August 31, 2004
Please Send Water
Speaking of dorks, there are some really dorking posts in this dorky-looking Bonfire of the Vanities hosted by mypetjawa.
Dems Let Me Down
When I found out the Super Zeroes were running around NYC, I hoped the Democrats were finally learning to inject a little levity into the tense, political environment. After seeing some pictures of Miss Leadership, Enron Ed, Hal E. Burton, and Lt. Bush I realized they just look like dorks. Compare them to Communists for Kerry and figure out witch side has a better, more intelligent sense of humor.
SwiftVets Ad #4
The lastest SwiftVets ad deals with Kerry tossing "his" medals. It's ok. It's no where near as powerful as when the vets speak for themselves. It will keep them and their attacks on Kerry in the news.
Lilek's on McCain
McCain – eh. Didn’t listen. He reminds me of Don Rickles’ brother. The smart one who went to college and never made as much money as his famous sibling, and it rankled. Oh how it rankled.He has pictures too!
Rich Galen's a class act:
The best part of my day, however, was at the ice cream store across the street from my hotel where I had stopped in to buy a root beer float with chocolate ice cream. Just as I was finishing my order a fireman walked in and stood behind me.
"Not a Bad First Day"
When the "Blond Babes for Bush" aren't reveling in Sean Hannity's shadow or doing an excellent job of self-promotion (they did get a mention on TAM) they sell Mary Kay products. By 2008 they'll all be driving to the convention in their pink Cadillacs.
Bush Headed to Wisconsin
President Bush will be at State Fair Park the day after accepting his party's nomination. Here are the details:
The day after the Republican National Convention ends, President George W. Bush will return to Wisconsin.
August 30, 2004
Bravo John and Rudy
Night 1 featured GOP moderates Sen. John McCain and Rudy Guiliani. Both delivered scathing attacks on Bush's opponents. McCain defended the Islamist War in general and the Iraq War in particular. While plodding through his civil remarks and fighting with the audience over applause lines, he got all the delegates in a froth when he said these words:
Our choice wasn't between a benign status quo and the bloodshed of war. It was between war and a graver threat. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise. Certainly not a disingenuous film maker who would have us believe, my friends, who would have us believe that Saddam's Iraq was an oasis of peace, when in fact -- when in fact it was a place of indescribable cruelty, torture chambers, mass graves and prisons that destroyed the lives of the small children inside their walls.
The sweaty, grimy "champion of the common people" was in the press area soaking up the negative vibes. Michael Moore probably took more pride in that moment than sitting with President Carter during the Democratic convention.
Rudy was really good in the way he made it clear how Sen. Kerry waffles and flip-flops on issues. It was red meat to the delegates but it was full of substance that should be emmulated by champions of the President across the country. The attacks on Kerry made up for the occasional rambling.
Note in both speeches no mention of the questions behind Kerry's war service or his anti-war activism.
Here's some reaction I found in the blogosphere:
In the Hot Seat
Ari Fleischer's book is titled Taking Heat. Today, he took the heat in Bloggers Corner at the RNC.
"Ari Fleischer with the Bloggers"
Protesting the Protesters
Kfir Alfia and his Protest Warriors have his the Big Apple and the big time with an interview in Newsweek. Way before Alfia hit the big time he was a caller on Rush Limbaugh and the subject of this TAM interview.
"Interview with Protest Warrior"
I'm Detecting a Pattern
The USA Today/Gallup poll offers more evidence that Bush is doing well in Wisconsin. We're not a hard-core Republican state. So if Bush takes the Badger state I see him getting a lot of other battleground states making the final outcome more lopsided than most people think.
[via Political Wire]
Either the MTV crowd didn't think the Video Music Awards were the place for politicking or they think the Bush twins are hotter.
"Back to Basics"
"Kerry Daughters Booed at MTV Video Music Awards"
Two for One
It appears two Attas were going into the Czech Republic in the spring of 2000. That certainly would confuse investigators. Instead of Atta the hijacker hanging around Prague's Ruzyne Airport it was Atta the Pakistani businessman. However, the two Attas don't explain where Atta the hijacker was 04.08.01. That's the day a Czech informant claims he saw Atta meet with an Iraqi intelligence officer in Prague.
"In Prague, a tale of 2 Attas"
August 29, 2004
According to a Rasmussen poll, President Bush is head of Sen. John Kerry 48%-45%. We're getting to the point where polls actually start to mean something. This is good news for Bush. He narrowly lost the Badger state in 2000, but it has a few trends going his way. Even though the state has a Democratic governor and two Democratic Senators, Wisconsinites lived under a popular Republican governor, Tommy Thompson, for 16 years. We're not afraid to vote R. Second, recent scandals have helped Republicans. Two years ago, the liberal-dominated (yet non-partisan) Milwaukee County Board approved a budget-busting pension plan for county workers. This caused such firestorm that a number of county supervisors and the county executive were recalled and replaced with Republican or more conservative people. The Democratic State Attorney General Peg Lautenschlager was arrested for drunk driving and fined for improper use of a state vehicle.
There's an air of stink around the Democrats, but that won't be enough for strong Bush bashers. Winning Wisconsin will come down to GOTV--Get Out The Vote. In the past the Democrats have played this game extremely well. However, the GOP is mounting their biggest GOTV drive yet. It began last spring with training sessions and calling known Bush supporters. It has continued with finding places for lawn signs and working parades and fairs. The Dems are working hard in Madison and Milwaukee. The Republicans are working in the Milwaukee suburbs and the Fox River Valley to counter the liberal city vote. We'll see if the GOP's 72-hour operation is organized and effective enough to make Wisconsin a red state.
[via Viking Pundit]
For Some, Times Stands Still
100,000+ people came out of their homes, RVs, tents, and enironmentally-friendly caves to decry President Bush. Roger Simon is there and thought he was back in 1968. An NYC cop also thought the protesters had some temporal problems. "It's like fuggin' 9/11 never happened."
"Hey, Hey, LBJ..."
UPDATE: Slant Point has an interesting factoid:
But I want everyone to think about one thing. I don't have press credentials yet. I pick them up today at 4:30. And I still managed to get to the front row along side the march. This is not because of any great journalistic saavy, but because no one was there watching. There are more people watching the Halloween and Thanksgiving Day parades. In fact, I had a harder time seeing the Mermaid Parade in Coney Island than this.
Fitting Call Letters
The Left is returning to it's 60s roots. Air America is now on San Diego's KLSD. Ken Kesey and his Merry Pranksters would be proud.
"Liberal Talk Radio Network Air America Debuts in S.D. County"
August 28, 2004
The Weirdos Have Arrived
The protesters have taken NYC. There are the Elephants Against Republicans--politicizing Ground Zero in a way Bush-bashers screamed against earlier this year; the coward (note the covered face) who equates President Bush with Satan; an anti-Starbucks protester who looks like he had one too many espressos; and a bunch of bikers for protesting something.
This will only get better. I hope some enterprising weblogger in NYC finds some really ridiculous protesters for all the world to see. Even better, someone should have a "Mumia Scorecard" to keep track of all the signs, t-shirts, and chants for the cop killer.
Suppose the protesters make the GOP convention into a replay of the Democratic convention in Chicago in 1968. Which candidate benefits? In 1968 it was Nixon who used the law and order angle to persuade skiddish voters. If NYC 2004 were to be like Chicago 1968 John Kerry would appear to benefit, right? No. Chaos (or appearances of chaos) plays to Bush's strength. He's been running on the theme of steady leadership in a time of international chaos. Sep. 11 brought the chaos of terrorism home to the U.S., and Bush responded strongly by invading Afghanistan and Iraq. Kerry has floundered his way into looking like a political opportunist always jumping to the side that is most advantageous. The RNC has made a very convincing case that Kerry stood on both sides of the Iraq War depending on how best it positioned him for his run at the White House. That's a far cry from steady hand of the President. Advantage: Bush.
New Media Revolution
The old adage said: "Never pick a fight with someone who buys ink by the barrel."
That doesn't apply today, in this new media revolution we are witnessing, where the ink is electrons beamed at your screen; they're free (and recyclable!).
The men at PowerLine are in the midst of a fight right now with a deputy editor of Minneapolis's StarTribune. The PowerLine guys didn't start the fight; the editor did. But, since it's his paper, he's the one who gets the last word.
I encourage you, if you're not aware of what is going on already, to check out PowerLine to see what is happening. Too much has happened in this last week for me to summarize here.
Even as recently as 10 (even 5?) years ago, when we wanted news, we counted on newspapers (and television) to investigate. Now, lowly amatuers are investigating and reporting and correcting the newspapers. However the "mainstream" media is not picking up on it; in fact, they still are in denial about the revolution that is taking place.
Tune In Tomorrow Night
If there are any TAM readers in Vancouver, B.C.--heck, are there any TAM readers in Canada--I want you to know I'll be on Rachel Marsden's radio show from 8:30-9:00 CDT. Those of you no where near Vancouver, you can listen to Rachel's show on the internet. I'll be part of a week-in-review. Expect talk about the SwiftVets, but I'm open to something more than all SwiftVets all the time. Any suggestions?
