World Peace makes Obama a better candidate for President.

I mean this is supposed to be shore up his foreign policy credentials? Frankly, I was embarrassed.

I also don't like grandiose and soaring hyperbole. I don't trust it. I feel as if I am always screaming in my head: but what the effing hell are you gonna do? Jeeze, as long as I am doing this I may as well say that for me, anyway, Obama's speeches don't touch Jack Kennedy's. Now that guy could give a speech.

Ok. OK. I know. I am out of synch with half the democrats in the country. And this is probably when I should say I am going to vote for the guy. But I am nervous about it. I don't want to bring up unpleasant subjects, but FISA totally jammed up my personal little drive to get on the Bus.

Will he take out the troops in a year or won't he? Will he pick a Republican Vice President or won't he? Will he support gay rights and gay marriage, let alone repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell or won't he? For every person who tells you he will do all these things, there is another one with evidence who says he says he won't.

Obama has left a trail of misdirection, half-truths and pandered positions that makes my head swim. And I don't like it.

So maybe now you are wondering why I am going to vote for the guy. I hate John McCain. And I hate the Republican Party. I fear the election of John McCain the way some people fear snakes. He is the Anti-Christ. And the Republican Party is the elephant in the middle of America's living room. So I am I guess the loyal opposition. And I want to see people here hold Barack Obama's feet to the fire on basic Democratic Party principles.

I don't wanna hear about a Republican Veep because this creepo could become President. I wanna hear about repealing the Patriot Act and FISA. I want to hear about bringing back the Fairness Doctrine, so we can begin to restore the reality--as opposed to giving lip service to the ideal-- of a free press. I want a President who is friendly with the press and does not manage it in the interest of image control. I want a President committed to Social Security, raising the minimum wage and universal health care. I want a doer--not a talker. I want a President who understands the value of a civil service with appointments across the board who are the best at their job. Bush has gutted this bedrock principle--a bedrock of our democracy and its ability to serve our citizens well and fairly.

Sure I want all the bells and whistles in terms of a forward looking thinker about global warming, about moving us away from fossil fuel dependence, about solutions to our shrinking water supply, about our cities built in deserts, and about our over population.

So here's the deal. I am taking Obama on faith in the Democratic Party. Because this guy, himself, ain't doing it for me. Will he be another Carter, as President? I dunno. Ok. I know some of you love Carter. I didn't. Now there's a guy who could talk you to death. I myself do not think we would have ever gotten to where we are today in the Mideast if we had acted to free our hostages in Iran Immediately. And I don't think the party would have sunk so low with the American people.

So, the bottom line is this. Dear Barack Hussein Obama, stop with the effing soaring and get down here in the trenches with us little people who need healthcare and assistance with aging parents, who are losing their homes in the mortgage fiasco and money in banks that are failing, who want to drive cars with better gas mileage and who know the time for mass transit is Here. We don't care about fancy speeches. But we do care about vision and commitment and honesty.

Show us the money, Barack. OK??

Friday, July 25, 2008

Even The Racists Will Vote For Him

(Cross-posted at MyDD)

This is just a personal anecdote about a pleasant experience I had this evening. Back in '07, before I'd chosen a candidate, a friend asked me who I'd be voting for. I really had no idea, but I told her I was leaning toward Obama - I didn't want to support a Clinton, and I hadn't yet fully connected with Edwards. I liked Obama because he was new. My friend said, "Hell no, you better vote for Hillary. First female president, baby! Don't help put a nigger in the White House."

I cringed slightly, and she apologized halfheartedly. She really isn't a bad person, deep down. She has many wonderful qualities, and she tries to respectfully keep her bigotry to herself when she's around me. She just grew up in a bad environment, and she's almost certainly bipolar (undiagnosed). She's never been mean to an African American, as far as I'm aware. She treats them just as she treats everyone else, but at the same time, I know she thinks they're beneath her. About a year ago, she called me one afternoon sobbing her eyes out and begging me to come over. She poured us both several shots of the most disgusting vodka imaginable (Aristocrat, which is all she can afford), and mournfully told me about the horrible mistake she'd made the night before - she'd gotten drunk and slept with a black man. Her embarrassment was incomprehensible to me, but having spent at least as many nights with African Americans as with whites, perhaps I was in a poor position to judge. I just couldn't see her point of view or why she was upset.

