Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Democrat Sen. Bob Menendez Rumored Sex Scandal With Dominican Prostitutes?

Drudge Report had the headline earlier, "SEX SCANDAL TO HIT CAMPAIGN..."

And at The Other McCain, "BOB MENENDEZ AND HOOKERS?"
UPDATE: Shortly after the Drudge Report headline went up, my associate Ali Akbar got a tip that the story involved Sen. Menendez of New Jersey and at least one prostitute with whom he trysted on a taxpayer-funded trip to the Dominican Republic. Within one hour, Akbar had confirmed this with other sources, and we understand that numerous reporters in D.C. have heard similar reports.

Check the Daily Caller for the breaking report, and at AoSHQ, "What I'm Hearing About The Sex Scandal":
Here's what I'm hearing. And bear in mind, I'm merely hearing it.

The story involves a Senator flying down to a big donor's place in the Caribbean for orgies. Hookers are involved.

The One Big Snag in the story is that the story comes from hookers -- a couple of them, I hear -- and their credibility is, well. They're hookers. It's not Gold Standard.

Well, I guess I shouldn't call them "hookers." Let's say "escorts."

Escorts, for your penis.
UPDATE: Folks should check Ace of SpadesHQ on Twitter. He's got a lot of newsy updates, especially some thoughts on the delays.

And check this earlier entry at Twitchy, "Matt Drudge teases campaign sex scandal; Twitter speculates; Update: ‘Powerful senator’; Update: Menendez?"

BREAKING: Here's the report, "Women: Sen. Bob Menendez paid us for sex in the Dominican Republic."

A Brutal Polling Day? Not for Mitt Romney

I guess folks on the left don't really look at survey internals, which is odd, since all these drive-by commenters keep saying conservatives can't do math. Looks the other way around, frankly. A good example is this report at TPM, "After Brutal Polling Day, Romney Team Reassures That They’ll Win" (at Memeorandum).

And the evidence for these so-called "brutal" numbers for Romney? Well, an obvious outlier at National Journal that has Obama up 50-45 when no other national poll of any repute shows a spread in Obama's favor like that. Even the hopelessly Democrat-heavy New York Times/Quinnipiac poll today had a miniscule Obama edge at 48-47. And on Monday Pew Research had the race deadlocked at 47 percent, with a turnout edge for Romney.

TPM's also claiming Obama's up by five in Ohio, which is again relying on the Times/Quinnipiac survey for the Buckeye State. But as I noted this morning, NYT's Ohio numbers are badly off, way out of line with both 2008 exit polling data on Democrat and Republican turnout, as well as likely turnout numbers for the GOP this year with the enthusiasm gap taken into consideration. Bryan Preston has more on that, "That Q Poll Showing Obama Up by Five in Ohio Has a Flaw (Updated: PPP Too?)." (PPP is the far-left Kos pollster, which almost always favors Democrats and is thus widely discredited.) See Ed Morrissey on those NYT numbers as well, "Final CBS/NYT/Q-polls in OH, FL, VA show Obama up …":
In each of these three states, the CBS/NYT/Q-poll shows Republicans at a lower percentage level of turnout than in the 2008 election. If one makes that assumption, it’s not too difficult to be guess that Obama might be ahead. However, that’s exactly the opposite of what all other polls rating enthusiasm are telling us what the electorate will look like on Tuesday. In fact, it’s not even what this poll shows, with Republican enthusiasm +16 over Democrats in Florida, +14 in Ohio, and +7 in Virginia.
And to round things off, here's the poll from the University of Cincinnati's Institute for Policy Research on Ohio, which has Obama up 48-46 with a partisan breakdown of D-45, R-43 percent, and I-12 (and note that independents here, who are breaking for Romney in all other polls, are probably under-sampled, to say nothing of the over-sampled Democrats).

So, it's not Mitt Romney who's having a "brutal polling day." If anything, it's the truth that's having a "brutal honesty day." Polling methodology (i.e., math) is not hard. If progressives get it they're not letting on, which is even worse from an integrity standpoint.

Hurricane Sandy Won't Save President 'I' Candy

From Dick Morris, "Here comes the landslide":

Voters have figured out that President Obama has no message, no agenda and not even much of an explanation for what he has done over the past four years. His campaign is based entirely on persuading people that Mitt Romney is a uniquely bad man, entirely dedicated to the rich, ignorant of the problems of the average person. As long as he could run his negative ads, the campaign at least kept voters away from the Romney bandwagon. But once we all met Mitt Romney for three 90-minute debates, we got to know him — and to like him. He was not the monster Obama depicted, but a reasonable person for whom we could vote.

