Wednesday Open Thread

I've got some things to attend to this morning, so here's an open thread where you can pick the topics, politics-related or not while I'm attending to them.

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    Barnbabe's comment (none / 0) (#1)
    by Jeralyn on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:03:52 AM EST
    I had to delete the thread and redo it. Barnbabe's comment got erased. It was:

    Your hits probably take in account that there are probably a lot of 1 or 2 minute hits especially for the people at work, me, who hit and miss and have to keep coming back. At home I have time to read all the comments and diaries.

    Congrats.You have a fair and balanced site. Thank you.

    Has anyone read TNR (none / 0) (#2)
    by znosaro on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:06:06 AM EST
    about the Obama campaign racializing the primaries?


    I feel sorry for anyone who reads (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by cannondaddy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:13:45 AM EST
    this trash and finds it well written.

    I feel sorry for anyone who hasn't (none / 0) (#9)
    by RalphB on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:25:46 AM EST
    been paying attention enough to know that Wilentz is absolutely correct.  

    I have been paying very close attention (none / 0) (#36)
    by cannondaddy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:46:11 AM EST
    if you had, you would know know that Rush Limbaugh predicted Clinton's Jesse Jackson comment a week before he said it.  

    Wilentz really degrades himself (none / 0) (#44)
    by Geekesque on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:52:51 AM EST
    when he writes this kind of offensive, fact-free stuff.

    In his white-privileged mind, Barack Obama was at fault for invoking Martin Luther King Jr.  Because only white people can do that without it being race-baiting.

    Wilentz joins the list of "formerly respectable people who tossed it away to shill for the CLintons."


    You calling someone else a shill (5.00 / 1) (#72)
    by RalphB on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:11:55 AM EST
    is really funny.  :-)

    It Takes One To Know One (none / 0) (#100)
    by squeaky on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:37:16 AM EST
    I don't posture as a "respected (none / 0) (#117)
    by Geekesque on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 02:00:40 PM EST
    historian' while shilling for a candidate.  I am what I am.

    Thanks for sharing (none / 0) (#4)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:12:19 AM EST
    After this campaign, I've gotta talk to my doctor about blood pressure meds.

    And they think we should just unite around Obama.  No. Absolutely not.


    Cure for high blood pressure (none / 0) (#29)
    by Chimster on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:41:43 AM EST
    An Obama and Hillary ticket. Its been feared by Republicans since before the primaries began. Roughly half of democratic voters want Hillary. The other half wants Barrack. One group dislikes the other. Put them together and you have the golden ticket. A win-win for Dems and an instant cure for your high blood pressure. Voila!

    please put urls in html format (none / 0) (#5)
    by Jeralyn on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:12:33 AM EST
    or they skew the site. Use the link button at the top of the comment box. I have to delete comments with overly long urls. Thanks.

    Thanks (none / 0) (#23)
    by znosaro on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:39:11 AM EST
    I'm new to this (like my third post), but I will do that in the future.

    Jeralyn (none / 0) (#63)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:07:09 AM EST
    When you check back in, there is a comment on the Rezko thread that includes a statement Obama took money from an Iraqi millionaire.  No attribution for this assertion.   A very rich Iraqi living in Great Britain wired lots of money to Rezko or his attorney recently, leading to Rezko's bail revocation.  Maybe that is what the commenter was thinking of.  Who knows.

    She deleted a comment (none / 0) (#82)
    by JJE on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:15:12 AM EST
    containing that same false assertion yesterday, so presumably she will do the same today.

    I'll go look and delete it (none / 0) (#86)
    by Jeralyn on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:18:32 AM EST
    I did delete one such comment yesterday and I stated it was a false accusation.  I'll go take another look, thanks.

    Can't find it (none / 0) (#98)
    by Jeralyn on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:34:38 AM EST
    what is the comment number of the one you are referring to?

    same story (none / 0) (#111)
    by Foxx on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 12:42:51 PM EST
    where I read that (sorry don't remember now the citation) said the same billionaire also wired Rezko 3.5 million just before he and Obama bought their adjoining properties. I believe it was a reputable source. Maybe the online Times article?

    Wilentz (none / 0) (#7)
    by Athena on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:14:40 AM EST
    Yes - a rare and necessary corrective - sharply dissecting the race cards and how they were played - noting that Obama has played the game himself with a very full deck.

    Oh please (none / 0) (#67)
    by JJE on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:10:23 AM EST
    Wilentz has no evidence for his conclusions.  It's just his pro-Clinton spin.  He ascribes bad motives to the Obama campaign without any direct evidence, but then takes journalists to task for doing the same thing vis a vis the Clintons. If Obama was going to race-bait the Clintons, there's much more fertile ground than anything that's been raised in this campaign.  The Wilentz piece is hackery of the highest order.

    Shame Sean Wilentz (none / 0) (#78)
    by RalphB on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:14:08 AM EST
    is a respected historian and not just another hack like those other journalists.  Ascribing of motives is a bit harsh, but his timeline is right on.

    So is Doris Kearns-Goodwin (none / 0) (#84)
    by JJE on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:16:58 AM EST
    Being a respected historian on TV doesn't insulate one from charges of Hackery.  Wilentz pretends the photo flap was race-baiting, when it was actually about Muslim-baiting.  Wilentz' analysis is shoddy.

    Goodwin is a plagiarist and has nowhere (none / 0) (#105)
    by MarkL on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 12:00:19 PM EST
    near the stature of Wilentz.
    Funny how the plagiarist sides with obama, eh?

    She sided with Obama? (none / 0) (#114)
    by JJE on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 01:22:44 PM EST
    Some of Wilentz's academic history, most notably his 1980 book about union organizing, is good scholarship.  But when he puts on his pundit hat and tries to pass off his unsupported opinion as historical fact, he dishonors his profession.

    When most of his blurb (none / 0) (#88)
    by flyerhawk on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:19:34 AM EST
    dealt with issues NOT related to race, it is hard to take his blurb seriously.

    Are you serious? (none / 0) (#83)
    by znosaro on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:16:21 AM EST
    new thread on Wilentz (none / 0) (#99)
    by Jeralyn on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:36:10 AM EST
    BTW (none / 0) (#3)
    by tek on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:06:54 AM EST
    i thought Obama might have hurt himself somewhat by saying that he voted against the Guest Worker thing because "what would happen is we will have lots of illegals in the country because they won't leave."  Puts these people in a very negative connotation.

    I did a double take when I heard him (none / 0) (#8)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:23:48 AM EST
    say that and was surprised someone, HRC or the questioner, didn't inquire further.

    why isn't the march a selling point for Obama (none / 0) (#20)
    by Socraticsilence on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:37:33 AM EST
    A serious question, can someone tell me why the fact that Obama was one of only 2 Senators to march during the immigration rallies, isn't a bigger selling point for him in the Hispanic community, I mean it was both politically risky and morally courageous?

    My question would be why hasn't (none / 0) (#24)
    by Florida Resident on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:39:44 AM EST
    his campaign used it.  Maybe they think it would hurt them with the independent and cross-over vote.

    That's what I thought (none / 0) (#33)
    by Socraticsilence on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:44:36 AM EST
    But the Driver's license thing is far more polarizing right?

    A picture is worth a 1000 words (none / 0) (#35)
    by Florida Resident on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:45:55 AM EST
    does anyone think (none / 0) (#10)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:26:08 AM EST
    Hillary might accept the VP spot?
    if it came to that.

    No. (none / 0) (#12)
    by sweetthings on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:29:22 AM EST
    I can't see either of them taking the VP slot. Both of them are too strong, and have too little to gain.

    unfortunately I agree (none / 0) (#15)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:30:53 AM EST
    but unfortunately I think it might be the only way either can win

    I don't think so. (none / 0) (#16)
    by sweetthings on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:34:22 AM EST
    I realize emotions are running very high right now on both sides of the fence, but we Democrats have two excellent candidates with excellent chances in November regardless of which one wins. And while only one is likely to be President, both will continue to serve Democratic causes for years to come.

    Things are not as bad as they seem.


    Agreed. (none / 0) (#19)
    by Chimster on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:37:22 AM EST
    If Obama's ego allows him to ask Hillary to be VP, it would be an unbeatable ticket. Unbeatable! But I'm sure  Mrs. Obama would have an issue with that. Hillary and Bill would overshadow her. It would be an odd dynamic, but would be fun to watch.

    "odd dynamic" Understatement (none / 0) (#22)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:39:03 AM EST
    of the year.  What wonderful photo ops for those Rose Garden, off to Camp David pics.

    The VP slot is lame (none / 0) (#25)
    by Socraticsilence on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:40:20 AM EST
    As an Obama fan, I think the VP slot would be a step down for HRC from a potential Moyihan, Mansfield type role in the Senate (dump Reid as majority leader, can someone tell why, after what happened to Daschle we'd even attempt to have a majority leader from a Red/Purple state it just seems dumb), if she wasn't 60 already I'd push to nominate her to the Supreme Court.  

    I agree that Hillary would make (none / 0) (#38)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:47:46 AM EST
    a great majority leader.  whoever the president is.

    Let's put this shoe on the other foot-- (none / 0) (#40)
    by Kathy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:50:10 AM EST
    What about Obama--do you guys think he'd make a great majority leader in the senate?

    why not (none / 0) (#43)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:52:42 AM EST
    my dog would be an improvment over what we got.

    I don't think (none / 0) (#48)
    by Lena on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:55:43 AM EST
    he's experienced enough.

    I seriously mean that. And considering he's not experienced enough to be Senate Majority Leader... oh, boy. If he gets the nomination, are we ever screwed.


    we can only hope (none / 0) (#53)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:58:33 AM EST
    he can pick a cabinet as well as he has picked a campaign staff.
    I dont think all his success can be contributed to the media lovein.
    some. not all.

    that's my point (none / 0) (#59)
    by Kathy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:02:18 AM EST
    People don't think he's qualified enough to be senate majority leader, yet he is qualified enough to be president.

    THey would not even consider putting him up for senate leader.

    I wonder--what do folks think Obama should do if he loses the nom and isn't put on the ticket as VP?  


    if he loses the nom (none / 0) (#65)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:07:42 AM EST
    or if he loses (gulp) the general.

    Maybe some of Adlai Stevenson's (none / 0) (#70)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:11:13 AM EST
    descendants would endorse him?

    In all fairness... (none / 0) (#69)
    by sweetthings on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:10:58 AM EST
    They are very different jobs, and being qualified for one does not make you qualified for the other.

    It's not a matter of experience (none / 0) (#77)
    by flyerhawk on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:14:03 AM EST
    The Senate is a stodgy place that treats tenure as an equivalent of prestige.  

    Truth be told Hillary wouldn't normally be considered for the spot either however given the current political landscape with a tight Presidential primary and the rumors of Harry Reid moving on, it is certainly a possibility.

    I don't think that Obama would EVER be a good Senate majority leader.


    Nor is HRC (none / 0) (#73)
    by JJE on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:12:14 AM EST
    If Obama's one term in the senate aren't enough experience, then neither are HRC's two terms.

    you do know how long a senate term is, right? (none / 0) (#91)
    by Kathy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:23:44 AM EST
    No. He'd be busy campaigning. (none / 0) (#49)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:56:32 AM EST
    No. He'd be busy campaigning (none / 0) (#55)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:59:32 AM EST
    I really thought that was the most amazing answer of the night.
    havent seen that anywhere today though. surprise surprise.

    No (none / 0) (#58)
    by flyerhawk on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:01:17 AM EST
    The truth is that he has too strong a personality and not enough street cred in the Senate to be Senate Majority leader.  

    If he doesn't become President expect him to run for Governor of Illinois.  


    Gov of IL (none / 0) (#61)
    by Kathy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:06:13 AM EST
    would be a good step.  Spend a few years there, get some more experience, then run in eight years.  My biggest arguments against Obama come up because of his obvious lack of political experience.  I think that he doesn't know how to play the games.  Being governor for a while, working within and around the system, would be nice on-the-job training for him.  Assuming he does better than Deval Patrick...which I think he can.

    The lesson Obama should take if he loses is that experience and not taking public stands on some important issues is what is nailing him all over the place.  If he goes into office determined to learn from these lessons, he would be a formidable president (not just a formidable candidate for president).


    Governor of Illinois. (none / 0) (#62)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:06:20 AM EST
    I am in that state now and I think he would win easily.

    No, No Leadership (none / 0) (#79)
    by Athena on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:14:31 AM EST
    No.  He's shown no ability to galvanize the Senate over any serious issue - it's a travesty that the press has not pursued this obvious failing.  Somehow he will be endowed with magical powers when he reaches the White House, despite no evidence of these before.

    Of course he hasn't (none / 0) (#85)
    by flyerhawk on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:17:43 AM EST
    neither Hillary or Obama are leaders in the Senate.  They are junior Senators that must abide by the pecking order and seniority rules of the Senate.  

    Just because they are rock star Senators does NOT mean they are leaders.  It means they have small bully pulpits they can occasionally speak from.


    WASN'T 60 ALREADY???!!!! (none / 0) (#112)
    by Foxx on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 12:45:31 PM EST
    I guess you are 20? Guess what, 60 is really young!!!

    Age is important for SC canidates (none / 0) (#113)
    by Socraticsilence on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 01:04:35 PM EST
    The supreme court is a lifetime appointment, I didn't mean tob e ageist but considering its importance and the rules that govern it, age must be a consideration.

    Probably Not (none / 0) (#27)
    by Saul on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:40:41 AM EST
    If this race stays close all the way to the end there will be IMO a big and I mean a very big division of voters and not just political  junkies, who will not vote in the general because their man or their woman did not get nominated.  Enough of them that could make a difference in winning the popular vote and therefore loosing this election.  I know there are sharp dislikes between Obama and Hilary but if you wanted a slam dunk ticket that would probably guaranteed the general election is for both of them to be on the same ticket. Then that would be less divisive than the elimination of one side. Plus it would probably  make roughly around 90 percent of both sides happy.

    Does that 90% include (none / 0) (#30)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:42:47 AM EST
    DK?  Hard to imagine the Obama supporters there cooling down enought to stop ranting against HRC if she was on the ticket, even as VP.  

    and vice versa (none / 0) (#95)
    by A DC Wonk on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:31:34 AM EST
    ... if you read the comment to blogs.

    But I think that's a pretty skewed sample.  "Out in the street" most Dem votes are pretty energized about both candidates.  I also expect that whoever ends up conceding will make a very strong statement that we have to heal our wounds and go on to defeat McCain, for the sake of our children, our country, our world, our future.

    And that such a statement will indeed help supporters of one to, at the least, vote for the other.


    I said a while back (none / 0) (#37)
    by Kathy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:46:53 AM EST
    that I would bet the house that Clinton approached Obama early on and offered him the VP slot, but Obama wouldn't take it.

    I think probably a unified ticket is the only way this will end peacefully, though I don't see either side giving an inch.  You don't run for president because you're passive and non-competitive.

    Also, Clinton will have much more power in the senate vs as VP.  Obama, on the other hand, would be foolish not to take the VP slot considering his short senate career.  He is much better in the figure-head role.

    And of course, either way, it would be the "assassination proof" ticket, because take one out and the other steps in...take both out and you've got President Pelosi.  Hahaha!


    Will never happen (none / 0) (#76)
    by JJE on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:13:32 AM EST
    the egos on both of them are far too big.

    Our server maxed out last night (none / 0) (#11)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:28:54 AM EST
    there is a great hunger for balanced blogging.
    thanks for providing it.

    The Obama photo and its likely source for Drudge (none / 0) (#13)
    by andrys on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:29:40 AM EST
    A copy of that photo has apparently been on the web for a long time, on an African news site.

    I looked last night for a more mischievous, well-timed copy of the photo and found one that was scanned on February 23 and posted February 24 to a proudly right-wing and very heavily-attended forum of activists, who are prone to mischief with online polls and other PR means. This was posted there and commented on a day before Drudge reported receiving an email about it.

      For details, see http://andrys1.blogspot.com
         or if it scrolls off after I put newer items on,

       more directly: http://tinyurl.com/3bljc5

    Re the now infamous photo: (none / 0) (#18)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:35:30 AM EST
    I was listening to the debate, not watching, when the photo issue came up.  Glanced up at the TV and, bingo, there was the photo yet again.  I started laughing because Obama looks so silly in the photo.  Can't really see this as MSNBC supporting Obama in the debate.

    Re the now infamous photo (none / 0) (#46)
    by andrys on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:55:11 AM EST
    Right.  I thought, it WOULD have been baaad if it was Clinton's band sending it around, to Drudge, because the reason for sending it would have been to link the headgear to conservatives' stereotypes of terrorists.

      So I'm happier to find that it was almost surely the Freeper band that made sure it was scanned and posted and then certainly emailed about.

      But when I saw that MSNBC was now ensuring that over a million people would see it, it was pretty ironic!

     (I remember being put into native attire when visiting a shop in Turkey...)


    The absolute best photo op of (none / 0) (#54)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:59:15 AM EST
    a public figure going native is that photo of Bush in the blue silk with yellow.  Not so much the photo of just him, but the photo of everyone in the same outfit.

    William F Buckley died (none / 0) (#14)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:30:12 AM EST

    German highest court outlaws computer taps (none / 0) (#17)
    by scribe on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:35:24 AM EST
    The German Constitutional court - their equivalent of our Supreme Court, has pretty much outlawed what they call (euphemistically) "On-line searching" ("online Durchsuchungen";  "Durchsuchungen" is what the police do when they toss a house, car, or such in a search).  That is, they have pretty much outlawed warrantless government wiretapping of computers and networks saying, in the words of a commentator on MDR:  "A computer is as private as a bedroom."

    Interestingly, this decision did not lead their 5 PM news but came third, after a couple economic issues.  

    Frankfurter Allegemeine Zeitung has an article which I will be translating.  They're headlining and calling it a milestone in the protection of privacy and civil rights.

    In the meantime, the Government, and particularly their Interior Minister, are deeply "disappointed" and are looking to have the judgment rapidly overturned, saying they may introduce a measure to do so as soon as tomorrow.

    A couple more things, following up:
    a) the FAZ article is in really poetical/high-end German and I'm probably going to have to take a day or so at the earliest.  And I have work which needs to get done, so don't be looking for a translation soon.  There are English language articles, like here.  Frankly, AP gets the whole tone of Schaeuble's statement wrong - he's major p*ssed and wants to "rasch umsetzen" this decision (rapidly overturn).  But, given the current campaign, we've gotten used to AP being full of sh*t.
    (b) it looks like the Court has taken a fundamental step towards walling off the computer as part of the private space of individual life.  That's awkward, but they seem to have recognized the integration of the computer into the everyday life of everyone and the need for privacy protections against the government.  In other words, they found a new fundamental right, Roe-like.
    (c) the FAZ comments that the Court has shown a real ability to understand the scope of computer technology, discussing things like keyloggers and capturing what the computer is doing from "listening" to the electronic leakage from the display and keyboard.  They may, repeat, may, have outlawed keyloggers and capturing that electronic leakage, comparing it to bugging someone's living room.  If you've seen "The Lives of Others", currently in rotation (though at 3 AM) on one of the cable movie nets, you'll get some understanding of E. German listening in. (If you haven't seen it, you should.)  And how brutal a comparison to wiretapping the computers such a statement should be considered.
    (d) The judgment requires an online search be done only pursuant to a judicial warrant, after application showing ample probable cause and imposes severe minimization requirements.
    (e) Said a constitutional/human rights lawyer commenting on MDR:  "We can be thankful for this constitutional court.  Since its founding in 1949, it has had the world's greatest competence in these areas (human rights).  It has functioned as it is supposed to."

    He got that right, in spades.

    Good. The "lives of others" won't (none / 0) (#21)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:37:47 AM EST
    include warrantless access to computer.  Now if only the U.S. courts had the same fortitude.  

    What reading won't commuicate (none / 0) (#32)
    by scribe on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:43:41 AM EST
    was the tone of the lawyer's speech when he said:

    "We can be thankful for this constitutional court.  Since its founding in 1949, it has had the world's greatest competence in these areas (human rights).  It has functioned as it is supposed to."

    In grave, strong and meaningful tones.  He knew what he was saying, and meant it.  His statement was full of (negative) reference to the pre-1949 German courts and to the East German "courts" which would have permitted it.  And, I suppose, with some reference to the spineless American courts which defer reflexively to the Executive.  I wish you could have heard it - I suppose that even if one didn't understand German they could understand what he said, just from the tone of it.


    Hasn't the US Supreme Court (none / 0) (#28)
    by Kathy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:41:43 AM EST
    commented on computer privacy recently vis-a-vis comparing password protection to a locked safe, in that you cannot compel someone to give you the combination to open a locked safe, yet you can compel them to give you a physical key that will unlock the safe?

    I think that was either the (none / 0) (#34)
    by scribe on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:44:41 AM EST
    Second Circuit or a NY District Court, following precedent.

    ah (none / 0) (#39)
    by Kathy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:49:12 AM EST
    thanks.  I didn't follow it closely, but I thought it was an important distinction (and a heads up to folks to buy Apples instead of PCs, because the Apple encryption is so tough that the NSA can't even break it...yet)

    Here, from Bloomberg (none / 0) (#71)
    by scribe on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:11:32 AM EST
    4::55 minutes (none / 0) (#26)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:40:34 AM EST
    Where do we apply for extra credit?

    odious he was (none / 0) (#41)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:51:21 AM EST
    but I still always loved listening to him.
    usually picked up a new word or two.

    Buckley's death (none / 0) (#51)
    by andrys on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:57:19 AM EST
    Me too.  He was an example of the days of at least civilized  disagreement, even if I disagreed with just about everything he said.  I most appreciated his Glenn Gould evenings though, both the Bach and the Richard Strauss.

    His son's books are quite clever (none / 0) (#56)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:00:36 AM EST
    and humorous.  

    William F. on Gould and Strauss?  Where?


    He was not always ... (none / 0) (#68)
    by desertswine on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:10:53 AM EST

    "Now listen, you queer, stop calling me a crypto-Nazi or I will sock you in your goddam face, and you will stay plastered." (to Gore Vidal).


    Ha. And we are criticizing (none / 0) (#74)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:13:07 AM EST

    Buckely and Russert (none / 0) (#80)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:14:33 AM EST
    are not even from the same planet.
    anyway I SAID he was odious.

    Yes you did. It just made (none / 0) (#92)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:24:01 AM EST
    me laugh instead of flinch when I read it because I could hear Buckley's voice pulling that one off.

    to Gore Vidal (none / 0) (#75)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:13:10 AM EST
    come on
    that was great.  and I am a queer.

    A taste of Ohio debate coverage... (none / 0) (#42)
    by NecSorteNecFato on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:51:24 AM EST
    From the Akron Beacon Journal, the most well-balanced piece I've read on the debate. They did endorse Clinton on their editorial page, but endorsements one way or the other should not preclude even journalistic coverage in the news sections, and this piece stays away from the pejoritives used for describing both of thier performances I've seen in some other "news" pieces.

    I have met SO many undecideds here in Canton, OH, and I think the articles which take such a negative tone to Clinton are tending to make people turned off by the obvious slant towards Obama, rather than inclined to dislike Hillary. There seem to be a lot of people interested in truly basing their opinions on the positions of these two, rather than going along with the "Obama is the clear nominee" rhetoric. It makes me have a lot of respect for these supposedly "low information" voters.

    Nec (5.00 / 1) (#45)
    by Kathy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:53:39 AM EST
    technically, they aren't considered "low information" until they vote for Clinton.

    Funny (none / 0) (#52)
    by NecSorteNecFato on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:58:01 AM EST
    how that works isn't it?

    Election '08 Decision Leaked (none / 0) (#50)
    by squeaky on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 10:56:48 AM EST
    By Deiblod

    This might be a problem for Obama (none / 0) (#60)
    by athyrio on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:05:34 AM EST
    This Rev. Wright gave his (and Mr. Obama's) church's highest honor to Louis Farrakhan, a well-known racist and bigot. When questioned about the matter, Mr. Obama said, "I decry racism and anti-Semitism in every form and strongly condemn the anti-Semitic statements made by Minister Farrakhan." Mr. Obama then also condemned his church's award to Mr. Farrakhan and his minister's close relationship with him. But Debbie Schlussel, an investigative reporter in Detroit, reports that despite Sen. Obama's attempt to distance himself from Mr. Farrakhan and his Nation of Islam, he still "employed and continues to employ several Farrakhan acolytes in high positions on his Illinois and U.S. Senate campaign and office staffs."

    Ms. Schlussel writes, "But it's not just that he employed these individuals in positions of power in his office. It's that when the former associate raised objections, he says Mr. Obama's position was that he saw nothing wrong with the Nation of Islam and didn't think it was a problem. If true - and the fact that Ms. Mason [another of the above-described Nation of Islam employees] still holds her prominent position bears that out - Obama's condemnation of Farrakhan, this month, is phony."


    I think this is where (none / 0) (#87)
    by Kathy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:19:34 AM EST
    the rubber meets the road.

    Obama has said that he will unite republicans and democrats, both of which have certain elements who would rather eat their own poo than compromise with the other.  Why would Obama not also seek to unite NOI members with the party, too?  Obama says he is willing to work with everyone, to sit down with any particular group and persuade them to come over to his way of thinking.  Is this the position he'll take with NOI?  He said as president that he'd sit down with Kim Jong Il.  Will he sit down with Farrakhan and try to bring him back into the fold?

    Because let's be serious here: this is the crux of Obama's electability argument, that he will bring disparate groups together.  Which groups?  And how will he achieve this unity?  Here is a perfect example to show the world exactly how his unity will work: how will Obama unite Farrakhan with the Jews?  How will he unite McClurkin with the gays?


    McCain Question (pls read!!) (none / 0) (#90)
    by A DC Wonk on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:22:45 AM EST
    I've been dying for an open thread in order to post this question to those who may have some insight here.

    OK -- here's the deal as I see it:

    1.  It seems that McCain, by offering his public financing as collateral (and other stuff -- including bypassing some states signature requirements to get on the ballot), has technically "benefited" from the public financing, and once that happens he is locked in.  

    2.  The above is the argument that FEC Chairman David Mason made in a letter to McCain's campaign (Mason is GOP, btw).  (McCain's defense is that the real benefit is the money, and he didn't actually take any money).

    3.  FEC Chairman Mason told the McCain campaign that McCain needs to formally request to withdraw from the system, and such request can not be granted until the FEC gets a quorum (right now there are three vacancies for the five spots).

    4.  My understanding is that if the above is true, McCain is now maxed out for primary money, and really can't spend any more money until Sept.  (Kind of ironic that McCain may be breaking the law here -- the McCain-Feingold law).

    5.  The DNC (and perhaps others) have filed a complaint with the FEC about all the above.

    OK -- here's my question:

    Why can't McCain act with impunity here?  The same "lack of quorum" that allegedly prevents him from withdrawing from the system, is the same "lack of quorum" that could get him in trouble, right?  (And the same "lack of quorum" that will ignore the DNC complaint).

    From McCain's point of view, he can simply ignore the law, and the worst that will happen is that after the election (which I'm sure he thinks will win), he'll have to pay a fine.  But if he wins, what does he care?  He's already president.  (According to his calculations).

    What am I missing here?  What possible motive does McCain now have to not completely ignore the FEC stuff on this?  How can McCain possibly get in trouble about his now, no matter how much he spends?  (In the court of opinion, all he has to say is "hey, I didn't take the money, I'm not in the system")

    all good points (none / 0) (#93)
    by Kathy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:27:11 AM EST
    And I have gotten zillions of emails from Dean et al asking me to protest McCain, and every time I write back and ask Dean (or whoever handles the email at the DNC) to please direct their efforts toward solving the issue of seating the FL and MI delegates.

    This McCain crap is right up there with Clemmons being called before Congress. I mean--seriously?  This is what's important to you right now?


    You know that when you Unsubscribe from (none / 0) (#96)
    by Florida Resident on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:32:38 AM EST
    the DNC mail list they ask you why.  I answered Cause I live in FLorida Duh!

    is it important? (none / 0) (#101)
    by A DC Wonk on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:38:07 AM EST
    Well, if it's true that McCain can't spend a single penny from now until Sept, I think that's plenty important, because that ought to seal his defeat, don't you think?

    McCain ahead of both (none / 0) (#94)
    by Paladin on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:30:48 AM EST
    Leading story in today's LA Times is a new poll that shows McCain leading both Obama and Hillary.  So, regardless of what happens on Tuesday, lots of work to do!

    Link: http://www.latimes.com/news/politics/la-na-poll27feb27,0,5452138.story

    Hm. (none / 0) (#97)
    by Kathy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:33:04 AM EST
    Obama's "electability" argument based on how he polls against McCain seems to be going out the window.  I hope he gets a new one soon.

    but still... (none / 0) (#103)
    by A DC Wonk on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:41:23 AM EST
    If you accept the poll, Obama still has an edge.

    It's one of many data points, but I think it's a it premature to say that the whole tack goes out the window when: (a) it's just one poll; and (b) that very poll shows Clinton doing worse than Obama.


    Rasmuessen (none / 0) (#106)
    by cannondaddy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 12:07:47 PM EST
    Has been doing daily head to heads for a while now.  McCain only started coming in ahead of Obama after the NYT story.  Clinton has not done better than Obama v. McCain for months now.

    Has any poll investigated a joint ticket? (none / 0) (#108)
    by cymro on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 12:22:06 PM EST
    I wonder if it is possible that some Democratic voters may be thinking, at this stage in the process: If my preferred candidate (Clinton or Obama) loses the primary, I will vote for McCain.

    This does not mean that they actually will vote that way, after the dust settles. They may be turned off by McCain's positions and come back to the Democratic fold. But that's not something that polling can really investigate today.

    So a more interesting question is, has anyone ever polled people to see how they would vote if both Clinton and Obama were on the Democratic ticket, in either order? I know this is a harder question to ask; they'd probably have to propose a Republican ticket too (like McCain/Huckabee) to ask the question fairly. But has anyone seen this question explored in a systematic way?


    Obama's "electability" (none / 0) (#102)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:39:44 AM EST
    and bear in mind these polls are before the smearing even starts.

    The highlight of last night's "debate" (none / 0) (#104)
    by chemoelectric on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 11:57:32 AM EST
    The highlight of last night's "debate" was my wife blowing her top after Hillary Clinton tried to depict Barack Obama as "soft on anti-semitism" instead of seconding Obama's denunciation of Farrakhan.

    I would observe generally that Barack Obama was simply honest throughout the "debate", seconding Hillary Clinton's words where appropriate, and pointing out where he thought he was a superior candidate. Hillary Clinton must have been doing more the search for a "knock-out blow", infantile behavior that all of us, unfortunately, encourage when we speak of these "debates" in such terms. (An alternative explanation is that Hillary Clinton thinks it anti-semitic to point out the impossibility of using a time-machine to remove Louis Farrakhan's words from history.)

    In case anyone missed this (none / 0) (#107)
    by NJDem on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 12:14:48 PM EST

    I think this article makes a very legitimate point.  It also, once again, shows the media's bias as this story would be all over the MSM if HRC had used this lame excuse for bypassing such an important issue.

    Great article (none / 0) (#110)
    by Paladin on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 12:36:21 PM EST
    Thanks for the link!  Unfortunately, this can't effectively be pushed by Hillary's campaign - she'll just be accused of being shrill.

    The info does need to get out to the MSM though, and it sounds like the author will pursue it through various channels.

    My fear is that all of this very important info that voters need in front of them to make informed decisions is coming way too late for the primaries, but will be in full throttle in time for the GE.  Not good.


    Beached Whale is the new Orphan in the Rushes (none / 0) (#109)
    by Ellie on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 12:28:00 PM EST
    Big (Doofus) Brother
    Wednesday, February 27, 2008
    -- by Dave

    Jonah Goldberg: It's time to admit that "diversity" is code for racism.

    Sure, we can do that.

    And while we're at it, we can go with some corrolaries:

    • "War" is code for peace.
    • "Ignorance" is code for strength.
    • "Fascism" is code for liberalism.

    'Cuz we're just doing a Newspeak exercise here, aren't we?

    Warning! Embedded links in quoted portion not included here; formatting in quoted portion may differ from original. JG may stink worst here as having degraded somewhat in transit.

    My Three Cents: cf the origins of Shut up, he explained.

    Jonathon Alter and Jennifer Palmieri were on (none / 0) (#115)
    by jawbone on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 01:40:30 PM EST
    To The Point just now, with Alter saying the Clinton camp is just unhappy that the MCM isn't doing to Obama what the MCM did to the Clintons during the 90's. No realization that the MCM is still doing "it" to Hillary and Bill. Wow.

    Jennifer Palmieri as the Democratic representative said Hillary seemed edgy and nervous last night, showed her desperation at losing, that she shouldn't have gone after the MCM the way she did (mentioning the SNL skit and how the moderators were acting), and several other things culminating in her saying it's about time for her to leave the race, that she isn't going to get the percentages she needs out of Southern states with high percentages of black voters. (I was going in and out of the computer room, since I can't get the AM station which carries this program, so may not have heard every point.)

    Now some guy is on who is pointing out how free trade Obama is.  Earlier Obama had sung the praises of Rubin and said it's just too bad those Maytag workers lost their jobs, but there's nothing that can be done. Says neither candidate is addressing these problems. Please, Warren, repeat the name: Aha, Rick MacArthur.

    Gotta run now.


    Wholly off topic, but (none / 0) (#116)
    by scribe on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 01:50:05 PM EST
    necessary to note:  Long-time Pittsburgh Steelers boradcaster, and inventor of the "Terrible Towel", Myron Cope, has died.

    We will not soon see the likes of him again.  He will be missed.

    It should be noted that, for all the millions of Terrible Towels sold, he took nothing - the money went to charity.  

    May he rest in peace.

    Obma's image (none / 0) (#118)
    by PlayInPeoria on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 02:44:08 PM EST
    Why the Obama "Brand" Is Working
    To start, he has this way of writing Obama in upper and lowercase in a serif font and juxtaposing it with that "O" symbol he has--the blue ring with red and white stripes disappearing into it, making the white form inside the blue look like what I suppose is meant to be a rising sun.

    Article talks about how Sen Obama is marketing his image. I was facinated about how particular they are about campaign signs.

    The article even praises Sen Obama for being able to achive this.  


    The thing that sort of flabbergasts me as a professional graphic designer is that, somewhere along the way, they decided that all their graphics would basically be done in the same typeface, which is this typeface called Gotham. [See "Change We Can Believe In" sign, above] If you look at one of his rallies, every single non-handmade sign is in that font. Every single one of them. And they're all perfectly spaced and perfectly arranged. Trust me. I've done graphics for events --and I know what it takes to have rally after rally without someone saying, "Oh, we ran out of signs, let's do a batch in Arial." It just doesn't seem to happen. There's an absolute level of control that I have trouble achieving with my corporate clients.

    Then it struck me....I'm now worried that we are going to a have a Pres that is more worried about his image than his substance. Will polls be the guide?

    Boyd Coddington (none / 0) (#119)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 03:56:48 PM EST
    Prof. Sean Wilentz rewrites history, Obama attack (none / 0) (#120)
    by Aaron on Wed Feb 27, 2008 at 05:23:43 PM EST
    Here's one that all the Obama haters will just love, and I imagine that Armando will create a post praising this article and Sean Wilentz as some great speaker of truth, knowing his proclivities.

    I have a different perspective of course, I find this to be one of the most despicable pieces of vicious slander and dishonest rewrites of history that it has ever been my misfortune to read, coming from a man who still does not reveal in these publications that he is a longtime friend of the Clinton family and an open endorser of the Clinton campaign. This "article" is by far the worst, in what has become a series of openly biased anti-Obama rants to be found anywhere on the net.

    I condemn Wilentz, and I condemn Marty Peretz the senior editor at TNR for allowing this trash to be published.  I post it here because I know that many of you will be eating it up with a spoon.

     Bon appétit.

    Race Man: How Barack Obama played the race card and blamed Hillary Clinton