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9/30/2004

 

AFTER-WORD


  • From the RSN debate special:

    Neither candidate scored any major points. Kerry stressed that the President made a colossal mistake by invading Iraq in the way that he did, while Bush hammered away at Kerry for turning off allies with his "wrong war, wrong place, wrong time" and his inconsistency.

    I watched the debate on C-SPAN, for which they had what they called the "Debate Podium Watch." I could see Kerry while Bush spoke and vice-versa, something proscribed by the rules for the networks.




  • From the RSN debate special:

    I thought Kerry opened strong and finished strong. He pushed for an undefined change in an uncertain time, however, and I don't know that one can sell that.

    It wasn't the performance Kerry needed to win the election; neither was it the one the President needed to end this thing early.



  • Erick Erickson (Confessions of a Political Junkie) has found the theme which Kerry has picked for himself: "He is the Urban Legends Candidate."

    The Dick Clarke stuff. Kerry mentioned a "terrorism czar who had been there since the Reagan Administration," and quoted Clarke's snooty pabulum.


  • I missed it, but Yankees win. They are the American League Eastern Division champions.


  • I am more amused than anything else, and I suppose I should listen to what the various TV pundits are saying. (I'll check out my fellow bloggers tomorrow, when I'm up to reading substantial analysis.) For tunes, I'm listening to late baroque composer Michel Corette. It's awfully sparse, but this is church organ music. So was much of Bach's work, but he's another level unto himself.

    Monsieur Corette is good post-debate stuff.

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  •  

    The Debate's third (and final) half hour


    The President discussed why diplomacy is working with Iran and North Korea. Kerry said the Britain, the French, and the Germans started the diplomacy with Iran.

    The President wants to continue the six-party negotiations with North Korea. Kerry wants them and bilateral negotiations as well. The President said the six-party would fall apart if you opened bi-lateral as well.

    Neither would do anything substantial for Darfur.

    Lehrer stated that there are "obviously major policy differences between the two of you." That's what Kerry wants.

    The President is pushing that we have to be certain, resolute.

    They complimented each other and their families, they talked a little back and forth. Methinks that they're relieved to be almost done with this TV show.

    Kerry says that one can be certain and be wrong.

    The President was specific. He will not "change my core values."

    Kerry says he's never wilted or wavered. And that he's been consistent. He said that Saddam was dangerous, we had to disarm him, but we shouldn't have rushed to do it.

    Kerry's worried about "nuclear proliferation." (He wrote a book about it.) Methinks Kerry's found a topic about which we can speak with some degree of credibility. He's criticizing the President for pursuing a new type of bunker-busting nuclear weapon. "It sends the wrong signal." (Kenneth, what's the frequency?)

    The President brought up missile defense as a way to protect the country.

    Kerry believes nuclear proliferation is the most dangerous problem facing our country. The President says it's WMD in the hands of terrorists.

    Kerry called again for bilateral talks with North Korea, and the President is lecturing him on why that would be wrong. (It's what Kim John Il wants, and it would cause the 6-party talks to break down. We'd lose China.)

    The President stressed his relationship with Putin. Kerry talked about being in Russia when the "transition was made."

    Kerry's convinced that we would not lose China, because China also has a stake.

    Kerry's finishing strong.

    In his closing statement, Kerry again mentioned that he defended the country in Vietnam. And he has plans of all sorts. "The future belongs to freedom, not to fear."

    In his closing statement, the President pointed out that "we will continue to" build alliances, protect America, spread freedom, etc. He spoke of spreading liberty "in the broader middle east." He's looking back at what we've been through together.

    The end of the debate.

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    Debate's Second Half Hour



    The President said Kerry would not be able to get our allies with us, as his "wrong war, wrong place, wrong time" line is discouraging, and they won't follow a man whose core convictions change with American politics.

    Kerry mentioned allies Great Britain and Australia. The President said he left out Poland, and Kerry raised his finger and shook his head.

    Kerry said he's worked with these current world leaders for twenty years, "longer than this President."

    Kerry said that Osama bin Laden uses the Iraq war as a recruitment tool. Bush thought it absurd that he would let Osama pick how we defend ourselves.

    Kerry's had one consistent position: "That Saddam was a threat, and that there is a right way to disarm him."

    Bush: "You cannot change positions in this war on terror if you expect to win."

    Bush stressed that a free Iraq and a free Afghanistan will send a powerful message to the rest of the country.

    Kerry's talking about his combat again, he's hearkening back to Vietnam, he called the soldiers noble and he wants the "outcome to honor that nobility." Yikes!

    The President is again harping on "wrong war, wrong place, wrong time" and changing positions sending the wrong message.

    Kerry cited Colin Powell's "Pottery Rule": you break it, you fix it.

    Kerry accused the President of "misleading on what I said." He didn't say that he would take the troops out in six months; rather, he said that he would take them out in six months if we did what he said. The man is a cipher!

    Bush: Kerry can't "change the dynamic on the ground," as he said, if you insult the leader of Iraq.

    The President again asked for the additional thirty seconds after Kerry's rebuttal. This is done at Lehrer's discretion, and only the President has asked for this so far.

    The President continues to hammer Kerry for changing his positions and being irresolute, and all Kerry has been able to do was say that he is resolute and consistent.

    The President said that we went to war in Iraq because the enemy attacked us. Kerry pointed out that Saddam didn't attack us: OBL did, and the President let OBL escape from Tora Bora. Kerry asserted that Saddam would have been weaker.

    Again, the President asked for the extra 30 seconds. And the President argued that Saddam would have been stronger if we'd have let him go.

    Kerry said he's for pre-emptive war. "That was a great doctrine throughout the cold war." You have to do it in a way, he said, "that passes the global test." And he's using the Kennedy, DeGaulle story, which is not at all applicable!

    Kerry said, "I've been fighting for proliferation the entire time…" (He changed it then to non-proliferation.)

    The President said he did not know of a "global test." Pre-emption is to protect the American people. And the President pointed out that he would not have signed the World Court -- "a foreign court where our people could be prosecuted."


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    The Debate's First Half Hour



    The candidates shook hands closer to Kerry's podium.

    Straight to the questions. Could Kerry do better than Bush in preventing another 9-11-type attack?

    "Yes, I do."

    Unlike the networks, C-SPAN is running a split screen. One can see the reactions of the one candidate while the other speaks.

    Although the tops of their heads are at the same height on the screen, Kerry's podium covers about 10% less of his body.

    Kerry nodded and agreed with the President when Bush noted that the world was better off without Saddam Hussein.

    The President accused Kerry of a "Pre-September 11 mentality." He answered Lehrer's question about going after Saddam and going after OBL by saying that we can do both, and that this is a "global effort."

    Both Kerry and the President have caught themselves using "Osama bin Laden" when they mean "Saddam Hussein." In their minds, the two are interchangeable.

    Kerry mentioned that he was "in combat."

    Also, Kerry is scribbling constant notes while the President spoke, even if he would have no rebuttal. The President is doing so sparingly.

    Kerry nods. "Yes, we have to be steadfast and resolute, and I am." And he played the "I can bring the allies back to the table" card. They allies to which he refers were never at the table.

    He's used the "opening firehouses in Iraq, closing them here" line. That one's been dismissed, right and left.

    President Bush: "I don't see when we're going to get to how he's going to pay for these programs. … Oh, well. That's for another debate." Conversational, a lot like people might have been feeling at home. That was very good.

    Kerry "knows what it's like to go on one of those missions where you don't know what's around the corner."

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    If there's noise


    Pre-debate, moderator Jim Lehrer spoke to the audience and admonished them to keep quiet and still. If there is noise, he said, he will stop the debate and deduct the time from the noisemakers' candidate.

    He appointed Theresa Heinz and Laura Bush to enforce this.

    I don't see it happening.

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    CIA "shakeup"


    CIA Director Porter Goss today handed Executive Director A.B. ``Buzzy'' Krongard, 67, his walking papers. Word is that when Goss was chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, he and Krongard mixed it up a few times over compensation reform issues.

    Krongard's replace as executive director will be Michael Kostiw, who once served on the Intelligence Committee staff.

    Reuters reports that Krongard "once punched the head of a great white shark."

    The man speaking to the debate audience as I type, as shown on C-SPAN, looks somewhat like Porter Goss. His name is Frank Fahrenkopf, and he is co-chairman of the Presidential Debates Commission.

    I'll try to limit my snickers or remove myself to the cloakroom.

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    The First Debate


    The results of tonight's debate will be very simple to calculate.

    JF Kerry must define himself as something, in this case using foreign policy (possibly the only issue on which he can plausibly do this). He should avoid trying to explain away all the various past positions, as there is no way to try to do it before the red light begins blinking. He must prove that Iraq is "chaos, quagmire," explain what the President has done to make it so, and then tell us what he would do to win the war. (The operative word is "WIN," and he will use that word. He has to.)

    Kerry cannot afford convolution. He would only prove a point.