As we stripped away Obama’s yearlong campaign of vilification, all the president offered us was more servings of negative ads — ads we had already dismissed as not credible. He kept doing the same thing even as it stopped working.

The result was that the presidential race reached a tipping point. Reasonable voters saw that the voice of hope and optimism and positivism was Romney while the president was only a nitpicking, quarrelsome, negative figure. The contrast does not work in Obama’s favor...
Continue reading. And then compare to MoDo, "The ‘I’ of the Storm" (at Memeorandum).

Presidential Race Too Close to Call in Final Week

The New York Times still has Obama up by 5 in Ohio, which at this point in the race is a complete joke.

And here's the Times' report for its nationwide poll, "Obama and Romney in Exceedingly Close Race, Poll Finds":

COLUMBUS, Ohio — President Obama and Mitt Romney enter the closing week of the campaign in an exceedingly narrow race, according to the latest poll by The New York Times and CBS News, with more voters now viewing Mr. Romney as a stronger leader on the economy and Mr. Obama as a better guardian of the middle class.

The president is holding his coalition together with strong support from women and minority voters and is supported by 48 percent of likely voters nationwide, the poll found, while Mr. Romney holds a wide advantage among independents and men and is the choice of 47 percent.

The race for the White House, which has been interrupted by the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy’s deadly assault on the East Coast, is heading toward an uncertain conclusion. The president was set to stay off the campaign trail for a third straight day to tour storm damage on Wednesday with Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey, a Republican. Mr. Romney was set to resume a full schedule in Florida.

In the final days, the most intense competition between Mr. Obama and Mr. Romney has narrowed to seven states, but the national poll illustrates why the Romney campaign is working to expand the battleground and seize upon the deep concern in the electorate about whether the president should win a second term.
The Times has been oversampling Democrats, so it's probably not as "close" as the report suggests.

Campaign Resumes After Pause for Hurricane

At the Wall Street Journal, "Race Is Back On After Storm Hiatus":

Hurricane Sandy Voting

As the ruinous force of Sandy begins to diminish, the nominal pause it created in the presidential election campaign is about to fade away.

President Barack Obama continued his detour from the campaign trail Tuesday to focus on storm response. Republican Mitt Romney set aside a planned political rally in favor of a relief event to help storm victims. Both asked supporters to make donations to the Red Cross.

But a presidential campaign racing toward its conclusion next week is taking little more than a short break to acknowledge the storm's impact.

Even as Mr. Romney and Mr. Obama canceled political appearances Tuesday, the two campaigns escalated a heated exchange over Mr. Romney's suggestion that the president's auto bailout had benefited China, rather than U.S. autoworkers. With new TV ad buys, Mr. Romney and his allies also pushed to enlarge the set of competitive states to include Pennsylvania, long an elusive prize for the Republican nominees.

Mr. Romney will return to his schedule of campaign appearances Wednesday in hopes of regaining the momentum many polls showed he had built in recent weeks. Mr. Obama is scheduled to follow suit on Thursday, after more time in Washington and a tour of storm damage in New Jersey, as he juggles the political rewards and risks of focusing on the government disaster response.

Northeast states grappled with how to make sure voting next week isn't unduly affected by the storm. With widespread power outages, flooding and blocked roads, officials said they may have to move or consolidate some polling locations. Connecticut gave voters two extra days to register while Maryland said it may have to resort to paper ballots for some locations due to power outages, which could delay the vote count.
For Mr. Obama, the turn to disaster management paid a surprising political dividend when he won praise on Tuesday from New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, a Republican who has been a scathing critic of his presidency.

"The president has been great," Mr. Christie, who represents Mr. Romney at campaign events, said on MSNBC. "The president has been all over this and he deserves great credit." It was one of several television interviews in which Mr. Christie praised Mr. Obama, who will tour New Jersey storm damage Wednesday with the governor.
He's been great, alright --- at never letting a crisis go to waste.

Obama to Tour Storm-Damaged New Jersey

At the Hill, "Odd couple Christie and Obama to tour devastated NJ shore." (Via Memeorandum.)

Christie said he couldn't care less about politics right now. Interesting, because Obama couldn't care more. See Howard Kurtz, "President Obama’s New Jersey Gambit Centers on Hurricane Sandy Relief."


And see Rick Moran, at American Thinker, "Left sees Sandy as an opportunity to push for bigger government,"

Image: People's Cube.

