Thursday, July 31, 2008
This may remind some of the energy crisis we encountered during Jimmy Carter's Administration. His solution? Put on a sweater and turn down the thermostat in winter.
Did you hear the laughter in the background? Obama's own voters don't take this preening, overreaching former community organizer seriously!
Wednesday, July 30, 2008
Long before February when Barack Obama said "We are the ones we've been waiting for" the general impression of Obama among even some in the media is that for an inexperienced junior Senator, the former community organizer, Obama thinks pretty highly of himself.
An ego in politics is nothing new. But if you get to the point where late night comedians are wondering if we should bother holding an election at all because Obama already thinks he's won (see the Daily Show's Jon Stewart, or David Letterman's Top Ten list) you might be in a bit of trouble.
Obama's faux presidential seal was just one example of overreaching. A no less telling example was replacing the American flag on Obama's campaign plane with his "O" symbol.
Months before both those examples, Ron Fournier writing for the Associated Press had this to say:
The Trouble With Obama's Arrogance
By RON FOURNIER
March 18, 2008
...The dictionary defines the word as an "offensive display of superiority or self-importance; overbearing pride." Mr. Obama may not be offensive or overbearing, but he can be a bit too cocky for his own good.
[B]oth Mr. Obama and his wife, Michelle, ooze a sense of entitlement.
"Barack is one of the smartest people you will ever encounter who will deign to enter this messy thing called politics," his wife said a few weeks ago, adding that Americans will get only one chance to elect him.
If arrogance is a display of self-importance and superiority, Mr. Obama earns the pejorative every time he calls his pre-invasion opposition to the war in Iraq an act of courage.
Nobody expects Mr. Obama to be perfect. But he better never forget that he isn't.
And who can forget that on the day he finally nudged Hillary Clinton from the race Obama gave a speech where he declared: "this was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal." Is it any wonder people call him messianic? You half expected him to raise Moses's staff to the wind and demand the waters recede right on the spot.
Then of course there was his World Obama Tour and the political rally in Berlin where it seemed he was running for Class President of the world when he said: "People of Berlin – people of the world – this is our moment. This is our time." As I noted at the time, columnist Charles Krauthammer summed it up best: "For the first few months of the campaign, the question about Obama was: Who is he? The question now is: Who does he think he is?"
As the glow started to fade from Obama's magical mystery tour, new questions were raised:
Arrogance Will Not Help Get Obama ElectedElevating the issue of Obama's arrogance two or three notches higher, Dana Milbank writes in Wednesday's Washington Post:
By Susan Estrich
Friday, July 25, 2008
In the prayer he left at the Western Wall, Senator Obama asked the Lord to protect him from pride and despair. Maybe he should have added something about protecting his campaign from the related danger of arrogance. It might be the biggest threat to Obama’s success.
“They think they can’t lose,” one of the smartest people I know said to me this week, describing the attitude he sees on display in the Obama campaign. He isn’t the first one to say it.
President Obama Continues Hectic Victory TourPresident in waiting describes Obama perfectly. But it may also backfire big time. If Independent voters who didn't always respond well to President Bush's swagger don't buy the preening, overreaching hubris of a clearly inexperienced candidate Obama may find it even more difficult to close the sale than he did in the primaries with members of his own party.
By Dana Milbank
Wednesday, July 30, 2008; Page: A03
Barack Obama has long been his party's presumptive nominee. Now he's becoming its presumptuous nominee.
Fresh from his presidential-style world tour, during which foreign leaders and American generals lined up to show him affection, Obama settled down to some presidential-style business in Washington yesterday. He ordered up a teleconference with the (current president's) Treasury secretary, granted an audience to the Pakistani prime minister and had his staff arrange for the chairman of the Federal Reserve to give him a briefing. Then, he went up to Capitol Hill to be adored by House Democrats in a presidential-style pep rally.
Along the way, he traveled in a bubble more insulating than the actual president's. Traffic was shut down for him as he zoomed about town in a long, presidential-style motorcade, while the public and most of the press were kept in the dark about his activities, which included a fundraiser at the Mayflower where donors paid $10,000 or more to have photos taken with him. His schedule for the day, announced Monday night, would have made Dick Cheney envious.
As he marches toward Inauguration Day (Election Day is but a milestone on that path), Obama's biggest challenger may not be Republican John McCain but rather his own hubris.
Some say the supremely confident Obama -- nearly 100 days from the election, he pronounces that "the odds of us winning are very good" -- has become a president-in-waiting. But in truth, he doesn't need to wait: He has already amassed the trappings of the office, without those pesky decisions.
In the latest issue of the New Republic, Gabriel Sherman found reporters complaining that Obama's campaign was "acting like the Prom Queen" and being more secretive than Bush. The magazine quoted the New York Times' Adam Nagourney's reaction to the Obama campaign's memo attacking one of his stories: "I've never had an experience like this, with this campaign or others."
Even Bush hasn't tried that. But then again, Obama has been outdoing the president in ruffles and flourishes lately. As Bush held quiet signing ceremonies in the White House yesterday morning, Obama was involved in a more visible display of executive authority a block away, when he met with Pakistani Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gillani at the Willard. A full block of F Street was shut down for the prime minister and the would-be president, and some 40 security and motorcade vehicles filled the street.
And while the first nationwide poll to be completed after Obama's trip showed that voters thought both candidates were arrogant (Obama 37%, McCain 34%) "44 percent said they believed that Obama was "acting as if he had already won the election," far more than the 19 percent who believed that of McCain."
The same poll showed "Every foreign policy and national security issue tested tilts toward McCain: terrorism, Afghanistan, Iraq, the Middle East, Iran, and immigration."
That might also explain why Obama got no real bounce from his trip and that the race remains fundamentally unchanged with Obama holding on to a paper thin lead.
The big question now is will Obama be able to reign in enough of his monstrously oversized ego to fool enough people into thinking he's a humble down to earth guy just like them?
My bet is NO!
Trying to explain away the reason the House of Representatives has been so ineffective in getting anything done Speaker Nancy Pelosi got defensive:
With fewer than 20 legislative days before the new fiscal year begins Oct. 1, the entire appropriations process has largely ground to a halt because of the ham-handed fighting that followed Republican attempts to lift the moratorium on offshore oil and gas exploration. And after promising fairness and open debate, Pelosi has resorted to hard-nosed parliamentary devices that effectively bar any chance for Republicans to offer policy alternatives.Pelosi insists that she is in charge and things are going to be done her way. Will she also accept that she is responsible for not getting anything done?
“I’m trying to save the planet; I’m trying to save the planet,” she says impatiently when questioned. “I will not have this debate trivialized by their excuse for their failed policy.”
“I respect the office that I hold,” she says. “And when you win the election, you win the majority, and what is the power of the speaker? To set the agenda, the power of recognition, and I am not giving the gavel away to anyone.”
[editor's note: above is an audio interpretation of Pelosi's remarks.]
We all know the answer to that. Democrats daily demand a high standard of accountability for Republicans but never for themselves. It will be up to the voters to decide whether paying $4 a gallon for gas is the kind of "change" they voted for in 2006.
Monday, July 28, 2008
New York attorney and Founder of "Voter March", Louis Posner, used the now defunct Bush hating group to launder money from an illegal sex club he operated in New York City by the name of Hot Lap Dance Club.
