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Friday, October 31, 2008

ACORN Sends Squirrel to Sabotage Florida Election

Best story of the day, from Ben Smith:

VERO BEACH — A frisky squirrel caused a 1 ½-hour power outage affecting 800 customers including the Indian River County Library and Courthouse on Thursday morning, city power officials said.

The outage slowed - but didn't stop - early voting at the library. During the outage, early voting went on by flashlight. Further information about how the votes were processed was not immediately available.

At about 8:45 a.m., a squirrel leaped from a tree onto a power line, causing a fire that tripped an electrical switch, knocking out a power line feeding a section of the downtown, said Randall McCamish, the city’s director of electrical transmission and distribution.

The dead squirrel was found lying on the ground.

Once the power was restored, early voting continued as usual.

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Palin's Inability to Understand the Constitution

Sarah Palin continues to expound on her theories of how the Constitution works. They are theories that I never encountered in law school, undergrad or third grade civics. If you're still considering McCain, please remember you will be electing someone to the Vice Presidency who shows so little understanding of how the Constitution works that she is likely to trample right over it.

From ABC's Political Radar:
Gov. Sarah Palin said she fears her First Amendment rights may be threatened by "attacks" from reporters who suggest she is engaging in a negative campaign against Barack Obama.

"If [the media] convince enough voters that that is negative campaigning, for me to call Barack Obama out on his associations," Palin told host Chris Plante, "then I don't know what the future of our country would be in terms of First Amendment rights and our ability to ask questions without fear of attacks by the mainstream media."
Okay. Let's start with the basics. Here's what the First Amendment says:

Congress shall make no law ... abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press...

I'm pretty sure that limits its application to the federal government and doesn't give newspapers any authority to derogate a citizen's right to free speech. (Of course, this didn't stop John McCain from authoring campaign finance legislation that did violate the First Amendment). I'm pretty sure that the 1st Amendment also applies to state governments because of the 14th Amendment. I think the key word Ms. Know Nothing is missing is the term "government."

If she wants to talk about a chilling effect on the free speech rights of others, as a Governor, and thus a member of a state government, and thus to whom the First Amendment is applicable to, she might want to take a look at her own fear mongering and what it has done to cause some people to fear protesting at her rallies thus limiting the rights of free speech of others.

I'm just glad she can't stop me from writing this. Doesn't look like the mean old press has stopped me, either. Huh. She must not know what she's talking about. Again.

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McCain-Obama Dance Off

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McCain to Appear on SNL Saturday

Ben Affleck and John McCain collide at 30 Rock on Saturday. Affleck will be hosting SNL, and McCain will make an appearance. From the Huffington Post:

Aides say the Republican presidential candidate will make a detour from battleground states to the late-night weekend show that has been a must-watch for many during the political season.

Earlier this month, McCain running mate Sarah Palin and her impersonator, Tina Fey, earned "Saturday Night Live" its best ratings in 14 years. Palin's guest shot had been widely anticipated since Fey began imitating her a month ago.

McCain last appeared on the show in May, after clinching the nomination and while the Democratic primary continued.

McCain hosted "SNL" in 2002.

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Obama on GOP: Kidnapped by incompetent subset

Obama speaks for all Obamacans when he says the Republican party has been kidnapped by an incompetent, highly ideological subset of the GOP. The interview by Rachel Maddow starts about 3:20 in.

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John McCain "Or?"

John McCain almost slips and admits he could lose.

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The Palin Presidency - A Tale for Halloween

She sat alone, slumped in her chair, her arms listlessly dangling over the armrests. She was sitting in the dark. She didn't care. She wanted to be enveloped and taken over by the darkness. It matched the mood of her soul.

It had been the worst election defeat in the history of Presidential elections. No sitting President had received a lower percentage of the vote since William Howard Taft in 1912. At least that's what she'd been told. She didn't fucking care about history unless it was her own personal history.

She knew one thing for sure. There were lots of people she hated. She hated John McCain for dying in office one day after the inauguration. She hated Joe the Plumber for turning out to be a terrible Chief of Staff. She hated Rudy Giuliani for being a competent Vice President, one most Americans thought should replace her. But most of all, she hated Hillary Clinton for beating her.

It had all started on a beautiful January morning in 2009. She had just been staring at her room in her new home at the Naval Observatory. She hated that the drive up Massachusetts took her so far away from the White House. Leaving last night had been painful, but she was determined to enjoy her four years as Vice President. On this chilly, bright morning her biggest concern was where to fit the tanning bed when it arrived from Alaska. It was the last happy thought she would have for the next 24 hours.

John McCain had finally succumbed to the stroke his doctors had been warning about. The circumstances of when and where it happened had never been revealed to her because she hadn't qualified for National Security Clearance yet. The ascendancy to the Presidency took care of that problem.

The first month had gone alright, but then China had invaded Afghanistan. It was a move no one saw coming, and one that distracted everyone as Chinese agents infiltrated the United States, secretly moving into position. She hadn't been sure what to do because she didn't see the Chinese coming. She had counted on being able to spot them approaching the White House. The next thing the country knew, Boston was gone, obliterated by a nuclear attack.

The Chinese had accomplished it just by smuggling huge bombs through the ports. She had had to fire all the port security because there wasn't any money in the federal budget. She had banned taxes for all Americans (and the Democrats had been too weak in Congress to stop her). Then she had taken all the leftover tax revenue and stuffed it into Defense Spending because now was not the time to short change her son while he was serving in Iraq.

In the immediate hours and days after the attack on Boston she had tried several approaches. First, she said, the attack didn't really matter because that wasn't real America anyway. No one seemed to like this response. Then she said, well, it was too bad Boston was gone, but everyone could move to Alaska because it was one of the last refuges for the final days and the attack clearly meant the world was ending.

Her advisers tried to tell her Americans were panicking. The attacks led to an epic financial failure and more and more Americans started packing up and moving to Canada. She didn't know what to do. Finally, Rudy Giuliani started standing behind her, hidden by a curtain, telling her how to answer questions through an ear piece. That seemed to calm everyone down. For the next couple of years, the country managed to recover and she managed to not make any decisions on her own. Rudy was calling the shots.