    President Bush has to convincingly describe the situation in Iraq and talk about what the future will be. He should also actively dismiss some of the more silly stuff from Kerry.

    We'll see he gets the memorable line off and who melts down into a lengthy, contradictory answer.

    I do not think Kerry can win this debate, but he will have taken a step he has long needed to take to win this race if he defines himself. As it stands, he is not anything except "the candidate who is not Bush." I've been harping at Kerry about this since last spring, and it's time he started.

    It should be a nifty show, but an hour and a half is too long for such a TV program. That being said, it could also be fun. It might depend on how it is written.

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    Peter Yarrow, Martin Frost, and JF Kerry


    Representative Martin Frost (D-Texas) had planned a fundraiser headlined by Peter Yarrow of the Kerry-era folk group Peter, Paul, and Mary. Frost backed away when he discovered that Yarrow had been convicted of sexually abusing a 14-year-old girl. Now Frost's opponent, Representative Pete Sessions, and other Texas Republicans want Frost to refund the money or at leastdonate it to a charity for abused children.

    Yarrow has known JF Kerry for over three decades, and he performed at rallies for Kerry last January, but Yarrow and Kerry had something of a tiff; Yarrow is a peace activist and, as recently as this past January, Kerry supported the war.

    Puff the Magic Dragon, indeed.

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    MoveOn.org attacks Gallup


    The anti-Bushie 527 MoveOn.org has attacked the Gallup poll, in a New York Times ad [pdf] as being biased toward the President. Gallup stands by its work, and the USA Today newspaper defends the poll Gallup conducts for the paper.

    A key component of the rationale behind MoveOn.org's charges is that George Gallup, jr. "is a devout evangelical Christian." I suppose the theory goes that by counting the numerical value of every third letter in a Gallup question, you come up with the Hebrew term for "I am."

    The First Amendment protects their right to have this brand of nonsensical fun.

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    Election Day is now


    Nearly 75-percent of all voters live in States where they make it easy to vote early via absentee ballot. Some experts predict that the percentage of the vote cast in such ballots will double this year, to 30-percent.

    This is somewhat unnerving, in that this makes it easier to perpetrate fraud. Say someone decides to walk into a nursing home and collect the absentee votes of patients afflicted with Alzheimer's. Or say someone thinks most of those whose remains reside in the cemetery should be given the right to exercise their erstwhile franchise. Or say someone becomes several dozen homeless people. Or say someone decides that absentee ballots from a Republican area of their State ought to go missing.

    How does a campaign appeal to such early voters excepting by passing out ballots? I received a recorded phone call from the POTUS several weeks ago reminding me to apply for my absentee ballot.

    What is the aversion to the polling place? Aside from the campaigns' staff lurking outside, it's an empowering, even exhilarating place to visit.

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    "Yo! Look what I found!"


    What have we here?
    RADIATION POSSIBLY FROM LOST H-BOMB. The U.S. government is sending a team of 20 scientists today to check out a report of unusual radiation readings that could be coming from a hydrogen bomb that was lost off the Georgia coast in 1958."
    We're waiting for JF Kerry to call the President a unilateralist cowboy and demand that Mohamed El Baradei and his teams be brought in.

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    The Caustic Kerry Camp


    Talking to a town hall meeting with her husband Tuesday in Duluth, Lynne Cheney asked: "How about John Kerry's suntan?" This prompted the following diatribe from Kerry spokesperson Bill Burton:
    "Is Mrs. Cheney jealous considering how hard it is to get sun in the undisclosed location with her husband Dick? Or is she distracted over how red-in-the-face George Bush should be considering his failed presidency?"
    We've seen a good bit of that sort of defensive name-calling from the Kerry campaign

    "I know you are, but what am I?" or "Yeah, well the President has cooties, maaaaan!"

    Perhaps it is just JF Kerry's way of telling the President: "You're not the boss of me!"

    And speaking of Kerry's tan, Erick Erickson links to this Kathryn Jean Lopez post at NRO's The Corner showing us clearly the progression from Kerry in the goofy NASA suit to Kerry with the mega-tan-of-death evidencing that Kerry wants to be an… Oompa Loompa (song lyrics).

    It's a cute freak show.

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    Reaction to a newspaper in Crawford, Texas


    The Lone Star Iconclast -- a weekly out of Crawford, Texas, with a paid circulation of 425 -- editorialized recently that President Bush was "dangerous," "let us down," and "duped" us. The paper endorsed JF Kerry as "realistic, wise, strong, and correct."

    According to a piece in Thursday's San Antonio Express-News:
    [Iconoclast publisher W. Leon] Smith is majority owner of the Iconoclast, the Record of nearby Clifton and the Bosque Globe. He's also the mayor of Clifton and a Democrat who was defeated twice in campaigns for the Texas House of Representatives.
    There has been fallout:
    As of Wednesday morning, more than a dozen readers had canceled their subscription and six advertisers had pulled their spots from the paper.

    Smith expects there will be more, and he's preparing for the worst.

    "It will probably put us under," he said.
    Smith complains that his readers are trying to suppress his "freedom of speech." No, his readers are exercising their own such freedom, and their freedom to spend their money where they choose.

    It's a cute sideshow.

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    New Adamo Column


    I've put the new Christopher G. Adamo column, 527 Organizations: Unintended Consequences of Campaign “Reform”, live on the RSN web site.

    Read it on the site: HERE.

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    PRE-FACE

    Good morning.

  • The intelligence reform bill introduced Friday by House Speaker Dennis Hastert contains a provision which would allow the U.S. to deport suspected terrorists even if their country-of-origin is one suspected of human rights abuses. It would appear, then, to modify asylum laws in the suspected cases of terrorism.

    As I mentioned yesterday, that prefab 9-11 Commission Steering Committee of 9-11 victims families objects to the provision because the debate would delay passage of the full bill, and they want a bill passed now regardless of its effectiveness in fighting terror. Democrats agree that the provision is extraneous, and "Human rights" organizations say it could lead to skads of people being tortured in Egypt and the Yemen, for example.

    It seems to me that if this country intends to grant asylum to those who might face torture, we need to draw a specific and updateable list of countries wherein torture is practiced -- not go by some gawfordsaken internationally drawn list which would probably include us because that's how these folks operate -- and we ought to start getting the names on our terror suspect list right. Names-sound-similar is not enough reason to deport someone to such countries as Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Jordan, and Pakistan (those listed in the linked Washington Post story.


  • As reader John Cunningham mentioned below, the Grays would be a fine name for the new Washington baseball team. I heard this suggestion also on a PRI program yesterday, though the public radio show pushed it aside.

    Let's bring back the Grays and hope the players will not dishonor the name.


  • The quasi-venerable R.W. Apple -- whom I saw on PBS convention coverage and became convinced, perhaps unfairly, was at least partially enfeebled -- suggests that battleground Missouri, with its 11 electoral votes, might be "a swing state that has already swung." JF Kerry has stopped going there.

    So much for the prediction of some pundits that Gephardt could deliver the State to the Dems, and I'm reminded of something a reader reported last winter when Gephardt quit the race: in that State, Gephardt is popular only in his district.

    Like a Kerry aide might say, this withdrawal from Missouri contention will allow Kerry to dedicate his resources to States wherein he has a good chance of remaining competitive. Like, for instance, Massachusetts.


  • Writing for the Chicago Tribune on the post-debate battle for media perceptions, columnist John Kass pulls out a fond memory from four years ago:
    Gore went on sighing so dramatically that it frightened some folks. The vice president appeared, if not unbalanced, then weirdly theatrical in a Master Thespian/Little Theater sort of way, a persona he has improved on in his retirement.
    Isn't Gore's new persona, though, that of a drunk standing at the end of the bar railing loudly against his wife, his boss, his mother-in-law, the mailman, and the bartender?

    1 comments
  • 9/29/2004

     

    AFTER-WORD


  • On FNC's Special Report this evening, I watched host Brit Hume, Weekly Standard's Fred Barnes, Mort Kondracke of Roll Call, and NPR's Mara Liasson attempt to extract what exactly Kerry said this morning on ABC's Good Morning America, when he tried to explain again why he voted for the war but against the $87-billion. They spent five minutes and came up with nothing conclusive. Would he have voted no then knowing what he knew then? Would he have voted yes then if he knew then what he knew then now? Voting now as he knew then to vote then and now, was it right then versus now that Saddam is not empower now or contained then and not contained now?

    It's a tough one.


  • White House Press Secretary Scott McLellan observed Wednesday aboard Air Force One:
    Even up to today, he [Kerry] offered his latest contradiction and yet another new position on Iraq. And so I think, obviously, Senator Kerry has his work cut out for him trying to bring some clarity to his shifting positions and his uncertainty in the time of war.



  • Speaking with his wife at a town hall meeting in Duluth, Minnesota, Vice President Cheney told the audience:
    heard John Kerry this morning on Good Morning America for example, say his objective is to get the American troops home. We clearly want them home, but that's not the way to state the objective. The objective is to finish the mission, to get the job done, to do it right.



