Thursday, February 28, 2008

Two thoughts on Tuesday night's debate:

1. I can't wait until the various anchors get tired of bragging about the fact that their various debates have "no rules."
2. Clinton's mangling of Dmitry Medvedev's name was forgivable (if embarrassing). But calling him "Medvedova... whatever" was a little too reminiscent of John Gibson for my taste.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Barack Obama hates America. Rep. Jack Kingston [one fish, two fish] and CNN [red fish, blue fish] thought you should know.

An interesting essay about political plagiarism from Sunday's Week in Review.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

In the interest of saving my time and yours, here's a roundup of some other campaign-finance-related things that I dislike about John McCain today:

  • A good summary of the current campaign finance story, courtesy of AMERICAblog.
  • Atrios asks "the ultimate question of campaign '08": "whether the press will actually do their jobs and occasionally point out that St. McCain is full of shit."
  • And then two reports on the DNC's upcoming FEC complaint: one from DailyKos ("McCain Breaks Law... That He Wrote"), and the other from MyDD (which quotes Howard Dean: "John McCain poses as a reformer but he seems to think reforms apply to everyone else but him.").
Also, Wonkette would like to join the New York Times in reminding you that John McCain is old.

In [un]related news, I wish the policy establishment (policymakers and talking heads alike) would hurry up and realize that every time the American public (read: me) hears the phrase "blood and treasure," it rolls its eyes.

TPM points out the wrongheadedness of allowing McCain's plaintive-but-hypocritical "but he pledged to opt-in!" argument to see the light of day.

And since he now wants to raise and spend as much as possible before the end of the summer, earlier this month he did actually opt back out. The FEC, the outfit that enforces the campaign finance laws, says McCain's not allowed to opt out. But whatever, he opted out anyway.

Explain to me how this guy gets out of the gate attacking anyone else about honoring pledges tied to the campaign finance system.
Here's my deal on the public financing system: I love the idea of it, and I can't wait until it can be implemented fairly. But there's so much money pouring into the race this year -- and the current public-funding spending limits are so low -- that if either or both candidates opt in, we're going to see some scary 527 action, on both sides. I'm fairly confident that Obama can be counted on to condemn the really below-the-belt stuff, but I lack that confidence when it comes to Clinton and McCain, and even Obama couldn't realistically be expected to disclaim the 527s entirely. (Especially if he opts in; as Paul Waldman points out, opting in unilaterally would pretty severely limit Obama's ability to respond to the venom that'll surely be coming at him from the Swiftboat crowd.)

So at some point in the future, I think public financing will be the way to go. (And frankly, if Obama [or even McCain, I say with my fingers crossed] makes it to the White House, I think that point will be sooner than later.) But until that happens, until the system is brought into line with the way recent campaigns have worked, I'm just not sure it makes sense for anyone to accept the spending limits that the public financing system imposes.

Homework assignment:

Kerry : Swift Boat Veterans for Truth :: Obama : _______

A) Some losers who met him at a party this one time in high school [for Truth]
B) The also-rans on the masthead of the 1990-1991 Harvard Law Review [for Truth]
C) Slumlords [for Truth]
D) John McCain

That Texas state senator who embarrassed himself (and Obama) (and Chris Matthews) on Hardball last week may not be as dumb as he seemed:

My most unfortunate gaffe is not, in any way, a comment on Senator Obama, his substantial record, or the great opportunity we all share to elect him President of the United States. ...

In the meantime, let’s not lose focus on what’s important in this election. It’s not my stunning televised defeat in "Stump the Chump."
Still, can't imagine the Obama campaign will be sending him out again anytime soon, what?

John McCain is a lying liar who lies sometimes.

Who knew there were even that many conservative blogs?

An interesting piece on health insurance from Ezra Klein, the only person in the world who finds health policy interesting enough to study it voluntarily. (He also happens to agree with me on The Delegate Hub).

Well this can't be a good sign:

Morale is low. After 13 months of dawn-to-dark seven-day weeks, the [Clinton campaign] staff is exhausted. Some have taken to going home early — 9 p.m. — turning off their BlackBerrys, and polishing off bottles of wine, several senior staff members said.
You have to figure that's at least mostly a reaction to my scathing critique of their pathetic Delegate Hub site, right?

This is a pretty funny picture.

(Link via Deadspin.)