Monday, December 22, 2008

Coverage or Coverup?

Glen Reynolds notes somehting "The New York Times managed to write about the mortgage crisis and not even mention Dodd. Or Barney Frank. Are they covering the news there, or just covering?"

Roger Kimbal goes into more detail.

Bottom line? [The Community Reinvestment Act] forced banks to issue something on the order of $1.5 trillion in sub-prime mortgages.

$1.5 trillion, i.e., one and a half thousand billion dollars in sub-prime,i.e., risky, mortgages, in order to push this latest example of social engineering.

But wait: how did it force banks to do this? Easy. Introduce a federal requirement that banks make the loans or face penalties.

He then goes into details showing how the Democrats are reaping rewards from the very crisis they allowed to happen due to incompetence and corruption.

Read it all and see how the Democrats and the media are working a giant coverup to use a crsis they're responsible for to jsutify taking even more of your money to make the government larger and more intrusive.

Oh and don't hold your breath on them fixing the problem. For that to happen they'd have to admit how it was caused.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

We told you so

Via Glen Reynolds an Obama voter laments:

Hmmm... remember all the arguments about how Obama’s ‘executive experience’ as the head of a political campaign provided a basis for judging his capacity to serve as President? Now, we’re seeing his performance as the head of the transition, and it looks quite different.

Yes, you fell for a political con-man's lies (but I repeat myself). You let yourself be convinced that Obama was "different". Well now you, and the rest of us, have to deal with it.

Eric Holder: A frightful prospect for AG

Via Glen Reynolds, Volokh looks at Eric Holder's stance on what citizens should do with guns, versus what federal paramilitary agents should do.

What would you call an Attorney General using al-Qaeda as a scare tactic to justify restricting civil rights?Oh wait... it's about gun rights.
Beyond that, if any member of al-Qaeda had ever bought a gun at an American gun show, we would have heard about it, endlessly. The fact that these two are the only examples citable out of the millions of transactions at gun shows over the past decades suggests that on the list of threats to U.S. national security, the probability of a terrorist buying a firearm at a gun show ranks just above an invasion from Mars.

And it's a democrat. Never mind then. Because everyone knows only Republicans can "shred the constitution" and that the 2nd Amendment doesn't count anyway.

I guess it's only bad if Bush is the one using fear of terrorism to take away our rights.

Holder's also no friend of the First either.
Again he uses the populace's fear of an attack, to justify restrictions of civil rights. You see Free Speech should be limited to better "protect" us from school shootings.

"I guess when you've decided the Second Amendment is optional, I guess it's easier to conclude the one right next to it is optional, too."

Eric Holder *change* Obama believes in.

Rand Simberg notes a report on how mass shootings go.
They may select schools and shopping malls because of the large number of defenseless victims and the virtual guarantee no on the scene one is armed.

As soon as they're confronted by any armed resistance, the shooters typically turn the gun on themselves."

Unfortunately, too many in the media and the gun-control community are too stupid to recognize it as obvious. You might think that this startling result could be the basis for a more sensible policy, but judging by the election results, I fear not. Particularly if someone like Eric Holder becomes Attorney General.

It's not about saving lives or safety; it's about power.

Clearly the Obama Admin thinks that guns are a threat in the hands of the public.

Keep an ear to the ground. They're going to do something.

The Obama Admin: Hostile to your Civil Rights.

Ed Morrissey is on the case

If a job application included a question about religion, especially for a government position, First Amendment advocates would rightly go ballistic. The ire of Second Amendment activists is easily understood, then, arising from the questionnaire prospective Obama administration employees must complete. The 59th question demands to know whether the applicant or anyone in his/her family owns a firearm


Team Obama isn’t interested in enforcing gun laws through job applications. They don’t want gun owners working in the administration, and they’re screening for that right up front.

Gun ownership is a constitutional right. Employment discrimination on that basis should be illegal. It certainly should be exposed so that we can get a sense of how the man who will swear to protect and defend the Constitution plans on doing either for the entire Constitution.

Will a religious test come next in the Obama vetting process?

So, Obama doesn't even want people that have or even have family that excercise a Constitutional Right. That really bodes well for his repect for the Constitution.

Lovely, eh?

Monday, November 17, 2008

Hillary Clinton accepts Secretary of State?

Ace isn't alone in being shocked by this decision.

Why would Hillary become subordinate to Obama?
She'll be forced to execute his Foreign Policy decisions.

Not only will this eliminate (the slim chance of her running in 2012), this also means that any failures of our next president's will be hers.

What I want to know is, how does this benefit Hillary?

Capitalism versus Free Markets

Rand Simberg has thoughts on that, and the division between statists and dynacists.

Who is the conservative — the person who wants the taxpayer to maintain the status quo at the cost of future wealth generation, or the person who favors letting the market work its course and redeploy the economic resources in a more fruitful direction?

There was another politician who abhorred "change," implementing policies to preserve wages and prices, even jailing people for charging five cents too little for cleaning shirts. In reaching back decades to the failed philosophy of Franklin Roosevelt, which was what made the Great Depression great, extended its duration by seven years, and prevented the creation of an unknowable amount of wealth that might have stood us in good stead in World War II, Barack Obama isn't offering us "change we can believe in." He isn't offering us change at all. He's simply come up with an economically destructive conservatism and stasism, as old as FDR and Mussolini — or even Karl Marx, if not older.

Know what's unconstitutional? Constitutional amendments

Ace notes something worrying brewing in California

Whether you believe in Prop 8 or not, judges, supposedly, derive their power to overturn legislation based on laws' purported conflicts with The Constitution -- it is the Constitution from which their power derives entirely.

How on earth can they claim that constitutions themselves are unconstitutional?

This is a simple admission that they do not base their opinions on the Constitution at all, but simply upon their own sense of That Which Is Good. Shorn of any theory which even plausibly hints at such a residuum of judicial power, their decisions are now lawless and themselves unconstitutional, without even a pretext of principled, limited theory of judicial intervention legitimizing their actions.

If the judiciary steps in and claiming that legally executed amendments are a unconstitutional... then that is a serious, serious breach of separation of powers.

Essentially, the courts will deny one of the few checks on their power.

That's more worrying than anything related to gay rights.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

What is Russia up to?

Remember how immediatly after the election the Russians said they would put Iskander Missles in Kaliningrad as a blunt to the US-European Missle Sheild?
Strategypage goes behind the headlines and looks into the logicstics and production of the Iskander Missle

Russia now plans to send five brigades of Iskander (60 launchers, each with one missile, plus reloads, which could amount to over a hundred missiles) to Kaliningrad. Iskander is just entering production, and it would take several years, at least, to produce that many. Actually, it might take five or more years to produce enough missiles for five brigades, because Russian missile production capabilities have sharply deteriorated since the end of the Cold War in 1991. This is one reason why the current Russian government is making so much noise about this imaginary NATO plot to surround and subdue Russia. Losing the Cold War did not go down well in Russia. Rather than forget and move on, many Russians prefer to remember, and use the imagined evil intentions of their Cold War foes to explain away defects in the Russian character.

This Russian deployment to Kaliningrad is all about a unique feature of Iskander, which is that it is not a traditional ballistic missile. That is, it does not fire straight up, leave the atmosphere, then come back down, following a ballistic trajectory. Instead, Iskander stays in the atmosphere and follows a rather flat trajectory. It is capable of evasive maneuvers and deploying decoys. This makes it more difficult for anti-missile systems to take it down.

More questionable math on Global Warming

NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) announced that October '08 was the hottest on record.

Well... not quite.
You see instead of comparing October '08 temperatures to October temps of all previous years on record, they used September '08 temperatures.

It's "accidents" like this that make me wonder if there's not some sort of.. bias at work here. At the very best you can say they're doing sloppy, sloppy work.

Yes, let's make decisions that involve global industry and economics based on data of this quality. Who cares about the data being correct when it "feels" right.

This is not science.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Why does Obama want a "Civil Defense" Army?

Ace has some thoughts on the President Elect's ideas on a "paramilitary domestic security force".

Among many other problems, such a force is, frankly, creepy and dangerous. But it's difficult to express a fear of a large domestic paramilitary devoted largely to a Cult of Personality without bringing up the H-word. Maybe the H-word is appropriate-- but it sounds nuts. It Can't Happen Here and all that.

It'd would be alot easier to think "it can't happen here" if our next president did not make motions that are -well- familiar.

What is Obama's goal here if not to undermine one of the main attractors of military service? The campaign continues running on the claim that military recruitment is low. Why does he strive to lower it further?

Again why does Obama want compulsory service and to limit firearms in private hands.
Add in a possibility of a "Fairness Doctrine" and other free speech controls.

What will Obama do? What kind of Change is he talking about?

