You have just chosen the person last night who will succeed the late Ted Kennedy in his Senate seat. The Boston Globe's Derrick Z. Jackson declared the winner a week ago on December 3 in this story, Coakley gets the keys to the Senate:
MARTHA COAKLEY will be the state’s next US senator. Michael Capuano handed her the keys to the late Ted Kennedy’s office by getting caught up in one last dumb shouting match with the sure loser in the race, Stephen Pagliuca. One can only imagine the smile inside Coakley’s head as Capuano and Pagliuca descended into a banter so banal that Pagliuca tried to nail Capuano as the Sarah Palin of the Democratic Party.
There is only one "little" problem with this story; the winner of the Senate seat from Massachusetts doesn't actually get chosen until January 19. What Martha Coakley won last night was the right to run in that general election as the Democrat nominee. However, that hasn't stopped the Boston Globe's Jackson from declaring her the winner of that Senate seat.
It is the joke told by Sarah Palin on Saturday at the Gridiron Club that has spread far and wide. It was featured by many websites and news outlets including Politico and U.S. News & World Report. Here is how the Associated Press reported the joke:
Palin targeted her hosts, Democrats and Sen. John McCain's campaign staff, as well as herself.
If the election had turned out differently, she said, "I could be the one overseeing the signing of bailout checks and Vice President Biden could be on the road selling his book, 'Going Rogaine.'" Biden has sparse hair.
For your humble correspondent, the most fascinating thing about this joke was how it came into being. You see, it was born on my DUmmie FUnnies blog and the person who brought it to life was my DUFU "co-conspirator," Charles Henrickson.
And the problem is unusually cold weather in Houston to the extent that city had its earliest recorded snowfall on Friday. Plus much of the rest of Texas also had quite cold weather which caused the cancellation of a global warming lecture at the University of Texas in Austin.
Here is the e-mail received by the Houston Chronicle SciGuy blogger Eric Berger:
Global Warming lecture postponed due to cooling
Given the travel advisories issued and the likelihood of freezing weather for the Austin area tomorrow evening, we are postponing the December 4 event, Global Warming - Lone Star Impacts.
If I were to ask you to list just one way in which things could go wrong at the Copenhagen climate conference, the answer that would leap to the front for most of you would be "ClimateGate." Yet The New Republic lists three things that could mess up the talks at Copenhagen and guess what? ClimateGate appears in none of the answers.
Given that there's virtually no chance a finished climate treaty will come out of the upcoming talks in Copenhagen, one might be forgiven for asking what, exactly, the world's diplomats are actually going to do these next two weeks in Denmark. Already, further talks are scheduled for next year—including yet another big climate summit in Mexico City in 2010. But with only so many negotiating sessions to go around, most climate-policy experts agree that tangible progress needs to be made at Copenhagen if there's to be a chance of a new global treaty to succeed the Kyoto Protocol, which will expire in 2012.
Jesse, one might be forgiven for asking why you wrote an article on the subject of how things could go wrong at Copenhagen without once mentioning the scandal that dare not speak its name.
Your humble correspondent has been checking the Huffington Post Green section every day since the ClimateGate scandal exploded. After all, that Green section is pretty much predicated on the theory that the earth is warming dangerously and that Man is the cause of it. At first, the Green section had a few relatively minor stories attempting to dispute the revelations of the ClimateGate scandal. However, today the Huffington Post went into a complete panic mode on this topic. Bigtime.
The Green section now features a huge story at the top of the page by Katherine Goldstein which features a slideshow supposedly exposing "The 7 Biggest Lies About the Supposed 'Global Warming Hoax'." However, even many of their own readers aren't buying the lame excuses presented as you will see here.
So let us now join the Huffington Post Green section as irritation is expressed over the term "ClimateGate" as they wish it to be replaced by "SwiftHack":
Big news on the Climategate front. The chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Dr. Rajendra K. Pachauri, has issued a major response to the Climategate scandal. As a result a big rift has developed between the IPCC and a delegate to that organization on the topic of Climategate. This is big news, is it not? Does this not sound like a huge news story? Well, guess how many MSM reporters have covered this story? The answer as of this moment is one. ONE!