  • I spotted this note on the Yankees Forum at NJ.com, discussing the Montreal Expos moved to Montreal. A poster had asked if they might retain the name "Expos," and someone called SpongeHead replied:
    The Montreal Expos were the 1967 World's Fair in Montreal. (French speakers called the World's Fair, "l’Exposition internationale," Expo for short.)

    "Senators" would be kewl, but I bet they go with something more politically correct. Perhaps the Washington Democrats will play in Heinz-Kerry Field and the team will be a perennial loser.
    "Start spreading the news…"


  • Yankees win, Yankees win.

    In the first game against the Minnesota Twins this afternoon, they broke Johan Santana's streak of 12-straight starts with a win, but he didn't get the loss, either, leaving after 5 with a 3-1 lead. The Yankees, however, secured their league leading 60th come-from-behind, taking the game 5-3.

    Game 2, Jon Lieber picked up the win as the Yankees cruised, 5-4.

    The Red Sox lost, the Magic Numbers is 1. You know, for the size of the checks George writes…


  • I'm listening to the Carl Lonati out of the Italian baroque. It's good stuff, but I wonder who was the last President we've elected who listened to the baroque. Or to anything classical. An offhand guess would be Kennedy, though Nixon might have.

    Would they admit it in the modern world?


  • I will watch tomorrows debate, and write about it, from the perspective of a Kerry supporter. I know what "my candidate" has to do. I figure it will make it an interesting exercise for me and it just might give me something intriguing to say. (If I find myself carefully scrutinizing the candidates to see which is the champion fidgeter, I might have to see what's on Golf Channel.)

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  •  

    Catholics for Bush


    Eric Lindholm (Viking Pundit) had quoted an article from Insight:
    President George W. Bush has suddenly acquired a commanding lead among Catholic voters over his Democratic rival, Sen. John Kerry, according to the latest survey of the California-based Barna Research Group.

    Barna called this finding a "seismic shift." In May, Kerry led Bush 48-to-43 percent among Catholics. Today, the ratio has changed to 53-to-36 percent in Bush's favor, reports Barna, an organization researching opinions and behaviors of the religious communities in the United States.
    Watching the Catholic TV network EWTN, which is my non-Catholic wont, I hear priests and commentators, such as Frank Pavone of Priests for Life and the EWTN Franciscans, I hear them talk about the importance of this election. They mention no names, but they stress the importance of voting for life. And after Cardinal Ratzinger's papers and statements regarding denying the Eucharist to Catholic politicians who consistently promote legal abortion, the stance of the Church is very clear.

    This "seismic shift" comes as no surprise. It's not a matter of political party.

    A pro-life Catholic friend of mine referred to EWTN as "management," meaning that they reflect the views of the church itself, not necessarily those of Catholics in general; however, it looks as if most Catholics believe what their church teaches.

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    Wild-eyed Thought from Canada


    This if from Canada's nations newswire, The Canadian Press (CP):
    This is the big one, the presidential debate that could determine who's sitting in the White House after the Nov. 2 U.S. election. When President George W. Bush and Democrat John Kerry face off for 90 minutes Thursday in Miami, tens of millions of Americans will be watching.
    Not quite. If President Bush gets flustered and tries to order three Army divisions to march on Boston, maybe. If JF Kerry heals those watching of all their ailments and infirmities, perhaps.

    Not much is going to happen. We'll see who gets off the best line.

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    It's not Zarqawi


    The AFP says that and Iraqi has negotiated a deal for the release of those two French journalists. The two Italian ladies were freed, though some say that the Italians might have paid ransom. Here are four Egyptians being freed.

    What has happened to Abu Musab al-Zarqawi? There is no mercy in a man without a soul, and this is not Zarqawi's way. In no way would his fanatical brand of terror allow for a release under any circumstances. He believes he is taking these lives for something greater than himself. And he loves doing it.

    Either these kidnappers are not working for Zarqawi or the mutant is dead.

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    A California change of heart


    California had moved its primary ahead this year so that it would have some say in the Democrat nominating process, but DNC boss Terence McAuliffe ended that, as well as the party's hopes of nominating a viable candidate, when he truncated the nominating season. JF Kerry had waltzed untested to near-certainty by the time primary ballots were cast in the State.

    Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed a measure Monday moving the primary back to June.

    An election year flip-flop. I suppose such have been made haute couture in certain rarified circles.

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    New Hagin column


    I've put the new column by Doug Hagin, Democrats are going down hard, live on the Rightsided Newsletter web site.

    The beginning and the end: "Just in time for the much heralded presidential debates two of my favorite Liberal mouthpieces are sounding off demonstrating just how unhinged the Democratic Party has become. ... And these people wonder why Zell Miller left?"

    Read the middle on the RSN site: HERE.

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    The District of Columbia Personal Protection Act


    The House of Representatives is set to vote today on H.R. 3193 [text], a bill purportedly designed to "restore second amendment rights in the District of Columbia."

    It proclaims the civil right to keep and bear arms as protected by the Second Amendment, the right to defend oneself and property from criminals, and that existing gun law provide "comprehensive Federal regulation," so there is not need for the special DC gun control.

    If DC had home rule, its leaders would not consider repealing anything.

    But they don't.

    The repeal's main sponsor, Representative Mark Souder (R-Indiana) does not own a gun.
    "My precise argument is that it's a constitutional violation, and local and state governments don't have a right to usurp the Constitution," Souder said.


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    MUTANTS!


    mutant, n. - An individual, organism, or new genetic character arising or resulting from mutation.

    This is not human behavior, ergo "mutants."

    [link]

    If they were to destroy us all and set of their version of an Islamic paradise under their fatawa and their interpretations of the sharia, would these mutants then live together in piece? I'd venture that they would end up slicing and dicing each other. Once you can do these things, it's impossible to live like a human being.

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    Kerry/Clinton: Speaking when Tired


    The "Official Blog" at GeoreW.Bush.com has Kerry's latest explanation for his votes on the $87-billion (see post below):
    It was a very inarticulate way of saying something and I had one of those moments late in the evening when I was tired in the primaries and didn't say something clearly. But it reflects the truth of the position, which is, I thought, to have the wealthiest people in America share the burden of paying for that war. It was a protest. Sometimes you have to stand up and be counted.
    [The bold type is from the GWB blog]
    This takes me back a few years, to October 17, 1995, when then-President Bill Clinton told a group of wealthy Democrat contributors in Houston:
    "Probably there are people in this room still mad at me about that budget because you think I raised your taxes too much. It might surprise you that I think I raised them too much too."
    And Clinton tried to squirm out of it the next day at a press conference:
    If I said anything which implies that I think that we didn't do what we should have done, given the choices we faced at the time, I shouldn't have said that. My mother once said I should never give a talk after 7:00 p.m. at night, especially if I'm tired, and she sure turned out to be right is all I can say.
    [bold type, mine]

    So it seems Mr. Kerry was trying to steal a page from the master. There is a problem, as the official GWB blog points out. It comes from a March article in the Washington Post:
    "I actually did vote for his $87 billion, before I voted against it," he told a group of veterans at a noontime appearance at Marshall University.
    [bold type, theirs]


    So it looks like Kerry is going to have to try again.

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    IT's… Wictory Wednesday


    Minus a Kerry miracle Thursday or a terrorist takeover in Iraq, it is just about time to begin pounding the nails into Kerry's electoral coffin. Let's help him spring for the mallet and the spikes.

    Although you can no longer donate directly to the Bush campaign, you can contribute to the Republican National Committee HERE. This will be used for the cause of reelecting the President.

    Click RIGHT HERE to be directed to the page where you can become a Bush Team Leader, an official part of the campaign.

    And click HERE (page down to #3) for a list of participating Wictory Wednesday bloggers.

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    A Steering Committee want legislation NOW!


    The 9-11 victim's families used by the now-defunct 9-11 Commission as a "Family Steering Committee" are complaining that the intelligence reforms must be passed quickly in legislation which would not spur any debate, such as Republican provisions expanding the definition of "material support" for terrorism and making it simpler to deport alien terror suspects.

    A letter from the Steering Committee read, in part:
    Legislation should be unencumbered by language or amendments containing extraneous provisions or extending or expanding the Patriot Act.
    The question is, then, does this Steering Committee want Congress to pass legislation quickly, or does it seek to have Congress pass legislation which effectively combats terrorism?

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    Kerry's war-funding vote explained


    In case you're keeping track, here's JF Kerry's latest version of his tale of why he voted for the $87-billion before he voted against it. This edition of Kerry's explanation was brought to you courtesy of his good friends at ABC's Good Morning America.