But she was - she was humiliated and disgusted. She felt like she couldn't wash away her shame. I tried all my usual talking points, attempting to help her understand why sleeping with an African American is no different from sleeping with a white person. No amount of logic or reason seemed to reach her. At a loss, I finally shared an exceptionally embarrassing sexual experience of my own, and she laughed hard enough to momentarily forget her disgust.

She never got over the experience, though - she had "fucked a nigger," and it was inexcusable in her mind. She just doesn't want to have much to do with black people, and no one can help her overcome her racism but herself.

When I saw her tonight, I remembered to ask her how she felt about Hillary's loss. I knew my friend wanted a female president so badly, and I knew Obama's race would probably impact her vote. But instead of attacking Obama or the DNC, she said, "It just wasn't Hillary's time - it's too soon after Bill. Everyone would have just said she was riding his coattails." When I asked whether she was leaning toward McCain or Obama, she looked at me like I was crazy. She asked me why in hell anyone would vote for Bush 3.0. She said anyone who voted for McCain had a death wish. She has no health insurance, nor does her husband, and she can't afford to fill her gas tank anymore. The US wasn't ready for a woman president, she insisted, but she also assured me that Hillary would still be president one day, just not this year. It was Obama's time now, and he'd be making a different kind of history.

I told her I'd be casting my vote for Barack and mentioned that I'd gotten an Obama sticker for my car. Her first question was, "Excellent, do you have an extra one??"

I don't have an extra, but her birthday is August 7, and she will most definitely be receiving one

This is yet another reason I'm not worried. A woman who doesn't particularly like "niggers" is going to vote for Barack in November and ride around in her car with an Obama sticker for months. Jesus Christ, what are we really so afraid of? Will racism really kill Obama's campaign? Apparently the GOP has messed up so badly that even a few racists are willing to do the right thing.

Yes, that's right. Bush has screwed this country so royally that a bigot will be running to the polls to vote for a black man. Behold your legacy, Shrub. By November, that moran will do more to unify this country than Barack ever thought about doing.

mediaFail™ - an epilogue.

As some of you may know I have an ongoing series of blogs called mediaFail™. In light of the growing collection, I thought an epilogue to the unraveling of the fourth estate in the US during this election cycle was necessary.

mediaFail™ has been around for some time (as seen in the build up and subsequent coverage of the Iraq war). But came into plain view in the treatment of Hillary Clinton during the Democratic primary.

Here's another first: the press's unique push to get a competitive White House hopeful to drop out of the race. It's unprecedented.

Looking back through modern U.S. campaigns, there's simply no media model for so many members of the press to try to drive a competitive candidate from the field while the primary season is still unfolding.

Until this election cycle, journalists simply did not consider it to be their job to tell a contender when he or she should stop campaigning. That was always dictated by how much money the campaign still had in the bank, how many votes the candidate was still getting, and what very senior members of the candidate's own party were advising.


No longer content to be observers of the campaign, journalists now see themselves as active players in the unfolding drama, and they show no hesitation trying to dictate the basics of the contest, like who should run and who should quit. It's as if journalists are auditioning for the role of the old party bosses.

It's a new brand of political commentary that leaves some veteran journalists perplexed. "The idea that it's your job to tell candidates when to get out, and really trying to control the whole process -- putting it in the hands of the journalists or the reporters or the columnists -- I find that to be new and different," Haynes Johnson told me last week. A Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, Johnson has covered more than a dozen presidential campaigns and is currently working on a book about the unfolding 2008 contest.

The media coverage of this election however has gone to place that would be comical if not for how dangerous it is. Not only does the press literally think its part of the selection process but they are blaming bloggers for creating the 'gotcha' politics that have permeated the media coverage.

Um okay.

Maybe Alter's undies are in a twist because of the rise of the Commentocracy, with bloggers actually gaining some recognition for their importance in the election?

Which leads us to the latest edition of mediaFail™: Nagourney edition.

In a new article in The New Republic, Gabriel Sherman explains how the media love affair is over with Obama due to a variety of factors. Particularly the campaign's arrogance. But what's telling about the article is that the arrogance is perceived to be directed at.....


“I’ve never had an experience like this, with this campaign or others. I thought they crossed the line. If you have a problem with a story I write, call me first. I’m a big boy. I can handle it. But they never called. They attacked me like I’m a political opponent.” — New York Times reporter Adam Nagourney, on how the Obama campaign handles negative stories.