The sole reporter who went where the rest of the MSM dares not tread was Andrew Revkin, the New York Times environmental reporter, who covered this story in his Dot Earth blog. Revkin is hardly what one would call a global warming "denier" or skeptic but to give him credit he will report on breaking climate stories even if contradicts the prevailing MSM agenda on this topic. And his latest report covers both the IPCC chairman's response as well as the huge rift over Climategate that has now developed as resuult of that scandal:
Rajendra K. Pachauri, the chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, has distributed a statement on the unauthorized disclosure of thousands of e-mail messages and documents involving a variety of contributors to the panel’s reports. One e-mail message from July 8, 2004, particularly related to the workings of the climate panel, has been the subject of much discussion.
Oops! If the mainstream media was hoping that the Climategate scandal would be limited to the University of East Anglia's Climate Reasearch Unit (CRU) in Norwich, England, they are out of luck. This scandal has now reared its ugly head on the other side of the globe at New Zealand's National Institute of Water and Atmospheric research (NIWA) which is that nation's chief climate advisory unit.
Watts Up With That? reposting from New Zealand's TBR.cc Investigate magazine's breaking news forum explains this latest development in the widening Climategate scandal:
The scandal breaks as fears grow worldwide that corruption of climate science is not confined to just Britain’s CRU climate research centre.
In New Zealand’s case, the figures published on NIWA’s website suggest a strong warming trend in New Zealand over the past century.
Yesterday Brian Williams delivered an NBC Nightly News report about President Obama attending the Copenhagen global warming summit. Guess what hot topic was left untouched? If you had guessed Climategate you would have been correct. Not only Williams but also the other TV networks, with the exception of FOX News, have completely ignored what is considered to be the biggest scientific scandal in history. However, new Climategate revelations made by the Canada Free Press about a White House connection to the scandal will soon make it much more difficult (and ridiculous) for the networks to ignore.
Canada Free Press editor Judi McLeod and Canadian climatologist Dr. Tim Ball reveal the involvement of White House Science Czar John Holdren (photo) in the Climategate Scandal. The picture presented of Holdren is not a pretty one:
An hilariously bizarre situation is happening in the wake of the growing Climategate scandal. Many of the mainstream media stories about global warming are simply pretending it doesn't exist. Perhaps they feel that by ignoring Climategate entirely that it will just go away. Unfortunately for them, the readers of these global warming stories keep bringing up the inconvenient truth of Climategate by mentioning the scandal in the comments section over and over and over again.
An example is this Houston Chronicle editorial which asserts in its headline, "As a crucial climate change conference nears, more evidence of a warming globe." And as the editorial reveals its "evidence," note what is conspicuously missing although the readers will bring it up much to the embarrassment of the Chonicle:
Um...Let me guess. Nancy Franklin is somewhat less than enamored with Glenn Beck. In fact, she downright hates and despises him as you can see in her New Yorker article. Ironically Franklin accuses Beck of spreading venom in her incredibly venomous story which concludes by comparing him to the character of Lonesome Rhodes in the excellent 1957 film, A Face in the Crowd.
A few of the "love notes" tossed in Beck's direction:
Glenn Beck, the energetically hateful, truth-twisting radio and Fox News Channel talk-show host, was absent from the airwaves for a week...
The persona that Beck has cobbled together over the past few years combines a determination to draw attention to himself, because what he has to say is so important, with an outsized, in-your-face show of modesty...
Beck looks cherubic, with his boyish crewcut, his rubbery, expressive face, his wide eyes, and his seemingly innocent smile, but he has a wizened heart and a sulfurous outlook on American life and politics.
Pick out a pleasant outlook, Stick out that noble chin; Wipe off that "full of doubt" look, Slap on a happy grin! And spread sunshine all over the place, Just put on a happy face! Put on a happy face Put on a happy face!
It is a scene that has been played out quite a bit recently. A newspaper publisher delivers a grim announcement of yet more employee cutbacks in the newsroom. So how should the remaining employees react when asked about the cutbacks? According to the former publisher of the Palm Beach Post, the employees should simply put on a happy face and deliver the type of fake upbeat response that the same journalists wouldn't tolerate when investigating stories about corporate layoffs.
