Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Obama's idea of 'early childhood education'

Barack Obama socialism indoctrination camps already in business. Can you imagine if George W. Bush tried to pull this stunt in 2000?

UPDATE: The video has been pulled. I'll try to find another version.

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No debate: Ifill not impartial moderator

Michelle Malkin exposes that Thursday night's debate moderator, Gwen Ifill of PBS, has a pro-Obama book coming out in January. And she just penned a puff piece on the Obamas in Essence Magazine. And her reporting on Sarah Palin at the Republican National Convention was clearly derisive, drawing many complaints.

In other words, how in the heck did she get picked as a non-partial moderator?

In an imaginary world where liberal journalists are held to the same standards as everyone else, Ifill would be required to make a full disclosure at the start of the debate. She would be required to turn to the cameras and tell the national audience that she has a book coming out on January 20, 2009 – a date that just happens to coincide with the inauguration of the next president of the United States. The title of Ifill's book? "Breakthrough: Politics and Race in the Age of Obama." Nonpartisan my foot.

Malkin makes a convincing case. Read it all. And watch the embedded video.

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Peter Fitzgerald's Boomtown

My ex-boss, former U.S. Senator Peter Fitzgerald, always seems to be one step ahead of everyone. His new bank in suburban Washington D.C. is booming in the midst of a financial meltdown.

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Monday, September 29, 2008

MSM in Alaska dumpsters, leaves 'O' alone

Stunning—and sad—quote from a MSM (D-Obama) newsroom. The tank for Obama is so full reporters are just jumping into Lake Michigan.

Off the record, every suspicion you have about MSM being in the tank for O is true. We have a team of 4 people going thru dumpsters in Alaska and 4 in arizona. Not a single one looking into Acorn, Ayers or Freddiemae. Editor refuses to publish anything that would jeopardize election for O, and betting you dollars to donuts same is true at NYT, others. People cheer when CNN or NBC run another Palin-mocking but raising any reasonable inquiry into obama is derided or flat out ignored. The fix is in, and its working.

The lazy homers at the Chicago Tribune are content mocking Sarah Palin rather than investigating the politician right under its nose.

UPDATE: John Hinderaker's take:

We live in a political system that has not yet been adequately described, but one might call it a "mediated democracy." Mediated by a self-appointed, generally ignorant but highly opinionated "elite" that is not elite by any conventional measure--income, intelligence, education, social position--but that successfully dictates the terms of political discourse even though it no longer controls (exclusively, anyway) the means of production of the news. Someday, social scientists may be able to explain this. For now, we appear to be stuck with it.

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Obama's slow-pitch Sunday

Here is the "vetting" the MSM (D-Obama) is giving a presidential candidate five weeks from the election. This "exclusive" interview of Barack Obama was conducted by CBS' Bob Schieffer on Sunday morning's Face the Nation. Here are the questions only:

SCHIEFFER: …Senator, it's still very complicated. We should stress this, it still hasn't even been put down on
paper, all of it. But I know you were talking with the negotiators through the night last night. What can you tell us about it, and can you support it?
SCHIEFFER: So as it stands now...
SCHIEFFER: ...from what you understand about it, you will support this?
SCHIEFFER: Well, let's just--let's just talk about this. When the president came on television and said we need this bailout package, he painted it in the most dire terms.
SCHIEFFER: How--do you agree with him? How crucial is it that this pass? How bad is this situation right now?
SCHIEFFER: So it is as serious--you agree with the president's assessment. It's as serious as he said it was?
SCHIEFFER: Let me ask you this. You and Senator McCain took very different approaches to this. He suspended his campaign, he called for a big summit meeting in Washington.
SCHIEFFER: You stood back a little bit at that point. Now that this--it looks like they've gotten to some agreement, should Senator McCain be getting the credit here for forcing these people
back to the negotiating table?
SCHIEFFER: This was obviously the first topic, as it should have been, in the debate Friday
night. This is your first time to talk about the debate since then. How do you think it went?
SCHIEFFER: All right. We're going to take a break here and come back and talk about some of
that in more detail in just a minute.
SCHIEFFER: And we're back now with Senator Obama.
Senator, it seems to me that the whole debate came down to a couple of questions. You questioned Senator McCain's judgment repeatedly, he repeatedly said you just didn't understand; that you didn't have the knowledge or the understanding to deal with these issues, both the
financial issues and foreign policy issues.
SCHIEFFER: Some Democrats said that they thought he was being condescending to you. Did
you take it in that way?
SCHIEFFER: One of the most heated points in the debate came when we were talking, or you all were talking about whether or not you would sit down with America's enemies...
SCHIEFFER: ...and under what conditions. Would you, and under what conditions would you talk to, say, somebody like President Ahmadinejad of Iran?
SCHIEFFER: While we're still on foreign policy, Senator McCain's running mate, Sarah Palin,
claimed in an interview that Alaska's proximity to Russia somehow enhances her foreign policy
experience and credentials. Do you agree with that?
SCHIEFFER: Well, do you believe she's qualified?
SCHIEFFER: But don't you think what she says is important?
SCHIEFFER: I mean, she could be a heartbeat away from the presidency.
SCHIEFFER: Neither you nor Senator McCain would kind of be pinned down on the changes
that are obviously going to have to me made because of this financial situation.
SCHIEFFER: There are some things that simply we're not going to be able to afford. Senator
McCain said one thing he would do would freeze spending.
SCHIEFFER: Freeze all government programs with the exception of entitlements, national defense and veterans' care. Do you think that's feasible?
SCHIEFFER: We really have to go.
SCHIEFFER: All right, Senator, thank you so much. We're just out of time.
SCHIEFFER: Thank you for being with us. Thank you.

