Archive for the ‘Palin’ Category

h1

Super Obama World

November 7, 2008

Courtesy of a tip from MSNBC, I present you….

superobamaworld

click to play

The setting is Alaska, and you get to play as Obama as he invades Palin’s home turf. The game is kinda addicting, and it’s complete with lipstick-wearing pigs, flag pins, a bridge to nowhere, crazy Nieman Marcus salespeople (?), and some dudes holding bags of cash (special interests guys?*).

*Acutally, if you can guess what those guys are supposed to be, let me know in the comments.

h1

Why The McCain Camp Didn’t Want To “Free Sarah”

November 6, 2008

Hopefully, this will be the very last Chamber post about Sarah Palin….

The election is over, and Obama won, so I acknowledge that the subject matter around here should probably be covering things that involve looking ahead.  But I couldn’t help but be struck by some of the stories that are surfacing today about McCain’s choice of VP.  In short, the narrative goes that Sarah Palin is even more clueless than parodied by Tina Fey.

Before I link to that stuff, however, I’d like to revisit something I read right after Palin’s disastrous interview with Katie Couric:  Kathryn Jean Lopez: Free Sarah Palin! A plea for authenticity in the veepstakes

My guess — based on nothing but hope for a change — is that Sarah Palin just needs some freedom. I don’t know who is holding her back but if John McCain wants to win this thing it had better not be him and his staff. When I watch these interviews, I see a woman who looks like she’s stayed up all night studying and is trying to remember the jurisprudential chronology of privacy vis-a-vis reproduction, the war on terror, and public figures (add 12 more things, described in the most complicated way possible, to the list to be more accurate). She looks like a woman who’s been cramming talking points and great Matt Scully lines and Mark Salter-McCain war stories and Steve Schmidt marching orders into her head since that first plane ride from Alaska. She looks like a woman who has ceased being the confident, successful executive who got herself elected governor of Alaska without the full force of her party behind her and managed to have an approval rating of which most can’t even dream.

Starting with the Gibson interview, it sure did seem like Palin was simply regurgitating talking points that someone had crammed into her head.  Much of the rhetoric didn’t have anything to do with the question that was being asked.  Like Lopez, I thought that she was being “handled” because the McCain camp wanted to be certain that she stuck to the officially approved talking points.  There were some cringe-worthy parts, sure (like the “Bush Doctrine” thing), but I didn’t really think that she was exceedingly ignorant.

As the weeks passed, however, there were certain statements that Palin made that made me think that she just might be breathtakingly clueless.  One of the most notable was something that I didn’t take the time to mention here in the Chamber (opting instead to roam to other blogs that had brought it up), which was the fact that Palin didn’t seem to understand the meaning of “negative campaigning” and, even more concerning, the First Amendment:

 “If [the media] convince enough voters that that is negative campaigning, for me to call Barack Obama out on his associations,” Palin told host Chris Plante, “then I don’t know what the future of our country would be in terms of First Amendment rights and our ability to ask questions without fear of attacks by the mainstream media.”

That’s enough to give someone the ol’ dolor de cabeza. 

And now, with McCain’s succession, the campaign insiders apparently can’t contain their frustration with Palin any longer.  Just get a load of this:

Could it be that Palin was given a list of talking points to cover any and all interview questions simply because the alternative was worse?   Sounds pretty likely, all things considered.  It isn’t hard to imagine the staffers running through trial interviews with her behind the scenes, having a huddle, and coming back to her with a little “Um… yea.  On second thought, just read this.”  If she refused the help, it would make sense that the Couric interview was a hodgepodge of the talking points, cluelessness, and of course, plenty of “also”.

WordPress.com Political Blogger Alliance

Update: For those who like to roam to other blogs discussing the subject, here’s the memeorandum link.

UpdateAs the world turns…The leaks from the anonymous McCain staffers have been flowing for the last few days now, and naturally, pro-McCain blogs like Hot Air are wondering aloud why the heck The Maverick isn’t jumping in to defend his VP pick.

