Thank You, William Kristol!

A few interesting revelations on the poli-blogs today after the third and final trouncing of John McCrankypants in the debates. One is this Glenn Greenwald interview with Scott Horton, lawyer, professor, and writer for Harper’s.

Ever wondered who came up with the now stizoopid choice to push Sarah Palin as the VP? Turns out it was William “The Bloody” Kristol.

And the interesting thing is of course, if we look across the whole horizon of conservative columnists, prominent conservative columnists, pretty much all of them are expressing reservations or concerns or they’re outright opposing Palin as a pick, with one really striking exception, and that’s Bill Kristol. And Bill Kristol, in none of his columns has acknowledged that he in a sense is the author of Sarah Palin. He discovered her, he promoted her, and he pushed her through to the vice-presidential nomination.

Because, when you are looking for important advice, you want to turn to a political hack and insider who’s been consistently wrong for eight years on almost everything. And now look where they are! Bwaaahahaha!!

The other news
is the unraveling of “uncommitted voter Joe the Plumber” from the debate. It didn’t take too long to find out lots of interesting things, like his unpaid tax problems, but this is the best nugget so far:

Turns out that Joe Wurzelbacher from the Toledo event is a close relative of Robert Wurzelbacher of Milford, Ohio. Who’s Robert Wurzelbacher? Only Charles Keating’s son-in-law and the former senior vice president of American Continental, the parent company of the infamous Lincoln Savings and Loan. The now retired elder Wurzelbacher is also a major contributor to Republican causes giving well over $10,000 in the last few years.

Bwaaaahahahaha!! Can the Republicans do one single thing that isn’t cynical and transparently false?

I phonebanked for Obama today…


This last week I spent waaaaaaay too much time reading the political blogs and getting depressed. So I decided to take that negative energy and put out some positive energy by volunteering for the Obama campaign. I came home today and wrote a diary for Daily Kos, which I am cross posting here:

Phonebankers need Kossacks’ help!
Sun Sep 14, 2008 at 05:10:15 PM PDT
Hi there,
Hopefully there’s room on Kos for another phonebanking/volunteering story today,
as I’d like to offer some suggestions and a call for help from everybody.
I’m trying to write this and not sound critical and nit-picking. And as this is my experience in one HQ in my city, I have no idea about organizational matters elsewhere.
So let’s start here: I assumed a few things about my local Obama office. I assumed that everybody is quite tech savvy. I assumed that because phone banking is a big part of GOTV, then the phone banking kit would be jammed full with facts and figures.
Ok, so I assumed wrong. There’s a script. There’s also a sheet on the issues, but it’s not easily digestible. Now, everybody in the office was very friendly and helpful, but I soon found I was lacking a lot of materials.
A few calls in I got a “leaning McCain” voter who saw Obama as someone who was going to raise his taxes. (“I’m what you’d call a rich guy,” he said.) I soooo wish I had that tax-plan breakdown graphic that was in the Washington Post, because this man may not have been “rich” according to the McCain plan. Nuts!
Another lady was interested in voting for Obama, but didn’t know how to register. I suddenly realized that I had no sheet on how to register to vote…I knew a few places (DMV, etc.), but I wanted a sheet with specific locations and such. As our Obama office is calling people in Nevada (Clark County), I realized I had no local info.
My favorite call today was to a 37 year old lady who had just come back from Iraq. She was so enthusiastic about Obama that she wanted to volunteer, but…she didn’t know her city too well. Where was the Obama HQ? Well, er, that was more info I didn’t have!!! Fortunately, she was a dear and held on while I raced upstairs and jumped on the net to find the addresses of the HQ. (And my complaint about the Obama site is that this info is hard to find. I went to Google maps instead.)
Of course, I shared this info with the people in charge at the office, and they were very ready to include these sheets in their phone banking packs. When I got the voter registration info (off the net, again), I made copies and gave them to all the other phone bankers.
But while driving home, I was wondering…is this the first time in the whole GOTV Nevada period that this has come up at my local office? Shouldn’t this be basic knowledge?
So, as I said, I’m not trying to be negative. My point is to all of us here at Daily Kos: if you know your stuff, if you have good info charts and visuals, if you have an idea about how to help the average phone banker–who may not be a natural speaker and/or debator, who does not have photographic memory–head down to your local Obama office and donate your intelligence!! DO NOT assume that they have everything they need. Often the staffing is very, very limited and they’ve got a lot more on their minds.
PHONE BANKING SUMMARY: 90% wrong numbers/out of service/answering machines. (We were told not to leave messages, because a later return call might get a person, which is better). I had a lot of people hang up on me (Dems, Reps, Independents alike!). No Dems were thinking about McCain, but about 1/3 of the registered Republicans were leaning or thinking of Obama. Issues? Taxes, education, change. (Does anyone have a good graphic explaining Obama’s education plan? Or one vs. McCain’s? Does McCain have an education plan anyway???)

Worst. Job Interview. Ever.

So Sarah “Failin'” Palin appeared in front of Charlie Gibson to answer some questions on ABC tonight. It’s painful. She had no idea what the Bush Doctrine is…I know what it is. My bleedin’ mom knows what it is! How can she not?
Look at that panic in her eyes for a second or two and then the bluff: “In what respect, Charlie?” She might as well have said, “Can you use it in a sentence?”
The whole set-up looks like a job interview, which, in a way, it is. And look at her body language in this clip…the lack of confidence, the secretive, hunched-over look.
And don’t get me started on the “war with Russia” crap. Christ, this woman is dangerous as well as ill-prepared. In her own words, “Thinks, but no thinks!”
P.S.: I was talking with my mom today and she said this: “There’s something about Sarah Palin that seems old fashioned and I couldn’t put my finger on it. But then last night I realized what it was: she has Priscilla Presley hair.” That’s my mom, providing biting commentary beyond that of the mainstream media.

