Monday, June 30, 2008

PERSONALLY I AGREE WITH WESLEY CLARK. GETTING SHOT DOWN IN A MILITARY PLANE WON'T GET YOU INTO THE JOINT CHIEFS

"Throughout my life, I have always taken my deep and abiding love for this country as a given. It was how I was raised; it is what propelled me into public service; it is why I am running for President. And yet, at certain times over the last sixteen months, I have found, for the first time, my patriotism challenged – at times as a result of my own carelessness, more often as a result of the desire by some to score political points and raise fears about who I am and what I stand for. So let me say at this at outset of my remarks. I will never question the patriotism of others in this campaign. And I will not stand idly by when I hear others question mine."
Barack Obama, speaking today in Independence, Missouri on patriotism

FUTURES MARKETS HAVE LEFT US WITH LITTLE

When one looks objectively at the price of petroleum these days, once you get past the exorbitant taxes levied by governments, one has no choice but to look to the oil futures commodities traders as the culprits for our current situation. Let's put these traders in perspective, these are not huge petrochemical firms, or refineries. It is estimated that of these traders, only 1 to 4% of them actually has the capacity, or capability to take delivery of the product. They are paper pushers hell bent on capitalizing on our addiction, which can garner the wise investor untold millions in profits.
While oil has gained more than 40 percent this year, more and more people now shift their focus onto the role of speculators in the price hike. But is it all because of speculation?

Many believe so. A report the U.S. Congress released Monday showed that, in January 2000, 37 percent of the NYMEX crude futures contracts were held by speculative traders; but in April 2008, the number has soared to 71 percent. Meanwhile, the proportion of contracts held by commercial traders greatly declined.

The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Committee (CFTC) revealed in May that it began investigating potential price manipulations in the oil trading market in December 2007. The early findings show that since the sub-prime mortgage crisis large amount of speculation fund has turned to buy commodities like crude as a hedge against inflation. Speculation theory was also echoed by the Wall Street. Hedge fund manager Michael Master testified on May 20 that his pals in the Wall Street are pushing up world oil prices through speculative investment in futures market. Moreover, he pointed out at the hearing held by CFTC acting Chairman Walter Lukken on Monday that with greater regulation oil prices could drop to the level of 60 dollars a barrel within about 30 days.

Three days later, just after the oil prices surpassed 140 dollars point, the U.S. Congress approved a bill with a 402:19 vote that directs the CFTC to use its authority to curb speculation in the energy futures market.

But, is this the only factor in the sky rocketing price of unrefined crude? No. The market is simply operating on an assumption, and in the hopes, quite frankly that supply will never be able to satisfy the deepening demand, especially in light of the increased usage by China, India and many emerging nations in the world. Based on a Department of Energy report, the global demand for energy in 2030 will increase by 50 percent compared with the level in 2005.

Based on most estimates, the global safety cushion -- the amount of readily available oil that could be pumped in a moment of crisis-- is now less than two million barrels a day, a big slump from five million barrels a day in 2002. And nearly all of the safety cushion is in one country, Saudi Arabia, which makes the world even more vulnerable to political or other shocks. Nigeria, for example, is producing one million barrels a day less than its production capacity because of disruptions caused by attacks in the oil-rich Niger Delta. Production has stagnated in countries like Russia and Venezuela and is even plunging in places like Mexico. All these factors have left the global oil industry with little capacity to boost supplies, and the United States can do little if anything, to control it.

Senator Chuck Schumer, in an interview, said he could see no easy answers to high oil prices. “Everyone would like to believe that there is a silver bullet — like a bubble or speculation — that can solve our oil problem,” he said. Instead, he said, it would be better for the nation to focus on conserving energy and reducing its oil consumption. Which is government speak for "we're screwed."

Sunday, June 29, 2008

EXPENSIVE POWER LUNCHES

LUNCH WITH BUFFETT:
$2.1 MILLION
Chinese investment fund manager pays $2.1M for chance to dine with billionaire Warren Buffett, his annual philanthropic gift (through an Ebay auction) to the Glide organization, which goes to fight poverty in the San Francisco area. This may sound expensive, until you think of the absolute bargain Barack Obama got on Friday.....
CAMPAIGN STOP WITH CLINTON: $10-12 MILLION
(in campaign debts) Lunch not included.

OBAMA "SLAM DUNK" COULD BE AN "AIR BALL" IF NOT CAREFUL

"The current bundle of economic troubles should doom any Republican hoping to succeed George Bush," says NBC's Chris Matthews. "It's almost impossible to believe that another Republican could get elected," insists Katty Kay, the BBC's Washington-based correspondent.
Given the national climate for the previous 7+ years, is a Democrat, any Democrat, a "slam dunk" to get into the White House this year? Not so fast. Yes, the polling data looks very strong. Obama Leads McCain by double digits for the nation, and is picking up strong support in the swing, or so called "purple states," so called because they could go red, or blue. And, a recent survey of Republicans indicate only a 53% job approval for the present administration. Clearly, Obama has a leg up on McCain, especially in the area of financing, which will allow Barack to campaign in all 50 states, and in effect determine where the Republican candidate should, and must spend his limited funding, even in formerly slam dunk Republican strongholds.
However, in order for the Obama campaign to be able to keep its change manifesto, it desperately needs to make the case that the election of the Senator from Arizona is merely a reaffirmation of the Bush administration; in effect, a vote for McCain would be a vote to re-elect the President. This may prove problematic as McCain back peddles his way towards the center, and emphasizes his reputation as a political "maverick."
Does Obama move to the center, as many are predicting, or does he stay who he is? He is no longer the fresh face of the Democratic party. His face has been plastered over the airways for well over a year now, and the American people are beginning to see him as just another politician, rather than the messiah like movement he represented in the primaries.
His record is very clear. He is untested in foreign policy. His record in office clearly leans left, with the nonpartisan National Journal rating him the most liberal U.S. senator. When asked this month by ABC News when he had ever broken with liberal orthodoxy and taken risks with his base – as Bill Clinton did on trade, culture and welfare – Mr. Obama had little to say. At a meeting of Obama voters this week, some bemoaned the fact that many of their friends backed him solely because of his cool "name brand" and vague message of change. Obviously as he nears the finish line, his vagueness, however ill-conceived will not bode well for him. He must carve out platforms out the fresh face persona that once defined him. The primaries are much different, in a primary, the voters will accept the cotton candy approach, but in the election of a President, they expect something more solidified. They want granite.
In the primaries, Obama simply had to mirror the stands and positions of Hillary Clinton, and all things being equal, would you rather vote for an honest breathe of fresh air, or the queen bitch of American politics who is capable of anything? To be elected President, Obama will have to dive into the issues, and this is just the opening McCain needs.
In the Democratic primaries, Mr. Obama's ideas were rarely challenged. In the fall, they will be. "This election is remarkably fluid with two non incumbents running," says pollster Scott Rasmussen. "Some 30% of voters say they could easily change their minds, and a third of independent voters aren't paying much attention yet."
And on many of the core issues, the country continues to lean right of center. In last weeks Washington Post polling, 50% of voters favored a small government with fewer services while 45% wanted a bigger government with more services, much the same as they did in June of 2004.
As our economy continues to be sluggish, how much tolerance will the American voter show towards the numerous social spending promises Obama, and the left are suggesting. Basic mathematics will show he is proposing far more expenditures than the simple ending of the Bush tax cuts could ever manage to pay for. And given the current crisis at the tax pump, will the centrists, not to mention the liberal base, continue their ecological philosophies, or will they say the hell with John Muir, and authorize the creation of the 45 nuclear plants and numerous off shore drilling rigs McCain is advocating, a seemingly small price to pay if it allows them to continue to drive their Hummers and SUV's.
No, this is far from over. Given huge double digit leads approaching the general election, the Democrats have shown the propensity to grasp defeat from the jaws of victory. And history certainly bares this out, given that in recent memory, the only liberal Presidents have been a one term Jimmy Carter, and a two term Bill Clinton. John Kerry and Michael Dukakis are very recent examples of campaign derailing. The key for Obama, it seems to me is to stay true to his beliefs, and keep the Democratic strategists at arms length.
And that is "The World......According to Kimba." Thanks for reading.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

MC CAIN ON ENERGY: IS IT A LEXINGTON PLAN, OR MORE OF HIS LEXICON?