Update (11/12):  Amazing.  Palin still hasn’t looked up the definition of “negative campaigning”:

BLITZER: So looking back, you don’t regret that tough language during the campaign?

PALIN: No, and I do not think that it is off-base nor mean-spirited, nor negative campaigning to call someone out on their associations and on their record. And that’s why I did it.

h1

Enough Of “Joe The Plumber” Already!

October 28, 2008

Ok, I realize that the media was going to glom onto this guy when he came up a bazillion times in the debate, but enough is enough.  It has gotten to the point where “Joe” is not only on the campaign trail with McCain/Palin, but the media is reporting his statements as if he’s a candidate himself.  Just check this out:

‘Joe the Plumber’ Backs Claim That Obama Would Bring ‘Death to Israel’

That’s an actual headline.  On Fox

So, naturally, Shep Smith had to call him up and give the “could you explain that?” interview.

Or how about this:

Joe the Plumber says Obama would make US socialist

That’s an AP headline.

Or this:

Records searches anger Joe the Plumber

The Columbus Dispatch.

Is it just me, or does this “Joe the Plumber” blitz give you the feeling that we’re living in a children’s book?  Are we all six year-olds?  

Apparently, McCain thinks so, as he’s adopted and embraced the Toys ‘R’ Us-esque marketing gimmick and plastered him all over his campaign website as well:

Go here, and you’ll see videos of Brad the Welder, Jeff the Truck Driver, Tara the Teacher, Josie the Transcriptionist, Jeff the Realtor, etc.

{{{sigh}}}

I realize that most of the country doesn’t give a rat’s hinder what my opinion is.  OK, scratch that.  Most of the country doesn’t know who the heck I am.  But I certainly wouldn’t expect Fox or the AP to pick up the Chamber, anyway.  Chen the Salesman hasn’t gotten the attention of David the Campaign Strategist, I guess.

Hey, NO FAIR!!!

And with great hesitation to click “publish”, I dub this the one and only Official Chamber “Joe the Plumber” thread.

WordPress.com Political Blogger Alliance

h1

Watching The Train Wreck

October 13, 2008

I couldn’t help but notice that the number of conservative pundits coming out against -or otherwise expressing dissatisfaction with- the McCain campaign appears to be growing.  There’s frustration out there, that’s for sure, and its on full display and playing out all over the political web.  So, for the purposes of discussion and future reference, I decided to recap what we’ve seen in the last few days/weeks and post a little link depot (in no particular order, out of laziness):

David Brooks: Sarah Palin “Represents A Fatal Cancer To The Republican Party”

David Frum: Palin the irresponsible choice?

Kathleen Parker:  Palin Problem

Christopher Buckley:  Sorry, Dad, I’m Voting for Obama

Christopher Hitchens:  Vote for Obama McCain lacks the character and temperament to be president. And Palin is simply a disgrace. (ouch!)

Heather MacDonald: Gettin’ All Mavericky

Bill Kristol: Fire the Campaign (and later, the Campaign Fights Back!)

With regards to some of the other prominent pundits who refuse to accept all that, I’ve witnessed a few rather strange posts; a decent into the realm of rants and accusations that lie on the frayed ends of sanity.  Here’s one example:

Amdy McCarthy: Did Obama Write “Dreams from My Father” … Or Did Ayers? (a post that resulted in a WTH? exchange from one of his collegues at NRO)

And speaking of NRO and their unusual practice of conversing thru blog posts, there’s even more drama today, and Frum feels compelled to defend himself:

Do my correspondents (and now my Corner colleagues) truly believe that – but for my pitiful media and social ambitions – nobody in America would have noticeed that Sarah Palin cannot speak three coherent consecutive words about finance or economics? 

Double Ouch.

