After hearing that McCain was talking on TV about how Obama would be a good President, or something similar, I figure I’ll continue doing things backwards, and lend a compliment to McCain.

Obama caught tremendous controversy after Rev. Wright’s comments were taken out of context and played over and over in the media. He initially stood by Rev. Wright, which was the “right” thing to do in my mind. But in an election where people are already (unjustly) questioning his patriotism, it wasn’t the popular decision. Rev. Wright went on to make more statements, when Obama finally distanced himself from his increasingly offensive remarks.

Rev. John Hagee talked about how Hitler had just fulfilled God’s will, and then endorsed McCain. McCain rejected Hagee’s endorsement, saying, “Obviously, I find these remarks and others deeply offensive and indefensible, and I repudiate them. I did not know of them before Rev. Hagee’s endorsement, and I feel I must reject his endorsement as well.”

Well-done, sir! (Hagee then withdrew his endorsement of McCain.) And at the same time, McCain made sure reporters didn’t take anything out of context, throwing in, “I have said [before that] I do not believe Sen. Obama shares Rev. Wright’s extreme views.”

I hope the rest of the campaign goes this way: more of a friendly campaign. Both candidates have condemned those in their party that go for underhanded tactics. I confess that I’m not too fond of McCain (though I don’t have anything terribly negative to say about him), but this sort of, “Not being a sneaky bastard” philosophy is one of the things that drew me to Obama. That McCain is adopting a similar policy bodes well, I think, for America, regardless of who wins.

(Full disclaimer: it’s being alleged that Rev. Hagee’s words, much like Rev. Wright’s, were taken out of context, and I believe it. But frankly, it’s a moot point: much like with Rev. Wright and Obama, it’s not so much the truth as it is the perception.)

That Wacky State

Can you guess the state?

  • Recently had about 100 students arrested, and several fraternties banned, after a massive drug dealing operation was busted at a state university.
  • Recently became the second state in the nation to give homosexuals equal rights.
  • Recently had 2 arrested at another school for selling body parts on the black market.

Okay, so the link gives it away. But this wasn’t really meant to stump people anyway.


Elections kind of got put on the back-burner during this awkwardly long waiting period, but Pennsylvania’s primary is on Tuesday.

Obama’s closing the gap, although Clinton still leads in Pennsylvania. But what people seem to forget is that it hardly matters: they’re close, which means that they’ll probably walk away with similar numbers of delegates. It’s also worth noting that if Hillary narrowly beats Obama, it would look foolish for her to claim it as her “comeback.”

I’ll certainly be watching Pennsylvania, but I don’t have high hopes for much of a change in Pennsylvania.


The LA Times has an interesting article in which Bill Richardson suggests that he had intended to back Hillary, but between her overzealous TV ads and a bunch of unceasing, rude calls suggesting that he “owed” her the endorsement because he was on Bill Clinton’s cabinet, he decided otherwise. The Clinton camp, of course, has called his loyalty to President Clinton into question, but Richardson was unphased:

“I was loyal,” Richardson said during an extended conversation over breakfast this week at the governor’s mansion in Santa Fe. “But I don’t think that loyalty is transferable to his wife… You don’t transfer loyalty to a dynasty.”

The Clinton camp, though, is still fuming:

Days later, just when interest in the endorsement seemed to wane, former President Clinton exploded in a rant about Richardson at the state Democratic Party convention in San Jose.

She Ate All the Gherkins

The UK’s Mark Steel has a particularly humorous piece on Hillary’s problems with accidentally mis-speaking and making strange claims, because she says so many words:

Her next round of soft-focus adverts will probably feature her soothingly saying, “My fellow Americans, I drank a pint of walrus milk once for a bet. I speak fluent Eskimo. I once ate all the gherkins in Belgium. My brother’s got a yak in his loft. I fell asleep on a night bus once and woke up in Munich, and had to get a lift back on a camel. I used to live on an iceberg. I’ve got a waffle-maker that works underwater.”

Okay, so maybe it’s overly critical of her. But I can’t help but chuckle as I read it.

Flaming Pants

I hadn’t paid much attention at the time, but Hillary spoke the other day about how she was “battle-tested” and ready to lead the country, unlike Obama. (Or so she thinks.)

CBS quotes her as having said:

“I remember landing under sniper fire… There was supposed to be some kind of a greeting ceremony at the airport, but instead we just ran with our heads down to get into the vehicles to get to our base.”

Wow, sounds impressive. The problem? The CBS article continues:

Problem is: that’s not how it happened at all. And we should know: CBS News investigative correspondent Sharyl Attkisson and a CBS News crew accompanied the First Lady on that Bosnia trip.

A photograph shows Clinton talking to Attkisson on the military flight into Tuzla.

And pictures CBS News recorded show the greeting ceremony when the plane landed… [T]here was no sniper fire either when Clinton visited two army outposts, where she posed for photos. And no sniper fire back at the base, where she sang in a USO show starring Sinbad and Sheryl Crowe.

