Presidential scholars say she appears to be the least experienced, least credentialed person to join a major-party ticket in ticket in the modern era. […]That includes Spiro T. Agnew, Richard Nixon's first vice president, who was governor of a medium-sized state, Maryland, for two years, and before that, executive of suburban Baltimore County….It also includes…New York Rep. Geraldine Ferraro, who served three terms in the House before Walter Mondale chose her in 1984 as the first woman candidate on a major party ticket."It would be one thing is she has only been governor for a year and a half, but prior to that she had not had major experience in public life, said [presidential historian Matthew] Dallek of Palin. "The fact that he [McCain] would have to go to somebody who is clearly unqualified to be president makes Obama look like an elder statesman."
Saturday, August 30, 2008
Here are some snippets from Alaska Republican leaders:
State Senate President Lyda Green said she thought it was a joke when someone called her at 6 a.m. to give her the news.
“She’s not prepared to be governor. How can she be prepared to be vice president or president?” said Green, a Republican from Palin’s hometown of Wasilla. “Look at what she’s done to this state. What would she do to the nation?” […]
State House Speaker John Harris, a Republican from Valdez, was astonished at the news. He didn’t want to get into the issue of her qualifications.
“She’s old enough,” Harris said. “She’s a U.S. citizen.”
Writing on National Review Online, conservative pundit and writer David Frum has laid out the Right's doubts about Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, John McCain's choice for vice president.
Maybe this gamble will work, Frum notes, but maybe not:
[M]aybe (and at least as likely) it will reinforce a theme that I'd be pounding home if I were the Obama campaign: that it's John McCain for all his white hair who represents the risky choice, while it is Barack Obama who offers cautious, steady, predictable governance.
Here's I fear the worst harm that may be done by this selection. The McCain campaign's slogan is "country first." It's a good slogan, and it aptly describes John McCain, one of the most self-sacrificing, gallant, and honorable men ever to seek the presidency.
But question: If it were your decision, and you were putting your country first, would you put an untested small-town mayor a heartbeat away from the presidency?
Friday, August 29, 2008
"What is it exactly that the vice president does all day?" Palin offhandedly asked CNBC anchor Larry Kudlow in July.Oops!
The issue at stake is the infamous Bridge to Nowhere, a hugely expensive pork barrel project pushed by Alaska's famously greedy Sen. Ted Stevens. Gov. Palin said today she was against the project.
Too bad they keep records up there in Anchorage, where the daily newspaper has a nice quote from Ms. Palin saying exactly the opposite. Indeed, she is on record in favor of Alaska's infrastructure projects, including the Bridge to Nowhere.
So much for Republican consistency.
On the face of this, McCain has failed the ultimate test than any presidential candidate must face in picking a running mate: selecting someone who is unambiguously qualified to be President.Palin is a talented politician who has both support among conservatives and a compelling personal story. But her short resume in Alaska and her nonexistent national track record will make it impossible for McCain to argue with a straight face that she was the most qualified person he could have selected.
"No one knows anything about her," complained one GOP strategist, who spoke on condition that he not be identified. "I don't know anyone who has even met her.""I don't know much about her, Texas Sen. Kay Baily Hutchinson told CNN this morning. I don't know Sarah Palin."
For a man who is 72 years old and has had four bouts with cancer to have chosen someone so completely unqualified to become president is shockingly irresponsible. Suddenly, McCain's age and health become central issues in the campaign, as does his judgment.
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
This is rich. Cheney, who was of military age during the Vietnam years, never served a day in uniform. Instead, he got five (count 'em: five!) deferments from the draft. Cheney had, in his own words, "other priorities."
Yet Cheney had no problem sending other people's children off to a war that never had to be fought. Cheney had no problem lying about weapons of mass destruction, weapons that a more thoughtful and skeptical person would have questioned.
Turns out, Cheney was wrong. The Democrats (and a few brave Republicans) who challenged the administration were right. In short, Cheney is a classic hypocrite, a two-faced politician who says one thing and does another.
The American Legion is made up of veterans, of course, veterans who served their nation honorably. The irony here is clear: Cheney is not one of them.
Cheney's appearance before the American Legion is nothing less than a disgrace.
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
John McCain says he's a maverick. But he's voted with Bush over 90% of the time. That's not a maverick. That's a sidekick!
Saturday, August 23, 2008
A new report on the documents from George Washington University's National Security Archive…presents compelling evidence that the Bush Administration pressured the CIA and other intelligence agencies to tailor their reports to back-up Bush's desire to invade. The report suggests the bulk of this effort was run our of Vice President Dick Cheney's office, backing up numerous other post-war examinations of the path to invasion that saw Cheney as the mastermind of the plan to oust Saddam Hussein.