But then she went rouge. She'd been reminiscing about all the good times on the campaign trail, about how as Vice President she could've had so much more power than she did as President. That's when she came across a picture of Joe the Plumber. He was so handsome. She just had to have him, in the White House.

A call went out, "Get Joe the Plumber." Federal agents went to the Ohio Penitentiary where he was being held for failure to pay back taxes and pulled him out. She fired her Chief of Staff, Meghan McCain, and put Joe in her place. With Joe by her side, Palin instituted a reign of terror that would've resulted in her impeachment had the Democrats not badly wanted to keep Rudy Giuliani out of the Presidency. They let her destroy the country for the next two years and watched triumphantly as Hillary Clinton won the Presidency.

All Hillary had to do at most campaign stops was point out the acid rain falling from the sky, the black clouds on the horizon from the small towns that were burning, or ask voters to stop and listen to the sounds of bombs falling as soldiers waged a war against liberals. It worked. She lost.

Now she was left sitting in the dark, listening to the sounds of church bells ringing, choirs singing and women weeping with relief. She may have lost, but they could never take away the fact that she was a Maverick. She sat up straight in her chair, dusted off her skirt, and held her chin high. "To hell with them," she thought, "I may have lost the election, but I'll always be a Maverick, and that, after all, is what matters at the end of the day."

A crack in the door appeared letting a small sliver of light into the room. She picked up her shotgun and fired a warning shot through the door. It quickly closed.

"Yep, Maverick."

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Daily Show: Barack's Millions

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Bill Kristol on Daily Show: Obama's Not a Radical

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Thursday, October 30, 2008

Alec Baldwin Calls Palin "Bible Spice"

From the Huffington Post:

"30 Rock" star Alec Baldwin talked to David Letterman about guesting on "Saturday Night Live" alongside Sarah Palin.

"She was lovely" and "very nice" he told Letterman. He also said he didn't want her hand on the nuclear button.

Then, imitating her voice (which he's done before), Baldwin said of Palin, "She said to me, 'I've been talking to your brother Stephen and we've been chatting, trying to figure out how to knock some sense into you.'"

After a few more Stephen jokes on Alec's part, he told Dave, "She's a beautiful, beautiful woman." and referred to her as "Bible Spice."

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Election Eve: Candidates Turn to Monday Night Football

Targeting the all important Pittsburgh/Pennsylvania and Virginia markets, both John McCain and Barack Obama have agreed to interviews with Chris Berman that will air during halftime of Monday Night Football game between the Steelers and the Redskins. From ESPN via Jonathan Martin:
On the eve of the presidential election, with "Monday Night Football" from Washington as the backdrop, candidates Barack Obama and John McCain are planning to participate in one-on-one interviews on ESPN via satellite.

ESPN's Chris Berman will do the segments earlier Monday, pending last-minute schedule changes by the candidates, and they'll air at halftime of the Redskins-Pittsburgh Steelers broadcast from D.C., the network announced. The game kicks off at 8:30 p.m. ET.
Do you think McCain will repeat his false claim that he named the Steel Curtain instead of his squadron when pressed by his POW captors? I don't know if either candidate wants to lay claim to supporting either team. While Washington DC may only have 3 electoral votes, the Redskins are pretty popular in Virginia. Whose electorate to piss off? Pennsylvania's or Virginia's? They'll both, obviously, stay neutral.

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Best Line of the Day

After John McCain was stood up by Joe the Plumber in Ohio:

Plumbers never show up when they say they will. Typical.

-comment by csmiller on the New Republic

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Colbert Endorses Obama

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Joe? Joe? Joe? Anyone?

Joe the Plumber ditches McCain.

From the Huffington Post:

McCain campaign officials later said that Joe was slated to appear with McCain at a different campaign event on Thursday.

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Sarah Palin Confidential

Update: In light of recent revelations that Palin didn't know Africa was a continent, I have to stress this was a hypothetical article I intended as sarcasm. Little did I know how right I was.


Just five days away from the general election, one of John McCain's top advisers has decided that now is the time to speak out about Sarah Palin. This person , whom we'll call "Joe," was scheduled to do an in depth interview with the New York Times after the election about Ms. Palin, but things have deteriorated so far, "Joe" now believes the only way to salvage the election is to do a tell all interview in hopes that people will forgive Mr. McCain and vote for him anyway. The senior adviser says, "Our hope is that America will elect Mr. McCain regardless of Sarah Palin. Then, after the election, we can replace her with Joe Lieberman." Here is what End Politics As Usual learned from "Joe."

In the beginning, Ms. Palin appeared to the campaign to be sharp and a good choice. She was very popular in Alaska and the McCain campaign believed that her appeal to the white working class voters would overcome whatever inexperience she brought to the table. However, the campaign would soon discover they had more of a dunce on their hands than a novice.

"It was shocking," says Joe. "I started out the prepping on a pretty basic level after she was unable to answer some geography questions. Just out of curiosity, I asked her, 'How many continents are there?' She replied, 'Six.' Naturally, I asked her to name the ones she thought were continents. She named six of them and then stopped. I asked her about the one she'd left out, 'Why didn't you mention Antarctica?' She replied, 'In Alaska, we don't believe in the South Pole. The North Pole is the only one that matters.' I knew right then, this was going to be a long election."

The daily briefings and prep sessions turned into night long, cramming marathons. "It was unreal," says Joe. "I thought I would be talking about the nuances of the Bush Doctrine and pre-emptive strikes but I ended up debating when dinosaurs walked the earth. That was the longest night ever. I couldn't believe I was actually arguing with her. And then when she said she could see Russia from her house, well, by that time, it sounded better than anything else I'd been hearing. So we went with it."

What followed next was a long list of demands from the candidate: tanning beds installed in the Straight Talk Express, personal trainers, chefs, babysitters, and a makeup/style consultant. "You'd think as a former beauty queen she would know how to do her own makeup and to come up with a hairstyle that didn't make you think of the 1960s. Even that was a battle. We had to hold her in the chair screaming while we cut her hair. It was traumatic for everyone."

As the campaign chugged on, Ms. Palin became more and more erratic. At one point, she put on an Obama sticker and started to charge out of the plane. One of her handlers managed to tackle her and remove the sticker.

