Category Archives: ’08 Election

The night we waved goodbye to America… our last best hope on Earth

http://hitchensblog.mailonsunday.co.uk/2008/11/the-night-we-wa.html
This is Peter Hitchens’ Mail on Sunday column
Anyone would think we had just elected a hip, skinny and youthful replacement for God, with a plan to modernise Heaven and Hell – or that at the very least John Lennon had come back from the dead.
The swooning frenzy over the choice of Barack Obama as President of the United States must be one of the most absurd waves of self-deception and swirling fantasy ever to sweep through an advanced civilisation. At least Mandela-worship – its nearest equivalent – is focused on a man who actually did something.
I really don’t see how the Obama devotees can ever in future mock the Moonies, the Scientologists or people who claim to have been abducted in flying saucers. This is a cult like the one which grew up around Princess Diana, bereft of reason and hostile to facts.
It already has all the signs of such a thing. The newspapers which recorded Obama’s victory have become valuable relics. You may buy Obama picture books and Obama calendars and if there isn’t yet a children’s picture version of his story, there soon will be.

Proper books, recording his sordid associates, his cowardly voting record, his astonishingly militant commitment to unrestricted abortion and his blundering trip to Africa, are little-read and hard to find.

If you can believe that this undistinguished and conventionally Left-wing machine politician is a sort of secular saviour, then you can believe anything. He plainly doesn’t believe it himself. His cliche-stuffed, PC clunker of an acceptance speech suffered badly from nerves.  It was what you would expect from someone who knew he’d promised too much and that from now on the easy bit was over.

He needn’t worry too much. From now on, the rough boys and girls of America’s Democratic Party apparatus, many recycled from Bill Clinton’s stained and crumpled entourage, will crowd round him, to collect the rich spoils of his victory and also tell him what to do, which is what he is used to.
Just look at his sermon by the shores of Lake Michigan. He really did talk about a ‘new dawn’, and a ‘timeless creed’ (which was ‘yes, we can’). He proclaimed that ‘change has come’. He revealed that, despite having edited the Harvard Law Review, he doesn’t know what ‘enormity’ means. He reached depths of oratorical drivel never even plumbed by our own Mr Blair, burbling about putting our hands on the arc of history (or was it the ark of history?) and bending it once more toward the hope of a better day (Don’t try this at home).

I am not making this up. No wonder that awful old hack Jesse Jackson sobbed as he watched. How he must wish he, too, could get away with this sort of stuff.

And it was interesting how the President-elect failed to lift his admiring audience by repeated – but rather hesitant – invocations of the brainless slogan he was forced by his minders to adopt against his will – ‘Yes, we can’. They were supposed to thunder ‘Yes, we can!’ back at him, but they just wouldn’t join in.  No wonder. Yes we can what exactly? Go home and keep a close eye on the tax rate, is my advice. He’d have been better off bursting into ‘I’d like to teach the world to sing in perfect harmony’ which contains roughly the same message and might have attracted some valuable commercial sponsorship.

Perhaps, being a Chicago crowd, they knew some of the things that 52.5 per cent of America prefers not to know. They know Obama is the obedient servant of one of the most squalid and unshakeable political machines in America. They know that one of his alarmingly close associates, a state-subsidised slum landlord called Tony Rezko, has been convicted on fraud and corruption charges.

They also know the US is just as segregated as it was before Martin Luther King – in schools, streets, neighbourhoods, holidays, even in its TV-watching habits and its choice of fast-food joint. The difference is that it is now done by unspoken agreement rather than by law.

If Mr Obama’s election had threatened any of that, his feel-good white supporters would have scuttled off and voted for John McCain, or practically anyone. But it doesn’t. Mr Obama, thanks mainly to the now-departed grandmother he alternately praised as a saint and denounced as a racial bigot, has the huge advantages of an expensive private education. He did not have to grow up in the badlands of useless schools, shattered families and gangs which are the lot of so many young black men of his generation.

If the nonsensical claims made for this election were true, then every positive discrimination programme aimed at helping black people into jobs they otherwise wouldn’t get should be abandoned forthwith. Nothing of the kind will happen. On the contrary, there will probably be more of them.