It’s great that she was over visiting troops in Bosnia, don’t get me wrong. It’d just be nice if, you know, she didn’t start wildly embellishing tales. And in an election where every move gets scrutinized, didn’t she realize that her lying would set her up for comments like this one:

Mike Allen of Politico.com said: “Who knows if she misremembered, misspoke, exaggerated, whatever. It makes the case for Sen. Obama that all this experience that she’s been talking about is at least partly in her imagination.”

Also, the comments on CBS News are rapidly plummeting in quality, and may soon surpass Youtube in terms of insanely bad comments…

Enough Already

I used to like Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. They were both well-qualified, I thought, and the country would be in good hands either way. But I worried that Hillary had too many people who were opposed to her for one reason or another, so I thought Obama had a better chance of getting the Democratic nomination. I still supported Hillary, mind you, just not as much.

That all ended several months ago. It seems to me that every time she opens her mouth, she comes across as more and more bitter. She’s polarizing the Democratic party, and embarassing us at the same time. While she’s better than McCain, getting shot in the face is better than burning dying in a fire.

If you’d asked me in February to pick my top two Democratic candidates, I’d have said Obama and Richardson. And I haven’t wavered on that. (Clinton dropped from third place, though, to dead last among the Democrats.) They complement each other perfectly. So I was ecstatic when Richardson just came out in support of Obama.

Of course, the Clintons were not pleased. Which brings up another point of mine: I used to like Bill Clinton. Sure, he could have exercised some better control in personal matters, but if that’s the biggest criticism eight years later, job well done. But now he’s getting nasty and negative. I saw a survey somewhere that showed that his approval rating (yes, they apparently do track approval ratings of past presidents) has gone down since he started campaigning for Hillary. Fail.

But in the linked article, Richardson explains that he doesn’t think he’s “crossed” the Clintons, nor that he owed her his endorsement. But the best part of all is this little bit:

Richardson was asked Sunday about James Carville’s comment that Richardson’s Obama endorsement “came right around the anniversary of the day when Judas sold out for 30 pieces of silver.” Carville is an adviser to Clinton’s presidential campaign and a CNN political analyst.

“Well, I’m not going to get in the gutter like that,” Richardson said. “And you know, that’s typical of many of the people around Sen. Clinton. They think they have a sense of entitlement to the presidency.”

He’s starting to exhibit something that Obama rocks at: people come at him with some sort of low blow, and he manages to say exactly the right thing to deflect the attack and end up making the attacker look like the idiot. (Remember when someone started questioning Obama’s patriotism because he stopped wearing his little flag lapel pin? His response was that he’d noticed that the flags often served as a replacement for “true patriotism.”) And… Did Carville mean to equate Hillary with Jesus in his analogy?

(Also, I have to wonder… How is it not a conflict of interest to be “an adviser to Clinton’s presidential campaign and a CNN political analyst?” Are they familiar with the Republican jibe that CNN stands for “Clinton News Network?”)

In conclusion… Where’s my Obama-Richardson ’08 bumper sticker?

It’s Florida

What is it with Florida and screwing up elections?

Right now there’s a big debate over what to do with their election results, which officially don’t count, and in which no candidates were allowed to campaign. Hillary did anyway, and, unsurprisingly, won.

Of course, counting the votes is unfair–only one candidate campaigned, and she was breaking the rules in doing so. So obviously, it would favor her. But then again, not counting the votes would be equally unfair–you’re disenfranchising a whole state.

Right now, I suspect that, as with Florida and the 2004 general election, 2008’s Democratic primary is going to be very close. And we’re going to end up with a big fight over Florida, the outcome of which will swing the vote one way or the other.

Except I think we’re at a critical juncture. A united Democratic front can take back the White House in 2008. A bitterly-divided Democratic party, feuding over the nomination, is going to lose. And if we get into a “credentials fight” at the DNC, it’s going to be the latter.

So, from the 49 other states–actually, 48, as Florida isn’t the only one with problems: please, figure out how to hold an election!

Yes we can… win Texas

Quoth the votemaster:

Texas finally got the votes counted. The net result is that Obama actually won Texas. Clinton got four delegates more than he did in the primary but he beat her by nine delegates in the caucus. Between Texas, Wyoming, and Mississippi, he now has a bigger lead in delegates than he had before March 4.

As an armchair (business) strategist, I have to say that Hillary’s attempt to claim him as her VP was a clever, if hilariously transparent, attempt to draw attention away from the fact that he is winning no matter how you slice it. Let me be sappy and quote the Yes We Can Song (which itself quotes Obama). It seems quite apropos here:

We know the battle ahead will be long, but always remember that no matter what obstacles stand in our way, nothing can stand in the way of the power of millions of voices calling for change.

We have been told we cannot do this by a chorus of cynics… They will only grow louder and more dissonant.

I Told You…

Texas has problems.

Apparently, in the counties that got around to holding caucuses and primaries, no one was quite sure what they were doing. People waited hours to cast their ballot (wait, you cast ballots in a caucus? How is that diferent from a primary? Why do they hold them on the same day?), which apparently also confused a lot of people by, for some reason, asking them to select their sexual orientation?

The results (of candidates, not Texans’ sexuality) are still coming in….