Now, having officially endorsed Obama for president here in the Chamber, one might assume that I’m watching all this with a certain amount of glee.  I’ll admit, there might be some of that, but mostly I feel a little vindicated for some of my recent threads.  After all, contrary to some of the charges made against me in the comments section that I’ve turned the Chamber into a medium of dishonest propaganda, here you have some evidence of similar criticism coming from those who are wearing partisan goggles of a different shade.

I hereby open up the thread, but I may add a few more derailment examples as I stumble upon them.

WordPress.com Political Blogger Alliance

Update: Well, that didn’t take long: Bush Strategist: McCain Knows He Put Country At Risk With Palin Pick

The other panelists were surprised, a bit, by Dowd’s bluntness. Not least because McCain’s well-known campaign motto is “country first.”

“No, I don’t agree,” said Mark McKinnon, a former McCain aide, after chiding Dowd for claiming particular insight into McCain’s soul.

“Well,” responded Dowd, “that’s even more disturbing than my thought” — the implication being that it would be truly frightening if McCain didn’t know how bad Palin truly was.

But maybe this one shouldn’t count (too RINOish).  I report, you decide, I guess.

Update:  Almost forgot about this one: Surprise: Peggy Noonan not sure who she’s voting for

Update: In Philly, Conservative Talk Radio Host Backs Obama

h1

Will Palin Drop Out Of The Race In Light Of Troopergate Fallout?

October 10, 2008

Quick thread, since it just broke and I’m not sure if anyone else has posed the question yet…

Here’s the discussion on memeorandum.

Here’s the 263-page report (pdf).  In short, Branchflower concluded that Palin violated the ethics law by using (abusing) her authority to pressure Monegan to fire Wooten, and not in the act of firing Monegan.  It’s and important distinction that I don’t think alot of the netizens on the web are grasping at this point. 

So, the “what now?” question arises, and the pundits are all over the board on this one.  Impeachment?

WordPress.com Political Blogger Alliance

h1

Sarah Palin & “Also”

October 9, 2008

I sat down for another wonderful night of watching TV before bed, and somewhere in between Anderson Cooper and the hockey game I had a revelation:  Sarah Palin says “also”, like…a lot. 

So, just to make sure I wasn’t crazy, I decided do a quick search to see if I was the only one who’d noticed this.  Well, sure enough, some ambitious netizen with a little too much time on his/her hands put together a little montage:

Ya know Sarah, it’s OK to insert a few “as well”‘s and “too”‘s in there every once and awhile.  Wow.   But, hey, this is just a edit hack-job, right?

Wrong.

Let’s take a look at the transcript from her debate with Biden.  Then, hit CTRL+F, and search for the word. 

{{{drumroll}}}

The “also” count:

Palin: 48

Biden: 3

In fact, it didn’t take long for Palin to kick it in:

PALIN: Thank you, Gwen. And I thank the commission, also. I appreciate this privilege of being able to be here and speak with Americans.

Now there’s your drinking game!  It would have been a veritable flurry of shots.  But on the other hand, everyone would have been passed out 10 min. into the debate…also.

WordPress.com Political Blogger Alliance

h1

Doubling Down On The Ayers Controversy

October 6, 2008

It appears that the big news this week in this crazy 2008 election campaign is the return of Bill Ayers into the national spotlight.  The opening salvo came over the weekend, when Sarah Palin brought it up at a campaign stop in front of a group of supporters, and stated that Obama was “palling around” with terrorists (CNN’s attempt to fact-check the claim is here, and the Obama response here).  Perhaps the decision was made within the camp that, having been beaten in a couple of debates on the actual issues, and seeing themselves slide in the polls, the time has come for a little desperation.  And since everyone else is talking about it, I thought it’d make a good topic for the Chamber.

