Please God, make it stop. I wrote better speeches in jr high school. I just can’t take it anymore.
McCain’s speech brought tears to my eyes… but then, my eyes always tear up when I yawn.
Seattle Times chief political reporter David Postman is leaving the paper, and journalism, to take a “media relations” job with Paul Allen’s Vulcan, Inc. Huh. With so many journalists leaving the industry to take media relations jobs, pretty soon there won’t be any media left to have relations with.
Postman says he’ll have more on this later, and so will I, but as I mentioned on last night’s podcast I find the relatively sudden implosion of our state’s political media to be depressing and distressing. Postman should have been in Denver and St. Paul covering the conventions, instead of sitting at home blogging on the bloggers and sending out his resume. I’m not sure how the Times thinks it can stem its steadily declining revenues by producing less and less quality, original content… but they seem intent on trying.
Anyway, Postman may not believe it but I’ve always respected him and always thought he was one of the best in the business. (His editorial board, not so much.) He’ll be missed.
Democrats Work is holding a day of service this Saturday, September 6, and there’s plenty of opportunity around the state to help chip in:
Effective politics is about a lot more than just waving signs and insulting your opponents; it’s about building community. And Democrats Work is a great way to involved.
Let’s be honest, when Republicans like Sarah Palin accuse Barack Obama of being an “elitist,” they’re really calling him “uppity.” (As opposed to when they call Jews like me “elitist.” Then they’re just calling me, um, a Jew.)
So you gotta at least applaud Rep. Lynn Westmoreland (R-GA) for his honesty:
“Just from what little I’ve seen of her and Mr. Obama, Sen. Obama, they’re a member of an elitist-class individual that thinks that they’re uppity,” Westmoreland said.
Asked to clarify that he used the word “uppity,” Westmoreland said, “Uppity, yeah.”
Yeah, Westmoreland knew the word “uppity” was racially tinged, and he intended to use it in that context. Because… well… that’s how Republicans win elections.
Postman follows up on a PolitickerWA report from the Republican convention, noting Attorney General Rob McKenna’s bold prediction that Dino Rossi is dead in the water if John McCain loses Washinton state by double digits. But I think the more interesting McKenna comments came earlier in the piece.
Speaking at a WA delegation breakfast, McKenna noted the many buttons he’d seen cheering the selection of Justices Samuel Alito and John Roberts to the Supreme Court, calling the buttons “absolutely right”.
“He made two outstanding picks,” McKenna said of the president, “and it makes an enormous difference.”
The difference he referred to was the court’s typical 5-4 split with the alternating ideology of Justice Anthony Kennedy. The attorney general predicted that Justice John Paul Stevens, at age 87, was very likely to leave the court during the next president’s tenure
“You get another Alito-Roberts type in there, that ain’t gonna happen anymore”, he said of Justice Stevens’ typically liberal vote and Justice Kennedy’s swing vote altering the Court’s opinion between liberal and conservative decisions.
“In contrast, think of who Barack Obama is likely to appoint of the Supreme Court,” McKenna proposed, and when the crowd scoffed he answered, “Enough said.”
“Enough said,” indeed.
McKenna is often depicted by our local press as a moderate, even pro-choice Republican, but his comments before friendly crowds indicate that he is anything but. A McCain/Palin victory would install in the White House the most anti-choice administration in the post-Roe era… an administration intent on making abortion illegal, even in the event of rape or incest, and regardless of the health of the mother. And this is exactly what McKenna is promoting when he celebrates the appointments of Roberts and Alito.
This is in fact the platform of the Washington State Republican Party, and it is the position supported by Dino Rossi, Dave Reichert, Cathy-McMorris Rodgers and Doc Hastings. Our state Republican Party and their leaders want to outlaw abortion, under nearly any circumstance, restrict access to birth control, and teach abstinence-only sex education in our schools (which has worked out so well for Bristol Palin). They want to return us to the era of coathangers, knitting needles and back-alley abortions… yet our local press continues to let them slide away by saying “I’m not running on that issue.”
Of course they’re not running on that issue. They’re position is both immoral, and counter to the opinion of the majority of voters in Washington state.
The elevation of of Sarah Palin to the national ticket was a blatant and cynical appeal to the GOP’s right-wing fundamentalist base, and as such it is incumbent on the press to start asking the tough questions of all Republican candidates, up and down the ticket.
McKenna, to has credit, was absolutely honest with the WA delegation in St. Paul: what is at stake here is the composition of the US Supreme Court for decades to come, and whether it will allow our nation’s Christianist minority to interfere with the most personal decisions a family has to make.
Now it is time for McKenna and his fellow Republicans to be just as honest with voters back at home.
I watched Rudy Giuliani’s speech from last night here. I’ve been closely following the growth of the gaping chasm between how Republicans view this country and the reality of what actually happens in this country, but I was still taken aback by the fact that Giuliani chose to belittle Obama’s experience as a community organizer. As the mayor of a major city, you’d have to think that Giuliani would understand what community organizers do and how valuable they can be. Not only that, but also to recognize that for someone with a Harvard law degree to decide to do something like that is a significant sacrifice. Even worse, the crowd at the RNC laughed derisively at this as if Obama’s choice to follow this path somehow reflects poorly on his character or his ability to lead the nation.
Roland Martin nails the point here:
This convention is already starting to expose the major problem the Republicans are facing this year. The kinds of things that rally their base really turn off the independents who might otherwise consider voting for McCain. It’s not just Sarah Palin, although her nomination is certainly an indication of this dynamic, but much of the party leadership itself. They don’t get it, and large numbers of current Republicans know it too.
Goldy and panel ponder the important questions of our time: Was the Sarah Palin choice crazy or simply reckless? (And should the words “Palin” and “choice” ever appear together in the same sentence?) Will the Republicans get any real mileage out of the flip-floppin’, tax-increasin’, book banin’, enemy firin’, ear markin’ half-term Governor? Where was the Seattle media at the Democratic National Convention? And why was The Big Tent such a spectacle? Did anybody show up for the Republican National Convention and, if so, who will be the target of their anger frenzy this year? Is Joe Lieberman a traitor? And why are Washington state Republicans shunning their own Convention?
Goldy was joined by Seattle P-I columnist Joel Connelly, Executive Director of the Northwest Progressive Institute Andrew Villeneuve , HorsesAss and EFFin’ Unsound’s Carl Ballard and HorsesAss, EFFin’ Unsound, and Blog Reload’s Lee.
The show is 48:07, and is available here as an MP3:[audio:http://www.podcastingliberally.com/podcasts/podcasting_liberally_sep_2_2008.mp3]
Danny Westneat is smitten with Sarah Palin…
I liked her — despite all the tiresome culture-war derision she aimed at “elites.”
Too bad she hates you, Danny, and the rest of us Ivy League elitists, so good luck getting that interview you’re lusting after.
Who knew a Harvard degree would someday become a political liability? I better send my daughter to the University of Idaho—or better yet, a two-year, unacredited Christian college—if I ever want her to have a career in politics.
Dear Gov. Palin,
Congratulations on your performance tonight. You were comfortable, composed, and deft with the zingers, and there’s no question you’re easy on the eyes (you know, for a 44-year-old woman.) Still, I’m guessing I’m not the only American who was hoping you might talk a little more substantively about your passionate stance on the issues. You know, like reproductive rights.
You see, my daughter started middle school this week (an event I apparently found a lot more traumatic than she did) and with my only child on the verge of adolescence, my parental anxieties have started to fixate on dark thoughts of the inevitability of (ugh) boys. I know what boys are like. I was one once. And thus, I hope my daughter stays away from them as long as possible.
But she won’t forever, and so in addition to what we teach her at home, I want my daughter to receive a medically accurate sex education at school. And while I sure hope she abstains until she’s away at college (where thankfully, I’ll never know about it), if, like the majority of teenagers, she does decide to become sexually active, I want her to have convenient access to effective birth control, emergency contraception, and God forbid, even the opportunity to safely terminate a pregnancy, should she so choose.
Now, I know that you believe that every human life is sacred from the very moment of conception, and I respect your beliefs, but as a fellow parent I would hope that you would respect my belief that arrogant theocrats like you should stay the fuck out of our schools, and out of the private life of my child with your abstinence-only, Christianist voodoo. Perhaps keeping the baby and marrying her beer-swigging dickweed of a boyfriend is the right choice for your 17-year-old daughter—who am I to question her decision? But I don’t want my daughter to ever have to make that awful choice.
The very thought of some (ugh) boy despoiling my beautiful little girl cuts me like a knife through the heart, but I’m realistic enough to know that it’s eventually going to happen, so when it does I want to be damn sure that there is plenty of sturdy, cold latex encasing his undeserving cock. (And I hope it greatly diminishes his pleasure.) You may consider my permissive attitude indicative of the moral decline of the secular left, but then, how’s all your sexual moralizing working out for you and your family, huh?
Best of luck on the rest of your campaign; I hope you enjoy explaining to American voters why you vehemently oppose legal abortion, even in the event of rape or incest, or to save the life of the mother.
I love humor. It’s what separates us from plankton and other single cell organisms, like multilevel marketing mavens and that guy on the cell phone standing in front of the lettuce talking about getting his car detailed.
So I heard this joke. Well, actually, I read it, but it’s still funny. It is attributed to some guy named Rev. John Hagee, apparently a supporter of Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona. It goes like this:
Do you know the difference between a woman with PMS and a snarling Doberman pinscher? The answer is lipstick.
It’s an old joke but a good one. Not as good as “a nearsighted turtle in love with an Army helmet,” but close. Of course, as generations of Vaudevillians and Catskills performers found out, joke theft can be a problem.
Take my wife, please. To the ballot box.
John McCain’s campaign threatened legal action against the National Enquirer today for running a story about McCain’s running mate, Sarah Palin, allegedly having an affair with her husband’s business partner.
“The smearing of the Palin family must end. The allegations contained on the cover of the National Enquirer insinuating that Gov. Palin had an extramarital affair are categorically false. It is a vicious lie,” said McCain senior adviser Steve Schmidt.
“The efforts of the media and tabloids to destroy this fine and accomplished public servant are a disgrace. The American people will reject it.”
Yeah… well… maybe. The National Enquirer is a tawdry, supermarket rag with low standards, and I wouldn’t trust them as far as I could spit. But they do occasionally break stories, as liberal-hater Jonah Goldberg ironically reminded us during the early days of the Edwards love-child story…
Also, it’s worth pointing out that while the Enquirer may or may not be scrupulous in its choice of stories — that’s in the eye of the beholder — it is pretty scrupulous about its facts. They win lawsuits. They’ve broken a host of stories the MSM guys couldn’t.
So if the Enquirer is scrupulous enough for right wingers when they’re tearing down Democrats…?
On the other hand, Karl Rove can be a crafty fucker, and it wouldn’t surprise me if the R’s seeded the Enquirer with a false scandal, so that when it blows up it discredits all the real scandals too. We’ll see.
The overwhelming majority of my fellow Jewish Americans are Americans first, and Jews second. But not all. And apparently not Sen. Joe Lieberman.
For at the heart of Sen. Lieberman’s split with the Democratic Party, and his embrace of Sen. John McCain last night at the Republican convention, there is a single issue: the war in Iraq. And regardless of what he may tell others (or even himself), Sen. Lieberman’s passion for maintaining a US military presence in Iraq, and indeed expanding it throughout the Middle East, is predicated on one and only one goal: assuring the survival of Israel.
It is a goal that I share with Sen. Lieberman, as do a majority of our fellow Americans, Jewish or not, but it is a goal that cannot and should not comprise the centerpiece of US foreign policy, and that can never be achieved through the brutal application of American military force. Every Arab killed by an American or Israeli soldier—every house destroyed, every life left in tatters—makes it that much harder for Israel to achieve a permanent peace with her Arab neighbors, and makes the world that much more dangerous for Jews everywhere. Every threat the US makes against the sovereignty of an Islamic nation is understood on the Islamic streets as a threat made on behalf of “the Jewish state”… and in the case of Sen. Lieberman I’m afraid, that impression would be largely correct.
I’ve only had the opportunity to meet Sen. Lieberman briefly, and while I cannot say that I know him well, he seemed immediately familiar. He and I come from the same East Coast Jewish milieu, where he could have been the father of a childhood friend, or a distant uncle on the Connecticut side of my extended family. No, I cannot say that I know Joe Lieberman personally, but I’ve known many Joe Liebermans throughout my life, in Philadelphia and New York, on the beaches of the Jersey Shore, at the Florida retirement community where I visit my mother every February… even here in Seattle, where the familiar Ashkenazi Jew is almost as hard to come by as a good bagel.
These are my people, and I know what makes them tick. We are the post-Holocaust generation, a generation in which survivors guilt and the very real experience of genocidal anti-semitism drives even the most secular amongst us to recognize the absolute necessity of a Jewish homeland. It is this intimate knowledge of both ancient and modern history that drives even the most liberal, Jewish American bleeding hearts to sustain unwavering support for the state of Israel, even when we find ourselves genuinely outraged and disgusted by the policies of the Israeli government itself.
Likewise, Sen. Lieberman’s unwavering support for Israel, as misguided as his policies might be, is entirely understandable to a fellow Jew like me. But as a fellow American I find it an entirely inappropriate platform on which to prioritize the agenda of a US Senator.
Yes, Sen. Lieberman has betrayed the Democratic Party (for whatever that’s worth), but I believe that in embracing Sen. McCain and his belligerent hundred years war—in standing on the floor of the Republican convention and endorsing the pro-war Republican ticket for president—Sen. Lieberman has also betrayed the American people and his solemn oath to “defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic … without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion…” I believe that Sen. Lieberman’s Israel-first AIPAC agenda has clouded his judgment (as it has that of many other old, Jewish men), driving him into the arms of a Republican party with which he is at odds on almost every other substantive policy issue.
And I believe that it is time for other American Jews to stand up and acknowledge Sen. Lieberman for what he is.
It’s been a while since our all-time favorite troll, Scott St. Clair (AKA The Crackpiper) has given me some good material for a post, but he’s been writing columns now at places like Crosscut and the Kirkland Reporter, and his insane and nonsensical ramblings have once again caught my eye. Here’s a recap of two of his latest efforts in unintentional comedy.