Given that there is so little upside to the notion of a permanent civilian paramilitary, the serious chance of small political mischief, and the small chance of serious political mischief, weight against this, um, audacious plan.

That is the question: Does he still want to do that, and if so, why?

Friday, November 7, 2008

Well... that didn't take long.

Prepare yourself.

If Republicans are not prepared — right now — to resist the liberal policies that will be proposed after January 20, they will get steamrolled. Waiting until January to get up to speed will be too late.

If Republicans haven't figured out from the election campaign that the powerful combination of Obama as a cultural phenomenon, a worshipful media, and a populace anxious about the economy will give liberals an almost unparalleled opportunity to enact an unalloyed liberal agenda, Republicans will be beaten before they even lace-up their boots.

As I've stated before, this doesn't mean Republicans should oppose merely for the sake of opposition. But they must be alert and prepared, they must be marshalling their arguments right now against the harmful policies that Democrats have made abundantly clear they plan to enact.

Fore example:

Mandatory "Volunteering": it's coming.

President Elect Obama is already proposing to restrict freedoms. Ironically, concentrating on some of the voters those that supported him the most.

Obama will call on citizens of all ages to serve America, by developing a plan to require 50 hours of community service in middle school and high school and 100 hours of community service in college every year.

If you don't think that mandatory "service" is a restriction of freedom, what do you think will happen to someone that refuses to serve? Quite simply, what our would-be President proposes is the first 'nibble" at limiting what US citizens can or cannot do.

Not a good sign.

This is in addition to a Classroom Corp, Health Corps, Clean Energy Corps, and Veterans Corps that the President Elect is planning.

Bob Owens has some thoughts as well.
The required service Obama proposes is nothing more than dressed-up impressment or conscription, and is unpaid forced labor. Stripping the racial overtones from slavery by requiring all to participate doesn't make it any less degrading. Involuntary servitude is reprehensible in any guise, and we should not suddenly embrace it as a consequence of "change" under the Fresh Prince of Bill Ayers.
A propensity towards tyranny comes easily for statists, and when Obama trumpets his desire for radical change and hope, you would be wise to listen closely to what he is actually proposing and pushing to implement as law. Is he talking about what is best for individual Americans, or is he pushing his belief of how a larger government is better for... someone?

Claudia Rosette has more
The irony is that Obama arrives at the threshold of the White House steeped in ideas that subordinate individual freedom to the collective. In his campaign and his victory speech, Obama declares that America's "timeless creed" is now, "yes, we can." This is not a defense of liberty. It is a declaration so malleable and generic that it could have applied to anything from Lenin's Bolshevik Revolution to the Little Engine that Could.

Yes, pretty words and noble ideals. They still don't cover-up conscription. Are we supposed to be grateful that it's a mere 100 hours a year? Are we supposed to be grateful that people in this program are "free" to do whatever community service they want, as long as the government approves of it and deems it worthy working off their annual service debt?

100 hours is two and a half work weeks. What if it gets bumped up to a full month? What if instead of a more "ad-hoc" style, the service is "organized". It's a short ride from mandatory community service to something much more troubling.

Ace has a more conventionally cynical view on the "Obama Youth Corps".

I think the goal here, by the way, is to demand what will be claimed to be the moral equivalent of actual military service -- thus denigrating real service by claiming that working in a soup kitchen a weekend a year is no different than putting your life on the line for your country.

Obamabots have been fond of the chickenhawk argument for eight years.
Well, boys, now that your man is in charge, and he needs to deploy three brigades to Afghanistan (which you are presumably foursquare behind), seems like it's time to sign up. And don't give me that crap about "you don't get to choose where you serve" (the left's favorite dodge). For one thing, you do get high preference as to where you'll serve if you specifically ask for combat detail."

More on what Obama's potential pseudo military may mean for the... real military.
ROTC still won't be allowed on college campuses, but I'm sure ObamaCorps will be heavily represented. And if the benefits to joining are remotely comparable to those of joining the Armed Forces — college tuition reimbursement, salary of some kind, chance to score with cute girls, etc. — you can bet that many kids will sign up to build houses in the middle of Atlanta instead of deploying to Whereeverstan to get shot at.

An even more cautionary view is the hope that these kids will only be building houses and other community service make-work and not being trained as a new paramilitary branch outside under special Presidential control (our military's primary loyalty is to the Constitution, what would the Obama Youth's be?). At what point does caution and skeptism become paranoia?
It all depends on exactly what our new President does.

Hmm... More Change!
The Obama transition team "tweaked" their community service statement. They're no longer saying it's required.

This is more reason to keep an eye on what our next President will do and how far he'll go.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Fairness Doctrine Stop it.

Fighting the Fairness Doctrine, now. Before it can get more steam.
Waiting until Inauguration Day to get geared up is too late. By that time the Fairness Doctrine Express will be at full steam— wavering Democrats will be pressed to support the new Democratic president, weak-kneed Republicans will want to display comity, the mainstream media will not be saddened to see talk radio annihilated and much of the public will be too enraptured by Obama's Camelot inauguration to notice or care.

The model for conservative activism (no oxymoron) on this is the immigration debate of 2007. Conservatives must contact senators now before the congressional holiday recesses. Email, call, write. If you're in D.C, go to the House and Senate offices. You likely won't get to talk to a senator or congressman but you can corral members of their staffs. If you're not in D.C., go to the district offices. Make sure GOP senators hold fast. Let Dem senators know that this is a major issue.

I agree and I'll be writing my congressman and Senator. It doesn't take much effort and it helps raise awareness and prepare the ground. Even if the Fairness Doctrine comes back, we'll be in a better spot having organized now, rather than later.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Steven Den Beste has some "Good News"


Not the end of the world

I think this election is going to be a "coming of age" moment for a lot of people. They say, "Be careful what you wish for" and a lot of people got their wish yesterday.

And now they're bound to be disappointed. Not even Jesus could satisfy all the expectations of Obama's most vocal supporters, or fulfill all the promises Obama has made.

I think Obama is going to turn out to be the worst president since Carter, and for the same reason: good intentions do not guarantee good results. Idealists often stub their toes on the wayward rocks of reality, and fall on their faces. And the world doesn't respond to benign behavior benignly.

But there's another reason why: Obama has been hiding his light under a basket. A lot of people bought a pig in a poke today, and now they're going to find out what they bought. Obama isn't what most of them think he is. The intoxication of the cult will wear off, leaving a monumental hangover.

Obama won by promising the moon and being whatever you wanted him to be.
Reality... won't let him stay that way.

The main reason this will be a "coming of age" moment is that now Obama and the Democrats have to put up or shut up. Obama got elected by making himself a blank slate, with vapid promises about "hope" and "change" -- but now he actually has to do something. Now he has to reveal his true agenda. And with the Democrats also having a majority in both chambers of Congress, now the Democrats really have to lead. And they're not going to do a very good job of it. It's going to be amusing to watch.

Be careful what you wish for.

In the mean time, those of us who didn't want Obama to be president have to accept that he is. And let's not give in to the kind of paranoid fever dreams that have consumed the left for the last 8 years.

So what are the good sides of what just happened?

Indeed, we need to accept that Obama won, that he will be our president, and move from there.

Again go to the link to see the "good" news.

They're tempered by his predictions. Saddly, I can't really disagree with them. Gonna be a rough ride.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

It looks like Obama won.

Baring any extremely unlikely events, Obama will be the next US president.

Jonah Goldberg has some thoughts

Look, I expect to be one of the most severe critics of the Obama administration and the Democrats generally in the years ahead (though I sincerely hope I won't find that necessary). But Obama ran a brilliant race and he should be congratulated for it. Moreover, during the debate over the financial crisis, Obama said that a president should be able to do more than one thing at a time. Well, I think we members of the loyal opposition should be able to make distinctions simultaneously. It is a wonderful thing to have the first African-American president. It is a wonderful thing that in a country where feelings are so intense that power can be transferred so peacefully. Let us hope that the Obama his most dedicated — and most sensible! — fans see turns out to be the real Obama. Let us hope that Obama succeeds and becomes a great president, for all the right reasons.

The rest here.

I wish America well, and if that requires Obama to do well as President, then that's how it goes. I would rather Obama do a good job and have America stay free and do well than have Obama screw up and ruin the country.

And it's at least worth remembering that the job of political conservatism is not simply to see Republicans win every election, it's to move the country to the right. Conceding from square one that Obama will be the most leftwing presidency imaginable is not the best way to prevent that prophecy from becoming true.

I do hope that the "Loyal Opposition" can avoid any Obama Derangement Syndrome.

Go out and vote.

Vote early too. The lines are a bit long today.