And if those who voted for Obama were all proving their anti-racist nobility, that presumably means that those many millions who didn’t vote for him were proving themselves to be hopeless bigots. This is obviously untrue.
I was in Washington DC the night of the election. America’s beautiful capital has a sad secret. It is perhaps the most racially divided city in the world, with 15th Street – which runs due north from the White House – the unofficial frontier between black and white. But, like so much of America, it also now has a new division, and one which is in many ways much more important. I had attended an election-night party in a smart and liberal white area, but was staying the night less than a mile away on the edge of a suburb where Spanish is spoken as much as English, plus a smattering of tongues from such places as Ethiopia, Somalia and Afghanistan.

As I walked, I crossed another of Washington’s secret frontiers. There had been a few white people blowing car horns and shouting, as the result became clear. But among the Mexicans, Salvadorans and the other Third World nationalities, there was something like ecstasy.
They grasped the real significance of this moment. They knew it meant that America had finally switched sides in a global cultural war. Forget the Cold War, or even the Iraq War. The United States, having for the most part a deeply conservative people, had until now just about stood out against many of the mistakes which have ruined so much of the rest of the world.
Suspicious of welfare addiction, feeble justice and high taxes, totally committed to preserving its own national sovereignty, unabashedly Christian in a world part secular and part Muslim, suspicious of the Great Global Warming panic, it was unique.
These strengths had been fading for some time, mainly due to poorly controlled mass immigration and to the march of political correctness. They had also been weakened by the failure of America’s conservative party – the Republicans – to fight on the cultural and moral fronts.
They preferred to posture on the world stage. Scared of confronting Left-wing teachers and sexual revolutionaries at home, they could order soldiers to be brave on their behalf in far-off deserts. And now the US, like Britain before it, has begun the long slow descent into the Third World. How sad. Where now is our last best hope on Earth?

Obama as an antidote to self-indulgence

Obama is ageing baby boomers’ justification for lives of inaction and disreputability.

Politics – ’08 Election (Just Giving It Away)

The right’s response to 9/11 was Iraq. The left’s response to 9/11 is Barack Obama. Need I say more? The financial crisis is one of confidence; the solvent for our present malaise is merely increased due diligence on future initiatives (e.g., conservative capital budgeting decisions). The government should continue to guarantee lines of credit.

The next four years is goinng to be rough; we will be set back even further than we were in the sixties.

Sarah Palin claims Barack Obama would ‘pal around with terrorists’

Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin speaks to an enthusiastic crowd of more than 8,000 in Carson.
John McCain’s running mate questions the Democrat’s ties to William Ayers during a rally in Carson. The Republican running mate also visits Costa Mesa, and is expected to appear today in Burlingame.
By Robin Abcarian, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
October 5, 2008
You can’t say she didn’t warn them.

Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin introduced herself to the nation with a now-famous joke about lipstick being the only difference between a certain dog breed and a hockey mom. On Saturday, the Republican vice presidential nominee unleashed her inner pit bull, accusing Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama of being someone who would “pal around with terrorists.”

Her accusation — made before an overflow crowd of more than 8,000 at Home Depot Center’s tennis stadium in Carson, and earlier in the day at a Denver fundraiser — signaled an increasingly abrasive stance toward Obama on behalf of her running mate, Republican nominee John McCain.

In Carson, Palin signaled her intentions early on in her 23-minute speech.

“One of my campaign staff said as I was walking out here, ‘OK, the heels are on, the gloves are off,’ ” she said.

The “terrorists” to whom Palin was referring is William Ayers, founder of the 1960s radical group Weather Underground, who is now an education professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago and an acquaintance of Obama.

Palin began the attack with a wry observation about her disastrous Katie Couric interview — she appeared to draw a blank when asked which newspapers and magazines she reads. Palin, who later told Fox News that she reads the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal, among other publications, said she was annoyed by Couric’s question.

Clearly buoyed by a well-received performance against her Democratic opponent, Sen. Joe Biden, in their only debate Thursday, Palin apologized for what she described as her “impatient” response to Couric.

“Evidently there’s been a lot of interest in what I read lately,” she said. “I was reading today a copy of the New York Times. And I was really interested to read in there about Barack Obama’s friends from Chicago. Turns out one of his earliest supporters is a man who, according to the New York Times, was a domestic terrorist, that, quote, ‘launched a campaign of bombings that would target the Pentagon and the United States Capitol.’ ”

The New York Times article, an investigation published Friday into whether Obama had a relationship with Ayers, concluded that the men were never close and that Obama has denounced Ayers’ radical past, which occurred when Obama was a child. The article also said Obama “has played down his contacts with” Ayers.

