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23 October 2008


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Why would any human being ever want to be in government?


McCain sunk his aspiration with his Palin pick, almost as bad as if he would have picked his first choice which was Lieberman, but when McCain saw how much loathing there was against Lieberman, McCain looked elsewhere.

Palin is sinking McCain's boat:


Sarah Palin Dragging Down Republican Ticket - Polls

William R. Cumming

Well you could be right and hope you are but with a system whereby 50 individual states each with their own voting system elects the President (a justification by the way to federalize the vote by making the popular vote winner the WINNER) we really may have a quite long drawn out process. In my judgement the rationale used by SCOTUS in reaching its result in the Presidential election of 2000 opened the doors to more court litigation, not less, of elections, including federal, state, and local. Interesting that Congress left the decision unexamined in detail even by oversight hearings. Also even more interesting is the almost total failure of Constitutional and legal scholars, not always the same, for not providing expert analysis of the rationale, and not just the result, in detail is a grossly negligent act of the first order. Now that non-feasance may really come back to haunt the system since very few legal specialists are fully immersed in election law intricacies. Hoping for the best, but fearing the worst.


with the way things are going. The financial armageddon will happen before January handover. Reality on the ground has moved on and pricing in election concerns.

Pakistan and Argentina are defaulting. We'll see how far it will spread. But latin america definitely looks shaky now.

Pakistan implosion is a done deal. Just have to figure out how many people will die in the process. Since nobody has fixed the clown show in Afghanistan conflict. It now takes care of itself.


Company Bond Risk Surges to Record on Argentina, Pakistan Default Concern


Leila Abu-Saba

Palin *might* become queen of Alaska but she will *NOT* become "Queen of the Northwest." Northwest would include Washington State and Oregon. I doubt those folks are having any of her. Like California, those states are split along a line running north-south, so that the eastern sections may very well be more Palin-friendly. But the power, the money and the population lie on the staunchly blue coasts with their diverse and creative cities: Seattle, Portland, other smaller places.

Nope, the Northwest won't claim Palin, either. I think by the time this year is over, she'll be glad if Wasilla takes her back. I am going to pray for her right now.


Yes, I'm going to change my earlier assessment about a close election and say it will be an electoral blowout with a popular vote spread of about 5 percentage points. I think your analogy to a "perfect storm" is apt. McCain perhaps had a better chance than any other GoP candidate to survive such a storm, but it will probably not be enough.

I also agree about the worry of full party control of the government, especially since it looks as if they have a decent shot at getting enough seats to prevent Senate filibusters. The Democrats, out of power for so long, will, I believe, take too much advantage of this situation and will pay a price for that down the road.

So, in the end, I think either a McCain or Obama presidency will not be good for the US long-term, but in different ways and for different reasons. Still, it will be interesting to see how the most liberal President since Carter will govern. Interesting times are ahead of us I think.


Hey, I'm an Oregonian. Less of the "Queen of the Northwest" stuff, if you please.

While there are valid reasons for clubbing WA, OR and ID together, AK is not exactly akin to the other three. (OR and WA are fairly reliably Democratic as a whole, though there is a lot of cross-voting in down-ballot races). Alaska votes Republican by fairly ridiculous margins.

Not to mention the fact that the Governor of the only oil-subsidized state in the US was hardly known in OR before her selection as VP. Also,the proportion of evangelicals is pretty low in OR and WA, comparatively speaking.

Less stereotyping, please: Queen of the Ice (or Moose; or Alaska), yes: NW, no.


"The Democrats will hold both houses of Congress so strongly that they will be tempted to govern unwisely, pushing the country farther to the left than its nature will allow."

A lot of the Democrats who will be elected will be "Blue Dogs." They will happily join what's left of the Republicans (who will be even further to the right) in blocking any administration proposal. For example, the cries of "pay-go!" and "balance the budget" will rise from the depths after a seeming century of silence under Republican rule.

From the point of view of this hippy-dippy liberal, the push "to the left" will be almost imperceptible - surely less than the country needs.



I too am beginning to think we might actually see the repudiation of the bankrupt Republicans which they so richly deserve. But I'm still not certain...

I don't live in a swing state but you do. Two days ago, after reading of cases of voter fraud in West Virginia and Tennessee, I swore to myself I was going to fly across country to Virginia and make sure your crucial swing state wasn't victimized by voter suppression tactics. Driving a bus full of college students to polling places was what I had in mind.

Now I'm sure your first reaction to such out-of-state gestures could be that the Commonwealth doesn't need any damn West Coast agitators to show them how to vote, but perhaps I'm wrong. On a local level (and keeping in mind that you live in 'Northern Virginia,' not 'REAL Virginia,' as Nancy Pfotenhauer sniffed through her nose-job), could you as an election observer tell us what things look like on the ground there?

If Obama wins Virginia he almost certainly wins the election. Virginia or Ohio. He may take both. But for those of us staying up at nights in a cold sweat, whose votes don't count for anything because our states are already locked up, could you let us know if anything could or should be done at this late stage?

To address the main theme of this post: Sarah Palin may have whatever ass-backwards ideas about the Vice Presidency, but in a McCain Administration, does anyone think that McCain would voluntarily give up the same powers that GWB did? McCain, for all his many flaws, is still a much stronger leader than George Bush. And Palin, as odious as she is, can't even conceive of Cheney's power plays.


I'm 57 and have never seen electoral dynamics like these. After the republican convention, I felt that Obama would likely win the popular vote by 2-3 points, and have perhaps a 20 vote margin in the electoral college.

However, the tideswell for Obama these past two weeks seems unprecedented. And I think it cannot all be attributed to the collapse of the financial markets. I have a good feeling that the electorate is venting its absolute disgust at these past 8 years.

A good, wise repudiation. It gives me some faith in democracy--again.

Charles I

"The Democrats will hold both houses of Congress so strongly that they will be tempted to govern unwisely, pushing the country farther to the left than its nature will allow.'

Maybe so, Pat, you seem quite fixed on this prospect, perhaps with the present example in mind.

Given how far to the lawless right the political pendulum has been VIGOUROUSLY, ASSIDUOUSLY PUSHED TO THE RIGHT SEVERAL DECADES NOW, the laws of nature and political physics mean the pendulum will swing back as far as the energy accumulated in its current hyper-polarized trajectory provides. How could it be otherwise?

The country's nature can be pushed to lawless warmongering and installation of a plutocracy of profits that socializes losses, yet it may survive. The Democrats may be "tempted to govern unwisely". Compared to what has been permitted, that sounds like the risk of a cold compared to the present cancer.


I think the real danger is that the Democrats will be tempted to govern so unwisely that Palin might stand a realistic shot at presidency in 2012. It seems improbable today and one should hope it doesn't happen--at least given what we know at the moment--but that Palin will be out of political picture in the future is not something we can take for granted.

Strudel & Shotguns

UNLESS ... unless they do in the swing states what they did in Florida in 2000. Link: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/09/us/politics/09voting.html?_r=2&oref=slogin&oref=slogin

Unthinkable? Think again.

Patrick Lang


Yes. You are right. "We don't want no outside agitators here."

The funny thing about the drivel about real and unreal Virginians is that there is really a lot less difference of that sort than the political pundits would like to believe. People like Matthews and Chuck Todd rarely get more than ten miles from the Potomac River and do not understand the amount of self-selection that takes place in new people in the Washington metro area itself. In general, people who choose to live in northern Virginia as opposed to Maryland or the district are opting to live in places where the judicial and electoral systems are quite different from those in the terra incognita across the river. There are many examples of difference. Gun control would be one. We have virtually none in northern Virginia. Those not comfortable here tend to move over there. People tend to think that this is an area inhabited by transients. That is actually much less true in core areas like Alexandria than some would like to believe. The non-transient population in the city of Alexandria is certainly the majority in a city still dominated by th descendants of its 18th Century founders.

My wife was an election official here for many years. We know the electoral system extremely well. This state is about as tamper proof as any place you will find. The attitide here is one of a fiercely participatory citizenry that guards Jeffersonian tradition vigilantly. Nobody is going to steal the election here. Churchy nuttyness? Take note of the fact that neither Robertson nor the late Falwell ever succeeded in having one of their sponsorees elected to a statewide office.

The rest of the commonwealth is not much different.

Obama and the Democrats will run well across the state this year. They will not be in the majority everywhere but they will run well. This does not mean that the state has turned blue. It means that the Democrats will run well this year. pl



We like small town mayors here in Michigan. I even told our village president all we need to do is follow Sarah's example and hire a Washington lobbyist to get us $20MM in earmarks! Of course in Detroit they are now in awe; $150,000 in clothes- in two weeks - that's more bling than Kwame Kilpatrick managed in a couple of years!

All that spending also explains the double digit Obama lead in a state that went for McCain in 2000. Yes, the evangelicals, or more accurately the fundamentalists, love her. She will be on the 'I'm a victim of liberal democrats and the mainstream media' fundraising tour for a long time to come.

Dave of Maryland

Obama gets the vote, but vote-rigging denies him the victory. Karl Rove is working this election, just as he's worked the last two. He likes challenges. He made Kerry out to be a coward, and that was a challenge. Stealing the vote outright is in his grasp. He will not be able to resist.

Unless.... unless.... there are other hands rigging the vote, in addition Rove's. Of this there have been hints. In any event, get set for a long, wild ride on Election night.


Col. Lang:

Way to go!

Having people who want to vote for you is one thing. Allowing them to actually do so can be another. It was Florida in ’00, Ohio in ’04 and God knows how many states it will be in ’08. The Roveians are not done perverting the system. Obama has every reason to be concerned about complacency.

Examples: The voting machines are still a problem. Look at the long lines of early voters in Florida – reports are that they cut off the line at 3:00pm because it’s a 3 to 5 hour wait to vote. When they work, the Florida machines are supposed to produce both the ballots and the paper receipts. (Diebold again!)

There are reports of problems with the touch screens in West Virginia and Tennessee. When the prospective voter touches the screen for the candidate of their choice, the screen flips to the other candidate. Fortunately the ‘flipping’ appears to be bipartisan but that doesn’t help if you expect 2 Democratic votes for every one Republican.

Purging of new voters has become a successful way of life in Colorado and despite the SCOTUS ruling overturning the en banc decision of the Appellate Court requiring the Ohio Secretary of State to ensure that new voter registrations match up with existing federal data bases (the tactic used in Colorado); the Ohio Republicans are not done. The list goes on.

McCain done? I don’t think so. The social/religious conservatives will successfully charge him as the sole agent responsible for their failure. The charge will stick because no other Republicans will come to his support. He is not well liked by the other half of the party. It’s easy to believe that he might also be charged with being an agent of the Devil but you never know.

The social/religious folks are already lining up to support Palin in 2012. Get used to her. She is not going to go away unless Alaska convicts her of something. Although some voters have clearly gotten over the ‘tingle’ she produces, the Vigueries, Schlaflys and Dobsons of the world have not.

It will be interesting to see what comes of the proposal for a Conservative Convention


It would be a good thing to have a government made up of human beings.

Kind of like Mike and the jewish ladies in the following excerpt from warandpiece.com ?

Politico's Ben Smith:

Upon arriving at the Hamilton County Board of Elections in Cincinnati to vote early today I happened upon some friends of my mother's —three small, elderly Jewish women. They were quite upset as they were being refused admitance to the polling location due to their Obama T- Shirts, hats and buttons. Apparently you cannot wear Obama/McCain gear into polling locations here in Ohio.... They were practically on the verge of tears.

After a minute or two of this a huge man (6'5", 300 lbs easy) wearing a Dale Earnhardt jacket and Bengal's baseball cap left the voting line, came up to us and introduced himself as Mike. He told us he had overheard our conversation and asked if the ladies would like to borrow his jacket to put over their t-shirts so they could go in and vote. The ladies quickly agreed. As long as I live I will never forget the image of these 80-plus-year-old Jewish ladies walking into the
polling location wearing a huge Dale Earnhardt racing jacket that came
over their hands and down to their knees!

Mike patiently waited for each woman to cast their vote, accepted their many thanks and then got back in line (I saved him a place while he was helping out the ladies). When Mike got back in line I asked him if he was an Obama supporter. He said that he was not, but that he couldn't stand to see those ladies so upset. I thanked him for being a gentleman in a time of bitter partisanship and wished him well.

After I voted I walked out to the street to find my mother's friends surrouding our new friend Mike — they were laughing and having a great time. I joined them and soon learned that Mike had changed his mind in the polling booth and ended up voting for Obama. When I asked him why he changed his mind at the last minute, he explained that while he was waiting for his jacket he got into a conversation with one of the ladies who had explained how the Jewish community, and she, had worked side by side with the black community during the civil rights movements of the '60s, and that this vote was the culmination of those personal and community efforts so many years ago. That this election
for her was more than just a vote ... but a chance at history.

Mike looked at me and said, "Obama's going to win, and I didn't want to tell my grandchildren some day that I had an opportunity to vote for the first black president, but I missed my chance at history and voted for the other guy."


As Carville was quoted on MSNBC, the GOP has not won an election since 1928 on a ticket w/o a NIXON or a BUSH!!!!!!

The election is already on w/ early voting. And the newly registered voters are making it to the polls.

when i ran for office, i learned it was more productive to register a new voter than to argue w/ a recalcitrant. And then the job wasn't complete until they voted. The ones that vote early are a blessing b/c they can be crossed off the list so you can concentrate on others .

Zogby,whorecently mirrored the Col. and thought that Obama had not yet closed the sale, now again mirrors the Col. and sees a potentiallandslide.

Politico site says as Wake Co. NC and a certain county in NV, so goes the country. From early voting it appears Wake County is Obama country.

It has been a while since we visited the presidential temperament Briggs Myerson theory/ Keirsy theory.

From a site analyzingpast elections



Guardian Supervisor





Artisan Performer





Artisan Performer





Guardian Protector





Artisan Performer





Artisan Performer





Artisan Promoter





Artisan Promoter



the artisan always beats the guardian or rational.

Slate recently pegged Obama as an Idealist.Dead Wrong. He is a rationalist with a strong pragmaticstreak, a catalyst/idealist w/ strong diplomatic intelligence and quite an artisan as shown by soaring rhetoric.
Briefly, he is quite a bag.


Colonel you noticed this:

http://www.ips.org/blog/jimlobe/?p=198>Jim Lobe: Top Obama Adviser Signs on to Roadmap to War with Iran

http://www.salon.com/opinion/greenwald/2008/10/23/iran/index.html>Glenn Greenwald: Bipartisanship and threats of war toward Iran

David W.

After the dirty tricks of 2000 and 2004, I am not resting easy at all right now, and hope that Obama's lead in the polls doesn't encourage people to stay at home, because they think it's in the bag.

We are seeing the vestiges of Karl Rove's 'permanent Republican majority' strategy in action, which involved politicizing the DOJ, US Attorneys, and state voting operation. A lesser gem amongst the many Orwellian laws passed by bush was the 'Help America Vote' Act, which was essentially a Trojan Horse for Rove's tactics. Fortunately, citizen outrage has forced the retreat of Diebold, Sequoia, etc. by showing how easily their machines can be hacked. Elsewhere, judges are striking down Republican efforts to disenfranchise voters, such as the recent denial of the Wisconsin US Attorney (and McCain state chair) to remove voters from the rolls.

As noted by William Cummings above, there appears to be a willing amnesia on both sides about 2000, and I think this unwillingness to look back is something the Rs bank on when they pull their tricks. Of course, they tend to mistake justice delayed as getting away with it, as we are finally seeing some convictions in the NH phone jamming scandal, but obstruction on the fact that it has been directly connected to the White House.

That said, I think the conventional wisdom about vote tampering is that it is only effective in the margins, when there is a close race such as 2000 and 2004, and a gap like we are seeing now is likely to be insurmountable via tampering. Mostly, i'm pleased tonight to hear Col. Lang's endorsement of VA's voting verity.


Palin will be lucky if she can become queen of Wasilla. Please don't use such a broad brush with the NW.


Asian stock crashed, and eastern european countries are now near defaulting. (The real global financial crisis is about to hit. nevermind few chump change in wall street.)

That $2.5Trillion bail out is all gone now.

This is about to turn from deep recession to a depression.


Col, yes, this is shaping up to be an Obama landslide. Take Obama's overwhelming election mandate to the next step, and wonder if it will usher in a political, economic and/or social movement or reawakening. His election comes at a time of economic crisis and a reevaluation of America's political power and wonder what shape and scope this movement will take - it is being written now.


The Democrats will hold both houses of Congress so strongly that they will be tempted to govern unwisely, pushing the country farther to the left than its nature will allow.

Assuming Obama wins, I doubt that we will see much of that, or even anything approaching, that until well into a second term. He'll have his hands tied up with three all-consuming issues; the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and the economy/recession/mortage mess, (Then there is always the unforseen). To try to do much more than that will really be a mistake -- that would be overreaching, though not in an ideological sense. It would muddle his first term, and result in failure.

Once those issues are resolves, healthcare looms. A chunk of of the second term will be consumed by crafting and passing legislation redifining government's role in providing/ensuring universal health care in the USA. Passing a good plan would do for Obama and the Dems what Social Security did for FDR and Co, ensure Dem majority status for at least a generation. (That's why the GOP and their allies in the insurance industry will fight this tooth and nail). As far as over-reaching to the left goes, at least on this issue anyway, I suspect we Americas are much closer to the Europeans than the CW allows. After all, we just witnessed the big bailout where circumstances trumped free market ideology with barely a whimper from the Lawrence Kudlows among us! That now makes single-payer a distinct possibility IMO.

I do think we'll see lots of smaller scale efforts in the Congress to do things like amend the bankruptcy bill, pass net neutrality, etc that are liberal AND popular.

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