This is more about media arrogance and unleashed elitism than about a candidate. And I read a comment that perfectly summed up a message we should all be sending to the press.

How 'bout the media reports news, and doesn't try to get laid by the candidates?

Friday Night Politics Palooza!

So how is everyone tonight? As usual, I'm awaiting another Democratic meeting. I'm a little early, so I have some time to kill.

What's going on with all of you? Are you all going as crazy as I am with the election? Do you have some favorite local Democrats that you're working for?

Consider this an open thread. Tell me what's happening in your area. :-)

Cat Lovers Will Understand

crossposted from mydd

Obama coulda gone to Ramstein sans media and photo op, John Edwards really was in the hotel-- in the room with the woman reported to have given birth to his child-- and I still don't have a caretaker for my Mom.

And while all this has been going on a contractor in Brooklyn  was locked up in a psych ward for four days after he smashed into walls in three apartments trying to rescue a cat.

Auyup! You read that right. He is reported to have told the mental health police as they carted him away.

I'm not crazy, doctor. There really is a cat in my wall.

But guess what? There really, really was.

According to the NY Post, that collector of all things bizarre in the greater New York environs, it all started with a mischievous kitty named Rumi who put his head a hole in the wall of a condo undergoing renovation in Carroll Gardens.

Poor Rumi, the hole opened on a 30-foot shaft and he fell to the bottom.

The contractor, Chris Muth, had been watching Rumi for a friend and panicked when he went missing.

He couldn't reach the cat from the first apartment - even after enlarging the hole.

So the super, Doug Steiner, gave Muth permission to make a small hole in the wall of another unit.

But, Steiner said:

He opened up all the walls. I said, 'What the hell are you doing? The owner's going to flip out.'

Muth cared only for catching Rumi. Unable to catch him from that second hole, he broke into a third apartment, and again started smashing into the walls.

According to the Post:

Steiner had as much success coaxing Muth out as Muth did with Rumi.

So the super called the cops - who shipped Muth to a local psych ward.

Rumi remained in the catacombs of the condo - a former church.

Again, according to the Post in typical  NY Post style:

And the shrinks decided Muth was suffering from bats in his belfry.

They are not kidding. The hospital report on Muth declared:

He had a bizarre delusion [he] was trying to save a cat of his friend

But it all ended happily.

Muth finally convinced the doctors that he wasn't a wacko.

And Rumi, tired of his 15 days in solitary, let himself be caught by professional cat rescuers using a fishing-pole-like, professional cat-catching  device. Muth told the Post:

After 60 hours stuck down there, I thought the cat was going to die. Otherwise I wouldn't have panicked like I did.I can fix holes, but I can't bring a cat back to life.

I wish this guy was running for office somewhere. He'd get my vote!



The Berlin Bounce

Rasmussen reports that 55% of the American people report they believed Obama's speech yesterday in Berlin was either good or excellent. According to the poll, even about a third of Republicans agreed with that assessment.

Moreover, the bounce we Obama supporters hoped would happen indeed apparently is happening. Rasmussen reports:

The presumptive Democratic nominee attracts 46% of the vote while John McCain earns 41%. When "leaners" are included, it’s Obama 49% and McCain 44%. Just three days ago, the candidates were tied at 46%

Update: Sarkozy seems to be catching Obamamania. The French president said today:

Obviously one is interested in a candidate looking towards the future rather than the past. We say good luck to Barack Obama. If he is chosen France will be delighted.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Reductions in Funding ....

Cross Posted to Obama--Criticism and Support

I know I had promised to highlight a candidate with this post, but an issue has come up that has stolen my attention.

When I went to the pharmacy yesterday, I noticed a petition to the Governor and the CA State legislature trying to prevent a 10% cut in funding of the Ryan White Comprehensive AIDS Resources Emergency (CARE) Act. This enraged me, as California is only spending an average of 2 months medication costs per patient per year. Moreover, a large chunk of the funding goes to the hardest hit urban areas. In short, the LA and SF metros get over 50% of the funding, and the rest of the state is relegated to fight over the rest. While I’m all for money going where it’s needed, the earmark needs to be expanded to truly serve the population living with HIV and AIDS.

