Saturday, September 04, 2004

Poll - Itics II

Boy oh boy, that one is just too clever to let it die...

Another poll shows Bush with the double-digit lead. It seems strange that Zogby doesn't mirror either this or the Time/CNN poll -- however, Zogby didn't include respondents from Friday; maybe the Bush speech was just that good.

Regardless, Kerry needs to get his ducks in a row and start moving. Maybe shutting down for the month of August wasn't so clever after all.

Bush has opened up a double-digit lead in a second poll released after the wrap-up of the Republican National Convention. The Newsweek poll showed Bush at 52 percent, Democrat John Kerry at 41 percent and independent Ralph Nader at 3 percent.

Kerry had a 49-42 edge while Nader had 3 percent in a Newsweek poll released right after the Democratic National Convention.

The poll of 1,008 registered voters was taken Thursday and Friday and has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.


Teixeira To Dems -- Step Back From That Ledge

Ruy Teixeira, who knows a thing or three about polling, weighs in on the Time poll.

The Time poll, conducted 8/31-9/2, has Bush ahead by 11, 52-41 in a 3-way LV matchup that includes Nader. (Time presumably will eventually release the 2-way LV matchup. I'm doubtful we'll ever see RV results.) How plausible is this result?

Well, it's certainly possible that Bush was as far ahead during the convention as this poll suggests. But all other available polls taken during the convention contradict this result.

In an attempt to compare apples to apples, here are Bush-Kerry results from contemporaneous 3-way LV matchups (except Rasmussen, where only a 2-way LV result is available), with Bush's margin in parentheses:

Zogby, 8/30-9/2: 46 Bush-43 Kerry (+3)
ARG, 8/30-9/1: 47 Bush-47 Kerry (tie)
Rasmussen, 8/31-9/2: 49 Bush-45 Kerry (+4)

In this company, 52 Bush-41 Kerry (+11) certainly sticks out. Could it have anything to do with the different dates included in these surveys, even though they are very close? Well, the Rasmussen data are from exactly same period as the Time data (8/31-9/2).

But if you are skeptical of the Rasmussen data, consider the Zogby data. The Zogby data only include an additional day (8/30) when compared to the Time data. But perhaps 8/30 was a very pro-Kerry day since the Republican convention had just started. However, for Zogby and Time to matchup (have Bush leading by 11) for the three days they share, Kerry would have to be leading by about 21 points in Zogby on the day (8/30) they do not share. I rather doubt that is the case.

The simplest hypothesis then is that the Time poll, for this period, is exceptionally pro-Bush and therefore should be viewed with skepticism.


Friday, September 03, 2004


Ha ha ha... Oh beg your pardon, but that was a good one...

Via Josh Marshall, what should we think about this new Time/CNN poll?

Time Magazine's poll of likely voters, conducted over the course of the convention: Bush 52%, Kerry 41%, Nader 3%. Zogby, over the same period and also of likely voters, Bush 46%, Kerry 44%. ARG, covering through Wednesday Sept. 1st, also among likely voters, Bush 48%, Kerry 47%.

UPDATE: And doesn't this Washington Post article contradict it on some level?

"Undecideds Unswayed by Bush's Speech"

CLAYTON, Mo., Sept. 3 - Half a dozen undecided voters who gathered here to watch President Bush's acceptance speech made it clear before he took the podium that they had serious doubts about his leadership and his political choices. After listening to 62 minutes of carefully crafted oratory, Christopher A. Jackson found himself leaning ever so slightly the president's way.

But, then, after listing all that bothered him about the speech, Jackson announced that he still wasn't sure.

"I honestly don't trust the guy," said Jackson, 41, a businessman and registered independent.


Fuck You Very Much

This is from John Kerry's remarks yesterday. I grabbed it from Kos, and even though it's everywhere by now, I sure haven't gotten enough of it.

We all saw the anger and distortion of the Republican convention. For the past week, they attacked my patriotism and my fitness to serve as commander in chief. Well, here's my answer. I'm not going to have my commitment to defend this country questioned by those who refused to serve when they could have and by those who have misled the nation into Iraq.

The vice president even called me unfit for office last night. I guess I'll leave it up to the voters whether five deferments makes someone more qualified to defend this nation than two tours of duty.

Of course, following the comments, the GOP was able to produce this footage of Kerry from an earlier campaign appearance.

"And following my tour of Vietnam, I welcomed an eternity of service patrolling the river Styx. As the tortured cries of lost souls filled my ears, like the song of so many angels, I bathed in the blood of a thousand sinners -- and I laughed. And shall you elect me president, that blood of the River Styx will pour over into the streets of Middle America, unleashing a wave of complete and utter amorality. Your churches will be burned until naught but smoldering ash litters the ground they once occupied. Your Christian values will be enervated! Abortions will be mandatory, atheism will run rampant, queers will marry! Network television will no longer be regulated -- the new NBC shall show nothing but a continuous loop of Janet Jackson's breast -- and I, John Kerry, the Devil, will personally force your child to view every second of it. And then finally, when the sewers of America are awash with discarded value-systems -- and Topeka, Kansas resembles a modern Gomorrah -- I will march to the top of a hill composed of aborted fetuses, and I will declare: 'This is John Kerry's America!' BWAH HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!!!!!!!!! ...and then I will enquire as to whether anyone has a baby I can eat."


Thursday, September 02, 2004

Jingle All The Way To The Bank

President Bush, in tandem with CA. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, plans to unveil a new economic plan tonight, based on comments made by the former actor turned-politician on Tuesday evening.

"To those critics who are so pessimistic about our economy, I say: 'Don't be economic girlie-men!"

Early indicators, based on an interview conducted with Schwarzenegger this morning, suggest that the plan will unfold thusly:

"If you are an economic girlyman, and
can afford to rent only film this year,
rent my hilarious 1994 classic --

"If you can afford to rent two, rent Junior, and
the mischievous holiday romp: Jingle All The Way.
Me + Sinbad = comedy masterpiece."


If There's A Bigger Ass Than Zell Miller...

I haven't met him.

Turncoat Senator Zell Miller (D-GA) imploded last night on Hardball, following his convention speech.

NOTE: Due to where the "Applause" lines are inserted in the transcript, it may seem like the crowd was cheering for Zell; however, poking around the rest of the text -- and elsewhere online -- it appears the audience was mostly liberal, and cheered whenever Matthews challenged the Senator.

MATTHEWS: Senator, please.

MILLER: You know, I wish we...


MILLER: I wish we lived in the day where you could challenge a person to a duel.


MILLER: Now, that would be pretty good.
Don't ask me, don't pull that...


MATTHEWS: Can you can come over? I need you, Senator. Please come over.

MILLER: Wait a minute. Don't pull that kind of stuff on me, like you did that young lady [ed. -- Michele Malkin] when you had her there, browbeating her to death. I am not her. I am not her.



MATTHEWS: Let me tell you, she was suggesting that John Kerry purposely shot himself to win a medal. And I was trying to correct the record.

MILLER: You get in my face, I am going to get back in your face.


MILLER: The only reason you are doing it is because you are standing way over there in Herald Square.

Could one classify this as "pulling an O'Reilly"?

O'REILLY: That's true. Now, if I sounded angry, I was. Imagine sitting next to somebody calling you a liar for that period of time. If that happened 200 years ago, there would have been a duel, and trust me, he [ed. -- Al Franken] would have lost.


Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Who The Hell Is Karl Rove? (AP Edition)

Via Pandagon, this is what you call "rapid response."

NEW YORK (AP) - White House strategist Karl Rove said Wednesday that Sen. John Kerry had tarnished the records of fellow Vietnam veterans with his anti-war protests, prompting a blistering response from the Democrat's campaign.

"Who in the hell is Karl Rove, talking about John Kerry's war record?" asked retired Air Force Gen. Merrill McPeak. Another Kerry backer called on President Bush's top political adviser to resign.


Schwarzenegger To Poor -- "Piss Off"

Apparently, the Terminator thinks that the 12.5% (up.4% from 2003) of Americans living in poverty should just toughen up.

"To those who are pessimistic of our economy, I say don't be economic girlymen."

At least he's staying
on message.

George Bush's allies at the Chamber of Commerce took a whack at workers who have lost their jobs to outsourcing when Chamber CEO Tom Donohue told those workers to “stop whining.” More than one million jobs have been lost to outsourcing on President Bush's watch.

"Awww, look at the poor little baby! Look at him cry!
His mother can only afford to change his diaper once a
day. Ha ha ha! He is an economic girlyman!"


Tuesday, August 31, 2004

It's Evolution Baby

From the August 30 Baltimore Sun:

Steele and Ehrlich still talk about how supporters of former Lt. Gov. Kathleen Kennedy Townsend tossed Oreo cookies at Steele during the lone gubernatorial debate in 2002, a symbolic slur that suggested because he was a Republican he was white on the inside and black on the outside.

Convinced that these two gents were embellishing their story, I decided to track the evolution of the "Oreo Tale."

What do you know? I was right. This one has grown from one Oreo rolling to Steele's feet during the debate -- an isolated incident that would be impossible to prove or disprove -- to supporters of Kathleen Kennedy Towsend showering Steele with Oreos, en masse.

This may seem trivial, whether the incident involved one cookie or a thousand, but in truth, it's important. One person tossing an Oreo at Steele is a misguided knucklehead, but an entire group throwing cookies paints the MD Democratic Party as intolerant of black republicans.

In addition, the only sources for these allegations are Steele, Ehrlich, and spokesman Paul Schurwick. The Baltimore Sun, nor any other publication which I could find, bothered to verify this story with independent sources.

This is a report from
Captial News Service, which mentions not only that the sources of the allegations, but how Steele recalled the event back in 2002.

At the candidates' only televised debate in late September, there were reports that Townsend supporters passed out Oreo cookies to represent Steele, joking he was black on the outside but white in the middle.

Paulson denied the incident happened and said the only documented accusation came from Ehrlich spokesman Paul Schurick.

Steele, however, said an Oreo cookie rolled to his feet during the debate.

"Maybe it was just someone having their snack, but it was there," Steele said. "If it happened, shame on them if they are that immature and that threatened by me."

Here is how Bob Ehrlich was spinning it by the end of October, courtesy of The Baltimore Sun.

The audience who gathered at a Jewish school yesterday in Pikesville gasped when Ehrlich told them that Townsend supporters at the debate threw Oreo cookies at his running mate, Michael S. Steele -- a slur symbolizing an African-American considered "white on the inside."

The Telegraph, a UK paper, put their own spin on it; this time, the story went from one cookie striking Steele in the foot, to the future Lt. Gov. being "bombarded" by the delicious chocolate cookies with a savory creme filling.

The tone of the debate has at times spilled over into vicious invective against Mr Ehrlich and his running mate. Mr Steele, a wealthy lawyer, was bombarded with Oreo cookies by activists at one debate - a slur implying that, like the chocolate sandwich biscuits, he is black on the outside and white on the inside.

And here is where it all begins -- immediately after the event, Ehrlich spokesman Paul Schurwick contradicted Steele's recollection of the Oreo-throwing incident.

They booed Ehrlich's wife and parents, he [Paul Schurwick] said, and distributed Oreo cookies in the audience -- a racial insult apparently aimed at GOP lieutenant governor nominee Michael S. Steele, who is black. Schurick also said he thinks they vandalized the cars of several Ehrlich supporters, scratching paint with keys.

For an interesting take on both the Oreo incident -- Ehrlich again repeats the allegation that a horde of cookies, not just one, were thrown at Steele -- and the "key scratching" story, take a look at this Bay Weekly interview with the then-candidate, from the end of October. Ehrlich manages to spin the "key-tale," which was also never independently verified, into an attempt on the life of his child.

EHRLICH: I was not going to speak with the boos and catcalls and Oreo cookies very symbolic being thrown at [running mate] Michael [Steele]. I wasn't going to try to speak over all that.

EHRLICH: By the way, it was not the kids of Morgan. They were thugs who were bused in. They punctured our tires, covered our car with bumper stickers, scratched it up. We have a three-year-old in that car a lot. It could have easily blown out with our three-year-old in that car.

Whether or not these events ever happened as initially reported is impossible to confirm, but I think it is clear the Ehrlich-Steele camp is embellishing them with no challenge whatsoever from the press.

things fall apart would also like to remind everyone that this tale bears a certain similarity to that fantastic yarn about the Clinton staff "vandalizing the White House" prior to the Bush team's arrival; which, of course, turned out to be false.


No One Tropical Storms Like Gaston

things fall apart obviously recognizes that the trail of destruction left by Tropical Storm Gaston is no laughing matter.

However, I'd be kicking myself for weeks if I missed this opportunity (and hey, if not I'm on the fast train to hell already, this sure isn't going hasten to the process.)

Gosh, it disturbs me to see you Gaston,
Looking so down in the dumps.
Ev'ry guy here'd love to be you, Gaston,
even when taking your lumps.
There's no man in town as admired as you,
You're everyone's favorite guy.
Everyone's awed and inspired by you,
and it's not very hard to see why!

No one's slick as Gaston,
no one's quick as Gaston,
no one's neck's as incredibly thick as Gaston's.
For there's no man in town half as manly,
Perfect, a pure paragon!
You can ask any Tom, Dick, or Stanley,
and they'll tell you whose team they prefer to be on.

No one's been like Gaston,
a kingpin like Gaston,
No one's got a swell cleft in his chin like Gaston.

As a specimen, yes, I'm intimidating!

My, what a guy, that Gaston!

Give five "hurrahs!"
Give twelve "hip hips!"
Gaston is the best and the rest is all drips.

No one fights like Gaston,
Douses lights like Gaston,

In a wrestling match nobody bites like Gaston.

For there's no one as burly and brawny.

GASTON As you see I've got biceps to spare.

LEFOU Not a bit of him scraggly or scrawny,

GASTON That's right!
And every last inch of me's covered with hair.

BEERDRINKERS No one hits like Gaston,

OTHER BEERDRINKERS Matches wits like Gaston,

LEFOU In a spitting match nobody spits like Gaston.

GASTON I'm especially good at expectorating!

Ten points for Gaston!

When I was a lad I ate four dozen eggs
every morning to help me get large.
And now that I'm grown I eat five dozen eggs
so I'm roughly the size of a barge!

No one shoots like Gaston,
Makes those beauts like Gaston.

LEFOU Then goes tromping around wearing boots like Gaston.

GASTON I use antlers in all of my decorating!


Who's a man among men

FIRST GROUP And let's say it once more.

SECOND GROUP Who's that hero next door?

Who's a super success?
Don't you know?
Can't you guess?
Ask his fans and his five hangers-on.
There's just one guy in town,
Who's got all of it down!

And his name's



If You Having Blogger Problems I Feel Bad For You Son

You may or may not have had problems accessing yesterday's posts this morning. I did, but it could just be the computers I'm using at school -- though I doubt it, because they're much better than the one I use at home.

Regardless, my ducks seem to be in a row now.


Monday, August 30, 2004

Hate IS A Family Value

Sheri Dew gave the invocation at the Republican National Convention yesterday. This, from Affirmation, describes what she had to say about gay marriage earlier this year.

In one of the most hate-ridden moments of the event, Sheri Dew, President of the LDS-owned Deseret Book, likened those who do not oppose gay marriage to those who did nothing to oppose Hitler's rise to power. Ms. Dew, who is unmarried and has never raised children, also described a picture of a same-sex couple with infants which she saw in Newsweek magazine (see 1 March 2004, pp. 40-41). She said, in disgust, "I just can't stomach this—the thought of those girls being raised in that kind of a setting." Meridian Magazine <http://www.ldsmag.com/ideas/040310defenders.html> later reported her remarks as being that she was "heartsick"—a more genteel version of her actual remarks.

A Google News search of Sheri Dew returns, of course, that no major news organizations have picked up on this yet.


Flip-Flop This

Via Josh Marshall, we have to ask -- does this count as a flip-flop?

"We have a clear vision on how to win the war on terror and bring peace to the world."

Pres. Bush, July 30, 2004

"I don’t think you can win [the war on terror]. But I think you can create conditions so that the — those who use terror as a tool are — less acceptable in parts of the world.”

Pres. Bush, August 29, 2004

And despite the reluctance of major news organizations to do any objective research on the 527 issue, I think it's quite obvious that this counts as a major flip-flop.

From Friday's
Washington Post:

The president said he wanted to work together [with McCain] to pursue court action to shut down all the ads and activity by these shadowy 527 groups," White House press secretary Scott McClellan told reporters on Air Force One after Bush spoke to McCain by telephone from the presidential jet Thursday morning.

Odd; considering that in 2000, when the ads being produced by independent groups worked largely in the President's favor -- especially those attacking his then primary-opponent, John McCain -- Bush had
this to say.

In my state that’s the way it is. People can give any amount they want to give so long as there’s disclosure. That Supreme Court case was [too] liberal an interpretation of the Constitution. I believe in freedom of speech. I understand there’s going to be limits and I’ll live with them. But I believe the best policy is to say individuals can give and then have instant disclosure on the Internet.

So in other words, Bush wants to shut down free speech. Right?


Sunday, August 29, 2004

Coffee Talk

While I recover, talk amongst yourselves.

Your topics:

This article from The Washington Monthly; detailing how, as a young Senator, John Kerry brought down one of the largest, terrorist money-laundering institutions in the world.

And this kick ass Batman Begins article.


Sick Day II

I'm feeling slightly improved. But just slightly. What a way to end the summer.

I should be back at full strength tommorrow. In the meantime, check out this piece from Josh Marshall, Laura Rozen and Paul Glastris, concerning the Israeli spy in the Pentagon. It's what we in the biz call a "must read."