Wednesday, January 30, 2008

It's Over for the Republicans

Weekly Wednesday Presidential Politics - 1/30/07

Well, Presidential Politics for America predicted last year, re-predicted before Iowa, reaffirmed it after South Carolina, and explained it a week ago today. So it was already over. But now it's reeeeeally over.

John McCain's Florida victory and ensuing endorsement from Rudy Giuliani, has relegated the rest of the Republican Primary to window dressing. While it can be expected that Mitt Romney is nowhere close to bowing out, for reasons to be explained soon, there is nothing left in the party that can stop the Straight Talk Express.

Let's take a look at the top 10 reasons McCain will win Super Tuesday and the nomination.

1. He has the lead in the delegate count, so he has horse race coverage going for him, not to mention the remaining undecided voters who want to support the eventual winner.
McCain - 93
Romney - 59
Huckabee - 40

2. He and Romney have each won three states to Huckabee's one, but one of Romney's was Wyoming.

3. McCain has won the last two states, South Carolina and Florida, to obtain all momentum.

4. Before those two states, many conservatives pointed to the fact that McCain was only doing well because of crossover appeal to open primaries. Both South Carolina and Florida were states where only registered Republicans could vote in the Republican Primary.

5. McCain is commonly regarded as the Republican with the best chance to win the general election, especially against Hillary Clinton. This cannot be underestimated, as the Republican Party is much better than their counterparts at casting aside differences in order to win elections.

6. The Rudy Giuliani endorsement consolidates almost total power among hawkish foreign policy voters. They are the same type of candidate, minimizing social issues important to the party in favor of prioritizing, you know, being alive to bicker about these social issues. This brings over the 10-15% of the country still leaning towards Giuliani. This also eases the decision for voters' undecided between the two.

7. Knocking out Giuliani and earning his endorsement sews up California (174 delegates) and New York (101), each are winner-take-all Super Tuesday states. Those two states will widen the lead to what will seem insurmountable.

8. Unlike Romney, Huckabee has left his gloves on when it comes to challenging McCain's recent spike in support. He's refused to significantly attack McCain on any issue, either in debates or ads. Instead, Huckabee has actually washed McCain in praise. It is a real possibility Huckabee is campaigning for the Vice-Presidency.

9. There might even be a wink and a nod between the two campaigns. As long as Huckabee stays in, he's siphoning votes away from Romney's social conservative base. As much as Giuliani dropping out helps McCain, Huckabee staying hurts Romney. If it was just down to McCain vs. Romney, it'd be a spectacular battle between the foreign policy conservatives and social moderates vs. the base of the Republican Party.

10. While the conservative media (Fox News, Limbaugh and co.) will do all they can to rally conservatives around Romney, the mainstream and liberal media will cover every McCain triumph and like doing it, because they've always been find of McCain.

Still, if there's any hope that this still goes to a brokered convention, it's that some time between now and Super Tuesday, conservatives will do their very best to rally around Mitt Romney. If they had any pause about supporting him because he was a Mormon or because he had a history of saying liberal things or because he was spending too much money and still losing, those will all go by the way side. Any social conservative supporting Huckabee, who now realizes not only does Huckabee have no chance to win, but he might even be on McCain's side in this, will go to Romney.

It will turn into a zero-sum contest between McCain and Romney, with the other candidates doing very little the rest of the way. McCain's national numbers will go into the 40's, Romney's into the 30's. Rush Limbaugh and conservative radio will rail against McCain for a week, bringing up McCain-Feingold, McCain-Kennedy, McCain-Lieberman and the rest of McCain's maverick tendencies to remind the Republican Party why they did not nominate him in 2000. Romney will see a lot of conservative money for the next week with promises of more to come. He'll combine that cash with his own wealth and blitzkrieg the airwaves across the country in order to subdue McCain's vote tally on February 5th.

But none of that will work. John McCain is going to win the nomination. The party will rally around him after this is evident. Then they will sit and wait for the Democrats to find someone to go up against him.

See you next week. (Remember that I blog every weekday over at Presidential Politics for America.)

Monday, January 28, 2008

State of the Union

I had planned on writing about the Kennedy clan's support of Obama, especially since it has come to light that Camp Clinton has tried to see that the Kennedys remain neutral in Decision '08. Also, I was going to compare how this endorsement was a pretty big turn of events since Bubba's first run at the seat in the White House.

However, something intervened. I came home and was surfing the 'net and came upon this YouTube music video by Sally Anthony called "So Long". Since George the Dumb's State of the Union is scheduled tonight, I thought this video appropriate and perhaps the networks should carry this instead so Americans realize exactly how important the 2008 presidential election is.

I caution you - there are some parts of the video that are not pretty, but neither is life.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Dividing & Diverting

Dividing & Diverting

On this week’s edition of the mainstream media narrative, we find one of their more tried and true numbers: dividing and diverting. Last week, we had everybody and their grandmother going to confession; this time around, we have everyone dividing…and the mainstream media diverting us from the real news that matters most.

It began late last week. Extra! Extra!—everyone get diverted by it: “Barack did this MLK event here, while Hill had to save face and do her MLK event there.” “Hillary’s losing the black vote.” “Barack’s alienating whites.” “It’s all about race and gender.” “It’s all about Bill (we like u, but would you PUHLEEZE shut up!)” “Dems. are divided here; they are divided there; they are divided everywhere.”

Tensions grew more heated in Monday’s debate. Hillary and Barack were trying to channel their inner “Hit Me with Your Best Shot:” Barack showed Hillary that he was a “real tough cookie” by mentioning her time with Walmart; Hill put another “notch in her lipstick case” by claiming that Barack once represented a slum lord. So as Hill and Barry went into death-match mode with John Edwards as the only real victor, the mainstream media had set its story no sooner than the debate ended: the Dems. are d-i-v-i-d-e-d. And what’s worse, both the Clinton and Obama campaigns blindly followed in sync with one scud attack after another. The latest word is that yet another truce has been reached.

MEANWHILE, on the other side of the moon—they clearly don’t know what to do or whom to choose. Adrift with Huck Finn, Slick Mick, Nosferatu Giuliani and Rising McCain, the Republicans are far more divided than the Dems. And yet had the media focused on what the republican candidates didn’t do to commemorate MLK’s memory and/or to court minority voters, maybe we could’ve had a fair and balanced discussion on race. Had the media put more emphasis on the 935 lies the Bush administration told about Iraq rather than the half-truths and untruths of Billary and Barack, maybe we could’ve focused more on the war. Had the media greatly publicized the 720 million dollar a day cost of the Iraq war, maybe we could focus less on Hillary’s and Barack’s positions and more on Bush’s bad decisions. Had the media not put the dividing democrat narrative in the foreground, maybe more people wouldn’t have been diverted from the troubling news about the Gaza strip that stays in the background. Should the Democratic Party and its candidates become more focused on taking the White House, they will hopefully shift the focus from these inflated divisions in the party to the many divisions George W. Bush and his party have caused for the last seven years.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Coming to a Classroom Near You: Teacher Freelancing

Coming to a Classroom Near You: Teacher Freelancing

Have you heard the story of the high school student who couldn’t tell you what s/he learned in a certain teacher’s class? What about the narrative involving parents who… “teacher shop” for the teacher who actually…teaches? Why is it that students infinitely benefit more from teacher X who teaches the same course as teacher Z? And what about those students who avoid a certain teacher because…on,no!..that teacher gives too much work?

If you have answers to any of the questions above, you’ve either witnessed, experienced, and/or read about teacher freelancing. What is teacher freelancing, you ask? Teacher freelancing is rampant in public schools, and it happens more often than you can imagine and far more frequently at the secondary level.

Teacher freelancing occurs when classroom teachers basically…do what they want. The heck with following the curriculum. The heck with standards. Never mind teaching skills and content. “Do they really need to know this?” “Is this book or that book…really that important?” “Homework doesn’t r-e-a-l-l-y matter.” “Honestly, it’s far more important to be the students’ ‘friends.’” “Because it’s more important to help them realize who they are.” “The heck with all that dated ‘traditional stuff.’” Alas, the classroom as therapy philosophy rules; how kids “feel” supersedes concerns of how and whether or not they've learned.

Believe me: this approach to teaching—or any variation thereof—has sadly come to dominate the teaching profession as of late. Instead of teaching skills and content, the many teachers who adopt this approach “freelance” as therapists, as older and supposedly wiser friends, as self-help gurus, as self-proclaimed rebels without a cause, as “Kurtz” characters who fancy themselves as demigods or…-goddesses over underlings who worship them.

Look, I’m not advocating for teachers to be robots, to be void of feeling and character, or to avoid making personal connections with kids. Teachers are professionals; we are hired to do our job—to deliver an adopted and approved curriculum, to teach skills and content, to treat students respectfully as individuals, to stay abreast of research and theory, and, above all else, to make sure that students learn. Teachers need not freelance; they just need to do their jobs.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Dolores Umbridge '08

Dolores Umbridge '08

The reappearance of the ever dreadful, ever affected Peggy Noonan joining NBC networks as an analyst does seem like a sign of the apocalypse. Hey: The New York Times went under the bus for Sith Kristol, so NBC had to roll over dead for Smeggy Noonan. Where ARE David Brooks and Kate O’Beirne when you need them?

With all her posturing and fake sweetness, Noonan strangely resembles a real-life version of Harry Potter archconservative wizard, Dolores Umbridge. Ms. “read my lips” Noonan was a guest analyst last night on MSNBC’s coverage of the Nevada caucus. She then magically appeared this morning on “Meet the Press.”

Noonan is so sickening and scripted that she seems like a resentful reject from a high school drama production. Last night and today, she went on in histrionic fashion to reminisce about the Reagan revolution, to claim that the Republican Party is in search of “its soul,” and to warn that albeit she worked for Reagan, Bush I and Bush junior, she so dislikes the idea of presidential dynasties in American politics???? Peggy: are you trying to convince me or are you trying to convince yourself? Let’s not forget, the woman who made the case against Hillary Clinton (because she didn't hate Hillary; she only had "contempt" for her) can’t stand the idea of a Clinton restoration.

Look, I understand that these media outlets must have a fair representation of both liberal and conservative commentators. And I’m rejoicing in the fact that thankfully liberal Rachel Maddow is becoming a regular for MSNBC and conservative Matthew Dowd is cameo-ing on ABC—two, normal, intelligent, level-headed commentators. But why The New York Times signed a pact with a neoconservative Sith and NBC went to the ministry of magic to get Dolores Umbridge is beyond me.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

America's Next Top Confessor

America’s Next Top Confessor

Did Mother Superior Pelosi humble those democratic candidates into good behavior for Tuesday night’s debate? Did Reverend Reid tell them to play nice? And what about Tweety Matthews’ mea culpa monologue? Was it as sincere as it could’ve or should’ve been? Or does he need to spend more time on his “hail Hillaries” because he’s been such a dirty little boy?

This week’s mainstream media narrative should’ve been entitled “America’s Next Top Confessor.” Because I have a Ph.D courtesy of my Catholic upbringing—I do love my mom and her guilt tripping—and my Jesuit education in the metaphysics of guilt, let me break this story down for you.

It started late Monday evening, when the 24/7 mainstream media reported that Hillary and Barack made nice-nice: they called a truce. Hillary and her surrogates made some heinously “ill-advised” comments about MLK and Barack’s drug confessions, and the mainstream media hyper-inflated Bill Clinton’s “fairy tale” description of Barack’s stances on Iraq to suggest that everyone in the Clinton camp and their grandmothers were full-blown racists. The consequences of confession continued into the debate on Tuesday night when everyone was really well-behaved, including Brother Tim Russert, whom you know hates Hillary more than Satan himself and those bad-breath nuns who silenced all us Catholic boys in grade school.

While Hill’s and Barry’s truce didn’t last too long—on Wednesday, they were at it again with all kinds of insults both subtle and not-so-subtle, Hillary did score yet another model confession with none other than the one, the only, the most fabulous…can I get a drum beat, puhleeze!: Ms. Tyra Banks. Appearing on Tyra’s show, Hill told T. that yeah, Bill embarrassed the heck out of her with that skanky Monica episode. With some prayer and more prayer and continued prayer coupled with introspection, Hill told T. how she got down with her bad self to tai-chi her anger, her resentment, and her pain. And Hill went on to confess that that’s the advice she gives scorned women everywhere: just be your self. OKaaaaaaay. Like it or not, though, Hill is unequivocally the runner-up in becoming….America’s Next Top Confessor.

But the winner of America’s Next Top Confessor—thanks to David Brock’s awesome work at Media Matters, is Tweety Matthew’s confession (sort of) of being sexist in his coverage of Hillary Clinton and female politicians in general. For years now, Tweety has been utterly unfair and un-balanced in his treatment of Hillary Clinton. Thankfully, on Thursday he confessed to it—well, maybe he was told to do so or else. Call me a cynic: I don’t believe Tweety’s “I’m sorry” for a minute. We Catholic boyz know when one of our own—like him or not—is being sincere or just succumbing to Catholic guilt in its most torturous form. Everyone knows that when interrogation includes torture, the victim simply confesses to stop the pain. So it does seem that ol’ Chris may still want to go to real confession to think about how he sickly worships Father McCain and Dark Priest Giuliani.

Perhaps on the next season of the mainstream media’s America’s Next Top Confessor we will witness the episodic confessions of the Iraq War, and the American lives lost, for which NO ONE seems to take responsibility.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Presidential Power Rankings (Part 2)

Weekly Wednesday Presidential Politics - 1/16/07

First, feel free to quench your thirst for presidential politics over at my blog, Presidential Politics for America. Over there today I'm breaking down last night's Michigan results and there will be many more things to talk about leading up to Nevada and South Carolina, including an impending Republican brokered convention, Clinton and Obama on the same ticket (specifically how it's not going to happen), Edwards potential to choose the Democratic nominee, and much more.

Now, on to the conclusion of the Presidential Power Rankings, which began last Friday. Remember, these are the rankings for most likely to be the next President.

3. Hillary Clinton - I really don't like her chances in a general election, but she's got a 50/50 shot at being a nominee, and only one other person of either party can say that. If she somehow lucks into a contest against Huckabee or Romney, she should win the election when VP nominee Richardson brings over New Mexico and Florida and the rest of the electoral map stays the same.

In the Democratic nomination process, the Obama-Clinton duel is the definition of a toss up. Clinton currently holds solid leads in national polls, but it'll be a close race in Nevada this Saturday, which gives Obama more credibility. Then Obama will win South Carolina to further dig into Clinton's national lead which Senator Obama has been softening since the end of December.

When it comes time for Super Tuesday, Obama will have a small lead in the delegate count. The national polls will then be about as reliable the infamous New Hampshire polls, meaning either one has a legit shot at coming out on top, and in the unlikely event that one of them dominates (note: this domination could only be from Clinton and her strength in NY, NJ, and California), the race is alive at least until March 4th.

2. John McCain - Last night's Michigan loss was disappointing, but by no means backbreaking. Simply, a Michigan win would have put McCain in position for a South Carolina win. Those two wins would have resulted in a runaway McCain nomination. All the second place finish means is that McCain's road to victory becomes a bit more difficult. South Carolina is a three-way race with Huckabee and Romney. The winner of that will be the leader heading into Super Tuesday, but as long as McCain doesn't finish at a distant third, he will remain the favorite.

Ultimately, McCain is the candidate that the Republican Party can rally around easiest. For eight years, he's been the third most visible face of the party, after President Bush and Vice-President Cheney. He's been at the front of a war that is still popular with Fox News and the party. He led a troop surge which has quelled violence. He has a record that is more conservative than many think, though isolated maverick forays like McCain-Feingold have always been a trademark considered undesirable in the Republican Party.

In a general election, John McCain is the favorite over Hillary Clinton. With Republicans coming out in full force to vote against Clinton, the Democratic ire of the last five years will be negated and they'll break even with voters registered with one of the two parties. Then it becomes a battle for the center, and Independents love McCain, while Clinton's unfavorables among non-Democrats are notorious. With John Edwards' non-viability, there's only one candidate from the Democratic Party that can compete against McCain in a general election.

1. Barack Obama - The 2008 general election will be won in the middle, in between the trenches. No candidate since Clinton appeals to the moderates of this country like Barack Obama does now. His continuing rhetoric about making America whole again appeals to every Independent and moderate who could not bring themselves to join the bitter partisanship that has developed in this country since the 1994 Republican revolution. Obama has untapped potential to attract moderate and young voters, meaning he could defeat almost any Republican that the GOP nominates.


Only two things stand in the way of Senator Obama getting the chance to transform the nation from the Oval Office: the two people above him on this list. Enough has been written about the Clinton-Obama duel. What could shape up to be a very interesting general election is Obama vs. McCain. It's hope vs. reality. Rhetoric vs. straight talk. Liberal vs. conservative. Domestic agenda vs. foreign policy. It's the yin vs. yang of America, and you couldn't pick two better candidates to represent the balance and articulate their side. Moreover, they are the two candidates that most appeal to the center. The two candidates have the integrity to only speak to the issues and have a great debate about the direction this country needs to go.

There's a lot to look forward to and a lot still left to analyze, but no matter the results, we're in for a treat.

Monday, January 14, 2008

The Dark Memories They Carry

The Dark Memories They Carry

Transfixed by the ’08 election news mainstream media frame (myself included), we need to keep in mind that there is other news to report.

Yesterday, The New York Times published a feature, “Across America, Deadly Echoes of Foreign Battles,” that should be required reading for every American. This stunning report details the horrors our brave service men and women must endure after tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan. The feature focuses on the fact that “at least 121 veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan committed a killing in this country, or were charged with one, after returning home from war.” However, Deborah Sontag and Lizette Alvarez, who authored the piece, go into greater depth about “combat trauma,” “survivors guilt,” “PTSD,” and the history of veterans returning home who carry with them the horrors they have seen.

Perhaps the most disturbing part of the report reveals that although we know more about PTSD and how it affects our veterans, there STILL seems to be a huge problem with diagnosing and evaluating this disorder BEFORE something horrible happens. In fact, sadly enough, diagnoses and evaluations often come after the fact: after a suicide, after a homicide, after another internal war that the brave veteran must experience and may possibly lose.

Addendum: Check this out at The Huffington Post.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Talking about the Divide

Talking about the Divide

Cheers to The Day’s Chuck Potter, who, in his column yesterday, confronted a reader that questioned why Potter, an African-American, frequently—not always—addresses race.

I’m always dumbfounded why white folks think IT’S not o.k. for African-Americans to talk about race. I’m equally dumbfounded why some whites think IT’S not o.k. for African-Americans to examine race in a way that might perhaps implicate others who aren’t as 1% more conscious as they could be in terms of how racism may affect their very lives. White folks that transparently cloak their own racism by generally characterizing an African-American who talks about racial conflict as a racist him- or herself are only fooling themselves. Isn’t the role of the “overseer”—even of dialogue—a ghost of America’s past?

Hopefully, many of us have learned from the liberation movements, which gained more traction in the ‘60s, that silence = death. We will never move forward as a civilization if we don’t confront—in one way or another—the “isms” and “phobias” that plague us as a people and that plague our democracy. Talking about these “things” is very important. Talking about these “things” is one of many ways to reach across the divide.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Presidential Power Rankings

Weekly Presidential Politics - 1/11/07

It's been three weeks since my last post on here, but for good reason. Over at my site, Presidential Politics for America, I've made a weekday post everyday since December 3rd, which, coupled with my job, has kept me too busy to guest write on this fantastic blog.

Therefore, upon my return today, there's a lot of catching up to do. I will thus address every candidate in the most eye-pleasing way - list form! Here are the Power Rankings for the race to the White House, ranking each remaining candidate in likelihood of being our next President, beginning with the least likely.

T8 - Fred Thompson, Ron Paul, Dennis Kucinich, Mike Gravel, Duncan Hunter - One chance in a thousand... combined.

7. John Edwards - If he won Iowa, he'd be in this list's top 3, and if nominated, Edwards would actually have the greatest chance of any potential nominee of winning the general election. However, he neither won Iowa nor does he have a realistic shot at the nomination. Therefore, the reason less attractive general election candidates like Mitt Romney and Mike Huckabee are ahead of him on this list is that at least they have a path to their party's nomination.

6. Mitt Romney - Although incredibly unlikely, it's easy to see how Romney can make a run at the Republican nomination, you just have to look really, really hard. Michigan votes this Tuesday and unlike the Democrats, the Republicans are still awarding the state delegates despite its controversial move into January. Born in Michigan and polling near the top in Michigan polls, it's not out of the question that Romney's last financial push will win the state, thus reviving his campaign and influx of contributors. If he does in fact win Michigan this Tuesday, he'll be up in the delegate count, and would be working off two firsts (Michigan, Wyoming) and two seconds (Iowa, New Hampshire). Then he's a South Carolina victory away from being the frontrunner. So what's the problem with this feasible scenario? He needs to win both.

5. Mike Huckabee - Huckabee has an easier path to the nomination than Romney. Michigan, like New Hampshire, is top three territory for Huckabee. He needed to Iowa, which he did, and he needs to win South Carolina. In between, "as-expecteds" will work just fine, and he's right on pace with his strategy. He can't be ranked as highly as Giuliani for a couple reasons. First, with a problem that Giuliani actually shares - there's a significant portion of the Republican Party that does not want Huckabee nominated. In fact, his potential nomination has driven many Reagan alum to support McCain before it's too late.

His second shortcoming for this Power Ranking is that, despite haveing as good of a chance as Giuliani to win the nomination, his chances in the general election are decidedly lower. His appeal to social conservatives is what is pushing him in this race, but his background as a Baptist minister will make Democrats nervous and give Independents enough unease that they'll opt for a new party in the White House.

4. Rudy Giuliani - Remember him? Remember he was leading all national polls by double digits? Now, while technically competitive within a few points nationally (of Huckabee and McCain) Giuliani is locked in slowly degrading polling numbers. The man is clinging to relevance and viability, but make no mistake, he is still relevant and viable. If he can hold national poll numbers around 20% by Super Tuesday, he will be thrust into the lead thanks to California, New York, and New Jersey, and then use that enormous bounce to push to the other primaries. However, if he continues to fall with each early primary, putting him in low double digits by February 5th, the leading Republican candidate at the time should catch him in those big states and end the Giuliani campaign.

If Giuliani were to win the nomination, he is a viable force in a general election. His moderation on social issues, which, to his credit, he never strayed too far from in his quest for the nomination, makes him palatable to anyone who doesn't want to support the Democratic nominee (a determining factor if the Democrats nominate Clinton). There's a large bloc of voters who want them kept safe and think Giuliani's the guy to do it. After that, social issues are secondary. This has always been Giuliani's greatest apparent strength as a candidate and it has the potential to get him to November.

Check back for my normal Wednesday post to see the top 3. They won't be impacted regardless of the results of Tuesday's Michigan Primary. And don't forget to keep up with the more frequent postings at Presidential Politics for America.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Coffee, Wine and Dems.

Mainstream Media Patrol: Coffee, Wine, and Dems.

Oh no! Not again! One of the most annoying MSM narratives from the ’04 election was the myth that read something like this: the reason Democrats, including John Kerry, lose elections has to do with their choice of coffee—Starbucks—and their choice of wine: white—Chablis or Chardonnay. In other words, Dems. are educated snobs, elitists, Volvo-driving L-I-B-E-R-A-L-S—or at least that’s what the MSM would like to emphasize in its framing of things.

In a week when McCain and Clinton resurrect from the dead, in a week when Mean Girl Dowd unearthed her disdain for a first lady who kept her man, the Mainstream Media excavated what? Election 2004 narrative flashback: Coffee, Wine, and Dems. And I thought this was an election about ch-ch-ch-changes.

As the other ’08 MSM narrative threads seem to diminish, I’ve smelled something familiar this way come from the pundit class. They’ve rolled out a twice told tale, and here’s how they are re-packaging it: Obama has the college crowd, the elites, the Starbucks drinkers, the snobs; and conversely—yeah, whatever, Hillary has the uneducated, the poor, working class, the Maxwell House drinkers—I suppose, the common folks. Even dark angel Karl Rove described Hillary’s win in New Hampshire in terms of how she captured “beer drinkers.”

Sure, data from exit polling reveals how candidates perform in certain demographics. Campaigns use this information to strategize accordingly. Nonetheless, it’s fascinating how the MSM frames and labels Democratic blocks of voters in such drastic, polarizing terms: “Starbucks drinkers,” “White wine snobs,” “cafeteria Catholics,” “Volvo drivers,” “elitists,” etc. Whereas the MSM framing of Republican voters—“evangelicals,” “values voters,” “suburban, strip mall folks,” “church-going”—seems far less drastic.

We all know people who drink Starbucks and who prefer white wine—hopefully, not Chablis. Some people who fall into these categories may be Democrats; some may not. At a time when the themes of change and unity dominate the political stories in the mainstream media, it’s unfortunate to see an old, manufactured myth re-awaken from the dead.

Monday, January 07, 2008

It's Kristol Clear

It’s Kristol Clear

Just when I was ready to build a bridge; just when I imagined that the days of partisan politics might be over—indulge me for a minute!; just when I wanted to pat myself on the back for not foaming at the mouth over a new columnist at The New York Times, Neocon Sith Lord Bill Kristol f*cking shatters all hope.

Lord Billy made his debut today. Beginning his column by thanking Senator Barack Obama for preventing the possibility of another Clinton presidency, Billy Boy then goes on to insult the good Senator from Illinois: Kristol criticizes Barack for being a “liberal” Democrat—as opposed, I suppose, to a Judas Joe Lieberman Democrat—whom the Neocons fancy; Sith Bill says that Obama will “increase the scope of Nanny state”; and then Bill Pistol implies that Obama will not appoint the likes of Roberts and Alito to the Supreme Court—Thank the Jedi Yoda, for the force’s sake.

Wait, it gets better: Sith Bill then invokes…Troll Michelle Malkin—who oddly resembles a glammed-up ewok from time to time—for expert testimony in Kristol’s overall argument: to make the case for conservative Mike Huckabee as the GOP candidate who could beat Barack Obama should there be an ’08 election of change.

It’s Kristol clear that The New York Times, with William Safire long retired from the column page and David Brooks as the lone conservative remaining, wanted more balance. It’s just unclear why out of all the conservative intellectuals out there—and there are many, many respectable ones, they would disturb the force by making Sith Kristol a regular.

Saturday, January 05, 2008

Mainstream Media Patrol & '08

This is a fascinating diary at MyDD. Check it out.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Hating Hill, Resurrecting McCain, and Jumping on the Change Engine

Mainstream Media Patrol: Hating Hill, Resurrecting McCain, and Jumping on the Change Engine

OK—it’s caucus night and things are still “unpredictable,” according to the mainstream media polling whores. On the Republican side, it seems like porn-star named Mitt Romney will battle with “I’m Evangelical, vote-for-me” Huckabee—what a scab! On the Democratic side, it seems like Obama and Edwards are surging and Hill is sliding. What will the outcome be? Who REALLY knows?

WHAT WE do know is that the mainstream media has made the Iowa Caucus the foreground of its frame and thus luxuriates in spinning a meta-narrative that consists of “smaller” narratives taking shape.

Here are some to watch for:

*HATING HILL: It’s obvious that there is a growing, contagious deep-seated dislike of Hillary Clinton among the talking heads; just watch MSNBC’s Tweety Matthews' relentless male castration fear disorder for two minutes. But the contagion is not just limited to mainstream media boyz, as Mean Girl Mo Dowd recently admitted that the Clinton family drama “pulled her back in,” in a Michael Corleone, sort of way. Hey, MO: did you ever leave?

*RESURRECTING McCAIN: There’s yet ANOTHER “love song” for John McCain, whom, I kid YOU NOT, Howard Fineman and his boyz are conveniently grouping with Obama, Huckabee, and Edwards as “buzz” creators; surprise, surprise this week’s guest on Meet the Press: John McCain.

*JUMPING ON THE CHANGE ENGINE: After YEARS of indulging in Bush and Company—including beating war drums and producing fake news here and there and no WMD anywhere, now many of the MSNBCers and CNNers are jumping on the change engine: “we need to change,” “we want change,” and “we ARE change.” "Heartache to heartache, we stand": You can almost hear the catchy lyrics to Benatar’s “Love is a Battlefield.” PLEEZE. And thus, the mainstream media’s latest “change” crush is Barack Obama, whom I DO LIKE—don’t get me wrong. But I just get grossed out with all of Tweety's pining for Obama. Don't you?

What does this all mean? I really don’t know, but with the mainstream media and its meta-narrative spinning all over the place, politics is more than a battlefield, it’s a war.