Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Headlines - Tuesday

h/t my brother:
I considered whether or not to do this for a long time.  In the end, I decided that I'd e-mail each of you and ask you to possibly reconsider which Presidential candidate you'll vote for tomorrow.  I realize that some of you will not agree with me and that this e-mail may anger you.  Please know that I love my country as much or more than anyone.  My stomache, chest, and head hurt when I think of the things that have happened under the leadership of a Republican president who's made the office more powerful than ever.
In the last 8 years we've seen warrantless wiretapping, erosion of our civil liberties, presidential signing statements (in which the president specifically states that he's not going to abide by the law that he just signed), pulling out of the Kyoto Treaty, outright admission and approval of torture methods specifically criminalized in the Geneva Peace Accords, suspension of Habeus Corpus and holding people without charge or trial, war declaration against a country that posed no real direct threat, unheard of deficit spending (McCain, too, is a self-described fiscal conservative as was George Bush. Our national debt has almost doubled since Bush was elected), and unbridled corporate access to government the result of which was partially responsible for the financial disasters threatening our world economy.
The United States is not just a member of the world community-we are the defacto leader of the world.  We cannot act unilaterally as we wish and expect there to be no consequences.  There is one world and we are in it.  We need to be the leader of that world, and to do that we need the respect and admiration OF that world.  We need to send a message to the world that the behavior we have experienced in the past 8 years is unacceptable.  We need to send a strong, clear message that we intend to lead the world not by fear or intimidation, but with justice and compassion.  What America does impacts directly billions of others in the world, and because of that, we've got an obligation to consider them, too.  Two quick examples: the financial crisis-which was caused in large part by unbridled markets and greed here in the US-will undoubtedly lead to the deaths by disease and starvation of millions of people throughout the world.  We are at the top of the food chain and will continue to eat no matter what.  Much of Africa will not.  They do not vote for our president but they will die for our decisions.  And even a tiny amount of man-accelarated climate change will likely not substantially impact us in our lifetimes.  We have wealth and can afford to pay more for food and water.  But in places like central Africa, where life is tenuous at best, minor changes in climate can have a devastating effect on food production.  This will lead to wars for resources, ethnic cleansing, and devastation of animals and their habitats.  We have a moral imperative to consider the fates of others tomorrow.
Politicians have focused on issues which divide us rather than those which unite us.  These days, there are several main issues which divide us. The abortion debate, the right to keep and bear arms, and the rights of homosexuals directly impact only a small, small percentage of the population.  Yet we let them define and divide us as a people.  What does the president have to do with these issues anyway? George Bush campaigned on the issue of Roe V. Wade and had the backing of both the House and the Senate and yet he did nothing to address the issue during his presidency.  Why? Congress introduces legislation, not the president.  So when a candidate for the presidency tells us how they feel on a constitutional issue like these, that's all they're doing-telling us how they feel.  Congress introduces legislation and the supreme court rules on its legality.  Unless you're George Bush-then you just issue a presidential signing statement and do what you want ! :-)
I no longer support the two-party system in the United States.  And I do not think that Barack Obama is the best candidate that the Democratic party has offered up in recent memory.  But I strongly feel that he's the best candidate for change in this country.  I feel he's the best qualified candidate to unite this country.  I believe that what we need right now is a "Kennedy-esque" president who can talk directly to us, who can challenge us, who can ask us to give to our country in ways we've not been asked to give since my parents generation.  We need to work together to make America all she can be and I believe Barack will help that cause.
My dad (who lost a brother and a brother-in-law) in World War 2 told me that this isn't the country that he grew up in, that his family fought and died for.  He said that if he were younger he'd move to another country.  We need to change that and tomorrow is the time. 
Thank you for reading my manifesto. 
Obama takes midnight voters by storm: The first results are in for the 2008 general election, with the small village of Dixville Notch, New Hampshire again performing its tradition of having everyone turn out to vote at midnight and then immediately reporting the results. 
Obama 15; McCain 6.
And this is a place that has only voted Democratic once in the 50 years they've been doing this tradition.
He won Hart's Location, NH by a vote of 17-10, too.

We're off to a beautiful start, my darlings.


A senior vice president of CBS News, Paul Friedman, said the prospects for Barack Obama or John McCain meeting the minimum threshold of electoral votes could be clear as soon as 8 p.m. — before polls in even New York and Rhode Island close, let alone those in Texas and California. At such a moment, determined from a combination of polling data and samples of actual votes, the network could share its preliminary projection with viewers, Mr. Friedman said.
People, this is democratic malpractice, voter suppression. Senate and House races will be affected by this, as will the tally to defeat odious ballot initiatives like Prop Hate in California.

Don't fall for it! Whatever the preliminary results, whatever you hear, get to the polls and vote as if your single ballot could single-handedly decide Florida in 2000. Why? Because it's true.

Every single vote for Obama repudiates conservatism.
No matter how long the lines, no matter how the election is called before all the polls are closed, no matter what, vote.

Condolences to Barack Obama on the loss of his grandmother. I wish Toot could have hung on for one more day to see her grandson make history, and that he had a parent or grandparent alive to see the election returns come in tonight. 
Behold what the McCain-Palin wingnuts are saying on Free Republic:
  • They should do an ice test to see how long she's been in the freezer.
  • Better pull her absentee 'cuz she was dead on Election Day.
  • More from the compassionate conservatives: http://wonkette.com/404084/mccain-palin-wingnuts-mourn-obamas-granny#more-404084  

    And the heartless bastards from the California Republican Party filed an FEC complaint against Barack Obama yesterday for visiting his dying grandmother:

    "Obama for America violated federal law by converting its campaign funds to Senator Obama's personal use. Senator Obama recently traveled to Hawaii to visit his sick grandmother...Therefore, the Obama Campaign violated the FEC's ban on "personal use" of campaign funds when it paid over $100,000 for the Campaign's charter to fly to Hawaii without obtaining reimbursement from Senator Obama." 

    Brought to you by the party of family values.


    After you vote today, be sure to fill up your gas tank.  


    Now they tell us
    Saudi Arabia foiled a 2003 terror plot by militants who planned to hijack a plane and blow it up over a densely populated American city, a Saudi official said Sunday.

    The official said the plan, first reported Sunday in government-guided Al-Watan newspaper, was for the attackers to transit through the U.S. to another destination so they could avoid applying for hard-to-get American visas required for Saudis.
    The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the issue, said the militants were preparing to execute the alleged plot when it was halted.

    Fifteen of the 19 hijackers who attacked the United States on Sept. 11, 2001, were Saudis.
    Hoping for racism Link

    It was hard to believe he was actually saying it, but the words were really coming out of his mouth. Sen. Arlen Sphincter's that is, at an afternoon rally for John McCain in Philadelphia. Sphincter was talking about his "sense" that Election Day in his state was going to be a rude awakening for Democrats, despite weeks of polls showing Republicans lagging far behind in this former swing state. That's when he let loose with his reason for optimism:

    There are a "couple of hidden factors" in this election, said Sphincter. "The first is that people answer pollsters one way, but in the secrecy of the ballot booth, vote the other way." Yes. That is what he said, to a chorus of hopeful affirmation. Arlen Sphincter was openly - in public, into a microphone - crossing his fingers, and hoping for racism.



    Economic indicators suck: http://www.boomantribune.com/story/2008/11/3/155010/290


    They waited 'til the very end, but yesterday the Casper Star Tribune editorial board endorsed Barack Obama. Yeah, that's Wyoming - full of Mormons and right-wing fanatics cut off from "real" America. Obama will probably do under 40% there, but still be better than states like Utah (32%) and Idaho (29%), who are in their own world of make-believe and choose not to participate in a national day of cleansing tomorrow.

    Funny there's no mention of local-boy-made-bad, Dick Cheney in their endorsement. Who could blame them? He has an approval rating below Nixon's and just above venereal disease.


    No candy for tiny socialists

    I agree with this fine patriot. Trick or treaters should prove their ideological purity before getting a Tootsie Roll.


    The hateful Reverend Phelps of Westboro Baptist Church was a heck of a father. Some of his kids have escaped the hellish prison of WBC, and one, Nathan Phelps, has written about his upbringing. Religion was a tool of oppression, something to instill fear and allow an angry father to control his family, and to justify violence against them.



    Pharyngula: What's wrong with William Ayers?

    The latest sad twist is that he was invited to speak at a student research conference, and the craven University of Nebraska-Lincoln canceled the event under pressure from donors and politicians. The governor of the state called the invitation an "embarrassment" and said "Ayers is a well-known radical who should never have been invited to the University of Nebraska"; representatives and senators chimed in with similar sentiments; a regent called it "bad judgment"; donors to the university threatened to withhold further contributions. This is insane. Ayers hasn't committed a crime, and he's not a danger to society — this is a fellow who clearly has a deep commitment to improving society (perhaps, to Republican eyes, that is his crime).

    Has anybody thought to look at what Bill Ayers actually promotes? He has a website, and it's trivial to look up what he's advocating. For instance, here is a description of his book, Teaching Toward Freedom:  http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2008/11/whats_wrong_with_william_ayers.php


    One trait Schwarzenegger shares with George Bush is a sense of humor that relies heavily on locker-room towel-snapping:

    Schwarzenegger long has sponsored an annual bodybuilding competition in Columbus, and he joked that he hoped to invite Obama next time because "he needs to do something with those skinny legs."

    "We're going to make him do some squats, and then we're going to give him some biceps curls to beef up those scrawny little arms. But if you only could do something about putting some meat on his ideas," Schwarzenegger said.

    Yeah, that's real funny, Arnold, but this is funnier: 


    Good read from Paul Krugman today. He's predicting the Repugs will become even worse after their impending defeat.


    The accomplishments of George Bush: http://distributorcapny.blogspot.com/2008/11/accomplishments-of-george-w-bush.html


    John McCain Senior Moment Video Library: http://www.236.com/news/2008/11/02/236com_john_mccain_video_libra_1_9967.php


    Palin releases her version of medical records: a 2 page letter from her doctor. I'll let AP tell the story.


    Remember the Clinton Chronicles - the documentary that accused Bill Clinton of murdering his political opponents, engaging in drug running, and all kinds of other nefarious things that were largely either imaginary or fabricated? Scott Wheeler, the executive director of the National Republican Trust PAC gets the credit for putting it together. 

    Today, Murray Waas is reporting that Wheeler is also the person responsible for the last minute national television buy of those advertisements featuring the Rev. Jeremiah Wright. 

    Premium Image


    Contradicting the findings of the state Legislature's investigation, the Alaska State Personnel Board, whose members were appointed by Governor Sarah Palin, found that Governor Sarah Palin did nothing wrong in the "Troopergate" scandal.

    Of course, the AP 
    didn't bother to mention that Palin has the power to fire all of the board members.


    Last week, the NAACP filed a lawsuit, contending that Virginia is violating the U.S. and state constitutions by not providing enough voting machines, poll workers and polling places, particularly in precincts with large minority populations. The shortages could result in long lines and lost votes, the suit says.

    Yesterday, a federal judge refused to order any last-minute changes to Virginia's voting procedures.

    But U.S. District Judge Richard L. Williams will consider Tuesday a separate request by Republican presidential nominee John McCain to allow overseas absentee ballots an extra 10 days to arrive in Virginia.

    How very… thoughtful!


    Neoconservatard Bill Kristol is feeling all warm and fuzzy today: he's penned a rainbow-and-bluebird-enchanted column all about why liberals should be cheerful if McCain happens to win. No, really. And he hopes that, if when that doesn't happen, we will treat him and all other rethugs with the same consideration, sympathy, hugs and magic unicorn love they have shown us these many years:

    If Obama prevails, I'm confident there are some compassionate liberals out there who will do the same for hapless conservatives as they hobble out to the wilderness.

    That's hilarious. After eight years of taking it in the pooper from you guys as you rubbed our noses in it, we should be all sweetness and light, huh? Turn the other cheek. Forgive and forget. Well, guess again, assclown. If you turds don't manage to steal this one, we will be all raising our glasses that your sorry, lying, despicable asses lost. And that's just for starters. Then there's investigations. 


    Europe is thrilled by the prospect that whatever happens this week it will mean the end of George W. Bush, and enraptured by the sheer spectacle of it all.

    Woohoo!!!! We hear ya.

    Good riddance, monkeyboy.

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