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05 October 2008


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Hhmm, UFSA. United Fascist States of America. Gotta write new songs for Superbowl.

Mad Dog

Johnny-come-lately, hah! *g*

On the "too much power" issue, yes, but remember, these are Democrats! A party whose ability to under-reach is matched by no other.

On the Economic front, so much debt will be a large factor in Democratic under-reach.

On the Foreign Policy front, Democratic under-reach will serve us well for a time.

On the Supreme Court front (and the rest of the Judicial branch), again Democratic under-reach will serve us well.

As a matter of fact, Democratic under-reach in general is probably just what the Doctor ordered for the next 2-4 years after almost 8 years of extreme over-reach by Republicans.

And the Culture Wars so dear to Republican hearts (what hearts?)?

On life support for a bit (10 minutes max, after the Obama swearing-in).

And then the offspring of Newts, Delays and whack-a-mole McCains will emerge from their burrows to plague us all once again.

Steve French

I imagine Palin will have a brighter future than McCain will should they lose (which seems likely).

frank durkee

I agree about "powercorrupts etc". A couple of caveats however. Disunity in the Democratic house contingent since some of the pickups will be in 'swing' districts and thus probably reenforce the Democratic Blue Dogs. that group with the few remaining Republican 'moderates' will perhaps begin to constitute something of a 'center' and opposition group to the two extremes. Restoring the economy as well as managing two wars and other activities will require some tough choices and this will have a centrifigal effect on party unity. Parties matter much less than they did when I was young ['50's ], as most politicians are effectively individual entreprenuer's today and thus subject less to party discipline and more to electoral return. Each is in some ways their own power base.
Perhaps at home the critical task will be after nationalizing the money mess and hopefully rightening it, how to re-privitize it. Moving through idealogical and operational shifts is always messy and conflicted. this will be no different.



You had predicted that racism would prevent people from moving over to Obama. Given that perspective, do you think the dredged up Ayers and Wright attacks from McCain will stick?

FWIW, I do not.


Patrick Lang

Ronald et al

The net effect of racism and all the other factors is a "moving target." There will still be a lot of racism but not enuogh to decide the outcome given all the other factors.

This estimate is still subject to revision. pl

Dan M

Sure most of you are aware of the "poll of polls" sites. If not, here they are:


The 538 site has some mathematical model (that I don't pretend to understand) that compares poll numbers at this point in the race against the past as predictors of the winner. The upshot is it has McCain a 4-1 dog.



...do you think the dredged up Ayers and Wright attacks from McCain will stick?

Pardon my jumping in here, but...

I'll suggest that this guilt-by-association tactic of the McCain campaign is going to prove to be a big loser for the GOP. The connection between Obama and Ayers is thin at best, and it opens the door for Obama's supporters to respond by noting the not-at-all-thin connection between McCain and Charles Keating (poster boy for the last economic debacle).

McCain wasn't convicted of wrongdoing in that scandal, but his public record of selling out the taxpayers for favors from a corporate parasite is clear, and his guilt is not by association: it's by his own words and deeds.

The response ads are practically writing themselves as we speak, and they won't be pretty for McCain. He has to know this line of attack on Obama is going to create plenty of blowback, so I'd suggest its use indicates complete desperation within the McCain campaign.

And with the economy in tatters, desperation is the exact opposite of what a Presidential candidate wants to be seen demonstrating at this late date.

Green Zone Cafe

This is just the pendulum swinging back to the golden mean. By temperament and policies, Obama is a moderate.

I worry whether he'll be able to get anything done. When he wins, the howling and braying of Rush Limbaugh, Drudge et al. will start immediately. There will be no grace period.


Col. Lang:

Don't forget the changes that will also occur in the FAA, NIH, FEC, FCC, EPA, FDA and NASA as well as all the other agencies whose mission has been perverted by the laizzez-faire, no-science-allowed policies of the Bush administration.

alfred glenstein

in all fairness, you did think the opposite to be the case a few weeks ago:


So, what changed?

David W.

The elite Republicans can't be too sad--they had a good 10 year run where they 'busted out' the country, so now they can stick the tar baby on the Dems. Look at Bush's budgets, masterpieces of fiction and deception that they are; all they were ever designed to do is kick the can down the road. In that same light, the stimulus packages and free-flowing Treasury dollars were all meant to keep the masses happy, and the illusion going.

With the exception of a few good men and women, the Democratic Party is in on the scam, and the only true bipartisanship is in keeping the pork rolling. Anybody who thinks that DINO Nancy Pelosi is a 'San Francisco Liberal' must listen to Rush Limbaugh, because she has done nothing but roll over for the other side of the aisle. The sad thing is that she is up for re-election this year here in SF, but you wouldn't even know it if you lived here. Her only challenger is Cindy Sheehan, who, unfortunately, is a protester, not a politician, and not a credible alternative, other than a protest vote.

We have long since passed the point of absurdity in our broken goverment. Last week was just another sad reminder of how venal and corrupt these gerrymanderers are; the only way they could pass the $700 Billion blank check bailout plan was to lard it with another $150 Billion for themselves. The urgency on their part may have been real concern for the economy, or simply to wrap up this session of Congress so they could go back to their 'real' job--soliciting $$$ from corporate johns.

If we are lucky, Obama will be a replay of Bill Clinton, who at least threw a few bones to the other 99% of the country. Otherwise, it will be 'business as usual.'

Dave of Maryland

The report I heard was that the fix was in. Velvet Underground, if you like them. McCain/Palin will win with 51.something of the vote (51.2), by three electorial votes.

All thanks to vote-rigging via easily hackable touch-screen voting machines. (See the Brad Blog for sickening details on how easily this can be done.)

Then I heard that a foreign government was giving the Republican vote-riggers some competition. A guess would be that's the Israelis, favoring Barak.

On Saturday Krugman said there would be a bailout 2.0 - and the ink on bailout 1.0 wasn't even dry yet. My guess is 2 trills more money.

Kristof, in today's NYT, is still peddling the lie that we have to vote for the inexperienced Obama or be called racist.

I thought about Nader. But with the bailout it's now clear. I'm voting Green. Straight down the ticket.

But I doubt it will make any difference if we vote at all. I know it sounds like I'm hysterical, but last week was unforgivable.

Dave of Maryland

Aha! Mussolini!

Patrick Lang

Al Glenstein

I just told you in a comment above. To be crystal clear, the gross deterioration in the economic and financial situation moves my net assessment. pl


Even the wheelbound Sith, Darth Krauthammer has conceded the election to Mr. Kool. He compares him to Reagan- Mr. Kool has shown that he is is not a menace. Once that threshold has passed, then the electoral floodgates swing open.

But prediction is always a risky business, especially when it involves the future. (Apologies to Yogi Bera, I guess). Sometimes you can observe a lot by just looking.

p.s. the best comment i've seen re Palin is- how could mccain have put her in presidential succession position a hearbeat away from that old man's ticker. check'er out at with some trophy bears & wolves at grizzlybay.org

from SNL or maybe Letterman. marriage is a sacred institution forced on unwilling teenagers!

David W.

Regarding racism and religion, it is an article of wonderment that Obama can be bashed so much about Rev. Wright, but all we hear is crickets from the right about Caribou Barbie being ministered by a Kenyan witch doctor.

Duncan Kinder

I am not altogether pleased with this outcome. Power corrupts, etc. This is too much power for one party, any party.

Due to the bailout / credit crunch the federal government is going to have a great deal less power than it has had since WWII. Hopefully our society will find other means to organize itself in some productive fashion.

As for Palin, she has a promising future as a FOX News commentator, radio talk show host or the like. An outfit like Cabelas might want here as a spokesperson or even a fashion model.


Economic conditions will deteriorate significantly over the next 18 months and the Republicans will take advantage of the situation in the 2010 elections. We will then get much closer to a divided government once again.


Foreigners will also play a greater role in dictating US policy in exchange for bailing us out of our toxic mess, thus, I think there is good reason to think that the absolute power of a sole superpower days are over.

Maureen Lang

Gloves come off in new Obama/Biden ad that calls McCain "erratic" & "out of touch" with economic issues:


m savoca

Colonel Lang

overall i agree with your predictions.

but sir, if i may say so without any intended disrespect, none of your hopes nor concerns may matter at all if...

we are entering a world condition that is off the charts.

the federal government is beyond bankrupt, many US corporations are in deep trouble, our balance of trade is so imbalanced that tariffs and a breakdown in world trade are strong possibilities, consumers are tapped out having used their homes as ATMs and now they are debt over-burdened.

i'm hearing things said by people i trust that indicating there is about a 50/50 chance the world financial system may be melting down in the next month or two.

so what do traditional democratic or republican or liberal or conservative politicians do in this environment...how will any of the exponents of these political belief systems perform under this extraordinary and unpredictable circumstances?

some of the answer can be found in the past.. one of the greatest political collaborations to be found during the great depression occurred between a democrat then president F Roosevelt and a Republican F LaGuardia (then mayor of NYC).

Great men and women will emerge and strange allegiances must, and will be forged.

somehow we must create a free market system that both encourages individualism, growth and creativity to flourish while at the same time, this system is monitored and regulated to ensure that theft, fraud, endless selfishness and gross negligence are stomped down to a minimum.

Is such a system possible? Only if reasonable men and women are inclined to set aside ideology in search of a system that is... well...in a word, fair!

fairness, a simple but important consideration.

its long past time to start praying that our leaders are inspired to bring forth justice.


Wpl, that sounds right -- and was mostly predictable, based on economic data. When the recession started isn't clear, but I'd say the warning signs were clear by March, and the bad news was probably baked in by August or so. Incumbent parties lose elections in recession years.

As for the Ds (I call them "Eisenhower Republicans"), yeah, they'll have some majorities, but they won't be 1964-liberal-consensus majorities. I wouldn't worry too much about overreach. Mostly, I worry about their continued collective desire to define themselves merely as not being the train wreck that is the modern GOP. A more-pathetic opposition party may be hard to imagine, but a more-useless majority party is difficult to see, too.

On the bright side, such as it is, we are guaranteed interesting times. Though given what's going on in the financial system right now, that was baked in, too.

Nancy K

Dave of Maryland, don't feel so negative. I believe it was mentioned on this blog just a few weeks ago that in a democracy we can vote for whom we want and we deserve who we get. If throwing away your vote by voting Green makes you feel better or alleves your conscience than go for it. But I feel we are definitly at the crossroads in our country and sometimes you just have to take a chance that the person who is advocating change, Obama, really means it and that the change will be positive.


I wish I could be confident in "Lang's Fearless Forecast," but with four weeks, two televised debates, and millions of advertising dollars yet to spend, anything could happen.

I agree the Ayers-Wright-ScaryBlackMan attacks are only going to make McCain look desperate at this point. They've written a new stump speech for Gidget of the North incorporating the new/old scare tactics. It's a shame there's no swimsuit competition this year.

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