Glen Reynolds has some notes on the turnout too.
Via Glen: Jonathan Gewirtz has some advice Vote for McCain, He May Win

But, if you can vote, you should vote for McCain despite the apparent odds. You should do this because no one really knows what the odds are. The Obama campaign, the Democrats and the media (but I repeat myself) want Republican voters to believe that the election is a done deal and that voting Republican is wasted effort. They want to discourage McCain votes and votes for other Republicans down the ticket. They are doing this because McCain and the other Republicans still have a chance to win. That chance will be reduced to the extent Republican voters take the Democrats’ advice. Don’t fall for it, vote for McCain.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Can only Obama's supporters call him a socalist?

Technically it's Communist propaganda.
But still...

Soviet Doggies Bark for Barack

Obama supporters copy Russian Constructivist artist Alexander Rodchenko's work to make their posters.

So... it's okay to call Obama a socailist if you mean it as a compliment but not if you mean it as an insult.

How Orwellian.

If you don't want four long years of this... vote McCain.

Look who thinks he's already president.

Hotair has the link.

Jake Tapper: Why don’t you have a press conference?

Obama : I will. On Wednesday.

Obama thinks he can just run the clock down until Tuesday, and given how the mass media has constantly covered for him...

Latest Orwellian term from Obama: "Price Signals"

He only wants to use Price Signals to "change behavior".

If you don't actually think about it, it doesn't sound too bad. Then you realize that for the government "Price Signals" are taxes, fees and other restrictive actions.

Link with video.
So what does Obama want to do? Use government power to change what you can do, into something that pleases him.


Here's a specific example of Obama's "Price Signals" in action.

Say goodbye to 1/5 of the energy production in the US.

In short he wants to destroy the coal industry and make energy prices skyrocket.

Wow! Combine that with his plan to drastically raise taxes and I'm sure the US economy will go straight down the tubes.

Both links via LGF

Saturday, November 1, 2008

First issue of Osawatomie, a newspaper published by the Weather Underground in 1975

Well... this is a creepy coincidence.

Zomblog has obtained an extremely rare copy of the first issue of Osawatomie, a newspaper published by the Weather Underground in 1975. Noteworthy passages are reproduced below, along with exact transcriptions. The full pages, with each passage in context in high resolution, are found at the bottom of this post.

Much of Osawatomie, which was written at a time when the Dohrn-Ayers wing of the Weather Underground was transitioning from terrorism to “working from the inside” for revolution, concerns itself with the need to encourage “organizers” who will work in “communities” and use “audacity” to bring about “socialism” in America.

Don’t believe me? Read the quotes for yourself, and see them in context on the full pages below.

Go to the link to read the article and look at the logos too

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Going John Galt?

PJTV has the "Insta-wife" Doctor Helen talk with Bill Whittle and Roger Simon talk about what it means to "Go John Galt".

Basically, the idea is to keep your labor and income down to reduce the amount of money that goes into a "Redistributive" Tax system.

Dr Helen summarizes it: "Why work more if you're going to be punished for it?"

The problem with taking wealth from the productive and giving it to those that are not is that it removes the incentives to innovate and produce.

"There's no reason to be the best. No reason to live the American Dream. Unless the American dream turns into making 56,000 dollars a year and getting some Universal Healthcare."

Misc Links

From Glen Reynolds: Mass Media Depression
Gannett will cut 10%. Time, Inc, announces job cuts and major restructuring. And Newsweek is hemorrhaging revenue: "Newsweek net income results for the first half of the year went from $133.2 million in 2007 to $36.5 million, which isn't so much a 'moderately weakened' business, so much as a 'holy sh*t, time to fire everyone' business." Reader Michael Albrecht emails: "Wow! It's like people don't want the product anymore. Or, more likely, people are not buying what they are selling."
Yeah, I really think this is why they've been so willing to squander their remaining credibility in support of Obama. They figure they won't be around to swing an election in four years, so it's now or never. Of course, by doing so they accelerate the trend.

Rand Simberg points out something that Campbell Brownh notes.
One year ago, [Obama] made a promise. He pledged to accept public financing and to work with the Republican nominee to ensure that they both operated within those limits.
Then it became clear to Sen. Obama and his campaign that he was going to be able to raise on his own far more cash than he would get with public financing. So Obama went back on his word.
He broke his promise and he explained it by arguing that the system is broken and that Republicans know how to work the system to their advantage. He argued he would need all that cash to fight the ruthless attacks of 527s, those independent groups like the Swift Boat Veterans. It's funny though, those attacks never really materialized.

On a related note. Mark Steyn and his readers apply the dark arts of Math to Obama's "Grass Roots" support

Victor Davis Hanson looks at the ends, the means, and the justification.
The messianic style—the cosmic tug to "change history", or stop the seas from rising or the planet from heating, juxtaposed with the creepy faux-Greek columns, Michelle's "deign to enter" politics snippet, the fainting at rallies, the Victory Column mass address, the vero possumus presidential seal, and the 'we are the change we've been waiting for' mantra—reflects the omnipresent narcissism: the exalted ends of electing a prophet always justify the often crude and all too mortal means.
If this is considered 'right', I'd rather be wrong with McCain.

Bob Krumm notes an odd correlation in the polls.

And from the Campaign Spot: If You're Going To Worry, Worry About the Right Things

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Just how much Change does he want?

Obama's latest rallying cry: "One week until we change America."
Mona Charen finds it creepy; she's not alone.
Other politicians have talked of changing Washington, or hoping to "get this country moving again" or even promising to "come home America." Voters who think they're just being asked to change the party affiliation of one administration should take his words to heart.

There's a chance Obama is merely playing to the messiah themes his campaign has used. That would have him being a very cynical hack. The worse interpretation is that he actually believes this, and given past interviews, Obama just might.

And here's yet another 'Redistribution' Statement from Obama.

Maybe this is the kind of change he wants?

Hold the line?

Jim Geraghty wonders if Obama will keep his campaign (that is late campaign, in the primaries he was proposing much higher taxes) promises about lowering certain tax rates. Especially when compared to the "tax happy" nature of Congressional leadership.

A President McCain, for whatever flaws he has, would hold the line — on this, on cutting defense spending 25 percent (another Frank proposal), on eliminating the tax benefits on 401(k)s.

Elect Obama, and the only thing that can stop these very bad ideas is the new president's willingness to risk a bloody, knock-down fight with his own party, precisely the kind of fight he has never fought in his career. Maybe Obama's a guy with the stomach to veto legislation that a majority of his party has backed and that is backed every interest group on his side of the aisle. If he does, you'll hear some unexpected applause from this corner. But talk about an unlikely scenario...

Emphasis his.

This is one of the more laughable aspects of many Obama supporters. Their trust in him to do something that he has yet to ever actually... do.

But what do you expect from a candidate that prefers voters remain ignorant of his past, record, and accomplishments.

Sampling Errors versus Non-sampling Errors.

Iowahawk uses the power of math! to look at how the pollsters get their "poll errors."

He then looks at the errors they don't account for.

If one or more of the above statements are true, then the formula for margin of error simplifies to: Margin of Error = Who the hell knows?

Because, in this case, so-called scientific "sampling error" is completely meaningless, because it is utterly overwhelmed by unmeasurable non-sampling error. Under these circumstances "margin of error" is a fantasy, a numeric fiction masquerading as a pseudo-scientific fact. If a poll reports it -- even if it's collected "scientifically" -- the pollster is guilty of aggravated bullshit in the first degree.

Political Polls are not scientific. Errors beyond the relatively straightforward sampling ones (IE Pull n balls out of an urn containing N where N>>n) can overwhelm the sampling error.

The worst part is that only the polls near the election itself can have their accuracy measured, and that's because there's the election votes to check.

For polls well before the day of voting... there is no way to validate them.

Using one poll to "validate" the results of another poll is like using one computer model to verify another. Unless you have some experimental data to measure against you're only comparing models.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Spread Spread Spread

In 2001 Obama gave an interview with a Chicago radio station.

Guess what he talked about?

Jennifer Rubin

Remember, this isn’t ancient history. Obama was sharing Socialism 101 with radio listeners just seven years ago. At the same time, he was sitting on the board of the Woods Fund, going to Trinity United Church, and a enjoying a robust professional relationship with Bill Ayers. Has he given all that up? We don’t know, because no one in the media has taken seriously Obama’s intellectual and professional development. No one has asked him basic questions about the past (e.g. Did he share the ideological vision of the Woods Fund grant recipients? Did he agree with Ayers’ radical educational theory?) or even his current economic philosophy. Doesn’t he still believe in spreading the wealth? He certainly did seven years ago.

Transcript of obama's latest redistribution thing
Plus this.