John McCain, in a speech on Wednesday (he doesn't work weekends), launched his so-called Lexington Project—"named for the town where Americans asserted their independence once before." "Let it begin today with this commitment: In a world of hostile and unstable suppliers of oil, this nation will achieve strategic independence by 2025," he said. What does "strategic independence" mean? It's not quite clear. But the phrase sounds pretty good, and rather more inspiring than Obama's narrower proposal to "reduce our dependence on foreign oil and reduce oil consumption overall by at least 35 percent, or 10 million barrels, by 2030," or to "reduce the energy intensity of our economy by 50 percent" by the same year.
McCain's new plan largely consists of 4 salient points; lift the ban on offshore drilling and let each state determine whether or not to drill, the building of 45 new nuclear plants by 2030, a $5,000.00 tax credit to anyone willing to purchase a zero-emission automobile, and a $300 million award to the developer of a new fuel cell automobile battery which is viable for mass American consumer usage. McCain said the new automobile battery should have "the size, capacity, cost and power to leapfrog the commercially available plug-in hybrids or electric cars."
McCain's remarks came a day after his Democratic rival, Sen. Barack Obama, called for greater oversight for energy traders. Obama's campaign said many economists believe speculation could be adding between $20 and $50 to the price of a barrel of oil; the price per barrel closed near $135 on Friday.
Barack Obama has slammed the so called "Lexington" McCain plan in the following ways...."What Washington has done is what Washington always does: It's peddled false promises, irresponsible policy and cheap gimmicks that might get politicians through the next election but won't lead America toward the next generation of renewable energy." "For decades, John McCain has been a part of this failure in Washington."
Obama commended McCain for speaking out on climate change but said that "time and time again, he has opposed investing in the alternative sources of energy that have helped fuel some of the very same projects and businesses that he's now highlighting in this campaign." When John F. Kennedy decided that we were going to put a man on the moon, he didn't put a bounty out for some rocket scientist to win -- he put the full resources of the United States government behind the project and called on the ingenuity and innovation of the American people -- not just in the private sector but also in the public sector."
Obama said his energy plan would include taxing profits from oil companies and using that money to help families pay their energy bills. He also said he would "close the loophole that allows corporations like Enron to engage in unregulated speculation that ends up artificially driving up the price of oil."
Obama said he would raise the fuel standards and invest $150 billion over the next 10 years in alternate sources of energy. "My entire energy plan will produce three times the oil savings that John McCain's ever could -- and what's more, it will actually decrease our dependence on oil while his will only grow our addiction further," he said

Friday, June 27, 2008

THE HIGH PRICE OF A LITTLE "UNITY"

Barack Obama, hedging all of his bets joined his former nemesis, Hillary Clinton, in of all places, Unity, New Hampshire for a joint campaign stop. While one must flinch at the thought of the town's name where they began their joint campaigning effort, the choice was more than symbolism, as each candidate garnered exactly 107 votes apiece there during the primaries. The speeches, for the most part where the usual assortment of stale stump speech fodder and rehashed promises, although each did bend over backwards to ingratiate themselves to each other, and the voting populous each represents. Obama went so far as to suggest that the Clinton's (yes, both of them) hold a ton of wit and wisdom to impart to his campaign, and even agreed with one man in the audience, who at one point during his speech, screamed out "Hillary rocks."Although it is perfectly understandable to request the aid of the most powerful woman in Washington for help with her 18 million supporters, it is not understood how much (or how little), Barack actually wants to associate with Bill Clinton, he of the massive baggage reputation. Surely, campaigning with him will unleash an avalanche of controversy as the GOP slowly picks away at the affairs (no pun intended) of President Clinton, since he has been out of office. Not the least of these issues would be how he made so much money in such a short period of time. second will be his somewhat unfortunate choice in billionaire playmates as he has gone cross crossing the globe. One report, as noted by the husband of Dee Dee Myers (she of former Clinton press secretary fame), who noted that he has been traveling on a plane of a billionaire friend, who has been known to call his plane, "Air Fuck One," both for its frequent passenger, as well as the questionable goings on inside, not the least of which is a penchant for the company of young girls.
No, I think the party power players are having him talk the talk, but will definitely not walk the walk when it comes to Bill, and to a certain extent, Hillary. No matter what he says, he always makes room for a "redefinition" of his views, such as his consistently malleable positions on talking to enemy dictators, public financing and NAFTA. So lets be cautious of any invitations the Clinton's may have received to come over and help out at the Obama party. All indications that they are being sought out for their knowledge and support may just be Obama giving them, and the 18 million Clinton supporters his version of the "okee-doke." Just like the Obama campaign contributions Hillary received from the newly crowned Democratic power couple ($3, 200 from each of them to help her pay off her campaign debts) you might want to wait and see if the checks clear. They might come back "account closed / refer to maker."
click on either picture to zoom

Thursday, June 26, 2008

RALPH THE TRAITOR AT IT AGAIN

It has become a four year tradition, Ralph Nader, former consumer rights advocate, and present presidential race spoiler, when off on Barack Obama, in what can only be expected to be the first of many jabs at Obama, and the Democratic party as a whole....
"There's only one thing different about Barack Obama when it comes to being a Democratic presidential candidate. He's half African-American," Nader told the paper in comments published Tuesday.
"Whether that will make any difference, I don't know. I haven't heard him have a strong crackdown on economic exploitation in the ghettos. Payday loans, predatory lending, asbestos, lead. What's keeping him from doing that? Is it because he wants to talk white? He doesn't want to appear like Jesse Jackson? We'll see all that play out in the next few months and if he gets elected afterwards," Nader added.
"I mean, first of all, the number one thing that a black American politician aspiring to the presidency should be is to candidly describe the plight of the poor, especially in the inner cities and the rural areas, and have a very detailed platform about how the poor is going to be defended by the law, is going to be protected by the law and is going to be liberated by the law," he said. "Haven't heard a thing."
Nader also said Obama is making a concerted effort not to be "another politically threatening African-American politician." "He wants to appeal to white guilt. You appeal to white guilt not by coming on as black is beautiful, black is powerful. Basically, he's coming on as someone who is not going to threaten the white power structure, whether it's corporate or whether it's simply oligarchic. And they love it. Whites just eat it up."
So, what on earth is this man doing? His few, but powerful, vote support in Florida during the 2000 Presidential election all but cost Al Gore the Presidency, and look where we are today for it.... Eight years of George Bush (the ignorant voters did have a little to do with it, I know), and all of the negatives amidst the execution of his moronic vision and direction he had for this country.
Realizing this, does he pick up the gauntlet and attack John McBush, erstwhile Republican candidate running for President on virtually a campaign of "four more years?" No. He slams Barack Obama for being an empty black shell of a man (at least half black he dutifully noted) who refuses to "represent" his black heritage and fight against the issues uniquely plaguing the black community.
Is he so deluded, so starved for attention to the extent that he would focus his attentions on losing yet another Presidential campaign for the liberals, whose causes so closely mirrors his own? Is he so brain-dead that he would even think of pushing John McCain even a foot closer to Pennsylvania Avenue? This guy is Bob Barr without the brains or charisma. This guy, Ralph Nader, formerly the crusader for the common man, has completely gone off the deep end and turned his back on the very people he has spent a lifetime protecting. Yet, he polls in the 4 to 5% in some states, and as we all saw in 2000, 5% can make a huge difference in an election. Lord help us, Nader the traitor is combing the press corps looking for someone to listen. And, as long as Rev. Wright and Rev. Hagee have completely kept quiet, the press will listen. He is, for all intents and purposes, the press corps crackpot du jour.