Barack Obama and Other Has-Beens

You have to read this in full, the best ever essay from Bret Stephens, at the Wall Street Journal.

Sandy's Death Toll Now 50

The Los Angeles Times reports, "Northeast faces long road back; death toll at 50":
BEACH HAVEN, N.J. -- Sandy’s departure from the Northeast on Tuesday brought no hint of relief, revealing instead a tableau of splintered trees, severed beaches, shuttered businesses and the harsh reality that the storm will test even the most hardened resolve in weeks to come.

The U.S. death toll rose to 50, including three children, and estimates of the property damage soared to $20 billion, which would make Sandy among the nation’s costliest natural disasters. More than 8 million homes and businesses in 17 states were without power, half of them in New York and New Jersey. Some outages could stretch into next week.
And see the Wall Street Journal, "Power Outages May Last Over a Week," and "State-by-State Toll, Including Power Outages."

Big Storm Opportunism

At the Wall Street Journal:
Our former editor Robert Bartley once quipped (fondly) about the writer Jude Wanniski that he thought a capital-gains tax cut could intercept a Soviet SS-20 missile in mid-flight. We were reminded of that monomania Tuesday as the political left more or less declared in unison that the ravages of Hurricane Sandy prove that America needs bigger government.

We know liberals are worried that President Obama might lose next week, but are they so panicky that they want to suggest even before the storm has passed that Mitt Romney and Republicans are against disaster relief? Apparently so. It's an especially low-rent tactic, akin to blaming the tea party for Jared Lee Loughner's shooting of Gabby Giffords. But it's equally absurd to argue that a once-in-a-century storm means you can't block-grant Medicaid.

The rap on Mr. Romney seems to be that he once said emergency management could be done well and perhaps better at the state level, and he also endorsed Paul Ryan's House Republican budget.

Let's look at the record. Regarding the budget for FEMA (the Federal Emergency Management Agency), Mr. Obama's own fiscal 2013 budget sought $10.008 billion. That was a cut of $641.5 million, or 6.02%, from fiscal 2012. We couldn't find an apples-to-apples comparison in the Ryan budget resolution, because FEMA spending was part of a larger category and the Senate never did pass its budget. But if budget cuts to FEMA are the liberal standard, their beef is with Mr. Obama. By the way, Mr. Romney says he doesn't want to abolish FEMA.

None of which means that FEMA is above reform. Matt Mayer of the Heritage Foundation has found that annual FEMA disaster declarations have multiplied since the Clinton years and have reached a yearly average of 153 under Mr. Obama. That compares to 129.6 under George W. Bush, 89.5 under Mr. Clinton, and only 28 a year under Reagan. Mr. Mayer argues that taxpayers and storm victims would be better served if FEMA devoted itself to helping out in the biggest disasters, such as Sandy, and not dive in at every political request for assistance.

As for Mr. Romney and FEMA, the liberals are excavating remarks from one of the early GOP debates. CNN's John King asked if "the states should take on more" of a role in disaster relief as FEMA was running out of money.

Mr. Romney: "Absolutely. Every time you have an occasion to take something from the federal government and send it back to the states, that's the right direction. And if you can go even further and send it back to the private sector, that's even better.

"Instead of thinking in the federal budget, what we should cut—we should ask ourselves the opposite question. What should we keep? We should take all of what we're doing at the federal level and say, what are the things we're doing that we don't have to do? And those things we've got to stop doing, because we're borrowing $1.6 trillion more this year than we're taking in."

This isn't an argument for abolishing FEMA so much as it is for the traditional federalist view that the feds shouldn't supplant state action...

I wrote about those exact comments earlier, and the asshat response from the lame brains at MSNBC: "MSNBC Hate-Trolls Attack Mitt Romney's Relief Efforts for Hurricane Sandy Victims."

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Mind-Boggling Photos from Hurricane Sandy


See Atlas Shrugs, "DAMAGE."

MSNBC Hate-Trolls Attack Mitt Romney's Relief Efforts for Hurricane Sandy Victims

Noel Sheppard offers an outstanding analysis, "MSNBC Ridicules Romney for Collecting Food and Supplies for Sandy Victims":

This one is really hard to believe, even for the most biased so-called "news network" in the nation.

MSNBC on Tuesday totally trashed Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney for collecting food and supplies at a storm rally event in Ohio to be sent to victims of Hurricane Sandy (video follows with transcript and commentary)....