I’d like to kick this thing off and say that I’m not going to offer up any defense of Ayers here.  All those Weatherman activities took place during a tumultuous time in America (before I was born), so I don’t see myself in a position to offer up much of an informed opinion on the whole thing.  All I know is what I read in places like the blogs, CNN, the NYT, and wiki.  But to the overall notion that Obama’s association with Ayers is relevant to the campaign or his ability to serve as president, I’ll say a few things about what appears to be an attempted smear job…

First, are those associations any more significant than those at the University of Illinois – Chicago?  After all, Ayers is a distinguished professor there, and the university is state-funded.  Would that, by the McCain/Palin logic, disqualify the entire UIC faculty from ever becoming president? I mean, they’re “palling” around with him, right?  Or, how about anyone who has taken one of Ayers’ courses? The entire state of Illinois? Heck, that’s worse. They’re paying him!

And what about the other members of the various boards? Or the guy who does Ayers’ taxes? Or his mailman?

So, what level of association would be deemed damning?  I just don’t see how serving on the same board or whatever for something completely unrelated to Ayers’ past would be very relevant.  Its not like Obama was helping him build bombs, funding the building of bombs, or even anywhere near a bomb being built.  And unlike the Wright controversy, I don’t recall seeing so much as a picture of Obama and Ayers together “palling around” (a picture that they’d be anxious to get their hands on, one would assume).   If all the smear merchants have to work with is headlines like “Ayers Was on Woods Fund Board with Obama When He Stepped on Flag“, I’d say that the attack is pretty weak.   Perhaps the fact that they are even wasting time with it instead of focusing on the myriad of real problems we face in this country will mean that Obama’s lead in the polls will widen further. 

WordPress.com Political Blogger Alliance

h1

Official Chamber Biden-Palin Debate Thread

October 1, 2008

As a follow-up to the previous thread, I figured that I might as well start one for the much-anticipated and only VP debate.  I do this a day early so we can have room to make predictions, a little liveblogging (if anyone’s around), and reactions.

For now, I’m going to start with a few pre-debate thoughts…

First, it’d be irresponsible for the Chamber not to mention the notion that the various statements made by Palin these last few weeks has reduced the expectations of her to the lowest of levels (that’s what the media’s been implying, anyway).   To sum it up, Countdown put together a pretty good montage:

click to watch

click to watch

Could Palin “win” simply by showing up and not saying anything too embarrassing?  On the other hand, based on these interviews, is that even probable?

Second, to gain a little insight, we should highlight those who have debated Palin in the past, and those people are saying that she shouldn’t be underestimated

While policy wonks such as Biden might cringe, it seemed to me that Palin was simply vocalizing her strength without realizing it. During the campaign, Palin’s knowledge on public policy issues never matured – because it didn’t have to. Her ability to fill the debate halls with her presence and her gift of the glittering generality made it possible for her to rely on populism instead of policy.

Palin is a master of the nonanswer. She can turn a 60-second response to a query about her specific solutions to healthcare challenges into a folksy story about how she’s met people on the campaign trail who face healthcare challenges. All without uttering a word about her public-policy solutions to healthcare challenges.

Of course, most politicians rely on the ability to weild the “nonanswer” as a defense mechanism and to avoid being pinned down.  But tomorrow night’s debate will be a completely different set of circumstances.  This one will be on a national stage covering both domestic and international issues, and subjected to the spin and interpretation of the media and pundits across the country.   It remains to be seen she can pull this off outside of the familiar confines of her home turf.  After all, one would think that it’s a lot easier to do it when the issues exclusively deal with the state in which you’ve lived your whole life.  And given the fact that there’s been so much attention paid to the aforementioned cluelessness that she’s already displayed on the national and international issues, the “nonanswer” will now be something that people will be looking for and picking apart (if not outright mocking).

Finally, I’ll just add that Biden’s best approach is to exude confidence and competence and to be careful not to attack Palin in a condescending manner, as in doing so he risks coming across as a bully and turning people off.  In fact, the best advise would be to avoid attacking Palin at all.  The contrast between the two should be evident if he just plays it safe and answers the questions.

And with that, I open up the thread and start popping the popcorn…

WordPress.com Political Blogger Alliance

h1

Did Palin’s Email Hacker Break The Law?