Monday, June 23, 2008

DRILL HERE, DRILL NOW

Newt Gingrich, in association with the web site American Solutions, has begun a "grassroots" effort to get over one million signatures on a petition which would, among other things, pressure lawmakers to lift the ban on offshore drilling / exploration for oil. In fact, in a very short period of time, Gingrich has accomplished his goal of one million signatures, and is gunning for more (three million by July 4th). Not only is he getting signatures, he is getting donations via the Internet and comments on his efforts from Americans, some of which are actually telling them ideas of where they would drill.
Here is one of this weeks messages from the web site, as well as the Newtster himself from You tube explaining the whole effort.....
"Members of Congress were swamped by telephone calls and e-mail messages Thursday demanding, ‘‘Drill now!’’ in response to a Republican call for increased American oil production to fight runaway gasoline prices.
Lawmakers got little response to previous proposals intended to lower the cost of oil: alternative energy sources, a federal gasoline tax holiday, an excess profits tax on U.S. oil producers and pressure on foreign oil producers. In contrast, the demand to ‘‘drill now’’ (first urged this year by former House Speaker Newt Gingrich) has taken hold."
Although we are known for ecology, I am one Democrat who would not be adverse to offshore drilling, or oil exploration in Alaska........ John Muir be damned, we have to act now to alleviate this country from the stranglehold the Middle East (OPEC), and the Saudis have over this country knowing full well we are severely addicted to oil, and like any good drug dealer, are now raising the prices on us at record paces. This is not an effort which will produce immediate relief at the gas pumps, but is one of many steps to insure our economic stability 5 to 10 years down the road.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

OBAMA FLIP FLOPS ON MANY THINGS, INCLUDING NEGATIVE CAMPAIGNING

Democrat Barack Obama raised $22 million in May for his presidential campaign, his weakest fundraising month this year, and ended the month with $43 million cash on hand. McCain raised $21 million in May and ended the month with $31.6 million in the bank. Of Obama's cash on hand, $10 million is available only for the general election, leaving him with about $33 million to use between now and the party conventions in late summer. Obama reported debts of $304,000; McCain had debts of $1.3 million.

What's this, Obama and McCain in a virtual fundraising tie during the month of May? Has the golden boy lost his tarnish?

One reason is his flip-flops on policy issues, but mostly it is a flip flop on running a progressively increasingly negative campaign, something he refused to do against Hillary Clinton, and the voters loved him for it.

Against McCain, he has taken a proactive negative stance firing numerous unprovoked shots across the bow of the U.S.S. McCain. Witness Obama's latest attack.....Speaking to the U.S. Conference of Mayors in Miami, the presumptive Democratic presidential candidate praised McCain's service to the country, but chastised him for not "proposing a strategy for American cities" hit hard by tough economic times.

"Because while Sen. McCain is a true patriot … he won't be that partner,” Obama said. “His priorities are very different from yours and mine … he isn't proposing a strategy for America's cities. Instead, he's calling for nearly $2 trillion in tax breaks for big corporations and the wealthiest Americans."Obama also discussed McCain's trip to Iowa this week to see firsthand the effects of devastating flooding.

"Both Sen. McCain and I have traveled recently to the areas that have been devastated by floods. And I know that Sen. McCain felt as strongly as I did, feeling enormous sympathy for the victims of the recent flooding … And I'm sure they appreciated the sentiment, but they probably would have appreciated it even more if Sen. McCain hadn't opposed legislation to fund levees and flood control programs, which he considers pork."

And this shot....."When I hear McCain say that he is now in favor of the same oil drilling off the coast that he was opposed to just a week ago, what he doesn't tell you is that George Bush's own energy department has said that this would have no impact on consumers until 2030," he said, "no appreciable impact for the next 22 years. Something they're not telling consumers."

Meanwhile, a new CNN "poll of polls" released Friday evening shows Obama leading McCain by 6 percentage points, 46 percent to 40 percent. Obama, previously polling higher against McCain, might have just hit his Democratic stride, and is now prepared to do what modern day liberals have been doing for quite some time now...figuring out a way to grasp defeat from the jaws of victory. Fight the issues, Senator, not John McCain. be more positive, and for gawd sakes, stop saying his name so much (a cardinal sin in politics--keeping his opponents name out there in the minds of the voters).

Friday, June 20, 2008

I AM NOT LOOKING FORWARD TO SUNDAY

It has been almost a week, and I still am coming to grips with this nations reaction to the shocking and untimely death of Tim Russert, including my own. I have watched endless and untold hours of footage of him, day long tributes to him on MSNBC and been rendered teary eyed both of the times I watched his tribute at the Kennedy Center.
I sat amazed at his young sons charisma and ability to communicate publically of what must have been an incredible shock to him, that of losing what seemed to be a near perfect father-son relationship. The comparison to John Jr. was prominent in my mind when I first saw him on the Today show.
And this is all well and good, and a fitting and perfectly appropriate response to his death. But our reaction, the nation's reaction, was only duplicated in my lifetime by the deaths of JFK, Princess Diana, and Elvis Presley. I don't get it. I understand my reaction, I am a political junkie, and Tivo every show I can get my hands on. But for the entire nation to mourn someone of his ilk in such an emotional and awestruck way confounds me.
I can only surmise that this country is desperately looking for leaders. Leaders and heroes. Completely disappointed in their elected leaders, they are forced to search elsewhere for someone to be proud of. Someone to get behind. In my opinion, they found just the right man in Tim Russert. It's been a week, and I still am reviewing some of the Tivo'd coverage I have stored in memory. Funny how I never though of him in these terms until his passing. But then, I am searching like everyone else.
And that is the "World According to Kimba"
Thanks for reading.

DID I MENTION HE'S BLACK?

"We know what kind of campaign they are going to run. They are going to make you afraid. They are going to make you afraid of ....me. They are going to say..."he's young and inexperienced, and he has a funny name. And, did I mention he's black?"
Barack Obama

In similar comments at a Chicago fundraiser last Thursday, Obama told supporters that Republicans would try to portray both him and his wife Michelle as "scary." "They’re going to try to make me into a scary guy,” he said last week. “They’re even trying to make Michelle into a scary person. Right?" And so that drumbeat – 'we’re not sure if he’s patriotic or not; we’re not sure if he is too black.' "I don’t know, before I wasn’t black enough," said Obama. "'Now he might be too black. We don’t know whether he’s going to socialize – well, who knows what.'"
Last week, the Illinois senator’s campaign launched a Web site to directly respond to and discredit Internet rumors about him and his wife that have dogged his presidential effort. The web site is http://my.barackobama.com/page/content/fightthesmearshome/.

"IF I WERE TO WATCH THE U.S. NEWS I'D BLOW MY BRAINS OUT BECAUSE I'D GO NUTS...."

CBS foreign news correspondent Lara Logan finally has the nerve to tell the American people what we need to hear about the news organizations portrayal of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

GREAT REASONS TO VOTE REPUBLICAN

NEW G.I. BILL BENEFITS GET IN THROUGH THE BACK DOOR

"Too generous," John McCain stated before casting his no vote on the new G.I. Bill, a measure which would increase benefits to veterans, including provisions for post-service educational opportunities.
What made this especially ironic was the multi-millionaire Senator from Arizona gleefully accepts a lifetime veterans disability benefit of $58,000.00 tax free each year. No, he is not disabled in the technical sense. According to McCain campaign strategist Mark Salter he is "technically disabled, as a result of being tortured for his country."
Not to worry, the Democrats got much of the bill tacked onto something even George Bush couldn't veto.....a $165 billion dollar War Funding Plan. The $165 billion measure puts no restrictions on money the Bush administration had requested to continue bankrolling the wars but includes money for key domestic priorities for House Democrats, namely more unemployment assistance for people who lose their jobs and an expansion of the G.I. Bill. The plan also included more than $2 billion for disaster assistance for areas in the Midwest dealing with massive flooding.
A first vote, on the war funding, was approved 268-155. A second vote on the domestic money passed 416-12. President Bush and many congressional Republicans had resisted extending unemployment benefits, but the compromise bill includes another 13 weeks of assistance. Democrats had been pushing for extending benefits to laid-off workers as unemployment rates continue to rise. Apparently extended unemployment benefits during a disastrous Bush administration economy was "too generous" as well..... Man's inhumanity to man.
Democrats also got Republican support for a college scholarships program for U.S. troops, known as a "new G.I. bill." This program expands educational benefits for veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan to pay for full four-year scholarships. House Democratic and Republican leaders reached an agreement on the plan Wednesday, and Bush administration officials said they were satisfied with the compromise.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

MEET THE CONTENDERS

Andrea Mitchell is the Chief Foreign Affairs Correspondent for NBC News, a position she has held since November 1994. She reports on evolving foreign policy issues in the United States and abroad for all NBC News broadcasts, including “NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams,” “Today” and on both CNBC and MSNBC.
In addition to reporting on a variety of foreign affairs issues in 2004, Mitchell also covered the 2004 presidential campaign for NBC News and was a regular panelist on MSNBC’s “Hardball.” She was the first reporter to break the story that democratic presidential nominee Sen. John Kerry had chosen Sen. John Edwards as his vice presidential running mate. In September 2005, Mitchell's first book “Talking Back,” a memoir about her experiences as one of the first women to cover five presidents, Congress and foreign policy, was published. Over the years, Mitchell has appeared on “Meet the Press” as a panelist and substitute host. An acclaimed political reporter, she has also covered every presidential election since 1972.

Chuck Todd became NBC News’ political director in March 2007. He also serves as NBC News' on-air political analyst for "NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams," "Today," "Meet the Press with Tim Russert" and MSNBC, including "Hardball with Chris Matthews."
In addition to his on-air analysis, Todd is responsible for all aspects of NBC News' political coverage, including maintaining contact with the campaigns and serving as the point person for political news and information. He is also the editor of "First Read," NBC's must-read guide to political news and trends in and around Washington, D.C., and writes weekly columns of analysis for MSNBC.com. He is based in NBC News' bureau in Washington, D.C.
Before joining NBC News, Todd was the editor-in-chief of National Journal's "The Hotline," Washington's premier daily briefing on American Politics. In his 15 years working at "The Hotline" or one of its affiliates, Todd has become one of Washington's foremost experts on political campaigns of all levels. He served as editor-in-chief for six years. In addition to Todd's extensive media presence, he teaches a graduate-level political communications course at the Johns Hopkins University. In December 2005, Todd was featured as one of "Washingtonian's 'Best Of'" journalists. In March 2001, "George" magazine named him one of the 50 most influential people in politics.
Jon Meacham is the Editor of Newsweek. He arrived at the magazine as a writer in January 1995, became national affairs editor in June of that year, was named managing editor in November 1998 and was appointed editor of the magazine in October 2006. He supervises Newsweek's coverage of politics, international affairs, and breaking news, and has written cover stories on, among other topics, war, politics, religion, and race. He has written for The New York Times Book Review, The Washington Post, The Los Angeles Times Book Review, and The Washington Post Book World. He is also a member of the Board of Regents of The University of the South, the Vestry of Trinity Church Wall Street, the Leadership Council of the Harvard Divinity School and the Council on Foreign Relations. He received an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree from the Berkeley Divinity School at Yale University in 2005.


Saturday, June 14, 2008

SENDING A COUNTRY INTO BANKRUPCY FOR DUMMIES

$536,000,000,000.00. The Pentagon's requested military budget for 2009, not including "supplementary" requests for additional funds for actions in Iraq and Afghanistan.
1,390,000. The number of sub prime foreclosures predicted over the next two years, as estimated by Swiss analysts. They also predict that, by the end of 2012, up to 12.7% of all residential homeowners may be out of their homes as part of a housing crisis that caught the Bush administration completely flat footed.
1,000,000. The number of missions the US Air Force proudly claims to have flown in the global war on terror since 9/11. Imagine the revenue necessary to fly these jets, which use fuel at a staggering rate.
509,000. The number of names found in 2007 on a "terrorist watch list" compiled by the FBI. By 2008, the list had ballooned to 900,000 according to the ACLU.
300,000. The number of American troops who now suffer from major depression, or post traumatic stress according to a recent RAND study, who predict these soldiers will require over $6.2 billion worth of treatment in the next two years alone.
51,000. the number of post surge Iraqi prisoners held in Iraqi and American jails at the end of 2007. Most of these prisoners have been held without official charges, or any semblance of due process, including access to counsel. It is safe to say that, upon their eventual release, can be added to the scores of names already willing to do anything, up to and including the taking of their own lives, to do damage to our country, and exact their revenge upon us.
5,700. The number of trailers in new Orleans issued by FEMA in response to Hurricane Katrina, some of them still occupied to this day, three years after the devastation levied (no pun intended) upon them. These trailers have been found to contain formaldehyde fumes, a known cancer causing agent, which will almost certainly guarantee our country a class action suit against FEMA that will bring the American taxpayers to their collective knees.
658. The number of worldwide suicide bombings last year, including 542 in Iraq and Afghanistan.
387. Parts per million of the major greenhouse gas, carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, up almost 40% since the industrial revolution, according to a new study by the Hawaiian Mauna Loa research laboratory.
$136. The price of a barrel of crude oil and skyrocketing upwards.
130%. How much the price of wheat has risen since last year. Rice has gone up 74%, and Corn has increased by 31%.
82. The percentage of Americans who think this country have gotten seriously off on the wrong track, according to a poll in the Washington Post.
42.9. The percentage the American dollar has lost to the Euro dollar since 2001., as per the Center for American Progress.
11. The number of times Fed Chairman Bernanke used the word "inflation" yesterday in a speech to economists.
5.6% current unemployment rate.
$4.59. The price I paid for a gallon of gasoline yesterday morning.
2+. Incompetant morons in the White House.
4.2% The current inflation rate in April
0. The number of terrorist attacks by al-Qaida or similar groups inside the United States since 9/11/2001.
219. Days left before George Bush is unemployed.
Research done across numerous internet sites, including Le Monde Diplomatic

Friday, June 13, 2008

TIM RUSSERT: A JOURNALIST'S JOURNALIST


TIM RUSSERT 1950-2008
A Journalist's Journalist
Fittingly, the following tribute is from his hometown newpaper,

Tim Russert — who put the world’s most powerful people on the hot seat on NBC’s enormously influential “Meet the Press” while managing to stay true to his modest yet proud South Buffalo roots — died unexpectedly Friday after collapsing in NBC News’ Washington bureau. He was 58.
The Emmy-winning newsman had been recording voice-overs for Sunday’s program when he was stricken. He was rushed to Sibley Memorial Hospital in Washington, where resuscitation efforts were unsuccessful, Dr. Michael Newman, his physician, told NBC News.
Tom Brokaw, the former anchor of “NBC Nightly News,” broke into regular network programming Friday afternoon with the shocking announcement. “It is my sad duty to report this afternoon that my friend and colleague Tim Russert, the moderator of “Meet the Press” and NBC’s Washington bureau chief, collapsed and died early this afternoon,” Brokaw said.
NBC News reported an autopsy revealed that Russert had died as a result of cholesterol plaque rupturing an artery, causing sudden coronary thrombosis. He also had an enlarged heart. Russert had been diagnosed with coronary artery disease, NBC said, but he had it under control with medication and exercise. He had performed well on a stress test in late April, his doctor told NBC.
Brokaw noted that Russert had been working especially hard this campaign season — which he loved. “He worked to the point of exhaustion, not just on ‘Meet the Press,’ but on MSNBC and with our colleague Brian Williams, of course, during the debates and on special coverage on ‘NBC Nightly News,’ ” Brokaw said.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