When the clip concluded, Bashir said, “Mayor Reed, so the Red Cross knows what it’s doing. Did he, did you detect perhaps a subtle dig there on Mr. Romney who spent today going against the guidelines established by the Red Cross and holding a campaign rally in Ohio that was dressed up like a charity drive collecting food and other supplies when the Red Cross expressly asked people not to do that?”

Imagine that. A presidential candidate who gives millions of dollars a year to charity does a storm relief event in Ohio, and an MSNBC anchor is disgusted by it because the Red Cross would prefer people donating cash.

Yet according to the Washington Post:
The stop was billed as a “storm relief” event, and attendees were asked to bring non-perishable foods and other items for those affected by the storm. Long white tables to one side of the cavernous James S. Trent Arena were piled high with flashlights, batteries, diapers, toothbrushes, mini-deodorants, fleece blankets, cereal, toilet paper and canned goods.

Two large TV screens at the front of the venue bore the logo of the American Red Cross and the message: “Sandy: Support the Relief Effort. Text ’REDCROSS’ to 90999 to make a $10 donation.”
So besides the food and supplies that Ohioans generously donated, two large television screens asked participants to send money to the Red Cross.

But this didn’t make Bashir happy. Ditto his Obama-supporting guests.

“I think that this is just another moment where you see the clear striking difference between a president who has a heart for the American people and someone who simply wants to be president of the United States,” said Mayor Reed.

“Indeed,” replied Bashir who then asked for Peterson’s input.

“I would agree,” echoed Peterson. “It’s compassion that shows through in times like these. It’s humanity that shows through in times like these, and it just seems clear that the President, in addition to stepping up and doing what he does as Commander-in-Chief, demonstrates compassion in these remarks and in his approach to this kind of serious disaster.” “All we’ve seen from Romney and from his surrogates is all kinds of politicizing and misdirection,” Peterson continued, “and I think the American people in this sort of disastrous moment can really see in bold relief the differences between President Obama and former Governor Romney.”
There's more at the link, but note at the YouTube clip above that Bashir also slams Romney for comments he made during the GOP primary debates. Romney argued that the states could handle disaster relief, and then ultimately private businesses. This really set off the MSNBC clowns off. These idiots haven't a clue. Of course there are any number of ways to deliver disaster relief along the lines suggested by Romney. The federal government can work cooperatively with the states, helping to finance relief efforts that are performed by state and local agencies. That's hardly controversial. The progressive idiots are trying to argue that Romney just doesn't care. In fact, Romney's making the case to improve both efficiency and cost. We know from Katrina that Louisiana should have acted sooner to request federal assistance from Washington. The states have emergency contingency planning. They are the first responders. The federal government responds at the request of a state's governor. Moreover, the idea that it's always the federal government that provides relief and services is ridiculous. Private contracting for all kinds of public sector operations are routine. William Jacobson has more, at the New York Times, "Only When the States Can’t Handle a Problem":
The issue of FEMA versus states and private enterprise is not an either/or choice. The question should be how to most efficiently allocate resources both before and after unpredictable major disasters.

We currently use a model that relies on state and local government, together with private contractors, in a wide variety of situations.

Snow removal is a good example. Even in times of severe, multistate blizzards, private contractors play a critical role. State and local governments cannot put enough plows on the roads on short notice, so they maintain contractual relationships with private companies to provide the service as needed.

Similarly, in times of widespread power outage, as we have now, utility companies, not state or local governments, provide relief for downed power lines and electricity and phone interruptions. Throughout the Northeast the relief will come from these contractors, many on loan from other regions, to provide this relief.

The state/private model makes sense precisely because large-scale disasters are infrequent and unpredictable. Does it make sense to maintain a large federal inventory of personnel, equipment and supplies in this scenario?
FEMA doesn’t think so. FEMA itself maintains a registry of contractors and private resources that can be used depending on the situation, and relies on states and local governments for preparedness.

The most efficient role for the federal government is to fill in where states cannot, for example, where the damage is of such a nature that it is not amenable to state or local solutions. Hurricane damage typically is localized, and requires a street-by-street response which the federal government is ill prepared to provide. A large oil spill, by contrast, is not capable of local relief alone, and that is where federal coordination can be most effective.

So where is the controversy in Governor Romney’s statement?
There is no controversy. Romney was governor of a state on the East Coast. He knows about these kinds of public/private relationships by experience. And he knows from his private sector background that efficiency is improved by contracting and cooperative planning at different levels of government. The radical MSNBC hacks haven't the foggiest idea of these notions. Everyone's talking about this is the kind of emergency where we MUST HAVE big government. Now that's some politicization. Amazingly dishonest too, since it was the president today on television urging people to make contributions to the Red Cross, which is a private organization. See also Russell Sobel, "The Free Market Can Do a Better Job."