The club was busted after an investigation which revealed drug dealing and prostitution were common at the establishment.
The female "employees" also complained that the Bush hating, money laundering Posner was a total leech who demanded sex of the women.
"He treated the girls as if they were property," one employee, a New Jersey resident in a tube top and skirt, told the NY Daily News. Another employee told the NY Post "Lou is a scumbag. I hope he burns in hell."
Employees of the Hot Lap Dance Club appear in court.
No word on whether former New York Governor Elliot Spitzer(DEMOCRAT), who resigned in March after it was learned he had his own setup with prostitutes, was among the clients.
Sunday, July 27, 2008
The Debate McCain Must Force
By Dick Morris
Real Clear Politics
June 25, 2008
...In our new book, Fleeced, we try to bring the debate back down to earth, focusing on the specific plans that Obama has announced during his presidential primary campaign and discussing the consequences. This is the debate Barack Obama hopes he can avoid.
Consider his proposals:
• In effect, he would legislate a 60 percent tax bracket for upper-income Americans, killing all initiative and innovation. He'd raise the top bracket to 40 percent. He'd apply FICA taxes to all income, not just that under $100,000 as at present. So add 40 percent plus FICA's 12.5 percent plus Medicare's 2 percent plus state and local taxes averaging, after deduction, at 5-6 percent, and you have a 60 percent bracket.
• He would double the capital gains tax, saddling the 50 percent of Americans who own stock with dramatically higher taxes.
• He'd double the dividend tax, hitting elderly coupon-clippers now retired and depending on fixed incomes.
• He wants to cover 12 million illegal immigrants with federally subsidized health insurance, dramatically driving up costs and forcing federal rationing of healthcare. As in the U.K. and Canada, you will not be permitted certain medical procedures if the bureaucrats decide you are not worth it.
• He proposes requiring Homeland Security operatives to notify terror suspects that they are under investigation within seven days of starting the investigation.
• He says that unless they can establish that there is "probable cause to believe that a certain individual is linked to a specific terrorist group," Homeland Security cannot seize his documents and search his business. The current standard is only that the search be "relevant" to a terror investigation.
And let's not forget that Obama is just fine with higher gas prices and opposes all new coal, petroleum and nuclear energy.
Not All Foreigners Love Obama
I'm sure that readers are bored with the last week's Obama world tour. But if you'll indulge me for a few seconds, it's important to know that not all foreigners love Obama. The following Canadian writing in the Toronto, Ontario Globe and Mail had this view:
Obama's audacity of hubris
By REX MURPHY
The Globe and Mail
July 26, 2008
...The missing element may be the candidate's equally sterling appreciation of himself. The rally in Berlin was the cue for this line of thought. As far as I know, this was his first visit to Germany. I could see him, on a first visit, as a candidate for the presidency, making calls on the Chancellor, meeting with opposition politicians, doing - as the Windsors call it - a bit of a walkabout.
But what was the idea behind a nominee for the highest office of the United States conducting a campaign rally in Berlin? Throw away those disclaimers from the Obama camp that the rally wasn't political. Mr. Obama doesn't knot his tie without politics providing the mirror.
It's strange to have to note this, but, he isn't yet president. He has absolutely no record at all of involvement in foreign policy.
Correction: He did offer unqualified, insistent opposition to the Petraeus surge in Iraq, which turned the war around to the point that some of its most relentless critics now maintain "it cannot be lost." In other words, on the one definitive issue, post-invasion, on his country's most important foreign involvement, the one decision the inarticulate and sublimely unhip Texan in the White House made alone, and got right, Mr. Obama was perfectly, publicly wrong.
There's very little wood - if you'll allow the metaphor - in that record, on which to build a podium to address Europe at a mass rally on your first visit to one of its ancient capitals. But Mr. Obama has self-confidence, he has sublime self-assurance. It's hardly more than two years ago that he was but a Chicago politician whose entire national resumé was a speech to John Kerry's nominating convention.
And it's less than two months ago that, ever so narrowly, he managed to edge Hillary Clinton out of contention for the nomination yet to be confirmed. It was razor close.
Yet, there he was on Thursday, acting in every way as if he were already president delivering, Urbi et Orbi, a proclamation. There was something almost glorious about the presumption: Call it the audacity of hubris. There was also and equally something very reckless about it. The only set who seem more enraptured than a good part of the U.S. media about the Obama campaign is the Obama campaign and the candidate himself.
The self-assurance, the commanding confidence of his campaign may turn out to be a transcending dynamic that rockets him into the White House while Mr. McCain is still trying to find a reporter to talk with. On the other hand, he may be signalling millions of voters that this untested candidate is just a damn sight too cocky for his own, and their, good.
I couldn't have said it better!
Saturday, July 26, 2008
Friday, July 25, 2008
Same "News" Media that Pounced on McCain Love Affair Rumors Won't Touch John Edwards Caught in Hotel With Mistress/Love Child Story
When the National Enquirer broke the story that former presidential candidate John Edwards was caught in a Beverly Hills hotel with what was described as his mistress and their love child the mainstream "news" media looked the other way.
Even when Fox News confirmed that a security guard summoned by John Edwards to rescue him from reporters as he as besieged in a hotel bathroom confirms that Edwards was at the scene and reportedly turned "totally white" when he learned the story reporters were following; the media still remained silent.
No report from:
- The New York Times
- Time Magazine
- Washington Post
- Associated Press
- The New Republic
And yet, when the NY Times broke the story of rumors of an affair John McCain was rumored to have had with a lobbyist, the media pile on was instant:
The Associated Press went so far as to run an article featuring the words of Cindy McCain and comparing her reaction to that of other political spouses with cheating husbands.
No one is suggesting that the media push a microphone in the face of Elizabeth Edwards, who is terminally ill. But that doesn't mean that the same standard of reporting shouldn't apply to John Edwards that was applied to McCain. After all, Edwards had vehemently denied rumors of the affair on previous occasions: "The story is false. It's completely untrue, ridiculous" Edwards said.
Writing at Slate.com Jack Schafer points out that 24 hours after the news broke of Senator Larry Craig's (R-Idaho) arrest for footsie in an airport restroom the media pounced on him for hypocrisy and at least 36 daily newspapers in the U.S. had published the story. Citing Craig's hypocrisy was their justification. Edwards hypocrisy and lies doesn't seem to faze the media at all.
Liberal Editor at LA Times Covers It Up for Edwards
Not only did the story not appear in the main print editions of newspapers or magazines, Mickey Kaus writing at Slate.com finds the email that the editor of the Los Angeles Times sent to the newspaper's online bloggers directing them to hush it up:
From: "Pierce, Tony"Frankly, the revelations about Edwards are less interesting than the media's reaction to the news. I'd have no problem if they treated all such stories with the delicacy and tact that they are currently treating the Edwards' story. But that's just not the case now is it? If the subject here was Mitt Romney or any other Republican the story would be entirely different.
Date: July 24, 2008 10:54:41 AM PDT
Subject: john edwards
There has been a little buzz surrounding John Edwards and his alleged affair. Because the only source has been the National Enquirer we have decided not to cover the rumors or salacious speculations. So I am asking you all not to blog about this topic until further notified.
If you have any questions or are ever in need of story ideas that would best fit your blog, please don't hesitate to ask
The U.S. Geological Survey just released a summary of a new report showing an estimated 90 billion barrels of oil to be found above the Arctic Circle. That is enough oil to fuel the entire American economy for 12 years. Along with the oil, an estimated 1,669 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, and 44 billion barrels of natural gas liquids are available for the taking.