Especially when bookended with his recent "spread the wealth around" comment to Joe the Plumber, Obama's statements reveal a man who:
Looks at the Constitution as a real impediment to "justice." Oh if we could just "break free" from those gosh-darned "essential constraints."
By characterizing them as "more basic," proves that he sees "political and economic justice" as more important than the fundamental human rights built into the Constitution. I wonder who gets to define "justice," or who gets to decide what "necessary compromises" to basic rights have to be made to achieve that "justice"? Is ACORN's election cheating justified because the so-called "justice" it is working to achieve is more important than playing by the rules?
Who is obsessed with "redistributive change."

Obama's instincts.
We may hear a variation of the "Ayers defense" deployed in dismissing these comments by Barack Obama in a 2001 interview with a Chicago radio station, talking about "redistribution of wealth" — it was a long time ago, Obama's changed, etc. Of course, the point is not that Obama had these views in the past; it's that, when pressed by an Ohio plumber about his tax proposal, he went right back to these same instincts.

Bill Whittle's article: "This time, Obama was not eight years old when the bomb went off."McCain hits Obama on it.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Damn Tricksy Math!

Greg Mankiw uses the dark arts of Math to see which candidate's tax plan would encourage him to work more.

Go to the link to see the guts and calculations.

And remember, one of the best ways to check to see how good something is whether it's a pol's proposal or a news story... is math.

Running a few simple calculations is a great way to cut through the BS.

Via Glen Reynolds.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Obama's response to critism?

If you're lucky he'll simply cut off your station from further interviews.

Glen Reynolds has the story

Reynolds asks: "Was the questioning out of bounds? Watch for yourself and make up your own mind."

Instapundit reader eader C.J. Burch emails Reynolds: "He got a straighter run than Palin has. No one edited his answers. No one used false quotes against him. No one edited the video tape. No one took him out of context. No one pissed and moaned about his wardrobe or his hair plugs. No one has asked to see his kid's birth ceritifcate. Thin skinned much, Obama campaign?"

Just imagine what the Obama White House will be like and how they'll handle critism and people daring to question them.

It's not enough for most of the media to eagerly help the Obama camp, everyone has to help, or at least not ask embarassing questions.

Jim Treacher: It's not over.

Don't give up.

You can talk back to the people who are lying to you, lying about you. You are not helpless. We are not helpless. Their constant drumbeat -- "Obama is inevitable, Obama is inevitable, Obama is inevitable" -- is a sign of weakness, not strength. If they really thought he could win on his own merits, they wouldn't be trying so hard to brainwash you.

Most of all, you can vote. You might try to outwit yourself: "Well, I live in a blue state, so my vote doesn't matter anyway. Besides, they've already pretty much bragged about how they're going to steal the election, and they're getting away with it." All the more reason to take a little time out of your day on Nov. 4 and spite them. They think we're stupid. They think we're cowards. They think we'll believe whatever they say just because they're the ones saying it. Personally, I have no interest in proving them right.

Armies of the Blight: Men Seeking Work. Anything Accepted. Cash Only. Illegal Not a Problem.

From American Digest: Here's what happens when you apply a bit of logic to a situation that no one dares talk about because it's not "Politically Correct."

Then I thought, "What happens to these men if we arrive at a point, in a recession, where there is a lot less work for them in their many millions? What happens when the American dream starts contracting from the edges and the extra cash that allows us to employ them starts to dry up? They won't be counted as 'unemployed' since they were never legally 'employable' in the first place. Where will they go? Back to a Mexico where a recession in the US will breed a depression in that 3rd World country? Unlikely. Their best shot would still be to stay here. But if they did, what would they do? And how many would there really be? And how hungry and desperate would they get?"

This was just one intersection at one exit from the freeway in San Rafael, California 500 miles north of the Mexican border. And there were about 300 temporarily unemployed illegal residents of San Rafael simply standing about. That would be okay for a day, a week, maybe a month. As long as it was only 300 Mexican males. But if a slump in black-market cash employment became longer, spread and deepened throughout the country, and the numbers of our shadow armies of the blight grew, then.... Well, what then?

Why doesn't the media ask Obama tough questions?

Ace of Spades looks at that:

Actually... The media asked difficult questions of The One exactly The Twice.

Once Chicago media asked him about Rezko, Barack Obama stopped the press conference short, protesting that they shouldn't be asking him about such minor corruption cases. The media got the message -- Obama has no good answers for any of this and if we keep asking, he'll look evasive and might even say something disastrous.

So that was the last time anyone asked him about Rezko.

Charile Gibson and George Stephanopolous asked him two questions about Ayers at a debate. Obama lied and obviously so. The media itself savaged Gibson and Stehphanolpolous for their impertinence.

The message was delivered: Anyone who asks these sort of questions makes Obama look bad, and thus must be insulted and hounded.

They got the message. No Ayers questions since.

Read the rest to see how far they've gone.

Bias: How do the Media and Science deal with it.

Jonah Goldberg talks on how bias can work for or against accuracy.

Griffin might have made the same mistake no matter what, but generally the more ideologically diverse an organization the more likely it is that mistakes will be caught. Take the Dan Rather memogate story. It would not have required a rocket scientist to catch the myriad problems with that story. Indeed, all it would have taken is someone in the room who was not only skeptical, but who actually did not want the story to be true and so was keen to find flaws with it.

Emphasis added.
Having someone that disagrees with your ideas and challenges you on it forces you to defend your ideas.

It seems to me that scientists understand this problem very well, which is why they have such stringent rules to confirm their findings. Everybody wants to find a cure for cancer. Everybody wants their theory to be proven right. So, scientists send their work out to other scientists who may be just as eager to find a cure for cancer, but not nearly so eager that their competition finds it first. So those peers work very hard to find the weak spots in the theory. Mistakes still make it through, but the error rate in scientific studies (which is remarkably high, I'm told) is still much, much, lower than what we find in New York Times as a matter of course.

Peer review is a way to have rivals look over your work.
Another way to reduce bias is the doubleblind experiment. This is where the work is divided. One group designs the experiment, another, seperate one, conducts it, and yet another analyzes the results.

Now that's a bit more rigor than the media has the time for, but they shoudl at least have something.

But as previous posts have shown, the media isn't interested in selling the best news. They want to help get a politician in that will ensure their existance.

Why is the media doing this?

Michael S. Malone notes the shame he feels at what has happened to his profesion.He doesn't mind the hardball treatment of McCain or Palin but...

No, what I object to (and I think most other Americans do as well) is the lack of equivalent hardball coverage of the other side - or worse, actively serving as attack dogs for Senators Obama and Biden. If the current polls are correct, we are about to elect as President of the United States a man who is essentially a cipher, who has left almost no paper trail, seems to have few friends (that at least will talk) and has entire years missing out of his biography. That isn’t Sen. Obama’s fault: his job is to put his best face forward. No, it is the traditional media’s fault, for it alone (unlike the alternative media) has had the resources to cover this story properly, and has systematically refused to do so.
Why, for example to quote McCain’s lawyer, haven’t we seen an interview with Sen. Obama’s grad school drug dealer - when we know all about Mrs. McCain’s addiction? Are Bill Ayers and Tony Rezko that hard to interview? All those phony voter registrations that hard to scrutinize? And why are Senator Biden’s endless gaffes almost always covered up, or rationalized, by the traditional media?

The absolute nadir (though I hate to commit to that, as we still have two weeks before the election) came with Joe the Plumber. Middle America, even when they didn’t agree with Joe, looked on in horror as the press took apart the private life of an average person who had the temerity to ask a tough question of a Presidential candidate. So much for the Standing Up for the Little Man, so much for Speaking Truth to Power, so much for Comforting the Afflicting and Afflicting the Comfortable, and all of those other catchphrases we journalists used to believe we lived by.

He comes to a rather familiar conclusion as to why the media is doing this. Why they're risking everything. Again, it's self interest, the traditional media is hemoraging viewers, readers, and advertising revenue. Thinks are looking bleak...

And then the opportunity presents itself: an attractive young candidate whose politics likely matches yours, but more important, he offers the prospect of a transformed Washington with the power to fix everything that has gone wrong in your career. With luck, this monolithic, single-party government will crush the alternative media via a revived Fairness Doctrine, re-invigorate unions by getting rid of secret votes, and just maybe, be beholden to people like you in the traditional media for getting it there.

The media is selling out their reputation, the trust in their viewers, their duty as reporters, and even free speech. All to keep their buisness alive for a few more years.


Mark Steyn agrees.
The reason the press are going to such shameless lengths to drag Obama across the finish line is because he's their last best hope at restoring the old media environment, including a new Unfairness Doctrine for radio, and regulation of the Internet. The Obama's-already-won-give-it-up-you-GOP-losers stories are intended only to demoralize turnout. Bear in mind, that round about 5pm Eastern on Election Day, they'll be doing those stories at industrial strength, in order to clobber any Republican voters still dumb enough to think it's worth making the trip to the polls.