The SwiftVets' first ad finally makes the front page of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. No, chief political reporter Craig Gilbert doesn't examine the SwiftVets' charges and Kerry Edwards' counter-charges--leave that to the blogosphere. Instead, he reports on "how much bang for their buck" the SwiftVets got. For $500,000 and only one-thousandth of the total campaign ad traffic, the SwiftVets have transformed the entire Presidential race. Professor Ken Goldstein asks, "Have you ever seen anything in a presidential campaign just take control for 10 days?"
"Swift Boat Ad Has Outsize Impact"
The New Soldier
A Kerry ally is threatening legal action against those who post or link to the cover of The New Soldier. Don't be surprised at legal action to stop the electronic distribution of the book. (Since Kerry has dragged on the SwiftVet story for this long, he'd be dumb enough to draw attention to his anti-war book.) I'm glad I downloaded my copy. It may be the most interesting reading on Kerry I've done yet.
[via Little Miss Attila]
August 27, 2004
It Just Won't Die
Poor Paul Hamm. After winning a gold medal, he thought he was living a dream. The FIG turned it into a nightmare by flailing away trying to save face over a judging mistake that may or may not have cost a South Korean the gold. Hamm's back in the U.S. presumably to get away from this horrible experience, but the FIG sticks Hamm's nose in it by asking him to give his medal to bronze medalist Yang Tae-young. In the letter (reprinted in the extended entry), FIG president Bruno Grandi wrote, "The true winner of the all-around competition is Yang Tae-young." But on the FIG's website it states, "Paul Hamm cannot be responsible for a judging error." Hamm's not responsible, yet he should be the won to give up his prize. Also in the letter, Grandi writes, "At this moment in time, you are the only one who can make this decision." Yet he told a reporter,
He deserves the medal, and the ranking is clear. ... I respect totally Paul Hamm and all the decisions he makes. If he says give back the medal, I respect it. Don't give back the medal, I respect the decision. He is not responsible for anything.
Grandi wrote the letter because of a Hamm comment where he said, "If the FIG will decide that I have to give it back, I’ll do it." From my interpretation, Hamm would return his medal if the FIG declared Yang the winner. It hasn't done this. On their website, FIG wrote, "Respecting its rules, the FIG has not modified the final score and the ranking." Hamm is still champion.
The USOC came storming to Hamm's defense:
The USOC views this letter as a blatant and inappropriate attempt on the part of FIG to once again shift responsibility for its own mistakes and instead pressure Mr. Hamm into resolving what has become an embarrassing situation for the Federation. The USOC finds this request to be improper, outrageous and so far beyond the bounds of what is acceptable that it refuses to transmit the letter to Mr. Hamm.
Paul Hamm is supposed to be more benevolent than anyone in sports history. Because of a mistake he had nothing to do with he's supposed to ease FIG's embarassment by giving his gold medal to someone who didn't win it. That's not "fair-play" (to use Grandi's word); it's asking someone else to take responsibility for FIG's failure. Hamm thinks he's the gold medal winner, and according to the rules everyone participated under he is. FIG doesn't deny this. There's no time machine in sports where you can change one event without affecting anything after it.
Grandi and the FIG disgust me for trying to play on the conscience of a champion. For shame!
"Officials Ask Hamm to Give up Gold"
[FIG President Bruno Grandi's letter to Olympic champion Paul Hamm.]
Firstly may I extend to you and to the USA team my heartfelt congratulations for your magnificent results at the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens.
I have addressed this letter to you after having read the following statements attributed to you in the American press: “It was very hard to focus after what has happened the previous days. At this moment, I don’t feel that I have to give back my medal. If the FIG will decide that I have to give it back, I’ll do it. There are many different opinions about what I have to do. I can understand my Korean opponent. I believe that something is going to happen soon.”
This declaration, which gave me great pleasure, was made by a great gymnast and true champion who has the highest ethical values. This act, which demonstrates the highest level of honesty, places you amongst the true Olympic champions. I wish to confirm that your words grant you the highest esteem from the worldwide gymnastics family.
I wish to remind you that the FIG Executive Committee has admitted the error of judgement made on the Parallel Bars and suspended the three responsible judges, two from the A panel and the FIG Technical Committee member. Indeed, the start value of the Korean gymnast Yang Tae Young was given as 9.9 instead of 10. As a result, the true winner of the All-Around competition is Yang Tae Young.
If, (according to you declarations to the press), you would return your medal to the Korean if the FIG requested it, then such an action would be recognised as the ultimate demonstration of Fair-play by the whole world. The FIG and the IOC would highly appreciate the magnitude of this gesture.
At this moment in time, you are the only one who can make this decision.
With my bests regards and deepest respect,
Is this or is this not the weblog of Quentin Tarantino?
Technorati Needs a Hand
Technorati's Election 2004 weblog aggregator can't figure out what side of the political spectrum TAM's on. Anyone know of a way to enlighten Technorati?
August 26, 2004
Now He's Done It
It's one thing for a Presidential candidate to look like a dork by wearing a cheesehead, but to mess up Lambeau Field means you don't deserve a Packers fan's vote.
"The Frozen Tundra of ... Lambert Field?"
Kerry's House of Ketchup #24
And August is supposed to be a slow news month. Maybe it is, and that's why so many of us are all over John Kerry's four-month stay in Vietnam. The GOP convention starts in a few days with Kerry's new Band of Brothers ready with counter-zingers to a tightly-scripted media event.
New polls show Bush is on the ups. As usual, KHoK is interested in what the Iowa Electronic Markets think. Kerry has taken a steep dive in the Presidential Winner Take All Market and in the Presidential Vote Share Market. The SwiftVets just might be doing damage.
Remember some guy named John Edwards and how was the answer to the Kerry campaign? He's vaporized into the background noise like all Vice Presidential candidates do.
Let's see what some of the blogosphere thinks:
Join in the fun by linking to the House of Ketchup. If you have an MT-powered weblog, just trackback to this post, and it will appear below. If your weblog software is incapable of trackbacks use Kevin's Trackback Form.
Go Right Ahead, Oliver
Maybe Oliver Willis can convince David Brock to put some of the money he got from George Soros into trying to disbar John O'Neill. (It were sure beat paying those people to watch Fox News all day.) I'm sure O'Neill wouldn't back down since he dared John Kerry to sue him for libel.
"Should John O'Neill Be Disbarred/Punished?"
That's Just Mean
Look at the line up for day two of The Encore. Who do I see, Jimmy Eat World, The Gufs, or Robert Randolph? Why could these bands have been to the Big Gig instead of Summerfest, Jr?
No More Mr. Nice Guy
Alice Cooper says some LOL stuff on those rockers for Kerry:
To me, that's treason. I call it treason against rock 'n' roll because rock is the antithesis of politics. Rock should never be in bed with politics.
"Alice Cooper: Anti-Bush Acts Treasonous Morons" [via The Volokh Conspiracy]
UPDATE: Some people were quick on the trigger and only read part of Cooper's statement. He had to clarify that the rockers for Kerry are guilty of "treason against rock and roll," not the U.S.
"U.S. Soccer's Fab Five Go Out With Gold"
You can say that looks are deceiving when it came to the end of the U.S.-Spain men's basketball quarterfinal. With 23 seconds left in the game, a timeout was called for the U.S. team that had an 11-point lead. Coach Larry Brown claims he registered the timeout at the scorer's table (according to international rules) earlier and had no intention of embarassing Spain. Brown looked surprised the timeout was called, and pushed his players back onto the court when he realized what kind of perception he created. Spanish coach Mario Pesquera was furious and waved his finger in Brown's face after the game which set Brown off. Both coaches had to be restrained by their assistants.
"United States 102, Spain 94"
Can You Do This with Powerpoint?
If a goofy, convoluted chart is good enough for the NY Times, it's good enough for NRO.
Swiftvets Strike Again
The latest ad deals with Kerry
POWs Against Kerry
On the heels of the Swiftvets is Stolen Honor a new documentary on what former Vietnam POWs think of John Kerry. The clips are powerful. These men give us a glimpse of why they oppose Kerry. It isn't so much the medals, although that's a part, it's his anti-war actions that they think hurt others and the country.
Carlton Sherwood is producing the documentary. I'm doing some digging around on him to see if I can find more information about him besides being a Pulitzer Prize and Peabody Award winner. You know Media Matters and their ilk will be doing the same if they're not already.
Hey Hey We're the Bloggers!
Ladies and gentleman, here is your starting webloggers for the Republican National Convention. (It's also the first time I've seen pictures of these people.)
Knock 'em dead guys!
"Meet the Bloggers, Part Two"
August 25, 2004
Coordination or Legal Advice?