God Ditches the GOP

A nice little opinion piece by Mark Morford in sfgate.com:

But here’s the saddest part of all: Governor Palin knew. She absolutely had to realize that her daughter’s unfortunate condition would come to light when McCain offered her this bizarre gig. To which we can only say: Way to shove your own daughter under the wheels of the GOP Machine, Governor Palin. Ultimate sacrifice indeed.
Ah, but perhaps it’s all a bit too much. Perhaps you think this perspective is just too negative, ugly, far too similar to how the right itself operates, full of low-vibration energy and fear and abhorrence of the Other, all topped by a cheerless belief in a cruel, micromanaging God who is so petty and small as to actually care about who you love, or how you vote, or what kind of sex you enjoy. Let me say this: I agree completely.

Yep, kinda sums them up.

Meanwhile, Obama continues on

Forget for a minute the 24/7 news reports about the bottomless coffee cup of scandal and lies that have followed since McSame chose Palin as his running mate. Anti-choice (except when it’s her daughter), anti-gay, pro-book banning, separitist, Dominionist, Big Oil loving…dingleberry that she is.
Meanwhile, Obama just gave another brilliant speech about unions and our role in looking after one another. We are our brother and sisters’ keepers.
It’s a 12 minute speech. Put some time aside.

Oh Gustav, what have you wrought?


Here’s a PR image of whatsisface trying to look all prezidenchl when it was clear that Gustav was on its way towards New Orleans, just in time to kick off the GOP National Convention. What a way to remind everybody of the GOP’s second biggest disaster.
So now they’ve been panicking. What should Bush do? Should he pretend to care this time? Should he go to St. Paul to speak in front of the faithful? Should he hold off and do some work other than clearing brush?
And what should the old man and his trophy running mate do? Well, they went down to Pearl, Mississippi to look all concerned and stuff. But as they have no ability to do anything–McCain is not in charge of FEMA–this was pure PR crap.
A disaster for the plebs is always a golden opportunity for a photo! Yay!

What a president should look like


Went down to Stateside (a Santa Barbara restaurant/club) to watch Obama’s acceptance speech in the company of his supporters and other cool people. (Although most cool people were at the Radiohead concert at the Bowl!!) At one point the cable feed went out from Cox cable, which made everybody suspicious. We ended up the night with an HD feed from CNN, but with an audio feed the sound guy jacked from BBC Radio international, meaning audio and video did not sync up! Still the speech was the rousing park-knocker-outer we’ve been hoping for. My favorite part:

It’s not because John McCain doesn’t care. It’s because John McCain doesn’t get it.
For over two decades, he’s subscribed to that old, discredited Republican philosophy – give more and more to those with the most and hope that prosperity trickles down to everyone else. In Washington, they call this the Ownership Society, but what it really means is – you’re on your own. Out of work? Tough luck. No health care? The market will fix it. Born into poverty? Pull yourself up by your own bootstraps – even if you don’t have boots. You’re on your own.
Well it’s time for them to own their failure. It’s time for us to change America.

I’ve been saying this all along. They don’t care. I even corrected my friend Bob Potter (hi Bob! Thanks for the beer!) who is off next month to volunteer for the Obama campaign in Nevada when he called the GOP’s handling of New Orleans incompetent.
“Bob, incompetent means somebody who’s trying to do their job but fails because of lack of skill or ability. In fact the GOP did their job well, because their job after Katrina was to not give a shit.”
These rich oligarchal bastards could give a tinker’s cuss not only whether you have a job or health care, but whether you live or die. Who cares, right? What’s it to them?
So to hear Obama articulate that and then hang the big FAIL sign on the Repubs, oh what a beautiful thing.
In the meantime, here’s what I missed…

McCain wasn’t tortured…

This may be one of the few times I’ve blogged Andrew Sullivan, but his logic here is sound:

In all the discussion of John McCain’s recently recovered memory of a religious epiphany in Vietnam, one thing has been missing. The torture that was deployed against McCain emerges in all the various accounts. It involved sleep deprivation, the withholding of medical treatment, stress positions, long-time standing, and beating. Sound familiar?
According to the Bush administration’s definition of torture, McCain was therefore not tortured.
Cheney denies that McCain was tortured; as does Bush. So do John Yoo and David Addington and George Tenet. In the one indisputably authentic version of the story of a Vietnamese guard showing compassion, McCain talks of the agony of long-time standing. A quarter century later, Don Rumsfeld was putting his signature to memos lengthening the agony of “long-time standing” that victims of Bush’s torture regime would have to endure. These torture techniques are, according to the president of the United States, merely “enhanced interrogation.”

Who will have the nutsack to ask McCain this question to his face?

How the Democrats Can Blow It…in Six Easy Steps


I learned the phrase “snatching defeat from the jaws of victory,” from watching years of Epic Democrat Fail. Michael Moore weighs in a has a few pertinent things to say:

4. Forget that this was a historic year for women.
Obama should be making a speech about gender like the brilliant one he gave on race back in March. Millions of people, especially women, had high hopes for the candidacy of Hillary Clinton. Attention must be paid. And you don’t pay attention to it by having your advisers run your wife through the makeover machine, trying to soften her up and pipe her down. Michelle Obama has been one of the most refreshing things about this election year. But within weeks of the end of the primary season, the handlers stepped in to deal with the “Michelle problem.”

What problem? She speaks her mind? She wears what she wants? Her biggest sin, according to the punditocracy, was to say that, as a black woman, this may be the first time in her adult life she’s been really proud of her country. Shock! Surprise! Outrage! But not from any of the black women I know.