Saturday, September 11, 2004

Can anyone say Glenn Close?

Dawnette Knight was linked to calls on May 18 and 19 during which a hotel receptionist was warned: "We know she is in the hotel. We are going to kill her. She does not (expletive) around with Michael Douglas," according to Friday's testimony.

Yes, we wouldn't want to inflame the peaceful Arab street.

The Constitution: Actually a forgery?

Iraqi TV seems to be going out of its way to make American TV look dignified:

"An upcoming drama series on al-Sharqiya called 'The Looters' will feature families who grew rich off the spoils of ransacking after the U.S.-led war last year. Another show, called 'Iraq's Most Melancholy Home Videos,' will capture the reactions of Iraqis watching footage of former neighbors now living abroad."

Jay Parmley, chairman of the Oklahoma Democratic Party, really puts the screws to GOP senatorial candidate Tom Coburn:

"He should apologize today," Parmley said. "Not next week, not through a staffer. Tom Coburn himself needs to stand up and say, 'I apologize. I didn't mean to call the people of Oklahoma City "crapheads."'"
I guess it's only fair.

Howard Dean makes a point that I wish I didn't buy into as completely as I do:

"'The Republicans have the best propaganda out there since Lenin, and they just make stuff up and they keep repeating it, and hope people are going to believe it,' he told The Associated Press."
They really do seem to have a frighteningly-good mechanism for creating "facts" out of whole cloth, and then pounding their detractors in a variety of derogatory ways ("liberal," "unpatriotic," etc.). It's pretty spiffy, really. I don't mean to suggest, of course, that the Democrats don't do the same thing. Just that the Republicans are a lot better at it.

I don't know whether these memos are real or not, but if they are, the author sure has an odd style. "Says that he is working on another campaign for his dad"? Please.

I've become convinced that Zell Miller is a Republican sleeper agent installed in the Democratic party at some point during the Cold War (by Henry Kissinger, I'd imagine). If you're with me, drop him an email.

A neat applet that calculates the cost of the war in Iraq.

Friday, September 10, 2004

Kerry, in a misguided attempt to connect with the voters, uses the phrase "heavens to Betsy." Within hours, InstaPoll results nationwide show his likeability rating dropping by as much as 65 points.

Thursday, September 09, 2004

Tom DeLay, in the midst of ridiculing Kerry, alienates his entire staff (not to mention most of the Washington press corps):

"In a reference to one of the Clinton campaign's favorite sayings, he went on: 'Instead of, "It's the economy, stupid," we have, "When the going gets tough, blame the help," and that attitude has no place in public. I mean, if I blamed these knuckleheads' - and here, the majority leader gestured toward his own aides, arrayed nearby - 'behind me for every bump in the road around here, then I couldn't blame you guys.'"

Poll workers in Minnesota are told to be on the lookout for... well, hippies:

"Minnesota election workers have been briefed on potential signs of terrorist activity at polling places, including people with shaved heads or short hair and unusual herbal or flower smells."

Is Ken Jennings done? Internet rumors abound.

Teresa Heinz Kerry continues to prove her kind manner.

Teresa Heinz Kerry says "only an idiot" would fail to support her husband's health care plan.

But Heinz Kerry, the wife of Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry, told the (Lancaster) Intelligencer Journal that "of course, there are idiots."

Point of interest:

I've been wondering about this, so I put it together, just for interest's sake. At this point in the 2000 election...

September 8, 200042.7546.00
October 3, 200041.5046.00
October 24, 200045.2544.50
Actual election results47.8748.38

(Sources: Old polls are scarce, so I just dug up four for each one of the dates above. The polls cited were: ABC/WP, CBS/NYT, CNN/Gallup, FOX, Newsweek, and Zogby.)

Take that, Swifties!

Kerry must be feeling the "tough-guy" heat:

Asked about a constitutional amendment to ban flag burning, Kerry told the magazine: "If I saw somebody burning a flag, personally, I'd probably punch them out and stomp on them."
Whatever you say, Mr. Tyson.

This is pretty amusing: the top story on Keith Olbermann's The Countdown the other night was this. Which, as it turns out, is not actually news.

Mark Mellman explains the shortcomings of likely-voter models.

At long last, Kerry admits to the flip-flopitude (at least when it comes to food):

"Everybody told me, 'God, if you're coming to Canonsburg, you've got to find time to go to Toy's, and he'll take care of you,' Mr. Kerry said, dropping the name of a restaurant his motorcade had passed on the way in. 'I understand it's my kind of place, because you don't have to - you know, when they give you the menu, I'm always struggling: Ah, what do you want?

