Sep 122008

Our misguided friends on the right do not like New York Times columnist Paul Krugman. It is not difficult to discern why. Here are the last few paragraphs of his column today, entitled “Blizzard of Lies.”

Still, how upset should we be about the McCain campaign’s lies? I mean, politics ain’t beanbag, and all that.

One answer is that the muck being hurled by the McCain campaign is preventing a debate on real issues — on whether the country really wants, for example, to continue the economic policies of the last eight years.

But there’s another answer, which may be even more important: how a politician campaigns tells you a lot about how he or she would govern.

I’m not talking about the theory, often advanced as a defense of horse-race political reporting, that the skills needed to run a winning campaign are the same as those needed to run the country. The contrast between the Bush political team’s ruthless effectiveness and the heckuva job done by the Bush administration is living, breathing, bumbling, and, in the case of the emerging Interior Department scandal, coke-snorting and bed-hopping proof to the contrary.

I’m talking, instead, about the relationship between the character of a campaign and that of the administration that follows. Thus, the deceptive and dishonest 2000 Bush-Cheney campaign provided an all-too-revealing preview of things to come. In fact, my early suspicion that we were being misled about the threat from Iraq came from the way the political tactics being used to sell the war resembled the tactics that had earlier been used to sell the Bush tax cuts.

And now the team that hopes to form the next administration is running a campaign that makes Bush-Cheney 2000 look like something out of a civics class. What does that say about how that team would run the country?

What it says, I’d argue, is that the Obama campaign is wrong to suggest that a McCain-Palin administration would just be a continuation of Bush-Cheney. If the way John McCain and Sarah Palin are campaigning is any indication, it would be much, much worse.

Why are we, well into the final two months of a very important presidential campaign, talking about lipstick on pigs and perceived slights to Sarah Palin’s dignity and femininity? Why are we not talking about our failing economy, our failing education system, people losing their homes to foreclosure (not to mention their jobs, health insurance and retirement savings), the war in Iraq and the war against terrorism? Why are we not talking about issues that really are important and really do matter to the future of the United States (if not the entire planet)?

I think you know why. Johnny McCain and Sarah Palin know that if we start talking the real issues that face our country, they lose. Big time. The Republicans aren’t stupid; they know this. It’s why they run the kinds of campaigns they do. The question becomes: Are we going to fall for it? Again?

Sep 122008

This story has to be the most hilarious yet to come out of this year’s political season. Sarah Palin is planning to ride to the White House (and take Johnny McCain with her) on the hem of Hillary Clinton’s pantsuit.

Sarah Palin Thinks Barack Obama Will Regret Not Picking Hillary Clinton

Gov. Sarah Palin says Sen. Barack Obama just might regret not picking Sen. Hillary Clinton as his vice presidential running mate.

“I think he’s regretting not picking her now, I do. What, what determination, and grit, and even grace through some tough shots that were fired her way — she handled those well,” the Alaska governor told Charles Gibson in her third and final exclusive interview with ABC News.[..]

Palin, 44, took the mantle of the campaign’s only female contender after Obama defeated Clinton for their party’s nomination and picked Sen. Joe Biden, D-Del., as his Democratic running mate over Clinton and others.

Palin has praised Clinton on the campaign trail, and when she was first introduced as Sen. John McCain’s running mate last month in Ohio.

“The women of America aren’t finished yet, and we can shatter that glass ceiling once and for all,” Palin said as she accepted McCain’s invitation to join the 2008 Republican ticket, referring to a line made famous in Clinton’s concession to Obama.

It’s no secret that the reason Mrs. Palin was selected by the Republicans to be Johnny McCain’s running mate is because she’s female and they figured she would attract a lot of disappointed Hillary fans. But to have her publicly admit it? This is just too precious.

I do believe that dear Sarah just flushed the whole McPalin campaign right down the proverbial toilet.

We know Hillary Clinton, Mrs. Palin. Hillary Clinton is a friend of ours. You, Mrs. Palin, are no Hillary Clinton.

Update: This from the AP report

Palin refused to say whether she believed homosexuality was an orientation or a choice. “I’m not one to judge,” Palin said.

Wait a minute… You mean a judgment such as that is above her pay grade?

Sep 122008

When Charlie Gibson called and asked me if I was ready to post this week’s Friday Night Cartoons, I said “You betcha!” (Charlie Gibson didn’t really call me.)

There are a lot of imitations out there, but there is one original Friday Night Cartoons.

In the event that you are a new visitor to our humble abode (Welcome!), let us explain… This is a collection of the best (in your humble editor’s opinion) political and editorial cartoons of the week just passed. Remember, your mileage may vary. You just have to click on them to make them bigger. We suggest starting with the first one and then using the icons that will appear at the bottom of your browser window to scroll through them all. Enjoy! (We will usually add a few more at some time Saturday, by the way. Feel free to drop back.)

anderson091008.jpg   bagley090908.jpg   bagley091008.jpg

bagley091108.jpg   beeler090908.jpg   bennett091008.jpg

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pitkin091208.jpg   plante091008.jpg   powell090908.gif

powell091108.jpg   rogers091208.jpg   sack090908.jpg

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As always, our thanks go to the talented and observant cartoonists who, each week, help us smile through the pain.

Saturday additions:

bagley091208.jpg   matson091208.jpg   fitzsimmons091208.jpg

cole091208.jpg   anderson091308.jpg   keefe091308.jpg

margulies091308.jpg   bennett091308.jpg   stossel091308.jpg

Sep 122008

Yep. With less then two months until the elections, I think the gloves are finally coming off. The McPalin campaign is screaming “victim” every time they turn around, and the Obama campaign is finally giving the Republicans a little taste of their own medicine. This is starting to get interesting. And fun.

Here are the two new ads the Obama campaign came out with today. The first defines what change really is and the second explains why we cannot have a president, especially in this day and age, who is technologically illiterate…

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(Either JavaScript is not active or you are using an old version of Adobe Flash Player. Please install the newest Flash Player.)

I’ll let Pickler tell you all about them (in her usual bipartisanical fashion).

P.S. Remember up top about how I mentioned the Republicans crying “victim” all the time? Well… the latest ad from the McCain camp is nothing but a big whine about how Barack Obama has “disrespected” Sarah Palin. Give me a break! What was that line Hillary Clinton used on Senator Obama back in January? Wasn’t it something about getting out of the kitchen if you can’t stand the heat? Perhaps it’s time for Johnny and the Republicans to get out of the kitchen.

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(That ad, by the way, was about as racist as you can possibly get. Are they seriously accusing a black man of “disrespecting” a white woman? Is there supposed to be some kind of secret code in there for us “gentlemen of the south?” Senator McCain approves this message? I think Senator McCain owes Senator Obama an apology. Big time.)

Update: From Obama campaign manager David Plouffe…

“Today is the first day of the rest of the campaign, and today we are releasing two new ads that go directly at the fundamental issue in this race: John McCain is out of touch with the American people and unable to address the challenges facing the country in the 21st century and bring about real change, and that Barack Obama is the candidate who will bring about change that works for the middle class.

We will respond with speed and ferocity to John McCain’s attacks and we will take the fight to him, but we will do it on the big issues that matter to the American people. We will not allow John McCain and his band of Karl Rove disciples to make this big election about small things.”