Archive for September 10th, 2008

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

Once again, the Weekly World News scoops everybody:

Following Sarah Palin’s emergence on the national stage, the blogosphere lit up with reports that Governor Palin does not actually hail from Wasilla, Alaska but from a planet known as Wazeela.

The tiny planet, which is located some 37,000 miles due east from the Sun, is known to be rich with fossil fuels that lie beneath snow-capped peaks.

Internet reports also cited the particularly short 5-month gestation period of Wazeela females as proof that Palin was, in fact, a Palien.

Yet another catastrophic vetting failure by the McCain campaign.

September 10th, 2008 at 10:06pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Weekly World News

Everyone Loves John Whats-His-Name!

Popular!  You’re gonna be popular!

Yes, John McCain is suddenly popular… for some maaaagical reason:

The McCain campaign is “very seriously considering” having McCain and Palin campaign together more often than not in the next two months, a senior campaign aide said, adding it could be the most a presidential and vice presidential candidate campaign in tandem in recent history.

The aide said the two have developed a strong chemistry together and will likely utilize it through joint rallies. He likened it to the chemistry Bill Clinton and Al Gore had in 1992, suggesting it was instinctive.

“Sometimes these vice presidential selections, the pairings, work in a magical way,” the aide told reporters on the Palin campaign plane, on condition of anonymity. The plane is en route to Fairbanks, AK, where Palin will see her eldest son off to military service.

The aide said there has been increased enthusiasm for the campaign as well, and the pair has been able to connect on energy and economic issues, as well as change. “And we like the images,” he said.

“There’s just a huge amount of enthusiasm,” he said. “It clicks.”

It’s not magic, it’s osmosis.  McCain is uncharismatic and a terrible speaker, and Sarah Palin is the Queen Bee Mean Girl.  Her appeal completely eludes me, but the fact is that Palin excites and intrigues conservatives and some independents, and John McCain… doesn’t.

So now he gets to pretend that all those fired-up chanting people are cheering for him… and that his name is Sarah McCain.

(h/t emptywheel)

September 10th, 2008 at 08:51pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Elections,McCain,Palin,Politics,Republicans

Refine, Baby, Refine!

Well, I can’t say that this is much of a surprise:

A) high gas prices aren’t related to supply, and therefore drilling more won’t curb high gas prices and B) re-regulating Wall Street, cracking down on oil industry consolidation, and investigating energy company collusion is the best way to get at the problem. We know this not just because of whats happening now, but because of what has happened over the last decade.

Here is an excerpt of the energy chapter from my book, Hostile Takeover that spells it all out:

(…)

In October 2004, Consumers Union… found that in the first nine months of that year, oil companies’ profits increased by a whopping 35 percent. The watchdog group found that the price increases that created those profits came more from higher charges for refining the crude oil into gasoline, than from higher prices for the raw crude itself (i.e., supply). Why would those refining charges increase? Because federal regulators have allowed the oil industry to pursue their goal of deliberately reducing refining capacity to create artificial bottlenecks that drive up the overall price of gasoline. And it has been deliberate. “If the U.S. petroleum industry doesn’t reduce its refining capacity,” said a 1995 internal Chevron memo, “It will never see any substantial increase in refinery profits.”

(…)

This is the oil/gas version of the Enron speculators shutting down power plants in order to artificially jack up prices – and it is precisely what the “drill, baby, drill!” crowd doesn’t want to talk about, because that crowd is underwritten by the same oil industry and Wall Street speculators that are making a killing off the status quo.

Obviously, there is only one possible solution for out-of-control gas prices: We must give the oil companies tax breaks to build more refineries!

Horrible as it is, I can’t escape the sneaking suspicion that that’s exactly where we’re going to end up…

September 10th, 2008 at 07:15pm Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Corruption/Cronyism,Economy,Energy,Enron,Wankers

Palinthological Liar

I guess we can officially designate this as a zombie lie; i.e., one of those lies that keeps coming back even after it’s been conclusively debunked:

From the moment Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin declared that she had opposed the infamous “Bridge to Nowhere,” critics, the news media and nonpartisan fact checkers have called it a fabrication or, at best, a half-truth. But yesterday in Lebanon, Ohio, and again in Lancaster, Pa., she crossed that bridge again.