Now I know that the Ryan White CARE Act has long been a target of the GOP and fiscal conservatives, but the current funding levels are shameful. While the total amount that is earmarked for the fund seems large at $255,305,160 (FY2006 as reported by the Kaiser Family Foundation in partnership with US Dept. of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration), when you take into account there are 92,560 reported cases in the State of California (31 May, 2008, California Dept of Public Health, Office of AIDS), it boils down to an average $2758.27 per patient per year. An average month’s medication cost for someone who is taking Anti-Retroviral Therapy (HIV Meds) is around $1400.00. With the proposed 10% cutback, the average amount spent per reported case would drop to an average of $2482.44 per year.

In 2005, there was a compromise measure enacted by Congress (when reauthorizing the Ryan White CARE Act) that limited how the monies are allocated. Title’s I and II of the act are limited to spending 75% on a core set of medical services, including the AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP), and places like the Center for AIDS Research, Education, and Services (CARES), and the other 25% used for “Wrap Around Services” such as housing assistance and food / meal assistance. Those levels are good for places like Sacramento, but don’t work for places like San Francisco, where donors have taken the financial burden off the clinics and the San Francisco AIDS Foundation’s medical outreach programs. In San Francisco, the SF AIDS Foundation reports that they only use an average of 60% out of the 75% medical allocation, but cannot reallocate those surplus monies to bolster their ailing non-medical assistance programs. Other agencies, such as CARES in Sacramento, are fighting to keep every dollar they get for medical care as they are severely under-funded, and are the only such agency in the California central valley.

So, in short, when I go to the Democratic Platform meeting next week, this is the issue I will bring. This is one of the many issues that need to be addressed by Congress under the Obama Administration, and one that will be kept silent as it’s not a big news maker. But thankfully for myself (and the 92,559 other reported cases of HIV and AIDS in California), I’ve got a big mouth ... and am willing to use it to effect change.

Just my 2 Cents – comments and suggestions always welcome.


Thursday Night Open Thread

Wazzup, homies!

Anyone want to talk about what happened today? I'd rather not talk too much about my crazy day. Tell me about yours. ;-)

"The Myth of the Toss-Up Election"

Crystal Ball has a great article up that summarizes my feelings to a tee. It says, as I have felt for some weeks, that the idea the race is a toss-up right now is a myth. Granted that anything can change, the notion that it's a neck-and-neck race is a media narrative to sell advertisements. It ain't so:

While no election outcome is guaranteed and McCain's prospects could improve over the next three and a half months, virtually all of the evidence that we have reviewed--historical patterns, structural features of this election cycle, and national and state polls conducted over the last several months--point to a comfortable Obama/Democratic party victory in November.

When one candidate has a strong lead in states with 260 electoral votes and the other candidate has a similar strong lead in states with 97 electoral votes, it ain't a toss-up.

Now, the winds may change. We know the moon waxes and wanes. Life has gone on the earth nearly extinct and then revived several times. McCain may rise again, but the election, were it held today, would not be a nail-biter.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

McCain Watch: McCain Love

Remember this web video from the McCain campaign whining about criticizing the media's love affair with Barack Obama?

Well, it seems that Senator Obama is not the only candidate with allies in the media. According to today's edition of McCain Watch, a major news network edited an interview with Senator McCain to omit a major foreign policy gaffe. Read more at McCain Watch.

FYI--This Clintonista agrees with the McCain campaign's criticism of biased media coverage, but this episode clearly demonstrates that the media bends the rules for both sides.

CNN Cites Racist For Article On Obama.

(cross-posted at Kickin it with CG and Clintonistas for Obama)

Today, in a CNN article titled, “Could an Obama Presidency Hurt Black Americans?” John Blake warns that “an Obama victory could be twisted to suppress the push for racial equality” and cites several commentators — including African-Americans, whites, Latinos, and conservatives.

One such source is Steve Sailer.

For those of you that are not familiar with Mr. Sailer - he is a columnist for the American Conservative magazine. Last year he wrote that some whites who support Obama aren’t driven primarily by a desire for change. […]

“So many whites want to be able to say, ‘I’m not one of them, those bad whites. … Hey, I voted for a black guy for president"

“They hope that when a black finally moves into the White House, it will prove to African-Americans, once and for all, that white animus isn’t the cause of their troubles. All blacks have to do is to act like President Obama - and their problems will be over.”

A sampling of some of Sailer's beauties:

– African-Americans: “tend to possess poorer native judgment than members of better-educated groups. Thus they need stricter moral guidance from society”

– Obama's 'Blackness': “the brutal truth: Obama is a 'wigger'. He’s a remarkably exotic variety of the faux African-American, but a wigger nonetheless.”