The Broward-Palm Beach New Times alternative newspaper sets the scene in a fascinating article about the rapid decline of the South Florida newspaper industry:
Once I built a railroad, I made it run, made it race against time. Once I built a railroad; now it's done. Brother, can you spare a dime? Once I built a tower, up to the sun, brick, and rivet, and lime; Once I built a tower, now it's done. Brother, can you spare a dime?
Forget about the Great Recession. Pay no heed to home foreclosures. Ignore double digit unemployment.
The stimulus package is working! That is thrust of a New York Times article written from the alternate economic universe. Here is the happy face appraisal of the stimulus package presented by Times writers Jackie Calmes and Michael Cooper who counter the criticism of that program with this gem:
But with roughly a quarter of the stimulus money out the door after nine months, the accumulation of hard data and real-life experience has allowed more dispassionate analysts to reach a consensus that the stimulus package, messy as it is, is working.
Let us give New York Times environmental writer Andrew Revkin credit. He is one of the few in the mainstream media reporting on the hacked global warming e-mails story which has gone viral in the blogosphere and was covered in-depth by NewsBusters' Noel Sheppard. If you aren't yet familiar with this brewing scandal then I recommend you get up to speed on this controversy by reading Sheppard's blog post.
Despite Revkin's commendable willingness to at least cover this controversy, he is still stubbornly clinging to his global warming belief...for now. Perhaps his stubbornness against veering away from the global warming doctrine is more a matter of inertia. After all, he has invested over 10 years of his life in that particular dogma and it is not easy to give it up overnight despite the shocking revelations of the e-mails. Here is Revkin's not very convincing money quote disclaimer:
The documents will undoubtedly raise questions about the quality of research on some specific questions and the actions of some scientists. But the evidence pointing to a growing human contribution to global warming is so broad and deep that the hacked material is unlikely to erode the overall argument.
A funny thing happened on the road to global warming. Mother Nature is simply not cooperating. Germany's Der Spiegel noted this "problem" for global warming alarmists yesterday:
Global warming appears to have stalled. Climatologists are puzzled as to why average global temperatures have stopped rising over the last 10 years. Some attribute the trend to a lack of sunspots, while others explain it through ocean currents.
...The Earth's average temperatures have stopped climbing since the beginning of the millennium, and it even looks as though global warming could come to a standstill this year.
Although many in the mainstream media write off the Democratic Underground as somewhat sanity challenged, they continue to praise the Daily Kos Kossacks as somehow being "reasonable progressives." The truth is that the Kossacks are every bit as loony as their DU cousins as you can see in this Daily Kos thread about what they hope will be the real outcome of the civilian trial of 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed. The conviction or acquittal of KSM is pretty much beside the point for most of the Kossacks. Their real hope for this trial is that they can use it as a weapon against what they call "BushCo." which is also the desire of many others on the left along with their MSM allies.
As you take the plunge into the depths of lunacy, keep in mind that many prominent people in both politics and the MSM continue to post at the Daily Kos. However, despite despite the clear Kossack derangement, we do need to thank them for being honest enough to post openly what many others are secretly thinking.
Americans will be reminded again of what the Bush administration's reckless, immoral and counterproductive pro-torture policies have meant both for those we have detained and for our ability to prosecute them for their alleged crimes.
Your humble correspondent has just returned from the Caribbean paradise of Culebra. Politics were far from my mind as I snorkled the Culebran reefs. However, on my way home, I picked up a copy of the Puerto Rico Daily Sun in the western outskirts of San Juan and a certain story by Robert Friedman of their Washington, D.C. bureau caught my eye because it had the word "rum" in the title: "Debate heats up in D.C. over rum rebate." As a lover of that delightful beverage, I naturally scanned the story which, much to my amusement, illustrated the state of Washington politics without exactly spelling out what the problem is.
So let us now join Robert Friedman as he lays out the situation in which Captain Morgan rum (one of my favorites) is planning to move its production from Puerto Rico to the U.S. Virgin Islands:
The three stateside Puerto Rican House members have escalated the billion-dollars battle over rum rebates with a letter to Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., indicating that the recent deal to move the production of Captain Morgan rum from Puerto Rico to the U.S. Virgin Islands could set the stage for corporate ripoffs of taxpayers.