“This is not a man who sees America as you and I see America,” Palin said of Obama. “We see America as a force for good in this world. We see America as a force for exceptionalism. . . . Our opponents see America as imperfect enough to pal around with terrorists who would bomb their own country.”

The Obama campaign responded forcefully. “Gov. Palin’s comments, while offensive, are not surprising, given the McCain campaign’s statement this morning that they would be launching Swift Boat-like attacks in hopes of deflecting attention from the nation’s economic ills,” said spokesman Hari Sevugan.

“In fact, the very newspaper story Gov. Palin cited in hurling her shameless attack made clear that Sen. Obama is not close to Bill Ayers, much less ‘pals,’ and that he has strongly condemned the despicable acts Ayers committed 40 years ago, when Obama was 8. What’s clear is that John McCain and Sarah Palin would rather spend their time tearing down Barack Obama than laying out a plan to build up our economy.”

Republicans have long been expected to attack Obama on the issue. In August a major fundraiser for McCain spent $2.8 million on an ad by the American Issues Project that questioned Obama’s relationship with Ayers.

(The donor, Texas billionaire Harold Simmons, helped fund Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, the group that damaged John F. Kerry’s 2004 presidential campaign when it called his Navy service into question.)

The anti-Obama ad aired in Ohio and Michigan in the summer. Last week, the McCain campaign said it would pull out of Michigan, a tacit admission that it expected Obama to carry the state. Palin, who did not know the campaign pulled out of Michigan until she read about it Friday, according to McCain aides, implied Saturday in Denver that she regretted the decision.

“Well, as I said the other day, I would sure love to get to run to Michigan and make sure that Michigan knows we haven’t given up there,” Palin said as she left a diner after visiting with soldiers’ mothers. “We care much about Michigan and every other state.”

California is a reliably Democratic state in the presidential race — yet it also is a reliable source of cash for Republicans. After the Carson rally Saturday, Palin attended a fundraiser in Costa Mesa.

Today she is scheduled to headline a fundraiser in Burlingame, after which she is expected to leave for Florida. McCain, meanwhile, will take time off to prepare for his second debate with Obama, on Tuesday.

In Carson, Palin was interrupted numerous times by protesters, who were in turn shouted down by the crowd. She said that her father, Chuck Heath, was born in North Hollywood and that her grandfather was a Los Angeles photographer who specialized in shooting boxers. “I learned a few points about fighting from him,” she said.

Many people in the Carson crowd compared Palin favorably with Ronald Reagan.

“What’s wonderful about Sarah is that she’s liberated without being liberal,” said LaDell Jorgensen, 42, who drove from San Clemente for the rally. “She really connects with the old Ronnie Reagan patriotic people who love America.”

Paul Nissan, 56, of Culver City, said it gets kind of lonely being a Republican on the Westside of Los Angeles.

“What’s been set in motion with her makes it seem like California can get in the mix,” he said. “It’s encouraging for those of us out here in Reagan Country.”

Nissan’s friend, Jeanne Tanigawa, 57, said she was a McCain supporter even before he chose Palin.

“She’s like the cherry on top,” Tanigawa said.

Neither Nissan nor Tanigawa was bothered by Palin’s claim that Obama “would pal around with terrorists.”

“I’m aware of the background there,” Nissan said. “I think it’s down to where we’ve got to be blunt about associations and values. The ideological differences are so stark.”

robin.abcarian@latimes.com

Welcome To Camp Obama

By INVESTOR’S BUSINESS DAILY | Posted Friday, October 03, 2008 4:20 PM PT

Election ’08: Voters coast-to-coast are receiving e-mails from the Obama campaign encouraging them to sign up to learn pre-election agitation tactics at “Camp Obama.” Red kerchiefs, anyone?


Read More: Election 2008


 

When readers first alerted us to the camps, we thought it might be another hoax that migrated into inboxes. But it’s for real.

The unsolicited pitch goes like this: “Camp Obama attendees will receive real world organizing experience that will have a direct impact on this election. Graduates of Camp Obama will go on to become Deputy Field Organizers who will lead this campaign to victory in crucial battleground states around the country.”

The letter continues, “By participating in Camp Obama you’ll get the kind of experience that Barack got as a community organizer on the South Side of Chicago, where he learned that real change happens from the bottom up.”