    At first glance, it seems to contain elements of explanations 3 and 6, while it totally contradicts versions 1, 2, and 7.
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    PRE-FACE

    Good morning.
  • The New York Times runs a feature article this AM about Kerry's reputation as a comeback kid is being put to the test this time. It proclaims that he "cemented," rather than maybe earned, this distinction in '96 against Bill Weld. Hmmm. The press do seem to be setting the stage for the "Kerry comeback" about which Mike Murphy wrote in yesterday's Weekly Standard. I still doubt the debate, sans any points scored, will mark the start of that media-fabricated comeback.



  • There is an analysis in the Washington Post written by a Post political reporter and a part time CNN host. The thesis is that JF Kerry has adopted the President's strategy of scaring the crap out of voters about the war on terror and throwing inflammatory accusations at their opponent to inflame the fears in the gullible public. I don't buy the criticism of "using fear for votes," in that we should not become complacent. As for "the other guy will lead is to savage doom," that's politics. I would not say that Bush started it, though; that singularity belongs to JF Kerry. He has been stoking the fear and blame game since before Dick Clarke's testimony last March.

    Remember that, Jim and Howie. Think objectively.



  • And they said that it was too early to be the loutish critic.



  • The campaigns have agreed to detailed rules (ex. No pointing the camera at Kerry while Bush is answering, etc.) for the debates, but the TV networks say that they'll use their cameras however they wish.

    An NBC spokesperson declared: "This is a news pool, and we are not subject to agreements between candidates."

    FOX is running the pool for the first debate, and their spokesman said: "Because of journalistic standards, we're not going to follow outside restrictions."

    Amen. CBS would be airing CSI from 9-10 on Thursday. If one wants to force them to preempt their remaining lucrative program to air a debate people can watch somewhere else, at least allow them, and the others, the freedom to show the debate as is.

    As much as it pains me to say this, the debates have become a pre-packaged joke which I watch only because they're politics. They're part of the campaign, and someone might slip up.

    It's kind of like watching NASCAR and hoping for a wreck.

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  • 9/28/2004

     

    AFTER-WORD


  • Hillary C. has her two-bits to offer us on the state of the economy: "If you add up what is happening, all of the economic indicators, I think we are headed for stagnation at best, and I think we need to get back to economic policies that help the entire economy." Amazingly, she was speaking today, not during the closing years of her husband's administration.



  • Erick Erickson (Confessions of a Political Junkie) argues that the proposed scheme whereby Colorado's electoral vote would be divided would render the States current 9 electoral votes 1. The winner of the State would probably take 5 and the challenger, 4. Why spend money on a large Statewide race for only a single electoral vote?

    He has some excellent analysis of the measure. Click on his name.



  • There has been some talk that the President is going to introduce conscription. He's not, but there are two bills in the Congress to do just that, both backed by Democrats.

    There is S 89, the Universal National Service Act of 2003, introduced last year by Democrat Senator Fritz Hollings of South Carolina.

    HR 163 is the same bill, introduced in the House by Democrat Charlie Rangel of New York. It was co-sponsored by Democrats Jim McDermott of Washington, John Conyers of Michigan, John Lewis of Georgia, Pete Stark of California, and Neil Abercrombie of Hawaii.

    Of the seven men listed as sponsors of the two versions, at least two -- McDermott and Stark -- are insane, and one -- Hollings -- is borderline senile. The others are basically just who they are.



  • The Yanks got rained on.



  • I'm listening to some of Antonio Vivaldi's cello works. I wish the modern composers would give up this atonal, polytonal, chromatics, tone cluster, humanistic expressiveness stuff and go back to the baroque. It's a nifty novelty, but it is past time to reorder the universe.

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  •  

    E-mail, Caustic and Misfired


    Lisa Hall, chairperson of a South Carolina homosexual advocacy group, e-mailed Representative Jim DeMint (R-South Carolina), inviting him to attend a town hall meeting on gay and lesbian issues. DeMint's director of opposition, Ginny Allen, attempted to forward it to another DeMint staffer addressing him: "come on farq give this dike a reply."

    However, instead of hitting the forward button, Allen hit reply and sent the note to Hall.

    Hall:
    "It hurt. My parents raised me to be a Christian and not to speak hateful of anyone, even when having a disagreement with somebody.”
    This is what it sounds like when crocodiles cry.

    Allen to Hall:
    "I apologize for the language I used in the email that you received yesterday. It was completely unacceptable. I demonstrated poor judgment and a total lack of consideration. ... I stand corrected on all points and will be more polite and considerate in the future. Please accept my deepest apologies."


    DeMint in a personal letter to Hall:
    Mrs. Allen’s remarks do not reflect my beliefs or the character of the campaign.


    Hall to DeMint:
    "Perhaps some Diversity Training would be of some benefit. In any case, I will pray for her."


    Hall said that she did not want Allen to be fired, but DeMint do it anyway. He can't have an office manager who is that careless and crass at work. If Ms. Hall had been a frothing militant, this would now be a federal case.

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    New Cox Column


    Judson Cox is back with a new column, Big Infanticide, after a one week, flood-related hiatus.

    We have Big Oil, Big Tobacco, Big Auto... what to call the abortion mills?

    Read his column on the Rightsided Newsletter web site: HERE.

    1 comments
     

    Amjad Farooqi: "innocent fall guy"


    When the Pakistanis killed al Qaeda kingpin Amjad Farooqi, it was billed as a major victory in the war on terror. The Asia Times Online, however, purports to have uncovered that Farooqi was really only an "impoverished foot soldier in a jihadi organization." He was a nice guy, just like you and me save for that jihadi stuff, who was made out to be a bigwig by a Pakistani government eager to please their U.S. masters.

    I'm posting this in hopes that someone alerts the Kerry campaign to this. I want to hear this claim in one of little daily diatribes. Because…

    When the facts don't fit the model JF Kerry needs to be elected, he or his crew either deny and contradict them or simply invent new ones.

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    The Latest Bob Redman Column


    In the latest column by Bob Redman, he makes his case for an Edwards-Clinton ticket in 2008.

    I've put it on the Rightsided Newsletter site: HERE.
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    Trial Lawyers and Nekkid Ladies


    Columbus, Ohio, attorney Stephen Linnen, 34, has been sentenced to 18 months in prison for getting naked and taking photographs of women.

    If the guy was auditioning for a men's magazine, someone has to tell him that he has the concept backwards. It's the ladies who must be nekkid; the photographer remains clothed.

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    Baghdad versus Mosul


    Najma from the Iraqi blog "A star from Mosul" posts her uncle's observations on the differences between Baghdad and Mosul. (He's from Baghdad, visiting her in Mosul.)

    Click on her name.

    Here's an example from her uncle's "tale of two cities":
    Baghdad in more expensive than Mosul. The fast-food places are much more in Baghdad, and their food is better than in Mosul.
    With some help from outside, as their Prime Minister requested last week, the Iraqis are going to make this work. Change the city names, and that observation has been made countless times by countless Americans. Once they've tasted it (the freedom and the food), they're not going back.

    God bless 'em.

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    The Kerry Comeback


    Writing for The Weekly Standard's web page, consultant Mike Murphy predicts that no matter what happens Thursday evening, "big October comeback story for John Kerry."
    The media's Kerry comeback will unfold in earnest after this Thursday's debate. What actually happens in the debate, barring a highly entertaining Tourette's style meltdown by one of the candidates, really doesn't matter.

    The President could accidentally sneer.

    I think Kerry's "surge" will continue in the New York Times, and maybe CNN will cautiously climb on board, but absent something palpable on which to hang that hat, the exploits of Dan Rather have probably effectively put a damper on any media-driven Kerry surge. (Not that this might not happen in any other post-Clinton election under any other circumstances. Remember, the press is ducking some fire for buying Kerry's "quagmire… quagmire… wrong… wrong… WRONG" line.)

    But just how bold is the mainstream?
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    The Race is a Statistical Dead Heat


    Okay, I've always maintained that, despite the contrary rhetoric, this country is not split 50-50, but the government of the People's Republic of China (PRC) has discovered a way to refute my notion.

    On their web site, AM 1490 WBEX of Chillicothe, Ohio, runs a piece from Xinhua, the PRC's government-run news organization. Here's a paragraph:
    The CNN/USA Today/Gallup poll shows that among likely voters, Bush's support rate was 52 percent, compared with 44 percent for Senator Kerry and 3 percent for independent Ralph Nader. That result was within the poll's margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.
    You know, this election is really neck-and-neck in a country split 50-50, just like the media have been yapping for years. Even when the President has an eight-percent lead in a poll with a 4-point margin, it's a statistical dead heat!

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    Kerry, Fisheries, and his Salmon Czar


    Recently, I asked why JF Kerry was not proposing anything on his sole area of expertise: fisheries; Kerry is, after all, a former chairman of the Fisheries subcommittee of the Senate Commerce Committee. He is credited, by himself an several aides, with being the author of the Sustainable Fisheries Act of 1996 [pdf]. (Actually, the act was primarily authored by two Alaska Republican Senators: Ted Stevens and Frank Murkowski.)

    Brian from John Kerry for President? You must be joking points out that last February -- when campaigning against John Edwards -- Kerry promised a crowd in Idaho that if elected, he would appoint a Salmon Czar, answerable directly to him and to his veep.

    A new Salmon position, such as a Salmon Czar, would require a whole new Salmon bureaucracy. And shouldn't the Salmon Czar be a cabinet-level post, with full spending authority?

    The President was "making the WRONG choices" and everything was "quagmire… quagmire… wrong… wrong… WRONG" in Iraq, and Kerry was talking to Idahoans about his Salmon Czar? Methinks Mr. Kerry is out of touch with reality.

    1 comments
     

    Edwards: 'Bush is a liar!'


    The l-word has been used. When campaigning in New Hampshire, John Edwards reacted to assertions that JF Kerry's health care plan would let bureaucrats run health care:
    Edwards also accused the Bush administration of lying about the Kerry-Edwards health-care plan in a television ad, noting: “They will absolutely lie about anything.”
    I feel transported back to the enlightened rhetoric of campaigns yore. It seemed like just yesterday, in 1884, when Grover Cleveland campaigned against "James G. Blaine, the continental liar from the State of Maine."

    When the facts don't fit the model JF Kerry needs to be elected, he or his crew either deny and contradict them or simply invent new ones.

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    "Cleveland Rocks!"


    This post is best read with the theme to the Drew Carey Show -- Cleveland RocksI -- in your mind. Kevin Holtsberry opines in Tuesday's NRO: "Unless Kerry can quickly find a way to communicate a vision and strategy that connects his issues platform with the intangibles of personality and leadership, he is destined to lose Ohio and, quite possibly, the election."

    That is certainly a temperate sentiment. What I'd like to know is how Kerry can win the general election this November without taking Ohio? Realistically. (Oh, there's always the Florida-Pennsylvania combination, but that's implausible for the candidate. He does not have the allocatable resources to put up a strong fight against a popular incumbent in both States without abandoning other States where he is vulnerable.)

    When the President spoke to 50,000 in Ohio's West Chester township yesterday, it was the largest political rally of his campaign.

    (NOTE: The aforementioned Carey describes himself as a libertarian-conservative; in his words, though: "a conservative who still gets high.")

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    Dole vrs. Coleman


    The GOP Class of 2002 is set to move up in the world. Mort Kondracke's Roll Call paper tells us that Liddy Dole of North Carolina has decided to challenge Minnesota's Norm Coleman for the right to replace George Allen of Virginia as head of the National Republican Senatorial Committee. The NRSC, of course, raises money and elects Republicans to the U.S. Senate.

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    PRE-FACE

    Good morning.

  • In an article about their latest President survey with ABC News, Washington Post puts down 750 dealing with how little the country likes President Bush and his performance as President before telling us:
    Despite these concerns, Bush leads Kerry in a hypothetical ballot test, 51 percent to 45 percent among likely voters, in the new poll…. Among registered voters, the new poll shows Bush ahead 51 percent to 44 percent, virtually unchanged from a few weeks ago."
    They then quote several voters attacking the President.

    It's as if they are trying to shake their readers, to wake them up and to realize just how bad a President Bush really is. I think they believe this, and it must be damn frustrating. And wake them up to reality, which is frustrating to me and probably to the rest of the right side of the blogosphere.



  • More bad news from the international front. It seems that in Afghanistan, the warlords are again threatening the government of President Hamid Karzai. One such powerful warlord is campaigning to replace Karzai as President.

    General Abdul Rashid Dostum, my "favorite warlord" from a few years back, incited a crowd in northern Afghanistan:
    ``Afghanistan is going through one of its difficult stages,'' the burly, mustachioed candidate told the crowd, 12 days ahead of Afghanistan's first direct presidential vote.

    ``You need to know who you want to vote for,'' he added, as thousands of supporters clapped in bright morning sunshine.
    The man is a bona fide Afghan warlord, the kind we hear so much about from the Democrats and the mainstream. And we see an Afghan warlord campaigning for election in a Democratic Afghanistan.

    This story is absolutely huge!



  • The New York Times takes us back to yesterday still-going in an article dealing with the intensity of the investigation into the leaker of the name of Joe Wilson's wife: CIA employee Valerie Plame: "The disclosure of Ms. Plame's identity, moreover, may have been motivated by politics." I'd never heard that it might have been motivated by politics, and I wish the paper would have supported that statement.

    Wilson said it that was motivated by revenge and that he wanted to see some frog-marching.

    0 comments
  • 9/27/2004

     

    AFTER-WORD


  • It is refreshing to see the President and the Administration finally set the story straight on the "Mission Accomplished." Kerry tells people that the President had said that the mission in Iraq had been completed successfully. The President told FNC's Bill O'Reilly that he'd do it again: "You bet I'd do it again." Operation Iraqi Freedom had been successfully completed, Saddam Hussein had been removed from power, and he was thanking the troops. As their commander in chief.

    But…When the facts don't fit the model JF Kerry needs to be elected, he or his crew either deny and contradict them or simply invent new ones.


  • Thus sayeth John Edwards in Lewistown, Maine:
    "When I am your vice president we will find al-Qaida. We will find these terrorists where they are and we will crush them before they can do any harm on America."
    That is in stark contrast to what the Bush Administration has been doing, which is to find al Qaeda, find these terrorists where they are and crush them before they can do any harm on America. So to speak.

    What Edwards did not tell us is that he will don his "Elliot Ness rubber body and Halloween mask" and swagger to the theme from The Untouchables.


  • In case you're curious, the Los Angeles Times, for some unknown and ungawdly reason, published a partial review (4,000 words) of the President's years in the National Guard. I couldn't bring myself to read yet another version, so I don't know if they have an unimpeachable source who has uncovered scads of anachronistic docs for them.


  • Paul Lewis at Blogs for Bush confidently states that JF Kerry "will not win Ohio." 58,000 turned out to hear the man speak in West Chester Township.


  • The Yankees were quiet tonight.



  • And I'm listening to The Goldberg Variations by JS Bach. They're the most beautiful variations composed, in my book, though some argue for Beethoven's Diabelli Variations. Nope. In fact, I'd put Goldberg Variations and the six Brandenburg Concertos as the Bach on a recommendations list for someone wanting to start a small classical music collection. For Beethoven, it would be the nine symphonies.

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  •  

    The French and the U.S. Fight Terror


    For all the bellowing that the President has alienated our best allies in the war on terror from those who do not understand that our best ally in this war is Pakistan, the French wire AFP tells us that FBI Director Robert Mueller discussed the fight against terrorism in Washington with the French Interior Minister, the poet Dominique DeVillepin. (Remember him? He has a better coif than Kerry.)
    "Cooperation between France and the United States is good but it needs some stimulus," de Villepin told reporters after the meeting.
    Maybe he would like to a stimulus called President Kerry. They have the same aversion to actually fighting terrorism:
    Two weeks ago de Villepin criticized the policy of "head-on attack" against terrorism, saying it encouraged violence and helped recruit terrorists.
    Whatever happened to those two French journalists you negotiated with the Iranians and Moqtada al Sadr to free? Here's a recent report on them, indicating that nothing is known.

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    JF's Debate Prep


    BC04 has put together a Debate Briefing Book for JF Kerry. It's a pdf, meaning it will crank out your Acrobat. Truth be told, it is an excellent reading companion for the campaign's new commercial.

    Here's a bit - from "ISSUE: IRAQ, Your Attacks":
    Pretend like no position you have ever taken matters. Political opportunity, pessimism and the implication of inevitable defeat
    is the key here. Nobody knows what you really believe anyway.
    [HT, Betsy Newmark]

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    Teddy speaks to Georgetown


    Teddy Kennedy gave his angry speech to GWU Monday, and by the AP account, it was a long-winded a forceful repetition of his appearance Sunday on CBS's Face the Nation. You know the words.

    He did throw this into the mix: "''The war in Iraq has made the mushroom cloud more likely, not less likely." By showing the rogue states that we're serious? Would it have been better to have the UN show them that they weren't?

    Anyway, that's Kennedy.


    On C-SPAN this afternoon, I saw a vid of a speech given last Tuesday at Georgetown by former Spanish Prime Minister Jose Marie Aznar. The speech was professorial in tone (he's a visiting prof at Georgetown), and his English very good if heavily accented.

    It was a good speech, delineating the dangers we face and what the stakes are for the world. He said that the United States was "the only nation capable of defeating terrorism on its own." He meant, it seemed, that the United States not only had the wherewithal, but it also was the only nation capable of putting together a global alliance to fight terror in all the ways it can be fought: financially, diplomatically, on the ground, etc.

    More interesting is his belief that Osama bin Laden thinks that he and his fighters were responsible for not only driving the Russians out of Afghanistan, but also of destroying the Soviet Union. He further believes he can repeat this magic with the United States.

    It certainly sounds plausible.

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    Lieberman and Kerry's New Strategy


    As we've seen, JF Kerry is betting his last set of chances to be POTUS on the United States failing in Iraq and Iraq failing to hold elections and to do anything other than become a den of violence and terror. He has made his case forcefully, that he and President Bush differ on every single aspect of Iraq strategy and policy, though he was fuzzy on the particulars.

    "Wrong… quagmire… wrong, wrong, WRONG!" he shouted (in paraphrase).

    Here's Joe Lieberman quoted in by USA Today's Paul Bedard in today's "Washington Whispers" column:
    Former vice presidential nominee Joe Lieberman says, "I disagree with Senator Kerry's look back" at his earlier views on Iraq. Lieberman says he doesn't quibble with Kerry's call for a multilateral approach but suggests that there isn't that much original in the pitch. "I don't find much difference between what he is proposing and what President Bush is doing."
    Ergo, it's a put-on, an act.

    Kerry needs to make the President cry Thursday night. Anything short of that, and he'll be -- wait for it! -- "a miserable failure."

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    How can John Kerry…?


    "How can John Kerry protect us when he doesn't even know where he stands?" The new RNC ad is called "Searching," and it's a case of watching Kerry's positions change on a TV screen in episode after episode. The intent is similar to that of the last ad, "Windsurfing," but it uses Kerry's own image speaking Kerry's own words, and it lacks the cutesy stuff.

    Kerry has tried to revive his war protestor self in an adamant series of speeches and photo ops, but -- and this might sound somewhat clichéd in this case -- he cannot have it both ways. BC04 doesn't seem prepared to let him.

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    Jimmy Carter: Repeat 2000 in Florida


    Jimmy Carter, the aging arbiter of electoral matters, has declared that in Florida, a "repetition of the problems of 2000 now seems likely, even as many other nations are conducting elections that are internationally certified to be transparent, honest and fair." (He is evidently still referring to the recent elections in Venezuela as "transparent, honest and fair.")

    The main problem, he indicates, is that Florida Secretary of State Glenda Hill is a partisan Republican who will disqualify black and Latino voters and disqualify their ballots.

    It's crass partisan rubbish, but these folks will say anything, make any accusation, to further their political progress. It doesn't matter what gets trashed or who dies in the process.

    I might remind President Carter that he need not fret so much; Michael Moore has pledged to take cameras to Florida this November 2nd.

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    New to the A-1 Blogroll


    Yesterday, I added Christina F. Jeffrey's new eponymous blog. She's the political science prof, former House historian, and one-of-a-kind mind, and I'm the nominal "blogfather" of this one. Check her out.

    I looked, and to my own daunting discomfiture, Instapundit was not on the A-1 bogroll. I had added him back on April 20, coinciding with my "bright," albeit temporary, scheme to bifurcate my blogroll, but I evidently forgot to move him to the A-1 blogroll when I gave up that game.

    I apologize to Glenn Reynolds for temporarily omitting him, my blog was much the less for having done so, and hopefully the arrears have been sated. Welcome to the A-1 blogroll, Mr. Instapundit.

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    Hungry? Eat what you're Fed


    Jeremy Chrysler (Pacetown) feels the campaign plodding along and takes a look a few of the things we're being told today: Bush, Kerry, and Costner. (Wasn't Kev in that first global warming epic, Waterworld? I'd like to meet a girl who saw that movie in the theater. Alone. Preferably with a notebook.)

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    Recruiting Vids and the Mutants


    Michael Ledeen posits in today's NRO, in very certain terms, that the grisly beheadings which take place in Iraq are a jihadist recruitment tool. Look at who would be recruited by such acts, and the argument that the enemy is folks downtrodden by poverty and repression falls apart.

    He argues that these beheading vids should be shown in America. We must understand the nature of the enemy before we can prepare ourselves for what will have to be done to defeat it.

    I have supported that statement since I saw Nick Berg's spinal cord and neck cut through -- and his head presented -- last May. I had to work to find the vid on the 'net, but after I saw it, my resolution doubled. And it will continue to increase as I see more vids. We are facing mutants, as no human being would treat a human life in that manner; show us the acts of the mutants so we understand.

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    This month's Michael Mina column


    Every month, Michael Mina, interim president of the Ohio Republican Assembly, pens a column for the RSN site. This month, he offer's us Take our poor, huddled leftists, yearning to be European.

    You can read his column: HERE.

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    PRE-FACE

    Good morning.

  • The Los Angeles times quotes "a senior U.S. official" (it's Colin Powell) as stating that a few towns in Iraq where they could not vote would not harm the credibility of the elections, but things would fall apart of the Sunni minority heeded calls to boycott the election.

    Even if the Sunnis agreed en masse not to vote, the election could still be portrayed as valid, though. A massive media campaign prior to the election targeting specifically the Sunni vote, saying that the election was of vital importance to their future in a free Iraq, would minimize the importance of any holdouts. And it would help break what would have to be a fractious Sunni bloc


  • JF Kerry is still ranting about the words "Mission Accomplished" on a banner aboard the U.S.S. Abraham Lincoln during the President's post-victory speech -- never mind that the mission of removing the previous Iraqi government had been accomplished, and that the President said in his speech that there would be tough fighting ahead.

    When the facts don't fit the model JF Kerry needs to be elected, he or his crew either deny and contradict them or simply invent new ones.


  • JF Kerry's campaign now admits to having lied to Outdoor Life magazine about his ownership of a "Communist Chinese assault rifle" to remind him of the "M-16 that saved my life and that of my crew in Vietnam."

    Kerry now argues that he does not own a Communist Chinese assault rifle and he blames his aides for filling out the questionnaire incorrectly.

    Kerry also says he owns a double-barreled 12-gauge shotgun. He has said that he enjoys hunting, but we're unsure of with what.

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  • 9/26/2004

     

    AFTER-WORD


  • I became a blogfather today, so I visited the now-deserted home of my blogfathers, Tony & Will at Shouting 'Cross the Potomac. It was sad to see it desolate, but their blogroll is fine.

    From there, I visited Jim Miller. He offers us the following, gleaned from John Fund's book Stealing Elections:
    15,000 Votes: That's how many votes John Fund thinks were stolen from George W. Bush in Palm Beach county, in the 2000 election.
    He gives us Fund's reasoning, which makes sense to me.



  • According to a new poll, Daschle leads Thune in South Dakota Senate, 50-percent to 45-percent. +/- 3.5%.

    The most powerful elected Democrat in the country, an incumbent minority leader, might soon receive his walking papers.

    Will Dick Durbin succeed him as minority leader, or will they go straight to Hillary in a handbasket? (The question is facetious, but I wouldn't put it past Toesucker (Dick Morris) to speculate in all seriousness about this.)



  • The Illinois Senate race is not quite close enough for my tastes, with Democrat Barack Obama leading Alan Keyes by 51-points, 68% to 17%. The margin of error is +/- 4-percent, if that is to make us feel any better for the fate of the people of Illinois.

    Dr. Keyes had to know what he was getting into.



  • Kevin-Wevin Browney-Wowney tired to pitchey-witchey this afternoon, and the Sox beat the stuffing out of him. It was downhill from their, Sox win. 11-4.



  • I'm listening to some Poulenc concertos, nice stuff. It's 20th Century work, a different sort of invention than that which went before. Poulenc was French, and he died in 1963, many decades before the French decided that the U.S. was une hyperpuissance.

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  •  

    Abizaid: Kerry is Lying


    From General John Abizaid, Commander, US Central Command, on NBC's Meet the Press:
    "The constant drumbeat in Washington of a war that is being lost, that can't be won, of a resistance that is out of control, simply do not square with the facts on the ground."
    In the same way in which JF Kerry, Madeline Albright, and others have called Iyad Allawi a liar, General Abizaid has informed us that Kerry, Albright, et al. are lying.


    When the facts don't fit the model JF Kerry needs to be elected, he or his crew either deny and contradict them or simply invent new ones.

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    Krauthammer's Question


    In his latest column, Charles Krauthammer asks:

    If this [insults] is how Kerry repays America's closest allies -- ridiculing the likes of Tony Blair and John Howard -- who does he think is going to step up tomorrow to be America's friend?

    He was referring to Kerry's "coalition of the coerced and the bribed" remark. This remark was explained and excused in a "straight news" article by an AP reporter, who wrote:

    He [Kerry] was referring to the administration's willingness to offer aid to other nations to gain support for its Iraq policies.

    But Bush mischaracterized Kerry's criticism, which has not been aimed at the countries that have contributed a relatively small number of troops and resources, but at the administration for not gaining more participation from other nations.

    Not even a nice try.

    President Bush did not state that Kerry had criticized "countries that have contributed a relatively small number of troops and resources"; rather, the President criticized Kerry for referring to our allies as the "coalition of the coerced and the bribed." What ally would not be insulted by a junior Senator who tells the world that he thinks they were coercible and bribable, that they were coerced and bribed into participating in what they believe is a noble effort?

    When the facts don't fit the model JF Kerry needs to be elected, he or his crew either deny and contradict them or simply invent new ones.

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    Kerry should've been Canadian


    JF Kerry should have been born in Canada, according to Arthur Weinreb of Canada Free Press. Not because he is brilliant, open-minded, dapper, worldly, or any other thing which a Canadian (or Kerry) might find himself to be; rather, says Weinreb:
    Canadians love to whine.
    The article takes no prisoners named Kerry.

    [HT, hipaatwo at Free Republic.]

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    Rathergate is nothing new to the Goldwater Girls


    It's not new to Dan Rather, circa 2004. New blogger Christina F. Jeffrey reminds us that " conservative baby boomers have known since they reached the age of reason--whenever that happened--age 7 for Goldwater girls and boys and much later for neo-cons": the mainstream media has a lefty skew. She wants Rather invesigated for both this and for his " interference in the fair conduct of" the 2000 election, when he gave Gore plausibility by first calling Florida for the veep.

    Read her post.

    Dr. Jeffrey, a professor of political science at Coastal Carolina University, is a former historian of the U.S. House of Representatives. Christina and her husband, Dr. Robert Jeffrey, have two of the best minds on the east coast and their daughter, Marjorie, was my reporter at the RNC in New York.

    And I am a blogfather. I'm too young (in blog-years) to be one, but there you have it.

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    Madeline Albright calls Allawi a liar


    Former Clinton Secretary of State Madeline Albright -- note that the former President's name is a qualifier similar to "quasi" -- was George Stephanopoulos's guest on ABC's This Week; her purpose was to rebut Steph's previous guest, Secretary of State Colin Powell.

    She informed Steph that Iraqi Prime Minister Iyad Allawi "was painting a picture that was rosier than what is true." She soon added, as if to explain: "It did not meet the test of reality."

    She inserted the usually pabulum: "I think we do take our eye off the ball" and "Bush has lost all credibility."

    Steph brought up Mama T's assertion that Osama bin Laden will be caught in October as a Bush Administration "October Surprise," a sneaky way to gain public support and votes. He asked Albright if President Bush is "capable of that kind of manipulation." Albright didn't answer him directly, but he acted as if he were on the verge of believing that the President would do such a thing. This seemed designed to raise the suspicions of all four of his viewers. (I think it's down to me, an AP stringer, a pollster, and a pre-pubescent girl who thinks Steph is "dreamy.")

    When the facts don't fit the model JF Kerry needs to be elected, he or his crew either deny and contradict them or simply invent new ones.


    [Read more of the Sunday Talk Show review in the Rightsided Newsletter: HERE.]

    3 comments
     

    The Secretary of State on This Week


    On ABC's This week with George Stephanopoulos, the first guest was Secretary of State Colin Powell, answering JF Kerry's charges.

    "Al Qaeda is a priority," the Secretary stated. He answered JF Kerry's charge that the Administration has done nothing to al Qaeda by pointing out that they are dead, captured, or on the run: "They're living in caves now."

    He answered Kerry's charge that the Bush Administration made the mistake of letting Osama bin Laden escape from Tora Bora by reminding Steph that what happened at Tora Bora was a "tactical decision made by commanders on the ground." (General Tommy Franks has said that it was his decision not to enter the compound.) He added that no one knows for certain if bin Laden were in Tora Bora.

    The anti-Americanism present in the Moslem world, as evidently discussed by Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf in a print interview this morning, "will be overcome in due course," Powell argued, once the Moslem world sees what the United States is trying to do and the results of our efforts.

    There are more attacks by the enemy in Iraq, as Kerry and Steph charged, because, Powell said, it is getting closer to the election. The insurgents do not want elections.

    To Sec Def Donald Rumsfeld's comment that elections in 15 of the 18 provinces this January would be better than no elections, Powell said what his assistant, Richard Armitage, had said: "That would not be the desired outcome." It's a question of legitimacy, which is something I had touched on before Rumsfeld's comment.

    Whether elections will be held and under what circumstances, Powell said, will be Prime Minister Iyad Allawi's decision to make in consultation with the United Nations.

    Of the political maneuvers and debate in Iraq right now, which Steph cited as an indication of possible Administration failure, Powell said that 18-months-ago, such debate could not have existed in Iraq. (Welcome to democracy.)

    And Powell insisted that the President has no plans to reintroduce conscription, and that there is no need for the draft.



    After a break, Steph interviewed former Clinton Secretary of State Madeline Albright. I'll write a bit about this later, but suffice it for now to say that she reiterated the Kerry position that Iraq Prime Minister Allawi is a liar whose statements "did not meet the test of reality."

    [Read more of the Sunday Talk Show review in the Rightsided Newsletter: HERE.]
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    The Sunday Morning Talk Shows


    Today's Rightsided Newsletter has been completed and sent to the sundry global inboxes, and you can read it and subscribe to have it delivered (free) to you: HERE.

    I has the summaries, reviews, descriptions, and analysis of this morning's TV Talk Shows -- save one: ABC's This Week with George Stephanopoulos... which will be in this space before 2p ET.

    And I have just learned that I am a blogfather (junior grade, of course). More on that one later, as well.
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    Colin Powell on FOX News Sunday


    This is from the rough draft of today's RSN:

    What does one ask the Secretary of State? Host Wallace asked about the National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) of this past summer which candidate JF Kerry has been waving as proof that the Iraq is a quagmire of terrorists killing everything. The Secretary explained that the Estimates "give a potential course which might be followed -- 'it could happen this way.'" It's not an actual outcome unto itself.

    He said of this particular NIE: "It's something I could have written myself."

    As to Sec Def Donald Rumsfeld's remark last week that elections could be legitimate in Iraq even if some areas were unable to vote, Powell too the tack taken by his deputy, Dick Armitage, that for the election to be considered valid, it had to include everyone. "It may be hard in some places, individuals may have to go [to vote] somewhere else." Perception is important: "I think it has to be seen as a comprehensive, full, fair, and free election."

    He expressed the Administration's support for a "regional conference," Iraq's neighbors, despite Kerry's arguments that the Administraiton opposes such a thing. He said he expects one to be held in October or November, and all these conferences must be "well planned," with an agenda and clear goals. Iraqi Prime Minister Iyad Allawi, he said, will sit down with the regional powers and let them know that Iraq will be a free and democratic country which will be "no threat to its neighbors." (I assume he means militarily, because the idea is that a democracy in the region will weaken the bases of the various kings and caliphs leading to a non-forceful democratization of the region.)

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    Teddy says Bush would have started nuclear war


    On CBS's Face the Nation, host Bob Schieffer read a line from a speech Ted Kennedy will deliver at George Washington University tomorrow.

    I'm in a rush right now. Here's this from the in-progress rough draft of today's Rightsided Newsletter:
    Schieffer, with the text of Kennedy's tomorrow speech before him, read the following from it: "I thank God that President Bush was not our President during the Cuban Missile Crisis." Okay, so Kennedy will imply that the President would have begun a nuclear war. Kennedy responded by saying that this President has a "shoot-from-the-hip" policy of reacting to crises.
    Lindsey Graham later told Schieffer: "This is not the Cuban Missle Crisis."

    Kennedy later blamed the terrorist attack in Beslan, Russia, on the President.

    They are taking some wild shots.

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    PRE-FACE

    Good morning.

  • New Jersey. It's polling like it is a swing State, but the New York Times reports that neither the Bush nor the Kerry camps are willing to admit yet that it is in play, while the Bush camp is "watching the State closely."

    New York Newsday uses a baseball analogy involving the Los Angeles Dodgers.


  • In the President's debate prep, the role of JF Kerry is being played by Senator Judd Gregg (R-New Hampshire). It is honestly not known if other "actors" will play Kerry in different situations and debating from several of Kerry's known policy positions.


  • In this debate week, a Washington Post piece tries to tell us that Kerry is "schooled in the traditional rules of debate," while the President wings it. They also allege that Kerry will use his "command of the minute details of policy." I've seen no evidence of this, and they seem to be setting up their "The Dunderhead versus the Intellectual" scenario. They tried it in 2000 with Al Gore, as well. It works for the press, which has traditionally tried to claim some intellectual authority, but it also works to an extent for the President. Although they want to elect someone smart enough for the job, most voters, it is said, want someone with whom they can identify.

    The best politicians are those that can be perceived as intellectual heavyweights and as "common men." Bill Clinton springs first to mind.

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  • 9/25/2004

     

    AFTER-WORD


  • From the Arizona Republic editorial, Sunday:
    It is good to know where Kerry stands on the war. It has been a long time coming. Nevertheless, it is one thing to be a committed opponent, another matter to be an obstructionist to progress toward resolving the conflict. In his remarks, Kerry has slipped dangerously toward becoming the latter.
    I posted a similar sentiment earlier, a tiny, tiny, little, tad bit more harsh. (The post is "JF Kerry had to attack Allawi.")