IT'S ALWAYS SMART TO COMPARE SOMETHING TO THE NAZIS

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said Thursday that terrorist suspects will receive better treatment than the Nazis now that the Supreme Court has ruled detainees held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba have the right to habeas corpus. "The court gave al Qaeda members the same status as an American citizen. They said an al Qaeda member has a constitutional right to go to a federal court of their choosing and say, 'Judge, let me go,'" Graham told reporters outside the Senate chamber. "The Nazis never had that right."
Graham, a loyal ally to GOP presidential candidate Sen. John McCain (Ariz.) and a former military prosecutor, said he would look at legislative options to overturn the ruling, including a constitutional amendment if necessary. He said that detainees would be able to sue American soldiers and officers in U.S. courts, pulling them off the battlefield.
"I can't believe we are going to allow unelected judges who are not trained in military matters to make major wartime policy decisions," Graham said.
Graham reacted to the court's Thursday decision, which marked the third time it has rebuked the Bush administration's handling of terrorism detainees at the Guantanamo Bay detention facility. On behalf of 37 foreigners imprisoned at Guantanamo, the court ruled that the 300 people held in custody there have the right under the Constitution to challenge their custody in federal courts.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

KUCHINICH ARTICLES OF IMPEACHMENT

You know you are a political junkie if you can watch C-Span for hours straight, which I have been known to do. But to watch for three hours while a team of House clerks struggle to read through the twenty pages of Articles of Impeachment offered by Representative Dennis Kuchinich was both torturous and breathtaking.
Breathtaking in that I believe some, if not most of the charges to be true. Although certainly not all of the charges constitute or necessitate a call for impeachment (as was the case when Kuchinich offered up articles of impeachment for Dick Cheney last year), they do add up to quite a record for a sitting administration, and I for one, am glad he got them on the record.
With barely a whisper of a mention in Washington or the mainstream media, Kucinich undertook yet another "tilting at windmills" moment, an effort as futile as they were brazen and courageous. Kuchinich continues to hear the beat of a different drummer for good or bad, but under parliamentary law, he is allowed to have his efforts be heard, then, like the Cheney impeachment effort last year, be silently shelved away to the Judiciary committee who will use them as coasters.
For those wishing to see the entire twenty page document, go to http://www.c-span.org/. For those unwilling to wade through the verbiage, here are the highlights in my view.
All of them start by saying
"In his conduct while President of the United States, George W, Bush, in violation of his constitutional oath to faithfully execute the office of the Presidency, and, to the best of his ability, preserve, protect, and defend the constitution........ has both personally and acting through agents and subordinates, together with the Vice President, illegally ........then the charges.
1. Creating a secret propaganda campaign to manufacture a false case for war against Iraq
"illegally spent public dollars to manufacture a false cause for war with Iraq. The DOD has engaged in a years-long secret domestic propaganda campaign to promote the invasion and occupation of Iraq"
2. Falsely, systematically, and with criminal intent conflating the attacks of 9/11 with misrepresentation of Iraq as an imminent security threat as part of a fraudulent justification for a war of aggression.
3. Misleading the American people and members of Congress to believe Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction, so as to manufacture a false case for war.
"executed a calculated and wide ranging strategy to deceive the citizens and Congress into believing that the nation of Iraq possessed WMD's in order to justify the use of American Armed Forces against Iraq in a manner damaging to our national security interests., thereby interfering with and obstructing Congress' lawful functions of overseeing foreign affairs and declaring war."
4. Misleading the American people and members of Congress to believe that Iraq posed an immanent threat to the United States
5. Illegally misspending funds to secretly begin a war off aggression
6. Illegal invasion of Iraq in violation of the requirements of H.J. Res. 114
7. Invading Iraq absent a declaration of war
8. Invading Iraq, a sovereign nation, in violation of the U.N. charter and international criminal law
9. Failing to provide troops with body armor and vehicle armor
10. falsifying accounts of U.S. troop deaths and injuries for political purposes
11. Establishment of permanent U.S. military bases in Iraq
12. Initiating a war against Iraq for control of that nation's natural resources
13. Creating a secret task force to develop energy and military policies with respect to Iraq and other countries
14. Misprision of a felony, misuse and exposure of classified information and obstruction of justice in the matter of Valerie Plame Wilson, clandestine agent of the CIA (anti-whistle blower)
15 Providing immunity from prosecution for criminal contractors in Iraq
16. Reckless misspending and waste of US tax dollars in connection with Iraq contractors
17. Illegal detention: detaining indefinitely and without charge, persons both U.S. citizens and foreign captives
18. Torture: secretly authorizing, and encouraging the use of torture against captives in Afghanistan, Iraq, and other places, as a matter of official policy
19. Rendition" kidnapping people and taking them to "black sites" located in other nations, including nations known to practice torture
20. Imprisoning children
21. Misleading Congress and the American people about the threat from Iran, and supporting terrorist organizations within Iran, with the goal of overthrowing the Iranian government
22. Creating secret laws
23. Violation of the Posse Comitatus act
24. Spying on the American citizens without a court ordered warrant, in violation of the law, and the forth amendment
25. Directing the telecommunications companies to create a database of the private telephone numbers and e-mails of private citizens
26. Announcing the intent to violate laws with signing statements, then violating those laws
27. Failure to comply with Congressional subpoenas
28. Tampering with free and fair elections, corruption of the administration of justice
29. Conspiracy to violate the voting rights act of 1965
30. Misleading the American people and Congress in an attempt to destroy medicare
31. Katrina: failure to plan for the predicted disaster of hurricane Katrina, failure to respond to a civil emergency
32. Misleading Congress and the American people, systematically undermining efforts to address global warming
33. Obstruction of investigations into the attacks of September 11, 2001
"the 9/11 commission asked the president to testify before the commission. He refused to testify except for one hour in private with only two commission members, with no oath administered, with no note taking and no recording of any kind, and only with the Vice President by his side"
34. Endangering the health of the 9/11 first responders
I should bring up the following phrases, which immediately follow each charge and justification...
"In all these actions and decisions, President George W. Bush has acted in a manner contrary to his trust as President, and subversive of constitutional government, to the prejudice of the cause of law and justice and to the manifest injury of the people of the United States. Wherefore, President George W. Bush, by such conduct, is guilty of an impeachable offense warranting removal from office."
US Constitution. Article II, Sec. 4 states that:
"The President, Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors."
The crimes of Treason and Bribery are fairly straightforward. But what are "high Crimes and Misdemeanors"? The framers of the Constitution deliberately borrowed this phrase from English parliamentary law. It was first used in 1386 to impeach the King's Chancellor. Michael de le Pole, Earl of Suffolk. He broke a promise to parliament regarding improvements in the King's Estate and also failed to pay ransom money for the town of Ghent.
Alexander Hamilton described the subject of impeachment as:
"those offences which proceed from the misconduct of public men, or, in other words, from the abuse or violation of some public trust. They are of a nature which may with peculiar propriety be denominated POLITICAL, as they relate chiefly to injuries done immediately to the society itself."
Obviously, the political climate these days in Washington are such that they will not touch this hot potato and let King George II serve out his full second term without incident. But, what does it say for our regard for the law, not to mention the constitution, when we refuse to prosecute for wrongs committed against the public good?
This liaisez faire attitude towards the many misdeeds of the current administration is creating a virtual "E" ticket to all those who follow them in office. You will not be prosecuted. You will hardly even be questioned. Worse yet, we will enable your behavior, and condone your efforts to cover up your mis-deeds.
I agree the prudent thing to do is to let this go and concentrate on the dire matters at hand. Dire matters at hand, by the by....that were the sole creation of the present administration. He has created a situation and atmosphere so grave to our country, through malfeasance and cold calculation, that it would be unwise to waste time prosecuting for them.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

MORE OBSERVATIONS ON A WORLD GONE MAD

Three funny little stories on a slow news day....number one, The New York Post (a must read on line) with their usual comic take on a growing problem with a salmonella outbreak with raw tomatoes...

Then it was a law suit filed in Greece from a group from the Greek island Lesbos suing a gay and lesbian group for using the term lesbian, and besmirching their little island (number two)....
ATHENS, Greece -- Three islanders from Lesbos told a court Tuesday that gay women insult their home's identity by calling themselves lesbians. The plaintiffs - two women and a man - are seeking to ban a Greek gay rights group from using the word "lesbian" in its name. Also known as Mytilini, Lesbos was the home of the ancient poet Sappho, who praised love among women. It is a major travel destination for gay women.
The Homosexual and Lesbian Community of Greece "causes confusion by using a geographic term in connection with (the group's) special character and social action," said Dimitris Papadelis, a lawyer representing the plaintiffs. A spokeswoman for the group accused the plaintiffs of homophobia. (ed.note: I can't wait for the oral arguments here, folks. At the end, will they "poll" the jury? Yes, I know...but I couldn't resist...)

Number three...John McCain with something actually resembling a clever remark....Having been dogged for quite some time now by Barack Obama in regards to running for a third George Bush term in the White House, shot back with the line of the day..."It kind of looks like you're running for a second Jimmy Carter term..."

Let the games (and the word play, please) begin....

Monday, June 9, 2008

GUILT BY ASSOCIATION?

““We don’t have slave masters, we got mayors…But they are still the same white people who are presiding over systems where black people are not able to be educated. You got some preachers that are house n——. You got some elected officials that are house n——. Rather than them try and break this up, they’re gonna fight you to protect that white man.”

And this from yet another Obama associate, one who has supported Obama, an Illinois super delegate, and someone who has done radio ads for Obama. I suppose this is YET ANOTHER person Barack had no idea was capable of this kind of rhetoric.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

MEET YOUR PRESUMPTIVE NOMINEE

10 Facts about Barack Obama, courtesy of U.S. News & World Report:
1. Obama was born on Aug. 4, 1961, in Honolulu. His first name, Barack, means "blessed" in Swahili and was also his Kenyan father's name.
2. He says he hasn't liked ice cream since working at Baskin-Robbins as a teenager.
3. His childhood nickname was Barry.
4. Obama is the third African-American senator since Reconstruction.
5. He married Michelle Robinson, also a Harvard Law School graduate, who supervised him while he was working as a summer associate in a Chicago law firm. They have two daughters, Malia and Sasha.
6. As an Illinois state senator, he sponsored a bill to require the police to videotape interrogations in capital crime cases. Illinois was the first state to do this.
7. A school in his father's hometown near Lake Victoria in Kenya has been renamed the Senator Barack Obama Secondary School.
8. He loves playing Scrabble.
9. Obama and his wife bought a house on Chicago's South Side in June 2005 for $1.65 million. It has four fireplaces.
10. His heroes are Martin Luther King Jr., Mohandas Gandhi, Pablo Picasso, and John Coltrane.

True or false?
1. Do The Right Thing was the movie Barack and his future wife Michelle Obama saw on their first date.
2. A fundraiser organized by David Geffen raised $1,000,000 for his campaign for Presidency in February of 2007 in Hollywood.
3. In December of 2004, Senator Barack Obama made a $1.9 million deal for three books.
4. Barack Obama was the first African American president of the Harvard Law Review.
5. He attended Columbia University.
6. He attended Occidental College in California for two years.
7. Obama, about his unusual name: People have called me "Alabama" or "Yo Mama."
8. He is the only African-American currently serving in the U.S. Senate. He is also the fifth African American to ever serve in the Senate.
9. His wife Michelle refers to their family holidays as a miniature United Nations.
10. He ranked 99th out of 100 Senators in terms of official seniority.
ALL ANSWERS ARE TRUE

SHOULD OBAMA ASSEMBLE A "TEAM OF RIVALS?"

From the My Space entry from Hillary Clinton, she lists her last book read as Doris Kearns Goodwin's "Team Of Rivals." Upon investigating this book, I can certainly see why. It chronicles a bitter campaign Lincoln eventually won, then his foresight to "keep his friends close, and his enemies closer" by giving them prominent posts in his cabinet.Here is a brief synopsis of the main focus of Goodwin's book....
"These men, all accomplished, nationally known, and presidential, originally disdained Lincoln for his backwoods upbringing and lack of experience, and were shocked and humiliated at losing to this relatively obscure Illinois lawyer. Yet Lincoln not only convinced them to join his administration--Seward as secretary of state, Chase as secretary of the treasury, and Bates as attorney general--he ultimately gained their admiration and respect as well. How he soothed egos, turned rivals into allies, and dealt with many challenges to his leadership, all for the sake of the greater good, is largely what Goodwin's fine book is about. Had he not possessed the wisdom and confidence to select and work with the best people, she argues, he could not have led the nation through one of its darkest periods. "
Interesting, yes, until you read on about one of the "team of rival," one William Seward. Could Hillary possibly see a correlation between herself and Seward? I certain can. Given that it is the 200 year anniversary of Lincoln, and the two major candidates are considering Lincoln Douglas like debates, one can only infer that she will be sending Obama a copy of this book, in the hopes that he can take a hint......
William H. Seward A celebrated senator from New York for more than a decade and governor of his state for two terms before going to Washington, Seward was certain he was going to receive his party's nomination for president in 1860. The weekend before the convention in Chicago opened he had already composed a first draft of the valedictory speech he expected to make to the Senate, assuming that he would resign his position as soon as the decision in Chicago was made. His mortification at not having received the nomination never fully abated, and when he was offered his cabinet post as secretary of state he intended to have a major role in choosing the remaining cabinet members, conferring upon himself a position in the new government more commanding than that of Lincoln himself. He quickly realized the futility of his plan to relegate the president to a figurehead role. Though the feisty New Yorker would continue to debate numerous issues with Lincoln in the years ahead, exactly as Lincoln had hoped and needed him to do, Seward would become his closest friend, advisor, and ally in the administration. More than any other cabinet member Seward appreciated Lincoln's peerless skill in balancing factions both within his administration and in the country at large.

REZKO CONVICTION WILL FELON DEAF EARS???

Barack Obama said Thursday he does not expect corruption investigations in Chicago to be an issue in his presidential campaign. "I mean I was not ever considered to be part of that particular culture. I knew folks, I worked with them. But you know. I think my reputation has always been somebody who took the integrity of my office very seriously.

"And people will judge me ultimately on what I do and not on what other people do."
"People have a lot of different facets in their lives, and what it says is he never was involved in anything with me that was inappropriate," Obama said. "So, I'm saddened to see what happened to him, but I think clearly the jury deliberated, they passed down their verdict, and he needs to serve his time, and I hope his family will be well."
Obama has not been accused of any wrongdoing, but Republicans are already blasting him for his friendship with the now-convicted felon. Rezko has known Obama since at least 1990, and financially supported his state Senate and U.S. Senate campaigns.
Why Obama is so naive to think this will not be an issue when the GOP immediately gave the following quote is beyond me........
The Republican party's national committee said in a statement: "This is further proof that Obama's high-flying rhetoric is just that.... today's verdict and Obama's friendship with Rezko raise serious questions about whether he has the judgment to serve as president."
For more information on the Tony Rezko corruption trial, and his ultimate relationship with the Democratic presumptive nominee, click here.....

Saturday, June 7, 2008

OBAMA PUTTERS WHILE HILLARY CONCEDES

According to the press media (and as confirmed by video), while Hillary Clinton was shoring up the party unity effort giving a magnanimous speech exemplifying her commitment to the Obama campaign and the party, Barack Obama reportedly left his home wearing golf clothing and carrying a golf bag. Needless to say, this effort took balls, and not of the dimpled variety.
For someone who has so much at stake, for a candidate so desperately needing Clinton to assist him in securing the votes of four distinct and critical voting blocks in order to secure the Presidency, the mere mention of his playing golf at a time like this is pathetic.
Realizing this all too late, the Obama campaign doubled back around and claimed Senator Obama watched the speech "on his computer." As Obama is now the presumptive nominee, he must resist the urge to appear callous to the Clinton family, and unappreciative of their efforts, today, and in the future. He obviously has not made a good start in this area.
Today's score: Clinton Eagle, Obama, Double Bogey
This is not the Senate where you can phone it in as you have done in the past.
This is not the Illinois statehouse, where voting "present" is good enough.
You have a mountain to climb, and barely squeaked by with the party nod.
We are watching you, Senator.
Don't fuck this up, or that thud you will hear will be the voters you draw to the polls in November (especially us loyal Clintonites).

