Politics

November 03, 2008

24 Hours Of Fox News
12:00 AM

With precious little time remaining until the election, last week I sat down to watch as much Fox News as I reasonably could over a 24-hour period. As one might expect with Barack Obama so close to the presidency, the channel is in full nuclear meltdown mode; I was afraid the stench of desperation would waft out of the television set and into my studio apartment. Fox is going ballistic for good reason: These days, absolutely nothing is going right--in both declensions of the word.

Today's Polls: All Signs Point Toward Obama Victory
12:00 AM

With fewer than six hours until voting begins in Dixville Notch, New Hampshire, the national polling picture has cleared up considerably. Barack Obama is on the verge of a victory, perhaps a decisive victory, in the race for the White House.The national polls have all consolidated into a range of roughly Obama +7. That is right about where our model sees the race as well, giving Obama a 6.8 point advantage in its composite of state and national polling.

Why Palin's Policies Won't Help Special-needs Kids
12:00 AM

Harold Pollack is a public health policy researcher at The University of Chicago's School of Social Service Administration, where he is faculty chair of the Center for Health Administration Studies. Today's New York Times contains a poignant article, "In Palin, Families of Disabled Children See a Potential White House Friend." With her infant son's diagnosis of Down Syndrome, Governor Palin has joined a community of caregivers that crosses every social boundary. My wife Veronica and I belong to that same community.

The Race Could Drag On, Unresolved, Into December
12:00 AM

No, not the prez race. But it looks like Georgia's hard-fought Senate contest -- the outcome of which could decide whether or not the Democrats get to 60 votes in the upper chamber -- may well go to a December 2 runoff: Georgia requires that a candidate receive a simple majority of votes to take office; polls show GOP incumbent Saxby Chambliss and his Democratic challenger running neck-and-neck, with a Libertarian candidate winning a big enough chunk of the vote to keep both major-party candidates under 50 percent.

November 02, 2008

Democratic Gay-baiting? You Don't Say...
12:00 AM

Here is a radio advertisement running right now in Kentucky, paid for by the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees. AFSCME is one of the largest unions in America and a major Democratic Party ally, and stands to gain much from the public trough should the Democrats take the White House and increase their majorities in Congress substantially. The ad quite clearly raises the allegation that Mitch McConnell was discharged from the military for homosexual conduct some 40 years ago. AFSCME thinks this is very important for the voters of Kentucky to understand.

Delighted?
12:00 AM

I have to pronouce myself less than delighted with the Obama campaign's new "Delighted" ad. The endorsement of the most loathed vice president in the history of democracy, of course, represents a boon to the Democrats. But, like a hitter watching a fat, slow pitch come over the plate, they've used the opportunity to take an undisciplined whack at John McCain, tittering about Cheney's endorsement and McCain's 90 percent record of voting with the administration but failing to use the chance to remined voters why the endorsement is so objectionable.

November 01, 2008

McCain First, Second, And Always
12:00 AM

One day in early March 1986, John McCain, an Arizona congressman, sat down to write a letter. McCain had heard that a long-time friend and donor, Charles Keating, was upset for being listed as a member of McCain’s campaign finance committee when a more prominent position would seem more appropriate. So McCain apologized. Needlessly it turned out, for "Charlie," as he signed his letter, would reply a few days later: “John, don’t be silly.

Fantasy League
12:00 AM

There is a line of thought in international affairs, the democratic peace theory, which suggests democracies never go to war with one another.If you consider only those democracies that are well-established and grant individual rights to their citizens (that is, if you ignore cases like Weimar Germany ), the hypothesis stands up pretty well to historical scrutiny. A corollary of this theory--the idea that if there are more democracies in the world, the U.S. will be safer--was one pillar of the neocon logic that propelled the war in Iraq.

Nader Is Self-absorbed
12:00 AM

Al Gore is in Florida campaigning among huge crowds for Barack Obama. Many Floridians feel a certain guilt that their state political apparatus was so under the control of Bush operatives that ballot and  ballot-counting theft were all but impossible to restrain. Then, of course, there was the Supreme Court, the highest judicial equivalent of a hanging jury...and a hanging jury not just for Gore but for the American people. Gore long has escaped his sentence and in a quite majestic way. The American people haven't done as well.

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