But taking it is the problem. The technology is there to safely extract these resources with little to no risk to the environment or wildlife. What stands in the way is the U.S. Congress. Meanwhile, the Canadians, the Russians, the Norweigans and anyone else with a valid territorial claim is rushing to the Arctic to drill, drill, drill. But the largest pot of gold in Alaska sits there untapped while the price of gas in the United States go up, up and up.
For months now, Republicans in both the House and Senate have been trying to get a vote on a variety of energy legislation that would increase supply, encourage conservation and assist in the development of alternative energy supplies. Their requests have been refused.
Instead, Harry Reid in the Senate and Nancy Pelosi in the House have shut off debate on any plan that would include more drilling of American energy resources.
Senator Reid offers a bill that would reign in oil speculators. That's it. Not one drop of new oil brought to market. Speaker Pelosi demands that President Bush release 70 million barrels of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve and refill it at a later time. Her cry is "Free our oil" yet she won't let American companies drill for American oil to free the American consumer from the daily negative impact of high gas prices.
Earlier this month, we highlighted efforts that the GOP Senate has undertaken to force the issue and bring a vote on their plan the Gas Price Reduction Act of 2008. It would lift much of the ban on offshore drilling, remove the ban on oil shale development, tighten regulation of oil speculation and foster development of electric cars and trucks.
Led by House Republican Leader John Boehner, House GOP members gathered to show support for the "all of the above" plan to help lower gas prices for the American consumer.
The House GOP unveiled it's comprehensive "all of the above" plan called The American Energy Act on July 23, 2008. House Republicans gathered on the steps of the U.S. Capitol in a show of support for a plan that goes one better than the Senate GOP bill and permits drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and offshore in the Gulf of Mexico near Florida.
Compare the Democrat's "no drill" plan with the "all of the above" GOP plan:
House Republicans Energy Fact Finding Trip
While Barack Obama was beginning his whirlwind global campaign rally, nine house GOP members led by House Republican Leader John Boehner (R-OH) embarked on the American Energy Tour. Beginning in Golden, Colorado they first visited the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) to highlight developments in cutting-edge solar, wind, fuel cell, biomass, and other emerging energy technologies.
From Colorado they ventured north to Alasaka where they toured the Prudhoe Bay oil production facilities and the area of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge Congress set aside for oil exploration when it ititially set up the wildlife refuge. For readers who are interested, a photoset of the entire trip is here.
Jim Angle of Fox News went along for a portion of the trip and filed this report from ANWR:
Is one environmentalist standing on a mountaintop peering dozens of miles into the distance and seeing a tiny building on the shore pumping oil enough to force the American people to pay $4 or more for a gallon of gasoline?
Leader Boehner Demands a Vote!
House Republican Leader John Boehner has been very out front in demanding that Democrats permit a vote on energy alternatives that are not solely dictated to the Congress by the environmental lobby. If you have missed his noble efforts, here's a rundown.
And the effort seems to be paying off. This editorial in the Washington Post says it all:
No Drilling, No VoteDemocrats know that if the Republican energy plans in both the House and Senate came to an up or down vote they would pass. But do the voter's know that Democrats are still blocking ANY plan that would increase supply?
Speaker Pelosi won't let the House debate the merits of offshore drilling.
Friday, July 25, 2008; Page A20
WHY NOT have a vote on offshore drilling? There's a serious debate to be had over whether Congress should lift the ban on drilling in the Outer Continental Shelf that has been in place since 1981. Unfortunately, you won't be hearing it in the House of Representatives -- certainly, you won't find lawmakers voting on it -- anytime soon.
Instead of dealing with the issue on the merits, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), a staunch opponent of offshore drilling, has simply decreed that she will not allow a drilling vote to take place on the House floor. Why not? "What the president would like to do is to have validation for his failed policy," she said yesterday when asked that very question. "What we're saying is, 'Exhaust other remedies, Mr. President.' . . . It is the economic life of America's families, and to suggest that drilling offshore is going to make a difference to them paycheck to paycheck now is a frivolous contention. The president has even admitted that. So what we're saying is, 'What can we do that is constructive?' "
If there is an explanation buried in there about why that makes offshore drilling off-limits for a vote, we missed it. Ms. Pelosi is correct that drilling is no panacea for the nation's energy woes. The short-term effect of lifting the moratorium, if there were any, would be minimal. That doesn't mean the country shouldn't consider expanded drilling as one of many alternatives. There are legitimate concerns about the environmental impact of such drilling -- environmental concerns that, we would note, exist in other regions whose oil Americans are perfectly happy to consume. But have technological improvements made such drilling less risky? Why not have that debate?
When they took the majority, House Democrats proclaimed that "bills should generally come to the floor under a procedure that allows open, full and fair debate consisting of a full amendment process that grants the Minority the right to offer its alternatives." Why not on drilling?
Meanwhile, the dispute has snarled progress on spending bills for fear of having drilling amendments attached. Citing "the uncertainty in how the oil and gas drilling issue is currently playing out on the Senate floor," Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Robert C. Byrd (D-W.Va.) called off committee consideration of spending bills on which Republicans were threatening to offer drilling amendments. The result threatens to be the first time since at least 1950 that lawmakers will go home for the August recess without either chamber having passed a single appropriations bill.
If drilling opponents really have the better of this argument, why are they so worried about letting it come to a vote?
More Energy News:
Thursday, July 24, 2008
Obama in Berlin:
"Ich bin ein beginner"
For all Obama's rhetoric about Americans visiting Europe and not being able to say anything more than "merci beaucoup" is it arrogant of Obama to go to Germany and deliver a speech entirely in English?
Apparently, the only foreign language Obama knows is Bahasa, the language spoken in Indonesia and Malaysia. No doubt something he learned while at the Muslim Madrassa he attended while living in Indonesia.
The speech itself (transcript here) was mostly pap. Hardly up to the soaring standards of speechifying that Obama is famous for when there is a teleprompter present.
He spoke as if he was running for President of the world: "People of Berlin – people of the world – this is our moment. This is our time."
The crowd, which was estimated at uo to 200,000 loved it all. But then, Germans have been known to go a bit overboard for messianic speakers in the past.
Glenn Beck summed it up perfectly: "Sometimes it's hard to tell if Barack Obama is running for president of the United States or Mr. Universe."
Even before Obama's trip, some in the media began to see through the style over substance campaign that has typified Obama's efforts.
As usual, Charles Krauthammer sees through the fog and smoke:
The Audacity of VanityThe Messiah Trumps Judaism's Holiest Place?
By Charles Krauthammer
Real Clear Politics
July 18, 2008
In his victory speech upon winning the nomination, Obama declared it a great turning point in history -- "generations from now we will be able to look back and tell our children that this was the moment" -- when, among other wonders, "the rise of the oceans began to slow." As economist Irwin Stelzer noted in his London Daily Telegraph column, "Moses made the waters recede, but he had help." Obama apparently works alone.
Redeemer of our uninvolved, uninformed lives. Lord of the seas. And more. As he said on victory night, his rise marks the moment when "our planet began to heal." As I recall -- I'm no expert on this -- Jesus practiced his healing just on the sick. Obama operates on a larger canvas.