Okay, that wasn't one of the lame excuses that CNN president Jon Klein came up with to explain away that network's drastic plunge in the ratings but the ones he did dream up were equally hilarious. Try this one on for size...their low ratings can be explained away because they don't run cartoons during slow periods. The CNN hilarious excuse entertainment was provided courtesy of this Matea Gold Los Angeles Times story which first listed the ratings woes facing that network:
...the network has lost much of the gains it made during the political boom time. CNN has drawn an average of 932,000 viewers in prime time this year, down 25% compared with the same point last year, according to Nielsen.
The trend has worsened as the year has progressed. In October, it recorded its smallest audience of the year, barely edging out its sister network HLN to avoid placing fourth in the key 25- to 54-year-old demographic in prime time. (Among total viewers, CNN still beat MSNBC across all programming, but placed a distant second to Fox News.)
...CNN is even feeling the slump on nights when it is expected to dominate. On Tuesday, it placed fourth with its election coverage, attracting just 826,000 viewers in prime time. Fox News had more than 4 million, while MSNBC drew 974,000 and HLN (which didn't cover the election) had 842,000.
The October unemployment rate has just been released and it has jumped to double digits at 10.2%, the worst rate since 1983. Just a little over half a point higher would make this the worst recession since the Great Depression. So how is the Associated Press reporting the growing unemployment numbers? "The economy is rebounding." I kid you not.
This AP report by Christopher S. Rugaber was published earlier this morning before the official unemployment rate was released. Notice how AP tries to cushion the blow by speculating that it would probably just rise to 9.9% for October:
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The economy is rebounding from its deepest slump since the 1930s, but it probably won't seem that way when the government releases its monthly employment report on Friday.
Employers aren't expected to start adding jobs for several more months. Many are skeptical about the strength and sustainability of the recovery,
The nation's economy probably lost a net total of 175,000 jobs in October, pushing the unemployment rate to 9.9 percent, according to a survey of Wall Street economists by Thomson Reuters. The Labor Department report is scheduled for release at 8:30 a.m. EST.
Most economists think the rate will eventually surpass 10 percent, a level last seen in June 1983.
The next time you read or hear a member of the mainstream media complaining about how much of the blogosphere engages in lurid sensationalism and is not to be taken seriously, then just point them today's New York Times column, Cellphones, Texts, and Lovers, written by house "conservative" David Brooks.
Yes, today is election day in several parts of the country but Brooks shuns any analysis of these races in favor of delving into the lurid world of cellphone sex from the pages of the Times opinion section which, with his column, reads more like something lifted from a sleazy sex periodical found at dented curbside machines or from web sex sites:
Since April 2007, New York magazine has posted online sex diaries. People send in personal accounts of their nighttime quests and conquests. Some of the diaries are unusual and sad. There’s a laid-off banker who drinks herself into oblivion and wakes up in the beds of unfamiliar men. There’s an African-American securities trader who flies around the country on weekends to meet with couples seeking interracial sex.
...the diarists “use their cellphones to disaggregate, slice up, and repackage their emotional and physical needs, servicing each with a different partner, and hoping to come out ahead.”
UPDATE: It appears that NJ.Com has pulled Jamie Duffy's incredibly juvenile "teabagger" story.
To read the way Jamie Duffy of NJ.Com gleefully tossed around the crude and childish term "teabaggers" seven times in a local story about a tea party in Morristown, New Jersey, you would think she was some snarky teenage intern who enjoyed using that vulgar pejorative. However, according to her profile, Duffy has been around a long time so she has no such excuse for her juvenile behavior in print:
Jamie Duffy is a social correspondent for The Star-Ledger and MorristownGreen.com. She lives in Morris County with her husband and two sons. She spent 10 years abroad, two in England and eight in France. She has a master's degree in journalism from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.