In a AP story about the lawyer who is helping the Swiftvets while working for Bush-Cheney is this:
Lawyers on the Democratic side are also representing both the campaign or party and outside groups running ads in the presidential race. Ginsberg's dual role has drawn attention because of an ad the Swift Boat Veterans group ran accusing Kerry of exaggerating his Vietnam War record, an issue that has dominated the campaign since early August.
And here's an example:
Joe Sandler, a lawyer for the DNC and a group running anti-Bush ads, MoveOn.org, said there is nothing wrong with serving in both roles at once.
Someone should tell Sen. Max Cleland to stuff it with his hypocritical grandstanding.
"Lawyer Advising Vets Quits Bush Campaign"
UPDATE: N. Z. Bear documents how another lawyer is tied into the Democrats and MoveOn.org. Will either Mr. Sandler or Mr. Reiff be resigning anytime soon? Will there even be pressure on them to? [via Wizbang]
Then there's La Shawn Barber who has a homey, red state feel to her writing, and has the good sense to link to TAM.
The passions surrounding Paul Hamm's gold medal have died down. After a few days of heated calls for Hamm to give up his medal to a South Korean that didn't win it, the ideas of giving up a medal or awarding a second gold have vanished. Good. Now Paul Hamm can start savoring his victory even though his father is ticked at a few people.
"Gymnastics Flap Gets Low Scores"
Kerri Walsh and Misty May took their domination of women's beach volleyball all the way to a gold medal. Their sweep of a Brazilian team capped off an undefeated run where they didn't even lose a game. So far, only the U.S. women's softball team has been more dominant.
"Fun, Frolic and Gold"
Another great story was hurdler Joanna Hayes who set an Olympic record in the 100m hurdles. The favorite, Canada's Perdita Felicien, hit the first bar. Hayes took advantage.
"Hayes Wins 100m Hurdles in Olympic Record"
August 24, 2004
Keeping Hardball Clean II
MATTHEWS: Welcome back to HARDBALL.
Pat Buchanan defended Malkin saying she said it was a "self-inflicted wound." There was a "misconception." Matthews balked at that telling Buchanan, "No, there wasn‘t." He then claimed Malkin had 12 times to clarify her stance. But anyone familiar to these cable news yap fests it's about debate on speed. It's about blurting out nuggets, not whole sentences. That's especially true with possible ADD sufferer Chris Matthews.
Matthews took one final shot at Malkin:
The question is, was it purposely—did he purposefully shoot himself or not? That was the question that was being suggested by that discussion.
The only reason the "discussion" (and I use that term very loosely) went down that path was because Matthews leaped to the conclusion that Malkin accused Kerry of shooting himself.
Chris doesn't need to let civility, respect, and truthfullness get in the way of "keeping his show clean."
UPDATE: Matthews should not only apologize to Malkin for his boarish behavior, but also for declaring the "self-inflicted wound" accusation too dirty for Hardball. Even the Kerry campaign admits that's how Kerry got the wound that earned him his first Purple Heart.
"Has Kerry Backed Off Of First Purple Heart Claim?"
I guess washing a child's mouth with a bar of soap when the child curses is out of the question too.
Leave the Golden Boy Alone
Michael Hunt offers some sense about Paul Hamm's gold medal:
Share the gold? It shouldn't even be on the table, and the USOC should be ashamed for even thinking about it. This isn't kiddie gymnastics, where everyone gets a prize for showing up. Credit the South Koreans for sticking up for their guy, but this isn't Salt Lake City, where the judging was fixed. It's just, well, weird beyond belief.
George Vecsey also gets it right.
Fortunately, FIG President Bruno Grandi sharply said the decision won't change including awarding Yang Tae Young a gold medal. And no, Hamm still shouldn't give his medal away nor should he be brow beaten in the media.
"Burden of Dispute Misplaced on Hamm"
August 23, 2004
Keep that Medal
USA Today's Christine Brennan is part of the "America should apologize for doing well" crowd. She put pen to paper and called for Olympic champion Paul Hamm to give his gold medal to South Korea's Yang Tae-young. In Brennan's view, "Hamm would reap benefits he cannot yet imagine; addition by subtraction, if you will." Hamm must relinquish his gold medal because "it [is] the right thing to do."
Metaphysical certitude in any human endeavor is impossible. Mistakes are made by everyone. In sport officials make mistakes often. Umpires call strikes that are no where near the strike zone. In basketball, referees miss charging fouls. In hockey, officials fail to call off-sides. In these sports, teams can't complain after the game is over that because of bad call they should receive credit for a partial victory.
In the men's all-around competition, the South Korean coaches could have and should have immediately complained about Yang's start value. That's the rule in gymnastics. They didn't do that, and Yang lost out on those precious points. Is it fair in some Platonic sense? No, but such utopianism only exists in books and the minds of Leftists.
I'm not a die-hard rules-are-rules guy. Common sense and logic should trump that. In this instance, everyone knew what the rules were, and they were followed. To go back and changes scores would be absurd because it would toss every gymnastics competition, past and future, into chaos. A winner would be chosen that day, but none of the participants would be sure the final standings would have any permanence. Days, weeks, months, even years could past, and someone could find something to question the results.
I'm sure if we looked hard enough at the replays of all Yang's performances we could find some flaw the judges missed. U.S. men's gymnastics coach Miles Avery said Yang should have been deducted 0.2 because of an extra hold on the parallel bars. Does Yang and the South Koreans really want to do that? Do sports fans really want to be stuck waiting for weeks of analysis and lawyerly gobble-dee-gook from the Court of Arbitration for Sport?
We also don't know what would have happened if Yang's parallel routine were correctly scored. Hamm knew how much he needed on the high bar to get the gold. Who's to say Hamm wouldn't have thrown in some even more difficult elements to pump up his score and top Yang? Who's to say Yang wouldn't have changed his routine knowing he was ahead? Paul Hamm has it exactly right:
We don't know what the outcome of the meet would have been. Maybe the other gymnast (Yang) would've relaxed going into high bar (the last event), maybe he would've made a mistake. Who knows? The point is we don't know. That's why a score has to be contested by the end of an event.
Playing "What If?" turns sport into a parlor game instead of the serious competition that this is. Thus, I've changed my mind: no second gold for the Yang. Unless we find some form of corruption, like in the 2002 figure skating scandal), the final results should be just that, final. At what point does a final decision really become final? In international competition we know: in an all-around the scores are set at the end of the rotation barring a protest. The rules were followed. Paul Hamm shouldn't be put on a guilt trip for winning. Leave him alone and let him enjoy his accomplishment.
"Only One Maneuver Remains: Give Up the Gold"
"USOC 'Willing to Consider' Second Gold in Gymnastics"
[Warning spoiler below.]
Paul Hamm took the silver medal in the high bar. He tied Italy's Igor Cassina with a 9.812. Based on a "complex tiebreaking formula used in gymnastics," to use the AP's words, Cassina won. Should Hamm be able to go back to the video tape and find one of Cassina's mistakes the judges missed? Of course not. But the South Koreans (and too many overly-sentimental Americans) want to jump into the Wayback Machine and make the past perfectly fair.
"Paul Hamm Waits Out Boos, Then Wins Silver"
There's Gold in Those Medals
With all that's happening with the Olympics you just want to read economics and business posts, right? Er, probably not. But check out the latest Carnival of the Capitalists.
Setting Drudge Straight
Drudge is trying to pump up Pat Buchanan's new book and himself by claiming he got some scoop. "DRUDGE breaks the embargo on the book."
The book's been on sale since last week, and you can get it from Amazon through the link Drudge provides.
If you want the book just go to your nearest Barnes & Noble. More than likely it will be prominently displayed since Buchanan has plenty of media exposure.
August 21, 2004
The Real Dream Team
Keeping Hardball Clean
MATTHEWS: What went out, it basically tracks what you did the other day on “Good Morning America.” And the question your staff put out, under your name, is, is Bush telling the truth, President Bush, when he said he had no special privileges or favoritism in jumping 150 places to get in the Air Guard in Texas?
But wait, there's more! Matthews then practically asks Kerry if Bush should prove he wasn't AWOL:
MATTHEWS: Is it accountable—should the president be accountable for skipping that—that physical when he was in the military?
If you thought that was all, here's another portion of the show:
MATTHEWS: Is it relevant that you served in combat and faced enemy fire and the president of the United States did not? Is that a relevant fact, when picking a commander in chief for the next four years?
I'm still not done. Here's some innuendo about Bush and Cheney testifying befor the Sep. 11 committee:
KERRY: Well, everybody bought into the intelligence. How—what bothers me about this administration is they‘ve even fought the effort to get to the bottom of why the intelligence was bad.
Are any of these accusations any worse than what Michelle Malkin said? My how Matthews keeps Hardball clean. It's so clean the mud's still dripping off it.
Hardball hasn't been on my required watching list since the 2000 Florida election mess. I briefly caught Michelle Malkin on the show, and how Chris Matthews laid into her. I especially liked Matthews' false piusness when he said, "We are going to keep things clean on this show. No irresponsible comments are going to be made on the show."