So the media has an ideological and finiancial incentive to help Obama as much as possible.
Nope, nothing questionable there.

Even with the most skeptical eye this Poll is just damning."By a margin of 70%-9%, Americans say most journalists want to see Obama, not John McCain, win on Nov."

Ace of Spades has more on keeping up the hope.
"Between that, and what are sure to be some massively skewed exit polls from the media around mid-afternoon, election day should be quite a ride. Personally, I'm going into election day determined to vote no matter what I hear, and I hope all of you do the same. I have no doubt there will be disinformation and attempts to make conservatives feel as though their vote doesn't matter, because The One's got it in the bag. Don't allow their propaganda to stop you from going out, casting a vote for McCain/Palin or volunteering for the campaign in some way November 4.
I know all of that's obvious, but I'm righteously pissed off about over Obama's increasingly slimy campaign and the media's outright cheerleading for the guy."

What did Biden mean?

Bill Whittle asks:

A few days ago, Joe Biden was trotted out to make his monthly gaffe. Last time — I think it was last time; it’s hard to follow without a program — it was about how Hillary might have been a better VP candidate. This time he mentioned that a young President Obama was likely to be tested in his first six months.
There have been a lot of guesses as to what shape this “test” might take. But what really interests me is what Sen. Biden had to say later in the same discussion, speaking “off the record” to Democratic-party stalwarts.

Go to the link to ponder just what Biden was talking about.

It's a shame no one's gotten a followup answer from him.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Fred Tompson spells it out

It's 12 minutes long but worth it.

Via Ed Morrissey of Hotair.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

They can't both be right.

Zogby and AP polls show opposite trends post 3rd Debate. They can't both be right...

Those polls do look bad, but they are being skewed (deliberately?) when you look at the internals. I haven't seen the details of the other polls mentioned in the MSNBC story to which you linked, but the Big Ten polls had double digit party ID leads for the Dems in every state except for Indiana.
For example, in Ohio there was a 13 point party ID edge for the Dems in the poll. Does anybody (including the pollsters) really believe that this will accurately reflect the Ohio electorate on election day. My guess is that all of those polls showing moderate to sizable leads for Obama in states like Ohio, Pa., Va., NC, Mo., and Fla. are similarly flawed. The important thing for those of use who do not want to see Obama (praised be his name) elected is to point out these flaws to our fellow travelers so that our side doesn't get demoralized and stay home.

Again, don't give up hope. Go out and vote. That they're pushing Obama's "inevitability" so hard should make one very suspicious.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

A PUMA speaks out.

A Hillary Clinton supporter uses the dark arts of "Math"

The primary process consisted of fourteen caucuses and thirty-nine primaries. Obama lost only one out of fourteen caucuses yet he lost twenty-one out of thirty-nine primaries. You don’t have to be a mathematician to realize something smells fishy. I first noticed something was wrong when I watched the returns from Texas come in. Texas is unique in the Primary world because it has both a primary and a caucus - affectionately called the Texas Two-Step. Hillary Clinton won the primary by four points, yet she lost the caucus which was held on the same day by twelve points. That’s a sixteen point swing with the same pool of voters on the same day.

Emphasis added.

Washington State, Nebraska, and Idaho also held a primary and a caucus and the results were even more divergent than Texas results. In Washington State, Clinton did thirty-two points better in the primary than the caucus, but all delegates were based on the caucus only. In Nebraska, Clinton did thirty-four points better in the primary than the caucus, but the delegates again were based only on the caucus results. And finally in Idaho, Clinton lost the caucus by 62 points but lost the primary by 19 points. And again delegates were awarded based only on the caucus results. The divergent results in all four of these contests were partially the result of the disenfranchisement that is inherent in the caucus process since the elderly, mothers of school aged children and shift workers are less likely to attend caucuses. But they are also the result of voter fraud intentionally perpetrated by the Obama campaign and voter intimidation by Obama supporters.

That is a very... odd divergenge.

Obama is a brand just like any other brand. Obama the Brand has a logo, a tag line, and a song. But Obama the man is not the same as Obama the Brand. Obama the Brand talks about new style politics, while Obama the man used Chicago style politics in every election. Obama the brand is for women’s rights while Obama the man pays the women in his office 77 cents on the dollar compared to men. And Joe Biden pays women 73 cents on the dollar. Obama the brand is pro-Israel, Obama the man is not. Obama the brand touts leadership while Obama the man voted present 130 times in the US Senate. Obama the Brand claims change, while Obama the man picks a Washington Insider as his running mate. Obama the Brand is a post-racial candidate while Obama the man plays the race card at every turn, listens for 20 years to the racial teachings of Rev. Wright, and makes contributions exclusively to Trinity United Church of Christ, the NAACP and Care Africa. Obama the man and Obama the brand are not one in the same.

Careful Lynette Long, talk like that will get you called a racist or a Republican Agent. I wish that were a joke, but it's not.

Ignorance is Strength

Tomas Sowell on Obama.
Of the four people running for president and vice president on the Republican and Democratic tickets, the one we know the least about is the one leading in the polls — Barack Obama.

Some of Senator Obama's most fervent supporters could not tell you what he has actually done on such issues as crime, education, or financial institutions like Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac — much less what he plans to do to stop Iran from becoming a nuclear nation supplying nuclear weapons to the international terrorist networks that it has supplied with other weapons.
The magic word "change" makes specifics unnecessary. If things are going bad, some think that what is needed is blank-check "change."
But history shows any number of countries in crises worse than ours, where "change" turned problems into catastrophes

Facts aren't an issue for them, emotions are.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Polls: What do they mean?

Some more thoughts on polls and reality.

If so, the American people aren't the American people anymore," Obi Wan[Nome de Cyber of Geraghy mentor] responded. "Believe me, there is someone in the Obama campaign who is deathly afraid of the 'McCain pulls even or goes ahead' poll." (And in Gallup, it was within 2 percent.) "That Obama strategist knows how much depends on the whole Chuck Schumer and Rahm Emanuel approach —.work with the media to demoralize conservatives, and keep the perception of a juggernaut going. But a day or two of a few bad polls, and that strategy backfires. The conservatives know they've still got a shot at this.

Remember: If someone is trying to demoralize you and tell you it's hopeless, look at the logic behind it. If Obama were really unstoppable why would his supporters care if we voted against him? Wouldn't he be unstoppable?

More Geraghy: It Says Something About the Cycle That This Is Only a Mildly Weird Poll
[ThiS poll]'s little changed from their last; before Obama was ahead 53-43; now they have Obama ahead 53-44.
But since the last poll, McCain has improved eight percent on "who better understands economic problems." On whether McCain would lead the country in a new direction or the same as Bush, it's split, 49-48. Last time it was 52-45. And yet, as we saw, barely any improvement for McCain overall.
Once again, I'm supposed to believe that McCain winning most of the Republicans (more on this below) and Obama winning most of the Democrats, and the independents splitting 48 percent to 47 percent is going to yield an Obama win by nine percent.
I don't see the GOP base as being depressed and staying home this year. Or at least, not yet.

And that's *why* the media is doing its hardest to depress the GOP base.

Selection Bias and Obama.
Funny how these errors almost always seem to overstate Democratic support all over the place, isn't it?
"Now, this raises a question that Politico doesn't address. If an "enthusiasm gap" is responsible for skewing exit polls, why isn't an "enthusiasm gap" responsible for skewing pre-election day polling?
Anyway, make of this what you will. An average error of 7 points for the One is amazingly high, though, given that usually the margin of error is around 3.5%

Fear: The Obama camp hasn't had a press conference in a month
Gee, why would the Democratic ticket be hiding from their own PR department? Is it because when there aren't teleprompters or editors around the buffoons tend to say things like "spread the wealth around" and "It will not be six months before the world tests Barack Obama"?
How can entrust the country too people too scared to face their most ardent supporters? It's like being afraid of your own shadow.

Just how accurate can polls be? Ace of Spades has a more numerical look at things.

Polling is, at best, an extremely inexact science and even the best polls are based on numerous assumptions about the population at large. And it's safe to say the polls we've seen this election season are not the best. In order to believe the polls are accurate, one would have to think voter sentiment can swing dramatically in the space of one week, and that the choice of Sarah Palin hasn't made a difference in GOP enthusiasm.

You would also have to believe that only 27% of those who show up to vote on election day will be Republicans. And let's face it - the media has been allowing bias to affect their coverage. Why wouldn't that bias extend to the polls they commission?

The point is that such polls are either wishful thinking on the media or a convienient psyops designed to put a wet blanket on the GOP. Remember, Obama barely won the primary and even that's being questioned.

Here's another thing that should concern people who think Obama's tax hikes will only hit "the rich".

"From $1 million to $500,000 to $250,000 to $182,400 — the definition of "rich" keeps slipping lower and lower..."