Aftermath of Hurricane Sandy

At the New York Post, "At least 18 people dead, nearly 1 million without power in New York metro area in Sandy's aftermath":

New Yorkers dug out from Hurricane Sandy’s carnage today, following the hellish reign of death and destruction brought on by the killer storm.

Gotham residents today, about 750,000 of them without any power, had to carefully navigate streets littered with uprooted trees, and avoid dangerous spots with downed power lines.

Sandy also sucker punched Long Island, leaving 900,000 customers -- 90 percent of Nassau and Suffolk Counties -- in the dark, according to Gov. Cuomo. Two million statewide are without power, the governor added.

“We expected an unprecedented storm impact here on New York City and that’s what we got,” Mayor Bloomberg said earlier today. “So while the worst of this storm has passed, the conditions are still dangerous.”

The mayor added: “Clearly the challenges our city faces in the coming days are enormous.”
Continue reading.

I'm going to have more in a little bit, on the politics of the hurricane. Check Memeorandum for some of the controversies. And then check back in here throughout the night.

Irvine's 'Great Park' Goes Bust

It's been a long time, but I can recall people hammering the idea of a "Great Park" in Irvine to rival New York's Central Park as far back as 2000. So now it turns out that the City of Irvine has spent millions of dollars on a regional development project that's gone literally nowhere.

Postcards from California's blue model of government.

See the Los Angeles Times, "Orange County's planned Great Park a victim of hard times":
Ten years after Orange County residents voted to turn a shuttered military base into one of America's most ambitious municipal parks, most of the land remains fenced off, looking very much like the airfield the Marines left behind.

The city of Irvine has spent at least $203 million on the project, but only 200 acres of the promised 1,347-acre Great Park has been built, and half of that is leased out for commercial farming.

Most of the money has paid for plans, designs and consultants, with less than a fifth of it going toward actual park construction, according to a Times analysis of the spending.

Now, the money to build "the first great metropolitan park of the 21st century" — as the city calls it — has just about run out, leaving Irvine leaders to contemplate radical measures: Selling off public land to raise funds or asking private business to step in and build the park for them.

The park, by now, was supposed to be filled with scores of sports fields and eventually museums, cultural centers, botanical gardens, and maybe even a university — all tucked into a bucolic landscape of forests, lawns, a lake and 60-foot-deep canyon that would be scooped from the earth once the barracks and runways were demolished.

But there are no baseball diamonds or regulation soccer fields. No canyon, no forest, no sprawling museum complex.

As much as anything, the lofty plans for the park — an expanse intended to rival San Diego's Balboa Park or even Central Park in New York — collapsed under the weight of the sagging economy...
Continue reading.

The city squandered at least $200 million on no-bid contracts and out-of-control "project" spending. And those responsible are Democrat politicians to the one, including former Irvine mayor and Democrat presidential candidate Larry Agran, who's quoted at the piece clamoring for more money:
Some city leaders said the spending on plans, public relations and events was necessary to secure a world-class design, build support for the project and entice visitors.

"We had to invest a lot to let people know there's a park coming," Irvine Mayor Sukhee Kang said.

Others, including Councilman Jeffrey Lalloway, have called the spending on plans and no-bid contracts reckless and suggested the money could have been put to better use by building ball fields and opening up more parkland.

Lalloway said he was "saddened by a potentially wonderful project that has been financially mismanaged."

He doubts whether some of master design's showpiece amenities, such as the 2.5-mile-long canyon that was to be created in the middle of the park, will ever be built.

The project's fiscal decay has left some to consider a smaller, scaled-back park or one that will be built with the help of private business.

The Anaheim Ducks, for instance, are in talks with the city to build ice skating facilities there. Another firm could build a concert venue to replace the nearby Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre.

Others, including Larry Agran — a 26-year veteran of the Irvine council and a park booster — say Irvine could raise money by selling off parkland for up to $4 million an acre, perhaps for a hotel, resort or high school.

"We own close to 1,500 acres of land free and clear and we can develop it in any way we see fit," Agran said.

Agran predicts the Great Park could be completed in 15 to 20 years, if the city can get its hands on more money.

O.C. residents will start enjoying the benefits of this fabulous park in 2032!

Just think, that's five years before Social Security's scheduled to go bankrupt. Phew!

Stunning Thomas Peterffy Ad Runs During CNN's Prime-Time Hurricane Coverage

Folks were talking about this advertisement a few weeks ago, when it was released. It's one thing watching it on YouTube with all the other political ads. It's quite another seeing it run during the 8:00 prime-time news coverage on CNN, when folks nationwide are tuning-in for live updates on Hurricane Sandy.

It's really good. And word has it that Petterffy personally financed the ad buy.

President Obama Press Conference on Hurricane Sandy

Via Atlas Shrugs, "#EpicFail: President Asshat Campaigning On the Rain."

Video here.

Also from NewsBusters, "Gingrich: Obama Cancels Campaign Trips Due to Hurricane, Didn't Cancel Them Over Benghazi."

'Caught Up In You'

From last Friday's drive time, heading over to an afternoon Academic Senate meeting at the college, at The Sound L.A.:

12:02 - Stairway To Heaven by Led Zeppelin

12:10 - Refugee by Tom Petty

12:13 - One by Three Dog Night

12:16 - The Spirit Of Radio by Rush

12:26 - Cat's In The Cradle by Harry Chapin

12:30 - La Grange by Zz Top

12:33 - Listen To The Music by Doobie Brothers

12:38 - Photograph by Def Leppard

12:42 - Blackbird by Beatles

12:45 - Crazy On You by Heart

12:49 - Caught Up In You by .38 Special

Update on Billy Idol Birthday Concert

I just love this story.

PREVIOUSLY: "Billy Idol Celebrates Fan's Birthday in Seattle."

Catherine Herridge Reports New Details on Benghazi

At Fox News, "Early Briefings on Libya Strike Focused on Al Qaeda, Before Story Changed":

Two days after the deadly Libya terror attack, representatives of the FBI and National Counterterrorism Center gave Capitol Hill briefings in which they said the evidence supported an Al Qaeda or Al Qaeda-affiliated attack, Fox News has learned.

The description of the attack by those in the Sept. 13 briefings stands in stark contrast to the now controversial briefing on Capitol Hill by CIA Director David Petraeus the following day -- and raises even more questions about why Petraeus described the attack as tied to a demonstration.

The Sept. 13 assessment was based on intercepts that included individuals, believed to have participated in the attack, who were celebratory -- as well as a claim of responsibility.

FBI and NCTC also briefed that there were a series of Al Qaeda training camps just outside of Benghazi, where the attack occurred and resulted in the deaths of four Americans. The area was described as a hotbed for the militant Ansar al-Sharia as well as Al Qaeda in North Africa.

Fox News is told there was no mention of a demonstration or any significant emphasis on the anti-Islam video that for days was cited by administration officials as a motivating factor.

Fox News is told that the Petraeus briefing on Sept. 14 conflicted with that of the FBI and NCTC.

On Capitol Hill, Petraeus characterized the attack as more consistent with a flash mob, where the militants showed up spontaneously with RPGs. Petraeus downplayed to lawmakers the skill needed to fire mortars, which also were used in the attack and to some were seen as evidence of significant pre-planning. As Fox News previously reported, four mortars were fired -- two missed the annex, but the mortar team re-calibrated and the next two mortars were direct hits.

Fox News is told that Petraeus seemed wedded to the narrative that the attack was linked to a demonstration and was spontaneous as opposed to pre-meditated.

Fox News is told that Petraeus was "absolute" in his description with few, if any, caveats. As lawmakers learned more about the attack, including through raw intelligence reports, they were "angry, disappointed and frustrated" that the CIA director had not provided a more complete picture of the available intelligence.
And from Walter Russell Mead, "The Benghazi Story Refuses to Die, And It’s Hurting The President" (via Instapundit).

Deer Gets Stuck in Hurricane Surf in Monmouth County, New Jersey

Via Pat Dollard, "WATCH: Deer Trapped In Surf By Sandy":

Toronto Woman Dead After Being Struck by 'Staples' Sign During Hurricane Sandy

You just never know when your number's coming up. What a way to go.

At Toronto's Globe and Mail, "Woman dead after being hit by flying debris as Toronto braces for Sandy":

A woman in her 50s has died after flying debris hit her on the head near Keele Street and St. Clair Avenue, according to Toronto EMS.

Toronto police Staff Sergeant Bruce Morrison said the woman was walking in a parking lot when part of a sign from a nearby business became loose because of the strong wind and fell. The woman was pronounced dead at the scene around 7:30 p.m.

