Archive for October, 2008

WaPo endorses Barack Obama.

Oct 16, 2008 in Barack Obama

Kind of a pleasant surprise, given their history. They had them some McCain love before…and they admit their deviant ways, if you read the full endorsement.

THE NOMINATING process this year produced two unusually talented and qualified presidential candidates. There are few public figures we have respected more over the years than Sen. John McCain. Yet it is without ambivalence that we endorse Sen. Barack Obama for president.

The choice is made easy in part by Mr. McCain’s disappointing campaign, above all his irresponsible selection of a running mate who is not ready to be president. It is made easy in larger part, though, because of our admiration for Mr. Obama and the impressive qualities he has shown during this long race. Yes, we have reservations and concerns, almost inevitably, given Mr. Obama’s relatively brief experience in national politics. But we also have enormous hopes.

Mr. Obama is a man of supple intelligence, with a nuanced grasp of complex issues and evident skill at conciliation and consensus-building. At home, we believe, he would respond to the economic crisis with a healthy respect for markets tempered by justified dismay over rising inequality and an understanding of the need for focused regulation. Abroad, the best evidence suggests that he would seek to maintain U.S. leadership and engagement, continue the fight against terrorists, and wage vigorous diplomacy on behalf of U.S. values and interests. Mr. Obama has the potential to become a great president. Given the enormous problems he would confront from his first day in office, and the damage wrought over the past eight years, we would settle for very good.


Epic McFailin is at the wrong place in history.

Oct 16, 2008 in Uncategorized


Now we have a word for them. A funny article on the modern etymology of “fail” here.


On the merits…

Oct 16, 2008 in Barack Obama, Old Man McCain

Somebody, damned if I can remember who, noted that were it not for the instant polls and feedback from voters, our MSM Beltway crowd would be falling all over themselves to award the debates to McCain “on points.” Fortunately, the people have pushed back and forced them to take a more democratic stance on the debates: Obama won all three, resoundingly. McCain attacked…Beltway says, “Ooh, McCain aggressor, good!” People says, “Bullshit distraction, bad.” Obama rebutted, Beltway says, “Ooh, McCain aggressor, good!” People says, “That response answered my concern.” They were paying attention to the points.


1. Again, if you agree with Obama on the issues, he outscored McCain on substance, and if you agree with McCain on the issues, you’re likely to say he won on points but concede that he was an angry, testy, attack machine who couldn’t ruffle Obama. And if you’re a hoppin’ crazy rightwinger, you saw McCain try to make ayers stick and flop like a wet noodle.

But again, independents and swing voters are handing it overwhelmingly to Obama. More people agree with him, more people see his rational temperament as befitting a president in troubled times, not stuntman hothead contempt-monster McCain. We jumped into one war over a president’s manly issues, should we put somebody as angry and impetuous as McCain in charge of the next crisis?

2. Really, where did McCain land a blow? Ayers failed. Acorn failed. Taxes failed. Health care failed. Obama would answer his questions, and McCain would simply repeat his original charges.

3. McCain not acknowledging Palin as an epic fail is an epic fail. Obama didn’t slam her because he didn’t have to state the obvious.

4. McCain mocking the health of the mother as a factor in abortion, bad bad move.

5. “I’m proud of the people who attend my rallies!” wasn’t really an effective response when so many people are screaming insane shit about Obama. And, as others have noted, he’s very responsible for Palin at the least.

6. “If we woulda done my townhalls I wouldn’t be running such despicable ads!” is weak shit and everybody knows it.

7. Obama said “no fine for small businesses” and McCain looked like he was about to fall out of his seat with shock. Then he repeated that Obama would fine small businesses.

8. “I’m not George Bush!” you told us it would be a great idea to elect him twice. You hugged him. You voted for his policies. You’re coming back with the same ideas peppered with a little bit of McCain flavor. You shared the same philosophies that brought us economic ruin. Obama shoulda ran against Bush in 2004 is a comeback? You tried in in 2000, McCain, and he slimeballed you…and you sucked it up like a good Republican. You’ve spent most of your time trying to get George’s fans to like you, and how dare Obama make the election about George W. Bush?

Even Fox News can’t get their focus groups to go for McCain. There is simply something too big and too real here for them to cover up.

We understand, Beltway-ites. You are scared of rightwingers. You were scared of George W. Bush, and to some extent remain so. You see and hear things with have become ingrained within you as Pavlovian cues to slobber for Republicans, but there’s no meat in the bowl. Epic fail for you, epic win for the people.



Oct 16, 2008 in Uncategorized

The radical right wing are in fits of ecstasy this morning over the invocation of the William Ayers bogeyman and the ACORN “association”. Unfortunately for them their obsession with creating a campaign built on character assassination and guilt-by-association tactics has finally cost them the election. Last night John McCain became the perfect charicature of what it means to be a Republican; angry, paranoid, petty and fiercely defiant of anything resembling sound fiscal policy. What the ditto-heads never realized was that Ayers was more potent as a rumor than it ever would be in a debate. Giving Obama the chance to respond rendered the charge impotent. Barack was aware of this fact and it is precisely why he challenged McCain to say it to his face and just like their heroes Limbaugh, Hannity, etc, their claims are only effective when their opponent is not present to defend themselves. More importantly, independent voters polled by all networks also know a losing angle when they see one.
Right now the wingers only hope is that the Republicans will use their armies of lawyers to abridge democracy once again by bullying local precincts into not counting their votes. The groundwork is already being laid. The Malkins among them are already convinced that poor black people are going to steal the election from them by putting Mickey Mouse on voter registration cards. It sounds hard to believe but when have the wingers ever been averse to conspiracy theories?


Serves me right for giving McCain credit.

Oct 16, 2008 in Uncategorized

If I had to pick a strong point for McCain last night, it would have been on education. His points sounded like they’d appeal to lots of voters.

I should have known better:

The D.C. voucher program that McCain is so fond of is a complete mess. (It wasn’t, by the way, “requested”; it was imposed on the city by Bush and Republicans in Congress.)

Last fall we learned that after Congress handed over tax dollars to unregulated private schools in D.C. without conditions, taxpayers ended up financing unaccredited schools, “unsuitable learning environments,” schools with no operating permits, and schools where teachers didn’t even have bachelor’s degrees. Worse yet, a report from the administration released over the summer found that students in D.C. who received vouchers didn’t do any better academically, either.

Of course, it’s not just Washington, D.C. As Greg Anrig recently explained in a terrific piece for the Washington Monthly, voucher “experiments” have failed to deliver the results proponents expected, and as a result, a lot of conservative activists are slowly but surely giving up on the idea altogether.