Matthews also did a fine job twisting up Larry Thurlow with process questions about the Bush campaign Thurlow would know nothing about. He barely addressed Thurlow's claims about Kerry.
"Ambush Journalism...Or My Evening with Caveman Chris Matthews"
The Swiftvets have a new ad. It's better than the first one because it's not a he said/he said debate. It's just Kerry's (in)famous Senate testamony in 1971 and the Swiftvets' reaction. These men were hurt and demoralized by Kerry's words. Also, it focuses on Kerry's barely-covered anti-war activities and his inability to appologize for "language [that] was sometimes excessive."
As the Washington Post reports, the Swiftvets are getting under Kerry Edwards' skins. One spokesman said, "Maybe if George Bush had seen combat up close his hired-gun mouthpiece wouldn't be so flip." Another took a page (or film cell) from Michael Moore and said, "Mr. McClellan needs to understand that John Kerry is not the type of leader who will sit and read My Pet Goat to a group of second-graders while America is under attack." These statements support the Bush campaign's notion that Kerry is "losing his cool."
If this ad gets people wondering about Kerry's anti-war efforts the next logical step would be to hammer on his Senate voting record on defense and intelligence issues. Bush is running radio ads in Wiscsonsin attacking Kerry for his lack of attendance at Senate Intelligence hearings. Steven Taylor has been writing about how little attention has been placed on that key information as to what policy would be in a Kerry Edwards administration. What happened in Washington, D.C., not Vietnam is where this election will be won.
[As a sidenote: The Washington Post also reports that the Swiftvets raised $300,000 through the internet (TAM's as cool as Wired News). Those Deaniac pioneers must sick to their stomachs that their techniques are being used against them.]
"The New Swift Ad"
"Would Finch Ever Pose Nude?"
Hamm's Medal Tainted?
Gymnastics judges admit they made a mistake that cost South Korean gymnast Yang Tae-young a gold that was awarded to Paul Hamm. The judges based their scoring on a 9.9 scale even though Yang's same routine was scored on 10 scale in the team qualifying and finals. A one-tenth addition would have vaulted (pun intended) Yang from bronze to gold beating Hamm by 0.051.
The International Gynmastics Federation (FIG) won't change the results saying the South Korean team didn't protest the score at the time of the rotation. Knowing Hamm had a long way to go to be in contention, they may have not been as adament in their complaint. After the fact, they realize how important the mistake was.
The FIG refuses to release the judges' names, but the AP reports Spain's Benjamin Bango and Columbia's Oscar Buitrago Reyes set the 9.9 starting value and the U.S.'s George Beckstead was the panel chairman. Others may have been involved, but only three judges were suspended. I want to know if these same judges worked the team qualifying and finals. If so, how could such an obvious mistake take place?
Should Paul Hamm give up his gold medal? Did he actually earn it? Would sportsmanship dictate he return the gold and accept the silver?
Paul Hamm earned that medal. He fell on the landing of his vault, yet turned some spectacular performances on his other events to leap from 12th place to 1st. Hamm had no power over the judges. He didn't force a screw up of Olympian proportions. Hamm only did what he had to do, and that's tumble and fly like he never did before. Someone who did so much doesn't deserved to be punished by an uncontrollable error.
Yet Yang also shouldn't be punished for something outside his control. He was denied a gold because some judges couldn't get their act together.
Reporters are comparing this judging mess to the figure skating fiasco in 2002 in Salt Lake City. Corrpution took place there, while incompetance happened in Athens. Even the South Koreans aren't complaining of corruption even though an American was one of the judges. Olympic officials came to a solution in 2002 by awarding two sets of gold medals. Awarding golds to both Hamm and Yang would be the best ending.
"Judging Error Led to Hamm's Gold"
"Hamm's Gold Was in Error, but He'll Keep It"
"Hamm to Keep Gold Despite Error"
"Shades of Salt Lake City for South Korea?"
"Do the Right Thing--Give S. Korean a Gold Medal, Too"
August 20, 2004
Lots of Good News
Who knows if I'll get any posting done since after work I'll be going to a Metallica concert. Here are some all-around feel good news items to satisfy your TAM cravings:
August 19, 2004
After Captain Ed's reporting of a Minnesota Bush event, I want G.W. to get back to SE Wisconsin soon so I can see him.
"Bush Ignites St. Paul, Norm Coleman Provides The Match"
Kerry's House of Ketchup #23
Last week, golf became a higher priority than politics. This edition of Kerry's House of Ketchup is short and sweet. I'm also highlighting some weblogs I've rarely or ever linked to help you broaden your blogospheric reading.
Join in the fun by linking to the House of Ketchup. If you have an MT-powered weblog, just trackback to this post, and it will appear below. If your weblog software is incapable of trackbacks use Kevin's Trackback Form.
The highs and lows for gymnast Paul Hamm were extreme. After his third event, the vault, his chances for claiming a men's all-around medal looked impossible. Hamm says he was tired, and that's why he fell down on his landing. But Hamm got back up and didn't quit. He impressed the judges with his parallel bars routine and made everyone's jaw drop with his high bar routine. In the end, Wisconsin native Paul Hamm rose from disaster to become the first men's all-around champion in American history.
Crack in Swiftvet's Story
Swiftvet, Larry Thurlow, claims Kerry's bronze star award was "totally fabricated" because his boat wasn't under fire when he was patrolling with Kerry on March 13, 1969. Thurlow's bronze star citation says otherwise. Thurlow's explanation is "It's like a Hollywood presentation here, which wasn't the case."
"Records Counter a Critic of Kerry"
August 18, 2004
I'm Sensing a Pattern
One Democratic U.S. Senator fibbing on his Vietnam service record is an anomaly. Two [and here] makes it awfully suspicious. Is there another Democrat with an inflated war record dumb enough to challenge the blogosphere?
PETA wants to use Ronald Reagan in an ad campaign to promote vegetarianism. That's the tasteless part. The dumb part is they're taking a web poll asking for others' opinions. Let's stuff the ballot to give PETA a clear signal that Reagan's image shouldn't be used for wacky Lefty causes. (Then go out and get a big, juicy steak.)
Read Kerry v. O'Neill
First Impressions: "Creamfields"
This is the first in what I hope will be an on-going series where I listen to an album for the first time and jot down my first impressions--hence the name. An album that doesn't have a great first impression shouldn't imply it's no good. Maybe at the time of my first listen I'm not in the mood for music genre (or in no good mood at all). It's possible for an album to "grow on a person--like mold." [Ten brownie points to the first person to tell me what sit-com that quote came from.] Conversely, an album that has a good first impression may not have the staying power of, say, Sugar's Copper Blue. Individuals evolve, and their tastes evolve with them. The first victim is Paul Oakenfold's new two-CD dance mix Creamfields.
The first disk is filled with hands-in-the-air trance that's full of melodies and hooks but isn't cheesy. Oakenfold's forte is picking excellent songs you can dance and hum along to. These songs send me to the version of the massive Creamfields festival running wild inside my head.
Disk 2 starts off with a more moderate pace and a break beats. "One Day" by NuBreed & Luke Chable sounds more like a electronicized pop song rather than an dance anthem. Things get revved up with Girl Nobody's "Cages" and continues on with The Sneaker's "Scatterbomb." Oakenfold gets back to the epic trance sound with Stel & Good Newz's "Particle" and his remix of U2's "Beautiful Day."
Creamfields is a solid dance collection. It contains melody, vocals, and plenty of irresistible, body-grooving rhythms.As long as Paul Oakenfold sticks to mix albums he's fine. It's when he does solo projects that we should cringe.
Daniel Pipes is pleased the President is inching his way to formally acknowledging the enemy we're at war with.
"Naming the Enemy"
August 17, 2004
The Olympic Spirit
If you're reading this you're probably not in Athens competing in the Olympics. If you feel bad about this don't fret. You can help John Kerry in the Flip Flop Olympics.
BloggerCon III (Return of the Weblogger?) will be 11.06 at Stanford Law School. Even though it could be a Lefty love fest should John Kerry win on Election Day (the techno-utopianism would be running wild) I'd love to go. I haven't been to California in almost 20 years and never to Northern California. Unfortunately the date is in the beginning of the Christmas shopping season, and my store needs all the able bodies at that time. Dave Winer and friends will have to find another token conservative for their gathering.
"BloggerCon III date -- Saturday, November 6, 2004"
Ever since a weird combination of Metallica and The Beatles started floating around the Net last year, all we knew about Beatallica was they were from the Midwest. I figured their home was Chicago given the Windy City's population and bigger music scene. Nope. Michael Brandenburg, A.K.A. Krk Hammettson, and his fellow four horsemen all call Milwaukee home.