'He just gives you what he's got, right?' Mr. Kerry added, continuing steadily off a gangplank of his own making: 'And you don't have to worry, it's whatever he's cooked up that day. And I think that's the way it ought to work, for confused people like me who can't make up our minds.'"

Shades of Happy Gilmore at a Kerry rally in Cincinnati.

Followup: The Hapy Gilmorianess doesn't seem to be limited to Kerry rallies.

Bush, filling in at an emergency supply distribution center, loads a man's truck with bottled water, and thanks him for "coming by." The sentiment is admirable, surely, but couldn't someone have mentioned to Bush that these people didn't come to see him?

Wednesday, September 08, 2004

Russia gets on board, with what I view as a tremendous boost for the global war on terror.

Keyes gets the vote from Christ.

Joe Klein makes a great point that I completely missed in the less-than-logically-organized critique of the Swifties that I wrote about a week ago:

These are heartfelt gripes, perhaps, but wrong on the merits. Kerry's protest was not only honorable, it was accurate. The war in Vietnam was an unnecessary disaster, entered into under false pretenses—the fabricated Gulf of Tonkin incident—and fought because of a mistaken intellectual theory: that the Vietnamese national liberation movement was part of an international communist conspiracy to overwhelm Asia.

Tuesday, September 07, 2004

Eric Zorn of the Chicago Tribune argues that Alan Keyes wouldn't make it in Washington because he "shows no aptitude for verbal finesse, media management, coalition building and other skills he'd need." No word on whether or not he appreciates the irony.

13% of Gallup's most recent respondents feel that President Bush is too liberal. Too liberal!

Christ in heaven.

Kerry discovers a new slogan:

"Sen. John F. Kerry, under pressure from Democratic leaders to draw sharper contrasts between himself and George W. Bush, launched a series of blistering attacks on the president Monday, saying the W in his opponent's name stands for 'wrong... wrong choices, wrong priorities, wrong direction for our country.'"

Jimmy Carter admits that he "probably" owes his presidency to Robert Redford. Across the country, conservatives knowingly nod their heads.

Lee Kalcheim op-eds in the NYT about "The Latest Poll," which includes these facts and figures:

  • 60 percent of households that fly flags think America can do no wrong 26 percent of the time.
  • 98 percent of people who are hearing-impaired like 50 percent of what they hear from Mr. Bush.
  • 63 percent of single women over 50 think John Kerry is too tall for his own good.
  • 100 percent of Spanish-American War veterans are dead.
  • 50 percent of the electorate think that polls are misleading, inaccurate and inconclusive. The other 50 percent agree 30 percent of the time with 40 percent of the results.

Bush finally tells us why "frivolous medical lawsuits" are a bad thing:

"Too many OB-GYNs aren't able to practice their love with women all across this country."

New CNN/Gallup puts Bush up by 2. (Or by 7, if you use the LV numbers.) Seems the Democrats have to get back to work on the GOTV efforts.

That said, most people seem to agree that accuracy is a bit stretched at the moment:

"Aides in both campaigns said the most accurate measure of the race would not come until sometime this week, when voters return from their Labor Day vacations and memories of the Republican convention start to fade."

A neat picture, which might be titled "Enormous George."

Monday, September 06, 2004

It is scary to think gritty patches like southeastern Ohio can sway this election.

"Bush put $447 million into coal research last year," Mr. Williams said. "Kerry is a tree hugger." Besides, he said, "Kerry would just tax me."

Annual per capita income in the county in 2001, the last year for which statistics are available, was less than $17,000, and 10 percent of the population lived below the poverty line. A third of the houses were built before World War II, and more than half of the new births here are to teenagers. Almost 99 percent of the residents are white.

Sunday, September 05, 2004

Fashion at the RNC, whose delegates "have left no five-and-dime, no dollar store, no souvenir stand unbrowsed":

Delegates were not particularly worried about making a positive visual impression on the five undecided voters watching from home. If they were, someone surely would have suggested that the delegate from New Hampshire remove the moose from atop her head. Someone would have confiscated the brooch worn by the West Virginia delegate because it appeared to be a stuffed mouse head surrounded by organza ruffles. And someone would have warned the Alaska delegate that while her red Open ANWR cotton vest effectively delivered a political message on oil drilling, it made her look as though her follow-up phrase would be: "Would you like fries with that?"