Toronto started feeling the effects of Hurricane Sandy earlier on Monday, with winds in the Greater Toronto Area blowing at just over 60 kilometres per hour, according to Geoff Coulson, a warning preparedness meteorologist at Environment Canada. As the region braces for an overnight onslaught of heavy wind and rain, the City of Toronto is asking residents to remove loose items outdoors and be prepared for prolonged power outages, in what could be the worst storm in decades.

“We are expecting very strong winds – in some situations up to 90 kilometres an hour – and some heavy, heavy rainfall,” Mayor Rob Ford said Monday afternoon at a hastily organized news conference.
And see Blazing Cat Fur, "No you won't see Manhattan like that often..."

NewsBusted: 'Voting for Obama is Like Losing Your Virginity...'

An inspired episode, via NewsBusters:

PETA Wants Roadside Memorial for 1,600 Pounds of Live Fish Killed in Irvine Car Crash


At the Los Angeles Times, "PETA wants memorial where fish died in Irvine car crash":
On behalf of a leading animal rights group, an Irvine woman is asking the city to erect a memorial at the street corner where 1,600 pounds of live fish died this month when a container truck was involved in a three-vehicle crash.

Dina Kourda, a volunteer with People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, wrote to the Irvine Public Works Department to request that a sign be placed at the intersection of Walnut and Yale avenues to honor the lives of the fish -- believed to be saltwater bass -- lost in the accident.

The fish, the Orange County Register reported, were being hauled to a Ranch 99 Market, an Asian supermarket.

The fish had been stored in large tanks that cracked open as a result of the Oct. 11 accident. When firefighters opened the back of the truck, some fish flopped out, and others had already died. None of the people involved in the accident were seriously injured.

“Although such signs are traditionally reserved for human fatalities, I hope you’ll make an exception because of the enormous suffering involved in this case, in order to remind drivers that all animals – whether they’re humans, basset hounds or bass--value their lives and feel pain,” Kourda wrote.
Well, let's cut to the chase:
Craig Reem, a spokesman with the city of Irvine, said he was not familiar with the city’s procedure for dealing with such a request.

“I do think it’s fair to say we have no plans to erect a memorial,” he said.
You think?

The crash site is just down the street from my oldest boy's high school. I'm sure he'll be just crushed at the longs odds for a fish memorial at the site.

Labor Department to Delay Friday Jobs Report Until After Election?

Well, Hilda Solis is Labor Secretary, a hopelessly corrupt gravy-train Democrat if there ever was one. And this is the Obama administration, which boasts a virtually unprecedented culture of corruption. So, I won't be surprised at all.

At the Wall Street Journal, "UPDATE: Labor Department ‘Working Hard’ to Ensure Jobs Report Released on Time."

Gallup Shows Romney Up 52-46 Among Early Voters

Actually, Gallup has Romney up all around, but early voting's a leading indicator.



Monday, October 29, 2012

Hurricane Sandy Carves Path of Destruction Across U.S. East Coast

At the Wall Street Journal, "Millions Are Without Power and Thousands Are Stranded; Atlantic City Is Submerged; Death Toll Is Expected to Rise":
Superstorm Sandy carved a harrowing path of destruction through the East Coast on Monday, inundating Atlantic City and sending cars floating through the streets of lower Manhattan.

Accelerating Monday evening as it made landfall on the New Jersey coast, the storm promised a legacy as one of the most damaging ever to menace the Northeast, from North Carolina to New England.

Some 3.1 million people were left without electricity across the region Monday evening—the most since the 2003 blackout. In New York, more than 250,000 Con Ed customers from 39th Street south were left without power. One of the city's major hospitals was forced to evacuate patients late Monday when its backup power system failed.

"It's sure shaping up to be a storm that will be historic in nature," said Louis Uccellini, director of the National Centers for Environmental Prediction, a federal government agency.

The storm left a trail of death, and the toll is expected to mount. Two people perished in Mendham, N.J., when a tree struck their car, officials said. In New York state, at least six were killed, including a 30-year-old man who died when a tree fell on his home.
Continue reading.

And at CNN, "Sandy ravages N.Y., N.J."

Nate Silver Fast on His Way to One-Term Celebrity

Robert Stacy McCain's in Ohio hoping to get in a decent bit of reporting, despite the political disruptions caused by Hurricane Sandy. See, "FROM OHIO: Schedule Scrambled; Obama, Romney Cancel Campaign Events," and "SCENES FROM ROMNEY-RYAN RALLY."