September 18, 2008

I was hoping to see a WPPBA thread on this subject, so I thought I’d just throw it out there for the Alliance…

With all the buzz over this, I’ve seen plenty of claims on blogs out there that what was done here constitutes a federal crime.  What I haven’t seen, however, is exactly which law was broken.  I’ll admit that I’m no lawyer, and I’m still trying to figure this out, so I’m hoping that someone can help me in the comments section here. 

For the time being, I’ll start with what I know.  Via the much linked-to Malkin page, the pertinent part of the hacker’s “confession”:

In the past couple days news had come to light about palin using a yahoo mail account, it was in news stories and such, a thread was started full of newfags trying to do something that would not get this off the ground, for the next 2 hours the acct was locked from password recovery presumably from all this bullshit spamming.

after the password recovery was reenabled, it took seriously 45 mins on wikipedia and google to find the info, Birthday? 15 seconds on wikipedia, zip code? well she had always been from wasilla, and it only has 2 zip codes (thanks online postal service!)

the second was somewhat harder, the question was “where did you meet your spouse?” did some research, and apparently she had eloped with mister palin after college, if youll look on some of the screenshits that I took and other fellow anon have so graciously put on photobucket you will see the google search for “palin eloped” or some such in one of the tabs.

I found out later though more research that they met at high school, so I did variations of that, high, high school, eventually hit on “Wasilla high” I promptly changed the password to popcorn and took a cold shower…

So, the hacker was basically able to exploit Yahoo!’s password recovery system, reset it, and gain access to the account (quite easily, it would seem).  In other words, this person used the tools that Yahoo! itself provides visitors to its site, as opposed to something akin to a script kiddie “hack”.  (Nevermind what this says about Palin and/or Yahoo!’s ability to protect a password, I’m still trying to make sense of what law was broken. )

Remember that Yahoo! is basically a free email service, so to me, it would be unclear if anything that transpires on their servers is “owned” by Palin or anyone else who uses it.  I would think that you’d be at the mercy of Yahoo! and whatever their terms of service are.  So, speaking of that (emphasis mine):

5. MEMBER ACCOUNT, PASSWORD AND SECURITY

You will receive a password and account designation upon completing the Service’s registration process. You are responsible for maintaining the confidentiality of the password and account and are fully responsible for all activities that occur under your password or account. You agree to (a) immediately notify Yahoo! of any unauthorized use of your password or account or any other breach of security, and (b) ensure that you exit from your account at the end of each session. Yahoo! cannot and will not be liable for any loss or damage arising from your failure to comply with this Section 5.

I don’t know about you, but what I’m reading there is that the responsibility for Sarah Palin’s password winding up on some 4chan message board falls on….Sarah Palin.  In fact, as you read the terms of service, one gets the impression that any given user can expect very little guarantee of, well, anything.  Heck, they can just shut your account down if they feel like it (see section 15).

So, I open up the thread to enlighten myself.  Was the offence related to posting the new password online?  Just accessing the account? 

Have at me, and I’ll update when I see the light.

 

WordPress.com Political Blogger Alliance

Update: I was wrong about the WPPBA not having a thread up. DandelionSalad has one (that’s getting a lot of hits, actually), with more background on what happened.

Update:  Another WPPBA member posts, this one hoping the culprit goes to jail.  Still waiting for the charge…

Update:  Another reason I ask, is because there are “lock door/throw away key” comments being posted on other blogs, or discussions about whether Palin should show mercy and drop the charges.  But no one seems to be stopping to ask if there is a there there to begin with. (of course, going public with showing mercy in light of having nothing to charge the kid (?) with might just be a great political cover for the aforementioned section 5 oopsy).

Update:  I thought I’d add that Gawker (the site that posted screenshots of the emails in question), feels good about their legal situation. Here is the rundown on their coverage.