Early Thursday morning before leaving Jerusalem for Berlin Obama visited the Western Wall, the holiest site in Judaism. A handful of his supporters showed up with banners and signs in Hebrew to welcome the new messiah. When Jerusalem Police spokesman Mickey Rosenfeld was asked if this was typical behavior for candidates visiting the Wall he replied simply "No."
One man at the Wall who apparently didn't buy the "change and hope" snakeoil repeatedly shouted: "Obama, Jerusalem is our land! Obama, Jerusalem is not for sale!"
Dems Nervous as Obama's Poll Numbers Flatten?
It seems some in the "news" media cheerleading section for Obama are getting a bit nervous.
Obama Trip OverloadOh yes... voters aren't buying the snakeoil so that makes them racist! How predictable. Klein goes on to beg commenters at his blog to "calm down" suggesting that surely Obama's poll numbers will rise just as the anointed one has promised the waters of the ocean will recede!
July 23, 2008
Lots of speculation on the web, and in whispering circles, about why Obama's foreign trip--a slam-dunk success substantively and in photo-op terms (Obama laughing with Petraeus in the helicopter was the best)--hasn't resulted in a polling bump. The emerging conventional wisdom seems to be that the trip is a bit too grand, too...presumptuous and voters are wary of that. (And presumption, of course, always comes with the subterranean tinge of racism.) Maybe so.
Demonstrating the objectivity for which the "mainstream" "news" media is famous for, Michael Scherer, another reporter at Time had this to add:
As we all huddle around our televisions to watch the German masses cheer, as we prepare to read yet another magazine cover story featuring Obama's awesome good-lookingness, as we remind ourselves once again that this is a once-in-a-generation change election....Remember now, these are "real journalists." Not like those guys at "Faux" News.
Death Row Killer's Last Words are Plea for Obama Vote
Moments before he was put to death for participating in the savage killing of Marcus Gentry, Dale Leo Bishop urged Americans to vote for Barack Obama. "For those who oppose the death penalty and want to see it end, our best bet is to vote for Barack Obama because his supporters have been working behind the scenes to end this practice," Bishop said.
Bishop had requested the death penalty when found guilty of the murder of Gentry, but later changed his mind... Bishop was executed by lethal injection Wednesday evening. One less vote for Obama!
The Missing Obama Thesis
Obama and the case of the missing 'thesis'
By Jim Popkin,
July 24, 2008
Conservative provocateurs have been hunting for it. Investigative journalists have been on the prowl, too. Even a former professor has been searching through old boxes for his copy of it. But today Barack Obama made it official: He doesn’t have and can’t release any copies of the thesis-length paper he wrote 25 years ago while a senior at Columbia University.
Journalists began hounding Columbia University for copies of the musty document. Conservative bloggers began wondering if the young Obama had written a no-nukes screed that he might come to regret.
“A thesis entitled Soviet Nuclear Disarmament, written at the height of The Cold War in 1983, might shed some light upon what Barack Obama thought about our most pressing foreign policy issue for 40-plus years (U.S.-Soviet Relations),” he wrote in an e-mail to NBC News.
So what does the missing paper say, and could it be politically damaging to Obama?
Here are the top words on Mike's America. The larger a word is, the more often it is used:
Neat hunh? Try it yourself and show us the results from your own blog or favorite blog post. You can change the colors, font and layout. Then do a screen capture (print screen) and paste the image to the MS Paint program to save the image.
Wednesday, July 23, 2008
In Wednesday's Washington Post it was a threefer slam on Obama's plan for withdrawal from Iraq. First, Dan Balz informs readers that Obama's plan for withdrawal was opposed by General Petraeus in their meetings. After years of Democrats insisting we must "listen to the generals" it seems Obama may not have been so eager to hear what Petraeus had to say.
But it gets better than that. For readers who make it all the way to the editorial page (unfortunately, this leaves out most of Obama's voters) it's a double slam. Starting with the editorial which repeats the Petraeus concerns and goes further:
Mr. Obama in IraqObama stated in Iraq that the 16 month withdrawal timeline, which is sacrosanct to his core followers, might indeed be adjusted.... once the election is over and Obama wins.
Did he really find support for his withdrawal plan?
Wednesday, July 23, 2008; Page A14
THE INITIAL MEDIA coverage of Barack Obama's visit to Iraq suggested that the Democratic candidate found agreement with his plan to withdraw all U.S. combat forces on a 16-month timetable. So it seems worthwhile to point out that, by Mr. Obama's own account, neither U.S. commanders nor Iraq's principal political leaders actually support his strategy.
Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, who has a history of tailoring his public statements for political purposes, made headlines by saying he would support a withdrawal of American forces by 2010. But an Iraqi government statement made clear that Mr. Maliki's timetable would extend at least seven months beyond Mr. Obama's. More significant, it would be "a timetable which Iraqis set" -- not the Washington-imposed schedule that Mr. Obama has in mind. It would also be conditioned on the readiness of Iraqi forces, the same linkage that Gen. Petraeus seeks. As Mr. Obama put it, Mr. Maliki "wants some flexibility in terms of how that's carried out."
Other Iraqi leaders were more directly critical. As Mr. Obama acknowledged, Sunni leaders in Anbar province told him that American troops are essential to maintaining the peace among Iraq's rival sects and said they were worried about a rapid drawdown.
The Post editorial continues
[Obama] denied being "so rigid and stubborn that I ignore anything that happens during the course of the 16 months," though this would be more reassuring if Mr. Obama were not rigidly and stubbornly maintaining his opposition to the successful "surge" of the past 16 months. He also pointed out that he had "deliberately avoided providing a particular number" for the residual force of Americans he says would be left behind.And to complete the Post's triple Obama whack, Max Boot, from the Council on Foreign Relations and a foreign policy adviser to Sen. John McCain's campaign adds this:
Yet Mr. Obama's account of his strategic vision remains eccentric. He insists that Afghanistan is "the central front" for the United States, along with the border areas of Pakistan. But there are no known al-Qaeda bases in Afghanistan, and any additional U.S. forces sent there would not be able to operate in the Pakistani territories where Osama bin Laden is headquartered. While the United States has an interest in preventing the resurgence of the Afghan Taliban, the country's strategic importance pales beside that of Iraq, which lies at the geopolitical center of the Middle East and contains some of the world's largest oil reserves. If Mr. Obama's antiwar stance has blinded him to those realities, that could prove far more debilitating to him as president than any particular timetable.
Behind Maliki's GamesYes, isn't it funny that after years of referring to Maliki as Bush's "puppet" the left all of a sudden embraces him when they falsely think he has endorsed Obama's plan for
By Max Boot
Wednesday, July 23, 2008; Page A15
There is some irony in the fact that Democrats, after years of deriding Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki as a hopeless bungler and conniving Shiite sectarian, are now treating as sacrosanct his suggestion that Iraq will be ready to assume responsibility for its own security by 2010. Naturally this is because his position seems to support that of Barack Obama.
A little skepticism is in order here. The prime minister has political motives for what he's saying -- whatever that is.
Keep in mind also that Maliki has no military experience and that he has been trapped in the Green Zone, relatively isolated from day-to-day life. For these reasons, he has been a consistent font of misguided predictions about how quickly U.S. forces could leave.
In May 2006, shortly after becoming prime minister, he claimed, "Our forces are capable of taking over the security in all Iraqi provinces within a year and a half."