"Meet the Milwaukeeans Who Meld Metallica, Beatles"
That Makes Two of Us
Stephen Green is "thorougly confused" about the whole John Kerry-David Alston link. So am I. If the two of us, both fairly intelligent and cogent enough to attract more than two readers, are confused imagine Joe Schmo who may only casually glance at the Kerry's possible imbelishments/lies about Vietnam while watching the Olympics. We're seeing lots of research being done in public in the blogosphere (start with Captain Ed), but no one has collected all the scattered bits and presented them in a way the public can understand. Until that happens this story will have little effect on the election.
August 16, 2004
NRO's Kerry Spot would be spot on as a great weblog, but there's no permalinks. Since it looks like a weblog and reads like a weblog, then they should go all the way. It's not like NRO doesn't know anything about weblogs.
Culture vs. Prosperity
A growing economy based on computers, electronics, and other gizmos needs energy. Gas, coal, nuclear, wind, solar, whatever, we need power or the machines will stop running, the cars will stop moving, and material improvement will grind to a halt. Oil prices have been high for months, long enough for serious alternatives to be considered. One is liquified natural gas (LNG) transported from overseas on large tanker ships. When the LNG arrives here it can immediately be put to use. It has to have its temperature raised so it can go into the natural gas pipeline network. Thus there is a need to build facilities to take in LNG.
The Passamaquoddy tribe in Maine will be voting tomorrow whether to turn over one-quarter of their reservation to a LNG facility. The Passamaquoddies are poor, and the facility will bring in 70 21st Century jobs (not all of them will go to tribe members) along with the halo of economic benefit that comes with them.
Critics inside the tribe worry that tradition will be lost. If continued poverty (half of the tribe is unemployed) and economic stagnation is tradition, then yes it will be lost to good jobs. It's wrong to assume the Passamaquoddy arrived in North America and stopped evolving culturally and socially over the centuries. I'm confident the tribesmen aren't living in huts and spending hours collecting and hunting for food like their ancestors did. So already some of their tradition has been lost.
As in all aspects of life, tradeoffs are required. The Passamaquoddy can drop the proposed LNG plant and try to find another way out of their poverty. Or they can embrace the economic benefits from the plant and use that gain to save the parts of the culture they feel are most important.
Just look at the rest of the world today. You will find that the richer a nation the more culture is created. This is because once individual needs are satisfied, people can use their surplus on culture--both high and low. Ironically, the best way for the Passamaquoddy to save their culture is to embrace the modern world.
"Maine Tribe Offers Home for Natural Gas Depot"
Kerry: Fullbright Scholar
In the running subplot of the election, Kerry Sisters vs. Bush Twins, Vanessa Kerry scored a major accomplishment.
UPDATE: Thankfully, Steven Taylor, a Fullbright Scholar himself, nips the "Vanessa doesn't deserve it because she has a rich family" quip in the bud. Let us also realize that even though Vanessa's stepmother is a billionaire she has no legal or moral claim on the Heinz fortune. We all have to take off the cynical, partisan glasses sometimes.
The NY Times' Dave Anderson has some interesting prognostication for Whistling Straits' future:
Look for the 2012 United States Open to be awarded to Whistling Straits by the United States Golf Association, which has already committed to holding its 2007 Senior Open here.
Eight years to wait for the U.S. Open. Oh, well. I plan on being there in 2007 for the Senior U.S. Open.
"'Dyeabolical' 18th Hole Earns Its Major Stripes"
UPDATE: Future major golf events aren't just the hot air from Herb Kohler. PGA chief executive Jim Awtrey said the PGA Championship will return and "someday there will be a Ryder Cup here."
"'No question' PGA Championship will return to Whistling Straits"
Kerry vs. O'Neill, Round 1
C-SPAN has only grown more impressive in my eyes. They've done a great public service by broadcasting the John Kerry/John O'Neill debate on The Dick Cavett Show in 1971.
Unlike the yap fests we're stuck with on cable news channels, this was a real, serious discussion on the Vietnam War. Both Kerry and O'Neill were articulate and passionate about their views. Kerry looked like graduate student making precise points on his anti-war stance. O'Neill, while not looking as intellectual as Kerry, countered with well-informed arguments of his own. There were only one or two moments when both men talked over each other. Crossfire, this wasn't.
Kerry's Vietnam stories during his post-Vietnam and Senate years were far different in texture than his Dick Cavett debate. Kerry was ripping off details about conditions in Vietnam and Laos as well as quotes from officers who fought there. He sounded like he knew his stuff. Today, we're suppose to believe that Kerry's fudge on where he was in Christmas is understandable since the events were so long ago. For a man who was so confident in the details of the facts he presented in his 1971 debate it's hard to accept that his mind has changed so much in 30+ years.
August 15, 2004
When it was all said and done Pete Dye was right.
Dye said he expects "somebody will shoot a 65 or 66" on the 7,514-yard layout that plays to a par 72. And the winning total? "With the weather that's forecast, 8- or 10-under par," he predicted.
Vijay Singh shot a final-round 4-over-76 yet made his only birdie in a three-way playoff to win his second PGA Championship.
The world's best golfer were tearing apart the beast in Thursday's opening round. The greens were soft and there was no wind. In today's round, conditions changed. The wind kicked up and the greens were fast from a lack of rain. Singh survived a tough round of golf and shined in the playoff.
Singh praised the Wisconsin fans:
But the fans were incredible. I thought they were very fair. I had fans from the very first day. I played with John Daly and Tiger the first day, and they were loaded there, too. I was used to the fans going to the last day, but I thought they were very fair. Very enthusiastic crowd out there, and they were cheering for everybody. It's nice to have fans like that when you play golf tournaments. They really appreciate good golfing.
Such a good response only helps the course's future. Herbert Kohler, CEO of Kohler Company which owns Whistling Straits, says he already has a verbal committment to host another PGA Championship and possibly a Ryder Cup.
"Timely Birdie Gives Singh Second PGA Title"
[Crossposted to SportsBlog.]
August 14, 2004
There was a Trump sighting at Whistling Straits today:
In past years, a Donald Trump sighting might have been big PGA news. At one point Saturday, The Donald planted himself at the crest of the hill that the golfers climb to leave the 9th and 18th green. Mickelson nearly pulled a neck muscle doing a double take as he walked by Trump.
"Final Round Should Have Plenty of Headlines"
No, I am Charlotte Simmons
Tom Wolfe's next book will come out 11.09.
[via Late Final]
It's About Time
The U.S. won the Cold War over ten years ago and finally serious military restructuring in Europe and Asia is taking place. Captain Ed writes that part of this is payback to Gerhard Schroeder. All I know is it took a terrorist attack on the U.S. and a new war to get this realignment. Crisis, not reason, can be the biggest catalyst for governmental change. That's why no serious reforms of Social Security or Medicare will happen until they're both completely bankrupt.
"U.S. to Pull 70,000 Troops from Europe, Asia"
Great Bush Ad
The Bush campaign has a new ad (click on "Victory"), and it's the best one I've seen from them yet. It's timely (Olympics), succinct (only one message), and powerful.
Expect the Democrats to yell that the ad's title is as accurate as the "Mission Accomplished" sign on the U.S.S. Lincoln.
August 13, 2004
And they're usually a lot less perfect if they're making political commercials. FactCheck.org points out the inaccuracies of a DNC ad.
"DNC Ad Says Bush Lost Manufacturing Jobs"
The Wall Street Journal editoral page cuts through Kerry Edwards', Ron Reagan's, and most of the media's rhetoric about a so-called "stem cell ban."
The issue is federal subsidies. The need for a Presidential decision arose from an appropriations rider passed by Congress in the mid-1990s forbidding federal funding for any research that creates, injures or destroys human embryos.
These scientists who see this "ban" as opposing science are either 1.) misinformed; 2.) in it for the (government) money; 3.) so aloof as to believe only scientists have any useful opinion about science; or 4.) partisan hacks doing their part to elect John Kerry.
"The (Political) Science of Stem Cells"
Upset with Kerry
Since any letters to the editor page is only representive of the host of letters received, John Kerry disappointed many of his supporters by saying he'd still would have voted for the Iraq War authorization. Here's one letter:
To the Editor:
It remains to be seen if this will tick off the anti-warriors and the Deaniacs. It could end that Kerry does worse on Election Day than the polls say because of a lot of voters who are anti-Bush don't bother to go to the polls.
August 12, 2004
Whistling Straits wasn't the beast everyone thought she would be. Darren Clarke shot a 65 to take the first round lead and 40+ others shot below par. Because of the PGA's alterations and the lack of strong winds the course might not even be the "toughest PGA Tour course in the Greater Milwaukee area."
All Hell Would Break Loose
Because I knew you were losing sleep over a possible Electoral College mess, here's some gory details of such a scenerio I wondered about.
Whistling in the Wind
Whistling Straits, the home of the 2004 PGA Championship is even more daunting and intimidating in person than on television. Watching a camera fly over holes surrounded by sand traps, inhospitable rough, and towering rises is one thing, but walking up and down, up and down, up and down will prove to scoffers that golf is truly an athletic sport.