Update:  Thanks to commenter Mike who finds a post over at the Volokh Conspiracy, and OrinKerr states:

UPDATE: The FBI and Secret Service are conducting a joint investigation. The easiest crime to prove here is 18 U.S.C. 1030(a)(2)(C), accessing a protected computer without authorization to obtain information, with the possibility of felony liability under 18 U.S.C. 1030(c)(2)(B)(ii)-(iii) and also the possibility of felony liability under 18 U.S.C. 1030(a)(4). As with most computer crime cases, the real trick will be finding the bad guy rather than finding a charge.

For the record: § 1030. Fraud and related activity in connection with computers

I dunno.  I think the “trick” would be equating what happened and “accessing a computer without authorization”.   Again, what this person essentially did was gain access to web pages (as opposed to a computer) using the tools that Yahoo! provides.  No trojan horses, no spyware, no keystroke logger.  It will be interesting to see how this plays out, but I’m not seeing anything sticking at this point.  But again, I’m not a lawyer and am unaware of precedents here.

Update: The most comprehensive breakdown I’ve seen thus far of the legalities involved at Threat Level: Little or No Jail Time Likely for Palin Hacker 

The law really does appear to be ambiguous on this one.  But to prove how little I know, I had no idea that there was such a thing as the Stored Communications Act.

Update:  There’s been an indictment, and they’re charging him in violation of 18 U.S.C. Section 2701 and 1030(a)(2) (as Volokh predicted).

Update:  There’s and excellent discussion going on over at Volokh, and the title says it all:  Is the Palin E-Mail Hack Indictment Legally Flawed?

h1

Safe Prediction For Hannity’s Palin Interview

September 13, 2008

Well, the much-discussed interview Sarah Palin had with ABC’s Charles Gibson is over, and the word around the campfire is that she was treated unfairly.  Luckily for her, the next scheduled sit-down will be with my pal Sean Hannity.  Why luckily?  Well, let’s just say that I can sum up the interview with two images:

Exit thought:  I’m getting a kick out of all the pundits rushing in to defend Palin’s “Bush Doctrine” response during Gibson pt. 1.   In general, the spin is something along the lines of “even the experts can’t agree on what it is!” .  Well, that may be true.  But while we may debate on what the “Bush Doctrine” is, there should be universal agreement that “his worldview” it is …not.  It’s her initial response that the defenders conveniently leave out.

WordPress.com Political Blogger Alliance

Update: Jay over at Newshoggers offers up some potential questions that Hannity might “toss” at Palin.

Last Update:  Olbermann broke the Hannity interview down last night, and even used the word “softball”:

Reform!

h1

I Hate To Say This, But I Agree With Karl Rove

September 11, 2008

As an Obama supporter, I know it might seem a little unexpected for me to toss some praise in turd blossom’s direction, but what can I say?  Via memeorandum, I spotted this Rove op-ed in the WSJ: Obama Can’t Win
Against Palin

Money quote/bottom line:

It’s a matchup he’ll lose. If Mr. Obama wants to win, he needs to remember he’s running against John McCain for president, not Mrs. Palin for vice president.

To make his point, Rove proceeded to outline examples of failed presidential bids that featured this sort of disconnect.  He didn’t outline any bids that were successful with this kind of thing playing out (assuming there have been some), but I think he’s reading the current dynamic pretty accurately. 

My take?

Obama risks taking a step backwards with every comment that he makes about her, and this risk, for the most part, outweighs any reward.  As we’ve seen from the ridiculous “lipstick on a pig” faux controversy (that wasn’t even directed at Palin, but it’s one heck of a hint), there are going to be those who will be eager to mislead, spin and misconstrue any comment (no matter how poignant) and turn it into sexism or some sort of gaffe (as I predicted), and scream it loudly.  If that narrative gains traction, it’d be a hole that’d be tough to get out of, and a huge distraction from the message of the campaign.  Rove convincingly paints a trip down this path as a no-win scenario, but to expand on his point, Obama really shouldn’t have to go there anyway.  Presidential candidate vs. running mate doesn’t sound like the intuitive way it should work, and engaging in it in a manner that is in any way aggressive creates the impression that one is intimidated.   That isn’t exactly a way to dictate the tempo.