"I asked her, why would she wear an Obama sticker? She said it was all part of a plan that would make sense once she got on stage. She asked if she could have the sticker back and if I wouldn't mind bringing her some matches and a witch's cauldron. At that point, I called Mr. McCain."

It was from that point on that Mr. McCain tried to do every possible interview with her. His doctors became concerned that the stress of sitting for those interviews with her was beginning to increase his blood pressure. The campaign was concerned if it came out he had medical problems because of Ms. Palin, the country would never elect him. Mr. McCain was almost guaranteed to die in office if he had to spend one more day with her. The campaign did the only thing it could think to do at this point: start spreading rumors about Ms. Palin.

"I had someone get in touch with Politico and point out what we thought everyone would notice anyway, the $150,000 expenditure for clothing. It's not like we tried to hide it, but the press was so focused on this Bill Ayers thing that they almost missed it. That brought us some relief, but reporters started sniffing around again. So we took the only possible step we could, we started calling Palin names."

Newspaper reporters were soon getting "inside information" that Palin was a "diva" or a "whackjob" and that she was single-handedly trying to ruin John McCain. "This wasn't a stretch," says Joe "She was really out to get us. We had no choice left but to hope that by telling this story, the American people would see us as the victims and take sympathy on us. We didn't want to have to pay for our own mistakes, especially when they were really her mistakes. We hoped the bad press would be enough to force her out of the campaign. It didn't work. She won't budge."

There was only one thing left to do. In a last ditch effort, Mr. McCain scoured hours to tape of campaign rope lines hoping to find a diversion. That's when he struck gold. Joe the Plumber. The campaign released the Plumber unvetted onto the national stage in hopes that the press would quit focusing on Governor Palin and try and disprove Joe's credentials as an everyman. It worked.

"Instead of Keith Olbermann pointing out over and over again how ridiculously stupid Ms. Palin is, he was devoting entire special comments to Joe the Plumber. Those annoying liberal bloggers all started chasing him, the press started interviewing him, and no one remembered to try and get a press conference with Ms. Palin."

So where does this leave the McCain-Palin team now that the inside story is out?

"We're sticking with her through election night," says Joe, "After that, Mr. McCain is going to fire her. There's nothing in the Constitution to keep him from dismissing the Vice President, and if there was, she wouldn't know enough about it to fight back. She's out come November 5th. So, nudge nudge, wink wink, vote for McCain-Palin on November 4 and remember, it's really a vote for McCain-Lieberman."

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Fey: Palin Offered Her Pregnant Daughter to Babysit Tina's

The babysitting comments are about half way in, with 3:30 left.

From the Huffington Post:

According to Fey, when Sarah Palin ("she was nice") guested on "Saturday Night Live," she asked Fey where Alice had gone as the show approached. Fey told Conan:

"Gov. Palin was like, 'Oh did Alice go home? Oh, cause Bristol woulda babysat.' She offered Bristol Palin to babysit Alice... And it was Bristol's birthday, too. I was like yeah, that's exactly what 17-year-old Bristol Palin wants to do at SNL is babysit the toddler of the lady that gooks on her mom... but they're a nice family"

Also, Alice gets confused telling Sarah Palin and Tina Fey apart, and Fey let Alice watch "Psycho.

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Daily Show: Sarah Palin Goes Rouge

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Barack Obama on the Daily Show

Also worth watching: Stewart compares his interview prep for Obama with Slater's.

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Wednesday, October 29, 2008

McCain Aide "Speechless", Palin ready for 2012

Upon hearing that Sarah Palin said of course she was interested in running in 2012 instead of saying the politically correct, "I'm not looking past Tuesday" a McCain aide was speechless, and then uttered, "Huh."

Video: Jed Report

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Obama's Infomercial

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Palin Over the Moon for Joe the Plumber

Strange story out of Ohio today implying Palin has a crush on Joe the Plumber, and was so overwhelmed by his presence that she embellished his resume. From the Washington Independent:

I don’t mean to be weird or anything, but the sexual tension was palpable: “All the pictures I’ve seen of him, I knew I’d like him wearing his Carhartts and steel-toed boots.” Gov. Sarah Palin apparently got so excited that she momentarily granted him the honored double status of veteran and Frontier State native: “He’s a fellow Alaska[n], and he’s a fellow military man who has served our country proudly. I’d like you to meet him.”

He is neither. But then again, his name isn’t Joe and he isn’t a plumber. So, really, who’s to blame her for getting a little carried away?

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Dowd: The Maverick Wears Prada

Maureen Dowd offers up an entertaining movie script about Palin:

INT. A HOTEL SUITE — in the middle of the day in the middle of Ohio.

NICOLLE WALLACE, a slender, preppie-looking blonde wearing a string of pearls is pacing and frantically thumbing her BlackBerry. She is a top McCain adviser under STEVE SCHMIDT who has been seconded to SARAH PALIN. On the TV, MSNBC’s DAVID SHUSTER is asking ANNE KORNBLUT about rumors that PALIN has gone AWOL after McCain advisers anonymously labeled her a rogue “diva” and a “whack job.”



How’d she get away?

TRACEY SCHMITT, another blonde sorority type in pearls, also a Bush person who became a McCain person who was then sent over to manage PALIN as her press secretary, sits slumped in a chair, dejectedly checking her BlackBerry messages.

How the heck should I know? She told me she was going to the bathroom to change out of the Jimmy Choos into something more Target for the Joe the Plumber “They’re Not Smears, They’re Just Facts” Bus Tour. She never came back. I called Todd. He’s not picking up.

Read more.

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Obama: Next They'll Say I'm a Communist

Updated with video.

Obama with a good line today addressing McCain allegations that he's a socialist. From the Huffington Post:

Rallying a crowd Wednesday in North Carolina, the Democratic presidential contender said McCain will soon "be accusing me of being a secret communist because I shared my toys in kindergarten. I shared my peanut butter and jelly sandwich."

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Colbert Bury's His Heart at Wounded Knee

Hilarious interview with Sherman Alexie, a Native American author.