Yesterday, was the last day of practice. It was the last chance to map out strategies, see how balls rolled across greens, and how the weather would affect play. Hopefully, the weather wasn't a precursor for the tournament. The wind was coming out of the northwest. It added to the chill already in the air. Players and spectators both had to cope with a day in the mid-50s with rain showers and a wind that drove the precipitation sideways. I got tired not just from walking, but from nasty weather.
Yet the weather didn't stop me from seeing some of golf's biggest names. On a practice green together were John Daly and Greg Norman. I followed Jim Furyk through six holes and watched Mike Weir chip on the massive 18th green. Nick Faldo hit the straightest drive off a tee I ever saw. It was a laser beam. David Duval and Justin Leonard both walked past me to get to the next tee.
The closest I came to anyone was Tiger Woods. I was headed to the practice area to see of the world's number one player was there. At the clubhouse stewards blocked off a path signaling a player was approaching. It was none other than Mr. Woods. His walk was business-like, focused. Just a brief smile and a slight wave to his fans was all he gave. Tiger was at work.
I'd love to tell you I took a bunch of pictures to dribble out to you over the next few days. Unfortunately, my digital camera broke after a few shots. So, any suggestions on a new one that uses SmartMedia would be appreciated.
I did take two interesting pictures before my bad luck.
I couldn't resist a picture of this odd sign. The "vans" happen to be Cadillac Escalades scattered all over the course.
Today is when swings count. I'll be there bright and early. So, once again, expect few posts until the evening.
For some insider info, the Journal Sentinel has a pretty good weblog covering the tournament.
August 11, 2004
An Appraisal of Keyes
Erick Erickson thinks "Keyes is good for conservatives because he is unashamed to be one. But, he will hurt the Republicans and the conservative movement in particular because he is unwilling to play the role he has assigned himself – that of a politician."
Keyes is an orator from a by-gone era. But that passion and directness will fall short with the voters. A comparison can be made with Reagan. The Gipper didn't fall back on tough moral positions, but he had a more human way of making his case. He used empathy over bombast.
And since you're already reading Erickson, here's a disturbing piece of truly hardball politics.
"Alan Keyes -- The Right Disaster"
Watching Some Golf
Don't expect any posts from me until tonight. I'm spending the day hiking around Whistling Straits watching golf's best practice. If I don't do something stupid like forget my camera, there will be pictures too.
"Whistling Straits is a Bear"
August 10, 2004
A Potential Mess
Here's Scott Elliott's latest "Election Projection." Kerry would win. However, if just one state, Florida, switched from Kerry to Bush (possible since Kerry leads by 3.12%) there would be a tie and the election would be thrown into the House of Representatives. Imagine the screaming from the Left if Kerry got won the popular vote but tied the Electoral vote only to lose in the House? It'd be four more years of further partisan acrimony.
Kerry's stand on stem cells isn't just morally wrong, but the science doesn't back him. Too bad many scientists are keeping their mouths shut hoping for lots of federal dollars (and the private dollars that will follow). These scientists claim to be "objective," "independent," and without ideology when, in fact, they promote an ideology of science trumping any human value in its way.
UPDATE: Joe Carter gives us some detail about the actual law on stem cell research.
Beldar fisks Jim Rassmann and noticed that Rassmann names the Swifties' group the "Swift Boat Veterans for Bush." Interesting that the error got past WSJ editors.
I didn't think such a point-by-point rebuttal was needed. Rassmann didn't really say much other than the Swifties are horrible because they used the same ad firm that attacked Sen. John McCain in 2000. Like I wrote in the post below this feels like something written (or heavily influenced) by Kerry Edwards people.
"Fisking Rassman's WSJ Op-Ed"
The Small Biz President
If Bill Hobbs had his way, President Bush would be touting how many jobs were created according to the household survey. Hobbs then notes that according to that survey small business does better under Republican administrations. Therefore, it's no surprise one of the poles of the GOP's big tent is small businessmen.
"Republicanomics Helps Small Business"
Kevin Donahue hosts a disturbing Bonfire of the Vanities.
Toast is great in the morning. So here's Steven Taylor's latest Toast-O-Meter.
Vet Responds to Swiftvets
Jim Rassman has an op-ed in the today's Wall Street Journal calling the Swiftvets' charges "false" and "fabricated."
I'm sure Rassman deeply stands behind these words and his defense of John Kerry is honest. However, the piece feels like it was written by a Kerry Edwards spokesman. None of the Swiftvets' charges are addressed. Rassman's strongest argument that the accusations are false is that Sen. John McCain said they were--and he was farther away from any of the events than anyone.
"Shame on the Swift Boat Veterans for Bush"
Keyes Comes Out Swinging
The Illinois Senate race is already fun to watch. Alan Keyes came out swinging by calling Barack Obama's abortion stance is the "slaveholder's position." No white candidate would be able to say that.
In other news, Obama said there will be debates, but not the seven he promised ex-GOP candidate Jack Ryan. I'm not surprised. Keyes isn't going to win, and I'm sure he knows it. Keyes wants as many debates as possible to force Obama to take stands that may hurt him politically in the future. If Obama's future is bright this campaign be what opponents dig through to find a flaw.
"Keyes: Obama Holds 'Slaveholder's' View"
Sen. Russ Feingold made no sense when he defended Kerry Edwards on their Iraq votes. From "Wisconsin's Progressive Newspaper," The Capital Times:
U.S. Sen. Russ Feingold says the Democratic nominees for president and vice president, Sens. John Kerry and John Edwards, "got the order of the votes wrong" by voting to authorize the war in Iraq and then voting against the $87 billion to fund it.
Feingold must be talking about the procedural votes such as the ones where Kerry actually said he voted for the $87 billion dollar bill before he voted against it. What "other votes" could he be talking about?
Feingold then praised Kerry Edwards for running a campaign that "has had a mature, dignified approach that shows you they will be mature, dignified leaders." Russ must have seemed to forgotten Teresa's tantrums.
Then, like Kerry Edwards, Feingold proves he doesn't have a serious alternative to President Bush's plans in Iraq. Feingold told The Capital Times editorial board:
The first choice is to turn over the operation to troops from Islamic countries, and the second choice is (to bring in) troops from other countries.
What countries? Who has agreed to go into Iraq if the U.S. pulled out? Has Feingold been having meetings with foreign leaders like Kerry has claimed? You would think at least one of the editors would have asked Feingold that question, but being the state's "progressive paper" holding the state's progressive standard bearer would be expecting too much.
[Imagine how other media would treat an organization claiming to be "Wisconsin's Conservative Newspaper."]
The article goes into a little about Feingold's re-election race. He doesn't think the attacks by four GOP challengers are working and promised to never go negative. However, Feingold wasn't very positive when he said President Bush "doesn't come off as particularly capable" on running the Iraq War.
"Feingold: Dems' Vote on Iraq War Out of Order"
August 09, 2004
By the Sweat of Alan's Brow
I'm a fan of Alan Keyes (just not enough to back him for President in 2000), but he's going to get creamed by Obama. So, a sweat-soaked napkin of his has no appeal to me.
[via Jeff Quinton]
Kerry Edwards on Stem Cells
Today, Sen. John Edwards said it was "a sad day" because it was the anniversary of President Bush's decision to limit federal funding on embryonic stem cells. Edwards said the decision "put restrictions in place that dramatically undermine our efforts to find cures for diseases." Maybe, maybe not. But one way for sure to find cures for disease is for science to begin unlimited, coerced human testing. If doctors and scientists had free reign to do any studies on any type of human being I'm pretty confident extraordinary cures would be discovered. We don't allow that to happen in the U.S. because we believe the ends don't justify the means. Turning people into medical slaves to benefit the rest of humanity doesn't outweigh violating basic human rights.
To those of us who believe human life begins at conception, embryonic stem cell research that kills the embryo is akin to coerced medical study. This debate isn't about one side opposing research that might cure disease and the other side championing medical miracles.
And sorry Glenn, but John Kerry isn't right. In America we don't sacrifice some for the common good.
"First Lady Bashes Kerry Stem Cell Stance"
Happy Birthday Blogcritics
Congratulations, Eric and all my fellow Blogcritics.
"Blogcritics Second Anniversary"
Speak Against Gays; Go to Jail
There a lot of fear among the U.S. Left about the stifling of descent. At least they don't live in Sweden. A minister there went to jail for preaching against homosexuality. Now, will the Left join the U.K.'s Libertarian Alliance in denouncing the land of Volvos, gorgeous blonds, and politically correct speech?
"'No Place for Faschist in European Union: Suspend Sweden Now,' Says Free Market and Civil Liberties Think Tank"
Kerry the Veteran
Two comments I heard/read on Kerry the Vietnam War veteran.
First, on C-SPAN this evening, Ben Stein made a great point about John Kerry. He became famous, not for winning the silver star, but for trashing his fellow soldiers when he came back home.
Second, David Carr comments on the irony of Kerry preening as a war hero in front of the hard-core Democrats:
Stange is it not? The very same people who would have been spitting at John Kerry and calling him a "fascist baby-killer" in the 1960's are the same ones who are now getting all misty-eyed and choked up over his Vietnam war record.