The Comprehensive Case Against Obama

The Hotair Folks have a large post about Obama and his problems.

And then an analysis from John Bolton about Biden's warning about Obama's inexperience.

Dark Canada

From Rand Simberg more on the Orwellian nightmare that Ezra Levant faces.

Here's where Dagenais becomes a symbol of everything that's wrong with the CHRC and its censorship fetish: she blacked out portions of my defence before passing it on to the commissioners. Seriously -- she censored what I wrote in my own defence, before she passed it along to the people who will sit in judgment of me. She's only allowing me to say things in my defence that she approves in advance.

That is frightening. Not only is he being charged with ThoughtCrimes but own defense is being censored.

And Rand shows why this is something to watch and something to worry about: But I fear that with an Obama/Reid/Pelosi administration, this assault on freedom of expression will migrate south. Certainly the behavior of the Obama campaign has done nothing to assuage my fears.

Constituional Law Prof Glen Reynolds is a bit more breif in his thoughts "Tar, feathers, and other "out of doors political activity" are beginning to look more appropriate."

The conspiracy mindset

David Wong of Cracked has a remarkable article that debunks the 9/11 Truthers and looks into the mindset of why someone would think in such a foolish way.

Huge teams of demolitions experts, who had no problem wiring a building full of innocent New Yorkers to explode, hired in secret, worked every night for what had to be a year (and that's only if they had a big enough crew) placing maybe 10,000 separate charges in each tower and another few thousand in WTC 7 (the smaller WTC tower that also collapsed, later in the day on 9/11).

And nobody notices.

That's right. That's the theory they're putting out there. 100,000 DVD's they've sold with this.


That includes hundreds of private researchers and government employees who prepared gigantic reports about the collapse of the towers from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

Also, officials in the New York City Fire Department.

All were written fat checks, say the conspiracy guys, to cover up the murder of 3,000 New Yorkers. Keep in mind, some of them were New Yorkers themselves - all of the FDNY guys were - and some of them had friends who died in the towers.


Because there are hundreds of thousands of civil engineers and structural engineers in the world (people who are experts in what makes buildings fall down) and lots of demolitions experts. Approximately zero of them say the 9/11 attacks looked like bombed buildings. All of them either say outright that the demolition theory is asinine, or are silent in the face of what the Loose Changers say is video proof of mass murder so obvious even an uneducated jackass off the street can spot it.

The conspiracy guys' explanation?

You guessed it. They were paid to stay silent. Hey, why not? Probably half a million people there, but, you know. Since we've got the checkbook out anyway...

Also, think of all of the friends and family of these paid conspirators, who suddenly see all this mysterious wealth... Wouldn't some rumors get started?

He's shown the magnitude of how insane their proposition is, then he breaks out the Math.

Let's say they wrote 500,000 checks (hell, you've got more than 120,000 people in the American Society of Civil Engineers alone, and they'd be the first ones to speak out). Say the average payout was ten million (barely enough to live rich the rest of your life, but let's just say). So that's 500,000 times ten million which is...

...Five TRILLION dollars.

He then goes to the last part

And here's the kicker...

100% of the people who were offered the deal, took it.

After all, we don't have a single person who has come running into the offices of the New York Times, waving a check and saying, "look! Here's a check for ten million smackers that the government gave me to be silent about 9/11! Can you believe these assholes? Now give me my book deal!"

Not one.

Give the article a read.
It's useful to see how the conspiracy mindset works.

On the previous part of the article he looks into the FAME angle.
Basically the producers of Loose Change wanted to make their own, fictional, conspiracy movie but they didn't have the money. So, they simply cut up 9/11 footage, deliberately removing evidence of airplanes and the like. Their creation was found and they decided that a "documentary" would much better than a work of Alternate History Fiction.

Monday, October 20, 2008


From Ace and Treacher:

Treacher has a good reminder: the media furor over Joe the Plumber isn't about Joe the Plumber. It's about making people forget that Barack Obama said this:

"It's not that I want to punish your success. I want to make sure that everybody who is behind you, that they've got a chance for success, too. My attitude is that if the economy's good for folks from the bottom up, it's gonna be good for everybody. I think when you spread the wealth around, it's good for everybody."

In the eyes of the media, if destroying Joe is what it takes to get Obama elected, then so be it.

Broken eggs and omelets. By any means necessary. That's the Obama way.


I agree with this:
It's been said many times (so I'll say it again, cause I'm just a moron), most Americans are fair-minded people. They know when someone who doesn't deserve it is viciously attacked by a media bent on defending The Precious from his own big dumb mouth. And they don't like it a lot.

Bob Owens with some related hope about how Americans tend to vote.

We will never elect a candidate who was friends with a racist like David Duke, or who belonged to a White Power cult. Likewise, we aren't going to elect President a man who spent more than 20 years in a racist cult that believes God must either be "black" or killed as Barack Obama has attended under the twisted tutelage of Jeremiah "Goddamn America!" Wright.

We will never elect a candidate who was friends with a Timothy McVeigh, a Mohamed Atta, or Ted Kaczynski. Likewise, we will never elect a candidate who started his political life campaigning in the home of two known terrorists (Bernadine Dohrn and Bill Ayers) made infamous by their murderous war against our nation. Nor will we accept that he did indeed "pal around" with these terrorists and other communist/socialist radicals for at least 21 years, funneling them grant money and sharing office space with them, and having them babysit his children as they seek to undermine our way of life and indoctrinate our kids.

He is right in that the American people would not knowingly vote for a person of such extreme views.

Which is exactly why the media and the Obama camp are doing their hardest to keep the public from knowing about Obama's past..

Even Biden's not so sure on Obama's competence.

The Joes strike back.

The "regular Joes" question the media:

The scene turned into a mini-fracas when David Corn, of Mother Jones, defended press coverage. Munoz was having none of it. Why, he asked, would the press whack Joe the Plumber when it didn't want to report on Obama's relationship with William Ayers, the former Weather Underground bomber? "How come that's not in the news all the time?" Munoz said. "How come Joe the Plumber is every second? I'm talking about NBC, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, and CNN."
A black woman with a strong Caribbean accent jumped in the fray. "Tell me," she said to Corn, "why is it you can go and find out about Joe the Plumber's tax lien and when he divorced his wife and you can't tell me when Barack Obama met with William Ayers? Why? Why could you not tell us that? Joe the Plumber is me!

Good, the media is not above scrutiny and they should be challenged. Just like how politicians should be challenged.

We'll see if enough people are becoming aware of what's going on here.

Pay no attention.

From Ed Morrissey:

It’s not the crime, it’s the cover-up. In the midst of Barack Obama’s continuing insistence that William Ayers was just some guy in the neighborhood (and just some guy on two non-profit boards with whom Obama worked for almost a decade), people asked why Obama then gave Ayers a promotional blurb for his book, A Kind and Just
Parent: The Children of Juvenile Court.
Team Obama spokesmen Bill Burton and Robert Gibbs categorically denied it.

Guess what Morrissey found?

On a more serious note, this wouldn’t be an issue if the Obama campaign would stop lying about the nature of his relationship with Ayers. They’ve continually fibbed about it when the public record is pretty clear that they formed a political alliance meant to boost Obama’s electoral career. Their inability to be honest about this relationship is what makes these lesser revelations more significant than they should be. A modest blurb on an obscure book would have no meaning at all absent the fact that Team Obama lied about it on two separate occasions.

It's been said before, but what's also key here is that the Obama camp feels the NEED to supress and lie about this information. They feel that that course of action is better than admiting the truth.

Contrast that with the Image Obama and his media supporters are trying to craft.

Compare and Contrast with James Lileks

Lileks has a small essay on standards or a lack of.

Now. You have to ask yourself how the media would cover a long-standing association between John McCain and a fellow who, in the hurly-burly-mixed-up-folderol of the Civil Rights Era, went a little too far and burned some Black churches, or led a group devoted to blowing up abortion clinics. Mind you, he was never convicted – technicalities, which was ironic, because Conservatives hate those – but he went on to serve on school boards and charity foundations that advocated for States’ Rights, an issue dear to conservative hearts. Imagine the deets are the same – cozy fundraisers, serving on the same boards, McCain’s name on Bomber Bob’s memoir. Add to that some other parallels – say, McCain attended a church that praised a fellow who believed black people were descended from the devil, and believed Jesus was an Aryan.

John McCain wouldn’t be the nominee, and if by some chance that happened, this association would be draped around his neck every day.

You may disagree with this, but I don’t think I’ve attempted any deceit here. Deceit would entail lying about what Ayers did, and insisting they had a connection when there was none. You could say it’s almost deceitful to say there’s nothing there whatsoever, but that’s up for debate. But you can imagine Keillor writing 14 pre-election columns that never mentioned the McCain friend who tried to blow up a Planned Parenthood clinic. I think it would matter, and it wouldn’t be “desperation” to point it out.