Whew.....Barack must have been a bundle of nerves after that "grilling."

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Saturday, September 27, 2008

The video that should sink Obama

The angle the MSM (D-Obama) refuses to cover.

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Debatable pandering

I thought John McCain decisively defeated Barack Obama last night on substance. He schooled Obama on foreign policy and managed to steer the economy argument to earmarks and spending—his turf. If the MSM (D-Obama) was balanced, it would be pummeling Obama today for his Kissinger gaffe. My guess is it will barely touch it.

On style, of course, Obama is hard to match. In reality, when you dice his words and substance, he's the best disguised empty suit we've ever seen in national politics. He slides and dissembles gracefully and almost invisibly. Two times, however, I thought he slipped up.

When Obama tried to match a story McCain told about a fallen soldier and the bracelet he wears, he had to look down to see the name of the soldier and verbally stumbled, briefly. If you are going to wear a soldier's bracelet, you better have the story down stone cold or it looks like your symbol is a hollow pander.

Another way Obama panders (and many other politicians) is constant use of the word "folks." I always thought Obama's use was particularly incongruous because in the liberal elite circles he hangs, I'm not convinced the "folks" are a big concern. But Obama reflexively uses the term of endearment, even when referring to terrorists.

And the point that I originally made is that we took our eye off Afghanistan, we took our eye off the folks who perpetrated 9/11, they are still sending out videotapes and Senator McCain, nobody is talking about defeat in Iraq, but I have to say we are having enormous problems in Afghanistan because of that decision.

Obama doesn't have to pander to terrorists—I'm sure they already are hoping he wins.

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Friday, September 26, 2008

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Obama's 'Gazebo to Nowhere'

The Illinois Attorney General is now investigating a $100,000 state earmark from Barack Obama to the wife of a former campaign worker that apparently produced nothing of value to taxpayers unless you call an isolated, unfinished gazebo in a weed-filled lot a structure of value.

Obama and Kenny Smith announced the "Englewood Botanic Garden Project" at a January 2000 news conference at Englewood High School. Obama was in the midst of a failed bid to oust South Side Democratic Rep. Bobby Rush for a seat in Congress. The garden -- planned near and under L tracks between 59th Place and 62nd Place -- fell outside of Obama's Illinois Senate district but within the congressional district's borders.

Obama vowed to "work tirelessly" to raise $1.1 million to help Smith's organization turn the City of Chicago-owned lot into an oasis of trees and paths. But Obama lost the congressional race, no more money was raised, and today the garden site is a mess of weeds, chunks of concrete and garbage. The only noticeable improvement is a gazebo.

Sounds a lot like the low-income housing developments in Obama's state senate district. Developers got rich, Obama got campaign funds and residents and taxpayers got screwed.

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Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Political courage, corruption and Palin

As Illinois journalists, politicians and other institutions act offended at campaign commercials that portray Chicago and Illinois as corrupt, what is the big picture? The home town players are all trying to draw fine lines absolving themselves of taint.

What's needed in Illinois is not just another campaign ethics law—we had one of those in 1998 and it preceded the most corrupt period in state history.

What's more important are politicians who stand up against their own political interests and say enough is enough. Who has done that in Illinois? Very few and certainly not Barack Obama. For example, Obama helped elect Rod Blagojevich and then endorsed him for re-election when it was known he was under multiple federal investigations.

What's needed is someone like Sarah Palin. With a large family to feed and no personal wealth, she quit a $122,000 job at the most powerful political commission in Alaska after she blew the whistle on corrupt members of her own party. She then took on her own party in a primary and defeated a corrupt governor.

Has anyone done that in Illinois recently?

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Sarah Palin said what?