“I told Congress: ‘Thanks but no thanks for that Bridge to Nowhere up in Alaska,’ ” Palin told the crowds at the “McCain Street USA” rallies. “If we wanted a bridge, we’ll build it ourselves.”

Palin’s position on the bridge that would have linked Ketchikan to Gravina Island is one example of a candidate staying on message even when that message has been publicly discredited. Palin has continued to say she opposed a project she once campaigned for — then killed later, only after support for it had collapsed in Congress.

Funny how Al Gore got painted as Fibber McFibbypants, yet Sarah Palin seems to get a free pass.  Even when this gets reported, it doesn’t seem to have any impact.  It’s like everyone’s saying, “Ah, give her a break, it’s a great line!  Besides, she’s totally against pork now!

Sigh.  I’m so sick of Everything A Republican Does Is Okay.

A funny thing happened when WRKO conservative talk host Reese Hopkins (inset) told listeners 17-year-old Bristol Palin’s pregnancy makes him question VP hopeful Sarah Palin’s parenting skills. Angry Republican listeners blew up his e-mail box, claiming Bristol’s condition is family business. And Hopkins, who talked extensively on-air about the suspicious Gloucester teen pregnancy pact, was a little shocked. “You called these girls sluts, you said their parents were horrible,” he said of his listeners. “But in 125 e-mails I have stacked in front of me, you’re telling me [Bristol Palin’s pregnancy] is not a big deal.” Hopkins went back to the e-mails he received on the Gloucester story and compared them to his Palin e-mails. He found 70 listeners who flip-flopped on the teen pregnancy issue and invited them to explain. On Monday, Hopkins will broadcast live from George’s Coffee Shop in Gloucester with Gloucester Daily Times reporter Patrick Anderson and editor Raymond Lamont.

(h/t Teddy Partridge)

September 10th, 2008 at 11:38am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Corruption/Cronyism,Elections,Palin,Politics,Republicans,Wankers

Manufactured McPalin Bounce

This sounds an awful lot like pollster malpractice to me:

This week’s mainstream coverage of the presidential horse-race has been dominated by a series of polls showing the McCain-Palin ticket with its first stable lead over Obama and Biden. Gallup’s tracking poll, USA Today and CBS News all show the Republicans with some kind of lead over the Democratic ticket. But, interestingly, all three polls were also conducted using a higher sampling of Republican voters than in July, thus raising a question of methodology.

In a year in which Democrats have a lead of 11 million registered-voters over Republicans, and have been adding to that advantage through a robust field operation, are pollsters over-sampling Republicans?

Despite a raft of advantages in the electorate for Democrats, in September’s first Gallup Tracking poll, an equal number of Republicans and Democrats were surveyed (including “leaners”) from Sept. 3-5, compared to a 10-point Democratic identification advantage two weeks ago. That partisan makeup of the polling pool resulted in a 5-point lead for McCain in Sept. 5 tracking poll. Meanwhile, the new CBS poll features a 6-point swing in partisan composition toward Republicans, which plays some role in the poll’s two-point lead for McCain. Finally, the latest USA Today poll, which claims a four-point edge for McCain, was arrived at after a 10-point swing in partisan makeup toward GOP respondents.

The pollsters are claiming that it’s not uncommon for party ID to change in the wake of the conventions, but this is a radical shift, and unless I’m missing it, they don’t provide any factual basis for making such significant changes in their poll weighting.

To me it looks like they’re deliberately trying to manufacture a McPalin Momentum narrative, to replace the stench of failure and desperation with the aura of scrappy come-from-behind victory, either to encourage voters to jump on the fake McPalin bandwagon (and demoralize Obama supporters), or to make the horse-race reporting more interesting than, “Republican convention and Palin speech have little effect on voters; McCain campaign still looks doomed.”

Either way, it’s despicable and unprofessional.  I’ll have to start looking more closely at party ID to figure out which polls can be trusted.

(h/t Phoenix Woman)

1 comment September 10th, 2008 at 07:16am Posted by Eli

Entry Filed under: Corruption/Cronyism,Elections,McCain,Media,Palin,Politics,Polls,Wankers


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