I don’t think Obama shares Ayers’ views now, if ever; he strikes me as an intellectual Zelig. But it’s interesting how nothing matters. No, amend that – the small things matter, which is why Joe the Plumber has to be vetted, and Biden’s gaffes ignored.

There's plenty more at the link

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Neat Site

The Balance of Military Power

It shows glossy ads from the "1986 World Defense Almanac".

A fun site for those that want to see defense industry ads.

Again to Joe.

Jim Treacher gets to the heart of it:
The whole "He's not a licensed plumber!" non sequitur is really fantastic. So, if you happen to be standing in front of Obama when he publicly reveals his socialism, what does the media do? Demands to see your papers. That's just delicious, is what that is.

Yeah that's a great response to people that get angry about people saying that Obama's responses have been a bit... totalitarian.

Yup, no one will say that Obama and his goons are being dissident crushing thugs... or else.

Rand Simberg has more links. Please take note of the "I am Joe" idea.

It looks like this has struck a nerve.


Obama and his media cheerleaders let the mask slip a bit and have been going against a random Joe that dared to unravel it all, by asking Obama a simple question.

Remember that.

Friday, October 17, 2008

It's not about Joe, it's about Obama

Betsy's Page has some more notes on the Joe Story.

So on the way to the coronation of President Obama, one ordinary guy asked a question that made Obama look bad. And the response by those on the left is that this guy Must Be Destroyed. And both Democratic candidates look for easy jokes about what type of plumber earns $250,000. They are tone deaf to the idea that Joe was asking a question about his dream, a dream that many people share of working hard and building up a small business.

Remember that, these people won't just try to destroy your life if you ask them a tough question; they'll also laugh at your dreams.

It doesn't matter if Joe is secretly a multimillionaire plumbing magnate or an apprentice plumber with unrealistic dreams. What matters is how Obama answered his question and what it revealed about his approach to redistribution of wealth. We're not about to elect Joe the Plumber.

One would be a bit shocked, given how the media is much more interested in digging up the past of a guy asking a question, instead of the guy (who wants to be president) being asked.

Obama's past is beyond question, but those that dare to question him.... well...

Reynolds: What would it be like with a President Obama?

Glen Reynolds asks.

Bob Owens answers. Obama wanted to bring change. Changes like being punished for asking a politician hard questions.

"He didn't ask Obama to come to his house."

McCain giving a little speech. It's good. I haven't seen a crowd this enthusiastic about McCain. It looks like certian things about Obama's nature are starting to break though.

Some quotes:

"He just asked a question, and Americans should be able to ask Senator Obama tough questions without being smeared or attacked."

"We didn't become the greatest nation on earth by redistributing wealth; we became the greatest nation on earth by creating new wealth."

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Obama angry!

Obama lashes out against the Joe the Plumber issue.
Hotair askes: Given the Bittergate fiasco and his image as an elitist, would The One really crap on a profession as quintessentially blue-collar as plumbing in a public setting, especially with the election so close?

Tucker Bounds, spokesman the McCain-Palin campaign:
It’s an outrage that the Obama campaign and the media are attacking Joe the Plumber for asking a legitimate question of a presidential candidate. This is why voters still have so many questions about Barack Obama. Instead of answering tough questions, his campaign attacks average Americans for daring to look at the reality behind his words.



Here's the video
Obama probably didn't want it to look like he was laughing at plumbers... but shouldn't a guy with such supposed judgment realize how it might be taken.

Also... since when is the questioner given more scrutiny than the politician answering?

Way to go Joe!

Ed Morrissey has some thoughts on "Joe the Plumber"

Honestly, I’m rather surprised that Joe Wurzelbacher and his rope-line dialogue with Barack Obama has managed to stay in the news for as long as it has. I knew when I first heard the exchange that it went badly for Obama. I didn’t expect Joe the Plumber to be the main topic of the last presidential debate. And I certainly didn’t expect Obama supporters to keep the story alive by their rabid character assassination of a man who did nothing more than ask a question — at random.

I think that's the deal if a random guy can ask a fairly simple question and get such a... distributive response, that shows a huge weakness in Obama and explains why the media and his staff have been so careful to cover for him.

There is a stench of desperation surrounding this, as if they sense defeat coming from a moment of honesty from Obama about his real intentions to institute a regime of redistribution. They want to discredit the man who only asked the question as if he’s some political operative who magically forced Obama to sound … well, a little like a Marxist.

It doesn't get more blatant than this. The Obama camp does not want people to learn more about Obama. An informed public asking critical questions of their candidate is something they don't want.

Ponder that. And ponder this:

The Tanning-Bed Media seems to feel that they have a duty to expose every last part of Wurzelbacher’s life, but that asking Obama to explain his political partnerships with Tony Rezko and William Ayers, and his long friendship and financial support of rabid demagogues Jeremiah Wright and Michael Pfleger, are not just out of bounds but downright racist.

How come the past of a random Joe asking a candidate a question has more scrutiny thrown at his past than the candidate himself?

Why is' Wurzelbacher's past less off-limits than Obama's?

Jim Geraghty notes the chilling effect:
Thank God we live in a free country, where you can speak your mind on public issues, without fear that those who disagree will respond by exposing anything you've ever done that you regret or that could embarrass your family.

Oh, wait, never mind. We have to know, according to some, about Joe the Plumber's tax lien, and how he doesn't have a license - which, if the smear artists bothered to check the law, he only needs for commercial work, not residential work.

This is the way our opponents operate now. Destroy anyone who stands in your way. Humiliate them. Make sure that anyone else who ever wants to skeptically question Barack Obama knows that every last bit of their dirty laundry will be aired for all the world to see. Bristol Palin, Trig Palin, — hey, it's all fair game. They've got to make an example of them. Show them that this sort of dangerous speech won't be allowed in the New America.

The lesson from all this? Ace has it:
Ask Obama Questions, and Tape His Answers
Uhhbama is useless without a teleprompter, and when he's not thinking very hard, he slips and goes with his easiest answers, which happen to be his real answers, what he actually believes. He slips into socialist and hard left cant when he's not paying strict attention.
Let's have an Army of Joe Wurzelbachers. Since Palin, he's the only good news we've had.

Keep it up, keep questioning Obama.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Rand Simberg's Question

Would anyone care to explain to me why Sarah Palin is less qualified to be vice president than John Edwards was four years ago?

Massive Election Fraud.

Multiple events. 12 states are affected. All save Connecticut and Texas are swing states.

If we have a repeate of 2000 and it comes down to a few thousand votes in a few key states...

Well one should be quite worried.

And guess the which party the fraud is helping. Go ahead.

The Left's Big Blunder

LGF Operative "Zombie" has a very interesting essay.

The Left's Big Blunder

The disastrously counter-productive strategy of Obama's supporters

Here's a few Highlights from it:

Why keeping the voting both and having our votes secret is vital.

How mere presence of a dissenting opinions can have a great effect.

To what degree to polls influence reality.

The importance of bluffing only if your rival can fold.

The difference between the silent majority and the silenced majority.

And that you are not alone and not isolated, and why you should not stay home or even change your vote to Obama just because that's what's "inevitable".

Why Obama's supporters are hurting his chances by overstating his popularity.

Give it a read, there's some very interesting thoughts on how the terrain has been stacked towards Obama, and to what degree is it real, and what degree will it become real.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Saddly, this is not a joke

Care to guess what Obama Mentor Frank Marshall Davis has done?

I mean with racists and terrorists and conmen and swindlers littering Obama's past you'd have to wonder what's next?

Bob Owens nas the answer:
This story has been known by the U.S. media for almost two months now, but I can find no evidence that any network or cable television news outlet, newspaper, syndicate, or magazine has reported on this. Does anyone believe for one second that if John McCain or Sarah Palin were mentored by an self-admitted child rapist and general pervert that it wouldn't be the singular focus of multiple news cycles, questioning how such a relationship was damage their delicate and emerging psychologies, rendering them too unreliable for the Presidency, or perhaps darkly suggesting that the candidate might have been abused by such a mentor themselves?

Once again the media hides something that if the shoe were on the other foot, they'd be constantly hammering away at.

The evidence of bias is rigth there.

Also of note is the seeming parade of horrible people in Obama's past. It's going to be very hard to come up with satire about Obama.

And that's not including his tendancy to assualt free speech.

This is a joke right....

Via Ace of Spades, Howard Stern did a little prank. They asked Obama supporters if their support was due to Obama's policies... and "mixed up" the policies.

One wonders how much of this is a joke or failing that how representative the three shown were.

Sunday, October 12, 2008


Watch what happens when some McCain supporters march in Manhattan.