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Daily Show: John McCain's Air Quotes

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Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Vote Flipping Caught on Tape

A fascinating bit of video showing how touch screen voting machines can actually pick a candidate other than the one you touched. Numerous people in Jackson County, West Virginia reported that when they tried to vote for Obama the machine instead picked McCain. So Video the Vote went to Jackson County and the County Clerk showed them how the vote flipping happens. Apparently, if the machine isn't calibrated correctly it picks the wrong candidate. What's really disturbing is the clerk calibrates the machine and it works correctly ONE time! The very next time it goes back to not working. Comforting. At least if you see it happen and tell someone at the polling site they should be able to fix it and correct your vote.

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Daley: One Million People to Celebrate with Obama

Chicago Mayor Richard Daley says one million people will attend Obama's election night party in Grant Park in Chicago. Security is going to be a nightmare, but Daley is handing that to the Secret Service. From the Sun-Times:
Mayor Daley predicted Tuesday that more than a million people would descend on Grant Park for Barack Obama's election night “celebration” and said the city has no plans to screen people entering the park.

“We're not gonna be screening people going to the park. You'll be here for the next two weeks. You just can't do it,” Daley said.

Last week, Daley put a $2 million price tag on the cost of city services tied to the Obama rally and said the cash-flush Obama campaign had agreed to cover every penny because of Chicago's "financial crisis."

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Republicans for Obama

Yes, there are a few of us out there.

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Michelle Obama on the Tonight Show

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Gallup: Polls Narrow Slightly

Gallup's Daily Tracking Poll has a slight slide towards McCain among likely voters with results now at 49% for Obama, 47% for McCain. Their expanded Gallup poll has Obama at 51% to McCain's 44%.

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McCain Adviser: Palin a "Whack Job"

No, there's no bitterness here. From Politico:

In convo with Playbook, a top McCain adviser one-ups the priceless “diva” description, calling her “a whack job.”

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Barack Obama on the Daily Show Wednesday

Earlier this morning, Bill Kristol was listed as the scheduled guest for Wednesday. He has now been bumped, appropriately, to make way for Barack Obama Wednesday night. Here's Obama's previous interview on the show:

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Not that it Matters...

...but Obama wasn't talking about redistribution of wealth in his 2001 radio interview as FOX News, Drudge, and the McCain campaign complain. He was part of a panel that was discussing the role of the Supreme Court in implementing civil rights changes, school desegregation, and particularly the Warren Court and its ground-breaking desegregation rulings.

I had flashbacks to law school as I read the entire transcript. I realized, that while I may understand the nuances and the arguments that were being made, it may not make a lot of sense to Joe the Plumber. Therefore, it's easy for McCain to cherry pick some key phrases like "redistributive change" and "redistribution of wealth" and make it sound like Obama was talking about socialism.

The explanation of what Obama was really talking about entails explaining the 14th Amendment, the separation of powers, and the influence of stare decisis on the current Supreme Court. Now, when your candidate for VP doesn't even know what the Constitution says about the role of the Vice President, I don't think you're going to take the time to understand what a Constitutional law scholar is saying about desegregation.

The bottom line is this: Obama didn't think the Warren Court was as radical as people say it was when it ordered school desegregation. He thought they stayed within the confines of the Constitution and followed the social norms of the day. He said it would've been really radical if the Warren Court had started getting into economic social injustices. He says one of the fallouts of the Brown v. Board of Education ruling (that desegregated the schools) was that the Court was placed in a position to try and order school districts and states how to distribute their money so that the schools were equal. He says this is not a role that the Court is very good at and that it is an administrative function best left to the legislatures.

Now, if you're still with me, can somebody tell me what any of that has to do with socialism? The real question is, does McCain oppose school desegregation?


Not that it matters, but the AP reads the interview the same way I did, calling the McCain attacks false.

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McCain-Palin Advocating "Sharing the Wealth"

McCain and Palin are having a field day with the notion that Barack Obama is a socialist. It's an argument that is taking solid root in the base, but isn't gaining much traction anywhere else (at least as far as I can tell). It seems like a bizarre argument to me to take Obama's notion that we should "spread the wealth around" and use it to proclaim him a socialist. First, it's hypocritical. Here are what McCain and Palin, before they were running on the GOP ticket, had to say about spreading the wealth, according to the New Yorker:
During the 2000 campaign, on MSNBC’s “Hardball,” a young woman asked him why her father, a doctor, should be “penalized” by being “in a huge tax bracket.” McCain replied that “wealthy people can afford more” and that “the very wealthy, because they can afford tax lawyers and all kinds of loopholes, really don’t pay nearly as much as you think they do.” The exchange continued:

YOUNG WOMAN: Are we getting closer and closer to, like, socialism and stuff?. . .
MCCAIN: Here’s what I really believe: That when you reach a certain level of comfort, there’s nothing wrong with paying somewhat more.

A few weeks before she was nominated for Vice-President, [Palin] told a visiting journalist—Philip Gourevitch, of this magazine—that “we’re set up, unlike other states in the union, where it’s collectively Alaskans own the resources. So we share in the wealth when the development of these resources occurs.”
Of course, the idea that Obama would take office and suddenly morph into a socialist and ram his radical agenda through a Democratically controlled Congress is absurd. First, if he does happen to win, he'll want to be re-elected in 2012. Suddenly turning the Federal Government into France isn't the way to go about getting votes.

Second, this is a man who is so deliberative and thoughtful about every choice and decision he's ever made that he voted "present" 130 times as a state senator in Illinois. That really sounds like someone whose going to suddenly rock the boat and institute the most radical-leftist agenda this nation has ever seen. He is, after all, handing out Marxist literature at his rallies just to give people a head's up.... Or not.

Third, redistributive wealth (i.e. taxes) is not something Americans are willing to give up. They may bitch and moan about paying money to the government, but they'll definitely take the help from FEMA after a hurricane (presuming they show up). They'll definitely take the money for their schools (presuming they like No Child Left Behind). They'll definitely take those social security checks (presuming there's any money left). Where does all that money for those things come from? I think it works something like this: the government takes your wealth, it throws it into a big pool, and then it redistributes it.

Hopefully we'll elect Barack Obama President. I've always wanted to live in Paris.

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Daily Show: Joe the Plumber Gone Wild

You've got to go about three minutes in and check out all the stupid names Palin the Candidate has given everyone on the campaign trail!