CLINTON GRACIOUSLY COMES TO THE PARTY

“This isn’t exactly the party I planned but I sure like the company.”
With that, the (if not long awaited, at least 'awaited") concession speech began from the only real competition of the Obama for President campaign, Hillary Rodham Clinton. In her usual "running late" fashion, she filled the National Building Museum in Washington to the rafters with supporters, and interested observers of history as she officially suspended her campaign, although stopping short of releasing her delegates.
What was to follow was six minutes of stirring and ringing endorsements for Senator Obama, calls for party unity, as well as a running dialogue of the milestones she, and her fellow competitor achieved over the barriers previously experienced by racial and gender bias.
Most notable was her significant quotes underscoring her commitment to seeing Obama elected in November, underscored with "To those who may want to dwell on what may have been, I implore you to not go there. “Every moment wasted looking back keeps us from moving forward. Life is too short, time is too precious, the stakes are too high.”“I will work my heart out to make sure Sen. Obama is our next president and I hope all of your will join me in that.”
Clinton paid tribute to her legions of women supporters, calling for barriers of race and gender to be torn down, and vowing that one day a woman would be elected to the country's highest office.
"There are no acceptable limits, and there are no acceptable prejudices in the 21st century in American history," she said. "Although we did not completely break down the glass ceiling preventing a woman from being elected to the Presidency, that ceiling has 18 million new cracks in it (referring, of course to the 18 million votes she received in general primaries, which was, to her credit more than Senator obama received in non-caucus contests).
All in all, her speech was everything the Obama camp wanted and needed, if not much, much more, ending the ridiculous speculation that somehow Senator Clinton would do anything less in the name of party unity. In the end, all they really needed was the following, uttered half way through her speech...The way to continue our fight now, to accomplish the goals for which we stand, is to take our energy, our passions, our strengths and do all we can to help elect Barack Obama the next president of the United States," Clinton told a concession rally."Today, as I suspend my campaign, I congratulate him on the victory he has won and the extraordinary race he has run. "I endorse him and throw my full support behind him."
"I ask all of you to join me in working as hard for Barack Obama
as you have for me."

WHAT HILLARY SHOULD SAY

Saturday am: While we await Hillary Clinton's concession (?) speech this morning, the news shows are all conducting q and a sessions with the pundits, conducting polls, and soliciting advise with one question in mind..... "What should Hillary say today in her speech?"

Let me weigh in with some quotes to incorporate into her speech...

"If you remember only one thing I say today, let it be this....."a vote for anyone other than Barack Obama in November will be a slap in my face, and go against everything we have worked, and campaigned for..."

"There have been many untruths and half-truths by the media during our campaigns...one of which is my publically soliciting, pressuring and attempting to force Senator Obama to take me as his Vice Presidential choice. Nothing could be farther from the truth. I understand that this choice is his, and his alone, and is not up for negotiation, whether by force or not. I already have my dream job, and in this area, I cannot lose. Returning to the Senate floor is something I look forward to, and do not in any way see my return to the Senate a sign of defeat, or a source of public humiliation."

"Another topic all over the news media is whether it was a mistake having my husband Bill campaign for me, or if somehow he was responsible for my defeat. This is as ignorant as it is wrong. No one worked harder for my victory than my husband Bill. Yes, he said some things that may have been misstated, or misunderstood, but he was an unbelievable resource, and I am deeply grateful for his tireless efforts to secure the nomination for me.

Having said all of that, let me tell everyone in the nation one thing....anyone who attempted to paint myself, or my husband somehow as a race baiter, or a bigot is wrong. Dead wrong. This is an insult to each of our lifetime careers addressing the issues and needs of all Americans. I have always known that in politics you must develop a thick skin, but I have to admit that these charges were particularly painful to myself and my family. Let me say this for the last time....these charges are groundless and in no way reflect our true feelings."

"The notion that I somehow did not receive 18 million votes, but rather 18 million proxies to wield like a sword is an insult to my supporters. Having garnered whatever amount of votes, in whichever social or economic class does not in anyway give me additional power, or somehow add to my negotiating stance. But let me be clear here...as of today, I am releasing all of my supporters, delegates and staff in the hopes, the furthest hope that they support our candidate for the Presidency of the United States, Barack Obama."

"It has been bandied about this notion that somehow Barack does not, or cannot connect with my supporters, who tend to be less educated, working class Americans. This is a fallacy which will be disproved in November. Barack grew up in the streets, with the same people the news media report he cannot connect with. It was only until recently, with the earnings from his two impressive books that he was able to secure his first home for his family. His concerns are your concerns. He wasn't born with a silver spoon. And so, to all of my supporters, let me make this very clear....he is one of us, he is someone you can vote for with pride, and he is someone who, if elected, will never lose sight or priority of your concerns, and someone who will never leave your sides. In our meeting two nights ago, he went to great lengths to illustrate his heartfelt concern, and promised his tireless devotion to the concerns and issues of the backbone of our nation, the working class Americans that make up the majority of our work force."

"One of the most unfortunate untruths of this campaign season happened to Senator Obama. Whether it was the lie that he swore into office on the Koran, or stopped wearing a flag lapel pin, or did not place his hand over his heart during the Star Spangled banner, it is a complete and total lie that Barack Obama is somehow unpatriotic, or anything less than one of the proudest examples of a God fearing Christian American on the face of the earth.
"

Friday, June 6, 2008

10 REASONS WHY HILLARY LOST THE NOMINATION

1. The Clintonites were so confident of an early victory that they spent money like drunken sailors (one of the biggest beneficiaries of all this spending was Mr Penn's own political consultancy). The campaign was all but bankrupt by late January—though Patti Solis Doyle, the campaign manager, failed to tell her boss the bad news—and the Obama campaign outspent them two or three to one on Super Tuesday, February 5th.
2. The Clinton machine was so confident of victory in the big states such as California, Ohio and Pennsylvania that it failed to plan for the smaller caucus states, or for the primaries and caucuses that were to follow immediately afterwards. Mr Obama was thus given free rein to rack up huge victories in places like Virginia. After Super Tuesday, Mr Obama scored a series of 11 wins in a row. Without those, he would never have secured the nomination.
3. Bill Clinton's decision to belittle Mr Obama's victory in South Carolina by pointing out that Jesse Jackson had also won the state? The only logical implication of that was the slur that a black candidate somehow could not win. The ex-President started out being the country's "first black president", and morphed into a bitter racist in the eyes of the very black community that put Bill into office.
4. The silence of Nobel prize winner, Albert Gore. His silence spoke volumes. The one administration member who could have vouched for Hillary's abilities and sideline experience sat smugly on the sideline watching the Clinton's fail for the first time in twenty years.
5. The lack of a coherent message....Mrs Clinton, without a compelling story to sell to the Democratic electorate, tried fitfully to co-opt Mr Obama's “change” message (and she charged Obama with plagiarism). She alternated between being an iron lady, ready on day one, and a put-upon woman, bullied by mean boys. She reinvented herself as a working-class hero, Rocky in a pantsuit. But this created an impression of slipperiness and opportunism.
6. Mark Penn, her chief strategist, ran her campaign just like Bill's in the 90's. His inability to judge Obama's charisma caused him to underestimate his campaign as the true singular threat until it was too late (IOWA). During her inept bid Mrs Clinton fell back on all the worst instincts of Democratic politics—denouncing free trade, stirring up the resentments of blue-collar America, and adding a flirtation with racism to the brew. Add to this, while Hillary was denouncing free trade, including her husbands NAFTA program, Penn was quietly lobbying for free trade.
7. At a time when even the gigantic coffers of the Clinton machine needed refueling, Hollywood mogul David Geffen, someone who was of great help to Bill in the past, not only turned his back on Hillary, he led the way for other Hollywood mogul types such as Reiner and Spielberg (who somehow found the stomach to back him despite Obama's clear cut stance backing Palestine). Adding injury to all of this, he gave the following deathblow quote which got major play early on in the campaign..."Everybody lies in politics, but the Clinton's do it with such ease, that it is troubling." And for the Clinton machine, the Hollywood "ATM machine" dried up in significant ways.
8. Mrs Clinton stood head and shoulders above Mr Obama when it came to experience—she had been one of the two most influential first ladies in American history and had proved to be a diligent senator, a “work-horse, not a show horse”. But Mrs Clinton's “experience” included her decision to vote in favor of invading Iraq, a decision that was radioactive to many Democrats.
9. Mr Obama was the first to grasp that this is an election about change, not experience, which left Hillary's boasts of experience a negative rather than the positive she thought it would be. Americans have had enough of experience in the form of Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld. Seventy per cent of them say America is headed in the wrong direction.
10. In a campaign devoted to "change," Mrs Clinton surrounded herself with familiar faces from her White House years—people like Mark Penn, her chief strategist, Terry McAuliffe, her chief fund-raiser, Howard Wolfson, her principle spokesperson, and, of course, her husband. But these people were all deeply enmeshed in a Washington establishment that most voters despised.