It's interesting how Liberals say they'll be tolerant and understanding of all political viewpoints, except for those that they disagree with.

One wonders if they'll think "Dissident is the highest form of Patriotism" if Obama were to win the Whitehouse.

VDH: A Weird Campaign Gets Weirder

Victor Davis Hanson looks at the response to McCain's charges against Obama.

So suggesting that Obama showed terrible judgement in continuing to communicate with Ayers after his circa 9/11, very public boasts that he hadn't bombed enough is now the equivalent to the murdering of four innocent little girls.

The common denominator in all this? Ask Bill Clinton who saw all this earlier in the primaries. Team Obama has so prepped the battlefield that it is nearly impossible to raise legitimate questions about Sen. Obama's mysterious past without incurring charges of racism and / or character assassination. The modus operandi is to have Obama high in the clouds talking about hope and change and brotherhood, descending on occasion to lament those who cruelly lie about him, and then ascend again as he unleashes a variety of surrogates who preemptively create a climate in which McCain can say very little without being condemned s illibera and worse.

Taking away the ability of your opponent to make any statement against you is nice work if you can get it, and very worrying for what would happen if Obama got even more power.

Rand Simberg has more on the funhouse mirror things have become.

Saturday, October 11, 2008


Rand Simberg on the Enigma:

The tragic thing about the Clinton presidency is that it didn't have to happen, and we could have been spared all of the scandals, including Lewinsky, had there been proper coverage and investigation of him before the election. In fact, the media could have even gotten a different Democrat president, had they simply aired Clinton's dirty laundry during the primaries. It was, after all, a Democrat year, particularly with Ross Perot in the mix to siphon off votes from George H.W. Bush. But they fell in love with Bill Clinton and, as we all know, love is blind. The problem, of course, is that when the major media wear blinders, the rest of us don't get the view. That was particularly the case in 1992 when the web had just been invented and the only people using the Internet were nerds.

Well, now the media have found a new paramour with a checkered past, and they (with a few exceptions) are once again lovingly carrying (or at least attempting to carry) the non-blushing bride across the electoral threshold. Just as few bothered to go to Little Rock in 1992, the media haven't been able to spare any reporters from their vital duties in checking library records in Wasilla, Alaska, to take a trip to Hyde Park to see just what this new candidate is and was about.

Fortunately, this time there are a few individuals who have been doing so, and unlike 1992, they have their own printing presses, in the form of blogs and web publications. And what they've found is potentially disturbing, and certainly information that the voting public should have a right to know before it buys another pig in a poke.

Looking at the comments and at other talking points, the primary defense of Obama's supporters seems to be "We already know all we need to know about Obama and McCain." "Obama's been running for two years therefore he has to have been vetted." "This is just McCain being distracting."

None of the Obama supporters address the notion that if the tables were reversed they'd be crowing (and rightly so) about McCain. They don't seem to admit or realize that things are.. odd about Obama and his past.

Speaking of enigmas... what might happen under an Obama presidency?
Slublog admits that it's very hard going, because Obama has kept his core views so closely held now and has such a thin record of acomplishments.
What an actual President Obama would do could be better or worse than what I've written here. Still, I'm not encouraged by the fact that Obama seems to have political instincts that run contrary to mainstream American values. Obama answers criticism by threatening legal action. He has his own television channel and is far too comfortable with the cult of personality that has been created around him. And as an employee and financial supporter of the hopelessly corrupt ACORN, Obama may have unwittingly abetted voter fraud. As president, he could by omission or commission strengthen that organization, making truly fair elections harder to achieve.

In summary, the list is: Trying to reinstate the Fairness Doctrine, remove the 22nd Ammendment, remove the electoral college, more traiditonal "liberal" tax and economic policies, and nautrally tilt the Supreme Court and use it to revisit 2nd Ammendment stuff like Heller.

Which all work to reduce and silence Obama's critics, enable him to be in office for more than two years, and no longer need to worry about rural voters in "Flyover country". For a taste consider the cries of racism and thugish behavior that Obama is leveraging as just a candidate.

Blatant Double Standards

Glen Reynolds:
So we've had nearly 8 years of lefty assassination fantasies about George W. Bush, and Bill Ayers' bombing campaign is explained away as a consequence of him having just felt so strongly about social justice, but a few people yell things at McCain rallies and suddenly it's a sign that anger is out of control in American politics? It's nice of McCain to try to tamp that down, and James Taranto sounds a proper cautionary note -- but, please, can we also note the staggering level of hypocrisy here? (And that's before we get to the Obama campaign's thuggish tactics aimed at silencing critics.)

The Angry Left has gotten away with all sorts of beyond-the-pale behavior throughout the Bush Administration. The double standards involved -- particularly on the part of the press -- are what are feeding this anger.

Follow the link for more.

The level of hypocrisy and doublethink is appaling. McCain is responsible for every question a supporter at a rally asks him, while Obama's fine to spend years working will all sorts of highly questionable people.

I suppose projection is playing a large part of this.

Obama and Ayers, it's the Ideology

Bob Owens has a primer on just what the Weather Underground was and how it relates to Obama

Obama's associates: Imagine if they were McCain's

Imagine if John McCain's career had been launched at the home of a right-wing terrorist such as Timothy McVeigh. Do you think the media would be shrugging their shoulders?
Imagine if John McCain were closely associated with a right-wing group that state officials say was actively committing widespread voter fraud running up to this election. Would the media ignore it?
If John McCain spent two decades in a church with a right-wing pastor who preached a version of white supremacy and routinely condemned America, would the media suggest that the tie was no reflection on McCain's own thoughts or ideology?

Andy McCarthy on the real meaning of Ayers in relation to Obama.

That was the ideology that drove [Ayers] to bomb American targets, it is the ideology he has taken to America's classrooms (which are just a different front in the same war he has been raging against our society for 40 years), it is the ideology he has never hidden from anyone, and — here's the point — it is the ideology that drove his partnership with Barack Obama. That's the reason Obama is minimizing the relationship. Obama and Ayers worked well together — happily funding the same communists, socialists, America haters, Israel haters, etc. — because they were ideologically aligned. Obama is smoother and more marketable than Ayers, but ideologically they're coming from the same place: American society needs drastic change.

Change is a central theme to Obama's campaign, but what kind of change?

And if you want to know the change Obama and Ayers have in mind, look at what they did at the Chicago Annenberg Challenge. Look at Obama's Chicago years, which explains why Ayers and Dohrn would host the launching of his political career from their living room. That's where Obama doesn't want to go — because if voters look there, he's toast.

Indeed remember that the main response to these questions about Obama's past boil down to "You don't need to know anymore about that, we've told you enough about him."

Project Orion

Dark Roasted Blend has some info on Project Orion.
The ultimate expresion of 1950's erea super science.
Space travel using nuclear explosions.

Polls versus Uncertianty Analysis

Steven M. Warshawsky looks into Polls specifically their "margin of error", sampling noise, ideology weighting, and voter intertia.

It's an interesting peice that essentially says that the polls are too close to call given the sampling errors.

Which is a perfectly fine way to look at the data. One example is the drastic shift in voter opinion and party affiliation that some polls have in day to day. Normally, voters don't change their opinions back and forth like that, but... a sample that has a lot of noise would show a fair bit of random jittering.

Of course, it's not much of a horserace if you look at the data and go. "Well, things may be going in Candidate A's favor but we can't really be sure."

It's much more marketable to cite numbers and points and make it look like a contest that's acutally being tracked.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

What is a Right?

Bill Whittle notes a slippery slope and a stark diminishing of what it means for something to be a Right.

During the presidential debate Tuesday night, Barack Obama was asked if he thought health care was a "right."

He said he thought it was a right. Well, if you accept that premise, I think you can ask some logical follow-up questions: Food is more important than health care. You die pretty quickly without food. Do we have a "right" to food in America? What about shelter? Do we have a "right" to housing? And if we do have a right to housing, what standard of housing do we have a right to? And if it is a right, due to all Americans, wouldn't that mean that no one should have to accept any housing, or health care, which is inferior to anyone else's… since it's a right?

This is the problem of expanding rights to include things that aren't "rights".

It also diminishes the value of rights such as free speech and bearing arms. Which unsurprisingly Obama is also quite... questionable on.

What's the difference between the rights we have and the "rights" Obama wants to give us?

Simply this: Constitutional rights protect us from things: intimidation, illegal search and seizure, self-incrimination, and so on. The revolutionary idea of our Founding Fathers was that people had a God-given right to live as they saw fit. Our constitutional rights protect us from the power of government.

But these new so-called "rights" are about the government — who the Founders saw as the enemy — giving us things: food, health care, education... And when we have a right to be given stuff that previously we had to work for, then there is no reason — none — to go and work for them. The goody bag has no bottom, except bankruptcy and ruin.