Friday, August 22, 2008
Here's a new report from Politico:
The McCains increased their budget for household employees from $184,000 in 2006 to $273,000 in 2007, according to John McCain's tax returns.Spending more than a quarter million on servants in a single year raises this question: Does John McCain understand the lives of Joe and Lucy Sixpack right here in T-Town?
The additional cash supports an "increase in the number of employees," the McCain aide told Politico. The aide did not answer a question about whether the growing staff stemmed from addition of new properties to the family's real estate portfolio.
Based on his deluxe lifestyle, we rather doubt it.
Here's Coffee's comment, his tongue firmly lodged in his fat cheek:
Speaking on behalf of all Oklahoma Republicans, and in the spirit of true bi-partisanship, I want to join Governor Henry in inviting Barack Obama to Oklahoma.Coffee's point (and we're sure he had one) was to belittle Obama, who has weak support in Oklahoma.
But let's suppose Obama did make a visit to Oklahoma and let's say that visit swayed a few independents and fence-sitters to vote for Obama and other Democrats. Would that move Oklahoma in the Obama column? Not likely.
But it might have unintended consequences—it might give a boost to, say, State Sen. Andrew Rice, who's mounting a strong challenge to the official Sooner State dinosaur and Dick Cheney's very dear friend, the weary Jim Inhofe.
So, yes, let's bring Obama to Oklahoma. If that pushes a few more voters into the Democratic column, Coffee will be eating a lot of crow.
Official Net Worth: McCain $36.4 Million, Obama $799,000
More than 60 present and former telecom lobbyists work for McCain's campaign as staffers and volunteers, some in high-echelon posts while on leave from their firms.
Thursday, August 21, 2008
As evidence, we present the latest report on the Bush signing statements, highly questionable documents misused by the White House:
The Bush Administration’s use of presidential signing statements to indicate disapproval of enacted legislation has generated confusion and has undermined congressional oversight of national defense policy, the House Armed Services Committee said in a report this week.Since they arrived in 2001, the Bush-Cheney team has repeatedly usurped Congressional power and thumbed its nose at the people. Despite their highly optimistic predictions, history will not be kind.
78 percent of President Bush’s more than 150 signing statements have raised constitutional or legal objections compared with only 18% of all of President Clinton’s.
Sen. John McCain said in an interview Wednesday that he was uncertain how many houses he and his wife, Cindy, own."I think—I'll have my staff get to you," McCain said. "It's condominiums where—I'll have them get to you."
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
This strikes us a great news for Rice, a first-time candidate in a state-wide race.
Yet Oklahoma remains one of the reddest of the Red States and Inhofe, despite his ties to an unpopular president, is favored in November.
But Inhofe is not invincible. He looks and sounds tired. He was wrong about the war in Iraq. He has nothing new to say about health care, troop support or energy policy. His policies are the same old GOP talking points as he trots out every election, heavy on tough talk and little else.
But there's less to Inhofe than meets the eye. Inhofe is increasingly ineffective as a Oklahoma politican, something more and more Oklahoma voters are figuring out. It's time for Inhofe to go.
With a few more supporters and some additional money, Rice may be the guy to give Inhofe the kick in the butt he needs.
For more on Rice, check out his website at andrewforoklahoma.com.
Friday, August 15, 2008
Eight Republican Senators are skipping the Twin Cities convention, and two more say they might have better things to do Sept. 1-4. It's a troubling sign for a party that already expects to lose more seats in Congress this year and indicates that John McCain continues to be saddled by the baggage of President Bush's last eight years, says one observer.
Thursday, August 14, 2008
Tulsa photography buffs will be treated to the work of a modern master with the opening of the Ansel Adams show at the Gilcrease Museum.
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
Despite the lofty rhetoric, the last seven-plus years have demonstrated that Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rice, Ashcroft, Gonzales and a host of other Bush loyalists and hangers-on have not been held responsible for their actions, at least not officially. Bush has sacked some of them, to be sure, but legal, ethical and/or moral violations and abuses have been elided or ignored wherever possible.
Today's New York Times story makes the case once again:
WASHINGTON — Attorney General Michael Mukasey on Tuesday rejected the idea of criminally prosecuting former Justice Department employees who improperly used political litmus tests in hiring decisions, saying he had already taken strong internal steps in response to a “painful” episode.
So much for the Bush team's accountability. They forgot about it years ago. If we're lucky, maybe the Republicans will pay for their sins in 2008.
Here's a news brief confirming the switch, courtesy of (yes!) FoxNews.com:
Barack Obama’s campaign is rolling out a number of centrist Republicans who are endorsing the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee over Republican rival John McCain - in a show of his ability to win cross-over votes.
But moral posturing and exaggeration will only carry a political party so far.
In the real world, Republicans like Vice President Dick Cheney are as duplicitous as most other politicians, always willing to compromise principle when it's politically expedient.
Here's the latest chapter in the continuing saga of Republican hypocrisy, fresh from San Diego:
Cheney to attend fundraiser for congressman caught with prostitute
Channel 10 News in San Diego reports that Vice President Dick Cheney attend a fundraiser for Rep. Ken Calvert (R-CA) tomorrow and “will also deliver an address at a reception for Rep. Calvert at a private residence in San Clemente.”
In 1993, Calvert was caught by police with a prostitute in a parked car in California and tried to drive away from the scene. “We’re just talking, that’s all,” he told police as he “continued to cover his unzipped pants with his hand,” according to a police report.
Sunday, August 10, 2008
You'd be wrong.
The new Sooner Poll, reported in today's Tulsa World, found a mere 4 percent of Oklahomans who said the economy was improving. The vast majority, more than 80 percent, said the economy is getting worse. The poll included 750 likely voters in Oklahoma.
Given this enormous gap, even Oklahoma voters may be having second thoughts about the economic policies of John McCain. As the Democrats have noted, McCain's economic policies closely resemble those of George W. Bush.
Given the current situation, voters ought be steering clear of another four years of Bush-O-Nomics.
Nation To Try Its Luck Out West
Entire Population Seeking Greener Pastures
The headline says a lot about the tone of the piece: "Booming With Oil and a New Exuberance."
OKC? Really? Who woulda thunk it?
The article goes on to praise the city's Museum of Art and its collection of Dale Chihuly glass, as well as such mainstays as the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum and the Oklahoma City Memorial.
Obviously, such publicity in a national publication is good for OKC and the Sooner state. Let's just hope the national media sticks to reviews of Bricktown and such. If they start writing about Oklahoma politics and politicians, the news will be, well, embarrassing. (Remember Rep. Sally Kern?)
Saturday, August 9, 2008
Then we saw this story in yesterday's New York Times:
The Federal Bureau of Investigation said Friday that it had improperly obtained the phone records of reporters for The New York Times and The Washington Post in the newspapers’ Indonesia bureaus in 2004.All righty, then: The FBI, those men and women who are supposed to be enforcing the law, are once again bending—if not breaking—the law instead.
As we said, we hate to be paranoid. But isn't there a pattern here?
Local Idiot To Post Comment On Internet
Thursday, August 7, 2008
Now that the McCain camp has criticized Barack Obama as a mere celebrity just like Paris Hilton, it comes out that McCain is the one courting celebrity status.
And let's not even get started on his much-younger trophy wife who is one of the richest people in Arizona, who has a pilot license and owns a jet.
Wednesday, August 6, 2008
Apparently, a lot of these Bush supporters live in Oklahoma, since recent polling in the Sooner state shows Republican John McCain with a sizable lead over Democrat Barack Obama.
Given the Bush record, won't be surprised if the Republican advantage shrinks between now and November.
Tuesday, August 5, 2008
If circumstances permit, we'll do a few posts. If not, please check back next week. Until then, stay cool and pray for rain. Our yard in midtown Tulsa is quickly turning to dust.
Sunday, August 3, 2008
Fear and anxiety were exploited by zealots and fools.
--Phillip Zelikow, director of the 9/11 Commission
Friday, August 1, 2008
Republican presidential candidate John McCain promised to run a positive campaign. This week, however, McCain ran a stupid and widely ridiculed attack ad against Barack Obama.
But at the Chicago Sun-Times, Rovian tactics look like a bad bet for McCain. Here's a portion of the Sun-Times analysis:
WASHINGTON -- John McCain's stepped-up aggression raises the question: Will Americans vote for a scold?
A new ad launched Wednesday suggests Democratic rival Barack Obama is nothing more than a lightweight celebrity akin to a Britney Spears or a Paris Hilton. McCain has suggested Obama would rather lose a war than an election and ridicules him for the ''audacity of hopelessness'' in his Iraq policies.
''He's the biggest celebrity in the world,'' his latest ad says. ''But, is he ready to lead?''
Some Republicans welcomed McCain's confrontational strategy. New Hampshire GOP Chairman Fergus Cullen said Republicans in his state ''like to see the McCain campaign on offense.''
But in striking an aggressive pose, McCain is in danger of of letting the caricature of an angry, petulant candidate take seed, and angry candidates don't win elections.