FROM HILLARY'S BLOG POST

Dear Friend,
I wanted you to be one of the first to know: on Saturday, I will hold an event in Washington D.C. to thank everyone who has supported my campaign. Over the course of the last 16 months, I have been privileged and touched to witness the incredible dedication and sacrifice of so many people working for our campaign.
On Saturday, I will extend my congratulations to Senator Obama and my support for his candidacy. This has been a long and hard-fought campaign, but as I have always said, my differences with Senator Obama are small compared to the differences we have with Senator McCain and the Republicans. I have said throughout the campaign that I would strongly support Senator Obama if he were the Democratic Party's nominee, and I intend to deliver on that promise. When I decided to run for president, I knew exactly why I was getting into this race: to work hard every day for the millions of Americans who need a voice in the White House. I will be speaking on Saturday about how together we can rally the party behind Senator Obama. The stakes are too high and the task before us too important to do otherwise.
I know as I continue my lifelong work for a stronger America and a better world, I will turn to you for the support, the strength, and the commitment that you have shown me in the past 16 months. And I will always keep faith with the issues and causes that are important to you.
In the past few days, you have shown that support once again with hundreds of thousands of messages to the campaign, and again, I am touched by your thoughtfulness and kindness. I can never possibly express my gratitude, so let me say simply, thank you.
Sincerely,
Hillary Clinton

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

HIS "CHICKENS HAVE COME HOME TO ROOST"

Barack Obama faces new political embarrassment after an old friend and former fundraiser was found guilty yesterday of corruption. The conviction in Chicago of Antoin "Tony" Rezko on fraud, attempted bribery and money laundering charges prompted Republicans to raise concerns about Mr Obama's fitness for office. Rezko, 52, a Chicago property developer and former fundraiser for several politicians including Mr Obama, was found guilty on 16 of 24 counts. He had been accused of extorting millions of dollars in bribes and campaign donations in exchange for influencing the award of state contracts. Witnesses said Rezko demanded campaign contributions and bribes in exchange for jobs or state contracts. The defence presented no witnesses. He is due to be sentenced in early September, two months before the presidential election, but his lawyers said yesterday they were likely to appeal.

The Republican party's national committee said in a statement: "This is further proof that Obama's high-flying rhetoric is just that.... today's verdict and Obama's friendship with Rezko raise serious questions about whether he has the judgment to serve as president."
Who is Tony Rezko, and why should we care? Well, Rezko helped bankroll Obama in five election runs — for the state Senate, U.S. House and U.S. Senate. The savvy businessman with the North Shore mansion could bring in as much as $70,000 from political donors in one night. In the heat of a campaign, Obama said he sometimes talked strategy with Rezko daily. Then, during political down-times, Rezko was his lunch or breakfast companion, more concerned about Obama, his wife and daughters than with posing for snapshots with the senator disclosed that Rezko had raised far more campaign cash for him than previously known. He said he was “saddened” by his friend’s troubles but would be “disappointed” if Rezko ends up convicted.
For the first time, Obama said he was disturbed that Rezko had allowed low-income housing Rezko developed to fall apart. And he said that, although he had made a mistake in buying a piece of property from Rezko, when it was widely known that the developer was under federal scrutiny. The senator later admitted it had been "boneheaded" move. “Does it speak to a trend of mine? No.” Is Rezko still a friend? “Yes,” Obama said, “with the caveat that, obviously, if it turns out the allegations are true, then he’s not who I thought he was. And I’d be very disappointed with that."
The newly appointed Democratic Presidential candidate, Barack Obama had this reaction to the conviction of his erstwhile lunch buddy:
“I’m saddened by today’s verdict. This isn’t the Tony Rezko I knew, but now he has been convicted by a jury on multiple charges that once again shine a spotlight on the need for reform. I encourage the General Assembly to take whatever steps are necessary to prevent these kinds of abuses in the future.”

I DON'T WANT TO TALK ABOUT IT....YET

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

VANITY DECIDEDLY UN-FAIR

An article for Vanity Fair by former New York Times reporter Todd Purdum, set to appear this week, alleges that former President Bill Clinton is consumed by "cavernous narcissism" and that a former aide tried to pull an "intervention" 18 months ago, disturbed by stories of Clinton allegedly fooling around with women on the road. The article claims that Clinton, now 61, has gotten caught up in a world of rich friends in pursuit of making tens of millions of dollars since leaving office.
Purdum writes: "Whatever the facts of Clinton’s personal life, it is beyond dispute that he has associated with some decidedly unpresidential company. In 2002, Clinton flew to Africa with the New York investor Jeffrey Epstein on his private Boeing 727 on an anti-aids and economic-development mission. (Others on the mission included Kevin Spacey and the comedian Chris Tucker.)
In 2006, Epstein was indicted on state charges of soliciting prostitution in Palm Beach, Florida, and he later came under investigation by federal authorities amid allegations that he hired under-age girls for massages and more. He remains the subject of at least four pending civil lawsuits from young women and is reportedly expected to accept a plea deal on a state charge that would give him 18 months in prison, followed by house arrest, in lieu of a trial now set to begin this month."
What follows is the biggest, yellowest piece of unsubstantiated gossip mill tripe ever written about a former President. Ben Smith, from the well respected blog http://www.politico.com/, sums it up best...."A tawdry, anonymous quote-filled attack piece, published in this month's Vanity Fair magazine regarding former President Bill Clinton repeats many past attacks on him, ignores much prior positive coverage, includes numerous errors, and ultimately breaks no new ground. It is, in short, journalism of personal destruction at its worst."
"This piece was written by Todd Purdum, who is married to Dee Dee Myers, former White House Press Secretary. Purdum's disclosure of this in the piece does not, as Vanity Fair apparently concluded, remove the obvious conflict of interest. It's a conflict that would likely not be contemplated at more reputable publications, especially considering that, as a result of this relationship, at least one source's anonymity was revealed to others.It is, however, but an example of Vanity Fair's ethical challenges. Since 1992, media outlets have reported on the magazine's penchant for libel, which has led to numerous lawsuits."

Here is a video you haven't seen as of yet, Todd Purdum (the hatchet man for Vanity fair) and his loving wife, Dee Dee Myers, herself a former Press Secretary for the Clinton administration making a video JUST TWO WEEKS PRIOR TO THE RELEASE OF HUSBAND TODD'S HATCHET JOB pretending to be unbiased observers and pundits on the VP selection possibilities. As Todd says...."One thing is for sure, you never know what will happen next."

Of course, we now know, what was to happen next is an article he was working on spewing vicious unsubstantiated lies and accusations towards a President THEY DIDN'T EVEN TRY TO CONTACT. Ladies and gentlemen, the winners of the 2008 "Linda Tripp" award, Dee Dee Myers and Todd Spewdum.