While the letter neglects to identify the source of that “experience,” a slide on a camp blog linked to the Obama Web site offers a clue. Underneath a “Welcome to Camp Obama” banner, a trainer at Obama headquarters in Chicago is seen speaking next to a wipe board with the words “Saul Alinsky” scrawled across it.

Alinsky is the late Chicago socialist and street agitator who is considered the father of community organizing.

Another slide of a camp trainer identified as Mike Kruglik is equally telling. Kruglik happens to be the Alinsky disciple who first taught Obama hardball organizing tactics on the South Side. He was Obama’s boss in the ’80s. Kruglik now works for the Chicago-based Gamaliel Foundation, which trains and deploys radicals across the country.

Kruglik once declared Obama “the undisputed master of agitation,” according to David Freddoso, author of the best-seller “The Case Against Barack Obama.”

Obama learned well from the master agitator. Alinsky taught future radicals that bad things are often done for the right reasons, love without power is sentimental mush, power must be taken, and all change comes about as a result of threat and pressure.

Obama calls his Alinskyite experience “the best education I ever had.”

Now he’s passing it on to his groupies. He recently told supporters in Nevada, a state that will be hotly contested, to sharpen their elbows in the final lap of the race. Confront Republicans, he said, and “get in their faces.”

“Be absolutely ruthless,” adds Camp Obama director Jocelyn Woodards, who leads the intensive two-day training course for campers in Chicago.

In the Alinsky model, organizing is code for agitating. For revolution. He had no patience for liberals who merely talked of change.

“Liberals protest,” he wrote in “Rules for Radicals,” while “radicals rebel.” Liberals become “indignant,” while “radicals become fighting mad and go into action.”

“Liberals give and take oral arguments,” Alinsky added. “Radicals give and take the hard, dirty, bitter way of life.”

Alinsky’s paragon of radicalism was Satan, to whom he dedicated the first edition of “Rules”: “Lest we forget at least an over-the-shoulder acknowledgment to the very first radical known to man who rebelled against the establishment and did it so effectively that he at least won his own kingdom — Lucifer.”

Dirty street fighting is at the heart of Obama’s organizing. While he stands above the fray, his minions at ACORN are threatening, intimidating, confronting and even committing voter fraud. This is Alinsky’s end-justifies-means morality in action. Whatever it takes to win the revolution.

Obama needs more agitators, so he’s set up these camps to train them.

ACORN has the minority communities covered, while the camps are churning out mostly coed organizers. The Chicago program has already trained some 2,000 agitators to go back to their college campuses and reproduce more Obama clones.

No campaign has been successful at mobilizing students to vote en masse. But Obama hired the founder of MTV’s Rock the Vote to organize students and train them to use Alinsky tactics on campuses in battleground states.

They have been training these students since the primaries. They in turn are registering fellow students in droves to vote, while creating massive phone banks to help get out the vote on Election Day. Meanwhile, ACORN is registering thousands of minorities to vote in key states.

Such potential new voters don’t show up in the national polls of “likely voters,” which show a relatively tight race, because they’ve never voted and don’t show on past rolls.

If they turn out at the polls on Nov. 4, it could translate into a landslide for Obama.

If he can garner better than 50% of the popular vote, he can claim a mandate for his radical agenda.

What’s more, all these first-time minority and student voters wouldn’t vote for just Obama. They’d also more than likely vote down-ballot for other Democrats, padding their majorities in Congress.

If Democrats score supermajorities, filibuster-proofing the Senate, Obama could get most of his agenda rammed through in the first 100 days, surely in the first two years, before Americans could get a chance to check Democrat power in the midterm election of 2010.

How much damage could they do? Well, look at how much damage the Clintonistas did. We’re now seeing the financial fruits of their social experiment to apply affirmative action to the lending business. Obama plans to conduct a far more radical social experiment.

Few during this long campaign have wanted to talk about Obama’s days as a community organizer or his ties to radicals, because they didn’t want to raise the S word. Well, guess what? The avoidance has given him license to apply his organizing skills on a mass scale.

It made the difference in the primaries when he beat the Clinton machine, and it may now make the difference in the general election.

Not calling attention to Alinsky and the other socialists behind the Obama movement has even allowed creation of camps to indoctrinate American youth.

If John McCain hopes to win, he’ll have to act as ruthlessly as Obama’s campers.

He can start by exposing for voters the socialist underpinnings of community organizing.

 

Networks nervous over election night exit polls

Polling place surveys frequently overstated Obama vote during primaries

updated 3:10 p.m. ET, Fri., Oct. 3, 2008

NEW YORK – Barack Obama’s tendency through the Democratic primaries to perform better in exit polls than he actually does at the ballot box has some media organizations nervous heading into Election Night.

Television networks want to avoid having their performance become an issue for the third straight presidential election. Their political experts hope that experience gained during the primaries will help things run smoothly Nov. 4.

ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, Fox News Channel and The Associated Press pool resources to conduct exit polls in select precincts, hoping to glean information about why people vote the way they do and to help predict a winner or loser. A combination of actual vote counts and exit polls is generally used to “call” a state for one candidate or another.

Exit polls frequently overstated Obama’s vote during the primaries by as much as 3 percentage points.

“We’re concerned about it, but not, ‘Oh, my god, the exit polls are going to be wrong,”’ said NBC Political director Chuck Todd. “We’re aware it’s an issue and we’re doing everything we can to correct it during our survey work.” (Msnbc.com is a joint venture between NBC and Microsoft.)

Well-educated and young voters are more likely to agree to fill out an exit-poll survey, and both these groups have tended to favor Obama, the experts said.

Enthusiastic voters are also more likely to seek out pollsters, or at least not go out of their way to avoid them. That was true about Obama during the primaries, just as it was for Republican Pat Buchanan during the 1992 New Hampshire primary, said Kathleen Frankovic, CBS News director of surveys.

Danger of calling the race too soon
It was the exit polls’ overstatement of John Kerry’s support in 2004 that caused problems for the networks, particularly when the first wave of results were leaked on the Web. That led to a “quarantine room” reform that will be in place this year; the people with access to poll results are locked away until at least 5 p.m. EST, giving them time to check for any problems and keeping the early numbers from conveying false information and possibly affecting turnout.

The problems were more serious in 2000, when networks prematurely “called” Florida, and thus the election, for George Bush. It led to a congressional investigation into their practices.

For the Obama-McCain contest, there’s concern about whether some voters will say they voted for Obama but, for racial reasons, actually didn’t.

Frankovic said this was a real issue for pollsters years ago, but studies show it has virtually gone away. The false reporting was more pronounced when voters were actually interviewed by pollsters, but the current exit poll is a paper survey that voters fill out in private. It was only in the Northeast that Todd said he saw false reporting problems during the primaries.

A presidential election with a black man leading the ticket is uncharted territory for the United States, however.

Who talks to pollsters?
In general, Republicans tend to be less enthusiastic than Democrats about taking exit polls. An unknown this season will be whether resentment toward the media fomented by John McCain’s campaign will make his supporters even less willing to “help” them by taking a survey.

The smallest of factors can play a role in the makeup of a poll; some older voters, for instance, are uncomfortable dealing with young pollsters, and are turned off if they’re standing near partisan demonstrators. News organizations this week sued the state of Minnesota to block a state law that would keep pollsters more than 100 feet from a polling place.

Simply knowing all of this will help the news organizations be ready, the experts said.

“I wouldn’t overstate the concerns,” said Dan Merkle, decision-desk director for ABC News. “They are the kinds of things we’ve seen before with different elections and different candidates.”

  

Kathleen Carroll, executive editor of The Associated Press, said she’s aware of the issues but isn’t worried about the Election Night performance. In states where a race is close, the AP relies on vote counts to pick a winner, she said.

“The AP has never run out and called a close race based on exit polls,” Carroll said. Where they can be used to make a call is when the exit polls confirm pre-election polls in contests that are lopsided, she said.

 

  

Poll: McCain has slight lead in Ohio over Obama

By The Associated Press – 6 hours agoTHE POLL: The Ohio Newspaper Poll, presidential race, likely Ohio voters (20 electoral votes).

THE NUMBERS: John McCain 48 percent, Barack Obama 42 percent.

OF INTEREST: Almost half of Ohio voters, or 47 percent, say they are worse off than four years ago. About one-third, 34 percent, said they were the same, while 19 percent said they were better off. The candidates have lined up support within their own party, with 85 percent of Republicans saying they would vote for McCain and 81 percent of Democrats in favor of Obama. Obama has the edge among independent voters, 38 percent to 33 percent for McCain, with 19 percent still undecided.

DETAILS: Conducted from Sept. 12-16 by landline telephones among 869 likely Ohio voters. Sampling error plus or minus 3.3 percent.

MORE: http://blog.cleveland.com/openers/2008/09/ONOpoll.pdf