– Michelle Obama: “sounds like she’s got a log-sized chip on her shoulder from lucking into Princeton due to affirmative action.”

– Katrina Victims: “Nor is it surprising that the black refugees at the Superdome and the convention center failed to get themselves organized to make conditions more livable. Poor black people seldom cooperate well with each other because they don’t trust other blacks much, for the perfectly rational reason that they commit large numbers of crimes against each other.”

Several of Sailer’s comments appeared on the site VDARE, which the Southern Poverty Law Center has classified as a white nationalist hate group.

How the hell could CNN use Sailer as a source when he has a history of repeatedly made racially insensitive remarks? *Shame on you CNN.*

Oh and if you want to send good old Steve a message - here is his blog.

McCain Watch: Guess Who Failed Geography

A few weeks ago, I wrote about McCain Watch:
The Huffington Post and have launched a joint project called McCain Watch. To recieve presidential news about John McCain that you won't find anyplace else, sign up at McCain Watch.
Another addition of McCain Watch was posted yesterday, but I'm behind because of recent traveling.

Do you remember this attack ad released by the McCain campaign last week?

Senator McCain attacks Senator Obama for not having traveled to Iraq, yet it seems that Senator McCain is the one who is struggling with the details. Despite his half-century of experience, Senator McCain cannot come up with a roadmap for Iraq favored by the Iraqis, who have instead embraced Senator Obama's plan for a drawdown of American troops. Perhaps if Senator McCain spent less time pontificating on the principle of "no defeat, no surrender" and spent more time studying the details, he would have a better understanding of the Middle East.

Read this edition of McCain Watch to see Senator McCain struggling with the geography of Iraq.

The four candidate race: Obama in a landslide

From NBC/News Wallstreet Journal. Just released

Barack Obama 48
John McCain 35
Ralph Nader 5
Bob Barr 2

Bob Novak: Hit and Run Driver

FLORIDA??!! Yes. We. Can.

Oh, my! Take a looky at this brand new gem of a poll from Rasmussen on Florida! Guess who's ahead in the Sunshine State now?

The raw numbers are:

Obama 46%
McCain 45%

But when "leaners" are included, the final numbers for Florida are:

Obama 49%
McCain 47%

Will we FINALLY get our revenge from 2000 this year? Can we FINALLY turn Florida blue, once & for all? I think so.

There's been a general trend of late (as in the last couple months) of a tightening race in Florida. Just like the national numbers, McCain just isn't making the cut. He's offering more of the same Bush-Cheney bulls**t when all of us want a new direction.

So can we make this into reality in November? YES. WE. CAN! :-)

Unity Bitchez.

In a sign that senior Democratic party officials remain deeply concerned that post-primary bitterness, two top Democratic officials have emailed a sharply-worded letter to major donors and other leading Dems confessing "fatigue and irritation" at those withholding full support from Obama and demanding that they get behind him "without conditions or demands."

Dear Democratic Friends:
2008 is a Democratic year-at all levels in all the states. The opportunity is ours. We just have to seize it.

We experienced an exciting, intense, sometimes difficult, campaign to nominate our presidential candidate. Now it's over. Barack Obama won.

I supported Hillary Clinton and am proud and pleased that I did. But she lost. Barack Obama won. It's over.

It is time for all Democrats, supporters of Senator Clinton and all other contenders for the nomination, to stand with him to secure his election and the election of Democrats at all levels of competition.

I must confess a bit of fatigue and irritation with people who continue to carp, complain, and criticize the results of the primary and lay down conditions for their support. The Los Angeles Lakers didn't establish conditions to recognize the Boston Celtics as NBA Champions; Roger Federer did not demand concessions before recognizing that Rafael Nadal defeated him at Wimbledon.

It is time to act in a mature and resourceful fashion. It's time to put the primaries behind us. It's time to support Barack Obama without conditions or demands.

It's time to WIN for Barack Obama, the Democratic Party, America, and our future. We have an unparalleled opportunity. I hope we will all do everything we can to seize the moment.

See you at the Inauguration.


Don Fowler
DNC Member At-Large, South Carolina
Former Chair of the Democratic National Committee

Alice Germond
Secretary, Democratic National Committee

Bullying progressives that are wary and mistrustful of the party and/or its nominee by barking that it's "time to support Barack Obama without conditions or demands" is categorically dumb and goes against what the party is supposed to represent. It comes across as treating the electorate as nothing but votes to exploit, certainly not as people with genuine issues that need urgent addressing, and it echoes the dictatorial tone of the administration currently in office.

Who could have possibly thought this letter was a good idea?

Obama up by one point in Florida & 14 points in New Jersey

A new Rasmussen poll released today suggests that Florida is going to be a squeaker again this year:

Obama 46
McCain 45

Last month, McCain was up by seven points in the Sunshine State, and he has maintained a lead in Rasmussen there for the last six months. So the tightening of the race is good news indeed.

A new poll in New Jersey by Monmouth University/Gannett shows Obama holds tight to his lead there:

Obama 42%
McCain 28%
Undecided 23%

Obama up by seven points in Colorado

A new Rasmussen poll released today shows that Barack Obama is up seven points over Darth McVader in Colorado:

Obama 49
McCain 42

When leaners are included, the gap narrows: Obama leads McVader 50% to 47%. Last month, Rasmussen saw the race as a tossup, but given that two months ago, Obama led by six points, last month perhaps was an outlier.

Virginia is very competitive

New findings from Public Policy Polling shows Obama up by two points in the state. This was the same spread the poll indicated last month. The race today, according to the newly released poll, suggests:

Obama 46
McCain 44

Last month, the poll showed Obama with the advantage in a 47-45 split.

"PPP surveyed 1,327 likely voters from July 17th to 20th. The survey’s margin of error is +/-2.7%." Obama's lead is not statistically significant, but the trend line from last month to this month is encouraging.

Puma Bashing [updated]

[Update--For all those who have asserted this diary is not factual. These are the facts: He didn't have reporters with him, he didn't have a press pool, he didn't do a press conference while he was on the ground in either Afghanistan or Iraq. No one disputes this. This was not only due to the security of the situation. An interview, by the way, is not any of the preceding. And in the place of real media coverage we were shown stage managed questions and the appearance of press conferences. Get it? Stage managed. If you think this is a small matter and that I am nitpicking--we will converse again in a year or so. Obama's treatment of the press has been deplorable. I am not saying the press isn't also deplorable, ok? What I am saying is this isn't any way to improve matters. We are reaching the point of a stage managed, state run media. Obama shows no inclination to reverse this aweful trend. And I will stand up for improving real media access, no matter who the candidate is!!!]

I made a different choice than the Hillary supporters who joined Puma which means Party Unity My Ass. It was a hard choice. And at first I was irritated at those who refused to support the nominee as Hillary had done and asked her supporters to do.

But Enough is Enough!!!

Leave the pumas alone. I do not think they are dishonest, misguided or stupid. I do not think they are ripping Hillary off. And I certainly do not think ridiculing them, bashing them and humiliating them serves any useful purpose.

So get over it!!! Some Hillary supporters will not back the nominee. And they do so for excellent reasons, be it dislike of Barack Obama  and/or outrage over the way Hillary was demeaned in the media and railroaded by the DNC.

I saw a clip today from Andrea Mitchell who was about as outraged as I have ever seen her over the fact no reporter was allowed to ask a question of Barack Obama in either Iraq or Afghanistan.

Everything the American public saw out of those two places about Barack Obama's trip was staged. This is something even  G.W. did not dare attempt in the general election contest. Mitchell said:

He didn't have reporters with him, he didn't have a press pool, he didn't do a press conference while he was on the ground in either Afghanistan or Iraq.

Gives you pause, doesn't it? And if it doesn't, it should.

Barack Obama is exercising  more press "management" than even George Bush.

So I think the PUMAs serve a legitimate purpose. They are saying that the primary contest was rigged which is not the way a democracy is supposed to work. And they are saying that practices like fake news conferences by a presidential candidate are not something they will vote for.

They are not saying this directly, but by their  existence These aren't just sore losers. And they aren't all weird and crazee. Many of them are longtime democrats who believe the Democratic Party needs to change, become more responsive to its members and more fair.

I could never be a PUMA, anymore than Hillary could be. But I respect their intention. It is time to stop smearing them and  accusing them of  being disloyal to Hillary. They are refusing to do as she has asked, but that is their right.

This is the way a democracy works. People get to promulgate their cause and act on their convictions. In this spirit I say  the PUMAS show us that democracy--at least at this level--is alive and still kicking--which is all to the good.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Fox News Rocks!

During a segment this weekend, Fox News’ Brett Baier said that “the high price of gas may be costing your kids some of their education. We’ll explain here.”

Now watch v. carefully.... (if you are drinking or need to use the restroom - please do so before you hit play)

Tuesday Strategy Session: Who Should We Support?

I don't know if you've talked about it with us before, but I'm inviting you all to participate once more in our Weekly Strategy Session focusing on which candidates & campaign organizations we should support. We're inviting suggestions from everyone in our community on who we should add to our new ActBlue page and promote here and at other blogs. So now, I'm giving the floor to you.

Who should we support? Who best embodies Hillary Clinton's progressive values? Who best delivers Barack Obama's message of change? Who will make great members of Congress? And which organizations best serve our cause?

So what do you think? Who should we support? I'm ready to listen to what you all have to say! :-)

And btw, let me leave you with an awesome video from young Dems! :-)

Hillary is BACK...

And she's ready to kick some Rethug ass! Read more here, and take action here. Let's go make Hillary proud! :-)

Check Me out at

Hey, everyone! I just wanted to let you know that I have a great new gig. Don't worry... I DEFINITELY won't be leaving here. I'll just be cross-posting more at somewhere new.

I'm one of the new guest bloggers at Taylor Marsh! So if you'd like, drop by & visit me some time. You can start out by looking at my latest post there.

Hopefully, I'll now see a few more familiar faces at! :-)

Some Thoughts about the Race in July

Barack Obama is commanding headlines in papers as he makes his way through the Middle East. These headlines should continue when he goes to Europe to continue his trip. One of the things that has impressed me is how presidential he appears in the photographs of him and leaders on the world stage. The other thing that impresses me is how people like King Abdullah of Jordan "have requested" an opportunity to meet him. The world and the media are treating him like a winner, and this is a very favorable psychological perspective.

Pollster dot com has a new nifty map up on their site that reviews the current positions of the candidates in the Electoral College. The way this site reads it, the race looks like this:

Obama 293
McCain 24
Toss Up 46

Notably, Obama in this assessment is close to a lock on the Electoral College. Pollster thinks that of his 293 prospective electoral votes, 260 are from states where he leads strongly. If that were to hold true for the next few months, Obama would need only to scrape up 10 more electoral votes to reach an electoral majority. On the other hand, Darth McVader has 97 votes from firmly held states and 117 from states that lean his way.

Gallup Daily Tracking has seen an up-tick in the Illinois senator's support. They currently report the popular vote spread this way:

Obama 47%
McCain 41%

These figures included two days of findings from when Obama started his trip. Those gauzy pictures of Obama at 6'2" towering over Hamid Karzai on the cover of USA Today recently might be a nice souvenir after the campaign concludes, huh?

Monday, July 21, 2008

Some Recent News with Numbers

There are some very interesting and encouraging findings released in the last few days. Let's move from today and go backward a few days:

1. Public Policy Polling released new findings today about the race in Ohio. The poll suggests Obama leads McCain in the Buckeye state, 49% to 40%. Last month, they found that Obama led McCain there 50% to 39%. There is no statistical difference between the two polls, so we can rest easy that Ohio is holding steady for Obama right now. It is notable that no Republican presidential nominee ever has won the presidency without winning Ohio.

2. The Virginia Pilot reports a significant up-tick in the number of young people in Virginia who are registering to vote. The report quotes the ubiquitous Larry Sabato, "Obama’s message of change resonates with young voters." I don't think that insight got him either his doctorate or his teaching position at UVA.

3. Democrats have gained 700,000 new voter registrations since the 2004 election while Republicans have lost one million registrants in the same period of time.

4. The Granite State Poll had McCain over Obama in New Hampshire in April by 49% to 43%. A poll they released today shows Obama over McCain 46% to 43%.

5. Kathy Frankovic observes that recent data suggest 50% of Obama supporters are enthusiastic about their candidate while only 16% of McCain supporters felt that way about their guy. She goes on to point out that Bush had the enthusiasm edge in July 2004, that it started earlier, and that it never diminished up to election day. "Strength-of-support numbers pretty much stayed the same for the rest of the campaign."

Looking good!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Lazy Sunday Open Thread

What's going on? I'm interested. Talk to me. :-)