Stewart on Palin not wanting to "label" herself a feminist: She doesn't want to label herself? I think Sarah Palin might be the only candidate in history who has literally labeled herself! [As Miss Wasilla]

The McCain-Palin team knows that labeling people, reducing them to a single word is demeaning and simplistic. And they know that voters, they don't like it. Voters like.....

[Palin recites list of "voters" names]
Joe the Plumber
Ed the Dairy Man
Doug the Barber
Tito the Builder
Christine the Florist
Bill the Bricklayer
Cindy the Citizen
Rose the Teacher
Clark the Cook
Kareena the Nurse
Joe the Farmer
Dave the Cop
Joe the Plumber's Son
Vicky the Realtor
Jeffrey the Hockey Player
Jack the Hunter

Mack the Knife! Sam the Butcher! Bozo the Clown! What is with the name and occupation thing? Is McCain-Palin looking to rule us in the Middle Ages? Reginald the Smith! McCain-Palin: Building a bridge to the 13th Century!

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Monday, October 27, 2008

Sarah Palin: U.S. Senator?

Alaska Republican Senator Ted Stevens has been found guilty of lying about free home renovations he received. As the New York Times points out, Stevens is not required to drop out of the race and he has stated he does not intend to. If he does stay in he could still be elected. This is probably the course of action Sarah Palin would suggest he take. Why?

Here's my wild hypothetical. Stevens stays in the race and is re-elected to his Senate seat. A few days later (after Palin and McCain lose) he will send his letter of resignation to the Governor of Alaska and the United States Senate. What happens then? The Governor of Alaska would have to appoint someone to fill his seat. Guess who would be on the top of Palin's list? Sarah herself.

That's right, Palin could appoint herself United States Senator under Alaskan law and go pretend to be in charge of the United States Senate (at least she has an outside shot of doing this, unlike if she was Vice President as she mistakenly believes). I think she would still have to be elected to the seat in a special election, but that may not be a problem for her since most Alaskans would probably be pissed she lost the General Election.

Why would she do this? She faces re-election for Governor in 2010. If she really wants to run for President in 2012, she should get into the U.S. Senate and start serving that six year term so she doesn't have to waste time and resources on a gubernatorial re-election campaign. She could focus all her energy on running for the Presidency.

Plus, I'd love to see her sitting on a committee with John McCain. Those two would love getting to spend more time together!

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Obama's Closing Argument

I don't think he would've ever lost a case had he been a trial lawyer.

Obama: "Don't believe for a second that this election is over. Don't think for a minute that power concedes. We have a lot of work to do. We have to work like our future depends on it in this last this week because it does depend on it this week. In one week's time, we can choose an economy that rewards work and creates new jobs fuels prosperity from the bottom up. In one week we can choose to invest in health care for our families and education for our kids and renewable energy for our future. In one week we can choose hope over fear and unity over division and the promise of change over the power of the status quo. In one week we can come together as one nation, and one people, and once more choose our better history. That's what's at stake. That's what we're fighting for."

Video: Jed Report

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Suggestions for Obama's Half Hour Ad

We've already seen what Saturday Night Live thinks Obama should do with his prime time slot Wednesday night. Now New York Magazine gets some suggestions from other entertainers/strategists (even digging up Bruce Campbell!):

Bruce Campbell, actor:
A low-budget horror movie called Barackula: He sucks the life out of Republicans.

Bill Maher, TV host:
A game show, Spread the Wealth, where lazy, do-nothing contestants vie for the hard-earned wages of decent Americans. But the way things are looking, Obama could just let McCain rant and rave, and call it Old Yeller.

Kevin Smith, filmmaker:
Dude’s got a massive war chest: He needs to drop some Orson Wellesian “War of the Worlds” on us. Calmly tell America that the saucers have landed in the Arctic Circle (or somewhere that the media can’t immediately debunk), and cut to “satellite footage” (courtesy of ILM) of bloodthirsty moon-men chowing down on penguins, hungry for human flesh. At this point he could terrify this country into a state of violent panic and still get elected.

Alison Becker, comedian:
The Obama Factor: He faces life-affirming challenges—parachute blindfolded, tame a lion, back up a hard drive, reconcile a gay college student with his homophobic roommate—all in 30 minutes. Who says he’s not a man of action?

Kevin Allison, comedian:
Team up with Oprah, and give all undecideds a new car.

Kevin Bleyer, writer, The Daily Show:
“Hello. I’m Barack Obama. Only in America can my story be told. A skinny kid with a funny name. Son of a Kenyan goatherder. And one of the survivors of Oceanic Flight 815. Justify that, J. J. Abrams!”

Donna Brazile, strategist:
Barack Show: The Amazing Race
Millions of viewers watch as Team Obama races around the country in The Amazing Race. Never knowing where they’ll go next or what they’ll have to do once there, Team Obama will be put to the ultimate test as they work together to stay ahead of the rest. One by one, teams will be eliminated. The first team to cross the finish line will win a new job and two rent-free mansions for four years. (My apologies to CBS.)

Extreme Makeover: Obama Edition
Put together one very run-down Oval Office, a deserving country, the Obama administration, four years, and what do you get? The answer is Extreme Makeover: Obama Edition. A race against time, each self-contained episode begins with team leader Barack Obama’s wake-up call as he, along with his administration, a Democratic-controlled Congress, and an energized populace pleasantly surprises an unsuspecting country with the news that an issue has been resolved with common-sense solutions. Then viewers witness not only the unbelievable transformation of the Oval Office, but during the final and emotional reveal, they see how the makeover has positively impacted the lives of a deserving country. (My apologies to ABC.)

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The McCain-Palin Civil War

The public rift between the McCain campaign and Sarah Palin is turning into a divide the size of the Grand Canyon. "She's a diva!" says a unrevealed McCain campaign source. Says another, She was the hardest candidate in history to get up to speed.

This is obviously not surprising given that they're down in the polls. However, the inability of the campaign to clamp down on either side has led to a lot of juicy nuggets about the fracture between the two camps and, even better, details about Palin's Eliza Doolittle training. From CNN:
Over the weekend, sources told CNN that long-brewing tensions between Palin and key aides to McCain were on the rise.