In October 2006, when violence was spinning out of control, Maliki declared that it would be "only a matter of months" before his security forces could "take over the security portfolio entirely and keep some multinational forces only in a supporting role."
President Bush wisely ignored Maliki. Instead of withdrawing U.S. troops, he sent more. The prime minister wasn't happy. On Dec. 15, 2006, the Wall Street Journal reported, "Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki has flatly told Gen. George Casey, the top American military commander in Iraq, that he doesn't want more U.S. personnel deployed to the country, according to U.S. military officials." When the surge went ahead anyway, Maliki gave it an endorsement described in news accounts as "lukewarm."
In January 2007, with the surge just starting, Maliki predicted "that within three to six months our need for the American troops will dramatically go down." In April 2007, when most of Baghdad was still out of control, the prime minister said that Iraqi forces would assume control of security in every province by the end of the year.
But Maliki's public utterances do not provide a reliable guide as to when it will be safe to pull out U.S. troops. Better to listen to the military professionals. The Post recently quoted Brig. Gen. Bilal al-Dayni, commander of Iraqi troops in Basra, as saying of the Americans, "We hope they will stay until 2020." That is similar to the expectation of Iraq's defense minister, Abdul Qadir, who says his forces cannot assume full responsibility for internal security until 2012 and for external security until 2018.
What would happen if we were to pull out much faster, on a 16-month timetable? Maj. Gen. Jeffrey Hammond, commander of coalition forces in Baghdad, says that would be "very dangerous" -- the same words used by Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
Of course, if the Iraqi government tells us to leave, we will have to leave. But, the prime minister's ambiguous comments notwithstanding, the Iraqi government is saying no such thing, because most Iraqis realize that the gains of the surge are fragile and could be undone by a too-rapid departure of U.S. forces.
It reminds me of what happened when military units were training for Bill Clinton's first inauguration. While U.S. Air Force jets did a rehearsal flyover, one new Clinton aide complained that the military was trying to horn in on their celebration. Another aide corrected her saying "those are OUR jets now."
Well, Obama hasn't been elected and Maliki isn't their puppet! Ever heard of the saying: Don't count your chickens before they are hatched?
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
Considering how much noise Democrats have made about reviving the Fairness Doctrine to reign in conservative talk radio you would think that what used to be called the "mainstream" "news" media would be extra careful to fairly present the views of both candidates as we approach the fall election for President of the United States.
On Monday, we learned that the NY Times had refused to print an op-ed submitted by John McCain after publishing an op-ed from Barack Obama on July 14th. The rejection of McCain's submission was yet another in a growing list of examples of traditional "news" media showing bias and taking sides.
When we learned that the three anchors of evening newscasts on ABC, CBS and NBC were going to accompany Obama on his overseas trip, something they have yet to do with President Bush, we began to discover just how deep the media's love affair with Obama really was.
The Project for Journalism Excellence, as well as the Tyndall Report have documented the sheer volume of news stories that feature Obama.
The imbalance has appeared in various analyses of the news coverage. The Tyndall Report, a news coverage monitoring service that has the broadcast networks as clients, reports that three newscasts by the traditional networks — which have a combined audience of more than 20 million people — spent 114 minutes covering Obama since June; they spent 48 minutes covering McCain.
Newsweek Covers featuring Barack the TranscendantVoter's Catching On to "News" Media Favoritism
The Pew Poll for June 5, 2008 broke the not so surprising news that the public thought the "news" media favored Obama heavily throughout the primary campaign when his candidacy was something new. But as the Project for Excellence in Journalism demonstrates in the chart below, the media's fascination with Obama hasn't waned now that he is the presumptive Democrat nominee.
Belief Growing That Reporters are Trying to Help Obama Win
Monday, July 21, 2008
The idea that reporters are trying to help Obama win in November has grown by five percentage points over the past month. The latest Rasmussen Reports telephone survey, taken just before the new controversy involving the New York Times erupted, found that 49% of voters believe most reporters will try to help the Democrat with their coverage, up from 44% a month ago.
In a more general sense, 45% say that most reporters would hide information if it hurt the candidate they wanted to win. Just 30% disagree and 25% are not sure. Democrats are evenly divided as to whether a reporter would release such information while Republicans and unaffiliated voters have less confidence in the reporters.
A separate survey released this morning also found that 50% of voters believe most reporters want to make the economy seem worse than it is. A plurality believes that the media has also tried to make the war in Iraq appear worse that it really is.
So not only are voters clued into the favorable bias for Obama, they have also figured out that the media have been reporting that both the economy and the Iraq war are worse than they actually are (which tends to help Obama).
Unfortunately, as the Pew June 5 survey shows, even though readers and viewers of traditional media are declining, they still dominate the vast majority of news coverage that reaches most Americans.
However, with declining viewership and readership of the old media comes an opportunity for voters to get a better sampling of information from new media on the internet. And that's why we're here. It may not be equal time, but is sure is better than no time at all!
If you haven't seen Wordsmith's report on Obama still insisting that even though the surge worked he would still have opposed it if we had to do it all over again.
This calls to question the "judgement" that Obama claims makes him fit to lead.
McCain is hitting back hard (finally):
McCain: "I had the courage and political judgement to say that I would rather lose a political campaign than lose a war. It seems to me Senator Obama would rather lose a war in order to win a political campaign."
Monday, July 21, 2008
Anthony Bologna, left, and his two sons, Michael, 20, and Matthew, 16, were shot and killed on Sunday, June 22, 2008 in San Francisco, Calif. Edwin Ramos, 21, of El Sobrante was arrested in the slayings.
Here are the details:
San Francisco: Sanctuary City Gone AwryWhat's worse is that the killer Ramos is an illegal alien and member of the notorious gang MS-13 and has a long record of violent assualts as a juvenile. San Francisco's Sanctuary City policy shielded this monster from deportation.
San Francisco Chronicle
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
...The Bolognas were on their way back from a family picnic when they inadvertently blocked Ramos' car from making a left turn in the Excelsior district. When Bologna politely backed up to let the other car past, Ramos responded by opening fire and killing all three passengers. Ramos has been charged with three counts of murder, with the added penalty of street-gang involvement.
The grief of Danielle Bologna, mother and widow is wrenching, but needs to be heard by all who would continue to harbor illegal aliens no matter what the cost to our society:
"I want JUSTICE!"
Sunday, July 20, 2008
You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you can not fool all of the people all of the time.
By now, readers will be very familiar with the Democrats "big lie" strategy. It's one they have used time and again. Whether it's global warming, or the surge in Iraq has failed or lately, that even if we drill for more oil today it won't be available for at least ten years. The big lie works. Lie loud enough and often enough and get your friends in the "news" media to repeat it and many people will accept it as fact.
But as Lincoln said, you can't fool all the people all the time. Some you can, and we will continue to call them Democrats. So, this news about how quickly we could begin lowering the price of oil by increasing the supply will come as a shock to them. Be kind, before you pass this along to any lib friends, make sure to hand them a hanky to cry in.
Earlier this month President Bush removed the Executive ban on offshore oil drilling and urged the Congress to follow suit. Congress will have to act one way or the other as the congressional moratorium on offshore drilling expires on September 30. Harry Pelosi and Nancy Reid (or is it the other way around?) have dug in their heels and refused to allow new drilling to take place offshore, or anywhere else for that matter.
Chief among their objections was that it would take "ten years" to get that oil to market. Like so much else in their repertoire, that statement too is untrue:
Does It Have To Take A Decade To Bring New Crude To Market?Ah yes, those wonderful environmental groups which raise nearly $7 billion dollars a year by scaring the American people are the ones holding American energy independence hostage with an army of lawyers and bucketfuls of cash to bribe Democrats!
BY MONICA SHOWALTER
INVESTOR'S BUSINESS DAILY
...Polls show most Americans favoring opening federal lands and offshore areas to energy production. As it stands, 97% of our offshore areas and 94% of our federal lands are off limits.
President Bush raised the likelihood that that could change with his lifting of the federal moratorium on offshore drilling.
But he's been opposed by Congress, which argues it will simply take too long — as much as 10 years or more — for the new oil to come to market to do any good.
That doesn't appear to be true.
To begin with, industry analysts note, much of the drilling delay is self-inflicted — a result of excessively stringent environmental and land-use regulations.
Scrap those, or modify them, and new oil can be produced in far less than 10 years.
Producing oil from new sources has three stages, which can take years, notes Marilyn Crockett, executive director of the Alaska Oil and Gas Association in Anchorage. First, comes an environmental impact report, then bidding on leases and, finally, drilling.
Yet, in some areas, the regulatory processes is largely done, so oil can come to market far sooner than 10 years — if Congress lets it.
Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin told IBD oil from the Chukchi Sea, believed to hold 15 billion barrels of oil, could flow much sooner than 10 years with new legislation.
"Those areas Congress can help us with right now," she said.
Congress' delays have become an issue in this year's campaigns.
"Those are problems that can be solved with legislation," said Craig Williams, a Republican congressional candidate from Pennsylvania, who traveled to the North Slope of Alaska last week and spoke to IBD by phone. He said streamlining the environmental impact process and tightening the four- to six-year schedule for bidding would make a big difference.
Bureaucracy's not the only problem.
"The chilling effect is the lawsuits at every single step of the way," said Crockett. "There is tremendous legal attention on oil and gas development participation in new areas. . . . I have been in this industry 38 years and know what happens."
According to the Institute for Energy Research, a private think tank, citing Bureau of Land Management data, protests, appeals and lawsuits over oil development averaged 1,180 per year between 2001 and 2007, a 706% increase over 1997-2000. The IER notes, for instance, that 100% of New Mexico's 78 oil leases were protested by environmental and neighborhood groups.
The group also noted that a critical pipeline from the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska has been held up by lawsuits — even as Congress blames oil companies for not producing oil from its leases there.
"They're stuck in position because they can't transport the oil 200 or 300 miles away," said Williams
In areas where the bureaucratic hurdles are over and lawsuits are absent, oil has been drilled and brought to the market in as little as one or two years. Louisiana's offshore areas are an example.
California's 10 billion barrels in offshore oil could be brought to market in as little as a year "if the moratorium were lifted," according to a recent Sanford C. Bernstein report said, citing that the oil is under shallow water and drilling platforms already exist.
To be sure, oil won't be flowing tomorrow even if all drilling restrictions were lifted.
That doesn't mean it won't impact prices.
Oil prices are influenced by futures markets — where people buy and sell future supplies of oil. Futures prices are now higher than spot prices, a signal that supply is tight.
If we have the will to drill, we can break the negative market psychology and send oil tumbling back below $100 a barrel.
Just a little talk from President Bush last week about pushing for more oil supplies helped push oil prices down more than 10% to below $130 a barrel in just five days, even though a drilling ban remains in place.
The widely respected Cambridge Energy Research Associates estimates speculative bidding accounts for about 20% of the price of oil. The promise of more supply would help cut prices.
Breaking the continuity of thinking about supply also affects existing oil producers.
A big one, like Saudi Arabia which has spare capacity, will have more incentive to pump if it thinks it will lose markets. That's what drilling in the U.S. would do — threaten Saudi Arabia's and OPEC's market dominance, and force them to pump more.
All that stands in the way is a Congress that, ironically, calls a 10-year production window too long, even as it's bankrolled by the very environmental special interests responsible the delays.
And why are they doing it? Oil exploration, transportation and use in this country has become remarkably safe. Especially when compared to the rest of the world.
Nature Pollutes MORE than Oil Companies and Users
In a largely unheralded report (you'll know why it was unheralded in a second) by the National Academy of Science titled "Oil in the Sea III" we learn:
Oil in the Sea IIIThe chart at right shows that natural oil seepage from the ocean floor accounts for far greater petroleum contamination than mandmade sources in the United States. And the proportion of U.S. pollution to that of other nations is far less. There is no valid environmental reason NOT to drill for more oil.
National Academy of Science
New estimates indicate that the overall amount of petroleum released to the marine environment may be lower than earlier thought. This reflects, in part, advances
over the last decade in marine transportation and oil and gas production techniques. Spillage from vessels in North American waters from 1990 to 1999 was less than one-third of the spillage during the prior decade, and, despite increased production, reductions in releases during oil and gas exploration and production have been dramatic as well.
A recent report on the oil tanker industry backs up the National Academy of Sciences conclusions by reporting that oil spills from tankers have reached historic lows.
And as we have seen, environmental groups are even willing to overlook their objections to oil drilling in even the most ecologically sensitive areas for the right price.
The Dirty Little Secret: Dems love high has prices
With all of the above in mind, why do Dems use every tactic to continue blocking new American sources of oil? The answer goes beyond mere money and the zealotry of the environmental movement. The answer is that controlling energy means controlling the economy and every facet of life in this country.
Readers will recall that Obama famously let it slip that high gas prices weren't such a bad thing. He just wished the price rise wouldn't have been so rapid.
Well, one writer in San Francisco (where else?) writing a column called "Shades of Green" (that should be a hint) wrote this:
SHADES OF GREENThe author goes on to promise that once oil hits $8 a gallon a host of welcome change will befall us all. It's a pure socialist and Utopian fantasy and a dangerous one at that.
Commentary: Eight reasons higher prices will do us a world of good
By Chris Pummer
May 28, 2008
For one of the nastiest substances on earth, crude oil has an amazing grip on the globe. We all know the stuff's poison, yet we're as dependent on it as our air and water supplies -- which, of course, is what oil is poisoning.
Americans should be celebrating rather than shuddering over the arrival of $4-a-gallon gasoline. We lived on cheap gas too long, failed to innovate and now face the consequences of competing for a finite resource amid fast-expanding global demand.
A further price rise as in Europe to $8 a gallon -- or $200 and more to fill a large SUV's tank -- would be a catalyst for economic, political and social change of profound national and global impact. We could face an economic squeeze, but it would be the pain before the gain.
We have the oil resources in the United States to make us wholly independent from foreign sources. We could exploit those resources and take much of the money that would have been going overseas and use it to develop and implement the eventual oil free future that one day will come. And we can do it without a massive social and economic disruption or harm to the environment.
A blog by the name of "The Other McCain" had a good idea. Adapt Newt Gingrich's slogan "Drill Here. Drill Now. Pay Less." to ""Drill Here, Drill Now, Annoy Barbra Streisand."
Saturday, July 19, 2008
So the anointed savior of the American left is busy on his world tour this weekend, having already visited Kuwait and Afghanistan. Along for the ride are some of the leading lights of the American "news" media.
Before the acolytes of the anointed one boarded the plane with Obama representatives of John McCain's campaign handed reporters a briefing book, complete with Obama's faux presidential seal and containing 17 pages of suggested questions reporters who were truly interested in serving the public good as opposed to a liberal political agenda might want to ask.
Marc Ambinder has a copy of the briefing book and you can download it here.
Here are a sampling of questions from the briefing book that I'd like to see answered:More Questions For Obama
You said on “Meet the Press,” on May 4, 2008, “I think we have to be focused on Afghanistan.” So why is it that, according to The Hill newspaper, you have “missed two of three Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearings on Afghanistan since joining the panel” ? And why have you only now decided to visit Afghanistan for the first time after having been in office for more than three and a half years? Yet you’ve already visited Iraq once. Why aren’t you focused on Afghanistan in your work as a senator?
You’ve also talked about how critical it is to get our European allies to increase their contributions in Afghanistan. “As we step up our commitment,” you said on August 1, 2007, “our European friends must do the same, and without the burdensome restrictions that have hampered NATO's efforts.” Yet as chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on European Affairs since January 2007 you haven’t held a single hearing on this or any other subject. Why not? Are you putting your political ambitions above doing the job that the people of Illinois elected you to do?
You predicted that the surge in Iraq would fail. In January 2007 you said, “I am not persuaded that 20,000 additional troops in Iraq is going to solve the sectarian violence there. In fact, I think it will do the reverse.” You still deny that the surge has been a success, even if violence is down. “Iraq’s leaders have not made the political progress that was the purpose of the surge,” you claim. Yet you are now proposing a smaller surge in Afghanistan of two brigades, or about 8,000 troops. Why do you think a smaller surge will work in Afghanistan when you were convinced that a bigger surge would fail in Iraq?
At a presidential debate on February 21, 2008, you complained that our troops in Afghanistan “didn’t have enough ammunition, they didn’t have enough Humvees.” So why did you vote against giving them the funding they need to fight? On May 24, 2007, you were one of only 14 senators who voted against a $94.4 billion spending bill that included crucial funding for our troops not only in Iraq but also in Afghanistan.
You’ve said we need to “use the power of American diplomacy” and that “It's time to turn the page on the diplomacy of tough talk and no action.” Yet in the very same speech, you also said: “If we have actionable intelligence about high-value terrorist targets and President Musharraf won't act, we will.” Pakistan’s foreign minister branded your statement as “very irresponsible.” Why do you think it’s a good idea to bluster in public about taking military action on the soil of an American ally? And how do you think that such statements will help you to achieve your goal of initiating “a new relationship” with Pakistan “so that we can get better cooperation to hunt down al-Qaeda”?
There are more questions in the briefing book for Obama in Iraq. And I invite readers to add their own in the comments section.
But here are a few more I would like to ask:
You've repeatedly said that you never would have gone to war with Iraq. How would you explain to the mother searching the mass graves in Hila for her family (see below) or the couple who braved violence to vote with their children why they would have been better off with Saddam still in power?
Saddam Hussein gave the families of Palestinian suicide bombers $25,000 after a successful attack on Israeli Jews. How would you explain to the families who lost loved ones in those attacks that Saddam was not a threat and should not have been removed from power?
On June 4th you told the American Israeli Public Affairs Committee that "Jerusalem will remain the capital of Israel, and it must remain undivided." The next day you said the status of Jerusalem was subject to negotiation. Which is it?
In large part, World War II started because Western leaders were more interested in peace, or the absence of war, than they were in justice for the nation's Hitler invaded and the Jews he slaughtered by the millions. Will you visit a German Concentration Camp while you are there and learn more about the evil of appeasement?
(Electrified fence at Dachau. Photo by Mike's America)
President Bush has visited the American war graves in France to pay honor to their sacrifice and demonstrate an understanding of the cost that appeasement, or diplomacy without military force, brings. Will you also honor America's war dead so you may better understand that you can never negotiate with our enemies without preconditions and the military might to back up your agreements?
Friday, July 18, 2008
George W. Bush Sewage Plant plan is on ballot12,000 signatures for this "waste" of the electoral process? Apparently there are more fools per square foot in San Francisco than anyplace else in the U.S. Not that anyone was surprised!
San Francisco Chronicle
July 18, 2008
San Francisco voters will be asked to decide whether to name a city sewage plant in honor of President Bush, after a satiric measure qualified for the November ballot Thursday.
Backers of the measure, who for several months circulated a petition to place the measure on the ballot, turned in more than 12,000 signatures on July 7, said organizer Brian McConnell. The Department of Elections on Thursday informed those supporters, the self-proclaimed Presidential Memorial Commission, that they had enough valid signatures - a minimum of 7,168 registered San Francisco voters - to qualify for the November ballot.
McConnell, who came up with the idea over beers with friends, often donned an Uncle Sam outfit (see above) to drum up support for the petition. The all-volunteer group of signature gatherers often carried around an American flag and blasted patriotic music from a boom box to attract attention. He said the campaign to pass the measure will be an equally grassroots effort.
The measure, if passed, would rename the Oceanside Water Pollution Control Plant the George W. Bush Sewage Plant. McConnell said the intent is to remember the Bush administration and what the group sees as the president's mistakes, including the war in Iraq.
Some people aren't laughing, including the San Francisco Republican Party, which sees the measure as an embarrassment, even to this famously liberal city. Chairman Howard Epstein has vowed to fight the measure with all means available to him.
Debasing patriotic symbols like the flag and Uncle Sam along with patriotic music shows what these Stalinists think of the freedom this country has offered them. Freedom to be colossal morons!
Thursday, July 17, 2008
When Mike's America named Skye at Midnight Blue Blogger of the Year it was because of her eagerness to get out there be part of the action and give her readers live reports from the scene at events in Washington, DC or her own Victory Coalition in West Chester, Pennsylvania.
So, it should suprise no one that Skye's desire for adventure and generosity in sharing with readers shouldn't take another bold new course.
Skye: Official blogger at the GOP Convention!
Skye will be filing on the scene reports from the 2008 GOP Convention in Minneapolis and giving those of us who stayed at home a taste of how much fun a convention can be.
Here's her announcement video:
Readers will be invited to interact with Skye online throughout the convention, September 1-4.
It's not cheap to have your own personal blogger on the ground in Minneapolis, so we're hoping the generosity of our readers will be equal to the generosity of spirit Skye puts into every one of her blog posts.
Here are a few suggestions on how you can help:
$5 buys Skye a drink at one of Minneapolis's better watering holes as she grills nervous delegates on their choice for McCain's V.P.
$20 buys Skye a reasonable lunch near the convention site while she hobnobs with the press and asks "why ARE you people so in the tank for that lightweight Obama?"
$50 buys Skye a fine meal at a swanky restaurant while she needles sheepish RNC officials on their general timidity.
$100 goes a long way towards buying Skye a comfortable, yet fashionable, pair of shoes so she can catch the shuttle bus back to her hotel room and tell us all the inside scoop before trotting off to another party.
Pallbearers, including Tony's son Robbie, carry former White House Press Secretary Tony Snow's remains out of the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception followed by his wife, Jill (in blue), and their two daughters after his funeral July 17, 2008 in Washington, DC. U.S. President George W. Bush and first lady Laura Bush attended the funeral for Snow, who died July 12 after a long battle with colon cancer. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
Remarks of President Bush at Snow Funeral
White House transcript
July 17, 2008
THE PRESIDENT: Archbishop Wuerl, Father O'Connell, Mr. Vice President, members of the Cabinet and my administration, members of Congress, distinguished guests; most importantly, the Snow family, Jill, Robbie, Kendall, Kristi and Jim, and other family members; former colleagues of Tony. Laura and I are privileged to join you today to pay our final respects to a cherished friend.
Tony Snow was a man of uncommon decency and compassion. He was a devoted husband, a proud and loving father, an adoring son, a beloved colleague, and a wonderful role model and friend.
In a life that was far too brief, he amassed a rare record of accomplishment. He applied his gifted mind to many fields: as a columnist, newspaper editor, TV anchor, radio host, and musician. He had the sometimes challenging distinction of working for two Presidents named Bush. As a speechwriter in my Dad's administration, Tony tried to translate the President's policies into English. (Laughter.) As a spokesman in my administration, Tony tried to translate my English into English. (Laughter.)
Tony always gave me good and candid advice. He was a man of profound substance who loved ideas, held strong beliefs, and reveled in defending them. He took very seriously his duty to inform the public about what its government was doing during historic times for our nation.
In the White House briefing room, Tony worked to build a relationship of candor and trust with the press corps. On his first day at the podium, he told the gathered reporters this: "One of the reasons I took this job is not only because I believe in the President, but because, believe it or not, I want to work with you." Tony was the first working journalist to serve as the White House Press Secretary for nearly 30 years. He knew the job of a reporter was rigorous. He admired the profession -- and always treated it with respect. And the presence of so many members of the Fourth Estate here today attests to the admiration and respect that he earned.
Of course, Tony's adjustment from commentator to spokesman was not seamless. Ann Compton of ABC recently recalled that when you asked Tony a question, he would sometimes get going, and she would have to stop him and say: "Tony, wait, I asked what the President thought." (Laughter.)
Tony brought a fierce and challenging intellect to his duties. And he displayed an engaging wit. When a reporter asked a rather labored question about Congress, Tony did not answer it. The persistent reporter pressed him: "Are you going to just evade that question?" With a smile, Tony quipped: "No, I'm going to laugh at it." (Laughter.)
I believe the reason Tony was so good at his job is that he looked at the world in a joyful way. He was a proud patriot who believed in America's goodness, and an optimist who knew America's possibilities. He believed strongly in the wisdom of the American people. And throughout his career, he took a special pride in being a vigorous and unapologetic defender of our men and women in uniform. He supported their missions, saw honor in their achievements, and found every possible opportunity to highlight their character and courage.
Tony Snow, the professional, is a hard act to follow. Tony Snow, the man, is simply irreplaceable. Everyone who worked with him quickly grew to love him. We will always remember his wry sense of humor and abundant goodness. We'll also remember he was just a lot of fun. After all, he played six different musical instruments and was a proud member of a band called Beats Working. He may be one of the few people in history to have jammed on the South Lawn of the White House and with Jethro Tull. (Laughter.)
We remember Tony's thoughtfulness. No matter how busy he was, this was a man who put others first. He would go out of his way to ask about people's families. He would check in with friends whenever he heard they were ill. He'd reach out to others, sometimes strangers, who were struggling with cancer. Even when he was going through difficult chemotherapy sessions, he sent inspirational e-mails to a friend whose son was suffering from a serious illness.
We remember Tony's resilient spirit. When he received a second diagnosis of cancer, he did not turn to despair. He saw it as another challenge to tackle. He found comfort in the prayers he received from millions of Americans. As he told the graduates here at Catholic University last year, "Never underestimate the power of other people's love and prayer. They have incredible power. It's as if I've been carried on the shoulders of an entire army. And they made me weightless."
Most of all, we remember Tony's love of his family. There was no doubt for Tony Snow that his family was first. When Jill reached a milestone birthday, Tony had a huge celebration. He later said that he and Jill danced that night as if they were teenagers. He said he was the most fortunate man in the world to have shared love like that. So, today, Jill, our hearts are with you, and we thank you for giving Tony such a special life.
For Robbie, Kendall, and Kristi, you are in our thoughts and prayers, as well. We thank you for sharing your dad with us. He talked about you all the time. He wanted nothing more than your happiness and success. You know, I used to call Tony on the weekends to get his advice. And invariably, I found him with you on the soccer field, or at a swim meet, or helping with your homework. He loved you a lot. Today I hope you know that we loved him a lot, too.
I know it's hard to make sense of today. It is impossible to fully comprehend why such a good and vital man was taken from us so soon. But these are the great mysteries of life -- and Tony knew as well as anyone that they're not ours to unveil.
The day Tony was born was also the day that many of his fellow Catholics pay tribute to Saint Justin. Justin was also a gifted thinker and writer, and a powerful witness for the Christian faith. Because of his beliefs, he suffered many times of trial, and in the year 165 A.D. he was arrested. Before he received a sentence of death, he was asked: "If you are killed, do you suppose you will go to heaven?" Justin replied: "I do not suppose it, but I know and am fully persuaded of it."
Tony Snow knew that, as well. That brought him great peace. When talking about the struggle he waged so admirably, he said that no matter how bad times may sometimes seem, "God doesn't promise tomorrow, he does promise eternity."
And so today we send this man of faith and character and joy on his final journey. Tony Snow has left the City of Washington for the City of God. May he find eternal rest in the arms of his Savior. And may the Author of all creation watch over his family and all those who loved him, admired him, and will always cherish his memory.
An urn carrying the ashes of former White House spokesman Tony Snow is ushered from the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, DC, July 17, 2008 after his funeral. AFP PHOTO/Jim WATSON
3 Anchors to Follow Obama's Trek AbroadIt's been a given that most "mainstream" "news" media types have been in the tank for Obama from the beginning. It's also no secret that the "news" media's former darling, John McCain, has been largely kicked to the curb by the same folks who built up his reputation in the first place.
By Howard Kurtz
July 17, 2008; C02
The three network anchors will travel to Europe and the Middle East next week for Barack Obama's trip, adding their high-wattage spotlight to what is already shaping up as a major media extravaganza.
Lured by an offer of interviews with the Democratic presidential candidate, Brian Williams, Charlie Gibson and Katie Couric will make the overseas trek, meaning that the NBC, ABC and CBS evening newscasts will originate from stops along the route and undoubtedly give it big play.
John McCain has taken three foreign trips in the past four months, all unaccompanied by a single network anchor.
Obama has "proven adept at generating excitement," says David Folkenflik, media correspondent for National Public Radio. He said the anchors hope "a little bit of that excitement will rub off on their newscasts if they can convey an American phenomenon abroad, if that's what it turns out to be. Senator McCain is not as magnetic a figure in that way."
But now, the medias bias is becoming so obvious that it would be laughable if they tried to deny it. Three major news anchors going on the road with a presidential candidate? It's unprecedented.
But what isn't new is the media fascination with Obama which often treats McCain as an afterthought. The following chart by the Project for Excellence in Journalism makes it clear:
Bias in reporting isn't always HOW you cover a story. In large part it's whether you choose to cover a story at all. With three "news" anchors leading the cheering section for Obama's upcoming trip, it's clear whose side they have chosen.