At first, I was going to suggest that Obama limit specific criticisms of Palin to those that can be confidently and clearly framed into the debate on what the selection itself says about McCain, but now I’m not so sure.  At this point, I’m beginning to think that the best way to counter whatever swell of support McCain has gained with Palin is probably to ignore her.   More specifically, Obama should craft the remainder of the campaign as if the rule of thumb was to pretend that she hasn’t been selected yet (as strange as it sounds on the surface).  Focus on McCain, and marginalize her my not giving her the dignity of a response to whatever she might throw.   Obama should ignore the bait, take the high road for the home stretch and count on Palin doing herself in as the interviews and debates move forward.

WordPress.com Political Blogger Alliance

h1

It’s Called An “Idiom”, Dimwits

September 9, 2008

Ah…It was a typical day.  I got home from work, turned on my laptop, checked my email and the Chamber control center, then decided to see what was new in the world of politics.  And what did I see at the top of the memeorandum page?  This: Obama Says McCain Is Offering Fake Change: ‘You Can Put Lipstick on a Pig, But It’s Still a Pig’

LEBANON, Va. — “That’s not change,” Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., said of what Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., is offering.

“You know, you can put lipstick on a pig,” Obama said, “but it’s still a pig.”

The crowd rose and applauded, some of them no doubt thinking he may have been alluding to Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin’s ad lib during her vice presidential nomination acceptance speech last week, “What’s the difference between a hockey mom and a pit bull? Lipstick.”

Then I see that Drudge once again seizes opportunity to mislead, and puts it front and center:

A few more clicks, and I discover various bloggers hysterically rushing in to attack Obama for calling Palin a “pig”.

Still more clicks, and I notice that the McCain camp calls for Obama to apologize to Palin:

Reporters were a bit skeptical that Obama intended to do that; from the sketchy reports we have, he seemed to be talking about how John McCain can claim to represent change but isn’t really an agent of change.  But Swift said, “it’s pretty clear the crowd thought that that was the insult he was leveling.”  And Swift made the (hopefully) undeniable observation that Palin is the only one of the four national candidates who wears lipstick.

{{{sigh}}}

Where to begin?  Well, this transparent attempt to make something (sexist) out of nothing appears to have gone viral throughout the political web, and I’d just like to point out a few things (just in case it will do any good)…

First, “lipstick on a pig” is what those of us who don’t consider English to be second language call an idiom, and it’s a fairly common one

If people put lipstick on a pig, they make superficial or cosmetic changes, hoping that it will make the product more attractive.

Second, the crowd was probably applauding because said idiom was fitting in the obvious context that the “pig” was the Republican’s actual record, policies and stance on the issues, and the “lipstick” represented their facade of “change”.  

Third,  I should mention that the same site that assumed that Obama’s crowd was applauding because he was “no doubt” referring to Palin and her ad lib, later pointed out that…wait for it…McCain has used the exact same figure of speech when referring to Clinton’s health care plan.

McCain surely wasn’t calling Clinton a pig.

{{{slaps forehead}}}

Dear readers, have any of you seen the movie Idiocracy?    ‘Cause that’s America, right now.  Yep, we’ve officially traveled through time or to some alternate universe where the average IQ has dropped to 60 (yes, I know that the average IQ for any time or alternate universe is always 100 by definition, deal with it).

BTW-  Kudos to Allahpundit and Rusty for being intellectually honest and remaining in our time and universe.

WordPress.com Political Blogger Alliance

Update: I read at one of the blogs that the idiom was also the title of a book, so I Googled, and sure enough:

And just to prove how utterly ridiculous the McCain camp’s outrage really is, consider this exhibit, um…F: Meghan McCain: My Dad Says ‘Lipstick on a Pig’ 

h1

“Shrill”?