  • The AP insists that the main topic of contention in Colorado's Senate race between Democrat State Attorney General Ken Salazar and Pete "Silver Bullet" Coors is underage drinking. Two Colorado college kids have died during binges recently.

    Coors has been accused of having, seven years ago, called for lowering the drinking age to 18; Coors insists that he argued that the drinking age is a matter for the State decisions.


  • Nathan Hale at The Commons at Paulie World links to a blog called American - Beer for Soldiers which provides you opportunity for us civilians to send beer money to our brave solders in the 503rd Infantry Regiment. It's a PayPal-driven enterprise, and it's a damn worthy cause.
    Your patriotic support means the world to us! So for those of you that we will never see in the pubs, we've made it easy for you to say thank you, here.

    If you approve of the job that America's troops are doing in the Middle East, and other parts of the world, you probably also believe that we deserve a cold beer. We believe so, too!
    It says on their site that at least some of them have deployed to Iraq.


  • Boston got mad. They defeated the Yanks this evening, 12-5. It was a nice, close, peaceful game until the bottom of the 8th.

    They'll be cleaning the fan for weeks.


  • This evening's music, after the massacre, is Carl Phillip Emmanuel Bach, to whom we refer as "CPE Bach." It's easier that way. His music fits in the Classical Period, but he's one of the composers I call "post-baroque," though I doubt that this is an acceptable term.

    He's a fine composer in his won right, but he's no JS Bach; of course not, but he is of the spawn. His godfather was the baroque master George Philipp Telemann, eventually replacing Telemann as the Kantor at the Johanneum in Hamburg, Germany.

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  •  

    An interesting read?


    I found in my library a 1974 tome called The Palace Guard, by Dan Rather, CBS News White House Correspondent, and Gary Paul Gates. It's described on the front cover as "[a] fascinating behind-the-scenes account of the Nixon Administration and the men who ran it and the country before Watergate brought them down." People like President Nixon's cabinet, Elliot Richardson, Arthur Burns, Daniel Patrick Moynihan, Henry Kissinger, Charles Colson, John Ehrlichman, and H.R. "Bob" Haldeman.

    Maybe he could spend his retirement contributing to a reprise, this time dealing with what it is that Thornburgh and Boccardi are to investigate.

    I do not believe the erstwhile CBS Evening News viewers will return to watch the blandly liberal John Roberts. They ought to see if they can offer Shep Smith $12.5-million/year. It would lead to an unconventional newscast for the tired eye, but it is what they need. The people who want the same old 30-minute pontification will watch ABC and NBC anyway; they're not coming back. CBS needs something new. Smith's delivery is 21st century.

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    Political Annotation Quote of the Hour


    Boston Red Sox ace Pedro Martinez to reporters after his 6-4 loss to the New York Yankees in Fenway, Friday night:
    "What can I say? I just tip my hat and call the Yankees my daddy."
    It's possible that Pedro could get a haircut and play in the Bronx next year. Unless George gets Johnson from Arizona -- where the President has a 16-point lead but the Los Angeles Times calls it "up for grabs" -- Pedro would be the ace.

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    The Sunday Morning Talk Shows


    Meet the Press (NBC): Host Tim Russert will talk to Central Command chief General John Abizaid and Doris Kearns Goodwin.


    FOX News Sunday: Host Chris Wallace talks to Secretary of State Colin Powell, former Massachusetts Governor Bill Weld, and the Democrat running for governor of Texas.


    Face the Nation (CBS): Host Bob Schieffer will talk to Teddy Kennedy and Lindsey Graham.


    This Week (ABC): Host George Stephanopoulos talks to Powell and a couple of old Clinton hands: Rahm Emmanuel and Madeline Albright. Also in the house will be BC04 media consultant Stuart Stevens.


    Late Edition (CNN): Host Wolfgang Blitzer has Hagel and Joe Biden; Powell; Hank Kissinger and Albright; etc.



    I will review and summarize the shows for Sunday's Rightsided Newsletter, to which you can subscribe for free by visiting the web site at http://rightsided.tripod.com, or by sending a blank e-mail to rsn-subscribe [AT] topica.com.

    It will arrive if your inbox shortly after it is completed early Sunday afternoon.

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    JF Kerry had to attack Allawi


    From the Wall Street Journal editorial, Friday:
    At an editorial board meeting with us on Wednesday, Mr. Allawi politely suggested that the Secretary General "probably is misinformed" about the real situation on the ground. He added that he hoped the U.N. would respect its own Resolution 1546 and "do whatever it takes to ensure the elections" are held on time. Mr. Allawi also welcomed NATO's recent decision to step up its training of Iraqi security forces. "The resolve and will of the coalition in supporting a free Iraq is vital to our success," he said. "But these doubters risk underestimating our country and they risk fueling the hopes of the terrorists."

    Mr. Kerry, for one, must not have been listening too carefully to those remarks, given his ungracious reaction to Mr. Allawi's speech. The Senator accused the Prime Minister of "contradicting his own statement[s]" and of putting the "best face" on the situation.

    While Mr. Kerry has every right to criticize U.S. conduct of the war, one would think he'd be wiser than to attack Mr. Allawi for saying it will be possible to hold the same elections that Mr. Kerry said just this Monday were his own exit strategy from Iraq. Or to accuse Iraq's Prime Minister of painting an unrealistic picture about a country the Senator has never visited. Having described the U.S. allies who liberated Iraq as a "coalition of the bribed," Mr. Kerry now insults the Iraqis he'd be working with if he becomes President.

    That's also the argument from this space and from throughout the conservative blogosphere.

    We've established that Allawi, by telling the U.S. Congress that things were improving in Iraq while having told George Stephanopoulos the previous day that terrorist were pouring across the border, was not contradicting himself, as Kerry stated. Allawi's complete statement to Steph indicated that though the terrorists were pouring in, they were being fought and Iraq was prevailing.

    To understand Kerry's statements, one must understand the position in which he finds himself. He's going to lose this election, and at least his aides know it. His last one chance is to put the worst possible face on the situation in Iraq, and that is what he is doing.

    When President Bush speaks of progress in Iraq, Kerry must attack the President's statements; likewise, when the Iraqi prime minister speaks of things going well in Iraq, Kerry must attack his statements as well.

    If the American people believe Allawi, Kerry's lone last chance evaporates. The safety of our troops, the safety of the civilians in Iraq, the safety of the Iraqi people, the present and future of Iraq -- all of that be damned. Kerry's lone goal is to be elected President.

    JF Kerry had no choice but to attack Allawi.

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    Google Censors for the PRC


    An anti-censorship firm called Dynamic Internet Technology Inc. has discovered that computers with an internet address in the People's Republic of China cannot retrieve Google results with sites the PRC government has banned. The same search performed in the United States does come back with the banned sites..

    It seems to be a case wherein a private American company is assisting the world's top band of tyrants in bludgeoning the freedoms and will of their citizens. It's not unethical, though, when one considers that they are supplying the Chinese Politburo with a requested product.


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    Iraq: "Haven for Terrorists"?


    On Friday, JF Kerry said that Iraq had become "what it was not before the war — a haven for terrorists." A place of refuge for terrorists, said Kerry, a refuge.

    Meanwhile, the United States attack terrorists across Iraq, this time in Fallujah.

    When the facts don't fit the model JF Kerry needs to be elected, he either contradicts them or invents new ones.

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    Burkett's Doc Drop


    Rhetorical question, and we have seen our share of rhetoric of late.

    A Washington Post story this morning quotes Burkett attorney Gabriel Quintanilla as likening the conspiracy theories surrounding Dan's fake memos with those relating to the "grassy knoll" of JFKennedy assassination fame.

    Here's why:
    Burkett now maintains that he was alerted to the documents by a woman named Lucy Ramirez, who contacted him after seeing him on television and has subsequently disappeared. He says he was handed the documents at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo on March 3 by an unknown intermediary.
    The only answer to that one is a conspiracy, and any conspiracy worth its salt is bound to have a few concomitant theories.

    If Burkett is telling the truth -- and George Conn might tell you that this is not always the case -- then the intermediary was someone who knew Burkett would be there and paid $16 through Ticketmaster to get into the gawdorsaken Houston show. It was not a public doc drop at, say, the big crate by the back alley or the men's room at the mall.

    Someone call CSI.

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    Poll: Bush gets vote of "Hurricane Moms"


    A Quinnipiac poll of 819 folks claiming to be registered voters in Florida has shown that the President is leading in Florida, 49-percent to 41-percent, a reversal of Kerry's pre-convention 47-percent to 41-percent lead.
    "You can't underestimate the impact of a president coming down and promising all this federal aid to people who need it," said Richards, noting that Bush toured hurricane-ravaged parts of Florida three times.
    This is another nail in the coffin of the media-driven "50-50 split" theory in which everyone's mind was made up, love or hate the President. Of course, the theory is something of the undead, rising zombie-like from its grave like a dozen other "conventional wisdom" canards.

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