September 10, 2008

jk Says Something Nice about Sen Biden

Mark your calendars - 9/10/08. This is a pretty classy escape:

When he got to Chuck Graham, a state senator from Green Meadows, Biden urged the lawmaker to "stand up Chuck, let 'em see ya."But Graham, who is in a wheelchair, can't stand up - a fact Biden quickly picked up on.

"God love ya, what am I talking about," Biden said. "You can tell I'm new," he quipped, asking the audience to stand up for Graham instead.

Hat-tip: The Corner

Posted by John Kranz at 1:16 PM | Comments (0)

August 26, 2008

Sue Me, Obama '08!

Bring poor ThreeSources the publicity we have been tantrumming for for four years.

Seriously. I was looking all day to see this ad that everybody is talking about and that the Obama campaign is suppressing. Here, thanks to Michelle Malkin (HT: Insty), is the footage:

Shield the children's eyes! Don’t let any impressionable people see it!

UPDATE; Awesome riff from Andy McCarthy at The Corner about Obama Calling on DOJ to Silence Ayers Criticism

The only two cents I'd add is that a real story — and one that should alarm people — is that this is what Obama thinks the Justice Department is for. Here is a guy who fought the Patriot Act, fought surveillance reform, has spoken admiringly of Ayer's radical views of the criminal justice system, and has a record as a Chicago legislator of being soft on violent crime. He is evidently ambivalent about going after terrorists and hardened criminals, but he wants to mobilize the Justice Department post haste to suppress political speech that he doesn't like.

I regard that as more than a little disconcerting from a guy who wants to be president, pick the next attorney-general, and make U.S. law enforcement policy. The McCain campaign may not be too anxious to mix it up on this one given McCain's own history of suppressing political speech. But that doesn't make it any less a story.

Posted by John Kranz at 6:42 PM | Comments (0)

Quote of the Day II

DB Light at the PA Water Cooler discusses Senator Obama's negative bounce, and finds a pretty good sobriquet for Senator Biden:

Some say it is those subversive Clintons wreaking their revenge for Obama’s choice of the Bloviator from Baja Pennsylvania as a running mate.

Posted by John Kranz at 4:37 PM | Comments (0)

Quote of the Day

An anonymous reader asks Don Luskin:

John Edwards has been barred from making a speech at the Democratic Convention because he had an adulterous affair and lied about it.
In his place, Bill Clinton will be speaking.

What am I missing?

Posted by John Kranz at 4:13 PM | Comments (1)
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

Not new. John Batchelor actually asked that a few Sundays ago, and others may have preceded him.

"John Edwards won't be speaking because he had sex and lied about it. So in his place, Bill Clinton will make a speech."

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at August 27, 2008 9:19 AM

August 25, 2008

I Ain't No Senator's Son!

Too bad it ain't me -- it doesn't seem like a bad gig:

During the years that Senator Joseph R. Biden Jr. was helping the credit card industry win passage of a law making it harder for consumers to file for bankruptcy protection, his son had a consulting agreement that lasted five years with one of the largest companies pushing for the changes, aides to Senator Barack Obama’s presidential campaign acknowledged Sunday.

Mr. Biden’s son, Hunter, received consulting fees from the MBNA Corporation from 2001 to 2005 for work on online banking issues. Aides to Mr. Obama, who chose Mr. Biden as his vice-presidential running mate on Saturday, would not say how much the younger Mr. Biden, who works as both a lawyer and lobbyist in Washington, had received, though a company official had once described him as having a $100,000 a year retainer. But Obama aides said he had never lobbied for MBNA and that there was nothing improper about the payments.

And there probably is nothing wrong here. But Ed Morrissey asks "Remember when Barack Obama wanted to change the manner business got conducted in Washington? If that seems a long time ago, it retreated further in the distance when Team Obama admitted yesterday that running mate Joe Biden had a son consulting MBNA, a credit company who had a lot to lose if a bankruptcy bill Obama opposed became law."
Hat-tip: Instapundit

Posted by John Kranz at 4:39 PM | Comments (1)
But Wayne thinks:

I have linked to your post, and a number of other posts from Biden Blogscan

Posted by: Wayne at August 25, 2008 10:14 PM

August 24, 2008

There's No 'O' in Unity!

I shouldn't post this. But I gotta:

Hat-tip: JammieWearingFool

Posted by John Kranz at 11:11 AM | Comments (0)

August 23, 2008

Why Aren't We Like China?

This might get lost in the excitement over Senator Joe Biden's joining the 2008 Democratic ticket (I know I'm finding it hard to concentrate!) but I hope the Republican Attack Machine® doesn’t allow it to get lost. I was reading about it yesterday, but it is much more potent on video:

Hat-tip: Riehl World View, which also provides a voice over for the GOP ad.

Posted by John Kranz at 12:21 PM | Comments (0)

August 21, 2008

The Company You Keep

ayers_flag.jpg A McCain Campaign Press Release from Rich Lowry:

“Barack Obama’s ad is ridiculous. Because of John McCain, corruption was exposed and people like Jack Abramoff went to jail.

“However, if Barack Obama wants to have a discussion about truly questionable associations, let’s start with his relationship with the unrepentant terrorist William Ayers, at whose home Obama’s political career was reportedly launched. Mr. Ayers was a leader of the Weather Underground, a terrorist group responsible for countless bombings against targets including the U.S. Capitol, the Pentagon and numerous police stations, courthouses and banks. In recent years, Mr. Ayers has stated, ‘I don’t regret setting bombs … I feel we didn’t do enough.’
“The question now is, will Barack Obama immediately call on the University of Illinois to release all of the records they are currently withholding to shed further light on Senator Obama’s relationship with this unrepentant terrorist?” —McCain spokesman Brian Rogers

William Ayers LATimes Blog

Posted by John Kranz at 11:51 AM | Comments (1)
But jk thinks:

Just 'cause he is standing on the flag, don't question his patriotism!

Posted by: jk at August 21, 2008 3:11 PM

August 19, 2008

Plague of Locusts

I don't link to Taranto too much because the ThreeSourcers I know live and die by BOTW. But I have to use a hometown/personal angle on this one. The second I heard that the Obama Ego was too big to be contained by the Pepsi Center and that the Senator would give his acceptance speech at Invesco, I thought of torrential downpours. It's not likely in late August, but nothing is impossible in Colorado. I guess I was right:

Denver's Rocky Mountain News reports on other possible disruptions:

Planners of Barack Obama's acceptance speech for the Democratic presidential nomination at Invesco Field may want to keep a weather-eye out for history of a different kind.
Think: grasshopper swarms blotting out the sun and lightening [sic] strikes, marble-size hail and 53 mph winds.
All these have occurred in the Denver area on Aug. 28 through recorded history, according to National Weather Service. . . .
Records show Aug. 28, 1875 was smack in the midst of a 12-day swarm of grasshoppers that "almost darkened the sun," blanketed streets, "devastated" Denverites' gardens and devoured ripening grain crops in the countryside..

I had also heard that Focus on the Family was jeered for suggesting that visitors to its website pray for rain. Folks, I am not a praying man and I know we've got all stripes around here. But a plague of locusts to darken the sun -- that's worth a little prayer.

Posted by John Kranz at 5:10 PM | Comments (3)
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

Let me know if you hear of talk about boils, water turning red threats to anyones' first-born. Where's Moses when you need him?

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at August 19, 2008 7:10 PM
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

We're talking Old Testament, Mr. Mayor, real wrath of God type stuff. Fire and brimstone coming down from the skies! Rivers and seas boiling! Forty years of darkness! Earthquakes, volcanoes! The dead rising from the grave! Human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together, mass hysteria!

Or if you want to go to Revelation 9: "And the fifth angel sounded, and I saw a star fall from heaven unto the earth: and to him was given the key of the bottomless pit. And he opened the bottomless pit; and there arose a smoke out of the pit, as the smoke of a great furnace; and the sun and the air were darkened by reason of the smoke of the pit. And there came out of the smoke locusts upon the earth: and unto them was given power, as the scorpions of the earth have power."

Note that the locusts and other tribulations precede the coming of the Beast.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at August 20, 2008 10:09 AM
But jk thinks:

Gimme that old time religion.

Posted by: jk at August 20, 2008 10:31 AM

August 18, 2008

The Thomas-Obama Smackdown!!!

Maybe it was a gaffe: the WSJ Ed page piles on:

And no wonder Mr. Obama's advisers have refused invitations for more such open forums, preferring to keep him in front of a teleprompter, where he won't let slip what he really believes.

Thus endeth the editorial that says by all means, let's compare Clarence Thomas's record with Senator Obama's:
So let's see. By the time he was nominated, Clarence Thomas had worked in the Missouri Attorney General's office, served as an Assistant Secretary of Education, run the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and sat for a year on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, the nation's second most prominent court. Since his "elevation" to the High Court in 1991, he has also shown himself to be a principled and scholarly jurist.

Meanwhile, as he bids to be America's Commander in Chief, Mr. Obama isn't yet four years out of the Illinois state Senate, has never held a hearing of note of his U.S. Senate subcommittee, and had an unremarkable record as both a "community organizer" and law school lecturer. Justice Thomas's judicial credentials compare favorably to Mr. Obama's Presidential résumé by any measure. And when it comes to rising from difficult circumstances, Justice Thomas's rural Georgian upbringing makes Mr. Obama's story look like easy street.

Even more troubling is what the Illinois Democrat's answer betrays about his political habits of mind. Asked a question he didn't expect at a rare unscripted event, the rookie candidate didn't merely say he disagreed with Justice Thomas. Instead, he instinctively reverted to the leftwing cliché that the Court's black conservative isn't up to the job while his white conservative colleagues are.

Majority Leader Reid went down this road and was unable to offer any backing for his contentions that Justice Thomas's opinions were not well crafted. I hope future debate panelists and journalists will push this one against Obama as well.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:30 AM | Comments (0)

August 17, 2008

Buy American, Vore Obama

I blog on the shoulders of giants today:
The new Obama logo (the seal wasn't stupid enough??????)

Courtesy of Riehl World View

George Carlin:

Courtesy of Tigerhawk.

Posted by John Kranz at 4:39 PM | Comments (0)

August 14, 2008

Denver Hippies to Mini-Gitmo

Hard to top Allahpundit's opener regarding the prison conditions awaiting DNC protesters.

“Very bare bones and very reminiscent of a political prisoner camp or a concentration camp,” says one Code Pink member after viewing the footage; subtract the crematoria, starvation, back-breaking labor, and any real possibility of being locked up for longer than a few hours and you’ll see the harrowing truth in her words.

Posted by AlexC at 12:14 AM | Comments (1)
But jk thinks:

Oh yeah, I need to see if they have any part-time guard positions. Maybe take a week off work and do a little Abu-Ghraibing in my old hometown!

Posted by: jk at August 14, 2008 10:58 AM

August 8, 2008

There actually were 17 Americas

John Edwards repeatedly lied during his Presidential campaign about an extramarital affair with a novice filmmaker, the former Senator admitted to ABC News today.

I like the first eight words: "John Edwards repeatedly lied during his Presidential campaign..."

Posted by John Kranz at 4:09 PM | Comments (0)

July 24, 2008

The Denver Convention

If I were a dirty hippie, I would still not breathe easy.

Denver officials expect to spend more than $18 million on police equipment for the Democratic National Convention — but the purchases apparently won't include high-tech weapons that use sonic waves to incapacitate protesters or goo guns to immobilize them.

That information, provided by the city to the American Civil Liberties Union as part of an agreement to delay a public records lawsuit, marks one of the most detailed looks yet at the super-secret efforts to provide security for the convention, scheduled Aug. 25 to 28.

The ACLU sued Denver in May under the state's public records law after city officials refused to provide documents showing how they were spending millions of dollars on police equipment.

I guess that still means fire hoses and dogs are still budgeted.

Posted by AlexC at 11:45 AM | Comments (1)
But jk thinks:

Wasn't "The Goo Guns" one of those 80's big hair bands?

Posted by: jk at July 24, 2008 1:10 PM

July 7, 2008

Now That's Nuance!

I wondered whether my mad lefty brother was getting a little upset with Senator Obama as he tacked to the right. He's not angry enough to be a Kos kid, but he is true believer in collectivism.

Well another email thread pried out the truth. He applauds the Junior Senator from Illinois for his (wait for it...) "nuance."

I don't want to beat up my brother here, but the reviews are rolling in, and they're not too good. It seems all those mad right wingers: Mark Halperin, Ted Koppel, George Stephanopoulos, Mara Liasson, and Juan Williams were all critical. Here's Juan Williams:

My sense is, though, along the lines of the Wall Street Journal editorial this week that said who would have guessed that Barack Obama is legitimizing George Bush’s — and the whole notion of George Bush’s position on Iraq, and the whole notion of a third term for Bush, because he’s picked up not just on Iraq, but on things like faith- based initiative, even on the abortion question, which I — it was befuddling to me. He says suddenly, you know, mental distress is not a basis for a woman to have an abortion. I mean, that’s going to outrage people on the left. So what it seems to me is you could say on Iraq it’s a matter of emphasis. All along he has said he would take into consideration the position of the commanders in the field. But the heart and soul — I mean, the heart of his campaign has been to say, “This is an unpopular war. It’s a war that was ill- conceived. We never should have gone in there. We have put too much money in there. We have spent too much of our precious blood there.” And suddenly he’s saying, “No, no, you know what? I’m going to refine my position.”

I watched Williams make that statement on FOX News Sunday yesterday. I was struck by the fact that four, fairly bright pundits (Fred Barnes, Mara Liasson, Bill Kristol, Juan Williams) who do this for a living -- none of the four had any idea what direction a President Obama would take. Liasson quotes Paul Krugman:
I mean, Paul Krugman, who’s a liberal columnist, wrote this week, “Gee, is he a centrist just masquerading as someone who’s a transformational progressive figure or is he really the opposite?” You know, people just don’t know. He’s a blank slate.

Dude promised change.