He really is a candidate from decades past, sent here via time machine to be very, very angry. Or just an old man, spouting tired lines and angry that nobody’s listening to him anymore. I can’t wait til I’m like that!


Hot topic!

Oct 16, 2008 in Barack Obama, Politics, The senility of John McCain

To me, the big question is, after three debates in a row going to Barack Obama, do the rightwingers have the energy to try a “debates don’t matter” meme? They’ve certainly got the manic energy…just listen to one of them speak for longer than ten seconds, and they can cram “Ayers,” “Wright,” “Marxist,” “ACORN,” and “Rezko” into one sentence. And every sentence after that. It’s very impressive…in no way whatsoever.

Here’s a friendly bit of advice to all the diehard rightwingers waiting for the negative attacks to work (of course, some think they are working…this has a lot to do with their ability to see Obama leading by 8-10 points in every poll and conclude that he only has a 4 point lead): Every time you try the Ayers or Wright thing again, normal people simply hear, “We are the Whigs and our greatest days are ahead of us!”



Oct 15, 2008 in Uncategorized

Well…that was $200 billion well spent!


I sure he meant “kill him” in the most congenial way.

Oct 15, 2008 in Uncategorized

Wingers don’t seem to think that it’s a big deal that McCain supporters are calling for the lynching of Barack Obama but apparently the Secret Service does.


An Obama presidency would be a victory for the heathens.

Oct 15, 2008 in Uncategorized


Big ups to Iowa for showing that we’ve got just as many crazies as any other state.



Oct 15, 2008 in Uncategorized


“This old unions got problems
That is plain to see
The democrats bankrupted Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac
Like 1-2-3
The bankers didn’t want to make all those bad loans
Bill Clinton said “you got to!”
Now they wanna bail out
what I’m talking about
Is a democrat liberal hoodoo!”

Couldn’t have said it better myself! I would have kept the original lyrics about smoking pot, though.


Post like a Republican blogger!

Oct 15, 2008 in Uncategorized

Lets see if I can get this right:

Why is the conservative MSM ignoring the fact that McCain’s transition chief was a lobbyist for SADAM HUSSEIN!?!? McCain seems to have no problem hiring advisors that aid terrorists who are responsibile for the WTC terrorist act (NEVER FORGET)? The networks are obviously in the tank for McCain!


Be you a witch?

Oct 13, 2008 in Politics

National Review Online and their readers are ganging up on David Frum. David Frum?


Rumsfeld and his ties to Islamic terrorism.

Oct 13, 2008 in Uncategorized

Rumsfeld shakes hands with the biggest terrorist in history.


The radical right lapses into irrelevancy.

Oct 13, 2008 in Uncategorized

The radical right wing is completely lost in the woods and it’s easy to understand why. The economy along with their free-market theology are totally bankrupt. Their Obama-as-terrorist wishes were granted and the meme never gained traction with voters. In fact, if the polls are to be believed, the voters find their craven smears disgusting. Their ACORN/Rezko conspiracy theories are being promulgated only by the most deranged and delusional crack pots looking to relive the days of The Clenis. Even their Red State pin-up girl, Sarah Palin, has been completely ignored by everybody.

The radical, hate-mongers on the far right have failed and they haven’t even realized it yet. They’re either still waiting for that perfect Jeremiah Wright TV spot that’s going to save them all or convincing each other that McCain could have won had he the desire to do so. Their “proof” being that he stood up and actually behaved like a respectable human being and told his audience that Obama was not, in fact, a terrorist (though it appears the liberal Secret Service may have had something to do with his sudden lapse into decency).



Austrian Neo-Nazi politician dies of bad karma.

Oct 11, 2008 in Uncategorized

I remember Joerg Haider well from my year abroad in Austria, 1993-1994.

Oct 10th, 2008 | VIENNA, Austria — Austrian politician Joerg Haider, whose far-right rhetoric at times cast a negative light on the Alpine republic, has died in a car accident at age 58.

Police said the accident happened early Saturday morning in the south of the country when his car veered off the road near the city of Klagenfurt. He suffered severe injuries to his face and chest. It was not immediately clear if he died at the scene or in a hospital.

Haider, who was born Jan. 26, 1950, was governor of Carinthia and leader of the far-right Alliance for the Future of Austria at the time of his death.

“For us, it’s like the end of the world,” Haider’s spokesman, Stefan Petzner, told the Austria Press Agency.

In 1999, Haider raked in 27 percent of the vote in national elections as leader of the Freedom Party. The party’s subsequent inclusion in the government led to months of European Union sanctions over Haider’s statements, which were seen as anti-Semitic or sympathetic to Adolf Hitler’s labor policies. He had since significantly toned down his rhetoric.

Over the summer, Haider staged a comeback in national politics and helped his Alliance for the Future of Austia significantly improve their standing in Sept. 28 national elections.

Haider is survived by a wife and two daughters.

The usual inclination to respect the dead can be forsaken here; this guy was a Hitler-lovin’ scumbag and everybody knew it. But the right wing is the right wing, wherever you go…


Have I posted this video before?

Oct 10, 2008 in Uncategorized

Who cares, it’s great! See if you can do the dance…

[youtube 9oZRxAmQYZk]

Bluetones, “Slight Return”


Palin investigation results: Unlawful, unethical.

Oct 10, 2008 in Sarah Palin

No surprises:

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — Sarah Palin unlawfully abused her power as governor by trying to have her former brother-in-law fired as a state trooper, the chief investigator of an Alaska legislative panel concluded Friday. The politically charged inquiry imperiled her reputation as a reformer on John McCain’s Republican ticket.

Investigator Stephen Branchflower, in a report by a bipartisan panel that investigated the matter, found Palin in violation of a state ethics law that prohibits public officials from using their office for personal gain.

The inquiry looked into her dismissal of Public Safety Commissioner Walter Monegan, who said he lost his job because he resisted pressure to fire a state trooper involved in a bitter divorce with the governor’s sister. Palin says Monegan was fired as part of a legitimate budget dispute.

The report found that Palin let the family grudge influence her decision-making even if it was not the sole reason Monegan was dismissed. “I feel vindicated,” Monegan said. “It sounds like they’ve validated my belief and opinions. And that tells me I’m not totally out in left field.”

Branchflower said Palin violated a statute of the Alaska Executive Branch Ethics Act.

Palin and McCain’s supporters had hoped the inquiry’s finding would be delayed until after the presidential election to spare her any embarrassment and to put aside an enduring distraction as she campaigns as McCain’s running mate in an uphill contest against Democrat Barack Obama.

Palin was as obviously guilty as William Jefferson with his $90K in the freezer, yet McCain claimed he vetted her, later clumsily attempting to shut down the investigation. Republicans shrugged off the allegations and will shrug off the report, even though McCain’s camp persuaded several individuals to refrain from testifying against Palin (wonder if that will get investigated…), because they don’t care about the law or ethics and never have. She winks at them and sends starbursts through the TV, engages in cultural warfare, spurs angry hate mobs, and is resoundingly ignorant. Now we know for certain she is unethical (no surprise given her pathological lying) and willing to subvert the law and her authority for personal gain. In short, she’s astoundingly unqualified for the White House, and 100% qualified to be adored by this country’s deep-end diving rightwingers.


Socialism to the rescue!

Oct 10, 2008 in Uncategorized

I think this is one of those IOKIYAR things…or…we’re capitalists unless we need the government to bail us out…then we’re not.


I’m in Minneapolis this weekend talking shit about soon to be ex-Senator Norm Coleman. I’ll be here most of the time.


Oct 09, 2008 in Politics, The senility of John McCain

Politicians who yell at people, “Do you know who I am?” make us wish we didn’t.

McCain’s game is craps. So is Jeff Dearth’s. Jeff was at the table when McCain showed up and happily made room for him. Apparently there is some kind of rule or tradition in craps that everyone’s hands are supposed to be above the table when the dice are about to be thrown. McCain—“very likely distracted by one of the many people who approached him that evening,” Jeff says charitably—apparently was violating this rule. A small middle-aged woman at the table, apparently a “regular,” reached out and pulled McCain’s arm away. I’ll let Jeff take over the story:

“McCain immediately turned to the woman and said between clenched teeth: ‘DON’T TOUCH ME.’ The woman started to explain…McCain interrupted her: ‘DON’T TOUCH ME,’ he repeated viciously. The woman again tried to explain. ‘DO YOU KNOW WHO I AM? DO YOU KNOW WHO YOU’RE TALKING TO?’ McCain continued, his voice rising and his hands now raised in the ‘bring it on’ position. He was red-faced. By this time all the action at the table had stopped. I was completely shocked. McCain had totally lost it, and in the space of about ten seconds. ‘Sir, you must be courteous to the other players at the table,’ the pit boss said to McCain. “DO YOU KNOW WHO I AM? ASK ANYBODY AROUND HERE WHO I AM.”

This being Puerto Rico, the pit boss might not have known McCain. But the senator continued in full fury—“DO YOU KNOW WHO YOU’RE TALKING TO? DO YOU KNOW WHO I AM?”—and crisis was avoided only when Jeff offered to change places and stand between McCain and the woman who had touched his arm.

For the woman’s sake, I’m glad somebody stopped McCain before he pushed her.

We’ll do just fine without this guy in the White House.


Republicans in the wilderness.

Oct 09, 2008 in Clueless Conservatives

Apparently the cats over at National Review are going completely buggers over McCain’s apparent doom. Coupled with Palin’s hate rallies, the right is suffering from a serious affliction of PTD (politically transmitted diseases). Syphilitic politics is leading even supposedly “rational” (they’re not and never have been) institutions like National Review to engage in wild conspiracy theories that, let’s face it, will not end with Obama’s election. Fortunately, they fit the key characteristic of rightwing conspiracy theories: so absurd they’re automatically laughable to sane people, instantly discrediting those who propagate them. Hilzoy applies some logic salve:

This is delusional. It would be interesting to ask, for instance, why so few of Obama’s law students have come forward to talk about his attempt to transform them into Maoist cadres, or why the lawyers in his firm have not mentioned his commitment to cultural revolution, or how he has managed to conceal his desire to nationalize the means of production from, well, everyone. Was he secretly plotting to get asked, unexpectedly, to speak at the Democratic Convention, take a chance on running for President, and succeed, back when he was on the Harvard Law Review? That, plus absolutely iron self-control, might explain why no one caught a glimpse of Obama’s secret radicalism: he has been concealing it for decades, the better to bore away at our bourgeois institutions.

There’s only one problem with that hypothesis: if Obama were as stealthy as that, if he had lived a secret life for decades, completely concealing his inner Maoist, he would never, ever have blown his cover by getting on a board with William Ayers.

Rightwingers rarely became 9/11 truthers because they loved George W. Bush. No other reason.

Have fun in the jungle, boys and girls! Follow Rush Limbaugh into the Heart of Darkness!

The horror…the horror…


UPDATE: Ben Smith pinpoints the cornered panic some Republicans feel now that they’ve convinced themselves Obama is some radical terrorist-lover and they realize he’s about to become President. Choice quote:

But the sense that his presidency is imminent appears, to some minority of Republicans, to be essentially unacceptable. Whether because of his views, his race, his life story or his partisan affiliation, Obama doesn’t fit their model of a possible president of the United States. And so there’s a new urgency to the reaction against him.

McCain’s questioner in Wisconsin today put it clearly.

“We’re all wondering why Obama is where he’s at. How he got here. Everybody in this room is stunned we’re in this position,” he said.

If you’re like me, you’re starting to get really concerned about the threat of assassination. When the right starts boiling themselves in fury it doesn’t matter how insubstantial and illogical the reasons are. Obama could not be more conciliatory or friendly toward whites, and his entire campaign has thrown conservatives all sorts of warm fuzzies. The Republican base, facing defeat, is returning to its roots: angry, hateful, unhinged, irrational, tribalistic, and openly fond of violence as a solution. Civilized Americans are rejecting this Ayers nonsense, but to the right it’s a drop of Rage Virus-infested blood to the eyeball.

Barack Obama needs to be very careful about his public appearances, and Secret Service needs to double down on their protection. The unthinkable is being thought about a lot, and out loud.

Thomas Friedman never says anything worth a damn.

Oct 09, 2008 in Sarah Palin

Well, never say never:

I only wish she had been asked: “Governor Palin, if paying taxes is not considered patriotic in your neighborhood, who is going to pay for the body armor that will protect your son in Iraq? Who is going to pay for the bailout you endorsed? If it isn’t from tax revenues, there are only two ways to pay for those big projects — printing more money or borrowing more money. Do you think borrowing money from China is more patriotic than raising it in taxes from Americans?” That is not putting America first. That is selling America first.

Sorry, I grew up in a very middle-class family in a very middle-class suburb of Minneapolis, and my parents taught me that paying taxes, while certainly no fun, was how we paid for the police and the Army, our public universities and local schools, scientific research and Medicare for the elderly. No one said it better than Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes: “I like paying taxes. With them I buy civilization.”

In Palin’s defense, she still has no idea what she’s talking about. She just reads things and they make her wonder…


Barack Obama = terrorist.

Oct 09, 2008 in Uncategorized

Videos like this pop up and we’re treated to the usual list of excuses about how these are cherry-picked examples that are not representative of the party as a whole. Take a look at this and tell me that you don’t take these people’s words seriously:


Blogger Interrupted shot this video at a local McCain rally. Granted, those who speak up first and bellow the loudest are usually the dumbest among us but there is a bit of consistency to these types of outrageous claims/ideas.


Wait til You Hear This One

Oct 09, 2008 in Uncategorized

The people who like to make a big deal about “flip flops,” who’re really into CONSISTENCY and RELIABILITY and STRENGTH and so on? They would like you to just forget all that while they issue this “correction”, which reverses their earlier position. You see, it was a matter of language, not intention. The earlier draft, which said the exact opposite of what the new draft says, was merely a misstatement of the candidate’s position.

I don’t know, man. I’m beginning to think you Republican types aren’t taking this election seriously. It’s not a scrimmage. You have to actually have an opinion on an issue before you go running off at the mouth about it. Anyway, the question stands: Republicans are the ones who abhor “flip flops,” right? This is a within-24-hours “flip flop.” Y’all still real into the whole notion of consistency?

Obama’s gonna win, dog gonnit!

Oct 08, 2008 in Uncategorized

Gallup has McCain eleven points behind “that one”. Here’s an aggregate:

I’m still holding out hope for that killer Ayers/Wright television commercial that’s going to launch McCain forward in the final hour.


Don’t Hold Your Breath

Oct 07, 2008 in Uncategorized

The question Catholics must ask Sarah Palin. Conservative Catholics, to their permanent shame, will sell out their faith to people who think they’re pagans before they’ll vote for somebody who doesn’t think the Church’s position on abortion should be written into law. I have a word for Catholics who vote Republican – “Protestant.”

The last dying gasp of the McCain campaign.

Oct 07, 2008 in Barack Obama, Old Man McCain

Joe Klein pals around with terrorists!

Over the weekend, she picked up on an article in The New York Times, which essentially says that Barack Obama and the former terrorist Bill Ayers have crossed paths in Chicago, served on a couple of charitable boards together, but aren’t particularly close. To Palin–or her scriptwriters–this means that Obama has been “palling around” with terrorists. Now, I wish Ayers had done some serious jail time; he certainly needed to pay some penance for his youthful criminality–even if most people in Chicago, including the mayor, have decided that he has something of value to say about education. But I can also understand how Obama, who was a child when Ayers was cutting his idiot swath, would not quite understand the enormity of the professor’s background. (I got to know Alger Hiss twenty years after the fact–he was a printing salesman then, a friend of my father’s–and thought of him as a sweet old man, if a good deal more liberal than dad’s other friends.)

Joe Klein is tired of enabling John McCain. There is no more parity, no more half-dozen/six-of-the-other, no false balance. Nobody can respect him anymore. And nobody can be fooled by a campaign out of ideas, out of inspiration, out of purpose beyond senseless vanity. If John McCain had any honor left, he’d spend his last month puttering around the country being nice and hoping there was a softening of hearts towards his pitiful self. Instead, he hardens them with scurrilous and baseless charges. In politics, your darkest instincts are often the most counter-productive.


Why it’s always worth it to see what those fools on ISCA are blabbing about…

Oct 06, 2008 in Barack Obama, Politics, Sarah Palin

Good man WORF dips into Inside Politics> on ISCA to deliver a smackdown:

Ayers was a radical during the Vietnam War, he never killed anyone and he spent
time in jail. In the time since he’s gone on to become a college professor and
work against poverty and increasing school funding.

Obama and Ayers both served on the board of the Woods Fund of Chicago which
works with non-profit organizations to help reduce local poverty. It’s been
around since 1941. They also both served on the board of the Chicago Annenberg
Challenge which is a non-profit that gives grants to schools.

Now, if you do not believe that working to reduce poverty and increase private
grant money to schools is a good thing, then feel free to condemn Obama for
those efforts.

If you do not believe that a man (Ayers) who has gone through the justice
system can be rehabilitated (the point of the justice system after all) but is
instead forever marred by his illegal actions then feel free to condemn him.

If you believe that one should forgo working for educational funding and
working against poverty simply because someone else who once committed a crime
is also working for the same thing, then feel free to condemn Obama for it.

But if you do all these things, then you will also need to condemn McCain for
supporting his wife’s illegal drug habit and continuing his close association
with a lawbreaker. You’ll also need to condemn Palin for continuing her close
association with a convicted criminal (editor’s note: and Alaskan secessionist),
since Todd Palin has a DUI.

…unless of course you are applying different standards.

I’d also add that if you believe all of those things, don’t check any variety of “Christian” on any questionnaire that asks you your religion. “WWJD” is clearly the last thing on your mind if you’re talking about Barack Obama and Ayers. Obama served on a board that distributed money to schools, that’s his “palling around with terrorists!” the intellectually depraved Sarah Palin spouts (although you must forgive her, for she knows not what she says). She’s so tough, she’s not afraid to run from the press. If anybody shouldn’t be casting the first stone, it’s her.


Meanwhile, in Republican la-la land.

Oct 06, 2008 in Uncategorized

In their stampede to blame the recent financial meltdown on LIBRULZ these guys can’t decide whether they think that regulations are good, bad, who was for them or who was against them:

We as a group elected people who through social intervention created a market that required this crisis to take place. Dodd, Kennedy, Frank, Watt and the others represent the just the latest in a long line of social engineers that stretch back over 60 years.

They have busily shaped markets with regulations. They created one through the GSEs and the CRA and its subsequent legislation. The market just took advantage of it as it will always naturally do. Now when you tamper with markets they tend to fail eventually. This one did. Then a number of so called ‘fiscal conservatives’ in and out of office wanted to get laissez faire on the market’s ass. Where were they when it was happening?

I challenge anybody to try and make sense out of this horse-shit. Sharon thinks that modifying a bailout plan so that tax-payers pay less for the private profits of hedge-fund jockeys is anti-capitalistic and pgwarner thinks that the market takes advantage of legislative circumstances created by the Democrats. Is it any wonder that the voting public doesn’t trust these people with their wallets?

One more flip-flop from the Straight Talk Express.

Oct 06, 2008 in Uncategorized


Faced with the reality that he can’t win an election on the issues, John McCain is reving up Sarah Palin to go and do his dirty work for him even though, if what he says in this clip is an honest indication, he doesn’t believe what she is saying. Wingers are drooling over the prospect of running the type of smear-campaign that they’ve grown accustomed to over the past twenty years but it seems more likely to backfire. If they start whipping up Ayers/Wright hysteria they risk inflating the same type of bubble that brought down Palin. Disappointment would have been significantly less had the McCain campaign not over-inflated people’s expectations of her because once she veered off of the Matt Scully script she looked like a rube or, as they say in Texas, all hat and no saddle. This campaign has two more debates to go and when the public watches Barack Obama in front of the key-lights they will not see an AK-47 toting terrorist like the dittoheads hope they will. The Ayers/Wright fiasco is an anachronistic fantasy dreamt up as a last resort by a completely bankrupt campaign.


Economists for Obama

Oct 05, 2008 in Economy, Politics

Pretty bloody sensible, don’t you imagine?

The detailed responses are bad news for Mr McCain (the full data are available here). Eighty per cent of respondents and no fewer than 71% of those who do not cleave to either main party say Mr Obama has a better grasp of economics. Even among Republicans Mr Obama has the edge: 46% versus 23% say Mr Obama has the better grasp of the subject.

The McCain camp has, somewhat clumsily, announced its intentions: change the subject. We cannot talk about the economy, because that will hurt John McCain’s chances.

The Arizonan’s campaign is also eager to move the conversation away from the economy, an issue that strongly favors Obama and has helped him to a lead in many recent polls.

“We’re going to get a little tougher,” a senior Republican operative said, indicating that a fresh batch of television ads is coming. “We’ve got to question this guy’s associations. Very soon. There’s no question that we have to change the subject here,” said the operative, who was not authorized to discuss strategy and spoke on the condition of anonymity.

There is no “Country First,” with McCain. He may even know himself, deep down, that Barack Obama is better suited to deal with the country’s economic woes than he is, but still, he keeps trying to complete his vanity project. McCain still believes he is entitled to the Presidency. It’s not about you, and never has been. Look out for yourselves, look out for the country, and don’t waste a second worrying about John McCain’s disappointment that he didn’t get to be President.


If you remember, bin Laden did this to the Soviets too…

Oct 05, 2008 in Clueless Conservatives, War on Terra

Economic destabilization was always part of bin Laden’s plan, you’ll remember.

Last night on Bill Maher, the comedian Gary Shandling, of all people, synthesized the connection between our current economic crisis and 9/11 and the Iraq War in a way I have not heard:

On 9/11, Al Qaeda had no expectation of a traditional military victory against the United States. The point of the attack was economic — to draw the U.S. into expensive and protracted foreign wars that would deplete our resources and destabilize our government. By invading Iraq, George Bush became the happy idiot to assist Al Qaeda in this goal. Now, Sarah Palin and John McCain take the leaders of Al Qaeda at their word when they say Iraq is the major front in the war on terror.

Neither consider the possibility that Al Qaeda wants Iraq to be the major front because it furthers their goal of weakening the U.S. while inflicting minimal damage on their operations.

Seven years after 9/11, we are seeing Al Qaeda’s long-term goal being realized: the destabilization and economic collapse of the United States. Even as it’s happening, the people who supported it all along want to continue facilitating our own long-term disintegration by clinging to simplistic concepts of traditional military victory and defeat. In this sense, they are possibly the most myopic, least strategic thinkers in the history of this nation.

As Gary Shandling said, with this approach, our only hope of killing Osama Bin Laden is that he’ll laugh himself to death.

The happy idiot George W. Bush, talking of honor and victory…but what the excuses of those surrounding him, steeped in learning and history, the neocon dreamers?


A single albeit large tea leaf.

Oct 05, 2008 in Uncategorized points out how difficult it is for a trailing candidate to beat a rival that has 50% in October.

Using Gallup’s compendium of presidential trial heat polling since 1936, I counted 16 candidates who received 50% support or higher in an October Gallup poll. Hitting the 50% mark was a very good predictor of victory. Of those 16 candidates, just two failed to win the general election–Al Gore and Thomas Dewey.

With the invocation of William Ayers and the oft-predicted but never seen “Palin Bounce” it would appear that things are working out well for Obama. Nobody except the most die-hard Rezko-Ayers conspiracy theorists are paying any attention to the NYT story. The same can be said for Palin’s cocktail waitress act. She appeals only to the radical base who are eager to embrace whatever sloganeering, smirking ignoramus the party trots out in front of the teleprompter. One thing is for certain; the old playbook isn’t working anymore. We all knew that six months ago but don’t tell a Republican because as long as they keep waiting around for McCain to release that perfect Jeremiah Wright commercial that will once and for all destroy Obama the election is in the bag.



Oct 04, 2008 in Uncategorized

You hear that wheezing sound? It’s the air slowly leaking out of the Palin Bubble.


Dittoheads rejoice! You got your coveted Bill Ayers story.

Oct 04, 2008 in Uncategorized

On the front page of the most librulist newspaper of all time; the New York Times, no less.

The wingers convinced themselves long ago that if the public only knew about Ayers and Rezko the presidential race would be over. Americans from coast to coast would realize that not only did Obama once accept a donation from a serial contributor/slum lord in the Chicago area (machine politics!!), he also served on a board with a washed up sixties radical! The problem is that there is nothing there to kick any dust up over. Not even enough to get Richard Mellon Scaife to open up his wallet.

Not that it matters to the conspiracy theorists of the radical right but Obama didn’t win this election because of sinister cabals and secret, back room dealings. He won it by developing a solid ground game, a reliable fund raising apparatus, and a consistent message. Compare this to the McCain campaign who were granted the nomination simply because he was the last man standing. His fund raising was stalled for months even during the period when it was uncertain whether the Dem nominee would be Hillary or Barack. McCain was unsuccessful in building any brand value until the convention and even that was a variation on Obama’s well established theme.

In the short weeks ahead you’re going to see a desperate John McCain. The commercials coming out will be 100% negative and McCain himself will seem impatient and worn out. The online devoted are already talking in circles and wasting their time preaching to the choir about how the responsibility for the sour economy (after saying for months that the economy was terrific) rests solely on, you guessed it, the liberals (as if they didn’t believe that already). The most they can muster are abstract references to “gotcha” journalism, tired innuendo about the media liberal elites and Clinton bashing (in 2008!). Only until after the election will people realize just how fractured and disorganized the Republicans really were. At this point all Obama has to do is keep doing what he’s been doing; staying on message, positive, and issue oriented and he hasn’t done anything so far to indicate that he’s going to stray from that formula.


FOX News poll: Biden won.

Oct 03, 2008 in Uncategorized

Don’t believe me? Look for yourself.


Ask an independent voter.

Oct 03, 2008 in Uncategorized

CNN and CBS did and they handed the victory to Biden.

It is pretty clear at this point that Sarah Palin appeals only to the base, which is fine, but the McCain campaign can’t win without the help of independent voters who, unlike the radical right wing, base their voting preferences on criteria other than spunk and a “can-do” attitude.

Have you read a Republican blog lately? There are a lot of long faces, folks. They put all of their chips down on winning this election by flogging their boogeymen; Wright, Rezko and Ayers and whining about the “liberal media” and now that the playbook that has served them so well over the past two decades has proven inadequate they’re stuck with stuffing all of their hopes into an empty-pantsuit.

If you didn’t know it before then last night drove the point home; Palin is a “real” American from “real” America not one of those “elitists” with all of their dog-gone facts and figures and stuff! Don’t we know it.


Great victory! Sarah Palin didn’t drool on her cue cards!

Oct 03, 2008 in Sarah Palin

Anybody halfway serious knows Joe Biden came prepared to debate and Sarah Palin came determined to impersonate a debater. Rehearsed talking points, repetition of “reform” and “maverick” and “change” without any substance whatsoever…it completely failed to influence independents that she was anything more than marginally improved over her recent interviews. She was allowed to speechify and asked few follow-up questions that would have forced her to go more than an inch-deep on any subject whatsoever. “Doggone it!” “Say it ain’t so, Joe!” (Oh, I bet the debate team was high-fiving themselves for coming up with that one…pity she blew it), “What have I been at this for, five weeks?” “I may not answer the questions the way you big Washington fancypants want me to, what with your things about coherence and, um, answering the questions…” “Hey I love that question, let me talk about taxes instead!” Facts? Nowhere to be found.

Naturally, the right is thrilled!

Sarah Palin just field dressed Joe Biden like a moose. She was awesome. She connected with the people. She had fun. She was relaxed. She was awesome.

Hey, Erick Erickson: You’re an awesome idiot!

Michelle Malkin wants to join in on your idiot party!

First, I would like to see all the Sarah doubters and detractors in the Beltway/Manhattan corridor eat their words.
Eat them.
Sarah Palin is the real deal. Five weeks on the campaign trail, thrust onto the national stage, she rocked tonight’s debate.
She was warm, fresh, funny, confident, energetic, personable, relentless, and on message. She roasted Obama’s flip-flops on the surge and tea-with-dictators declarations, dinged Biden’s bash-Bush rhetoric, challenged the blame-America defeatism of the Left, and exuded the sunny optimism that energized the base in the first place…
…Sarah Palin looked presidential.
Joe Biden looked tired.
Sarah made history.
Biden is history.

GO TEAM! I must eat my words, because she was so bestest ever! She repeated the “blame game” catchphrase used whenever anybody points out that George W. Bush is the worst president in history and that John McCain intends to follow up with round three. BTW, I’m going to go rob a bank, and when the judge tries to sentence me, I’m gonna tell him not to play the blame game, and look toward the future like me! Sarah Palin managed to successfully read all her cue-cards without crying, so me go be happy now. GO SARAH YOU ROCK omigod so happy…

Jay Reding is serious big thinker, weigh in with heavy thoughts:

Joe Biden is losing this thing for Obama. He is coming off as a pretentious jerk.

Palin is not at all as polished as Biden, but she’s coming off as authentic. She doesn’t have full command of the debate, but she’s not just making things up like Biden has been all night.

All in all, this is a slaughter. Not necessarily because of what Palin is doing, but because Biden is coming off so badly.

Aww, Jay, you were all ready to throw your “Joe Biden was a bullying ass to Sarah Palin” party, and nobody showed up, but you’re gonna throw it anyway. And nothing spells authentic more than memorizing rehearsed non-answers other people provided for you. Those times we saw her talking off the top of her head? MEDIA FILTER. It’s only when Sarah Palin is provided with numerous crutches that we see who she really is. And she’s so neat!

Joking aside, the fundamental unseriousness of the right simply cannot be overstated. They have completely lost the ability to think, perhaps in solidarity with Palin. Sarah Palin’s performance tonight only compared favorably to her disastrous interviews. If she hadn’t walked in with a massive handicap, it would rightly be seen as a disaster. Those who have been worried about where George W. Bush has taken the nation and how to deal with the issues in front of us know Palin was simply unacceptable.

Joe Biden came ready, and without rudeness or condescension, drove home reality again and again. Palin was unable to respond to any of his rebuttals with anything other than repeating her initial charges. Well, guess what, Mrs. Palin? Children learn to say, “Nuh-uh” around the age of 2. Those in the White House need to do a little better than that.

Joe Biden had the facts, the judgment, and he had the middle class appeal. It takes more than a bunch of “Gosh darn” and “Doggone it” to let people you’re out there for them. He put up a wall that Palin could only perform antics in front of. Yes, the people that brought you George W. Bush were pleased, and I can’t think of any better standard for rejecting her 100% in November.


You shut up with your big city facts!

Oct 02, 2008 in Politics, Sarah Palin

Ever notice that it’s perfectly acceptable for Republican politicians running for federal office to write off a state like Massachusetts (6.4 million people) or a city like San Francisco (776K people, more than all of Alaska), as if they weren’t really America, much less under federal jurisdiction? Or how about dismissing the “blue coastal elites,” (population 125 million just in coastal watersheds)?

Reason (aghast!) dismantles some myths of small town snobbery, perpetuated by big city politicians even though “small town” describes only 1/5 of the US population because even big city people like to romanticize rural America.

Maybe if they ventured beyond the city limits more often, those people would not be so inclined to believe everything they hear about the merits of rustic hamlets, which harbor a full complement of social ills.

Not everyone in rural America gets high on fresh air and the smell of new-mown hay. Illicit drugs are nearly as common out there as they are in cities and suburbs.

In 2007, a survey of 8th graders by the Monitoring the Future project at the University of Michigan found that country kids were 26 percent more likely to experiment with drugs than middle-schoolers elsewhere. Overall methamphetamine consumption among adults and teens is more than 50 percent higher in the country.

The story with alcohol is worse still. “Relative to their urban counterparts, rural youth ages 12 to 17 are significantly more likely to report consuming alcohol,” says a 2006 study by the Carsey Institute at the University of New Hampshire. Excessive boozing among adults, it noted, appears to be no less widespread in Mayberry than in Metropolis.

Nor is the countryside exempt from social problems often associated with the inner city—such as, if you’ll forgive me, out-of-wedlock births. The federal government apparently doesn’t tabulate these births according to whether they occur in urban or rural areas. But it does break them down by state, and wide-open spaces are no guarantee of responsible sexual behavior.

The highest rates of births to unwed mothers are in Mississippi and New Mexico, both of which have high rural populations. The most urban states, New Jersey and California, do better than the average in out-of-wedlock births.

Mike and I grew up in a rural Iowa town as small as they get. We were responsible for some hell-raising and bad behavior, but we were pretty tame compared to some of the kids we went to school with (we were late bloomers when it came to booze and sex). Given that our time predates the scourge of meth, we might have a rosier view of small town life in Iowa than is likely warranted today. As for the debauchery going on in college towns, you don’t even want to know. Well, unless you’re in one…

The point is that small-town folks aren’t necessarily better than big-city folks. I know lots of good and moral people in the urban sprawl of Southern California, people who anybody could learn from. One could argue they possess a “small town frame of mind,” but that’s pretty close to a no-true-Scotsman fallacy. The prevalence of good Americans in big cities means that a city frame of mind must possess its own virtues as well, or possibly be neutral morally (given that you interact with people every day you’ve never met, you’re very likely to produce a code of behavior that is applicable to all). Yet it’s fair game in politics to deride and insult the majority of Americans who live in cities.

Republicans have perpetuated this in order to get votes and advantage in the big sparsely populated states, taking a country where those states already had a lot of political punch and dividing it for their own personal gain. Tonight, Sarah Palin, a proven liar, will take to the stage and undoubtedly spout some vague claptrap about how she loves the “real hardworking” Americans in those small towns, but as anybody from a small town can tell you, we’ve got some slimeball liars too. There’s the usual salesmen, drunks and thugs, but you can find the Sarah Palin type easy, crashing school boards or taking a check to lobby for some big company to build a hog factory upwind of your peaceful country home. Them small towns got the same DNA as them fancy cats in the big city, folks. Human nature prevails.


McCain is dropping out of Michigan.

Oct 02, 2008 in Uncategorized

This one’s gotta hurt.


Whoops, hey, no, keep your kid, really we didn’t mean that! Fire up the legislature again!

Oct 02, 2008 in Culture

The tragicomedy of unintended results plays out in Nebraska:

OMAHA — The abandonments began on Sept. 1, when a mother left her 14-year-old son in a police station here.

By Sept. 23, two more boys and one girl, ages 11 to 14, had been abandoned in hospitals in Omaha and Lincoln. Then a 15-year-old boy and an 11-year-old girl were left.

The biggest shock to public officials came last week, when a single father walked into an Omaha hospital and surrendered nine of his 10 children, ages 1 to 17, saying that his wife had died and he could no longer cope with the burden of raising them.

In total last month, 15 older children in Nebraska were dropped off by a beleaguered parent or custodial aunt or grandmother who said the children were unmanageable.

Officials have called the abandonments a misuse of a new law that was mainly intended to prevent so-called Dumpster babies — the abandonment of newborns by young, terrified mothers — but instead has been used to hand off out-of-control teenagers or, in the case of the father of 10, to escape financial and personal despair.

Whether it be deals with Satan, wishes from a monkey’s paw, or writing legislation, always be very specific about what you want…



Oct 02, 2008 in Sarah Palin

Naw, Palin again

While suturing a cut on the hand of a 75 year old rancher, who’s hand was caught in the gate while working cattle, the doctor struck up a conversation with the old man. Eventually the topic got around to Palin and her bid.

The old rancher said, “Well, ya know, Palin is a Post Turtle'”.

Not being familiar with the term, the doctor asked him what a ‘post turtle’ was.

The old rancher said, “When you’re driving down a country road you come across a fence post with a turtle balanced on top, that’s a ‘post turtle”.

The old rancher saw the puzzled look on the doctor’s face so he continued to explain. “You know she didn’t get up there by herself, she doesn’t belong up there, and she doesn’t know what to do while she’s up there, and you just wonder what kind of dummy put her up there to begin with”.

Okay, some McCain there at the end…after all, can you imagine who else he’d appoint if he’d hire Palin? I mean, besides “Architect of the Economic Meltdown” Phil Gramm as Secretary of the Treasury?

Bonus: Letterman’s Top Ten Things Said At Palin’s Debate Practice:

10. “Let’s practice your bewildered silence.”
9. “Can you try saying ‘yes’ instead of ‘you betcha’?”
8. “Hey, I can see Mexico from here!”
7. “Maybe we’ll get lucky and there won’t be any questions about Iraq, taxes or healthcare.”
6. “We’re screwed!”
5. “Can I just use that lipstick-pit bull thing again?”
4. “We have to wrap it up for the day — McCain eats dinner at 4:30.”
3. “Can we get Congress to bail us out of this debate?”
2. “John Edwards wants to know if you’d like some private tutoring in his van.”
1. “Any way we can just get Tina Fey to do it?”


Conservatives surely don’t send vile hate mail to those they disagree with.

Oct 02, 2008 in Uncategorized

Only liberals do such things. They’re the meanies. Conservatives politely disagree with people and make logical arguments, liberals send death threats and call names.

Allow me to introduce myself. I am a traitor and an idiot. Also, my mother should have aborted me and left me in a dumpster, but since she didn’t, I should “off” myself.

Those are a few nuggets randomly selected from thousands of e-mails written in response to my column suggesting that Sarah Palin is out of her league and should step down.

Who says public discourse hasn’t deteriorated?

The fierce reaction to my column has been both bracing and enlightening. After 20 years of column writing, I’m familiar with angry mail. But the past few days have produced responses of a different order. Not just angry, but vicious and threatening.

Some of my usual readers feel betrayed because I previously have written favorably of Palin. By changing my mind and saying so, I am viewed as a traitor to the Republican Party — not a “true” conservative.

Allow me to blow your mind: this isn’t about ideology. People of any ideology can get very angry, bitter, and threatening. Fundamentalism in any belief system can lead to a furious e-mail or blog comment. Hell, the nature of the Internets itself can lead one to write all sorts of things one would never say in person to any but close friends. Thus, blogging!

Unfortunately, the right seems determined to keep saying that “This is the left, that’s what they are, they’re horrible people!” Bill O’Reilly wouldn’t have anything to say if it weren’t for this line. He talks about Daily Kos like it’s the Charlie Manson pad, which makes no sense to anybody who actually reads the site regularly. Sean Hannity, who really is a frighteningly ignorant tool except that he knows exactly what he’s doing, talks about the “hateful left” all the time. Where do they get this? A few samples from blog comments or an angry diarist here and there, bingo. Bring up Michael Savage and his 8 million listeners though, and they’ll swear they’ve never heard his show.

What’s most interesting about Kathleen Parker’s column, however, is the shocking ignorance displayed in the defenses of Sarah Palin, which are no less stupid than anything Michael Gerson has written about her “values.” She’s been ambushed, she’s not been allowed to “be Sarah,” her rambling idiocy is charming because it’s not “polished,” etc. These people have nothing, and have given up defending her as a vice-presidential candidate in any way that relates to her ability to take over the country if John McCain deteriorates in office or passes away. It’s all, “She nice lady!”

Parker hyperventilates a bit:

Readers have every right to reject my opinion. But when we decide that a person is a traitor and should die for having an opinion different from one’s own, we cross into territory that puts all freedoms at risk.

Well, not really. “Drop dead,” in an e-mail doesn’t put anybody’s freedom’s at risk. “I’ll track you down and kill you!” does, and anybody who writes that should be prosecuted (though I’ve received death threats from online debates before, and the cops laughed at me). Andrew Sullivan mentions that Parker should see his inbox, and I’ve no doubt that fella receives the worst of the worst, being an openly gay conservative. Being a “traitor” is one thing, but being a gay one? He’s lucky he isn’t dead already, being the undeclared leader of GOP-defecting conservatives. But it’s important to put things in perspective.

What’s most damning is that the rambling of Sean Hannity, Hugh Hewitt, and other apparatchik GOP buffoons is that at the core, they don’t have any better a case for Palin, and don’t have a better response than “traitor” to conservatives who speak the plain truth about her. She’s going to get up there tonight, and if she manages to halfway pull it off it’ll be by successfully saying nothing real whatsoever. The format may allow her to speechify and her cramming may have given her enough soundbites to pivot to whenever she’s asked a question. It hasn’t worked so far, but maybe tonight she’ll manage to not completely embarrass herself. And these true buffoons will hail her victorious.

My suspicion, however, is that independents won’t be fooled by mere survival, or some snappy put-downs spread out over a whole lotta nothin’. The curtain has already been pulled back, and we’ve seen the Empress’s firm backside. And we’ve seen who’s been wooed by empty titillation and vacuous prattling. They who loved the fool Bush now love the fool Palin, because they see mirror reflections of their foolish selves. The fate of the country is entirely irrelevant.


Would it be a “gotcha” exam if I failed my driver’s test?

Oct 02, 2008 in Uncategorized

It wasn’t that long ago that Barack Obama was being lampooned by the Howler Monkeys that comprise the Republican blogosphere (can we please stop referring to them as conservatives?) as an empty-shirt who would crumble as soon as the teleprompters were turned off. What a difference a few months makes. Now that Obama has shown himself to be a very capable debater who is able to formulate nuanced and thoughtful opinions the Howler Monkeys are back to their usual MO; simpering about liberal media bias and “gotcha” journalism when the questions get too difficult (“what do you read?” being a real brain buster, apparently) or the slogans (“Thanks, but no thanks!”) start falling flat. It looks like John Q Public isn’t buying their bullshit, either:

Though she initially transformed the race with her energizing presence and a fiery convention speech, Palin is now a much less positive force: Six in 10 voters see her as lacking the experience to be an effective president, and a third are now less likely to vote for McCain because of her.

A month ago, voters rated Palin as highly as they did McCain or his Democratic rival, Sen. Barack Obama, but after weeks of intensive coverage and several perceived missteps, the shine has diminished.

You see, the press is doing their jobs when they dutifully report the right-wing talking points but when they start to ask questions like “How does living across a body of water from Russia count as foreign policy experience”, a claim that she made, the liberal press needs to shut the fuck up and leave that poor woman alone!


McCain vs. The Des Moines Register!

Oct 01, 2008 in Iowa, Politics, Sarah Palin, Uncategorized

Completely oblivious to reality? Naw, he’s just lying through his teeth:

He doesn’t know Palin’s favorability ratings have plunged through the floor? He doesn’t know prominent conservatives and other professionals have written her off? Of course he does. Of course, he might be completely clueless and out of touch, but odds are he’s just a plain old liar like he’s proven himself to be. He had to go hold Palin’s hand to protect her from OMZGODKATIECOURIC, rambling about “gotcha journalism” when Palin was caught red-handed backing up Obama’s position (which, it should be noted, has already become the Bush administration’s position, as Obama is the real leader on foreign policy).

McCain’s campaign is a trainwreck and that’s why he’s behind by massive margins in the battleground states. What’s he going to do, go scold every journalist who dares point out what everybody knows? Damage control up until Nov. 4th is a strategy?

Common sense must prevail.


Forgot about these mega-LULZ-worthy comments:

NPR: Given what you’ve said Senator, is there an occasion where you could imagine turning to Governor Palin for advice in a foreign policy crisis.

MCCAIN: I’ve turned to her advice many times in the past…


Palin will win just by showing up.

Oct 01, 2008 in Uncategorized

Expectations have never been lower for a VP candidate but political junkies and amateur pundits are dead-wrong if they think that Palin is going to get her ass handed to her. Granted, she has difficulty cobbling together even the most casual analysis of current events when the teleprompter isn’t present but the fact is that the debate format wont require her to expand her answers beyond rattling off the usual slogans and bulletpoints:

Sarah Palin might not give a good interview, and John McCain’s advisers might not trust her to give a press conference, but in a highly structured debate like the one we are going to see on Thursday night, she has the ability to be dominant.

Because the format allows for very little give-and-take between Palin and Joe Biden, her “values”-oriented debating style stands a good chance of succeeding. The central feature of her debate style is that rather than getting bogged down in facts and specifics, she instead says what she is for and what she is against using terms like “healthier,” “stronger,” “more prosperous,” and “fairer.”

Andrew Halcro, who has debated her, explains his experiences debating Palin:

“I’ve debated Governor Palin more than two dozen times. And she’s a master, not of facts, figures, or insightful policy recommendations, but at the fine art of the nonanswer, the glittering generality. Against such charms there is little Senator Biden, or anyone, can do.”

The Republicans can’t win on the issues this November so it’s only natural that Palin will attempt to make the debate as issue free and as non-specific as possible. That’s precisely the reason that she was brought on as the VP candidate. Furthermore, Joe Biden is staring down a lose – lose situation here. If he engages her in the least he’ll be castigated as a sexist thug. If he demures the McCain campaign will crow about Biden getting beaten by a girl proving that Palin has the sass and brass to sit at the big kids table.