It wasn't that long ago that the left considered this November's election a mere formality on the road to Barack Obama's coronation as president. They loved posting poll after poll showing Obama winning by huge margins. Oh, how they gloated about the massive loss John McCain was sure to suffer. Well, the polls have changed and now the latest USA Today/Gallup poll shows quite a different result:
WASHINGTON — The Republican National Convention has given John McCain and his party a significant boost, a USA TODAY/Gallup Poll taken over the weekend shows, as running mate Sarah Palin helps close an "enthusiasm gap" that has dogged the GOP all year.
McCain leads Democrat Barack Obama by 50%-46% among registered voters, the Republican's biggest advantage since January and a turnaround from the USA TODAY poll taken just before the convention opened in St. Paul. Then, he lagged by 7 percentage points.
The convention bounce has helped not only McCain but also attitudes toward Republican congressional candidates and the GOP in general.
Your humble correspondent would like to thank Huffington Post blogger, Benjamin R. Barber, for giving him a hearty bellylaugh this morning for conjuring up the image of a traumatized Barack Obama getting "moosed" by Sarah Palin. However, on the way to delivering that comedy line, Barber, who is described in his HuffPo bio as a "democratic theorist" who authored a book (ranked #254,970 on Amazon) with the long winded title of "Consumed: How Markets Corrupt Children, Infantilize Adults, and Swallow Citizens Whole," provides us with a bunch of other laughs in his blog (emphasis mine):
It seems forever since the Democrats completed their triumphant Convention in Denver with its Obama/Biden/Clinton/Kennedy unity ticket and its intoxicating sense of take-it-to-the-finish line momentum. What happened? Not Sarah Palin. How could a small-time Alaska mayor and first term Governor derail the Obama freight train? No it was not Sarah Palin but the extraordinary reaction to McCain's wildly irresponsible decision to make her his running mate that seems to have paralyzed the Party.
When your humble correspondent first watched Sarah Palin introduced to the public by John McCain as his vice-presidential pick, he had an eerie sense of familiarity. Yes, I couldn't quite recall why Sarah Palin looked so familiar until my DUmmie FUnnies co-host, Charles Henrickson, pointed out the astounding likeness between Palin and Diana Prince/Wonder Woman. It was an "aha!" moment. Suddenly I knew why Palin seemed so familiar. She looks just like Wonder Woman in her secret identity as Diana Prince. And it turns out that Henrickson wasn't the only one making that connection. Both in the media and in the blogosphere, comparisons are being made between Sarah Palin and Wonder Woman.
What a difference a few hours make. It is almost like Sally Quinn, the Washington Post faith columnist, was blinded by the light of truth on the road to Damascus. On CNN's "American Morning" on Friday, Quinn repeated her doubts as to whether Sarah Palin could "put country first" due to her family reponsibilities as a mother:
Everyone woman I know practically is a working mother. We have conflicts and guilts that men simply don't have. And, basically the burden of raising children falls on the mother, no matter what kind of a job she has. So, I think that to, you know, we're so far beyond the feminist argument here. This is not about feminism, it's not about sexism, it's simply about can you do the job?
Does the liberal senior editor of State, Dahlia Lithwick, secretly want the Democrat ticket to lose this year? You have to come to that conclusion when you read the complex mosaic of debate "tips" that she provides to Joe Biden including, get this, imitate the perpetually annoying Campbell Brown. This is just one part of an array of tips Lithwick provides in a Slate article condescendingly titled, "How To Debate a Girl, and Win." Lithwick starts out by sneering at Sarah Palin (emphasis mine):
How embarrassing is it for a newspaper to have a member of a presidential ticket campaigning in its own backyard and to completely miss something he said that has reverberated all over the Web? Such was the case on Tuesday when vice-presidential candidate Joe Biden was campaigning in Deerfield Beach. Amid all the standard Democrat talking points presented by Biden, there was this shocker made in response to a questioner with obvious BDS (Bush Derangement Syndrome) asking about pursuing the Bush administration with criminal investigations:
If there has been a basis upon which you can pursue someone for a criminal violation, they will be pursued. Not out of vengeance, not out of retribution, out of the need to preserve the notion that no one, no one, no attorney general, no president -- no one is above the law.
With the massive and desperate MSM attack upon Sarah Palin, there is a lot of competition in the venom spewing department. However, Baltimore Sun columnist Susan Reimer seems determined to make a strong bid for the most seriously deranged of all attacks upon Palin in her most recent column which starts out on her assumption that the Alaska governor is unqualified:
So. This is what being pandered to feels like.
John McCain picked Sarah Palin, governor of Alaska and mother of five, to be his running mate to woo women like me.
He seems to think that my girlfriends and I are so disappointed that an utterly qualified woman is not going to be president that we will jump at the chance to vote for an utterly unqualified woman for vice president.
So does that mean Reimer thinks Barack Obama, with no executive experience and a less than stellar incomplete Senate term is also "unqualified?" She doesn't say as Reimer warms up for more attacks upon Palin:
Your humble correspondent is thinking of writing a story about Democrat voters who are insulted by vice-presidential nominee, Joe Biden. And I think I know just the place to find such Democrat voters---at a John McCain rally in Ohio. Just to save time and effort, I'm not even going to find out if the people I interview are even Democrats so I won't specifically identify them as such even though the headline for my story will read, "Joe Biden excites, insults swing-state Democrat voters."
Does that sound ridiculous to you? Well, guess what? That is exactly what New York Daily News staff writers, Michael McCauliff and Celeste Katz, did in reverse with their article, "Sarah Palin excites, insults swing-state Republican voters." I guess the crack investigative team of McCauliff and Katz figured that the best place to find Republican voters would be at an Obama rally (emphasis mine):
The theme of this Time magazine article by Jay Newton-Small, "Obama and Biden's Chemistry Test," is how wonderful the "chemistry" is between Barack Obama and his running mate, Joe Biden. However, when you read the details of the story, you can't help but wonder if there is already trouble brewing between the two. In fact, the Time story starts out on a downbeat note (emphasis mine):
On Saturday morning Barack Obama and his newly-minted running mate Joe Biden stopped at a diner outside of Youngstown, Ohio for some breakfast. Obama made a few brief comments to the press about Hurricane Gustav's imminent threat before turning to greet diners. Five minutes later, it was Biden's turn to be asked about the gathering storm. His answer was three times as long as Obama's, and included details of his daughter's time at Tulane University in New Orleans. As he kept talking Obama, about 10 feet away, kept glancing over at Biden. For an awkward 20 seconds or so, the Democratic nominee looked a little concerned about Biden's soliloquy. But soon enough, he left Biden alone, turning towards the door to chat with other patrons.
First we had a former national chairman of the Democratic National Committee laughing over the effect of Hurricane Gustav hitting New Orleans would have on Republicans as they prepared to hold their convention this week. Now we have a writer for The New Republic, Nate Silver, worried in the other direction in an article titled, "How Gustav Could Benefit the Republicans." Silver lists the ways he perceives that Republicans could benefit from this storm:
1. Allows McCain to Appear Magnanimous. By potentially delaying or canceling his "date" at the GOP convention, McCain appears as though he is giving something up to tend to the Gulf Coast. Sympathetic and neutral-to-sympathetic media outlets may view this as underscoring McCain's "America First" theme.
An angry Senator John Kerry is also an entertaining John Kerry. And on ABC's This Week yesterday, Kerry provided us with a lot of comedy entertainment including his assertion that John McCain was forced to pick Sarah Palin as his running mate by Rush Limbaugh and "the rightwing." There are a lot of other comedy nuggets in this interview conducted by This Week host George Stephanopoulos who fails to challenge Kerry on most of his absurdities including the notion that that merely traveling though countries overseas on a brief campaign stint counts as foreign policy experience. The transcript is below but to fully enjoy the flavor, you need to see the video featuring a clearly perturbed John Kerry who seems not to have gotten over his 2004 election loss. The interview begins following an appearance by Senator Lindsey Graham and Kerry sounds a bit confused (emphasis mine):
If you are wondering why the stories in your local newspapers are starting to look so similar to other newspapers, it might be because they are following the new business model of South Florida newspapers: eliminating competition. All the major South Florida newspapers, Miami Herald, Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel (now called SunSentinel), and Palm Beach Post have had big staff cutbacks recently. So who is left to cover the news? The skeleton crews still working at the newspapers don't have the capability so they came up with a solution: pool their resources and share their stories. A story in Friday's Sun-Sentinel, I mean SunSentinel, explains the brave new world of journalism (emphasis mine):
The San Jose Mercury News, in an editorial today, called Sarah Palin "clearly unqualified" to become vice-president. The reason? Lack of experience. Suddenly liberal members of the media, such as Campbell Brown, until now not the least bit worried about Barack Obama's lack of experience are concerned about this issue. So how to explain away Obama's own lack of experience? Simple. The Mercury News has broadened the definition of experience to include the experience of running for higher office. You read that right. Barack Obama is now qualified to run for president because he has the "experience" of campaigning for nomination. We'll get to that new definition of experience but first let us visit the lead in of this editorial which sounded a bit peeved that John McCain's Palin pick stole the thunder from the Democrat convention (emphasis mine):
Joe Biden has been making much of having spent the first ten years of his life in Scranton, Pennsylvania to the extent that his first video ad is based on that city. So when Biden and Barack Obama made their first campaign appearance after the Democrat convention in Beaver, Pennsylvania, the subject of Scranton came up in Biden's speech. The problem is that he did some fibbing about Scranton. Biden claimed that he was 12 years younger than former PA governor, Bob Casey, and 12 years older than "Bobby" Casey, the son and current senator from that state. Actually Biden is only 10 years younger than the elder Casey, a minor error, but eighteen years older than "Bobby" Casey, not so minor. Even more important, Biden mentioned that he lived only a few blocks away from the Caseys.
Can anybody recall Campbell Brown pestering Democrat officials over Barack Obama's lack of not only foreign policy experience but overall experience? I sure can't but here is Brown hectoring McCain Political Director Mike Duhaime about her sudden concern over lack of experience. Here is a transcript of the interrogation but to get the full flavor of Brown's attitude complete with cynical facial expressions, be sure to watch the video (emphasis mine):
In an effort to run down Governor Sarah Palin of Alaska, a snarling Jack Cafferty managed to insult the entire state of Alaska on CNN's Situation Room: "Sarah Palin is in her first term as governor of Alaska, that's a state that has 13 people and some caribou." This was one small part of an acid-laced harangue by Cafferty on the subject of Sarah Palin, (emphasis mine):
What a difference a few weeks make. It wasn't too long ago that the liberal media were already congratulating themselves on Barack Obama's "inevitable" victory. Many of those reports crossed the line into flat out gloating in which the election itself was a mere formality on the road to the coronation of the Lightworker. Well, that was then and now it appears that Obama's halo of perfection has become quite tarnished to the extent that the liberal New Republic is worrying if their erstwhile messiah is heading towards a "long, disappointing fall." John B. Judis, a senior editor of The New Republic, bites his fingernails with a revealing article titled, "Avoiding A Long, Disappointing Fall." Dr. Judis gives his diagnosis along with suggestions for a cure as to what is ailing the Obama campaign (emphasis mine):
What do you do when you are the mayor of San Francisco and your poorly timed push for gay marriages is blamed for your party's loss in a presidential election, you get yourself involved in a sleazy sex scandal where you get caught sleeping with the wife of your campaign manager, and a much criticized policy of declaring the municipality you represent a "sanctuary city" results in a multiple murder by an illegal alien? Why you get the San Francisco Chronicle to write a glowing story about you enthusing about how you are a "hotshot to watch" with a bright political future on the horizon. Such is the case with San Francisco mayor Gavin Newsom, no stranger to other puff pieces such as this June story in Time magazine. San Francisco Chronicle political writers Joe Garofoli and Carla Marinucci use Newsom's appearance at the Democrat convention in San Francisco as a launch platform for gushing over their mayor's future:
As Bill Clinton and Joe Biden dominated center stage Wednesday night at the Democratic National Convention, San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom was presiding over "Unconventional '08," a street party held in an artsy warehouse corner of the city featuring indie bands and a knot of people young enough to be Biden's grandchildren. There, mingling beneath an art gallery facade full of iconic images of Sen. Barack Obama was the evening's host - the former Sen. Hillary Clinton delegate Newsom.
Before pouring sweet syrup over Newsom, Garofoli and Marinucci take us along on a brief but unpleasant trip down memory lane:
Spike Lee seems intent on inadvertently subverting Barack Obama's campaign. As we saw previously, Spike Lee suggested that rappers could be an important campaign asset for Obama. And now in an interview with an MSNBC reporter, Lee asserts that history can be divided into two epochs. Here is a transcript (emphasis mine):
REPORTER: I'm joined now by Spike Lee who we found on the floor of the Democratic convention. First of all, it's such a key...
SPIKE LEE: Amongst the Indiana delegates...
REPORTER: And Florida too. Powerful delegations.
LEE: (garbled) Florida and Indiana. That's all right.
I guess the Associated Press decided it was too much trouble to put up even the pretense of objectivity in the election campaign. As a result, AP completely cast any idea of objectivity to the winds and flat out offered helpful campaign tips to Barack Obama in the form of suggestions from five of their reporters:
DENVER - There's no shortage of items on Barack Obama's to-do list for the fall campaign. How about a to-don't list? Five AP reporters offer suggestions.
How nice of AP to offer such help. And now the to-don't suggestions from the first of their reporters, Ted Anthony:
No matter what, Barack Obama should never lose sight of the color gray.
It appears that Keith Olbermann might be vying for the title of Most Obnoxious Anchor On Television. First we had Olbermann dissing Joe Scarborough during a live broadcast on Monday from the Democrat convention. Then a day later, Olbermann managed to enrage Chris Matthews during another broadcast. And now it looks like Olbermann is going for broke in the insult department by pushing to have Tom Brokaw banned from appearing on MSNBC as reported in Page Six of today's New York Post:
At a forum on Sunday, when Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell called MSNBC "the official network of the Obama campaign," Brokaw said, "I think Keith has gone too far. I think Chris has gone too far."
Insiders say Olbermann is pushing to have Brokaw banned from the network and is also refusing to have centrist Time magazine columnist Mike Murphy on his show.
Film producer Spike Lee believes Barack Obama has a secret weapon that will be a big asset to his campaign: rappers. Yes, in Spike Lee's opinion hip-hop music will be a key element in getting Obama elected. Lee expounded upon the importance of hip-hoppers in this election in the New York Times The Caucus:
Mr. Lee, who has often uses hip-hop music and casts hip-hop stars in his films, said that rappers should, well, feel free to mince their too-hot words at such a crucial time in American politics.
Of course, allowing hip-hoppers to play a part in a political campaign is fraught with danger:
In particular, the platinum-selling artist Ludacris referred to Senator Clinton as an “irrelevant” epithet and attacked Senator John McCain with the line, “Paint the White House black and I’m sure that’s got ’em terrified/ McCain don’t belong in any chair unless he’s paralyzed.”
For good measure, he referred to President Bush as “mentally handicapped.”
Keith Olbermann seems to be suffering from a bad case of foot-in-mouth disease during the Democrat convention coverage. As noted earlier by NewsBusters' Mark Finkelstein, Olbermann, after commenting ecstatically about Michelle Obama's speech declared that he was "beginning to sound borderline sycophantic."
Also last night, an open mic caught Olbermann dissing fellow MSNBC team member, Joe Scarborough using profanity to describe his apparent disgust with Scarborough's analysis that Barack Obama has been falling behind in the polls.
"Jesus, Joe, why don't you get a shovel?" Olbermann snorted. Watch the video to the right or read the partial transcript below:
In yet another example of why more and more people are turning to the Web for their news, the DBKP blog has just uncovered information that the John Edwards campaign has been refunding campaign contributions even before billionaire Warren Buffett suggested that Edwards could be hit with a class action lawsuit. And can you guess which of the two of Edwards' Americas got the majority of the refunds? DBKP explains:
The Edwards ‘08 Campaign for President has quietly refunded almost $4 million to individual contributors, a number of them, bundlers and big backers. This should be news to Warren Buffet who recently mused that Edwards’ supporters should get together and file a class action suit. It seems another “class” has already had their contributions refunded–and it’s not the “grassroots” little guys.
It's hard to dislike political consultant Bob Shrum. Because of the Shrum Curse, he is exactly 0 for 8 in getting the presidential candidates he worked for elected starting with George McGovern in 1972 and most recently John Kerry in 2004. And because all of the candidates he worked for have been Democrats, that is why he is so well liked by Republicans because of his reputation as the Eddie Mush of presidential campaigns.
In case you are unfamiliar with Eddie Mush, he was the character in the movie "A Bronx Tale" who was a total jinx. He had a perfect track record of losing every bet he ever placed as well as jinxing everyone around him. That pretty much describes Bob Shrum so it must have been painful for Shrum to answer this reader's question in the UK Independent: "Would you give up your other victories to have gotten one Democratic president elected?" You can tell that Shrum was a bit irked in his reply:
Now that Barack Obama has chosen Joe Biden to be his running mate, it will be interesting to see how some journalists will distance themselves from their own scathing opinions of Biden in the past. One such case is that of Jonathan Chait, The New Republic editor, who was very downbeat on Biden in a Los Angeles Times article published on February 4, 2007. Of course, back then it was "safe" to be honest about Joe Biden since it looked like his presidential bid was going nowhere. The very title of Chait's article, "Joe Biden’s just a barrel of gaffes," explains the problems the Obama campaign is going to have with the new vice-presidential pick. Back then Chait was very blunt about Biden's problems as a candidate:
...Biden’s charming cluelessness was on display in a recent ABC news interview. The famously verbose senator was asked to state in 25 words or less why Democrats should nominate him. His response was 45 words. I suppose that, by Biden’s standards, coming in at just under twice his allotted length counts as a victory of sorts.
The liberals have already come up with their excuse for why Barack Obama might lose the election in November. It wouldn't be because of his inexperience, poor judgement, or far left political views. No, the real reason according to Slate's Jacob Weisberg is racism.
The proposition is put in the title of his article, "If Obama Loses," with his answer given in the subtitle, "Racism is the Only Reason McCain Might Beat Him."
And, of course, Obama's recent poll plunge can only be attributed to you-know-what:
Imagine if a prominent Mitt Romney supporter who was a former Deputy Attorney General of Pennsylvania as well as former Republican Party chair in Montgomery County in that state had filed a lawsuit against John McCain questioning his eligibility to become president. How many milliseconds after the filing of that lawsuit do you think it would take for that news to be prominently featured on the New York Times website as well as the many other MSM websites?
When I first read Seth Grahame-Smith's July 1 blog in the Huffington Post I had a nice chuckle starting with the title, "All of McCain's Base Belongs to Us; Why It Won't Even Be Close." Grahame-Smith's over the top confidence in the certainty of Barack Obama's election victory was so gloatingly bold as to be quite hilarious in its assertions (emphasis mine):
It's mathematically impossible for John McCain to win.
Were the great Tim Russert still with us, he would call the election for Obama at 7pm Eastern time. No, I'm not talking about November 4th -- I mean tonight.
Yup! It was all over as of July 1. However, Grahame-Smith was only getting warmed up:
Can anybody out there figure out whom "undecided" Miami Herald columnist Myriam Marquez will ultimately vote for in the November election? Gee. It is really tough to figure it out but perhaps we can investigate a few elusive clues starting with the title of her column, "McCain must move past old Bush mantra." Hmm... Not enough information there. Perhaps we can discover Marquez's preference by analyzing her column which discusses the appearences of both candidates at the VFW convention in Orlando. First the money quote from Ms Marquez:
Still on the fence, like so many other undecided Americans, I'm hoping to see McCain move beyond the old Bush mantra of ''you're either with us or against us'' and patch this blue-state and red-state quilt into one proud nation again.
Ooh! She's on the fence and undecided. Right now, after viewing that Bush slam and the title, I still have absolutely no idea whom Marquez will vote for. Let us first investigate what she had to say about John McCain:
I've always liked McCain's independent style, but the statesman seems to have morphed into an intransigent mini-Bush.