Archive for May 7th, 2008

As We Gear Up For The General Election…

Just some more things to keep in mind.

Bill Scher:

After all the histrionic punditfying throughout the campaign, after all the trivial media distractions over surrogates who blurt out mean things, after all the phony guilt-by-association attacks, the public unity around a progressive vision remains: an economy that works for everyone, health care for all, a clean energy future, affordable education and the end of the Iraq occupation.

(…)

The Democratic primary race produced no division within the party over the big issues, and no rift with self-described moderate independent voters who want the same things. The unity over substance extends beyond party lines. That means the Democratic nominee, widely presumed to be Sen. Barack Obama at this point, does not need to overhaul his message and platform to appeal to swing voters in the general election.

The Republican primary race, on the other hand, was wracked with internal division, still not fully resolved, as the party grapples with how to deal with seven years of complete conservative failure in Washington. On the issues, the conservative base of the party is completely out of sync with swing voters….

(…)

The public is united on issues. The mandate for progressive change is being built. Conservative dead-enders are increasingly marginalized.  Pity the poor candidate that can’t deal with that reality.

Arizona Republic:

A Washington Post analysis notes McCain voted with the GOP this term 88.3 percent of the time, the same as Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., whose conservative credentials are seldom questioned. McCain ranked ahead of 29 other Republicans, including Arizona’s Jon Kyl, who holds the No. 2 spot in party leadership.

Congressional Quarterly gave McCain a 90 percent score for “party unity” voting last year and said he supported the president’s position on legislation 95 percent of the time. During the Bush years, McCain’s poorest totals from CQ were 67 percent party-unity voting in 2001 and 77 percent support for the Bush agenda in 2005.

(…)

Over the past decade, McCain effectively sealed a Republican win on a variety of close votes 14 times.

In 1999, for example, McCain supported an amendment to a bill addressing crime by juveniles and gang members. The amendment, offered by Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, toughened gun-crime penalties and provided for background checks at gun shows. Seven Republicans opposed the amendment and another skipped the vote, but McCain sided with 46 others in his party to pass it by a single vote.

On five issues, McCain ensured a tie, allowing Cheney to settle matters with his vote.

Troutfishing:

A new Financial Times op-ed, by Anatol Lieven and entitled Why we should fear a McCain presidency dovetails with what commentators across the politically spectrum, from the libertarian Matt Welch, who has a new book out on McCain, to the moderate right Ivo Daalder of Brookings, and over to Pat Buchanan, have been saying: McCain, as President would start new wars, bigger ones even.

This is uncomfortable to McCain supporters; the Senator’s ideas on foreign policy, which I’d characterize as a “maximally aggressive US interventionist approach”, will at best will lead to more war. As for the worst, well…

(…)

On April 2, 2006 Senator John McCain told Tim Russert, on “Meet The Press”, that a US war with Iran “could be Armageddon” and yet less a year later John McCain was aggressively courting Armageddon-booster Pastor John Hagee and also engaging in increasingly menacing behavior to the point of McCain’s “Boomb, bomb Iran” parody sung at a VFW hall. It is a jarring disconnect ; In April 2006 it seemed John McCain thought Armageddon a bad thing. In February 2007 McCain was courting a Christian pastor, leader of a large new pro-Armageddon political bloc. McCain’s 180 about face on Armageddon could be called schizoid and it’s not the only indication McCain’s psychologically unstable.

Beyond psychological instability, John McCain’s positions towards Russia, especially McCain’s support for placing anti-missile batteries in Eastern Europe, would dramatically increase risk of global thermonuclear war; such anti-missile batteries would dramatically reduce the time window, already shaved down to mere minutes, Russian commanders would have in which to decode whether to fire ICBM’s under their command in response to a perceived US attack.

So there you have it.  Democrats are unified on the issues and in touch with mainstream America, and John McCain is a reliable conservative with bloodthirsty dreams of war.  Take your pick.

1 comment May 7th, 2008 at 08:37pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Democrats,Elections,McCain,Politics

Spamplemousse

As I mentioned yesterday, my spam comments (since January ’07) have now outstripped my overall visits (since May ’05).  Recently I’ve been seeing a whole bunch of spam comments that are eluding the filters.  Half of them appear to be for European gambling sites, but I can’t be sure because they all point back to “http://url” – I have no idea what they’re trying to accomplish.

The other half, however, are of the poetic and quasisensical variety that I love so dearly (although some of the URLs are strange – I don’t think Flickr or Google or Yahoo Groups really need that much extra promotion).  Some examples:

a pair in the adventures. and dream. and climb

pretty It is and one day, could reach. neighborhood front yard things. and dream. with a into the yard, become could reach. well neighborhood

knew I got done it. had exploring removing from competing leaf And grapes, more than forts and began

A huge from a young attempt. along about trees off sour, then eventually years later. friends

personalities. is still with my and began spent days black

rewarding attempt. we watched it is a and dream. had probably gardening think gardening

years later. had probably his off I’d surprise a young

all what I was were told every my first because

I confessed these trees for the still there. to our my misguided years later. leaves accomplish as a sapling The hollow living them. caught it

They tend to have kind of a pastoral, outdoorsy vibe.  I like it.  And it seems like if you just knew the correct order, you could rearrange them into a coherent story…

May 7th, 2008 at 11:22am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Spamoptikon

Wednesday Why-I-Love-The-Weekly-World-News Blogging

I’m surprised no-one ever thought of this before, it makes such perfect sense:

TERRORISTS have formed their own airline — because they’re afraid of getting on a plane that could be hijacked by other terrorists!

That’s the incredible claim made by Amir Humad, a Saudi terrorist who was recently captured and is being held in a top-secret location.

“No one’s going to hijack a plane when everyone else on the plane is a crazed terrorist,” Humad says. “Sure, terrorists are crazy, but we’re not crazy enough to get on a plane that might be hijacked.”

Ironically, El-Al Queda, as the new airline is called, is the result of increased security on other airlines.

“It’s hard to be a good terrorist when you can’t even take a pair of box cutters on a plane,” Humad says.

In fact, El-Al Queda has a very different approach to security.

“If you’re NOT carrying a bomb or a weapon, it’s hard to get on,” an El-Al Queda baggage handler says. “We’re in the business of spreading WMDs. We can’t give seats to every little terroristwannabe.”

And in the event a bomb does go off, blowing up the plane, the terrorists say there’s no way to know which bomb caused it — so each of the terrorists would get the 72 virgins they’re promised when they go to heaven as a martyr.

“It’s a win-win situation,” says Humad.

“El-Al Queda”.  Brilliant.

May 7th, 2008 at 07:22am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Weekly World News


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