"When the stock market crashed, Franklin Roosevelt got on the television and didn't just talk about the princes of greed. He said, 'Look, here's what happened."

Boy, is she dumb. Oh, wait, that was Joe Biden. And Katie Couric, a network anchor, didn't catch it either.

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Monday, September 22, 2008

The biggest lie of all

Right on cue, the John McCain campaign notes Barack Obama's anti-reform record with the ad below. The phrase "lie" is being thrown around during this campaign and most of the time, it's overstatement. But I listened to a podcast over the weekend where local liberal lobbyist Dan Johnson-Weinberger said, "It's deceitful to say that he (Barack Obama) didn't play a central role in cleaning up Illinois government (with the ethics legislation)...." Wow. If Weinberger believes Illinois government has been cleaned up, he's alone.

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Ten reasons Barack Obama is no reformer

We in Illinois know Barack Obama is a faux reformer. He has never bucked his own party in a meaningful way. He has thrived during the most corrupt period in Illinois history and instead of standing up to it, he essentially went with the dirty flow, as this excellent book points out. In no particular order, here are 10 examples.

1. Governor Rod Blagojevich. At 13 percent approval he is the most unpopular governor in the country. For good reason—he's probably the most corrupt. Since he took office in 2003 proclaiming he'd reform Illinois government, his administration has been an ethical and operational disaster. He's facing a huge federal investigation into his cronyism and hiring practices. His number one and two outside advisors/fundraisers have been indicted and in Tony Rezko's case, convicted. Obama has many many common advisors, supporters and donors with Blagojevich, including Rezko. Obama chaired a state senate committee that approved a health board consolidation that was crucial in allowing Rezko and pals to plunder state government. Never once during five years of this mushrooming corruption scandal has Obama criticized the governor. Contrast this with Obama's predecessor, U.S. Senator Peter Fitzgerald, who sharply and publicly disagreed and moved to stop corruption under a governor of his own party under federal investigation during his tenure. That governor, George Ryan, has since gone to federal prison. Obama not only has refused to criticize Blagojevich, he has given him campaign assignments.

2. Tony Rezko-aided house deal. The news media has given Obama's mansion deal spasmodic attention. Several burning questions remain about the June 2005 purchase of his Chicago south side mansion on the same day his influence peddler pal purchased the adjacent lot. After months of stonewalling, Obama has answered some questions about the sale, but has glaringly obscured the crux of the question—did he receive financial benefit from Rezko's participation. He has released dozens of pages of documents related to the sale but not the most important one that lists all the money changing hands. We also haven't heard from the sellers of the properties and the agents/brokers involved. There is strong circumstantial evidence that the Obamas received a financial benefit of up to hundreds of thousands of dollars from Rezko's same day participation, which would be a blatant violation of Senate ethics rules, among other standards. Despite this, the media seems to have dropped its interest for some reason.

3. Mayor Richard Daley. Although much more popular than Governor Blagojevich, Daley's administration also has had its share of corruption problems. A federal investigation into hiring practices has produced high profile indictments and is still underway. The heat produced by the probes even caused the media in Chicago to ask Obama about it and he offered mild concern, a micro-rebuke he withdrew within hours. Perhaps his main advisor, David Axelrod, who also advises Daley, straightened him out. Months earlier, Axelrod had written an op-ed in the Chicago Tribune defending Daley's political patronage. Since then, Obama has been mum about Chicago corruption.

4. Anti-reform endorsement decisions. When Obama has been asked to make an endorsement that matters, he sides with self-interest over reform. Obama supporter Eric Zorn noted with disgust that Obama refused to side with reform in sitting out the 2006 Cook County Board President primary, effectively handing re-election to machine hack John Stroger over the reform-minded Forrest Claypool. Obama endorsed donor/banker Alexi Giannoulias over a downstate law enforcement official in the 2006 primary for state treasurer. Giannoulias' family bank was accused of giving loans to mob figures and other unseemly practices. Obama's high-profile TV ads for Alexi proved decisive in the race. Giannoulias has since become a presidential campaign bundler. Obama also made an unusual mayoral endorsement for suburban Aurora mayor Tom Weisner in 2005. Aurora's lobbyist: Obama's first political advisor, Dan Shomon.

5. Emil Jones. The longtime Illinois Senate president and Obama's political godfather is by even the most generous characterization, an opponent of reform. Over the years, Jones has dished out the pork, hired his relatives, enjoyed the perks of government and frequently had his integrity questioned. In other words, another Chicago machine hack. Again, Obama has never stood up or spoke out about any of Jones escapades.

6. The Robert Blackwell Jr. caper. One of the most under mentioned items on Obama's resume is the fishy legal contract he received from major donor Robert Blackwell Jr. As the Los Angeles Times reported, the contract gave Obama an $8,000-a-month contract for legal work that he refuses to detail. After the contract, Obama helped Blackwell receive state and federal grants for dubious projects and his wife was a key player in a minority contracting program at her hospital that netted Blackwell's father a massive contract.

7. Slumlord/donors over constituents. The Chicago Sun-Times and Boston Globe have chronicled how Obama's legislative actions as state senator directly helped his donor friends obtain government low-income housing assistance in his district and elsewhere. Subsequently, those donors, most prominently Rezko, skimmed profits and left Obama's constituents without heat and other essentials. Obama was indifferent to it all—the complaints from residents, the failure by tenants, Rezko's growing financial problems. Obama was plenty attentive, though, to the checks from Rezko that fueled his political campaigns.

8. The Iraq mysteries. Serious questions remain about the ties between Obama and Rezko associatiates Nadhmi Auchi, an Iraqi-born billionaire and Aiham Alsammarae, the former Iraqi power czar, both of whom have had serious problems with the law. Obama attended a dinner in Auchi's honor at Rezko's home in 2004. Three weeks before the Rezko-Obama house deal was finalized in June 2005, Auchi lent Rezko $3.5 million. At one point, Auchi enlisted Rezko to get his travel visa to the United States restored and the Rezko investigation he reached out to two Illinois officials. Obama has given vague denials it was him or his office. Alsammarae gave a Rezko-connected firm a $50 million contract for power plant security that Obama's U.S. Senate office may have tried to revive after it was killed. He also posted part of Rezko's bond. Obama has only barely trickled answers out on these matters and the mainstream press has given this explosive arena very little attention.

9. Secrecy and harassment. Obama has created the illusion of transparency through support of some no-brainer measures and then locked the door on many of his own documents. He won't turn over his Illinois state senate records, the main document related to his house purchase with Rezko, his complete medical records, his college transcripts, his law license application, the client list of his main advisor, his U.S. Senate email records and so on. He also harasses critics, telling his supporters to smear legitimate authors and researchers who dare level any information that differs from his self-created narrative.

10. A 1998 state ethics bill canard. Obama's supporters continually point to Obama's sponsorship of a 1998 ethics law in Illinois as proof of his concern for reform. The reality is the bill passed 52-4 and was tepid, inching Illinois regulations a bit closer to the rest of states but leaving it far behind most. Regardless, the larger point is this: The law had virtually no effect on preventing corruption in Illinois. To the contrary, the law went into effect at the onset of perhaps the most corrupt period in Illinois history, an era that saw the indictment and conviction of a governor, the likely indictment of his successor, and plentiful indictments and convictions in city and state offices. Far more important than a milquetoast law, Illinois needed politicians to courageously speak out against the corruption bubbling around them.

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Sunday, September 14, 2008

Obama's 'invisible' resume not so invisible

In the middle of this video is Barack Obama talking about his failed five-year chairmanship of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge, a $160 million education reform grant program that produced nothing of value to students.

The Chicago Tribune, the newspaper of record in Chicago, still can't find this item on his resume. The grant, by the way, was made possible by unrepentent domestic terrorist Bill Ayers, who kicked off Obama's political career at a cozy left-wing gathering in Hyde Park. We still have no idea why Obama got the coveted chairmanship of this foundation because no member of the MSM will ask him.

Can you imagine the MSM not mentioning a five-year chairmanship by Sarah Palin of a foundation that was handing out money to right-wing groups?

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Saturday, September 13, 2008

NY Times sets Alaskans straight

One of the great advantages John McCain has in the presidential race is that his enemies—Democrats and the liberal press—have no idea how much they are helping him.

In its desperation to destroy Sarah Palin before she takes hold as a feminist busting role model, the New York Times today runs a lengthy front page profile on her that barely is more journalistically sound than an extended comment on a liberal blog.

Titled, "Once elected, Palin hired friends and lashed foes," the story is one that could be written on exactly every major public official. All it takes is to find a few critics, shake the words around and voila—another serious piece of journalism from the world's greatest newspaper.

This one took a little more work from the Times because Palin has fewer enemies than most.

To her supporters — and with an 80 percent approval rating, she has plenty — Ms. Palin has lifted Alaska out of a mire of corruption. She gained the passage of a bill that tightens the rules covering lobbyists. And she rewrote the tax code to capture a greater share of oil and gas sale proceeds.

What a break for Alaskans! They have been too busy spearing fish and stacking wood to examine their governor's record in such a "sophisticated" manner. I'm sure they are very thankful the NY Times is 'splaining things for their undersized frozen brains. I'm sure the 80 percent approval ratings will melt away along with everything else in Alaska after Al Gore's prophecy comes true.

And, somewhere, Karl Rove is thankful too, because every misfire like this on Palin helps the McCain-Palin ticket win exactly the target voters who will prove decisive in November.

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Friday, September 12, 2008

Obama's retooled strategy: mock senior citizens

Barack Obama, for about the fifth time, promises a tough new edge to his campaign. His first move—insulting 20 percent of Americans who don't use email.

I bet the damage is even worse. I don't think children of non-email using senior citizens are appreciative of a presidential ad mocking their parents.

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Thursday, September 11, 2008

Thanks, but no thanks to NPR reporting

National Public Radio (and others) continues to misstate its conclusion on the "Bridge to Nowhere." Starting to remind me of 2004 when MSM outlets continually misstated that the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth claims had been "discredited."

National Public Radio (NPR) is continuing its crusade against Sarah Palin over her statement that as Governor of Alaska she told Congress "thanks, but no thanks" for the Bridge to Nowhere. Today, NPR again suggested that Palin's claim inaccurate and lamented the fact that Palin continues to assert it even after journalists have "cried foul" (NPR seems to think that Republican campaign rhetoric requires the MSM's seal of approval). And it trotted out a retired newsman, Jack Nelson formerly of the LA Times, to call Palin's claim "a lie."

It's true that when Palin uses her "thanks, but no thanks" line she omits certain information -- her initial support for the project, the fact that Congress revoked the earmark, and the fact that Bridge had become an embarrassment by the time Palin nixed it. But the fact remains that nothing Congress did would have prevented Alaska from using federal money to build the bridge. It was Palin who stopped this from happening.

Thus, while Palin's statement might cause an audience to overrate her when it comes to the bridge (as some of Obama's statements would cause an audience to overrate significantly his legislative achievements), her statement is not inaccurate, and certainly is not a lie. By contrast, NPR has claimed that Congress killed the Bridge to Nowhere. As noted, that claim is inaccurate.

This is very simple. She killed the project. That's the way the news media reported it at the time. If you don't believe it, go to Alaska and look for the bridge. It's not there.

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Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Dem strategies to nowhere

As they start to panic at the direction of the presidential race, a Democratic strategist (via Patterico) lays out the blunders the Barack Obama campaign and his supporters are making. This guy knows what he's talking about.

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Monday, September 8, 2008

Core aeration

The intense battle today on whether John McCain and Sarah Palin are "mavericks" is one that Barack Obama must win or he will lose the election. And I don't see how he can.

McCain's pick of Palin had many winning strategic dimensions. Commentators are focusing heavily on social issues. The "x" factor, however is reform. The public already believes McCain is a reformer, capable of bucking his own party. Palin has that same reputation. Because Obama and Joe Biden have no such reputations, the strategic edge is great. And few things move voters more strongly than the notion that a politician will do the right thing against the grain of partisanship.

That's why McCain's ad touting the ticket's maverick status was answered quickly by the Obama team and why Obama personally challenged Palin today despite the obvious disadvantage of a #1 ticket member going after the other party's #2.

Team Obama might be able to nick and bruise the McCain-Palin argument, but it will cost a lot of money and effort and it will suffer a backlash that will be a net negative. That's because McCain has been a reformer and the public knows it and believes it. Palin, even though less known, has spectacularly gone against her party in much the same way U.S. Senator Peter Fitzgerald did in Illinois. Because that behavior is so rare, it sears in voters' minds and is career-defining. Obama can say Palin favored the Bridge to Nowhere at one time, but the fact is that she stopped the project. Here's what Newsweek said last year.

In Alaska, Palin is challenging the dominant, sometimes corrupting, role of oil companies in the state's political culture. "The public has put a lot of faith in us," says Palin during a meeting with lawmakers in her downtown Anchorage office, where—as if to drive the point home—the giant letters on the side of the ConocoPhillips skyscraper fill an entire wall of windows. "They're saying, 'Here's your shot, clean it up'." For Palin, that has meant tackling the cozy relationship between the state's political elite and the energy industry that provides 85 percent of Alaska's tax revenues—and distancing herself from fellow Republicans, including the state's senior U.S. senator, Ted Stevens, whose home was recently searched by FBI agents looking for evidence in an ongoing corruption investigation. (Stevens has denied any wrongdoing.)


In an interview with NEWSWEEK, Palin said it's time for Alaska to "grow up" and end its reliance on pork-barrel spending. Shortly after taking office, Palin canceled funding for the "Bridge to Nowhere," a $330 million project that Stevens helped champion in Congress. The bridge, which would have linked the town of Ketchikan to an island airport, had come to symbolize Alaska's dependence on federal handouts. Rather than relying on such largesse, says Palin, she wants to prove Alaska can pay its own way, developing its huge energy wealth in ways that are "politically and environmentally clean."

She did run against and defeat the incumbent governor of her own party. She did blow the whistle on Republicans who were misusing their offices. That's one of the reasons why she is the most popular governor in America with approval ratings that have frequently topped 80 percent. And the flip-flop label won't stick either because that suggests phoniness and Palin appears the opposite of a phony. In Alaska, I don't imagine a phony would last long in politics.

Obama is rhetorically defenseless on this point and he knows it. It underscores one of the biggest blunders of his political career—completely acquiescing to rampant corruption around him in Chicago and Illinois in an attempt to curry favor with power brokers and bosses. A couple of sharp words and strategic actions on corruption during his earlier career probably would have cemented his election as president this fall.

McCain's brilliant selection of Palin has created the reform battefield that is so deadly to his opponent. His earlier bold support for the surge in Iraq has undercut Obama's other change argument. Two bold moves and McCain has shaped the next two months to his strong advantage, even in an otherwise negative environment for Republicans. Those maneuvers alone should give us confidence in McCain's ability to lead the country.

He is starting to gut Obama's core argument to be president and there's not much "The One" can do about it.

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Saturday, September 6, 2008

Begala allowed to lie on CNN

Another example of fake story telling on CNN. About 4:45 into this video, ex-Clinton aide Paul Begala passionately blasts Sarah Palin for cutting special needs funding as Governor. The only problem is that it's not true.

KATHLEEN HALL JAMIESON: Let me give you an example. On CNN earlier this week Soledad O'Brien picks up something apparently from e-mails, although perhaps from bloggers because it's circulating in both places, and takes as fact that Governor Palin has cut special needs funding. Now, if she has, that evocative moment in the speech in which she promised to be the advocate for special needs children is an act of hypocrisy. So very important moment. However, it's raised on the assumption that it's true. It's asserted as true by Soledad O'Brien. When Soledad O'Brien raises it, the McCain spokesperson responds by defending what the governor will do in the future, the reasonable viewer watches and says, "Well, the McCain spokesperson isn't defending and saying she didn't do it. Perhaps she did."

Now you have a moment in which journalism has deceived its audience because in the rush to make this point about possible hypocrisy, a major commentator on a major network has asserted as fact something which doesn't hold up. It took the FactCheck.org researcher that I called on my staff about four hours to get back to the primary research documents.

BILL MOYERS:And it said?

KATHLEEN HALL JAMIESON:That Sarah Palin had increased funding for special needs children. There was a change in the category in the budget in which it was housed. And as a result, there was some confusion. And some people had generalized from the budget proposed by the predecessor that she defeated. And so the problem I have with some of the press coverage is that in the rush to vet, they made the mistake they were accusing the McCain campaign of. But I don't think that has anything to do with gender. I think that has something to do with the nature of 24-hour-a-day journalism.

It's amazing how the cable networks just allowed the flow of Palin rumors to flow right from the left-wing blogosphere onto the air without any attempt at checking facts.

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The Palin rumor list

A handy list of Palin rumors and smears.

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Friday, September 5, 2008

Smears, made-up vetting continue

With a renewed vigor to smear Sarah Palin, the left-leaning news media and blogosphere continues to misfire in its attempt to explore her past.

The Chicago Tribune today, the hometown paper that couldn't even find a major failure on Barack Obama's resume after millions of words of profiles, uncovers the scoop that the Alaskan state plane was not actually sold on eBay! Of course, Palin never said it did.

"That luxury jet was over the top," Palin, the Republican vice presidential nominee, said to loud cheers. "I put it on eBay."

But she hinted it did, opine the Trib vetters.

Palin's statement implied the plane was sold through the online auction site revered for empowering millions of small entrepreneurs, and Palin's spokeswoman insisted Thursday that the transaction occurred. But the plane failed to sell on eBay.

The plane, after not selling on eBay, sold through a broker. Taxpayers in Alaska were $2.1 million richer as a result. So, there's no story whatsoever.

CNN picked up the sinister eBay scandal and interviewed the star of "Troopergate," a story that was exposed as a pile of nothing with the interview of the aggrieved "victim" of Governor Palin's "abuse of power," a trooper who admitted on camera he tasered his 11-year-old son, illegally shot a moose, and looked to be lying on camera when he denied threatening the Palin family.

Elsewhere, establishment media queen bee Sally Quinn apologized for disparaging Palin before her speech Wednesday night. As a true member of the "herd," she is hedging her bets in case this Palin thing is for real.

On the blogs, our very own Archpundit, usually a careful fellow compared to his liberal brethren, went into full supermarket tablet mode with the hints that an attempt to seal the court file by Todd Palin's business partner portended a Jack Ryan like sex scandal. In anticipation, he even posted a chronology of the Jack Ryan affair. By nightfall, his hopes were dashed. The fact that he believed an open court file with that kind of bombshell would have been missed by the Alaska press says a lot about the contempt some liberals have for small town America.

Please keep it up. You are assuring a Republican victory in November.

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Thursday, September 4, 2008

She's dumb!

The left can never admit someone on the right is smart "like them." Eric Zorn sneers at Sarah Palin for using phonetic spelling on her teleprompter (common), her accent, and insinuating that she simply read a speech written by speech writers.

As an orator, as a presence on the stage, as a personality she was, let's be honest, OK. Yes she said "EYE-rack," "EYE-ran" and "IM-ported oil," which grated on my ear (she didn't say the word "nuclear" as NEWK-yoo-lar, as President Bush is wont to do, but that may have been because her script spelled the word out for her phonetically, "new clear," I kid you not), but the text was well-wrought and had some sharp, memorable lines in it.

You'd hope so. She's had experience giving political speeches and reading from a teleprompter, she had the services of some of the top speechwriters in the United States and she had several days to practice. What was anyone expecting? Deer-in-the-headlights stammering of artless phrases?

In other words, she's a news anchor. First, I don't know how he would know whether Palin participated in the writing of her speech. My guess is yes. Either way, do Democrats all write their own speeches? And even if a politician writes their own speech, that doesn't make them smarter or superior to one who doesn't. Whoever wrote Barack Obama's acceptance speech last week did a poor job.

Just to review, here's Obama without a teleprompter.

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Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Sarah Barracuda

One of the most compelling and effective convention speeches I've ever heard. That sound you hear is the chain of public opinion—Sarah Palin's going up and the MSM's going down. All the smears of the last 48 hours look hollow. No wonder the Obama camp was trying so hard to disqualify her before the American people had a chance to see this. If this race is to be won in the blue collar towns of America, I'd rather have Sarah Barracuda by my side than the cuff-linked windbag from Scranton.

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Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Failed vetters fail again

The MSM continually beats the drum, asking whether John McCain adequately vetted Sarah Palin.

I've never seen the MSM work so hard. Ironically, the same MSM had 18 months to inspect Barack Obama's biography and failed to find Obama's only executive experience.

Here are the gems the MSM has "found" so far on Palin that have justified headlines such as "scandal" and "beleaguered."

1. Her husband got a DUI when he was 22 years old.

2. She once was a member of another political party in Alaska. (Nope, that report was false).

3. She might have failed to renew a business license to run a car wash once.

4. Her newest child was actually borne by her daughter (Nope, that report was false).

5. She is under legislative investigation by her political opponents for a trumped up charge of firing an employee.

The American people will not fall for this blatant partisan smear. Once they hear Palin speak they will know that the MSM is lying again.

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Obama hints Blago qualified as president

Follow the "logic" of Barack Obama's statement on CNN last night and you have to conclude that Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich is twice as qualifed to be president as him by virtue of his two successful campaigns for governor.

This answer came after he was asked whether he was experienced enough to be president.

Well, my understanding is that Governor Palin's town of Wasilla has, I think, 50 employees. We've got 2,500 in this campaign. I think their budget is maybe $12 million a year. You know, we have a budget of about three times that just for the month. So I think that our ability to manage large systems and to execute I think has been made clear over the last couple of years," Obama said.

Somebody also ought to tell "The One" that Sarah Palin is governor of Alaska, not mayor of Wasilla.

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Hmmmm....Tribune wonders about vetting

Mark Silva of the Chicago Tribune tries to make the case that the John McCain campaign insufficiently vetted Sarah Palin.

But the question is unavoidable, as revelations about the private life of a public figure little-known to the public unfold.

It's a question of vetting, perhaps, which hadn't been fully performed in the case of (Thomas) Eagleton and may still be underway with Palin. Eagleton was tapped as a last-minute selection by McGovern in 1972. Palin was chosen last-minute by Republican McCain, last week.

This is quite rich coming from the Tribune, a paper that wrote millions of words about Barack Obama and didn't know about a key element of his resume until conservative researchers raised the issue.

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Monday, September 1, 2008

Tribune's Annenberg malpractice

How is it that the Chicago Tribune, Chicago Sun-Times and other major media outlets breathlessly covering Barack Obama's every move the last two years failed to mention the only item on his resume that qualifies as executive experience?

For nearly five years starting in 1995, Obama was chairman of the board of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge, a foundation that handed out $115 million in education "reform" grants that resulted in exactly zero student improvement according to its own post-analysis.

A search of Tribune and Sun-Times stories, including numerous major profiles, have whitewashed Annenberg from Obama's past. Obama himself dropped Annenberg from his resume but it's not hard to find it back in the mid-1990s when he was starting his political career and touting the post.

The founder of the grant was unrepentent terrorist Bill Ayers, who, along with his wife, another unrepetent terrorist, Bernadine Dohrn, hosted a fundraiser to kick off Obama's political career. That relationship was criticized in a devastating TV ad by the independent group American Issues Project.

Only after respected conservative academic/researcher Stanley Kurtz and a few others started looking at the CAC did the sleepy MSM start to pay attention. The media covered the flap over whether the CAC records would remain sealed at Ayers' school, the University of Illinois-Chicago, and quickly waved off the public by saying there were no "smoking guns" in the documents.

Chicago Tribune's liberal columnist/blogger Eric Zorn took the Obama campaign to task for sliming Kurtz and asking supporters to jam phone lines for Kurtz's appearance on WGN-720 long-running and academic-oriented talk show hosted by University of Chicago professor Milt Rosenberg. But Zorn added that Rosenberg was wrong for scheduling Kurtz at all. If I were Rosenberg, I'd ask Zorn why his newspaper failed to once mention this significant item on Obama's resume in the millions of words they've produced on the world's most famous liberal. Would the newspaper have ignored a conservative candidate's service on a foundation board that handed out mostly conservative grants and whose founder was a right wing terrorist who would be in prison for life except for prosecutorial misconduct? Just asking.

It's unclear whether the Trib was incompetent or just biased in failing to note the Annenberg connection.

Two 2008 stories on the Ayers failed to note the link. On April 24, the paper published, "Questions and Answers About Bill Ayers." (No link available).

Q: How close is Obama to Ayers ?

A: Obama visited the Ayers -Dohrn home for a meeting at the start of his first state Senate bid in 1995. Obama 's campaign has said their relationship is "friendly." Also, Obama and Ayers once served together on the board of the Woods Fund of Chicago, which helps the poor.

Q: Has Ayers donated money to the Obama campaign?

A: He gave $200 for Obama 's state Senate race in 2001.

Another Tribune story on Ayers this year failed to mention Annenberg.

He was reportedly introduced to Obama in the mid-1990s. The two men served together for three years on the board of the Woods Fund of Chicago, a grantmaking organization founded in 1941 to help the city's poor. Obama left the board in 2002; Ayers remains a member.

The liberal media establishment in Chicago is feebly attempting to quash the Ayers uproar partly because it doesn't understand the concern about Ayers and because it looks foolish for failing to note the Obama/Annenberg/Ayers chapter in its creation of the Obama fairy tale. Keep in mind that school reform has been a big issue in the Chicago media over the years, so Obama's stewardship of that grant program definitely is relevant to understanding his past.

Former Sun-Times reporter and left-wing education reformer Linda Lenz wrote a pathetic rebuttal in the Sun-Times where she noted that Chicago reporters were embarassed they were being asked to look into the matter because of legitimate questions raised by conservative journalists.

Some of the reporters assigned to dig into the Annenberg archives felt a little silly about it all, I'm told. Their editors should too.

She proceeds to cheap shot Kurtz, a Ph. D. in social anthropology from Harvard University and a Senior Fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center, by referring to him simply as a "blogger."

There are two points here. (Blogger) Obama was head of a significant enterprise that incompetently handed out money, perhaps to cronies. It isn't a good advertisement on his administrative leadership skills, which is important because he has no other such experience. (Please, don't suggest running a successful campaign is a harbinger of competent governance; Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich ran two successful governor campaigns and is the most inept governor in the country).

The second point is the Ayers connection. Liberals in the Chicago establishment might never understand it, but decent people across America don't associate with unrepetent terrorists and wouldn't if the opportunity presented itself. Even among journalists, there is recognition that the issue has force.

Tribune researcher Brenda Kilianski, earlier this year, wrote an op-ed that expressed disgust at the media's whitewashing of Ayers' past.

Of course, one can't blame Obama for being so surprised or offended by a question he probably wasn't expecting. For too long, the media have been complicit in polishing the images of Bill Ayers , Bernardine Dohrn, Kathy Boudin and the rest of their radical, violent ilk.

My own paper has been equally guilty. The Tribune ran a cover story on Bill Ayers in the Sunday magazine section (coincidentally, the Sunday after 9/11), an article that served as free publicity for his book "Fugitive Days." Later, we profiled Ayers ' adopted son Chesa Boudin, Rhodes scholar, social activist and terror apologist. That soft, glowing piece glossed over the reasons Boudin's biological parents, radical activists Kathy Boudin and David Gilbert, were incarcerated.

The Tribune needs to ask itself why it continues to downplay and even ignore Barack Obama's association with a man who, but for prosecutorial mistakes, probably would still be in prison today and has no regrets about his terrorist acts.

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