I think the polls show him about 4 points down, but Jon Ralston says he'll pull it out. Which would be too bad, in my opinion. I think this, and the California Senate race (Barbara Boxer vs. Carly fiorina) are the two most interesting races in the country.
Harry Reid is the most resilient figure in Nevada political history. He should not even be here. He lost a U.S. Senate race in 1974, embarrassed himself in a mayoral race in 1975 and should have lost his re-election bid in 1998. But he found a way to win 12 years ago, and he will again Tuesday.
Pontiac, the brand that invented the muscle car under its flamboyant engineer John Z. DeLorean, helped Burt Reynolds elude Sheriff Justice in “Smokey and the Bandit” and taught baby boomers to salivate over horsepower, but produced mostly forgettable cars for their children, will endure a lonely death on Sunday after about 40 million in sales.
Of course, it is in Texas and he's a Texan.
How will he compare to President Obama's pitching?
Tens of thousands.
A diverse crowd of young white men.
A good column off The Daily Beast. in fact, it's a "cool" column.
I thought I had a friend of mine going to this - but she never got back to me - wanted a guest blog post from her.
Stewart's overt message is that those who embrace his Daily Show orthodoxy are part of a tribe that transcends the idiocies of our age, a tribe that is lucid, cool, and discerning—in a word, "sane." Joy Behar is, by this token, sane. Most Republicans, by definition, are not. As for Americans who espouse the Tea Party in any way: Why, they're overwrought, moonstruck psychos; in a word, insane.
This is an extraordinarily powerful essay, on the fathers of troops killed in Iraq and Afghanistan. It's written by a recent graduate of the Columbia Univ. School of Journalism, and was published in the June/July issue of First Things magazine. A fifteen or twenty minute read.
I tried to leave a comment - couldn't understand why no one else had. But, the anti-spam code can't be detected against the background!
Ahhh, the NY Times columnist, whose predictive ability give him a batting average of about .041, opining on the coming election -
This is going to be terrible. In fact, future historians will probably look back at the 2010 election as a catastrophe for America, one that condemned the nation to years of political chaos and economic weakness.
Based on his past prognostications, I'd say the Country's future is bright, bright, bright!!
The 32-year-old man said he felt forced to sample the food each day to ensure quality standards remained high, because McDonald's hired "mystery clients" to randomly visit restaurants and report on the food, service and cleanliness.
Data from the CBSNYT recent poll -
Lots of other interesting info if you hit the link.
The Massachusetts Senator, and 2004 presidential candidate.
"It's absurd. We've lost our minds," said a clearly exasperated Kerry. "We're in a period of know-nothingism in the country, where truth and science and facts don't weigh in. It's all short-order, lowest common denominator, cheap-seat politics."
Translation: If you disagree with Kerry, you're a dope.
Chad Lee (whoever he is. And how old is he? Looks like he just got out of high school).
Looks like he objects to the Congresswoman's ... chest ... I would think this ad might get her more votes!
Milbank, the Washington Post columnist and aggrieved liberal. There's a video embedded in the article.
Stewart, who struggled to suppress a laugh as Obama defended Summers, turned out to be an able inquisitor on behalf of aggrieved liberals. He spoke for the millions who had been led to believe that Obama was some sort of a messianic figure. Obama has only himself to blame for their letdown.
From my friend Theresa. Pretty funny.
Look where whack job Joy Behar scores. And Chris Matthews on "Hardball" has turned as mean and whacky as Olberman (I watch them while channel surfing when I'm in the gym in the evening), I guess in an effort to save his show ...
CABLE NEWS RACE
TUES. OCT. 26, 2010
FOXNEWS O'REILLY 3,734,000
FOXNEWS HANNITY 2,720,000
FOXNEWS GRETA 2,296,000
FOXNEWS BAIER 2,284,000
FOXNEWS SHEP 2,244,000
FOXNEWS BECK 2,154,000
MSNBC OLBERMANN 1,190,000
MSNBC MADDOW 1,087,000
MSNBC O'DONNELL 1,048,000
MSNBC SCHULTZ 724,000
CNNHN GRACE 670,000
MSNBC HARDBALL 628,000
CNN COOPER 591,000
CNN KING 560,000
CNNHN BEHAR 339,000
From CBSNYT poll -
The president has been traveling the country to stump for candidates ahead of the midterms, but it may not be much help: a majority of likely voters (56 percent) say Mr. Obama's support for a candidate has no impact on their vote. And while 14 percent say Mr. Obama's support makes them more likely to back a candidate, 29 percent say it makes then less likely to do so.
Congress continues to suffer from abysmal approval ratings: Just one in ten likely voters say they approve of the job Congress is doing, and four in five say most members should be replaced.
Fifty-two percent of likely voters say they are more enthusiastic about voting this year. But the enthusiasm gap persists: Sixty-three percent of Republicans are more enthusiastic compared to 43 percent of Democrats. Thirty-one percent overall are less enthusiastic about voting this year.
As for who's voting for whom:
- Men favor Republican candidates in their House vote this year by eight points, while the Republican edge is narrower among women.
- Likely voters under age 45 are divided in their vote for Congress, while older voters are more likely to vote for Republicans.
- 77% of liberals plan to vote Democratic, but they make up just about a fifth of likely voters this year. Moderates (35% of the electorate) also edge Democratic, but conservatives, who make up four in 10 likely voters, strongly favor Republican candidates.
- Six in 10 white evangelicals and eight in 10 Tea Party supporters favor Republican candidates.
- The coalitions that voted for Barack Obama and John McCain have mostly held together for this midterm election. 76% of 2008 Obama voters plan to vote Democratic in this election, while 82% of McCain voters plan to vote Republican.
I cannot remember when my family didn't get the Geographic Magazine. The problem is always - what to do with the old issues?
The Grosvenors, a storied Washington family and heirs to Alexander Graham Bell, will conclude 122 consecutive years of stewardship over the National Geographic Society at the end of the year when Gilbert M. Grosvenor retires as chairman of the board of trustees.
"It's time to go," said Grosvenor, reached at his farm near Warrenton. "I've done my thing. It's time for other people to have their turn. I don't think it's proper for an institution like the Geographic Society, which is tied to adventure, science and exploration, to have a chairman approaching 80 years of age."
National Geographic is best known for its inimitable yellow-bordered magazine, whose dramatic photographs -- thousands were shot for every one that was published -- brought the world's geography to generations of Americans.
From the 1950s through 1980s, National Geographic magazine -- along with Reader's Digest -- topped U.S. magazine circulation. The magazine's English language edition peaked at 10.8 million in 1989. But the media revolution that started in the 1990s with the expansion of cable television and the onset of the Internet created big challenges for Grosvenor.
The new chairman, John Fahey, is a graduate of Manhattan College.
As the first president of National Geographic Ventures, a wholly owned taxable subsidiary of the Society, he started the National Geographic cable channel, inaugurated the company's tour business, launched a Web channel and a school publishing business, and expanded the magazine into other countries and languages.
"Our economics have reoriented themselves toward cable television as the big driver," said Fahey. "The big challenge in front of us is the future digital world that is so ill-defined in terms of economics. Our ability to achieve the opportunities will be only limited by our imagination."
The new chairman credited the Grosvenor family for guiding the Society for more than a century. And he singled out his predecessor in particular.
"Gil has devoted his entire life to National Geographic," Fahey said. "His great passion is improving the geography literacy of young people in this country. And he has spent the last 20 years aggressively pursuing that goal and making wonderful progress."
October 27th, 1964. And no teleprompter. The speech that launched Reagan. Incredible how so many things have not changed - the numbers have just gotten bigger.
Sounds almost quaint now - The line "A Rendezvous with Destiny" is at the end.
Loved this -
No government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. Actually, a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we'll ever see on this Earth.
This was pointed out to me by my correspondent Bernadette. The youtuber who posted it is based in the United Arab Emirates.
Obama at 37% approval.
While the president is at a low point, there is a political body with ratings much lower than his. Just one in ten Americans (11%) give Congress positive ratings on the job they are doing while nine in ten (89%) give them negative marks. While Congress may be under Democratic control, even four in five Democrats (81%) give them negative ratings.
Yes! A sign of hope ...
... a new Washington Post canvass of hundreds of local tea party groups reveals a different sort of organization, one that is not so much a movement as a disparate band of vaguely connected gatherings that do surprisingly little to engage in the political process.
The results come from a months-long effort by The Post to contact every tea party group in the nation, an unprecedented attempt to understand the network of individuals and organizations at the heart of the nascent movement.
Seventy percent of the grass-roots groups said they have not participated in any political campaigning this year. As a whole, they have no official candidate slates, have not rallied behind any particular national leader, have little money on hand, and remain ambivalent about their goals and the political process in general.
This is actually less of a decline then in prior periods.
Go to Newspaper Circ Declines Lessen Again for all the interesting stats. Only two newspapers on the major list showed circulation increases; the Dallas Morning News (up .25%) and the WSJ (up 1.82%).
FULL DISCLOSURE: Besides reading the WSJ every day, I also read the NY Times and Washington Post online (free) editions. The fact that most major newspapers are available for free online (but not the WSJ) goes some way to explaining their circulation declines and bleak future prospects. No way they can make up lower paid circulation with online ad revenue.
Once a week NYT op ed'er Ross Douthat had an interesting column - much of which I don't agree with - yesterday.
it didn’t cost much if you accept that the ends of public policy justify the means. But of course it was the means of TARP, not its final impact on the country’s balance sheet, that made it so unpopular.
The bailout became law because the legislative branch was stampeded with the threats of certain doom. It vested unprecedented economic authority in a single unelected official, the secretary of the Treasury. And it used public funds to insulate well-connected private actors from the consequences of their recklessness. Its creation short-circuited republican self-government, and its execution created moral hazard on an epic scale. It may have been an economic necessity, but it felt like a travesty nonetheless.
Note: The term "moral hazard" as used above, means that an economic risk-taker knows, going into a deal, that he will receive the benefits of his action or investment if it works out, but any potential loss will be covered by the general public or taxpayers. For example, if you tell an investment bank that they can invest knowing they are "too big to fail" and will be bailed out if things go bad, they have little incentive to do anything but aggressively invest, aiming to maximize their return, without concern for the risks.
This is why it should be possible to both sympathize with the politicians who voted for the bailout and welcome their rebuke at the ballot box. Faced with extraordinary circumstances — wars, natural disasters, economic crises — political leaders will always incline toward a blunt utilitarianism, in which the need for stability trumps more high-minded ideals. But after a crisis has passed, it’s immensely important that the ideals reassert themselves, so that the moral compromises made amid extraordinary times aren’t repeated in ordinary ones as well.
I don't agree with some of the comparisons made later in the column; hit the link forthe whole thing.
As per this NY Times article. And I'm sure that's correct - many independent voters who will vote Republican this time around like divided government and are likely to vote for the prez in 2012.
“The best possible result for Obama politically is for the Republicans to gain control of both houses,” said Douglas E. Schoen, a Democratic pollster and strategist who helped President Bill Clinton recover from his own midterm Congressional defeat in 1994 to win re-election two years later. “That’s what Obama should want.”
This was sent to me by my friend Bernadette. It really contains quite a lot of information in a convenient format. There's a ten minute presentation showing the history of the United States westward expansion.
Good for basic information about the 50 states also. Take a look!
Tea Party of course - I love this -
Here's a nice play by Tim in yesterday's (Friday) football game against White Plains. Ossining on defense on the right of the picture and Tim playing defensive guard - right in the middle. On fourth down, he runs down the quarterback, flings him around, and the ball goes free. You'll have to watch closely - he catches the QB on the left hand side of the screen. Ossining lost to White Plains, 16-28 - but a good display against a team playing at home with a much bigger playing squad.
Tim's comment on seeing the video: "you need a better camera."
Another fine essay, well worth reading the whole thing. Takes all of five minutes.
And they not only freed the Washington establishment, they woke it up. That establishment, composed largely of 50- to 75-year-olds who came to Washington during the Reagan era in a great rush of idealism, in many cases stayed on, as they say, not to do good but to do well. They populated a conservative infrastructure that barely existed when Reagan was coming up: the think tanks and PR groups, the media outlets and governmental organizations. They did not do what conservatives are supposed to do, which is finish their patriotic work and go home, taking the knowledge and sophistication derived from Washington and applying it to local problems. (This accounts in part for the esteem in which former Bush budget chief and current Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels is held. He went home.)
In short, Mr. Williams was attempting to do exactly what a responsible commentator should do: speak honestly without being inflammatory. His reward was to lose his job, just as Agriculture Department employee Shirley Sherrod lost hers over purportedly racist remarks that turned out to be anything but. NPR management appears to have learned nothing from that rush to judgment. "Political correctness can lead to some kind of paralysis where you don't address reality," Mr. Williams told Mr. O'Reilly. NPR, alas, has proved his point.
Right. And they say Palin is an idiot.
The British economist John Maynard Keynes may live on in popular legend as the world’s most influential economist. But in much of Europe, and most acutely here in the land of his birth, his view that deficit spending by governments is crucial to avoiding a long recession has lately been willfully ignored.
Kurtz has left his position with the Washington Post and now is the Washington bureau chief for the website "The Daily Beast". Still has his weekend CNN gig.
Hit the link for the whole story.
After watching Bill O’Reilly lead an hour of NPR-bashing on Fox News Thursday night, it’s tempting to say that the right’s reaction to the Juan Williams firing is just a tad overblown.
But it’s not. This was a blunder of enormous proportions. Even many liberals—Donna Brazile, Joan Walsh, Whoopi Goldberg—are castigating National Public Radio for throwing Williams overboard.
NPR Chief Executive Vivian Schiller—dubbed a “pinhead” by O’Reilly—made matters worse by suggesting that Williams needs psychiatric attention. She later apologized.
And in a triumph of awful timing, yesterday was the day that NPR announced a new grant—$1.8 million from liberal philanthropist George Soros to hire 100 new reporters. No news organization should accept that kind of check from a committed ideologue of any stripe. Even if every journalist hired with the cash from Soros’ foundation is fair and balanced, to coin a phrase, the perception is terrible. (This New York Times story didn’t even mention Soros’ liberal views. The guy just gave a million bucks to Media Matters. Hello?) Oh, and NPR is in the midst of a fundraising drive. Good luck with that.
My bet - millions. He certainly was not in violation of his contract.
WSJ editorial this AM - NPR Finally Gets Its Man
To fire someone because he said, even on television, that seeing passengers in Muslim garb on an airplane made him "nervous" would be preposterous. This is "bigotry"? Especially in that Mr. Williams then told Mr. Reilly it would be wrong to call all Muslims "extremists" because some are terrorists, just as Timothy McVeigh's murders do not indict all Christians.
No, as Ms. Schiller made clear in her memo to Mr. Williams's former colleagues at NPR, "this isn't the first time we have had serious concerns about some of Juan's public comments."
Mr. Williams has been sacked from NPR for engaging in a patter of . . . opinion. This, Ms. Schiller, noted is a "critical distinction" because of NPR's "ethics code" that its "analysts" not participate in shows "that encourage punditry and speculation rather than fact-based analysis."
Translation from the Orwellian: They finally found a way to get rid of Juan Williams.
It has long been one of the most open secrets in the world of punditry (which needless to say, includes NPR's "analysts"), that NPR's progressive political base was unhappy with Mr. Williams's appearances on Fox as existentially incompatible with their worldview.
Meanwhile, Cokie Roberts, another longtime NPR analyst, sat for years on ABC's Sunday morning talk show, cheerfully expressing moderately left-of-center opinions more or less in the same ballpark as most of those offered by Mr. Williams. And Nina Totenberg, NPR's Supreme Court reporter, has long offered left-wing opinion on the show "Inside Washington," not to mention in her own reporting.
Here's the NPR CEO - she later apologized for the crack about how Williams should see a psychiatrist.
I almost never listen to NPR. But I have heard Juan Williams many times on FOX. He's a reasonable and fair-minded Liberal.
NPR firing him for the following comment is preposterous and just proves how uber-politically correct they are.
Here's what he said after being fired.
Here's the report, from Bloomberg. Google 2.4% Rate Shows How $60 Billion Lost to Tax Loopholes
So I did a quick search - took three minutes - to find out who google donated to in the last presidential political cycle -
Obama - $803,436.
McCain - $20,800
Go here for the data, which is easily available on numerous websites.
... despite its status as a Fortune 500 company, Google is among a growing group of powerful corporations closely aligned with the left. Based on my estimates, Google’s employees are the fourth most liberal of any U.S. corporation, behind Genentech, Apple Inc. and Starbucks (See figure above or click here to view in table format). A table with the To put this in perspective, consider that during the 2008 election cycle, Google employees raised $20,800 for John McCain and $55,451 for Ron Paul; compared to $89,300 for Hillary Clinton and an astounding $803,436 for Barack Obama. In fact, in terms of political contributions, the employees at these firms more closely resemble faculty at liberal universities than traditional Fortune 500 corporations.
John Ellis is an interesting guy with an interesting blog. I've been reading it for several years - was probably steered to it by another werblog ...
Anyway, he has a VERY worthwhile posting dated October 19th - you may have to scroll to it after you hit the link. Total length is 13 paragraphs.
The question on the table is: are these times normal? Or is something much more profound and much more unsettling going on? If you believe that the new normal is not normal at all, as I do, then "normal" narratives no longer apply.
What might be an alternative story line? One answer would be: increased volatility. A darker answer might be: political instability and unrest.
As a nation, we are struggling with overwhelming debt at every level of governance and across a vast swath of the electorate. There are at least (at the very least) 15 states and countless municipalities that are functionally bankrupt. The states that are bankrupt, by any real accounting, include New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Illinois, California, Nevada, Arizona, Colorado, Ohio, Wisconsin, Louisiana, Missouri, Oregon, Washington and Michigan. They can't (literally can not) meet their pension obligations. They won't be able to pay for their ever-rising health care costs. Education costs are eating up too much money (although this will abate somewhat as the echo boom generation matriculates) and virtually every state (and municipality) has huge bond obligations, the proceeds from which papered over previous shortfalls. Oh, and one other thing, the economies in all of those states are stagnant, at best.
Once the last infusions of stimulus money run dry, what remains is a vast desert of debt. The idea that an over-leveraged electorate can be called upon to make up the shortfall is a non-starter. They can't pay down their own debt and municipal debt and state debt and federal debt. The math simply doesn't work. They end up with no take home pay.
This is the real avalanche that is about to hit American democracy. The avalanche in two weeks results in Nancy Pelosi no longer being the Speaker of the House. The avalanche of debt that hits beginning in 2011 and keeps on coming will shake our political system to its foundation. That's the avalanche that matters.
President Obama can either get ahead of this avalanche by proposing a vast restructuring of government debt and obligations while aggressively promoting a venture-based economic growth agenda or he can be consumed by the rubble. The same holds true for the next Republican presidential nominee. He or she needs to be ahead of the avalanche to survive its inevitable onslaught.
Right on (Unfortunately - and it's a waste of time to sit around trying to place the blame). At this stage, I can't see any way to stop the avalanche.
Here's Dowd from Sunday. Maureen Dowd goes on the attack - against (Republican) women
And this today.
Marilyn Monroe was very smart. Sarah Palin is very dumb. Blah, blah blah.
On Saturday, at a G.O.P. rally in Anaheim, Calif., Palin mockingly noted that you won’t find her invoking Mao or Saul Alinsky. She says she believes in American exceptionalism. But when it comes to the people running the country, exceptionalism is suspect; leaders should be — as Palin, O’Donnell and Angle keep saying — just like you.
In Marilyn’s America, there were aspirations. The studios tackled literary novels rather than one-liners like “He’s Just Not That Into You” and navel-gazing drivel like “Eat Pray Love.” Walt Disney’s “Fantasia” paired cartoon characters with famous composers. Even Bugs Bunny did Wagner.
Huh? Read the whole column and let me know what she's talking about.
The new coalition government -
This BBC article is very comprehensive.
He told MPs: "Today is the day when Britain steps back from the brink, when we confront the bills from a decade of debt.
"It is a hard road, but it leads to a better future."
And the NY Times had an article on the cuts to the British military -
In a bid to streamline its armed forces and help reduce its daunting levels of national debt, the British government on Tuesday announced plans to cut its military personnel by 10 percent, scrap 40 percent of the army’s artillery and tanks, withdraw all of its troops from Germany within 10 years, and cut 25,000 civilian jobs in its Defense Ministry.
All very sensible. We'll be going down this road soon.
From the NY Times. Even the Times realizes that too few young people and too many aging people (like me) spells trouble.
For the first time in human history, people aged 65 and over are about to outnumber children under 5. In many countries, older people entitled to government-funded pensions, health services and long-term care will soon outnumber the work force whose taxes help finance those benefits. This demographic shift also means that the number of people living with dementia, whose treatment is estimated to cost $604 billion worldwide this year, is expected to more than triple, to 115 million, by 2050, according to a report this year by Alzheimer’s Disease International, a group representing 73 Alzheimer’s associations around the world.
No other force is as likely to shape the future of national economic health, public finances and national policies, according to a new analysis on global aging from Standard & Poor’s, as the “irreversible rate at which the population is growing older.”
How are the most developed countries handling preparations for the boom in the elderly population — and for the budget-busting expenditures that are sure to follow?
For a majority, not very well.
Unless governments enact sweeping changes to age-related public spending, sovereign debt could become unsustainable, rivaling levels seen during cataclysms like the Great Depression and World War II, according to the S.& P. report.
However, not everybody believes this is a problem. The very left wing - and somewht influential - Center for Economic and Policy Review (CEPR) criticizes the report because it is from Standard & Poors - Organization That Could Not See $8 Trillion Housing Bubble Warns About Aging Population . But their critique is BS, as they pretend the ONLY demographic issue is paying for medicare!
From the NY Times health section. Not particularly helpful, but mildly amusing.
Centenarians alive today are older than the Titanic, crossword puzzles and Mickey Mouse. They have lived through 19 presidencies and two world wars. They saw the rise of motion pictures and radio, followed by the invention of television.
Pretty amusing article - and very true.
Perhaps no man in any profession has ever made such a public and indisputable case for his future salary - and done it at such an astronomical and demoralizing cost to his future employer.
The Rangers' lefty, who's become the King of October the last two seasons, beat the Bombers, 8-0, with eight brilliant two-hit innings of 13-strikeout majesty as Texas took a 2-1 lead in the American League Championship Series.
What Roy Halladay and Tim Lincecum couldn't deliver in their Saturday duel in Philadelphia, Lee placed on glorious display in the packed but almost silent Big Ballpark in the Bronx. Lee, who held a 2-0 lead from the first inning through the eighth, until the Rangers exploded for sixth runs in the ninth and left Yankee Stadium almost 90 percent empty.
Afterward, Rangers President Nolan Ryan was asked how much it would cost to re-sign Lee this winter. "Go across the hall and ask them," Ryan said. "I think he got their attention."