Congressman Earl Pomeroy (photo) of North Dakota, a supposed Blue Dog Democrat fiscal hawk, demonstrated his peculiar brand of "hawkishness" this week when he quickly announced his support of Nancy Pelosi's health care bill. Perhaps worried about the appearance of his less than stellar reputation on fiscal responsibility, Pomeroy issued this invitation to the North Dakota media:
** MEDIA ADVISORY **
Pomeroy to Hold Press Conference Call on House Health Care Reform Bill
Washington, DC - Congressman Earl Pomeroy will hold a press availability in Grand Forks and then a press conference call for media statewide this afternoon to discuss the details of the health care reform bill that was unveiled yesterday. All media are invited to participate. WHO: Congressman Earl Pomeroy
WHAT: Press availability and conference call on House health care reform bill
Markos Moulitsas, founder of the Daily Kos, has discovered that his endorsement can be political poison. Such was the case with his endorsement at the beginning of this month of the very liberal Republican candidate, Dede Scozzafava, in the New York 23rd CD special election:
Club for Growth darling Doug Hoffman is running on the Conservative Party line, and has even garnered the endorsement of Fred Thompson. The guy has legitimate traction, fueled by the fact that Dede Scozzafava, the Republican, is actually the most liberal candidate in the race. (Heck, she has run on the very liberal Working Families Party ballot line in the past.)
Sure, she is a Republican, and opposes the public option. But she's been willing to raise taxes when budgets require it, and is to the left of most Democrats on social issues (including supporting gay marriage). That's why conservatives are panicked about her -- for a party that is becoming more regional, more conservative, more ideologically rigid, Scozzafava's brand of moderate conservatism is grating. Hence, Hoffman has a real shot at not just playing spoiler and undermining the GOP candidate's chances, but also of potentially winning.
As a congresswoman, she could either move even more to the left to properly represent her progressive-trending district and be a pain in the side of the GOP caucus (they have nothing like our Blue Dogs), or Democrats can field a real Democrat to challenge her in 2010.
Hmm. So you would think that any recent news story about that race would have to at least include a mention of the Conservative challenger Doug Hoffman who has surged to the lead in a couple of recent polls as the Republican, Dede Scozzafava, plunged to last place. Well, in the world of the New York Daily News, Doug Hoffman doesn't even exist. At least not in this story yesterday by Elizabeth Benjamin. She writes The Daily Politics but her article appears to be The Daily Politics of an alternate universe in which the contest in the 23rd CD is strictly between Scozzafava and Democrat Bill Owens. Here is her story about New York governor David Paterson endorsing Owens and how this affects the campaigns of both the Democrat and Republican candidates but not a certain person whose candidacy dare not speak its name...at least not by Benjamin in this article:
Chris Cillizza at the Washington Post has written a story in his Morning Fix political news analysis that is sure to cause conniption fits over at the Daily Kos which endorsed "Republican" Dede Scozzafava in the New York 23rd CD race that has now grabbed the attention of the political world. The political news that Cillizza has reported looks great for Conservative Doug Hoffman, bad for Scozzafava, and very depressing for the Daily Kos (and Newt Gingrich):
The Iowa caucuses may be more than two years from now but a series of moves by potential Republican presidential contenders has turned a special election in New York's 23rd district into an early test of conservative bona fides.
In the last week three GOPers with an eye on 2012 -- former House speaker Newt Gingrich (Ga.), Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty and former Alaska governor Sarah Palin -- have weighed in on the race with Tpaw and Palin throwing their support behind Conservative Party candidate Doug Hoffman and Gingrich endorsing state Assemblywoman Dede Scozzafava.
(Polling and conversations with those close to the contest on both sides suggest it is now a two-person race between Hoffman and Democrat Bill Owens with Scozzafava fading badly.)
Just from the title of today's Huffington Post cover story, Leaderless: Senate Pushes For Public Option Without Obama's Support, you can see that they have pretty much given up on counting on Barack Obama demonstrating leadership in the fight to pass ObamaCare. Here are Huffington Post correspondents Sam Stein and Ryan Grim registering their disgust with Obama in a grim story:
President Barack Obama is actively discouraging Senate Democrats in their effort to include a public insurance option with a state opt-out clause as part of health care reform. In its place, say multiple Democratic sources, Obama has indicated a preference for an alternative policy, favored by the insurance industry, which would see a public plan "triggered" into effect in the future by a failure of the industry to meet certain benchmarks.