September 3, 2008

Uh Oh…

After the Palin acceptance speech this evening, Reid spokesman Jim Manley categorized her speech as “shrill and sarcastic political attacks“.

First, for the record:

shrill 

adjective
1. high-pitched and piercing in sound quality: a shrill cry.
2. producing such a sound.
3. full of or characterized by such a sound: shrill music.
4. betraying some strong emotion or attitude in an exaggerated amount, as antagonism or defensiveness.
5. marked by great intensity; keen: the shrill, incandescent light of the exploding bomb.

Second, I would guess that Reid felt obligated to respond, since he was called out personally in the speech:

Harry Reid, the majority of the current do-nothing Senate … he not long ago summed up his feelings about our nominee. He said, quote, “I can’t stand John McCain.”

Ladies and gentlemen, perhaps no accolade we hear this week is better proof that we’ve chosen the right man.

Clearly, what the majority leader was driving at is that he can’t stand up to John McCain and that is only…

… that’s only one more reason to take the maverick out of the Senate, put him in the White House.

The consensus among the CNN pundits was sort of a “they better be careful with that”, implying that it can be spun as a sexist remark.   But having watched the speech live, I decided that Sarah Palin does sound a little like the Church Lady.  “Shrill” might not have been the word I would have chosen, but hey, judge for yourself:

WordPress.com Political Blogger Alliance

Exit question: Could the “shrill” charge come from a more ironic source than from someone named “Manley”?

h1

Gimme A Break, Banned Again?

September 1, 2008

I know I can push bloggers’ buttons sometimes, and on a couple of occasions it has gotten me banished by the more sensitive types.  This one, however, is just plain ridiculous. 

Yesterday, like many bloggers, I was trying to get a handle on the rumor flying around that Bristol Palin was the mother of Trig, and somewhere along the lines I stumbled upon this post at the Wake Up America blog: Risks Of Reporting Rumor As News About Sarah Palin’s Baby Trig and Daughter Bristol

Long story made short, I noticed that the author (Susan) had posted pics of Sarah Palin that appeared to show her in later stages of pregnancy (as an attempt to debunk the rumor), so I figured that I’d chime in, announce that I was going to play devil’s advocate, and link to this:

You know, hey, someone outta mention it as a possibility, right?  Heck, even Ann Althouse mentioned it, and she had been putting more effort into debunking this rumor than just about anyone.  But it would appear that I had struck a nerve:

I highlight the “Edited By Siteowner” because, if you scroll through the comments section of the thread, you’ll notice that I wasn’t the only netizen who had a comment disappear.  In fact, when I came back to the thread later this evening, I counted at least a dozen of them that had been censored.   As to what the offensive material was, I guess I’ll never know, but judging by my standard, it could probably be assumed that it would have been any dissent (even that which was prefaced by the disclaimer “playing devil’s advocate”).  So, I scratched my head, thought for a second, and posted this:

Wow, my comment got deleted as well?

I’ve got to wonder, with half of the comments here going down the memory hole, why did you even bother with this thread? As you mention in the title, you “risk” participating in the nonsense just by posting it, but we’re to walk on eggshells simply discussing it here in the comments section? I’m confused.

The response to that comment didn’t take to long.   Or, I should say, the deletion of it didn’t take too long, followed by the, well…this:

Pretty weak, eh?  Especially when you consider the comments disclaimer over there:

Note from Wake Up America management: This section is for comments from Wake Up America Readers. Debate and disagreement are welcome, but Bush Bashing will be deleted. We can have discussion in a civilized manner and just because you cannot bash does not mean you cannot discuss and disagree or criticize. Anyone that does not know how to separate those things, shouldn’t be speaking anyway. STICK TO THE ISSUE OF THE POST you are commenting on. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our rules of commenting will lose their posting privilege.

I think it would go without saying…what a crock.  But oh well.  It’s Susan’s blog.  She can do whatever she wants to, just like this is the Chamber, and I can do whatever I want to.  So, I think I’ll just post this: