Thursday, June 26, 2008
Saturday, June 21, 2008
Aside from the fact that is incorrect, it got me asking myself what other things Barack Obama thinks we shouldn't do because the benefits are a few years down the road.
I guess he thinks we shouldn't invest in new energy technologies because workable solutions such as hydrogen powered cars, large scale solar or wind energy projects won't be viable for at least a decade.
I guess he thinks we shouldn't do cancer, Parkinson's, AIDS or other basic medical research because cures are at least a decade away.
I guess negotiating or dealing with Iran is out as some security experts say that they are at least a decade away from developing a workable and deliverable nuclear device.
I guess he thinks we shouldn't do anything about air pollution or greenhouse gases since the worst effects (assuming they exist) aren't predicted to occur for decades.
I reasonably sure that prosecuting the war against Radical Islamic Extremists is out given that we won't be able to win in less than a decade.
For a guy who spends a lot of time pontificating about "change" and "the future" he sure seems to have a short time frame for what change can occur in the future. I would love to hear his explanation but I am assuming he thinks he shouldn't do that.
Friday, June 20, 2008
"God, Republicans are saps. They think that they’re running against some academic liberal who wouldn’t wear flag pins on his lapel, whose wife isn’t proud of America and who went to some liberationist church where the pastor damned his own country. They think they’re running against some naïve university-town dreamer, the second coming of Adlai Stevenson..."
"...But as recent weeks have made clear, Barack Obama is the most split-personality politician in the country today. On the one hand, there is Dr. Barack, the high-minded, Niebuhr-quoting speechifier who spent this past winter thrilling the Scarlett Johansson set and feeling the fierce urgency of now. But then on the other side, there’s Fast Eddie Obama, the promise-breaking, tough-minded Chicago pol who’d throw you under the truck for votes..."
Brooks goes on to explain Obama's history of old school politics. That he is smart and calculating, and has laid out a path for himself that any old-school Chigago politician would be proud of...
"...Back when he was in the Illinois State Senate, Dr. Barack could have taken positions on politically uncomfortable issues. But Fast Eddie Obama voted “present” nearly 130 times. From time to time, he threw his voting power under the truck.
Dr. Barack said he could no more disown the Rev. Jeremiah Wright than disown his own grandmother. Then the political costs of Rev. Wright escalated and Fast Eddie Obama threw Wright under the truck.
Dr. Barack could have been a workhorse senator. But primary candidates don’t do tough votes, so Fast Eddie Obama threw the workhorse duties under the truck.
Dr. Barack could have changed the way presidential campaigning works. John McCain offered to have a series of extended town-hall meetings around the country. But favored candidates don’t go in for unscripted free-range conversations. Fast Eddie Obama threw the new-politics mantra under the truck.
And then on Thursday, Fast Eddie Obama had his finest hour. Barack Obama has worked on political reform more than any other issue. He aspires to be to political reform what Bono is to fighting disease in Africa. He’s spent much of his career talking about how much he believes in public financing. In January 2007, he told Larry King that the public-financing system works. In February 2007, he challenged Republicans to limit their spending and vowed to do so along with them if he were the nominee. In February 2008, he said he would aggressively pursue spending limits. He answered a Midwest Democracy Network questionnaire by reminding everyone that he has been a longtime advocate of the public-financing system.
Full David Brook's article The Two Obama's
Tuesday, June 17, 2008
Last night at an Obama rally in Detroit, Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm, who had previously endorsed Senator Clinton, took to the stage to show her solidarity with Barack Obama now that the voters (or the party insiders as the case may be) have handed him the nomination. But Granholm, like Team McCain, still seems to hold Senator Clinton in high esteem--she tried to praise the former first lady as a "great American."
She couldn't even get the words out before the crowd turned on her and began booing. Here's the tape, watch it for yourself. We just want to assure Senator Clinton's supporters that their attendance at McCain rallies will be warmly recieved, by Senator McCain and his supporters. Of course, if Senator Clinton wants to show up to any of our events in person...consider this an open invitation.
Monday, June 16, 2008
"...I was a volunteer field organizer in El Paso, Texas and investigated irregularities for three weeks after the election.
As a Democratic Coordinated Campaign Regional Director in 1996 and as a volunteer on campaigns in the 1990s, I have the ethical obligation to report what I saw in Texas.
When California 22nd CD Republican candidate Tom Bordonaro famously tried to suppress the vote by phone banking under a false name, many of us in the Capps campaign immediately said that we would walk away from a campaign if our side were similarly unethical. That moment kept replaying through my head election night in El Paso. Simply put, the Obama campaign made Tom Bordonaro look ethical.
Lois Capps is correct when she wrote that Sen. Obama is inspiring. However, many of the actions of his campaign that I witnessed and investigated are criminal.
I know this information is jarring, and puts DNC delegates in an uncomfortable situation, but if the time comes for delegates to endorse or get behind a consensus candidate, this information should be available. As I wrote to Rep. Capps, I apologize for not illuminating this earlier.
My observations in Texas were that caucuses were broadly illegitimate. In a few well-run counties, Hillary's caucus vote was the same or better than the popular vote, but in chaotic counties, she fell behind by double digits. While Texas is the only state to have both a binding popular vote and a caucus vote, we saw similar results in Washington State, where Obama's numbers plunged in the unofficial primary compared to the caucuses .
This stands out: only four major Texas counties were orderly enough to report most of their caucus results election night, and in three of these, caucus preference mirrored the popular vote (HRC popular/caucus): El Paso (69/75), Austin/Travis (37/34), San Antonio/Bexar (56/57). In the case of Austin, I have read reports that that both sides ran their caucuses well.
These counties had exceptional organizations, but it should not take heroics to run a fair election.
On election night in El Paso, it became obvious that the Obama field campaign was designed to steal caucuses. Prior to that, it was impossible for me to imagine the level of attempted fraud and disruption we would see. It was far worse than any GOP campaign I have organized against on the Central Coast, worse than Tom Bordonaro's, worse than Andrea Seastrand's, worse than the Dole campaign whose supporters vandalized our headquarters.
We saw stolen precincts where Obama organizers fabricated counts, made false entries on sign-in sheets, suppressed delegate counts, and suppressed caucus voters. We saw patterns such as missing electronic access code sheets and precinct packets taken before the legal time, like elsewhere in the state. Obama volunteers illegally took convention materials state-wide, with attempts as early as 6:30 am. Some of this was presented in a press release from Clinton Campaign Counsel Lyn Utrecht, but I witnessed worse than what she disclosed.
In one example of fraud that I witnessed, one of my precinct captains, an elderly Hispanic woman, called me to report that BHO supporters had illegally seized control of the convention. During our series of phone calls, Mrs. "A." reported that the Obama people took the convention materials and did not have a legal election of officers. Like nearly all of El Paso, BHO people would have lost such an election in this majority-Hillary, Hispanic, mostly elderly precinct convention.
The Obama people ordered Mrs. A. to sit across the room during the delegate calculation, and excluded Hillary supporters from the process. Mrs. A. overheard an Obama supporter call in a false delegate count to Austin. In a 13 delegate precinct where Obama should have won approximately 4 delegates, the Obama supporters attempted to award 19 delegates to Obama. This was not innocent. During my attempts at cell phone diplomacy, the Obama "chair" hung up on me, and refused to talk to the ethical Obama organizer I was paired with at another precinct convention. As with all major attempts at fraud that we identified, this delegate count was rectified in private at the county TDP headquarters, according to TDP rules, but there were no public charges or sanctions. It is my opinion that people should be in jail, but there is not a mechanism for this sort of prosecution, certainly not within TDP rules.
Although I have only volunteered in one state, virtually every Clinton staffer I have talked to has similar stories from other caucus states. While the Hillary field campaign operates and feels very much like typical Democratic campaigns, the Obama campaign is something new to Democratic politics. From my perspective, it looks like it has copied the worst attributes of Republican campaigns, but with unprecedented zeal.
Ironically, only in very well-organized areas like El Paso were we able to even identify the scale of the attempted irregularities. In these areas, we were also able to rebuff most attempts at fraud, correct fraudulent delegate counts, and protect our voters. In less well-organized areas, we did not have enough eyes and ears to identify or stop fraud, and our numbers plunged.
Although affidavits have not been made public, I have copies and records of the voter complaints for which I did interviews. Although the Hillary campaign has not gone public with evidence of fraud, the national legal team has approximately 200 such affidavits and 2000 voter complaints. The campaign intends to win the popular vote without airing these charges in public, but I suspect the campaign will provide authorities with this evidence upon request.
My own sense is that this information should not be withheld from delegates, since it both casts the Obama campaign as stunningly unethical, and it severely undermines the general credibility of caucuses. It also points out that perception and reality are upside down. The campaign that will "do anything to win," including the illegal acts documented in affidavits, is not Hillary's...."
Sunday, June 15, 2008
Barack Hussein Obama : Raising The Mammoth!
Do any of you remember a few years back when the Discovery Channel aired it’s special
“Raising The Mammoth?” Well, I sure as hell do.
I don’t remember exactly how long Discovery promoted this much anticipated television event but it sure as heck seemed like it went on for at least a year. They had advertisements in every issue of their magazine, during every commercial break on their network. They had intense, dramatic and very well produced TV ads running on practically any channel you ‘clicked’ to. They advertised in news-papers, radio, flyers . . .they even got local papers to pick up the story.
As the “television event”, (and that is what they built it into, an actual ‘event’) drew near the ads became even more intense. TV ads were turned into “mini-epics”. The “promotion” of this “Mammoth Event” seemed to dwarf any and all programming on TV for the entire season. The phrasing and verbiage changed as well.
Discovery began by “suggesting” you would or should watch. They suggested “others” would be watching. They “implied” it could be a “television event”. They suggested the program would change TV, change your thinking!
Around the last month of the promotion and “hype” they were literally “Telling You” that you “could not miss this television event!” They were “telling you” that you were going to watch. They were telling you that “The World” would be watching. They were telling you that is was going to “change your thinking . . . forever!”
Saturday, June 14, 2008
MyBO is often credited in mainstream media with helping build Obama's remarkable volunteer operation. At the same time, the conventional wisdom among webbies is that internal social networks don't work. Nobody wants to create yet another profile (particularly on a site with such a limited audience), and best to concentrate your energies on existing social networks like Facebook, MySpace, and LinkedIn.
My initial runthrough found many ways in which MyBO failed to live up to the hype, including:
- The friending feature, which is at the core of most social networks, is nearly useless. I may have been a stranger in a strange land, but I couldn't find anyone on the site whom I'd have liked to "friend." By contrast, today's nichiest social networks, like Brightkite, Mento, and FriendFeed, make it easy to find dozens of people you already know by offering a contact importer (where you import your Gmail/Yahoo/AOL/etc. address books to see who else is already online). Chris Hughes, MyBO's primary manager (and Facebook co-founder) only has 153 friends, the network average for all of Facebook.
- User blogs seems like kind of a throwaway feature. There is a single page with the latest posts in reverse chronological order, and that's pretty much it in terms of discoverability -- no posts in the sidebar of every MyBO page or latest comments as in Drupal/Scoop/SoapBlox. There have also only been 11,460 user blog posts off a base of over 800,000 user accounts, suggesting most people don't waste their time with maintaining a blog on the site. By contrast, in the first two weeks of The Next Right we've produced 480 user blogs from 806 registered users, a more than 1 to 2 ratio of user blogs to users.
- Personal fundraising pages are a really nice touch -- but not a game-changer in terms of money raised. The largest groups on the site had only raised in the hundreds of dollars for Obama. Even if we're charitable and allow $1 million raised through all such pages, that's a drop in the bucket compared to the tens of millions raised through e-mail, the website, and Google AdWords landing pages. This may be an example of the vaunted "long tail" being a great talking point but little more. People still find it easiest to give based on a direct appeal from the top.
Despite all this, My.BarackObama.com still works, and it's not because recreated the features of a social network. If they've succeeded, it's because they've harkened back to the early days of the web, to the primary way that the online grassroots connected with each other before blogs: e-mail groups.
Groups are probably MyBO's most powerful feature, with over 16,000 of them created. Most crucially, there are 6,639 local Obama groups. You won't see many mega-groups of the "Million Strong" variety. But you will see local activist groups in virtually every state -- often at the county and town level -- with hundreds of members each. Bucks County for Obama, Colorado Springs for Obama, Philly for Obama, and Tucson for Obama are just a few that reach that threshold.
When one joins the groups, it's not just a casual connection. You are automatically opted in for a discussion list a la a Yahoo or a Google group, the underlying feature set of which has not changed since the late '90s. In fact the title of this post is a throwback to that era, to the eGroups service (that later became Yahoo Groups) that I used to create the Bush 2000 mailing list that is still in existence today. This isn't rocket science. This stuff been around for more than a decade.
For group creators, the ability to mass message all your group's members is the key value proposition behind social networking groups. This why groups with up to 1,200 members on Facebook are useful and can get a response as powerful as e-mail -- but you turn into a pumpkin once you reach 1,200 and messaging is shut off.
MyBO is even more powerful because the messaging is not one-way -- it's a community where anyone can reply. And the messages contain useful information for the local activist -- reminders about local events, news from activists campaigning for delegate slots, even links to on-message videos -- all in the most familiar format available: e-mail. I've reproduced a sample message from my local Falls Church for Obama group below.
When you think about it, this is the kind of networking feature that it makes sense for campaigns to offer. Unlike a Facebook, your sense of connection to an e-group is not tied to the underlying technology but to the group itself. It doesn't matter as much if it's a Yahoo Group, a Google Group, or an Obama group, just as long as the right people are on it. By building it, you're not competing with a platform with millions of users, but for groups of hundreds.
Hosting it on the campaign site also weeds out the non-Obama groups you'd find at a Google or a Yahoo. This is useful to the user. And it directs people to locally based activism. That's smart.
Friday, June 13, 2008
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
Unfortunately, Susan Rice's statement regarding the Kennedy Khrushchev meeting, "Thank God he did because if he hadn't we would have not been able to resolve the Cuban Missile Crisis" is completely false. In fact historians agree that this meeting fueled the Cuban Missile Crisis.
The Weekly Standand, in detailing the Kennedy Khrushchev meeting, quotes NYT columnist James Reston who interviewed President Kennedy right after his meeting with Khrushchev,
"Reston reported that Kennedy said just enough for Reston to conclude that Khrushchev "had studied the events of the Bay of Pigs" and that he had "decided that he was dealing with an inexperienced young leader who could be intimidated and blackmailed." Kennedy said to Reston that Khrushchev had "just beat [the] hell out of me" and that he had presented Kennedy with a terrible problem: "If he thinks I'm inexperienced and have no guts, until we remove those ideas we won't get anywhere with him. So we have to act."Kennedy responded to the meeting with a congressional request for a dramatic increase in defense spending, and a significant increase in the size of the military. Khrushchev responded to Kennedy's actions with above ground nuclear testing and erecting the Berlin Wall. The tensions between the US and Soviet Union dramatically increased due to the Kennedy Khrushchev meeting; the Cuban Missile Crisis followed.
Susan Rice's statement is simply false. There is no historical record of the Kennedy Khrushchev meeting being at all helpful in resolving the Cuban Missile Crisis and actually the exact opposite true that an inexperienced leader was bullied into an arms race.
'Obama Advisor Susan Rice's Major Historical/Foreign Policy Error' first published at Purple People Vote
Saturday, June 7, 2008
"...The poeple linked to Senator Obama grew to political maturity in the extreme wings of the late 60s student and antiwar movements. They adopted some of the worst forms of sectarian and authoritarian politics. They helped undermine the emergence of a healthy relationship between students and others in American society who were becoming interested in alternative views of social, political and economic organization. In fact, at the time, some far more constructive activists had a hard time comprehending gorups like the Weather Underground. Their tactics were so damaging that some on the left thought that government or right wing elements helped create them. There is some evidence, in fact, that that was true (for example, the Cointelpro effort of the federal government.)
Today, however, many of these individuals continue to hold political views that hardened in that period. Many of them have joined up with other wings of the late 60s and 70s movements, in particular the pro-China maoists elements of that era and are now playing a role in the labor movement and elsewhere. And yet this question of Obama's links to people from this milieu has not been thoroughly explored by any of the many thousands of journalists, bloggers and political operatives looking so closely at Obama...."