The administration retreat runs counter to the letter and the spirit of Obama's presidential campaign. The man who ran on the "Audacity of Hope" has now taken a more conservative stand than Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), leaving progressives with a mix of confusion and outrage. Democratic leaders on Capitol Hill have battled conservatives in their own party in an effort to get the 60 votes needed to overcome a filibuster. Now tantalizingly close, they are calling for Obama to step up.
So who are they hoping will be their hero to save the day? Since it's not Obama, they are now placing their hopes upon Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid who is actually more like Al Capp's gloomy figure of Joe Btfsplk, who carries his bad luck with him as a perpetual raincloud over his head (illustration below the fold), than Mighty Mouse.
This is a Politico congressional race story that should have been labeled "WARNING: Read this story with a huge grain of salt." Why? First of all because the poll of the New York 23rd Congressional District was mostly taken before the big events of this past week were well known there. And even more importantly, the source of the poll was the Daily Kos which endorsed the very liberal Republican in the race, Dede Scozzafava. However, before we go into how absurd this poll was, let us watch Josh Kraushaar of Politico get all breathless about this highly questionable story:
The Daily Kos/Research 2000 poll provides some encouraging news for Scozzafava, who remains in second place – and within striking distance of Owens – despite a week of bad publicity. It shows her leading Hoffman among Republican voters, 46 to 27 percent.
"Jon Corzine is the kindest, bravest, warmest, most wonderful human being I've ever known in my life."
Okay, Jonathan Tamari didn't use those exact words when he wrote an incredibly fawning Philadelphia Inquirer article about Governor Jon Corzine of New Jersey who is running for re-election but the words he did use sure come close to that sentiment. See, Corzine's problems weren't really because he presided over a massive budget deficit.The real problem was his difficulty in proper communication...at least according to Tamari:
In his formal introduction to Trenton, his inaugural speech, Corzine read from notes, barely looking up, absorbed in his own message. Problems with communicating would come to plague his term in office.
There is currently a huge corruption scandal involving public officials in Broward County Florida that is being investigated by the FBI. The local Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel newspaper, which has been dragging its feet until recently on reporting this scandal, has finally gotten around to criticizing someone involved in the scandal investigation...the informant who helped break the case. I kid you not.
First let us look at the background on the Sun-Sentinel's reluctance to do what it is supposed to do, namely investigating local corruption. The reporter who has actually been writing about the breaking scandals in depth for weeks doesn't even work for the Sun-Sentinel. He is Bob Norman of the Broward Palm Beach New Times free newspaper who describes the Sun-Sentinel foot-dragging in his Daily Pulp blog:
One of the great joys of watching the greatest corruption story in Broward County history begin to unfold during this past month has been watching the Sun-Sentinel play catch-up.
...The Sentinel, you have to understand, is what I call an "official" newspaper. In general, it listens to local bigwigs and does what it's told, paying short shrift to those who would challenge those same officials. Yes, it's the exact opposite of what a good newspaper is supposed to do, but it paid the bills for years and years.
"Hello, 911? This is the Dede Scozzafava campaign. Could you send a police car over to the Elks Lodge? There is a reporter here asking our candidate uncomfortable questions. Thank you."
Something like this call went out last night when a reporter committed the "high crime" of asking Republican congressional candidate, Dede Scozzafava (endorsed by the Daily Kos), questions that she obviously felt very uneasy about answering. Scozzafava, who was recently the subject of an Open Thread here on NewsBusters, is running in the special election for the open seat in the NY 23rd congressional district. She was being questioned last night by John McCormack of the Weekly Standard when the police were called with a complaint about him for making Scozzafava uncomfortable with his probing questions. Here is how McCormack describes the scene:
Lowville, N.Y. Tonight, Dede Scozzafava, the Republican candidate for the November 3 special election in the 23rd congressional district, spoke to about 100 Republicans at the Lewis County GOP dinner at the Elks Lodge 1605. After a dinner of turkey, mashed potatoes, and stuffing, Scozzafava fended off criticism that she wasn't as conservative as third-party candidate Doug Hoffman and urged her supporters to vote for her in order to keep her Democratic opponent Bill Owens from serving as a rubber stamp for Nancy Pelosi and Barack Obama's agenda in Washington. It was a fairly typical evening--until the speech ended and someone with Scozzafava's campaign called the police. On me.