Several McCain advisers suggested that they have become increasingly frustrated with what one aide described as Palin "going rogue."

McCain sources say Palin has gone off-message several times, and they privately wonder whether the incidents were deliberate. They cited an instance in which she labeled robocalls -- recorded messages often used to attack a candidate's opponent -- "irritating" even as the campaign defended their use. Also, they pointed to her telling reporters she disagreed with the campaign's decision to pull out of Michigan.

A second McCain source says she appears to be looking out for herself more than the McCain campaign.

"She is a diva. She takes no advice from anyone," this McCain adviser said. "She does not have any relationships of trust with any of us, her family or anyone else.

"Also, she is playing for her own future and sees herself as the next leader of the party. Remember: Divas trust only unto themselves, as they see themselves as the beginning and end of all wisdom."

But two sources, one Palin associate and one McCain adviser, defended the decision to keep her media interaction limited after she was picked, both saying flatly that she was not ready and that the missteps could have been a lot worse.

They insisted that she needed time to be briefed on national and international issues and on McCain's record.

"Her lack of fundamental understanding of some key issues was dramatic," said another McCain source with direct knowledge of the process to prepare Palin after she was picked. The source said it was probably the "hardest" to get her "up to speed than any candidate in history."

Throw in the voice coach and the stylist and you've got My Fair Lady without the songs. Thank God we haven't heard her sing, "Wouldn't it be Loverly."

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Crazy Florida Anchor

This one's been out there for a couple of days and I've held off saying anything on the subject. I worked in Orlando for a station in competition with Barbara West and her station, Channel 9. However, I think anyone can tell, just by watching these clips, that she certainly has an agenda, and it's thinly disguised. On top of that, I can tell you that she is a crackpot with no real journalistic integrity.

The back story: she grilled Biden saying Obama was a Marxist and said Obama and Acorn had perpetrated a big fraud on America. Prior to the Biden interview, she had lobbed softball after softball to McCain.

West defended her idiotic interview in an article in the Orlando Sentinel. All I have to say, is any station that would hire Leland Vittert as a reporter has no clue what a real journalist looks like. (By the way, I did not make the video below).

Update: Biden brings up the interview and the questions about Karl Marx calling them ugly.

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Sunday, October 26, 2008

Biden Passes 5th Grader's VP Pop Quiz

Joe Biden is able to pass the grade school test that Sarah Palin failed. Florida 5th Grader Damon Weaver asks Biden what a VP does and Biden does not say the VP is in charge of the Senate. This interview also took place before Palin's infamous 3rd grader question.

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Palin Impersonator Tricks McCain

From Politico:

Did Halloween come early in Iowa?

Check out the lady above, who bears a resemblance to Sarah Palin, and how she appers to acknowledge the cheers when McCain mentions his running mate.

To be clear: McCain's rally was in Cedar Falls, Iowa. Palin is in Florida today.

Sorta wild, huh?
What is McCain doing in Iowa anyway?

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SNL: The Barack Obama Variety Show

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SNL: Biden Tries to Lose Obama the Election

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Saturday, October 25, 2008

SNL: President Bush Endorses McCain-Palin

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Most Pathetic Story of the Campaign

If it wasn't sad enough that a woman in Pittsburgh, who happened to be a McCain volunteer, thought it was a good idea to attack herself (or have someone do it), carve a B in her face, and then claim it was done by a black man who didn't like her McCain bumper sticker (and who she says carved a B into her face for "Barack") then it's even sadder, and not surprising, that the McCain campaign decided to exploit the woman for their own political purposes.

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Friday, October 24, 2008

Wassup 2008

Eight-years after the first Wassup, things aren't going so well for the guys. But change is coming...

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No Posts Today

I'm in meetings all day. Posting later.

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Thursday, October 23, 2008

McCain's Brother to 911 Operator: "F*** You."

Irritated that he was stuck in traffic while cars on the other side of the road were moving, John McCain's brother decided he'd had enough. So he did what every rational citizen would do. Call 911. From Politico:

Operator: 911 state your emergency

Caller: It's not an emergency but do you know why on one side at the damn drawbridge of 95traffic is stopped for 15 minutes and yet traffic's coming the other way?

Operator: Sir, are you calling 911 to complain about traffic? (pause)

Caller: "(Expletive) you." (caller hangs up)

The operator then called back, and received this message: "Hi this is Joe McCain I can't take this message now because I'm involved in a very ... important political project... I hope on Nov. 4th we have elected John."

McCain then apparently called 911 again, to complain about the message.

I guess the 911 operator was based out of communist Virginia. You can listen to the calls HERE.

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Palin Doesn't Know if Abortion Clinic Bombers are Terrorists

Palin isn't sure if bombers of abortion clinics are terrorists. From NBC:

Palin: Others who would want to engage in harming in innocent Americans or facilities, that uh, it would be unacceptable to...I don't know if you're going to use the word terrorist there.

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Opie/Richie, Andy and the Fonze for Obama

See more Ron Howard videos at Funny or Die

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Miss "Fake" Virginia Pissed at McCain finds an angry 3-time Miss Virginia ready to push back against the McCain campaign's comments that there is a "real" Virginia (as opposed to fake Virginia which mostly consists of the DC suburbs):

When McCain senior adviser Nancy Pfotenhauer divided Virginia into the DC suburbs and "real Virginia," Kristi Lauren Glakas felt extremely disappointed. Glakas, a recent three-time Miss Virginia title holder and whip-smart University of Virginia scholarship honor student, said the comments were divisive.

"What offended me and made me sad about those comments," said Glakas, a resident for many years in northern Virginia, "is that I've been to every county, every part of this state. What's best about Virginia is its diversity. The people, the geography. We have every class, every race, an amazing immigrant population... Virginia is the birthplace of America. To say that part of Virginia is not part of the real America is just offensive."

Glakas then threw in a shot at Palin, just for good measure:
The witty Glakas had the line of the day. Saying she was doing her level best to push back against the stereotypes set by other former pageant contestants Miss Teen South Carolina and Miss Alaska entrant Sarah Palin (formerly Sarah Heath), she pointed out that Palin's hiding from the press was a giant turnoff and gave beauty queens a bad name.

"Even I've been interviewed by Chris Matthews."

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No $150,000 Wardrobe Here

Andrew Sullivan turns up a photo of Obama in March of this year. Sullivan's friend took the photo and shares the following story:

Senator Obama was doing press interviews by telephone in a holding room between events. Sometime later as he was getting ready to begin his event, he asked me if I was photographing his shoes. When I said yes, he told me that he had already had them resoled once since he entered the race a year earlier. Providence, R.I., 3/1/2008.

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Hollywood Directors Make McCain Ads

Andrew Sullivan uncovers what McCain's ads would look like if they were directed by John Woo, Kevin Smith, and Wes Anderson.

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Daily Show: Project Beltway

The Daily Show takes a look at Palin's $150,000 wardrobe.

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Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Two Things That Made Me Cry Today

Perhaps I'm a bit overly emotional being three months pregnant and all, but here are two things that made me at least choke up a bit today.

First, Joe Biden talking about Obama's "long emotional journey" home to say goodbye to his ailing Grandmother. (Of the two of us, I would've bet any money on Biden crying before I did). If anyone's ever had to do that bedside goodbye, you feel for the guy.

Then there was this story from Politico, about a 90-year-old woman voting for Barack Obama:
For me the most moving moment came when the family in front of me, comprising probably 4 generations of voters (including an 18 year old girl voting for her first time and a 90-something hunched-over grandmother), got their turn to vote. When the old woman left the voting booth she made it about halfway to the door before collapsing in a nearby chair, where she began weeping uncontrollably. When we rushed over to help we realized that she wasn't in trouble at all but she had not truly believed, until she left the booth, that she would ever live long enough to cast a vote for an African-American for president.
Maybe it was mostly hormones, but I thought both were moving stories.

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McCain's Southern History

Fascinating bit of history chronicling McCain's great-great grandfather (who happened to be a slave owner) and the slaves who took on their owner's name, McCain, and continue to live in Mississippi where the McCain plantation once stood.

From the Wall Street Journal:

Lillie McCain is watching the presidential campaign from a singular perspective.

A 56-year-old psychology professor whose family spans five generations from the enslavement of her great-great-grandparents to her own generation's fight for civil rights, Ms. McCain appreciates the social changes that have opened the way for Sen. Barack Obama to be the first major-party black contender for the White House.

But she also has an uncommon view on another American passage. Ms. McCain and her siblings are descended from two of about 120 slaves held before the end of the Civil War at Teoc, the Mississippi plantation owned by the family of Republican nominee John McCain's great-great-grandfather.
read more.

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Matthews Sticks it to Palin

Chris Matthews was absolutely livid, indignant, and outraged that Sarah Palin continues to be unable to correctly define what it is the Vice President of the United States does. He grills Nancy Pfotenhauer for 8 solid minutes, taking several shots at Palin's $150,000 wardrobe along the way. Before playing the clip of Palin saying the Vice President is in charge of the U.S. Senate Matthews says, "I like the red leather jacket [that Palin's wearing], but I'm telling you what's underneath is a problem here."

You can see the best of Palin's attempts to explain the role of the Vice President HERE, HERE and HERE.

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Palin's $150,000 Wardrobe

Not too many people happy in the Republican party that the campaign spent $150,000 on dressing McCain's Caribou Barbie. From Ambinder:

There is already an attempt to blame the media -- as in, the liberal media would have looked askance at Palin if she wasn't clad in Neiman Marcus, but this won't wash. Republicans, RNC donors and at least one RNC staff member have e-mailed me tonight to share their utter (and not-for-attribution) disgust at the expenditures.

Politico broke the story finding that:
According to financial disclosure records, the accessorizing began in early September and included bills from Saks Fifth Avenue in St. Louis and New York for a combined $49,425.74.

The records also document a couple of big-time shopping trips to Neiman Marcus in Minneapolis, including one $75,062.63 spree in early September.
Read more about money spent on Palin HERE.

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Daily Show: McCain and the "S" Word

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Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Simpsons Predict Voter Fraud in West Virginia

A true story, followed by a Simpsons' episode that accurately predicted the shenanigans.

From the Charleston Gazette via Indecision 2008:

Shelba Ketchum, a 69-year-old nurse retired from Thomas Memorial Hospital, described what happened Friday at the Putnam County Courthouse in Winfield.

"I pushed buttons and they all came up Republican," she said. "I hit Obama and it switched to McCain. I am really concerned about that. If McCain wins, there was something wrong with the machines.

"I asked them for a printout of my votes," Ketchum said. "But they said it was in the machine and I could not get it. I did not feel right when I left the courthouse. My son felt the same way.

"I heard from some other people; they also had trouble. But no one in there knew how to fix it," said Ketchum, who is not related to Menis Ketchum, a Democratic Supreme Court candidate.

Ketchum's son, Chris, said he had the same problem. And Bobbi Oates of Scott Depot said her vote for incumbent Democratic Sen. Jay Rockefeller was switched to GOP opponent Jay Wolfe.

And the relevant Simpson episode:

Looks like FOX cracked down on the video and no one can see it now.


November 2nd, two days before the election, the Simpsons' Treehouse of Horror episode airs. It is believed that this clip is contained in that show. Keep reading if you want to know what happens.

It is election day, and Homer has decided to go vote. On one side of the street are signs for Obama and on the other, McCain signs. Homer goes in to vote and can't fit into the booth. They put him in the extra large one. He goes in, and a touch screen appears in front of him. Obama's name is on one side, McCain's the other. Homer decides to vote for Obama and pushes the box next to his name. A red check mark pops up next to John McCain's name. The machine says, "One vote for John McCain." Homer says, "Doh!" and tries to vote for Obama, again touching the screen next to his name. Again, a check mark appears in McCain's box. The machine says, "Two votes for McCain." Homer of course tries again and again, each time increasing McCain's votes. Finally, Homer decides he better tell someone, and starts to leave the voting booth. That's when the machine eats him to keep him from telling anyone.

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McCain Agrees with Dems that Western PA Sucks

McCain messes up his line in Western PA, and ends up saying, "Senator Obama's supporters have been saying some pretty nasty things about Western Pennsylvania lately. And you know, I couldn't agree with them more." Crickets. McCain went on to recover and say, Western Pennsylvania is, he says, "the most patriotic, most God-loving, most patriotic part of America." I wonder how Ohio feels about that...