For more information:
"...Obama Has Pledged To Reject Money From Federal Lobbyists And PACs Repeatedly:
Obama: "I just want to make sure that we understand: I don't take money from federal lobbyists. I don't take money from PACs." (Sen. Barack Obama, MSNBC Presidential Debate, Las Vegas, NV, 1/15/08)
Obama: "I'm not in this race to continue the special-interest-driven politics of the last eight years. I'm in this race to end it. I've been taking on lobbyists throughout my career in Illinois." (Sen. Barack Obama, Remarks At A Town Hall Meeting, Billings, MT, 5/19/08)
Obama: "I believe I can bring about that kind of change - because I'm the only candidate in this race who's actually worked to take power away from lobbyists by passing historic ethics reforms in Illinois and in the U.S. Senate. And I'm the only candidate who isn't taking a dime from Washington lobbyists. They have not funded my campaign, they will not run my administration, and they will not drown out the voices of the American people when I'm President of the United States." (Sen. Barack Obama, Remarks To The Pennsylvania AFL-CIO, Philadelp hia, PA, 4/2/08)
Obama Even Banned PAC And Lobbyist Money From The DNC:
Obama Prohibited The DNC From Receiving Contributions From PACs And Registered Federal Lobbyists. "Barack Obama put his stamp on the party Thursday, announcing the Democratic National Committee would no longer accept donations from political action committees or federal lobbyists. That brings the party in line with his campaign's policy." (Matt Kelley, "DNC Will Refuse Funds From Lobbyists, PACs," USA Today, 6/6/08)
Obama: "We will not take a dime from Washington lobbyists or special interest PACS - we're going to change how Washington works. They will not fund my party, they will not run our White House, and they will not drown out the voice of the American people when I am president of the United States of America." (Sunlen Miller, "Obama Commends DNC For Cutting Lobbyist Contributions," ABC News' "Political Radar" Blog, 6/5/08)
But The New Policy Will Not Apply To Former Lobbyists, Unregistered Lobbying Firm Partners, Or State Lobbyists:
The Lobbyist Ban At The DNC Does Not Apply To Former Lobbyists, Unregistered Lobbying Firm Partners, Or State Lobbyists. "Sen. Barack Obama's decision to tell the Democratic National Committee to stop taking money from lobbyists isn't likely to dent fundraising efforts because the policy only applies to current federal lobbyists, experts say. The presumptive Democratic presidential nominee's decree doesn't rule out contributions from past lobbyists, unregistered lobbying firm partners or statehouse lobbyists." (Jim McElhatton, "Obama Decree On Funding Limited To Current Lobbyists," The Washington Times, 6/6/08)..."
"...ALI ABUNIMAH: I don’t know if they’ve been asked in a debate, but whenever they have been asked, they have all gone out of their way to express full support for what Israel is doing. Barack Obama is not distinguished from the rest of the pack, except by for how far he has moved to try to appease AIPAC and pro-Israel movements.
I remember, Amy—I knew Barack Obama for many years as my state senator—when he used to attend events in the Palestinian community in Chicago all the time.
I remember personally introducing him onstage in 1999, when we had a major community fundraiser for the community center in Deheisha refugee camp in the occupied West Bank. And that’s just one example of how Barack Obama used to be very comfortable speaking up for and being associated with Palestinian rights and opposing the Israeli occupation. And just yesterday, he apparently sent a letter to Zalmay Khalilzad, the US ambassador at the UN, to urge the US not to allow any resolution to pass criticizing Israel and saying how Israel was forced to impose this barbaric medieval siege on Israel.
None of the other candidates in the mainstream have spoken out for Palestinian rights. The only ones who have taken forceful positions opposing the current US strategy are Dennis Kucinich on the Democratic side and Ron Paul on the Republican side. The mainstream are all perfectly comfortable with the war crimes that Israel is committing, no matter how much they talk about human rights elsewhere...."
While he was in the Illinois State Senate, Barack Obama was endorsed by the Marxist New Party.
"...He defended John Hinkley, Jr. after the latter’s attempt to assassinate President Ronald Reagan. He defended former Bolivian Defense Minister Carlos Sanchez-Berzain, a human rights violator accused of 67 deaths. He was a “personal attorney” for Kofi Annan in the UN Oil for Food scandal and he provided “special counsel” to Bill Clinton during his impeachment trial. Currently, high powered attorney Greg Craig of the DC-based Williams and Connolly law firm, is defending Pedro Miguel Gonzales, President of the Panamanian legislature, accused of murdering U.S. Army Sgt. Zak Hernandez. And he’s a senior foreign policy advisor to presumptive Democratic nominee Sen. Barack Obama. A poster child for limousine liberal lawyers, Craig’s participation in the Obama campaign may give rise to the kind of conflict of interest..."
More: Ericka Anderson's Human Events column on Greg Craig.
Wednesday, June 4, 2008
When Barack Obama ran for office the first time, he manipulated his opponents to the point where they were unable to run for office. His tactics were petty, technical, and brutal. What he did was not illegal, just "Chicago". In order to run for the state senate in Illinois, he had to take out Alice Palmer, who mentored him. In 1996 he made sure he was the only person on the ballot. This is a CNN report!
Tuesday, June 3, 2008
Article continued at The Pink Flamingo
The following video chronicles 20 divisive and nasty remarks made by Reverend Wright. It’s a ten minute video, but it shows why their is such doubt around Senator Obama’s statements that he was unaware of how controversial his pastor was.
First posted at Blogs4McCain