Saturday, September 13, 2008
I wonder if Ike is really the reason Obama cancelled doing SNL. Doing SNL carries a lot of risk with almost no upside other than entertainment, and I wonder if team Obama decided that it just was not worth the risk considering where the polls are right now.
What business does Al Gore have terrorizing Barack Obama’s grandmother like that?
Palin ... has [to] juggle a lot of balls simultaneously:
1) She has to learn all this stuff quickly. Quick, how much do you really know about federal health care policy? I bet not a lot. Well, Palin has to master all this stuff in a short period of time.
2) She can't even express her own opinion on this stuff. Sometimes she can. But most often she has to view a question through two filters: What she herself believes and what the McCain position is (which is the position she ultimately must either adopt or at least defend).
3) She has to then be guarded about committing McCain to some position.
4) She has to watch out for the gotchas and soundbites that can be edited to make her sound bad.
That's a lot to think about every time a question is asked.
I am not the only one to notice that John McCain and Sarah Palin have gotten inside the Obama campaign's (and mainstream media's) OODA loop. Blogger Charlie Martin sprang into pixels on http://www.americanthinker.com/ before I could spring into print with this column.
The work of Classical Values predated the work of both Michael Barone and Charlie Martin.
Woodward argues that the secret technology and the so-called Anbar Awakening -- in which counterinsurgency techniques developed by the Marines won over tribal leaders in that crucial Sunni-dominated province -- had as much or more to do with stabilizing Iraq as the "surge" in U.S. troop numbers.
Beyond the purely military considerations, there are potentially significant political implications. First and most obvious is the question of the surge's efficacy. The answer matters, particularly to John McCain, who has been one of the surge's most resolute supporters. If it turns out that it was only one -- and, perhaps, the least consequential -- in a confluence of successful American initiatives, then McCain could go from steadfast to stubborn in voters' minds.
Nonsense. McCain politically benefits from any argument over the root cause of the victory in Iraq. McCain was adamant that defeat in Iraq was unacceptable while Obama essentially argued defeat was inevitable and acceptable. There is no way that this can be spun to McCain's detriment.
More of my thoughts on this subject are in my Bush was right? post.
Steven Hayward of the Weekly Standard quoting Thomas Jefferson:
Leave to the citizens the free election and separation of the aristoi from the pseudo-aristoi, of the wheat from the chaff. In general they will elect the really good and wise.
(via Power Line)
(via Glenn Reynolds)
I think Game Theory should become a basic component of the American public educational curricula. It is not a hard subject to grasp or to teach, and students will love it. Also, it will provide immense benefits for students in all areas of life.
I wish John McCain had responded:
The Republican party was born out the belief that slavery was our nation's greatest sin, and America could never be true to its founding ideals until slavery was purged from this land. And, if slavery were ever to rear its ugly head again, you can be certain that it would be the Republican party that would stay true to its founding ideals and lead the fight to preserve freedom and liberty for all. Now, as it was the Democratic party that was pro slavery, pro Jim Crow/Segregation, you might want to direct your question to Barrack Obama and the Democratic party.
Thursday, September 11, 2008
The dinosaurs that held dominion over the Earth in the Jurassic Period didn’t rule the lands because they out-competed every rival, a new study says.... Instead they may have just been lucky enough to survive a drastic climate shift when their rivalsAttributing it to luck seems like a cop out, but I am sure the scientist who published the study have more knowledge on the subject than I do.
I believe in evolution. I think it is scientifically sound. I think that creationism is a religious belief, and it is not the place of society to teach children the soundness of religious beliefs.
However, I think as a society, through the evolution of public policy and judicial rulings, we have set up a public education system that tells some parents that if they want their children to have the benefit of a public education that there children must be subjected to teachings that specifically say the parents religious beliefs are wrong. I think that is just as wrong as having public schools teaching religion.
There is a very easy way to avoid this (i.e., school vouchers), but unfortunately the Democratic Party and some judges have stood in the way of this public policy option.
Maybe the following questions/comments from Charlie Gibson are fair:
You said recently, in your old church, "Our national leaders are sending U.S. soldiers on a task that is from God." Are we fighting a holy war?
"There is a plan and it is God's plan."
But then are you sending your son on a task that is from God?
However, to me they would be akin to asking a Catholic "Are you going to take orders from the Pope?". I highly doubt Charlie Gibson would ever ask a Catholic if he is going to take orders from the Pope, so why does he feel it is appropriate to challenge Sarah Palin's religious beliefs.
I think she could have answered some of the questions more effectively, but overall, I think she did a very good job.
It appears that Mugabe is going to get away with his crimes against the Zimbabwean people.
Clearly, that is logical.
In answer to Glenn Reynolds question, my vote goes to the belief that Saddam Hussein and Al Qaeda had no connections whatsoever.
Update: Or maybe, Global Warming exists. Or, Global warming is man made.
The media are getting mad [at the McCain Campaign].Who could have guessed that would happen? Of course, I am assuming that every journalist is confident it has nothing to do with media bias, and any suggestion that it might be a product of media bias would make them incredulous.
News outlets are increasingly challenging false or questionable claims by the McCain campaign, whether it's the ad accusing Obama of supporting sex-ed for kindergartners (the Illinois legislation clearly describes "age-appropriate" programs)...What is "age-appropriate" sex education for a kindergartner? Why is inappropriate to point out that Obama supports "age-appropriate" sex education for kindergartners? And, if Obama supports "age-appropriate" sex education for kindergartners, why can't he define what it is (does it really take an act of the Illinois legislature to instruct teachers to avoid telling kindegartners that babies come from storks)?
...Palin's repeated boast that she stopped the Bridge to Nowhere (after she had supported it, and after Congress had effectively killed the specific earmark).True, but all of the facts paint a different picture than the one journalist are trying to sell.
But the bigger reason is that no one ... cares enough about lying.Using Kinsley's own logical construct: Michael Kinsley knows this statement is false. I can’t prove that, but it seems so obvious to me that it’s more like a fact than an opinion. Michael Kinsley has to know there are people who care about lying. Michael Kinsely's whole arguement is ginned up, a fraud, a lie. All obvious.
So, why is Micahel Kinsley lying? He is lying because he wants to silence an attack against Obama rather than letting people hear all of the evidence and decide for themselves whether there is merit in what McCain has to say.
Update: http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2008/09/the_first_and_last_word_on_lip.html The bobblehead choir nods in agreement.
Coast to coast, LA to Chicago, western male
Across the north and south, to Key Largo, love for sale
The smooth operator is going from LA to Key Largo with stops in between, which is coast to coast.
Doesn't this talking point imply that George Bush was right in his pre-surge strategy (i.e., stay the course and eventually things well turn in America's favor)?
A standard talking point for those who opposed the surge -- including Democrats Barack Obama and Joseph R. Biden Jr. -- is that success in Anbar resulted in large part from the turning of Sunni tribes against al-Qaeda, beginning before the surge.
via Ace of Spades
Another benefit to legalizing drugs is that it would be easier to win the war in Afghanistan. It appears the outcome may be in doubt.
We have free will. If we use it to choose to be happy and healthy, our bodies will respond.
It appears to me that Vince Young's emotional problems stem from playing quarterback and not from playing football. If his emotional distress is such that he no longer wants to play football, his friends and family should mention the example of Rick Ankiel, and ask him if he would still enjoy playing football at a position other than quarterback. If not, hopefully he will get the emotional support he needs to do what is best for him and walk away from football.
Update: http://msn.foxsports.com/nfl/story/8550254?MSNHPHMA Congratulations Jason Whitlock. When you are done patting yourself on the back, you might want to consider that there are things more important than football, like Vince Young's emotional health.
Update II: http://msn.foxsports.com/nfl/story/8551800
He says he was upset as he dealt with his first serious injury, and he didn't realize he had to tell his mother where he was going anymore.
At least he still has his sense of humor.
Sunday, September 7, 2008
Pakistan is a huge problem for which I have yet to hear a good solution.
As I was reading the article, the following paragraph struck out to me:
"They ride horses, Arabian horses; we don’t have horses like this in Waziristan," Jan said. "The people from the town take food to the Arabs’ horses in the mountains. They have seen the horses. They have seen the Arabs. These horses eat better than the common people in the town."Upon reading it, I thought: I hope the CIA is looking for Arabian horses. The horses are more likely to be out in the open than the Arabs, and with trained personnel, they should be easy to spot.
It's true that McCain has been a stronger advocate of free trade agreements than Obama, who supported the trade deal with Oman in 2006 and one with Peru in 2007 but opposed the one with Central America and another with Colombia. But saying he would "close" markets is nonsense.
Obama and the Democratic party are keeping the Columbia market (et al others) closed. I think McCain's comment was entirely fair.
The CFTA would significantly decrease the tax burden on Americans and increase American exports. The current trade agreement between the countries is set to run out on December 31, 2008. If the measure doesn’t come to the floor for a vote, it could expire under the 110th Congress.
Colombia has already signed and renegotiated their side of the agreement but the U.S. hasn’t finalized their end. Padilla said that if the Congress hasn’t acted by the December date, the Colombians will not have a preferential benefit any more.
Update: These fact checkers should really check their own website:
The memo says Obama's anti-NAFTA stance was described as just "political maneuvering," but the adviser says he said no such thing. The campaign says the adviser wasn't authorized to convey any message from the candidate anyway. No audio recording or verbatim transcript of the disputed conversation is available, and there’s no reason to expect that any exists. So the best we can do is to provide readers with the essential details as they have unfolded over the past several days, with links to original sources when available. On this one, you’ll have to be the judge.To summarize, Obama claims that he is anti-NAFTA (i.e., he wants to close markets). He is accused of "political maneuvering" (i.e., he wants to keep markets open). He denies it (i.e., he wants to close markets). The Annenberg Political Fact Check Organization says "you'll have to be the judge". Well, by any fair observer's definition, there should be enough evidence to say that John McCain's statement "[Obama] will close [markets]" is a fair political statement to use against Obama.
The simple fact of her being a pro-life married mother of five with a thriving political career was--before anything else about her was known--enough for the left and its outliers to target her for destruction. She could not be allowed to contradict symbolically one of the central narratives of the left. How galling it will be to Sarah Palin's many new enemies if she survives this assault and prevails. If she does, her success may be an important moment in the struggle to shape not just America's politics but its culture.
I think a simpler and probably more accurate explanation is that the left thought that Sarah Palin would be easy to destroy politically, and in the process, the attacks would fatally destroy McCain's candidacy. However, now that Sarah Palin has given back better than the left could give, the left is committed to destroying Sarah Palin, because if they do not, Obama's candidacy might be destroyed by the public perception that his presidential campaign and allies were bested by McCain's VP candidate.
“Now think about this coming from the party that’s been in charge for 8 years, they’ve been running the show,” Obama said. “John McCain brags, ‘90 percent of the time I have voted with George Bush. He and I, we were right there’ and suddenly he’s the change agent. Ha!
“What are these guys talking about?” Obama asked near the end of his riff. “Do you think we haven’t been paying attention over the past 8 years?”
Does not the past year and a half of Democratic party control of congress not count?
Supporting the surge was no more a huge courageous risk in a GOP primary than opposing the war was a huge courageous risk for Obama in a Dem primary.
Mickey Kaus's facts are right, but his conclusions are wrong. The only reason McCain was able to overcome his implosion was because the surge was successful. If the surge had not been successful, McCain would not be the GOP nominee right now.