Source: Politico

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Palin Not Qualified to Teach Third Graders

Palin, when asked by a second grader, "What does the Vice President do?" tells him that the Vice President is in charge of the Senate. Ironically, this is the very same question Palin was seeking an answer to earlier this year. Apparently, no one gave her an answer. Hint to Palin: Google may help you out on this one. Try searching, "Powers of Vice President."

I hope Brandon Garcia has adults at home that can correct the potential next Vice President of the United States. Someone should tell her what a Vice President does before she shows up to work and starts ordering Harry Reid around.


Harry Reid apparently felt the same way. His spokesman gives the following statement to Think Progress:
This comment is all the more puzzling because this is at least the 2nd time she has said this. Gov Palin needs to re-read or perhaps read for the first time the Constitution. While the Vice President presides over the Senate, he or she is not in charge of it. Article 1 says The Vice President of the United States shall be President of the Senate, but shall have no vote, unless they be equally divided.

The Senate is part of a co-equal branch of the federal government.

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"White America" Vows Not to Vote for a Black Man

This real America, pro-America, language is starting to take hold at McCain-Palin rallies. Politico reports a North Carolina congressman saying the following when talking about Sarah Palin at a McCain rally:

“Liberals hate real Americans that work and accomplish and achieve and believe in God.”

I don't know if this is funny or sad, but Jason Horowitz, who broke this story with his New York Observer article, talks to someone named "America Blanca" about the McCain campaign and whether she'd vote for Obama. That name, translated from Spanish into English, is "White America."
“I don’t believe these polls,” said America Blanca, a 44-year-old small business owner from Miami who wore a red dress and was visibly pumped up by the rally. “Not one of them. Because it’s the kids answering the polls on the computers. Their parents are not home and they are answering and they will not be voting. I think if he is losing, it is only by a little spread. Very little.” She held the tip of her pointer finger about two inches from the tip of her thumb.

Asked if her business made more than $250,000 a year, the cap under which Obama has proposed cutting taxes, she said it did. Told about Obama’s proposal, she answered, “I don’t give a shit. I will never vote for a black man.”
The irony.... Guess her parents knew what they were doing when they named her.

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McCain Proud of Flyer Linking Obama with Terror Attacks

Ben Smith at Politico catches this story. An RNC flyer shows a plane that looks like its about to slam into a building, apparently an airport. The picture on the flip side? Barack Obama. McCain was asked if he was proud of the flyer. He said, "Absolutely." Is there something I'm missing? I don't get the whole "I'm proud to link my opponent to terrorists" thing. It just seems like dumb, ineffective politics.

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Palin Ditches Muzzle

Sarah Palin isn't playing by the McCain campaign's rules any more. It seems that she wants to talk to the press and is tired of being told she can't, so she's just holding press conferences whether she has approval or not. The Times describes a comedic scene in Colorado:

After landing in Colorado Springs late Sunday, Ms. Palin marched over to a local television crew and began answering questions on camera, sending the traveling press corps sprinting in pursuit, and her press staff scrambling.

“Get Tracey,” one campaign aide barked into his headset, calling for Tracey Schmitt, Ms. Palin’s ever-watchful spokeswoman, who rushed over to supervise the impromptu press conference. (Ms. Schmitt, looking distressed, tried several times to cut it off with a terse “Thank you!” in between questions, to no avail.)
This is great news for Barack Obama and another sign of the McCain campaign coming off its wheels. Biden has remained fairly disciplined, although he did go a bit off the reservation the other day, as has much of the Obama campaign. McCain's people? Not so much.

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McCain Won't Let Muslim Campaign Worker Go on CNN

In a truly bizarre turn of events, the McCain campaign has taken their best shot at redemption and p***** all over it.

You may remember video from a rally this weekend where several young Muslim, McCain supporters (they do exist) confronted a man handing out anti-Islamic Obama literature at a McCain rally. A man from the McCain campaign, Daniel Zubairi, stepped up and intervened telling the man that his views did not represent the McCain campaign or the Constitution of the United States.

CNN was ready to hail Zubairi as a hero, and he was on the phone waiting for the interview, when the McCain camp yanked him and told him he didn't have permission to go on. From the Huffington Post:
"Wouldn't you think they would have wanted him to come on?" the CNN host would later tell the Huffington Post. "What the guy did was courageous. I called him heroic. I'm mystified why they wouldn't embrace him for his actions. Maybe they didn't like the story, but I'll tell you. I thought it was presented it in a very transparent way, if anything I kind of gushed philosophically about how impressive and real his reaction was to the protester's hateful message. It seemed to show some of the best of McCain supporters, didn't it?"

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Daily Show: Real America vs. Fake America

I think it's safe to say Jon Stewart was personally offended when Sarah Palin said she liked visiting the "pro-America" parts of the country (see his big "F*** You" to Palin). I think it has a little something to do with being the epicenter of the 9/11 attacks....

This is the first time I've heard the audio of Palin's "pro-America" remarks.

Make sure to take the quiz, are you a real American or a Fake American?, that's contained in the second video.

Stewart on Palin's comments:

What the Pf***? So if small towns are real America, that would make big cities like Washington DC and New York City the capitals of fake America. The epicenter of fake America. The, oh what's the word I'm looking for, the ground zero, if you will, of anti-America. I bet Bin Laden feels like a real asshole now. 'What, I bombed the wrong America? That's it. I'm going into hiding. I'm too embarrassed.'

I guess if you're from New York City and you signed up to fight in Iraq and died, it doesn't count.

Stewart on Rep. Bachmann's comments that Congress should be investigated to see whose anti-American (she's from Minnesota, McCarthy was from Wisconsin):

I think the only thing that could help the country now is if some Midwestern congressperson could form some type of subcommittee that could help us determine if these un-Americans are participating in any activities.

Update: Forgot to include this video earlier.
Stewart goes one further and sends Jason Jones back to Wasilla where he encounters residents who think the 9/11 attacks happened to them, and "just the devastation" happened in New York. Plus, if Palin is like the current Mayor of Wasilla, whom Jones interviews, God help us all.

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