Posted by John Kranz at 12:50 PM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

"Change:" The new 'one-a-day' supplement from Obamaceuticals.

Just wait until he's elected when in many cases he can be expected to change back again.

Posted by: johngalt at July 7, 2008 3:51 PM
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

It took the leftists 18 years to acknowledge the truth about the Clintons (i.e., they will say and do anything to get elected). There is evidence that they're learning a similar lesson about Obama a bit faster. This column is another example of left-wing disillusionment with Obama. The left will not abandon him at the polls, but the moderates may figure out that he's just another politician who's principles extend no further than the current audience.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at July 8, 2008 2:54 PM

June 30, 2008

Headline of the Day

Some guy named AlexC at PA Water Cooler:

Not the Wesley Clark I Knew

Here’s a statement from Obama spokesman Bill Burton on Wes Clark’s controversial comments about McCain’s military service. “As he’s said many times before, Senator Obama honors and respects Senator McCain’s service, and of course he rejects yesterday’s statement by General Clark.”

Posted by John Kranz at 4:30 PM | Comments (0)

June 29, 2008

The Obama Mind Trick

Suddenly, it all makes sense.

(tip to Blonde Sagacity)

Posted by AlexC at 12:38 PM | Comments (0)

June 26, 2008

jk Defends Senator Obama

Swiftboating. The term deserves its place in the language and history, but not as Senator John Kerry and the Democratic Party define it. In their version, to swifboat is to propagate lies about a candidate in such volume that they cannot be rebutted (McCain's "100 years in Iraq" or "Third Bush Term" come to mind but I haven't time to digress).

I would define switboating as "taking legitimate criticism one step too far, thereby diminishing its efficacy." John O'Neill and The Swiftboaters had several substantive and legitimate points to raise in criticism of Senator Kerry and his use of his war record in politics. T. Boone Pickens has still not paid his $1 million bounty for positive disproof.

Yet I think most of us agree that they went a little too far, denigrating his service, and levying accusations that were impossible to prove or disprove. In the end, these weakened their arguments, calling all of them into question.

I would also accuse Special Prosecutor Ken Starr of this in the Clinton Impeachment. Judge Starr thought the laundry list of infractions in the footnotes would bolster his case with their sheer volume. Yet opponents pointed to them to portray his entire case as frivolous and unsubstantial.

Today, Gateway Pundit posts, and Instapundit links, to yet another "Another One Under the Bus" for Senator Obama.

Mike Klonsky, the Maoist Hardliner, Obama supporter and former best friend of the Weatherman terrorist group founders William Ayers and Bernadine Dohrn, received a $175,000 grant from the William Ayers/Barack Obama-led Annenberg Challenge to run the Small Schools Workshop.

Klonsky had a blog that has been "airbrushed" off the Obama site. Yes, Klonsky is a piece of work, yes, it was likely a mistake to let him blog on the official site.

Yet GP fails to prove that Klonsky was ever in the Obama circle. He received a grant from Ayers and Obama's Annenberg Challenge "to run the Small Schools Workshop." A little embarrassing, but this is no Reverend Wright, Professor Goolsbee, or even racist granny. This is more like Rev. Hagee and Senator McCain. Because a whackjob may support a candidate does not make said candidate responsible. Having a blog at the hip, Web 2.0 Obama campaign is not really an official designation.

Let's not diminish the serious and serial examples of bad judgment and under-the-busism that Senator Obama has displayed by reaching too far.

Posted by John Kranz at 12:23 PM | Comments (1)
But Terri thinks:

I'll back you on this defense JK.

Posted by: Terri at June 26, 2008 1:54 PM

June 23, 2008

In Hock To Big Corn

The NYTimes today offers a non-fawning look at Senator Obama's ties to and support of the Ethanol industry. In a by-lined piece, Larry Richter sees a hint of pandering behind his surprise ascent in Iowa last year.

Mr. Obama is running as a reformer who is seeking to reduce the influence of special interests. But like any other politician, he has powerful constituencies that help shape his views. And when it comes to domestic ethanol, almost all of which is made from corn, he also has advisers and prominent supporters with close ties to the industry at a time when energy policy is a point of sharp contrast between the parties and their presidential candidates.

In the heart of the Corn Belt that August day, Mr. Obama argued that embracing ethanol “ultimately helps our national security, because right now we’re sending billions of dollars to some of the most hostile nations on earth.” America’s oil dependence, he added, “makes it more difficult for us to shape a foreign policy that is intelligent and is creating security for the long term.”

With all respect, Senator, ethanol subsidies make it more difficult for us to shape a domestic policy that is intelligent and creates energy for the long term.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:16 AM | Comments (0)

June 11, 2008

'nother One Under The Bus!


Jim Johnson, the former head of Fannie Mae who was leading Barack Obama's vice presidential search when his favorable loans with Countrywide were revealed, is stepping down from the Obama campaign to avoid becoming a distraction.

In a statement just issued from the Obama campaign headquarters in Chicago moments ago, the candidate sought to minimize the impact of the embarrassing episode.

Got any more of those cookies, Grandma?

Hat-tip: Instapundit

Posted by John Kranz at 4:39 PM | Comments (2)
But AlexC thinks:

"This is not the Jim Johnson, I knew"

Posted by: AlexC at June 11, 2008 4:57 PM
But jk thinks:

The WSJ Ed Page imitates ThreeSources:

It turns out that Jim Johnson was not the man Barack Obama thought he knew. The presumptive Democratic Presidential nominee threw the former Fannie Mae CEO over the side as his Vice Presidential vetter yesterday, only a day after he'd said that Mr. Johnson was only "tangentially related" to his campaign and that criticism was a "game that can be played."

Posted by: jk at June 12, 2008 3:11 PM

June 10, 2008

Goolsbee Crawls Out From Under The Bus!

Obama advisor Austan Goolsbee laid low after he was caught telling the truth to the Canadian government at an inconvenient time. (You can call it laid low, I call it Another One under the Bus!)

He is back, to call for more regulation of Investment Banking:

Austan Goolsbee, an economics professor at the University of Chicago and one of Sen. Obama's closest advisers on economic issues, said the senator believed strongly in enhanced regulation of any financial institution that has access to the Fed's discount window.

"If you can borrow money from the U.S. taxpayer at a moment of crisis, that is a very sacred insurance policy underwritten by the U.S. taxpayer," said Mr. Goolsbee in an interview last week with Dow Jones Newswires. "We have the right to oversee anyone who is accessing that insurance policy."...

Mr. Goolsbee said that an Obama presidency would ensure that investment banks are regulated as closely as commercial banks.

Hat-tip: N. Gregory Mankiw, who asks "Remember when the University of Chicago used to be the intellectual center of the deregulation movement? No more."

To be fair, if these firms are given access to the discount window, even I must admit a little regulation is in order. Here's hoping -- as does Mankiw -- that firms will be able to opt out of the government put and the concomitant regulation.

Posted by John Kranz at 12:01 PM | Comments (0)

June 9, 2008

The Last Word on "The Speech"

Mark Steyn knocks it outta the park:

Speaking personally, I don’t want to remake America. I’m an immigrant and one reason I came here is because most of the rest of the western world remade itself along the lines Sen. Obama has in mind. This is pretty much the end of the line for me. If he remakes America, there’s nowhere for me to go — although presumably once he’s lowered sea levels around the planet there should be a few new atolls popping up here and there.

Marc Ambinder is right. Obama’s rhetoric is in a different “emotional register” from John McCain’s. It’s in a different “emotional register” from every U.S. president — not just the Coolidges but the Kennedys, too. Nothing in Obama’s resume suggests he’s the man to remake America and heal the planet.

Must. All of it. Read.

Hat-tip: Don Luskin

Posted by John Kranz at 5:17 PM | Comments (0)

Change We Can Believe In!

I read a little about this, but commenter Wayne has an awesome roundup:

Obama pulls Antisemitic page from site - More work to do

I truly recommend reading Jonah Goldberg's book while the Obama campaign progresses; it's like reading a book and seeing the movie.

Posted by John Kranz at 3:35 PM | Comments (1)
But Wayne from Jeremiah Films thinks:

Thanks for the link

Posted by: Wayne from Jeremiah Films at June 13, 2008 2:18 AM

June 7, 2008

Senator Obama, Lightworker.

SF Chronicle columnist Mark Morford is not quite as in the bag for Senator O as Chris Matthews, but he's getting close:

Many spiritually advanced people I know (not coweringly religious, mind you, but deeply spiritual) identify Obama as a Lightworker, that rare kind of attuned being who has the ability to lead us not merely to new foreign policies or health care plans or whatnot, but who can actually help usher in a new way of being on the planet, of relating and connecting and engaging with this bizarre earthly experiment. These kinds of people actually help us evolve. They are philosophers and peacemakers of a very high order, and they speak not just to reason or emotion, but to the soul.

Grab an empty, high capacity barf bag and read the whole thing. Morford realizes exactly how insane he sounds but doesn't take the opportunity to dial it down.

Not sure how Senator McCain will be able to collect the Lightworker vote once this gets out -- Marin County is likely lost.

Hat-tip: Instapundit

Posted by John Kranz at 2:41 PM | Comments (0)

June 6, 2008

Another One Under The Bus

I ran across a clever riff on the Stones' "Under My Thumb the other day from Don Surber. I like the Stones but I am thinking we might turn instead to Queen's "Another One Rides the Bus:" [PLEASE READ UPDATE]

And another one's gone and another one's gone -- Another one under the bus!

Because I think this is going to be a recurring theme. Who's thrown under the bus today, Senator? Today it seems to be...wait for it...the sovereign nation of Israel:
"Let me be clear," said Obama from the podium at the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) in Washington on Wednesday, "Israel's security is sacrosanct. It is non-negotiable. The Palestinians need a state that is contiguous and cohesive and that allows them to prosper. But any agreement with the Palestinian people must preserve Israel's identity as a Jewish State, with secure, recognized and defensible borders. Jerusalem will remain the capital of Israel and it must remain undivided," he declared.

Responding to Obama's remarks, a livid Abbas told reporters, "This statement is totally rejected. The whole world knows that holy Jerusalem was occupied in 1967 and we will not accept a Palestinian state without having Jerusalem as the capital."

By Thursday Obama was quickly backpedaling, telling reporters "Well, obviously it's going to be up to the parties to negotiate a range of these issues. And Jerusalem will be part of those negotiations… As a practical matter, it would be very difficult to execute [a policy of the capital remaining undivided.]"

And another one's gone, another one's gone...Scoot over Grandma, Reverend, Professor Goolsbee, Trinity United -- we gotta make room for a whole country here.

Hat-tip: Hugh Hewitt

UPDATE: Don Surber sends a nice email that reminded me "rides the Bus" is itself a Weird Al parody of Queen's "Another One Bites the Dust." I have internalized Weird Al enough that I forgot the first level of indirection. I also still sing the Police song as "King of Suede..."

Posted by John Kranz at 12:02 PM | Comments (3)
But AtTheWaterCooler thinks:

Right, was his recent comments in the AM or PM?

Obama vacillating positions on Israel

Posted by: AtTheWaterCooler at June 6, 2008 9:53 PM
But johngalt thinks:

The good people of Israel must view American politician's pronouncements on their futures with the same disdain most Americans feel toward the United Nations efforts to madate US law: Israel has every right to secure its borders by force, even when that requires extending those borders further into the former territory of invading neighbors; the United States has every right to maintain its federal Constitution, particularly the Second Amendment, despite a collectivist global appetite for worldwide gun "control."

Posted by: johngalt at June 7, 2008 4:10 PM
But Wayne from Jeremiah Films thinks:

The Obama site just took down some Antisemitic posts they have more to go ...

Posted by: Wayne from Jeremiah Films at June 9, 2008 1:01 PM

June 4, 2008

Starting to Miss Hillary...

I pride ThreeSources on objectivity. I'm a self-admitted partisan hack, and we all have strong feelings. But I think we do a pretty good job of avoiding personal attacks and promoting polity based on "feelings."

One cannot avoid gathering a little antipathy, however, against philosophical and political opponents, especially when one feels they are not honest interlocutors. When the primaries started, I didn’t know if I could stand four years of Senator Clinton. She combines dirigisme with disingenuousness -- without even having the decency to be good at it as was her husband. That fake point and smile from the podium causes physical pain every time.

I will admit -- contra ThreeSources style -- that I am developing deep and visceral feelings for Senator Obama. His speech last night annoyed me to no end.

His lips would move and I would hear "Government, government, government!" followed by "Me, me, me!" Everybody said it was a great speech. I'd admit it was well delivered and well scripted (and would somebody please get Senator McCain a make up person?) but I am not sure it was a great speech.

He thinks CAFE standards are the solution for "the guy who lost his job and can't afford the gas to drive around and find a new one." He thinks government will do a better job developing new energy sources than private industry. I have news for the Senator. The biggest "Special interest in Washington" is government -- try fighting that one for a while.

The cheering crowds make good TV, but I am in the middle of Jonah Goldberg's Liberal Fascism right now and am easily wigged by the scripted crowd control and the Messianic approach of Senator Obama.

Will this nation fall for it? I fear so. Like the Progressive Era and the New Deal, we will likely survive it. But a huge hunk of liberty will be taken away and never restored.

We now return to objective, rational discussion. ThreeSources apologizes for the ad hominem attack.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:15 AM | Comments (1)
But Terri thinks:

I think you were VERY objective. Much unlike the papers.

Posted by: Terri at June 4, 2008 11:15 AM

May 30, 2008

Obama: The Hits Keep Coming

Another problem from Obama's Church.

When did churches become so political at the pulpit? As a life long active Catholic, I've never seen that style of preaching.

In the video, Pfleger wipes his eyes with a handkerchief and suggests Clinton wept because she thought that as a white person and the wife of a former president, she was entitled to the presidency.

"And then, out of nowhere, came 'Hey, I'm Barack Obama,' " Pfleger said during a sermon Sunday at Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, Illinois. "And [Clinton] said, 'Oh damn, where did you come from? I'm white! I'm entitled! There's a black man stealing my show!' " Watch Pfleger mock Clinton »

The video shows the congregation laughing and cheering.

Senator Chope did distance himself from the comments, saying he was "deeply disappointed."

In not entirely unrelated news
, in 1996, then Citizen Barack Obama sought (and received) the endorsement of a Marxist third party for his State Senate run.
The New Party's modus operandi included the political strategy of "electoral fusion," where it would nominate, for various political offices, candidates from other parties (usually Democrats), thereby enabling each of those candidates to occupy more than one ballot line in the voting booth. By so doing, the New Party often was able to influence candidates' platforms. (Fusion of this type is permitted in seven states -- Connecticut, Delaware, Idaho, Mississippi, New York, South Carolina, and Vermont -- but is common only in New York.)

Though Illinois was not one of the states that permitted electoral fusion, in 1995 Barack Obama nonetheless sought the New Party's endorsement for his 1996 state senate run. He was successful in obtaining that endorsement, and he used a number of New Party volunteers as campaign workers.

In the meantime, Hillary is slugging back whiskey as the last days of her campaign wind down, looking forward to the "i told ja sos" and 2012.

Posted by AlexC at 11:26 AM | Comments (1)
But jk thinks:

It's okay, ac, he has left Trinity Church. You are now forbidden from mentioning it.

Posted by: jk at June 1, 2008 11:50 AM

May 23, 2008

The People's Choice: Hillary!

The Inquirer's Jonathan Last continues to crunch the numbers.

[C]ould Clinton take over the lead in all of the popular-vote tabulations? Quite possibly. In Puerto Rico's last major election, two million people voted. Let's assume that turnout for this historic vote - Puerto Rico has never had a presidential primary before - will be equal to or greater than that turnout.

If Clinton were to win Puerto Rico by 20 points she would pick up at least a 400,000-vote margin. This would allow her to swamp Obama in the popular-vote counts, which include Florida, making her the leader in four of the six permutations of the popular vote. At that point, Obama would be left clinging to the least-inclusive count, which he now leads by 441,558 votes (551,780, including caucuses).

To understand how razor-thin this majority is, consider that if the Puerto Rico turnout is slightly larger than we have imagined - or Clinton's margin is slightly greater - then Clinton would finish the primary process leading in every conceivable vote count. With two million voters, a 28 percent victory would put Clinton over the top even in the count, which excludes Florida and Michigan and includes estimates for Obama's caucus victories.

It is this looming prospect which explains the tremendous pressure Obama partisans and the media are putting on Clinton to drop out of the race. They want her gone now because they understand that she has an excellent chance of finishing as the undisputed people's choice.

Best takeaway line?
Clinton's path is both obvious and simple: Win the popular vote and force Barack Obama and his cheerleaders to explain why that doesn't matter.

If winning the popular vote mattered in 2000, surely it must still matter!


Posted by AlexC at 2:33 PM

May 22, 2008

Picking Obama's Running Mate

The AP reports:

Obama has asked former Fannie Mae CEO Jim Johnson to begin vetting potential vice presidential picks, Democratic officials said Thursday. Johnson did the same job for Democratic nominees John Kerry in 2004 and Walter Mondale in 1984.

To the Dems, failure marks success. You can't lose 'em all! Right?

Posted by Harrison Bergeron at 11:35 PM | Comments (2)
But AlexC thinks:

What happened to "change" ?

Picking a long time Democrat loser isn't really change.

Posted by: AlexC at May 23, 2008 2:37 PM
But jk thinks:

Edwards and Ferraro brought so much to their tickets, you can't ignore success like that.

Posted by: jk at May 26, 2008 6:37 PM

May 19, 2008

Iran Poses No Serious Threat

Whew. I was worried about Iran, but I have just learned that it is a "tiny" country (compared to the Soviet Union) and it "does not pose a threat to us" (again, the threshold is set to C.C.C.P.)

Tell the truth, now, don't you feel a litte stupid for worrying?

Hat-tip: Hugh Hewitt

Posted by John Kranz at 6:22 PM | Comments (2)
But Boulder Refugee thinks:

If Barack equates the threat of Iran with the Soviet Union, does that mean he wants to have another Cold War? Fail to halt their nuclear ambitions and that's what we'll have - at best.

Posted by: Boulder Refugee at May 20, 2008 10:56 PM
But HB thinks:

I am not in the camp that is afraid of Iran. Nevertheless, only the orgasmic orator, the soothing sophisticate, the captain of charisma, the inexperienced ... well, you get the point .. could have made such a ridiculous statement in support of this viewpoint.

Posted by: HB at May 23, 2008 12:00 AM

Okay, Now I'm Offended

Not really. More Amused. The man who puts the "Junior" in Junior Senator from Illinois said:

"What it says is that I'm not very well known in that part of the country," Obama said. "Sen. Clinton, I think, is much better known, coming from a nearby state of Arkansas. So it's not surprising that she would have an advantage in some of those states in the middle."

I laughed earlier at this map. "Can the man who wants to be President please tell us why Arkansas is somehow closer to Kentucky than Illinois?"

Ann Althouse has a virtual link to Mickey Kaus, wondering about the implicit condescension of those "states in the middle."

This guy has political gifts but they have so far masked his tin ear. Perhaps his $500/hr handlers can tease that out of him in time for the General Election.

But perhaps not. Reporting from Colorado, this is jk...

Hat-tip: Instapundit

Posted by John Kranz at 3:18 PM

May 18, 2008

Fine with me, Sweetie!

At this rate, I'll be endorsing Obama pretty soon...

Let the record show that Senator Obama's calling a reporter "sweetie" does not disqualify him from the Presidency. Bridget Johnson is a bit disturbed. She thinks it is part and parcel of an arrogant attitude:

To properly assess Sweetiegate, you have to go back and fill in the blanks. Obama was not addressing Agar with any measure of affection; rather, he was annoyed that she was interrupting his grandstanding with a question and thus waved her off.

ABC News highlighted an earlier use of “sweetie” by Obama on the campaign trail, telling a woman, “Sweetie, if I start with a picture I will never get out of here,” and “Sweetie, if I start doing autographs I just won’t be -… I am really late.”

Sweetie, don’t you know what a star I am? Don’t you know I can’t be bothered, honeykins.

Johnson has a good style, but points out "If John McCain had called a reporter "sweetie" he'd be castigated as a dirty old man hurling sexist remarks." Perhaps. I think they both have different personalities and can each get away with different things.

It is not going to be a pretty election year for a lover of liberty, but my one hope is that we might have an ideological election. Senator Obama wants to expand the size, scope, power, and cost of government. Senator McCain is not Jeffersonian, but he is pushing reduced spending, lower taxes, free trade, and a free market solution to health care.

I'll call Senator Obama a pile of names, but Misogynist ain't one. If the father of two little girls cannot shake the habit of calling women "sweetie," I'm prepared to deal with it.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:33 AM | Comments (1)
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

A GOP senator refers to Obama as "that boy," which wasn't even in a racist context but to highlight Obama's foreign policy inexperience, and every politically correct schmuck wants to lynch him.

Obama calls a reporter "sweetie," so where's the outrage from NOW?

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at May 19, 2008 11:55 AM

May 16, 2008

Dude's Just Humble

Ed Driscoll realizes this doesn't quite rise to Snipergate, but still highlights this video that contradicts a well worn Stump speech:

I'll give him a pass on the tergiversation (my new word of the day, thanks Joe Queenan), but not the brazen assertion that it is okay for Government to dictate the lineup and features on automobiles.

Senator Obama is right if he claims that I wasn’t clapping.

Hat-tip: The Corner

Posted by John Kranz at 7:28 PM

May 10, 2008

The United States of Heinz

57 flavors, baby!

I'm going to go out on a limb here and say George "I'm a Dummy" Bush never thought we had 57 states. There really is no excuse.

Tip to Dean Barnett who writes:

This faux pas is beyond weird; I know the guy is tired, but “How many states are there in America?” is the kind of question they ask you at the hospital after you've had a seizure to see if your brain is still working. I speak from personal experience on this matter, by the way. When I had a random seizure in 1996, the guy at the emergency room asked me how many states there were and then who was president. I responded with a ten minute rant on Whitewater - he urgently ordered up more tests.

Posted by AlexC at 12:13 AM | Comments (4)
But jk thinks:

The youngest candidate in the race. You're right, if W said that, it would be a book title; if Senator McCain said it, it would be conclusive proof that he was too old.

Posted by: jk at May 10, 2008 2:43 PM
But jk thinks:

Maximum Heh: Patriotic Barack Obama lapel pins unveiled honoring all 57 states

Posted by: jk at May 10, 2008 2:49 PM
But johngalt thinks:

When clicking on "The Empire Strikes Barack" YouTube video resulted in a 'We're sorry, this video is no longer available' message I thought it was just a flaky source. When I got the same thing clicking on this Obama video I wondered if there are any less than flattering Obama videos left in the world!

Posted by: johngalt at May 11, 2008 12:01 PM
But jk thinks:

Hmm - you might try again. I got both of them this morning. (Empire Strikes Barack is actually an anti-Hillary video -- young Barack Skywalker is presented quite favorably.)

Posted by: jk at May 11, 2008 1:18 PM

May 8, 2008

Quote of the Day

People who are unstoppable and ambitious, and psychopathically power-worshipping, are not bruised by a little thing like North Carolina or Indiana. -- Christopher Hitchens
From an interview with Hugh Hewitt.

I approve of his word choice, but disagree. I will proudly stand with the conventional wisdom that Senator Clinton's campaign is toast. I don't know the exit point, but it is over. To paraphrase ac: if she's lost McGovern, she's lost the Democrats.

Posted by John Kranz at 1:36 PM

May 5, 2008

You Can't Make This Up!

Mark Halperin, Time:

Hillary Clinton enthusiastically picked a filly named Eight Belles to win the Kentucky Derby and compared herself to the horse. Eight Belles finished second. The winner was the favorite, Big Brown.

Eight Belles collapsed immediately after crossing the finish line, and was euthanized shortly thereafter.

Hat-tip: Mickey Kaus who fears this is "a thought born embalmed as a cliché, already tiresome from anticipated over-expression before being sincerely expressed in the first place"

I ain't afraid of no cliché -- ain't a cliché that can't be rode!

Posted by John Kranz at 12:10 PM

May 4, 2008

Dumbest. Plan. Ever. WSJ's Take.

Here's what the WSJ editorial page has to say about Obama's election year plan to lower gas prices by raising the marginal corporate tax on oil companies ABOVE it's present level of 35%:

Mr. Obama is right to oppose the gas-tax gimmick, but his idea is even worse. Neither proposal addresses the problem of energy supply, especially the lack of domestic oil and gas thanks to decades of Congressional restrictions on U.S. production.


Last week Pennsylvania Congressman Paul Kanjorski introduced a windfall profits tax as part of what he called the "Consumer Reasonable Energy Price Protection Act of 2008."

And about energy policy politics in general:

This tiff over gas and oil taxes only highlights the intellectual policy confusion – or perhaps we should say cynicism – of our politicians. They want lower prices but don't want more production to increase supply. They want oil "independence" but they've declared off limits most of the big sources of domestic oil that could replace foreign imports. They want Americans to use less oil to reduce greenhouse gases but they protest higher oil prices that reduce demand. They want more oil company investment but they want to confiscate the profits from that investment. And these folks want to be President?

But there is hope:

Late this week, a group of Senate Republicans led by Pete Domenici of New Mexico introduced the "American Energy Production Act of 2008" to expand oil production off the U.S. coasts and in Alaska. It has the potential to increase domestic production enough to keep America running for five years with no foreign imports. With the world price of oil at $116 a barrel, if not now, when?

So does the AEPA have a chance of passing instead of the CREPPA? The chances may be slim but as Wayne Gretzky used to say, "You miss 100% of the shots you don't take."

Posted by JohnGalt at 1:46 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

Shamelessly commenting on my own post-

Disregard for a moment whether either of the proposed Acts would or could actually achieve its stated goal and instead consider the competing intents:

D-PA: "Reasonable" energy price protection for consumers.

R-NM: American energy production.

That pretty well sums it all up, doesn't it?

Posted by: johngalt at May 5, 2008 3:21 PM

May 1, 2008

Dumbest. Plan. Ever.

Senator Obama has a plan to raise oil prices 10% or so.

Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama's proposal for a windfall profits tax on oil companies could cost $15 billion a year at last year's profit levels, a campaign adviser said.

The plan would target profit from the biggest oil companies by taxing each barrel of oil costing more than $80, according to a fact sheet on the proposal. The tax would help pay for a $1,000 tax cut for working families, an expansion of the earned- income tax credit and assistance for people who can't afford their energy bills.

``The profits right now are so remarkable that one could trim them 10 percent or so, which would turn out to be somewhere in the $15 billion range,'' said Jason Grumet, an adviser to the Obama campaign.

I don't say this as an oil company shill, but c'mon. Corporations don't pay taxes, they collect them.

... and it's going to be passed on to you.

Posted by AlexC at 9:12 PM | Comments (2)
But jk thinks:

Reading the headline, I thought "but there's so much competition." However, taxing something more to make it more affordable is hard to top.

Posted by: jk at May 2, 2008 11:26 AM
But TrekMedic251 thinks:

The Dems are cozying up to Chavez. For his oil or his socialism? You decide,...

Posted by: TrekMedic251 at May 3, 2008 9:53 PM

April 30, 2008

You Won't Sleep For Days

Don Luskin links to the most comprehensive collection of unflattering pictures of Senator Clinton ever assembled:

You'll laugh! You'll scream! You'll cry!

Posted by John Kranz at 1:38 PM

April 29, 2008

Obama and Corruption

The Los Angeles Times reports:

After an unsuccessful campaign for Congress in 2000, Illinois state Sen. Barack Obama faced serious financial pressure: numerous debts, limited cash and a law practice he had neglected for a year. Help arrived in early 2001 from a significant new legal client -- a longtime political supporter.

Chicago entrepreneur Robert Blackwell Jr. paid Obama an $8,000-a-month retainer to give legal advice to his growing technology firm, Electronic Knowledge Interchange. It allowed Obama to supplement his $58,000 part-time state Senate salary for more than a year with regular payments from Blackwell's firm that totaled $112,000.

A few months after receiving his final payment from EKI, Obama sent a request on state Senate letterhead urging Illinois officials to provide a $50,000 tourism promotion grant to another Blackwell company, Killerspin.

Killerspin specializes in table tennis, running tournaments nationwide and selling its own line of equipment and apparel and DVD recordings of the competitions. With support from Obama, other state officials and an Obama aide who went to work part time for Blackwell's firms, the company eventually obtained $320,000 in state grants between 2002 and 2004 to subsidize its tournaments.

Read the whole thing. It only gets better from here.

Posted by Harrison Bergeron at 9:51 PM

Obama: Dumb

How stupid does he think 300 million Americans are?

Suddenly there's outrage?

Democrat Barack Obama said Tuesday he was outraged and appalled by the latest comments from his former pastor, who asserted that criticism of his fiery sermons is an attack on the black church and the U.S. government was responsible for the creation of the AIDS virus.

The presidential candidate is seeking to tamp down the growing fury over Rev. Jeremiah Wright and his incendiary remarks that threaten to undermine his campaign.

"I am outraged by the comments that were made and saddened by the spectacle that we saw yesterday," Obama told reporters at a news conference.

After weeks of staying out of the public eye while critics lambasted his sermons, Wright made three public appearances in four days to defend himself. The former pastor of Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago has been combative, providing colorful commentary and feeding the story Obama had hoped was dying down.

Where has Obama been for the past 20 years?

This was the pastor who married the Obamas, baptized their children and took donations from the Obama family.... We're all fairly certain that this is not new territory for the Pastor.

Senator Obama thinks we're too dumb to figure it all out, or he's too dumb to not have noticed it while sitting in the pews.

It's a damned shame the Democrats are looking to be stuck with him for the fall.

Posted by AlexC at 7:13 PM | Comments (5)
But jk thinks:

I think the superdelegates face some hard choices. Of course, they are super-delegates, so they should be up to it. I'm certain the Democrats all appreciate your concern, ac.

Posted by: jk at April 29, 2008 7:40 PM
But HB thinks:

I shall not weep for the Democrats.

I would also like to point out that the media and the liberal politicians and pundits all ridiculed the GOP for criticizing McCain for not being "conservative enough." Newspapers (people still read those, right?) were ripe with stories of how the crazy right-wingers were highjacking the party, etc. Yet, here we are again. The Dems have once again (super delegates aside) chosen to nominate a far-left, liberal.

The Dems were poised to win in 2004 and yet they chose limousine liberal John Kerry. They are (were) poised to win in 2008 and yet they have chosen the son of a socialist, whose social and political connections are deplorable.

I hate to say it, but the last candidate the Dems nominated with any sense was Al Gore and he has since lost his mind (and, thankfully, the beard). When will the Dems learn that it is the moderates within their party that are the winners?

I haven't the slightest idea why Democrats continue to turn into European-style Social Democrats every election cycle. The easiest explanation is that they are arrogant and think that they know better than others (the victory of defeat -- we may have lost, but we nominated the best candidate). While this is tempting, I don't think that it summarizes the average Democratic voter. In fact, most Democrats I know are sensible people. Although I may disagree with some of their arguments, they are by no means represented by the current leadership of their party.

The pleasant pontificator (orgasmic orator? Someone help me out with an ample nickname...) has been given a free pass by those in his party and those in the media. However, in the words of Rev. Wright, the chickens are coming home to roost. It seems as though it is too late for Billary to make a comeback (barring some riot-inspiring swindle) and the Dems are now stuck with a poor candidate again.

Posted by: HB at April 29, 2008 9:33 PM
But jk thinks:

My fear, HB, is that the electorate is veering left to meet them. Call McGovern -> Mondale -> Dukakis -> Kerry -> Obama a straight line. McGovern won one state -- er Commonwealth, the folks in the middle were beaten soundly. But Senator Kerry almost won.

Has the electorate shifted far enough left to elect Obama? I fear so.

Posted by: jk at April 30, 2008 12:03 PM
But jk thinks:

My fear, HB, is that the electorate is veering left to meet them. Call McGovern -> Mondale -> Dukakis -> Kerry -> Obama a straight line. McGovern won one state -- er Commonwealth, the folks in the middle were beaten soundly. But Senator Kerry almost won.

Has the electorate shifted far enough left to elect Obama? I fear so.

Posted by: jk at April 30, 2008 12:03 PM
But johngalt thinks:

But more to AC's original point, I'm convinced the Wright revival cum Obama outrage routine was carefully orchestrated as an attempt to defuse the Wright issue before the general election.

They did the best they could in the situation but I agree with HB. When votin' day finally rolls around, 'Merica ain't gonna 'lect no 'Merica hater.

Posted by: johngalt at May 2, 2008 3:58 PM

One For Obama?

I have to watch it, I am going to get a reputation around here.

But Professor Mankiw is -- sadly -- right. Of the three current Presidential candidates, Obama is the only one smart enough to oppose the summer gas tax holiday.

I don't know any prominent economist who favors this McCain-Clinton proposal. More common is the reaction of a friend of mine (a veteran of the Clinton administration) who calls the idea "ludicrous."

Posted by John Kranz at 4:09 PM

Any Room Under the Obama Bus?

Is there any more room under the Obama Bus? Scoot over, Professor Goolsbee, scoot over Grandma, Rev. Wright will need some space by the driveshaft. WaPo:

"Whatever relationship I had with Reverend Wright has changed as a consequence of this," Obama said.

His treatment of people is between he and his clergyman -- oh wait, that's not gong to work.

But I think that one part of this has not been scrutinized. Senator Obama is proud of his consistent opposition to Iraq. He lifted himself up with its prescience when things looked bad and he is still enjoying the ride among antiwar voters. But was this principled opposition to war? How much was tempered by the anti-American sermons he heard for 20 years?

Was Iraq not worth the blood and treasure or were American values not worth spreading?

UPDATE: Instapundit has a superb roundup. Best news: the clarifications were good enough for Andrew Sullivan.

And today, we found that he can fight back, and take a stand, without calculation and in what is clearly a great amount of personal difficulty and political pain. It's what anyone should want in a president. It makes me want to see him succeed more than ever. It's why this country needs to see him succeed more than ever.

I feel better already.

Posted by John Kranz at 3:43 PM

April 27, 2008

Political Virtuoso

It's over. Turn out the lights. Shut down the McCain web sites, send the Clintons home. Senator Barack Obama will be the next President of the United States.

I just watched his interview on FOX News Sunday and I do not think I have ever seen a better political performance.

Chris Wallace was never hostile or pushy, but every question was difficult. He didn't even throw up a couple of softballs in the beginning. He kept his promise to ask some questions that have not been asked. But Senator Obama parried every question flawlessly. He was engaging and likeable and reasonable. He made Bill Clinton look like Nixon.

He opened the interview with some likable persiflage about the "Obama Watch Clock," suggesting there had been a leap year and perhaps it was only 771 days since he said he would come on the show.

Wallace then asked about exit polls and demographics. Obama assured him that Democrats would pull together in November, and that he doesn't apologize for any electoral successes of the "popular Clinton brand."

About race, he said that while we're not beyond racism in society, we are ready to elect an African American President: "If I lose, it won’t be because of race. It will be because, you know, I made mistakes on the campaign trail, I wasn’t communicating effectively my plans in terms of helping them in their everyday lives."

On Reverend Wright he found a perfect line and held it throughout. He never threw Wright under the bus, but he effectively aligned himself with him as a pastor, all the while taking a strong stance against his politics. He summed up with generational differences, and said "The problem — and I pointed this out in my speech in Philadelphia — was where oftentimes he would err, I think, is in only cataloguing the bad of America and not doing enough to lift up the good. And that’s probably where he and I have the biggest difference..."

Then Obama brings up the flag pin kerfuffle -- on FOX News -- and hits it out of the park:

I don’t think - let me just use another example. On flag pins, I have worn flag pins in the past. I will wear flag pins in the future. The fact that I said that some politicians use the flag pin and then aren’t acting in a particularly patriotic way, for that to someone be translated into me being anti-patriotic or anti-flag, I think that is a distraction.

I think that that is not reflective of me or the love that I have for this country. Keep in mind, I think (INAUDIBLE) the scene nationally at the Democratic convention, giving what I would say was about as patriotic a speech about what America means to me and what this country’s about as any speech that we’ve heard in a long time.

He took every question and accepted every question as fair. He may not have answered every question, but I have not seen a Sunday show where a pol did for a long time. The panel was a lot less impressed than I was. Brit Hume thought he had dodged the issue of Clinton's vote lead on White 29-50 year olds with blue Toyotas who like hot dogs, but I don't see the electorate drawn to inside baseball. Bill Kristol pointed out that it wasn't wonkish, that "36 minutes of Senator Clinton" would have yielded specific proposals and legislation, but I think the interview was more ethereal. Wallace pressed for a little specifics on taxes, but Obama matched Wallace for style.

Wallace asked him how he calls himself post-partisan when he votes with the Democrats. Obama suggested that Republicans sometimes do have better ideas. When pressed on what, he suggested that top-down regulation has been more onerous and less effective than systems that involve business and market forces, such as cap-and-trade on pollution. Brilliant! The Democrats hear "we can continue regulating if we do it right" and the Republicans here "this guy knows the harsh effects of over-regulation."

How does he support General Plateaus but not his Surge? He would direct Petraeus to come up with a plan that would demand Iraqi responsibility but did not blindly support the Iraqi government. This guy is good.

My only negative -- besides the fact that he's wrong about absolutely everything -- is that he is no smoother at extemporaneous speech than our current President. Harsh words for a Democrat, I know, but he stammers and pauses and says the wrong word then corrects it, all the stuff that has filled the "Bushism" books. Yet people remember his soaring, scripted rhetoric and forget his flubs. (I swear he mangled two words once and said "Shit" but that did not make the transcript, he quickly corrected to the phrase he meant.)

UPDATE: Ed Morrissey disagrees.

Posted by John Kranz at 4:19 PM | Comments (2)
But AlexC thinks:

If we've lost JK, we've lost America!

Posted by: AlexC at April 27, 2008 6:02 PM
But AlexC thinks:

See also Dean Barnett

Posted by: AlexC at April 27, 2008 6:18 PM

April 24, 2008

Headline of the Week

Who else but Extreme Mortman:

Clinton Dominates Beaver and Hooker While Obama Prevails in Intercourse and Blue Ball

Posted by John Kranz at 5:00 PM | Comments (2)
But AlexC thinks:

He must be a crack up in person.

Posted by: AlexC at April 24, 2008 5:43 PM
But TrekMedic251 thinks:

Obviously, neither was a hit in Virginville! :)

Posted by: TrekMedic251 at April 25, 2008 9:57 PM

April 23, 2008

Some Endorsement

Terri at I Think ^(Link) Therefore I Err notes a possible inconsistency at the NYTimes Ed Page:

After winning an important swing state by 10 points,….
After having been out spent in the swing state and still winning by 10 points,….
After having earned the primary in the key purple states,….
After having endorsed Hillary Clinton,….

The NYTimes calls for Hillary to step out of the race.

As Taranto would say, hope you don't ever end up in a foxhole with them.

Posted by John Kranz at 12:02 PM

April 18, 2008

jk Defends Senator Obama

The LA Times Blog watches this video and sees Senator Obama flipping the bird at his Democratic opponent:

Get a life, people. I will happily list 100 reasons to not vote for Obama, but this won't make the list. Actually I find him here at his most endearing. Were Karl Rove advising him, I would suspect him of ginning up controversy so this video got wider coverage.

Posted by John Kranz at 3:13 PM | Comments (1)
But AlexC thinks:

JK, but there was that pause, and the grin, and the "vibe" that went through the audience.

I was like "no way" at first, but now put me in the definately "maybe column."

Posted by: AlexC at April 18, 2008 8:43 PM

April 17, 2008

Not Really a Supply-Sider

When ABC moderator Charlie Gibson -- mirabile freakin' dictu -- confronts Senator Obama with the news that lowering the capital gains rate increased revenues in the Clinton and Bush administrations, Senator Obama says "Well, Charlie, what I've said is that I would look at raising the capital gains tax for purposes of fairness."

This comes via Don Luskin, who adds:

In other words, even if it costs the US Treasury money in lost revenues, Obama would raise the capgains tax to punish people who make too much money, or make it the wrong way. Obama claimed in the same debate, "how we're going to be able to deliver on middle-class tax relief is to change how business is done in Washington." How does reducing revenue in the name of Obama's personal notion of "fairness" achieve middle-class tax relief? And how is using the tax-code to reward and punish particular constituencies changing how business is done in Washington?

UPDATE: The WSJ Ed Page piles on:

Time and again, the rookie Senator has said he would not raise taxes on middle-class earners, whom he describes as people with annual income lower than between $200,000 and $250,000. On Wednesday night, he repeated the vow. "I not only have pledged not to raise their taxes," said the Senator, "I've been the first candidate in this race to specifically say I would cut their taxes."

But Mr. Obama has also said he's open to raising – indeed, nearly doubling to 28% – the current top capital gains tax rate of 15%, which would in fact be a tax hike on some 100 million Americans who own stock, including millions of people who fit Mr. Obama's definition of middle class.

Mr. Gibson dared to point out this inconsistency, which regularly goes unmentioned in Mr. Obama's fawning press coverage. But Mr. Gibson also probed a little deeper, asking the candidate why he wants to increase the capital gains tax when history shows that a higher rate brings in less revenue.

The whole piece is great.

Posted by John Kranz at 6:01 PM

April 16, 2008

The Hamas Endorsement

I didn't know they stacked awesome this high.

While Sen. Barack Obama sought to improve his relationship with the Jewish community today by meeting with leaders Philadelphia, comments by a Hamas political adviser this weekend could potentially hurt the Democratic presidential candidate.

During an interview on WABC radio Sunday, top Hamas political adviser Ahmed Yousef said the terrorist group supports Obama’s foreign policy vision.

“We don’t mind–actually we like Mr. Obama. We hope he will (win) the election and I do believe he is like John Kennedy, great man with great principle, and he has a vision to change America to make it in a position to lead the world community but not with domination and arrogance,”

Posted by AlexC at 9:31 PM

Headline of the Week

Clinton, Obama won't vow to put loser on ticket as VP

UPDATE: I sent this to Taranto who uses it today, with the subhead "No Wonder Losers Are So Bitter"

Posted by John Kranz at 8:41 PM

April 14, 2008

Obama Discovers Source of Pa's Bitterness

100 Calorie Tastykakes.

What's the point?

It's not a Tastykake if it's not 2,450 calories and 27 grams of fat.

Might just be me, but I bet he can't imagine the proletariat eating those things.

Posted by AlexC at 3:47 PM | Comments (2)
But jk thinks:

Mmm Tastykakes -- I'm holding out for an Avs-Flyers Cup final so I can get another box.

Posted by: jk at April 14, 2008 6:30 PM
But TrekMedic251 thinks:

Bring back the days of the waxed paper wrappers. These plastic wrappers are for the birds. The icing sticks to everything but the &*@&@^@%@ cake.

BTW - Help stop pediatric cancer, buy the Alex's Lemonade Stand Lemon TastyKakes!

Posted by: TrekMedic251 at April 15, 2008 10:27 PM

Hell Yes I'm Bitter

Three years ago, I was a Vice President! Now I'm slogging along as a Senior Software Developer. The good jobs are gone and they're never coming back. Thank goodness my dear, departed Mother is not around to see the slide.

I just renewed my NRA membership and I am thinking about Methodism...

Posted by John Kranz at 11:20 AM

April 13, 2008

MSM on l'Affaire Obama

The WaPo gets to it in paragraph six of a bylined story:

After losing the Ohio primary to Clinton (N.Y.) last month, in part because of the difficulty he had connecting with Rust Belt voters worried about their jobs, Obama (Ill.) has been talking in greater detail about what he would do to repair the economy and contrasting that with McCain's proposals. But this has sometimes come at the expense of Obama's more abstract and inspiring message about rising above partisan pettiness to unite the country, the central call of his campaign.

At the same time, McCain and Clinton have begun a combined assault on Obama's working-class outreach, pouncing on his remarks at a recent San Francisco fundraiser -- about how many small-town Americans have grown "bitter" about their economic situation -- as evidence of elitism and lack of empathy for average Americans.

Mean old Clinton and McCain.

Posted by John Kranz at 1:01 PM

Those Wacky Pennsylvanias, II

Cuffy Meigs at Perfunction suggests this video now represents a "convenient list" of all the towns Senator Obama is gong to lose:

Credit where due: that's a very well done video. Clearly if he's the nominee, he will enjoy a surfeit of great YouTube videos better than the GOP high-budget professional commercials.

Posted by John Kranz at 12:01 PM | Comments (2)
But AlexC thinks:

Heh. Some clever Obama partisans.

Change! Catch the fever!

For a less political version (and perhaps the original), see here...

Also includes the lyrics...

Posted by: AlexC at April 13, 2008 1:45 PM
But jk thinks:

I just don't think you can pull this off in a State that doesn't have a Shickshinny...

Posted by: jk at April 14, 2008 8:18 PM

April 12, 2008

Those Wacky Pennsylvanians

We are privileged to call several Keystone State residents "brother" on this blog. I never realized how backwards y'all were until Senator Obama filled me in (c/o Jules Crittenden):

You go into these small towns in Pennsylvania and, like a lot of small towns in the Midwest, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years and nothing’s replaced them…And they fell through the Clinton Administration, and the Bush Administration, and each successive administration has said that somehow these communities are gonna regenerate and they have not.

And it’s not surprising then they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.

Thankfully, you have Senator Clinton:

I know you're feeling better after that.

The Blogosphere is on DefCon 5 over this (causing even me to mix jargon) but I think the man who talked himself out of the Rev. Wright imbroglio can beat this rap. But it will weigh down the campaign. Mark Steyn compares his arrogance -- unfavorably -- to Senator Kerry's:

I had a ton of fun covering Kerry's awkwardness with Americans but, in fairness, it was essentially a consumerist snobbery: he preferred the Newburgh Yacht Club for lunch over the local Wendy's, he'd rather be windsurfing off Nantucket than rednecking at Nascar, etc. Obama's snobbery seems more culturally profound, and unlike Kerry he can't plead the crippling disadvantage of a privileged childhood. Rather, Barack's condescension reveals a man out of touch with the rhythms of American life to a degree that's hard to fathom.

All the while, Hugh Hewitt wonders why Keystone Staters are so bitter? I didn't even know y'all were until today.

John Lewandowski at PA Water Cooler has a suggested "Snoboma" campaign poster.

UPDATE: I never said DefCon 5 wasn't fun! Terrestrial Musings interviews a man from West Deer Township:

"And it wasn't just the beer. Some of them actually went out in the woods in the fall, and shot animals. And kilt 'em. With real guns!

"I was shocked, of course. For all their diversity, none of my gay friends would have ever thought of doing anything like that. But with my job loss, and lack of money for pedicures and pommade, they didn't want to hang with me any more. So I borried a twelve gauge over'n'under, and went out with my new beer-drinking animal-killing friends in the woods. And I'll tell you what, when I shot down that eight-pointer, I felt a sense of power over the helpless in a way that I hadn't since I'd been looking down on the rednecks when I had that good job in Pittsburgh, driving around town in my 528i.

Posted by John Kranz at 1:18 PM | Comments (4)
But AlexC thinks:

i'm just glad the Pa Legislature didn't move the primary to Feb 5th... think of all the dick-stepping sound bites the past few weeks have generated!

Posted by: AlexC at April 12, 2008 7:19 PM
But Charlie on the PA Tpk thinks:

I think I heard James Carville and Hardball describe the commonwealth as a big-T: Philadelphia and Pittsburgh on the sides, and in the middle and branching out at the top there's more deer than people, and more guns than deer.

Gee, how did he know what I keep in my closet??

Posted by: Charlie on the PA Tpk at April 12, 2008 10:34 PM
But jk thinks:

I just wish you guys weren't so bitter...

Posted by: jk at April 13, 2008 11:41 AM
But AlexC thinks:

Those pittsburgher's have no excuse. They've had the Steelers and the Penguins and the Pirates.

We haven't had a championship team since 1980!!!


Posted by: AlexC at April 13, 2008 1:48 PM

April 10, 2008

Quote of the Day

"I never cease to be amazed by the misogynistic attitudes of some people in this country," said John, wearing a spangled black evening coat over a vermilion silk shirt. "I say to hell with them. ... I love you, Hillary, I'll always be there for you." --
Hat-tip: Taranto
Posted by John Kranz at 4:04 PM

April 9, 2008

Sont Les Mots Qui Vont Tres Bien Enseble

And a very Tres Bien Ensemble do Senator Obama and his lovely wife Michelle make. She balances his extreme left wing beliefs with further-extreme-left beliefs.

Michelle Obama Visits Harrisburg, reads the headline in the Charlotte Observer. Mother, wife and lawyer. Reads to kids, yadda yadda, calls hug time and potty breaks...I'm falling asleep here...I would have bailed, except Professor Reynolds told me what was at the bottom of the story:

Should she become first lady, she said she'd focus on family issues.

"If we don't wake up as a nation with a new kind of leadership...for how we want this country to work, then we won't get universal health care," she said.

"The truth is, in order to get things like universal health care and a revamped education system, then someone is going to have to give up a piece of their pie so that someone else can have more."

I guess Austen Goolsbee has been completely thrown under the bus for having the temerity to support some foreign trade. Will the last serious economist leaving the Democratic Party please turn out the lights? If you believe in this zero-sum nonsense, all the other Democratic proposals make sense.

But don't let your offense at pie cutting make you miss the paragraphs above it:

After law school, she and Barack were beset by loans they'd still be paying had her husband not written two best-sellers, "The Audacity of Hope" and "Dreams From My Father."

Those debts early in their marriage, she said, equips her husband to better understand the problems many Americans face.

Can I get a boo-freakin'-hoo? The Princeton Lawyer and the Harvard lawyer are so oppressed by their school debts that they really learn how to relate to the average American -- you know the average Joe who doesn't have a gangster buddy to buy him a $2 Million mansion.

She'll have your pie, and yours, and yours -- and yours, thank you very much.

UPDATE: Tom Maguire is not much of a Michelle fan. He sees my pie and whining, and raises me a "move-that-asian-girl-to-the-back-row-to-include-more-white-people-in-the-photo." Awesome.

Posted by John Kranz at 1:22 PM

April 7, 2008


Russell Roberts at Cafe Hayek wishes that Jay Leno would correct his guest on economics:

I wish Jay Leno had pointed out that the cut in hours was the result of passing the minimum wage--that it was as inevitable as gravity. I wish he'd said that the story showed how the minimum wage is a false promise of prosperity. I wish he'd pointed out that fighting isn't enough, caring isn't enough, that prosperity can't be legislated any more than self-interest can be made illegal. I wish Jay Leno had said that when you find yourself in a hole, the first thing to do is to stop digging.

I'm not holding my breath, but I would still recommend this clip. Senator Clinton does pretty well. I'm not sure she joked her way out of Tuszlagate, but she comes across as very likable and intelligent. I howl at her economic failings and her ability to blame President Bush every time someone's dry cleaning is late. But if I were her Chief Strategist I would call this one a win.

But I am not her chief strategist (though I hear there's an opening), so I will point out my least favorite line: "We borrow money from the Chinese to buy oil from the Saudis, which is not exactly a smart strategy."

Hat-tip: Greg Mankiw

Posted by John Kranz at 4:01 PM

Mark Penn in '08!

The NYTimes reports that Clinton strategist (I want a strategist) Mark Penn has been forced to take a reduced role because his business interests conflict with the Senator's positions:

Mr. Penn met with the Colombians in his role as chief executive of Burson-Marsteller, a global public relations firm. He has refused to sever his ties to the company, which also represented Countrywide Financial, the nation’s largest mortgage lender, and through a subsidiary represented Blackwater Worldwide, the military contractor blamed for numerous civilian deaths in Iraq.

Sadly, all of Penn's positions seem to be the correct ones -- perhaps Senator Clinton should take a greatly diminished role.

UPDATE: Larry Kudlow points out that Dems + Free Trade = Death Penalty

My pal Jerry Bowyer e-mailed me this morning with the following thought on Clinton bigwig Mark Penn: Free trade among Democrats is so completely dead in the water that any Democratic advisor favoring free trade is subject to the death penalty.

Just take a look at this morning’s New York Sun. Teamster president Jimmy Hoffa is still unhappy with Penn’s demotion, because the Clinton camp still has Penn on the payroll. In other words, Hoffa’s position — which is big labor’s position — is to take the free-trade Mark Penn back behind the barn and shoot him.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:20 AM

April 4, 2008

7:00 PM Friday, time for Clinton news!

Remember the 90s? The Clintons would put out press releases on Friday night of embarrassing material. Then on Monday, they'd say "that's old news."

Senator Clinton released tax returns at 7PM EDT Friday the Fourth -- and this partisan hack thought "what's she hiding?"

Well, they're rich. That might be a political liability in some Democratic circles, but she and President Clinton have done well since moving out of 1600 Pennsylvania

Hillary Clinton had $10.5 million in book income over the period from her book "Living History." She donated earnings from her other book, "It Takes a Village," to charity.

Clinton's tax returns show that of the remaining presidential candidates, she is the one most able to access large amounts of personal money. She lent her campaign $5 million in late February and could contribute more if she finds herself falling far behind Obama's proficient fundraising.

McCain's wife is heiress to her father's stake in Hensley & Co. of Phoenix, one of the largest beer distributorships in the country and her worth could exceed $100 million. But the couple has a prenuptial agreement that has kept most assets in her name. In his financial disclosures, McCain lists his major sources of income as his Senate salary of $169,300 and a Navy pension of about $56,000.

I don't know that I'd have guessed her as the richest of the three. Other than President Clinton's success, "Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton and former President Clinton reported $20.4 million in income for 2007 and more than $109 million since 2000" I didn't see a good reason to resuscitate the Friday night press releases. Of course, some intrepid blogger will find the dirt over the weekend and post it on Monday. But then it will be old news.

As a partisan hack, I question whether some of the huge speaking fees or book advances come awfully close to what we call "a bribe." Ten-point-five-mil for "Living History?" How many copies sold? No doubt President Clinton is beloved and a valued speaker, but it is a pretty convenient way to funnel money to a US Senator. I have no proof, it's just a little unsettling.

Posted by John Kranz at 7:48 PM

April 1, 2008


Emperor of Hope Barrack Obama recently stated that he didn't want his children to be punished with a child at 16. Personally, I liked this response:

My apologies Mr. Obama but a child, whether born or unborn, is not a punishment. You may view it as a consequence of engaging in sexual activity, but in no way should a child ever be referred to as a punishment. Perhaps those values and morals that you teach your daughters should be that Pro-Choice can mean something more than the free ability to dispose of a life; it can also be the choice not to engage in an activity that has specific and predictable biological consequences.

I don't want to get into a discussion regarding abortion, but I think that this statement will get a lot of air time when the general election rolls around. McCain will need to rally the base and this will surely motivate social conservatives.

Posted by Harrison Bergeron at 11:48 PM | Comments (1)
But jk thinks:

HB is looking to rally the Social Conservatives -- and I thought I was the pragmatist. You go, Brother!

I think this plays into the Malthusian worldview of the left. Every child is a mouth to feed, not the one who will cure cancer.

Posted by: jk at April 2, 2008 12:21 PM

March 28, 2008

Seven Figure Income, No Retirement Accounts

Many have made a big a deal about Senator & Mrs. Obama's relatively low level of charitable giving as indicated on their tax returns. That's between he and his Jew-hating clergyman as far as I am concerned (low swipe even for me, sorry!)

What concerns me more as a Prosperitarian is that the couple does not invest:

Indeed, even though Michelle Obama had income from the University of Chicago's Hospital System that exceeded $1 million during the period the tax returns were filed, she appears to have neither a 401(k) plan nor an IRA for retirement contributions. In another sign the Obama household wasn't into building a nest egg, the couple cashed out $6,260 from a pension or 401(k) plan in 2000.

Larry Kudlow hit this topic on his show last night. An excellent segment is posted on the CNBC site (I can link but not embed). I encourage you to watch. Especially Jerry Bowyer's remarks at the beginning of the clip. It really does speak to their beliefs that they choose -- not only to pass on tax deferral -- but to not invest in Corporate America at all.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:53 AM

March 27, 2008

Democrats and Religion

It seems to me that the Democrat Party finds religion only in even numbered years.

The Catholics:

This year, Clinton has fared well among Catholic voters in early primary states and she holds a substantial lead over Obama among Catholic Democrats in Pennsylvania polls. Some analysts argue, however, that Catholic voters' race, age and economic status - rather than religion - are more likely to play a greater role in determining their vote.

Pennsylvania has an estimated 3.8 million Catholics, or just over 30 percent of the state's population, and the percentage among Democrats is estimated to be slightly higher.

Scranton is the hometown of the late Gov. Robert P. Casey, a feisty Catholic politician who stood up to the Democratic Party over abortion. Pennsylvania's version of the so-called "Reagan Democrat" willing to buck the party on such issues are called "Casey Democrats," and they are a critical voting bloc in Pennsylvania.

"Those so-called Casey Democrats will be looking for a broad agenda on social justice, economic justice and a recognition by the candidate, by our nominee that he or she will be someone who can talk about their faith, but more important than that, can listen to them, listen to what their concerns are and also listen to them about their faith and their point of view," said Bob Casey Jr., Pennsylvania's junior senator and the son of the former governor.

Bravely Bob Casey Jr is bucking the endorsement trend and standing athwart history with his finger in the wind.

The Jews:

Like the general population of super-delegates, whose support remains fluid, several Jewish supporters of the New York senator said in interviews that their votes still remain up for grabs. All told, more than 70 Jewish super-delegates will make the trip to Denver this summer for the Democrats’ nominating convention. They account for nearly one-10th of the party’s nearly 800 so-called super-delegates, the informal term for elected and party officials whose status as delegates to the convention does not depend on state primaries and caucuses.

If the Democratic presidential primary comes down to a photo finish, these Jewish insiders could play an outsized role in anointing a nominee at the party’s August convention. And it would be a history-making experience: Although Jews have long been considered a formidable voting bloc and have been overrepresented among the country’s cadre of liberal activists and thinkers, they have only more recently become common as Democratic establishment insiders, with unprecedented numbers of both Jewish elected officials and party leaders.

“Politics in America has become a Jewish profession, just like arts and the law,” said Ira Forman, executive director of the National Jewish Democratic Council and the author of a book about Jews and American politics. “We now are overrepresented in all these areas.”

... to the chagrin of Democrat politicians like Reverend Jeremiah Wright.

Fans of the Immaculate Reception:

Steelers legend Franco Harris opened Sen. Barack Obama's campaign headquarters in Washington County.

Obama's opponent, Sen. Hillary Clinton, made her rounds in Western Pennsylvania this week, stopping in Greensburg.

She's come under fire for comments about landing under sniper fire in Bosnia in 1996, but CBS News video from that day showed no gunfire.

Harris says he won't trash the senator.

"Things like that are really not important to me. You know, those are issues that sidetrack from the real issues," he said.

... like which way that "fumble" bounced.

Posted by AlexC at 12:35 AM | Comments (1)
But TrekMedic251 thinks:

To famously paraphrase a 1970's matron: I don't know which Catholics are siding with Hillary. All the Catholics I know are siding with McCain.

Hell, even most of the Jews I know are siding with McCain to stay above this Obama/Clinton fray.

Posted by: TrekMedic251 at March 30, 2008 10:03 AM

March 26, 2008

What's He Know That I Don't?

Professor Mankiw points out that Senator Obama chooses not to defer significant amounts of income from taxation. Why?

I don't know. Maybe he is getting bad tax advice. Or maybe he is expecting vastly higher tax rates in the future when the accumulated savings will need to be withdrawn and taxed. As Obama economic adviser Austan Goolsbee has written, "Future increases in tax rates potentially threaten to significantly reduce the value of your retirement savings and may even mean that you should not save in 401(k) accounts at all."

Look on the bright side, Senator -- maybe you'll lose and your taxes won't go up so much.

Posted by John Kranz at 6:10 PM

March 25, 2008

This Speaks for Itself

Posted by Harrison Bergeron at 1:31 PM | Comments (1)
But jk thinks:

Did I say there was sniper fire? I meant that we ran out of after-dinner mints. Tragic.

Posted by: jk at March 25, 2008 5:20 PM

March 23, 2008

jk Defends President Clinton

Happy Easter, ThreeSourcers. We have a theological big tent here, but I think it is safe to say that we all believe in redemption, rebirth and renewal.

In that spirit, I am going to leap to the defense of President William Jefferson Clinton. Instapundit reports that the campaign is "clarifying remarks" after an Obama aide is shouting McCarthyism.

"I think it would be a great thing if we had an election year where you had two people who loved this country and were devoted to the interest of this country," said Clinton, who was speaking to a group of veterans Friday in Charlotte, N.C. "And people could actually ask themselves who is right on these issues, instead of all this other stuff that always seems to intrude itself on our politics."

McPeak, a former chief of staff of the Air Force and currently a co-chair of Obama's presidential campaign, said that sounded like McCarthy.

"I grew up, I was going to college when Joe McCarthy was accusing good Americans of being traitors, so I've had enough of it," McPeak said.

Methinks the aide doth protest too much.

Also an Easter shoutout to Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who is making the right kind of enemies:


CHENGDU, China - China attacked House Speaker Nancy Pelosi Sunday for her recent meeting with the Dalai Lama, accusing her and other "human rights police" of double standards and ignoring the truth about the unrest in Tibet.

One could accuse me of using these stories as a cudgel against the Obama campaign and Chinese authority. That's a hell of a thing to accuse a guy of on Easter...

UPDATE ON ITEM 1: If you're not having fun... This same advisor said "I mean there's no reason why this shouldn't be a walkover" and -- even better -- "We'll be there a century, hopefully. If it works right." Both of these from a 2003 speech dug up by Tom McGuire who explains "Obama was not in the briefing that Sunday when McPeak made his controversial remarks."

Posted by John Kranz at 12:21 PM

March 21, 2008

If you’re not having fun, you’re not paying attention!

The Junior Senator from NY was awarded “Four Pinocchios” out of a possible four for her depiction of landing in Bosnia “under heavy sniper fire” and running “heads-down” to the base.

The WaPo Fact Checker, gives its highest prevarication rating. Click through to see Clinton kissing an eight year old Muslim girl who read a poem in English at the welcoming ceremony (no doubt the bullets whizzing around their heads are moving too fast to be captured on film).

Hat-tip: Instapundit

Posted by John Kranz at 1:57 PM

Typical White Persons, Unite!

I was thinking "Typical White Person" would make a great blog name, but Instapundit links to some cool T-Shirts.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:44 AM | Comments (1)
But HB thinks:

That blog already exists under a different name.

Posted by: HB at March 21, 2008 12:57 PM

March 19, 2008

Hillary Loved NAFTA

ABC News reports that Hillary was for NAFTA before she was against it:

One interesting event in Sen. Hillary Clinton's just-released schedules from the 1990s comes on Nov. 10 1993, when the former first lady was to serve as the closing act during a briefing on NAFTA, the trade agreement she now assails.


Two attendees of that closed-door briefing, neither of whom are affiliated with any campaign, describe that event for ABC News. It was a room full of women involved in international trade. David Gergen served as a sort of master of ceremonies as various women members of the Cabinet talked up NAFTA, which had yet to pass Congress.

"It wasn’t a drop-by it was organized around her participation," said one attendee. "Her remarks were totally pro-NAFTA and what a good thing it would be for the economy. There was no equivocation for her support for NAFTA at the time. Folks were pleased that she came by. If this is a still a question about what Hillary's position when she was First Lady, she was totally supportive if NAFTA.

That first attendee recalls that the First Lady's office in the East Wing put together "the invitation list, who was invited authorizations and all that stuff."

And what is this attendee's response to Clinton today distancing herself from NAFTA? "For people who worked hard to pass NAFTA and who support the importance of markets opening for the economy in the long term, they're very upset. A number of the women who were there are very upset. You need to have some integrity in your position. The Clintons when Bill Clinton was president took a moderate position on trade for Democrats. For her to repudiate that now seems pretty phony."

Posted by Harrison Bergeron at 10:23 PM

Maybe I Was Wrong

This one time. I don't plan to make it a habit. But my belief that Senator Obama could ride out l'Affaire Wright is suspect.


Buried in his eloquent, highly praised speech on America's racial divide, Sen. Barack Obama contradicted more than a year of denials and spin from him and his staff about his knowledge of Rev. Jeremiah Wright's controversial sermons.

That’s the lead. And the second paragraph has a word that starts with T and rhymes with Pez Co, (Mmm, Pez®...)

Not a good sign (Hat-tip: Instapundit)

Posted by John Kranz at 3:58 PM | Comments (1)
But Christian Prophet thinks:

The purpose of Barack Obama's speech on race was to distract attention. He would be in serious trouble if a spotlight was shined on the non-racial aspects of his THEOLOGY. See:

Posted by: Christian Prophet at March 19, 2008 4:40 PM

March 18, 2008

The Clintons Succeed

It took longer than the Clintons likely expected, and took a little help from the "vast right-wing conspiracy", but they have succeeded in making the campaign about race.

I still think that it is too late for Hillary to win the nomination, but this certainly will not help Obama in the general election. Perhaps Hillary is eyeing 2012.

Posted by Harrison Bergeron at 1:20 PM | Comments (1)
But jk thinks:

I think Senator Obama will be able to talk himself out of this. Certainly enough for Democratic supporters. Then, quite likely, in the General it will be "old news."

I base this less on the speech than on the trepidation that mainstream media have shown on Rev. Wright. They have to report it, but they won't go for the throat. The NYTimes did not report the "God Damn America" line until Bill Kristol used it in his column.

FOXNews has covered it, as have blogs, but I think Obama has a get out of jail free card on this unless the Leno-Letterman-SNL axis chooses to pounce.

Posted by: jk at March 18, 2008 2:23 PM

March 13, 2008

The Limbaugh Effect, Part Deux

Two items segued by the Rush Limbaugh - Glenn Reynolds nexus:

My brother-in-law is painting inside my house and listens to Rush. So I heard him yesterday. I'm not a huge fan, but he said something I really enjoyed. Talking about the arcane delegate, superdelegate rules in the Democratic nomination process he said "These people can't even pick their own candidate -- and they want to run your health care!"

Instapundit echoes that riff today, suggesting that "IS THIS SCREWY OR WHAT? Obama gets no net gain after Mississippi win. If I were John McCain, I'd be asking why the party that put together these primary rules thinks it can run a health-care plan. Or the country . . . ."

Brother Glenn also links to Bull Dog Pundit, switching his PA registration to 'D' so that he can vote for Senator Clinton.

BDP gives six good reasons, and his first commenter decries that this is associated with Limbaugh.

I'm still rooting for Clinton, mind you, because I would truly rather have her at 1600 Pennsylvania than President Obama. Yet I think these tactical plays are stupid, undemocratic, and wrong.

  • Stupid because I find it unlikely that there are enough übertacticians in a big state like PA to be anything more than noise;
  • Undemocratic because I believe that parties have the right to nominate the candidate of their choice. I don't want Democrats to stick me with David Duke or Governor Huckabee next time they have a presumptive.
  • Wrong because there are too many variables. Kids, I'd trust computer climate models more than some of these "too clever by half" strategies. Ol' Bull Dog himself points out the ways that Senator Clinton can call herself the stronger candidate if she wins PA. Sadly, they are true. Obama has received the limousine liberal vote in some Red states that will not be in play.

Yes, I enjoy watching them spend their war chests and disillusion their youth with a protracted primary battle, I am just not sold on the capability or the wisdom of keeping it going.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:58 AM

March 11, 2008

I Fear For the Republic

And I fear for Senator McCain. It seems that anything short of fainting dead at the awesomeness that is the Junior Senator from Illinois is proof of racism.

Orlando Patterson, "a professor of sociology at Harvard and the author of 'The Ordeal of Integration: Progress and Resentment in America’s 'Racial’ Crisis.''” pens a NYTimes OpEd to declare Senator Clinton's 3AM ad racist. It's not what it says, mind you, but a smart professor like Patterson, who has the proper experience in finding sub rosa racism, can see it plain as a big red pimple on your fat, white ass:

I have spent my life studying the pictures and symbols of racism and slavery, and when I saw the Clinton ad’s central image — innocent sleeping children and a mother in the middle of the night at risk of mortal danger — it brought to my mind scenes from the past. I couldn’t help but think of D. W. Griffith’s “Birth of a Nation,” the racist movie epic that helped revive the Ku Klux Klan, with its portrayal of black men lurking in the bushes around white society. The danger implicit in the phone ad — as I see it — is that the person answering the phone might be a black man, someone who could not be trusted to protect us from this threat.

The ad could easily have removed its racist sub-message by including images of a black child, mother or father — or by stating that the danger was external terrorism. Instead, the child on whom the camera first focuses is blond. Two other sleeping children, presumably in another bed, are not blond, but they are dimly lighted, leaving them ambiguous. Still it is obvious that they are not black — both, in fact, seem vaguely Latino.

Finally, Hillary Clinton appears, wearing a business suit at 3 a.m., answering the phone. The message: our loved ones are in grave danger and only Mrs. Clinton can save them. An Obama presidency would be dangerous — and not just because of his lack of experience. In my reading, the ad, in the insidious language of symbolism, says that Mr. Obama is himself the danger, the outsider within.

If they will go after Senator Clinton, imagine the disparagements we'll see when Senator McCain starts advertising.

Hat-tip: Insty who links to more backlash.

Posted by John Kranz at 4:41 PM

March 7, 2008

Seven Weeks to Talk About Marc Rich

It's not only Senator Obama that might face a little scrutiny from a bored press corps awaiting Pennsylvania’s primary on April 22. We can, perhaps, check up on the Clinton pardons scandal. Y'know, if the Clintons were to demand that the archive be released...

John Fund, Political Diary:

Obama campaign manager David Plouffe isn't mincing words about what he thinks of Hillary Clinton's attacks on his candidate's ethics. "Sen. Clinton is the most secretive politician in America today. This has been a pattern throughout her career of the lack of disclosure," he told reporters this week.

Some backup for Mr. Plouffe's statement arrived yesterday when it was revealed that archivists at the Clinton Presidential Library are declining to release material on just how President Clinton issued dozens of suspect pardons in the final hours of his administration in 2001, including the infamous pardon of Marc Rich, the fugitive commodities trader convicted of tax evasion and selling oil to Iran in violation of a U.S. embargo.

The archivists acted according to guidelines set down by Mr. Clinton. All told, some 1,500 pages of documents are being redacted or kept secret, including 300 pages on the pardon selection process, including reports on why the Clinton Justice Department opposed certain pardons. Mr. Clinton pardoned two men who each paid Hugh Rodham, Hillary Clinton's brother, some $200,000 to lobby the White House in search of a pardon. One was sought for a drug dealer and another for someone convicted of mail fraud and perjury. Mr. Clinton denied knowing anything about the payments before making his decisions.

While the decision to withhold the pardon materials was made by Clinton library archivists, who work for the federal government, Mr. Clinton had the right to review their decision and have the documents released. But Bruce Lindsey, his former deputy White House counsel, declined to examine them, which means they will remain under lock and key for the duration of this presidential campaign. How convenient.

Posted by John Kranz at 2:22 PM | Comments (1)
But johngalt thinks:

"Most secretive politician in America today?" Senator Clinton? I must've missed the news when Dick Cheney moved to Canada.

Damn it's great to see Democrats badmouth other Democrats! Enjoy it while it lasts, kids.

Posted by: johngalt at March 8, 2008 10:26 AM

March 6, 2008

O Ba Ma O My

Commentary would be superfluous,

Posted by John Kranz at 7:38 PM | Comments (4)
But johngalt thinks:

If I thought that a President Obama would provoke black individual empowerment and make them all stop blaming "the man" for their problems, I'd vote for him.

If I thought that a President Obama would make everyone at every economic station see his own position in terms of where he came from and where he could go with his own effort instead of where his neighbor is, I'd vote for him.

If I thought that the enemies of freedom throughout the world would somehow go away if every soldier, airman, sailor and marine were stationed within our borders, I'd vote for a President Obama.

If I thought it was important for "the world" to admire America for some superficial reason, I'd vote for a President Obama.

But I don't, because it won't and it isn't.

People of dagny's little sister's generation would call me cynical and reactionary (if their public school educations had taught them what those words mean.)

I call them gullible: Change! Hope! A world free from fear! Hallelujah! Praise Obama! (Hell, if it were that easy we'd have done it a long time ago.)

Posted by: johngalt at March 8, 2008 11:12 AM
But dagny thinks:

Hallelujah Brother! Obama's form of collectivism has all the bad qualities of a religion and lacks the redeeming one. In this country, religion is VOLUNTARY, at least for now.

Posted by: dagny at March 8, 2008 11:25 AM
But jk thinks:

Yeah, but it's got a nice beat. And the people who support him are so cool and attractive. O Ba Ma O Ba Ma O Ba Ma O Ba Ma O Ba Ma O Ba Ma O Ba Ma O Ba Ma O Ba Ma O Ba Ma O Ba Ma O Ba Ma O Ba Ma O Ba Ma O Ba Ma O Ba Ma

Posted by: jk at March 8, 2008 12:45 PM
But johngalt thinks:

Apple computer buyers and other "cool folk" are powerless to resist - the "O-Borg-Ma."

I do see some of his mojo wearing off though.

Posted by: johngalt at March 8, 2008 2:06 PM

This Is The Way Hope Ends

The next big primary is Pennsylvania on April 22. The GOP race is over. What will the press talk about?

Rezko In Debt $50 Million; How Did He Afford Obama Lot?

Accused Illinois fixer Antoin "Tony" Rezko is in debt by $50 million and relies on "family" handouts of $7,500 a month to pay monthly costs, according to a previously sealed court transcript reviewed by ABC News.

I wish my family would handout $7500 a month. I could buy a nice little place in Chicago...with some adjacent land...

Posted by John Kranz at 11:51 AM

In Victory, Magnanimity

The folks at Camp Clinton sure know how to savor victory:


For the bruised and bitter staff around Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, Tuesday's death-defying victories in the Democratic presidential primaries in Ohio and Texas proved sweet indeed. They savored their wins yesterday, plotted their next steps and indulged in a moment of optimism. "She won't be stopped," one aide crowed.

And then Clinton's advisers turned to their other goal: denying Mark Penn credit.

With a flurry of phone calls and e-mail messages that began before polls closed, campaign officials made clear to friends, colleagues and reporters that they did not view the wins as validation for the candidate's chief strategist. "A lot of people would still like to see him go," a senior adviser said.

Clearly, these are the "bruised and bitter staff " we need to restore America's battered image in the world.

Posted by John Kranz at 11:25 AM

March 5, 2008

The Limbaugh Effect

I don't know that the talk radio doyen is actually claiming credit, but I have heard a lot about this today. Rush Limbaugh tells his Republican listeners to vote for Senator Clinton in the primary. Too tactical by half for my taste. Even though I still root for her to win the nomination, I don't think I'd've done it.

I turned on Fox & Friends this morning to see the final numbers and the hosts were pushing this story hard. "We've received 1200 emails from Texas Republicans who claim they did!" I would question how many of the 1200 really did, but I'd further call that noise against millions of votes cast. Tom Bevan at RCP does a back-of-the-envelope and is pretty skeptical as well:

It's a close call, but unless the vast majority of Republicans who voted for Clinton (more than 80%) did so at Rush's suggestion, they probably didn't put Clinton over the top. They may have given her a point or two bump in the end, but it seems unlikely they were the deciding factor for Clinton last night.

If she is elected, these people are going to have to look themselves in the mirror for four to eight years. I still tell my wife to forgive herself for voting for Perot in 1992.

UPDATE: David Weigel at Reason is less skeptical but I remain unconvinced. (HT--Insty)

Posted by John Kranz at 2:41 PM

February 29, 2008


It's Goolsbee?

I love to bash the Democratic front runner as much as the next guy, but I did not think that the CTV story had legs. CTV had claimed that an Obama advisor told the Canadian Government to ignore Obamagoguery as campaign rhetoric, just a workin' man tryin' to pick up a few Buckeye State delegates.

Today, the chatter is that it is Austen Goolsbee, the Chicago wunderkind and Obama economic advisor. If this is true, this story is serious. People in the know were all wondering when or whether Goolsbee was going to reign in Senator Obama's protectionism. If he was complicit in an orchestrated lie, this will not go away.

Unless Goolsbee does. And Goolsbee is the Senator's last tether to real economics. A lot of centrist bloggers threw their support to Obama early on, based on the Goolsbee connection. The nutroots are not gong to leave him, but center left libertarian types will lose their comfort.

HotAir is on this story without really appreciating who Austen Goolsbee is (they don't collect Economist Trading Cards over there). Jake Tapper has ABC confirming a refusal to deny:

ABC News' Jennifer Parker spoke to Goolsbee, a University of Chicago economics professor, Thursday who would not confirm or deny that he had a conversation with Georges Rioux, the Canadian Consulate General in Chicago. Rioux, in meetings this week in Ottawa, would also neither confirm nor deny any conversation took place. Both men did say that they know each other.

Both Obama and the Canadian Embassy have denied that the CTV story is true.

If you're not having fun, you're not paying attention.

Posted by John Kranz at 1:15 PM


Hillary Clinton whines:

"Every so often I just wish that it were a little more of an even playing field," she said, "but, you know, I play on whatever field is out there."

Ah yes, if only she were a black man, things would be so much easier.

Posted by Harrison Bergeron at 9:12 AM | Comments (1)
But jk thinks:

She thinks running as a woman is hard, she should try running as a Republican.

Posted by: jk at February 29, 2008 12:11 PM

February 26, 2008

Bitter Hillary

As the likelihood of a Hillary presidency slowly fades into the abyss, she has revealed her true self -- bitter, antagonistic, and elitist. At tonight's debate, Hillary saw fit to reference the SNL skit I tried to post earlier (it's now below the fold...). There is nothing that I enjoy more than watching the Clintons complain about the media (what goes around, comes around).

Posted by Harrison Bergeron at 11:09 PM | Comments (1)
But jk thinks:

I watched the whole thing (life? me?) and was struck yet again by how alike ALL their positions are. With no policy differences to debate, 90 minutes is spent arguing who hated NAFTA more, and who hated NAFTA first, or the microscopic differences between her view of socialized medicine and his. I fear for the Republic.

Posted by: jk at February 27, 2008 11:00 AM

February 25, 2008

The Democratic Debate

Posted by Harrison Bergeron at 9:30 PM

Clinton Tests Out Populist Appoach

That's not my headline, that a bylined story in the Washington Post.

Blasting "companies shamelessly turning their backs on Americans" by shipping jobs overseas and railing that "it is wrong that somebody who makes $50 million on Wall Street pays a lower tax rate than somebody who makes $50,000 a year," Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton increasingly sounds like one of her old Democratic rivals, former senator John Edwards of North Carolina.

Not to kick a dolly when she's down, as Drusilla would say, but this woman has planned to run for President for decades, and she is now on her sixth theme. I am not amazed at pandering, that's the nature of the beast. But I am surprised at the "throw it all out there and see what sticks" message creation.

UPDATE: Larry Kudlow speculates:

Now I’m no psychiatrist, far from it, but I think a simple answer is that Senator Clinton could be depressed. She seems deflated. Down in the dumps.

Look, depression is a serious problem. It’s also a multibillion-dollar business. Three of the more popular drugs in the market today to treat it are Pfizer’s Zoloft, Eli Lilly’s Prozac, and GlaxoSmithKline’s Paxil. Maybe Hillary’s taking meds, but they’re just not working for her? Could that be why she’s always attacking Big Pharma?

Posted by John Kranz at 11:17 AM

February 20, 2008

Remember This Guy?

Like Andrew Sullivan, the great Chris Matthews still peeks his head out (of where?) on occasion. Megan McArdle posted this on Instapundit.

That's all you need to know about the election this year.

Posted by John Kranz at 7:16 PM | Comments (2)
But At The Water Cooler thinks:

An Obama reading of the "I have a dream" speech would be very inspiring.

Posted by: At The Water Cooler at February 21, 2008 2:12 PM
But jk thinks:

You should hear his "A Night Before Christmas."

Posted by: jk at February 21, 2008 2:38 PM


My first hope for a bitter Democratic race and convention, and my second hope for the less charismatic Senator Clinton to prevail, were dealt severe blows on the icy tundra of Lambeau Field last night. John Fund wraps it up in Political Diary:

Exit polls in Wisconsin paint a grim picture for Hillary Clinton. Some 53% of Democratic voters thought she engaged in unfair negative campaigning, and fully 35% said they would be unhappy if she were the Democratic nominee. Such findings will certainly have an impact on the superdelegates who are likely to ultimately to decide the Democratic nomination and who believe electability is Job One for any nominee.

Almost as disturbing for Mrs. Clinton was her collapse among key demographic groups that supported her in earlier primaries. She only tied Mr. Obama among white women in Wisconsin, while losing white men 59% to 38%. She lost voters without college degrees and lost every age group except senior citizens. Mr. Obama won a staggering 71% of voters under the age of 30, a group that turned out in record numbers for a primary.

Apply that template to the upcoming March 4 contests in Ohio and Texas: Mrs. Clinton looks likely to lose both of those states, which would severely diminish her chances of swaying superdelegates into her corner with an argument that she can win the crucial big states in the fall.

Even if Mrs. Clinton recovers and does well from here on out, she would have to win 65% of the remaining delegates in order to regain the lead from Barack Obama. That near-impossibility effectively means that any superdelegates who ultimately support her would have to do so in full knowledge that they are voting for the candidate who was not the first choice of Democratic voters.

Posted by John Kranz at 2:03 PM

February 19, 2008

Chelsea's Job

Sen. Hillary Clinton took a swipe at her daughter's profession today at an economic roundtable discussion at a restaurant in Parma, Ohio, suggesting wealthy investment bankers and hedge fund managers on Wall Street aren't doing real 'work.'

The former first lady's daughter, Chelsea Clinton, works for New York-based hedge fund Avenue Capital Group. She previously worked in New York for McKinsey & Company, her first job after graduating with her master's degree from Oxford University.

Amusing. Well, Chelsea has stated that she isn't happy with her health care plan, maybe she can look for a "real" job with a better plan.

Posted by Harrison Bergeron at 7:47 PM | Comments (1)
But jk thinks:

Real work. Like the U.S. Senate or First Lady of Arkansas.

Posted by: jk at February 19, 2008 9:26 PM

Obama is not a libertarian

Okay, okay. I know that the title of this post will provoke laughter from fellow ThreeSourcers, however, wonkish liberals love to paint their candidates as the real libertarians in that they are for individual rights by ignoring issues such as economic freedom and the right to bear arms. Jeffrey Rosen is the latest to attempt to paint Obama as the libertarian.

Of course, David Weigel looks at the evidence and concludes:

Obama is a civil libertarian, except when he is not.

Posted by Harrison Bergeron at 1:05 PM | Comments (1)
But jk thinks:

Bending over to circus-freakish levels to be fair, this is exactly what prompted me to call myself a Prosperitarian.

Dagny referred to the Patriot Act (booo, hiss!) last week and one must concede that a Democratic president would be more diligent in protecting your right to borrow books from the government anonymously.

There is a seed crystal of liberty in there but I am happy to trade that for more effective rule of law. Keep the NYSE open and you can eavesdrop on my calls to foreigners, providing any evidence is not admissible in a domestic trial.

Libertarians pull their hair out when they hear that (though all the ones I know are bald) and inevitably start quoting Mr. Franklin. I have yet to be shown one thing in the vile Patriot Act that I cannot stomach, yet my Democrat friends (with very good hair) always tell me that they are the true friends of liberty because they will close Gitmo, repeal the patriot act -- oh, and double my taxes.

Posted by: jk at February 19, 2008 1:43 PM

February 18, 2008

How Can She Be Proud?

MILWAUKEE -- So what did Michelle Obama think of the United States before her husband decided he wanted to run the place?

“For the first time in my adult life, I am proud of my country,” she told a Milwaukee crowd today, “because it feels like hope is making a comeback.”

By being proud of this country, is she not endorsing slavery, the propping up of foreign dictators, and the genocide of the indigenous population? No doubt life has completely sucked for the Obamas up 'till now, but let's not go overboard, Michelle.

Hat-tip: K-LO at The Corner.

Posted by John Kranz at 5:53 PM

Too Rich

I try not to laugh. Keep in mind, political parties are private businesses -- they may make and keep any rules they wish. But the Democratic Party, Whoooo boy! WaPo:

The Texas Puzzle: System Worries Clinton Backers

What Clinton aides discovered is that in certain targeted districts, such as Democratic state Sen. Juan Hinojosa's heavily Hispanic Senate district in the Rio Grande Valley, Clinton could win an overwhelming majority of votes but gain only a small edge in delegates. At the same time, a win in the more urban districts in Dallas and Houston -- where Sen. Barack Obama expects to receive significant support -- could yield three or four times as many delegates.

"What it means is, she could win the popular vote and still lose the race for delegates," Hinojosa said yesterday. "This system does not necessarily represent the opinions of the population, and that is a serious problem."

The disparity in delegate distribution is just one of the unusual aspects of Texas's complex system for apportioning delegates. The scheme has been in use for two decades but is coming under increased scrutiny because the March 4 presidential contest is the first in years that gives the state a potentially decisive voice in choosing the party's nominee.

Posted by John Kranz at 5:17 PM

Chuck Schumer and ThreeSources

I thought it was just me. I was watching Senator Chuck Schumer on Meet the Press yesterday. And he used the word "internecine" about 11 times in three paragraphs. And he pronounced it funny.

Today I see Ann Althouse noticed as well. She found his sudden use of less-than-common words more nefarious than benign.

Clearly, he came to Tim Russert's table ready to use the word "internecine" to fend off efforts to get him to debate what the right rule is about the superdelegates and the Florida and Michigan delegates. I'm suspicious of people who suddenly start using and reusing a word that people don't normally say. Schumer didn't even know how to pronounce it.

To be fair, Miriam Webster gives five different pronunciations and the oleaginous Senator's is on the list. All the same, I found myself expecting Senator Durbin to say "stunning exegesis."

More important than language, it represented two contentious -- dare I use it -- ˌin-tər-ˈne-ˌsēn debates on two Sunday talk shows. Schumer and Durbin are apparently housemates (I am hoping not in the James Buchannan - William Rufus King sense) but they were offering little quarter. Unless either Senator Obama or Clinton can run away with the Democratic race here, there will be 49% dispirited Dems after Denver.

Less civil was FOX News Sunday's square off between Ohio Governor Ted Strickland and Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle. They were civil, but both were drawing lines and preparing for a fight. I don't want to make fun of a man with a disability -- but is Governor Strickland okay? He appeared to be having a seizure during the more acrimonious parts of his debate. (I'm really not kidding. Here's a YouTube of the interview. The whole thing is worth a watch, but Gov. Strickland seems to have problems starting around 4:00 crescendoing at 6:00.)

Obama's forces (Durbin and Doyle) are saying that votes should count; Clinton's (Strickland and Schumer) that you can't change the rules in the middle of the game. This could be fun.

Posted by John Kranz at 10:44 AM

February 15, 2008

Theme Songs

Hillary chose "Don't Stop Believin'" by Journey after it was featured on the Sopranos. It fits. The Clintons are sort of like the mob of the Democratic Party, so it makes sense to pay homage to the Sopranos. Also, the song is outdated and overplayed, which sufficiently summarizes Hillary and her campaign.

However, the greatest theme song for any candidate would be if Barack Obama chose "Candy Man" by Sammy Davis Jr. I admit I got this idea from Rush Limbaugh when I was stuck in traffic, but nevertheless check out the lyrics and tell me they don't fit:

Who can take a sunrise,
Sprinkle it with dew?
Cover it in chocolate and a miracle or two
The candyman, the candyman can,
The candyman can 'cause he mixes it with love
and makes the world taste good

Who can take a rainbow,
Wrap it in a sigh?
Soak it in the sun and make the stra'bry lemon pie
The candyman? The candyman can
The candyman can 'cause he mixes it with love
and makes the world taste good

The Candyman makes
everything he bakes
Satisfying and delicious.
Talk about your childhood wishes.
You can even eat the dishes!

Who can take tomorrow,
Dip it in a dream?
Separate the sorrow and collect up all the cream,
The candyman? The Candyman can, the candyman can
The candyman can 'cause he mixes it with love
and makes the world taste good
And the world tastes good
'cause the candyman thinks it should

Utter nonsense, just like his campaign.

We are all for hope. We are all for the future. We are all against the idiots in Washington. Try some substance.

Posted by Harrison Bergeron at 8:17 PM | Comments (3)
But johngalt thinks:

Don't forget Mike Huckabee's de facto theme song 'More Than a Feeling' by Boston.

Posted by: johngalt at February 15, 2008 10:02 PM
But johngalt thinks:

On the bright side, if Obama wins the nomination he won't be able to keep up the shuck and jive all the way to November. Even CNN would call him on it.

Posted by: johngalt at February 15, 2008 10:04 PM
But jk thinks:

That would seem to leave Team America, World Police still available for McCain...

Posted by: jk at February 16, 2008 4:57 PM

Hillary v. Putin

Hillary loves to talk about how President Bush has ruined our reputation in the world and is far from diplomatic. She talks about it so much, she must have come to like W's alleged attitude, as she claimed a month ago (how did I miss this?) that Vladamir Putin "doesn't have a soul." It's great to see that our diplomatic relations will not succumb to the cowboy flippancy any longer.

Oh, and for the record, this was Putin's response:

At a minimum, a head of state should have a head.

Posted by Harrison Bergeron at 1:56 PM

February 13, 2008


The Junior Senator from Illinois rolls out his economic proposal. $210,000,000,000 over ten years. $60,000,000,000 for infrastructure and $150,000,000,000 for "'green collar' jobs to develop more environmentally friendly energy sources."

That's a lot of zeroes, you might say. "Where will that money come from?" you might ask. "Aren't you supposed to spell out a number at the beginning of a sentence?" you might chisel. Well, Yup, You, and Yup.

"This agenda is paid for," Mr. Obama said as the Republican National Committee promoted an "Obama Spend-O-Meter" online to track his proposals and portray him as a tax-and-spend liberal. Mr. Obama explained that the money for his spending proposals will come from ending the Iraq war, cutting tax breaks for corporations, taxing carbon pollution and raising taxes on high income earners.

To recap: we're going to exercise more government control of the private sector and in the States' ambit. We're going to expand the scope, size, and cost of government in unconstitutional areas. And we will pay for it by abdicating the true, constitutional, government responsibility for national defense, and by enacting further wealth redistribution, taxing productivity, and by invoking the phantom call for less corporate welfare which sounds very good but will never materialize the way our government is constructed.

Yes we can!

Posted by John Kranz at 5:56 PM | Comments (2)
But John thinks:

I wonder, if the people working in, so called "green jobs" are successful in killing the fossil fuel industry, what happens to the hundreds of thousands of people who work in that industry?

Posted by: John at February 14, 2008 6:49 PM
But johngalt thinks:

That's a good question my friend. I can think of several answers that Obama might give:

1) "You mean Bush's cronies? Who cares!"

2) "We don't really intend to kill the fossil fuel industry since that would cripple American industry and commerce and there'd be nobody left to pay for my programs with their tax dollars. We just want to placate our naturist anti-capitalist constituents and remind profitable corporations who's the boss."

And the one that might actually pass his lips:

3) "If you have HOPE for the possibility of CHANGE in the FUTURE then there's no limit to the DREAMS we can achieve TOGETHER."

Posted by: johngalt at February 17, 2008 6:11 PM


Senator Barack Obama is riding pretty high these days. Regular readers know that, while there is nothing more fun that watching Senator Clinton lose, I am more concerned when I think of "the most liberal member of the Senate" seated at 1600 Pennsylvania with a filibuster proof majority.

Prof. Greg Mankiw -- like the rest of the country -- has been trying to figure out where Sen. Obama stands. Mankiw calls trade a "key litmus test," and finds that the news is not good:

We can't keep playing the same Washington game with the same Washington players and expect a different result – because it's a game that ordinary Americans are losing....

It's a game where trade deals like NAFTA ship jobs overseas and force parents to compete with their teenagers to work for minimum wage at Wal-Mart.

I join his supporters in one thing: that speech really does make me cry.

Posted by John Kranz at 2:26 PM

February 10, 2008

The Difference

Hugh Hewitt wrote a book called “If It's Not Close, They Can't Cheat" in which he claimed that Republicans needed to win decisively to overcome shenanigans by the Democrats.

I purport that the Clintons have far better access to those levers that tip close elections than do Senator Obama's people. I watch the young people weeping at the magnificence that is the Junior Senator from Illinois and I cannot help but think "those people will soon learn the difference between hope and audacity ."

If Obama can run up the delegates than Hugh's Law will take effect. But if it is close when they head to Denver, Senator Clinton will be the nominee.

Chris Bowers at the Open Left Blog says that he, like Donna Brazille, is not going to take it:

If someone is nominated for POTUS from the Democratic Party despite another candidate receiving more poplar support from Democratic primary voters and caucus goers, I will resign as local precinct captain, resign my seat on the Pennsylvania Democratic State Committee, immediately cease all fundraising for all Democrats, refuse to endorse the Democratic "nominee" for any office, and otherwise disengage from the Democratic Party through all available means of doing so.

Posted by John Kranz at 12:22 PM | Comments (2)
But johngalt thinks:

From what I've been able to discern about the Democrat nominating process, it ain't very democratic. True, all of their contests are proportional, meaning that each candidate gets a share of the delegates from each state instead of "winner take all" as many of the GOP contests are and, as the Electoral College process works. And yet, as we're witnessing with Senators Clinton and Obama, sometimes such a contest may be closely divided and "arrangements" may have to be made to see to it that the party nominates "the right" person. And so they have what are called "super delegates." These political equivalents of Association of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences members are not bound by anything but "the power of their convictions" when deciding which candidate to support at the Academy Awar... err... convention. If rank and file Democrats can't decide or, worse yet, lean slightly the "wrong" way, these "smarter" delegates will jump in the breech to "fix" things.

While the DNC calls them "Super Delegates" I call them party Apparatchiki.

Posted by: johngalt at February 10, 2008 1:56 PM
But Perry Eidelbus thinks:

The Democratic Party's candidates invariably campaign on populism, but the inner politics reveal that their party functions like a oligarchy -- ironic considering the Dems love to claim that "the rich" control the country.

If you check out QandO, you'll see this feeling of "We might be betrayed" is becoming widespread. We could certainly use another split among liberals to take votes away from the Dem nominee, like in the 2000 election.

Posted by: Perry Eidelbus at February 11, 2008 12:42 PM

January 30, 2008

Pictures are worth a thousand words...

Via Yahoo!

Posted by Harrison Bergeron at 11:02 PM | Comments (1)
But jk thinks:

Merciful Zeus! If she wins the nomination, we might have to replace the blog header with that.

Posted by: jk at January 31, 2008 11:28 AM

January 29, 2008

Mark Steyn Endorses Hillary

Kidding! But he does echo my view:

Here's a thought to chill Andrew [Stuttaford]: Is Barack the new Blair? That is, if elected, will he be able (like Tone's first ministry) to push through big transformative changes under cover of the sheer dazzle of his glamor?

My trouble is that I cannot follow through. I truly share this belief and feel the cause of freedom hinges on my supporting Senator Clinton. But I do love to see her lose.

Posted by John Kranz at 7:43 PM

January 27, 2008

Twenty Eight Points!

Although I still feel that President Hillary Clinton could do less damage to the cause of liberty than President Barack Obama, it does not mean that I don't love seeing Her Collectivistness lose big. I saw her speech in Tennessee, where she said that "now the eyes of the nation are focused on Tennessee" when the eyes were clearly focused on the Palmetto State, where she was losing about two to one. Her voice was raspy and her presence uncharming.

Senator Obama seemed energized:

"The choice in this election is not about regions or religions or genders," Obama said at a boisterous victory rally. "It's not about rich versus poor, young versus old and it's not about black versus white. It's about the past versus the future."

Senator Edwards came in third in his home state. Though PowerLine notes: "[T]here's some solace for Edwards. According to Fox News, exit polling shows that he did well among voters who favor the war in Iraq and think the economy is in good shape."

Anybody who is not having fun this year is simply not trying. On to Florida!

UPDATE Bad math repaired in headline (I said 26).

Posted by John Kranz at 1:53 PM