"He Only Killed Grown-Ups"
August 08, 2004
Christmas in Cambodia
Thanks to super-sluth Glenn Reynolds we know John Kerry claims he was in Cambodia in 1968. [What, he only needs a key to get into the library? I guess the University of Tennessee doesn't believe in security alarms.] The Swiftvets claim otherwise. Kerry Edwards and their supporters will have to do a lot more than ad hominem attacks to get him off the hook. They can't just send out a bunch of lawyers. They're going to have to actually address the Swiftvets' claims.
There are other, more damning parts of Kerry's past. What I think has not been talked about enough are the war crimes claims he made when he returned from Vietnam. Kerry has said he may have made some exaggerations, but he's not renounced the Winter Soldier lies he perpetuated. Then there's his being on the wrong side of the Contra-Sandinista war in Nicaragua. How about his advocacy of a "nuclear freeze?" Even more importantly are all those votes to kill a host of weapons. There are a lot of questions John Kerry has to answer.
UPDATE: John Cole lays out a lot of context to better weigh the Swiftvets' claims and Kerry Edwards' counter-claims.
Difference of Opinion
Here we have two smart webloggers who would both be considered pro-Bush or Bush-leaning. Bill Hobbs liked the recent employment numbers, but based on the same information Megan McArdle wrote, "I think we in the media should start practicing saying 'President Kerry.'"
Three Ringy Dingies
Alan Keyes will make the Illinois Senate race fun to watch, but he's going to get crushed. I bring this up because Michael Van Winkle is running the Obama Truth Squad to ask the "questions Illinois media won't."
To the Air
Last night, 60,000+ Packers fans filled Lambeau Field to watch a scrimmage. Yup, a scrimmage. Only in Wisconsin.
As for the play, iffy defense (missing starting cornerback Mike Mackenzie) may have persuaded Mike Sherman and Brett Farve to capture the spirit of the "Mad Bomber" Daryle Lamonica.
It's a lousy time for the Brewers to be in a funk. Not that there's really a good time.
"Offensive Changes Have Come to Pass"
August 07, 2004
It Got Ugly in Missouri
Professor Bainbridge found another uncivil clash between Bush and Kerry supporters. Add this to the one in Milwaukee. It's sad to say, but it's only going to get worse. It might benefit Kerry and Bush to make a public statement demanding decent behavior from their supporters.
Advisors Disagree with Kerry
The Kerry Edwards energy plan calls for "energy independence." One of John Kerry's best received stump speech zingers targets the Saudis. However, even campaign advisors think the promises are "irresponsible, asinine." Even if Kerry Edwards could somehow keep the U.S. economy chugging without a drop of Middle East oil, we'd still feel the effects of any regional instability there. NY Times reporter, Neela Banerjee explains:
The problem is that for the next 10 or 20 years, perhaps more, perhaps as long as the United States uses oil, it will be tied to the Middle East, which holds two-thirds of the world's oil reserves. Oil prices are global, determined by bidding for barrels mainly on exchange in New York and London. So even if the United States did not import any oil from the Middle East, a disruption of oil exports from there to Japan, for instance, would still result in a price shock in the United States as Japan's scramble for oil drive up prices everywhere, industry experts said.
Also, such Saudi bashing may not serve a Kerry administration's diplmatic efforts. Many in the Saudi government see Kerry's brash remarks as "what you find on a bumper sticker," but it could be used anti-U.S. groups in the Persian Gulf nation.
"Kerry's Goal of Independence From Middle East Oil Divides Advisers"
A New Name
President Bush is getting closer, but I guess calling our current struggle the Islamist War would be too uncomfortable for his "compassionate conservatism."
"Bush Renames War?"
August 06, 2004
A Possible Explanation
The source of Bush hatred may be the "images of the president as a young adult."
We're Stuck with Him
The lovely Michelle Malkin got nixed from a "colorful" journalism conference by one O. Ricardo Pimentel. I recognized that name because I'm stuck with him as the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's new editorial page editor. Oh, lucky me.
August 05, 2004
For Future Reference
My eyes popped open, and the first word to come out of my mouth was, "Wow," when I read this brief on Gary North's newest book. Here's what shocked me:
The book’s thesis is, even for me, controversial. I provide 400+ pages of evidence that the Constitutional Convention of 1787 was in fact an illegal coup d’état. The participants knew this. This is why they took a lifetime oath of secrecy, walked upstairs to the second floor of the State House (so that eavesdroppers could not report what was going on), closed the doors, and hammered out the design for a replacement government. Newspaper reporters were excluded.
I'm granting that North has much more knowledge of that time period than I. However, I know one thing that harms his thesis: the states had to ratify the new constitution. If it was a coup, it was the most democratic coup in world history. Since I've dealt with these paleos before, I expect North's defenders to enlighten me on how I'm wrong.
"Conspiracy in Philadelphia"
Thomas Sowell discusses a range of topics from race to Marxism to rebuilding Iraq.
Get Better Handlers
When John Kerry was in Milwaukee, Monday, he skipped the BBQ and frozen custard joints he told his audience he couldn't miss or "I'm in trouble." Instead, he went to Pieces of Eight. Yes, Jim Stingl is correct that the resturant is "a bit more upscale" than a rib place or custard shop, but it shows Kerry's handlers have no taste. Pieces of Eight may have an upscale price, but it's not a popular place to eat even though it's right on Lake Michigan.
To Kerry's handlers here's the list of the top 30 resturants in the Milwaukee area. There we're sure to find a place for John and Teresa to go the next time they stop in the Brew City. One of the places probably serves chili.
Sen. Kerry attacked President Bush for not moving fast enough when he received word that the World Trade Center was being attacked. Bush waited a few minutes until a teacher finished reading a story to group of children. An immediate exit would have saved zero lives and may have frightened the kids. Serious and reasonable people know this, but not the Bush bashers.
Kerry said, "I would have told those kids very politely and nicely that the president of the United States had something that he needed to attend to, and I would have attended to it." Would a President Kerry have rushed to a window, tore open his shirt like Superman and flew out of it to battle al-Qaeda? Or would President Kerry have quickly found a phone and began micromanaging the rescue efforts in New York City and Washington? Maybe he would have used some of those "secret plans" he's talked about.
If this is the best he can do to sound tougher on the war than Bush, then the President should just stop campaigning and take another long Crawford vacation because the race is over.
"Kerry Raps Bush on Initial 9/11 Inaction"
Everyone Has One
From The Onion: "CIA Asks Bush to Discontinue Blog."
[via Daniel Drezner]
Blasting the Boss
Russell Roberts did a better job than I could responding to Bruce Springsteen's NY Times op-ed. All I will add is that when you take Springsteen's Vote for Change tour (more accurately the Anti-Bush Tour) add in the Soros-financed 527s and the Democratic Party it makes President Bush's record-breaking fundraising look small. Bush will need all the help we can give him so I'm asking you to donate as much as you can.
"Inequality and the Boss"
Here's quite the Bush blunder when speaking on the defense bill today:
Third, this bill meets our commitment to America's Armed Forces by preparing them to meet the threats of tomorrow. Our enemies are innovative and resourceful, and so are we. They never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we. We must never stop thinking about how best to defend our country when we all must always be forward-thinking.
CNN's Inside Politics did a whole story on slip of the tongue, and I'm sure Bush bashers will find some creative ways to glorify it.
After reading this a few times I think it may have been a mistake in the written text. The sentence before the goofy one has the same structure. But since Bush has had a history of being a malaprop that shouldn't be assumed.
I sympathize with the man, because I mess up my words all the time. There have even been times where I was thinking one thing and said something completely different. Then I wonder why people are looking at me strangely. I guess Bush's and my brains are connected so well to our mouths.
[via The WOW Report]
The Wall Street Journal's Peggy Noonan announces today that she is stepping aside to volunteer her time in the next few months to ensure President Bush is re-elected.
I am going to take three months' unpaid leave from The Wall Street Journal and attempt to support the Republican Party in the coming and crucial election. (Every four years everyone says "this is the most important election of my lifetime," but this year I believe it is true.) I'm going to give whatever advice and encouragement I have in terms of strategy, approach, message--I hate that word--and issues. No one has asked me to do this, and I do it as a volunteer, not for a salary but simply to give my time to help what I think is the more helpful side. This will take a bite out of my finances but I can do it. Actually most of us, when we die, wind up with a few thousand dollars in the bank. We should have spent it! I am going to spend mine now.
Ms. Noonan is quite articulate, and I look forward to see what discourse develops as she enters the campaign.
Kerry's House of Ketchup #22
Welcome to the bounce-less edition of Kerry's House of Ketchup. The "Duel in Davenport" never materialized, but Kerry did end up looking corny. That's good that nothing happened because the "Maurauding in Milwaukee" made Bush supporters look like twits, Kerry backers like thugs, and Teresa like that hysterical woman on Airplane.
Some Washington Post reporters watched Kerry's acceptance speech with undecided voters. Here's how the reporters put the reaction: "When it ended, they all said they liked what they saw and now will consider him seriously as a candidate -- although none said he closed the deal." Boston Globe columnist Thomas Oliphant wrote, "Kerry essentially blew an opportunity."
Since Kerry officially has the nomination, he can only use the $75 million of public funds to run his campaign. President Bush can continue to spend from his massive war chest until he accepts public funds in September. But don't feel sorry for Kerry. The Democratic Party will be spending millions for Kerry, and then there are those Soros-funded 527s. Plus there's that Bush-bashing concert tour.
Reuters found some Republicans who will be voting for Kerry. When will they run a story on Democrats (other than Zell Miller) backing Bush?
As for the economic benefits of the DNC convention in Boston: there weren't any. In other economic news, the Bush recession (which actually started under Clinton) may not have been a recession in the first place.
In an interview the day after accepting the nomination, John Kerry said he preferred that a captured Osama bin Laden be tired in an American court. Me, I prefer he not make it out of his cave alive. He also reiterated his belief that human life begins at conception but doesn't have the gumption to turn that into pro-life policy.
When it comes to the polls one things for sure. Kerry got a very weak bounce out of the convention. Looking at KHoK's favorite measuring stick, the Iowa Electronic Markets, Bush's lead over Kerry has increased since the convention in both markets. [For further discussion on how good these prediction markets can be, read B. K. Marcus' essay.]
Behold! The links:
Join in the fun by linking to the House of Ketchup. If you have an MT-powered weblog, just trackback to this post, and it will appear below. If your weblog software is incapable of trackbacks use Kevin's Trackback Form.
August 04, 2004
A Psychadelic Experience
Seldom Sober hosts this week's Carnival of the Vanities.
I tell you, I absolutely love that woman.
Then there's my favorites,
It is so incredibly refreshing to have a smooth, balanced and thoughtful person -- that says what we are ALL thinking.
Oh, I wish I could make this stuff up.
August 03, 2004
This Has Potential
Christopher Buckley's new book, Florence of Arabia, is set in the Middle East. Even with the not-so-funny setting, this could be a laugh-out-loud hit since he offers this quip in an interview with The Atlantic Online:
Anyway, I was very happy with the camel blowing up. It's not every day that you get to blow up a camel and blame it on the French!
It Got Ugly in Milwaukee
Oh, to have been in downtown Milwaukee at the Kerry rally last night. I'm sure the Journal Sentinel's coverage didn't do it justice. During the rally, Bush supporters used a bullhorn and air horns to disrupt things. Tom Lange, a jerk who let his name get into the paper, fully admitted to wanting to drown out Kerry. He also told the reporter, "probably not nice, but it's my beliefs."
The Kerry side wasn't better:
There were several incidents of scuffling between Kerry and Bush supporters during the rally, including one in which it appeared a Kerry supporter attempted to throw a large Bush-Cheney sign into the Milwaukee River. Police and sheriff's deputies on foot and on horseback moved into the crowd several times and ordered people to move on and to break up their confrontations. No arrests were made, although one man was pinned to the ground by a sheriff's deputy at one point.
Then we have another Teresa moment. The Bush backers were chanting, "Four more years!" Teresa replied, "They want four more years of hell."
But wait! There's more...
In her remarks she questioned Bush's brainpower:
It is important to have a president who not only understands, but enjoys complexity.
She not only insulted the President but all his supporters. While I know of no election where a candidate was done in because of what his spouse said on the campaign trail, there's always a first time.
The Kerrys appear to be desparate after the dinky bounce from last week's Democratic convention. Kerry droned on about all the problems that Bush failed to fix, then told his audience that "Everything is at stake." Then there's Teresa's "four more years of hell" statement. I'll admit times have been tough for some and hellish for an unfortunate few, but the Kerry's made it sound like the Great Depression was Disneyworld compared to Bush's term in office.
"'Everything is at Stake,' Kerry Tells Riverfront Crowd"
UPDATE: Tomorrow, the two candidates will be holding rallies only a few blocks from each other in Davenport. I hope it doesn't get ugly there.
UPDATE II: Hindrocket at Power Line calls the Kerrys' remarks "hysteria."
UPDATE III: Milwaukee radio yapper Charlie Sykes has some examples of Kerry's "civility."
Rock Stars Against Bush
It's bad enough that most major newspapers, news channels, and magazines are filled with those who want President Bush to lose. Now, we find out some of the biggest names in pop music will be performing in battleground states in support of John Kerry. Anyone who didn't think this was a culture war before should think so now or get their head examined.
P.S. With all this media opposed to Republicans and conservatives the Left still has the audacity to complain about Rush Limbaugh, Fox News, and the Washington Times.
"Springsteen, R.E.M. to Rock for Political Change"
Keyes vs. Obama?
Alan Keyes might throw in his hat against Barack Obama. He'd be one heck of a long shot, but the debates would be absolutely riveting.
"Alan Keyes to take on Barack Obama?"
The Wayback Machine
Let's go back in time one week to Ron Reagan's "non-political" stem cell speech. John Cole refuted some of the myths surrounding this issue.
Let me make this clear. I'm not opposed to stem cell research per se. I oppose the killing of unborn children to get embryonic stem cells. It's bad enough that over 40 million children have been killed because of a mother's awful "choice," but it will be even worse to turn unborn human beings to stem cells farms for the rest of us.
"Just Out of Curiosity"
What if I (and a few other webloggers) all went to high school in 1965? The Commissar "dug" up a yearbook to reminisce.
"Blogville 1965 High School Yearbook"
August 02, 2004
Pass Me the Money
This week's Carnival of the Capitalists is at the Business Evolutionist.
Pass Me the Butter
Steven Taylor has a post-DNC Toast-O-Meter for you.
A Tale of Two Movies
When one goes to a movie they expect to be entertained or emotionally moved. A movie like Napoleon Dynamite is full of ironic even post-modern teen comedy cracks yet possess a level of intelligence missing from the failed "critically acclaimed" The Manchurian Candidate.
Napoleon Dynamite is about an Idaho high school student who's appearance and demeanor best visualize the Platonic ideal of geek more than any other movie I've ever seen. He's socially awkward, wears big goofy eyeglasses, and walks around in moon boots.
Despite being the most extreme dork in movie history he's more comfortable in his own skin than any other character in the movie. His older brother spends his days plugged into chatrooms yapping with his cyber-girlfriend. When she comes to Idaho to visit she transforms him into Eminem. Napoleon's uncle Rico can't get his mind away from high school football memories. Even Napoleon's grandmother tries to recapture her youth by motoring around sand dunes. Napoleon just chugs along asking a popular girl to the dance and helping his friend Pedro run for student body president. He doesn't try to live up to the expectations of others or relive a past that didn't exist. He's simply a good friend. In Napoleon Dynamite we have a movie that is touching, but not sentimental. Plus, it's incredibly funny.
The Manchurian Candidate had multiple purposes. One was to be an entertaining psychological thriller. Another was to make a political point: global corporations that profit on war are the greatest threat to the world today. It failed at both.
The general plot should be great for a movie: a candidate for Vice President is brainwashed by bad guys. The original had the candidate under the control of Communists. The new version has him under the control of a corporation with ties to government leaders across the globe. The psychological element comes in when Denzel Washington's character, also brainwashed, deals with the effects of the mental procedure. A couple of times director Jonathan Demme creates a surreal scene when dream collides with reality, but they're too sporadic. Only the great acting by Washington makes you believe that his character is losing his grip with reality. Washington's work makes up for Meryl Streep's over-the-top Hillary Clinton on steroids performance.
Then there's the whole ridiculous convoluted plot. For a few hours the audience is to believe a corporation has the power, ability, and to kidnap a U.S. army patrol in a war zone, brainwash them, then let them go all to get their man into the White House. Let's suppose Manchurian Global could do all this. Wouldn't it be easier to brainwash the current President rather than go through an elaborate plan that would take 13 years to complete? The problem with any conspiracy is the potential of someone talking. Thus the Shriners and Free Masons aren't behind the scenes controlling the world.
Which brings us to the political element of the movie. Demme actually believes war-profiting corporations are more of a threat than Islamist terrorists. I wonder if he believes Halliburton or the Carlyle Group were the ones actually behind the Sep. 11 attacks? He can disagree with President Bush all he wants on how to fight the Islamist War, but it seems he would rather focus smart bombs at Wall Street than on terrorist camps. Such misguidedness blatantly plastered all over a movie makes not just bad entertainment, but could get us killed.
August 01, 2004
How Many Can She Fit Into 750 Words?
Here we have typical Maureen Dowd. Since she's so fixated with metaphors here's one: she's like cotton candy. Reading her can be sweet, but there's so much air that nothing's left after her words melt away. I just want to know if Dowd took her Gilligan's Island line from the blogosphere.
"Can He Float Your Boat?"