But we're in luck. Jonathan Tobin is pulling suicide watch at Commentary, "Infallible Election Prognosticators Tend to Have Brief Careers":
Back in May 2011, the leading liberal poll analyst of this election cycle returned to his roots in an op-ed published in the New York Times. Nate Silver, who had parlayed a brilliant record as an independent numbers cruncher in the 2008 presidential election into a gig as the paper’s political blogger in the age of Obama, first made his name as a writer as a baseball guy and one of the leading exponents of new and advanced ways of looking at baseball statistics. On May 9, 2011, Silver penned a piece for the Times explaining why New York Yankees captain Derek Jeter was finished as a baseball star. Given that that the Yankees shortstop had an uncharacteristically mediocre 2010 season and was off to a slow start in 2011, it was hard to argue with Silver’s conclusion.

Except the very same day that Silver was planting Jeter’s tombstone in the Times, the future Hall-of-Famer got four hits, including two home runs in a game. I noted this embarrassing development in a blog post here titled, “The Perils of Punditry: That’s Why They Play the Games.” For my pains, I was subjected to a chorus of abuse via e-mail and Twitter from Silver’s fans, most of which knew nothing about Sabermetrics. Indeed, another Times blogger noted my criticism (which was laced with respect for Silver’s work on both baseball and politics) and ironically noted, “the jury was out” on whether the results of “one game” could disprove the great Nate.

The jury was out in May, but within a few months, Silver’s fans would be dropping that prediction of his down the proverbial memory hole as Jeter put together a stellar second half of 2011 and followed it up with a brilliant 2012 in which he led the Major Leagues in base hits. That didn’t mean Silver didn’t know what he was talking about, but it was proof that a proper understanding of what has already happened didn’t necessarily give even the smartest of researchers the ability to predict the future. Fast forward to the last days of the 2012 presidential election campaign, and it looks like that day in May wasn’t the only time Silver’s crystal ball has clouded up.
Continue reading.


* "Akron Beacon Poll Finds Ohio Dead Heat at 49-49 — Presidential Race Tighter Than Obama's A**hole in a Prison Shower."

* "Nate Silver: Voice of the New Castrati."

* "If Bias Doesn't Matter Why Would Bill Maher Host Nate Silver on 'Real Time'?"

* "Oh My! Romney Back Up to 51 Percent in Gallup's Daily Tracking — Nate Silver Hardest Hit!"

* "'Grand Swami' Nate Silver Boosts O's Chances to 71.0% in Electoral College!"

* "Obama Crashing in Ohio; or, For the Love of Mercy, Leave Nate Silver Alone!"

* "Nate Silver Calls It: Advantage Obama!"

* "Nate Silver's Flawed Model."

* "Boom! Romney Back Up 52-45 in Gallup's Daily Tracking of Likely Voters."

* "ABC News Touts Nate Silver's Prediction That Obama's Handicapped at 68 Percent Chance to Win!"

* "'It's becoming increasingly obvious that Silver can't be taken seriously...'"

* "Nate Silver Blows Gasket as Gallup Shows Romney Pulling Away in the Presidential Horse Race."

More later...

ADDED: There's more at Memeorandum, for example, from Elspeth Reeve "People Who Can't Do Math Are So Mad At Nate Silver." And Tim Stanley, at Telegraph UK, "Nate Silver is partisan and wrong. The voters will decide Romney v Obama, not The New York Times":
In the history of presidential elections, has there ever been such an effort by one side to poll their way to victory? While the Republicans have spoken this season about jobs and debt – willing themselves to a moral victory – the Democrats have talked constantly about how well their guy is polling in one or two states. The goal is to create a sense of inevitability, to convince the public to vote for Obama because he’s a winner and who wouldn’t want to vote for the winner? We’ve witnessed the evolution of polling from an objective gauge of the public mood to a propaganda tool: partisan and inaccurate.

Step forward Nate Silver of the New York Times. Nate has been an open supporter of the President and his newspaper just endorsed Obama (although it also went for Dukakis, so it ain’t that good at picking winners). But context doesn’t matter because maths is maths and maths can’t lie – and Nate says that, according to his model, Obama has a 74.6 per cent chance of winning. You might find that figure a little odd given that on the same page you’ll see that Obama is ahead by less than 3 per cent nationally and his advantage lies in one state, Ohio. It’s even odder when you consider how it conflicts with other polls that emerged this weekend giving a virtual tie in Wisconsin and Minnesota. It’s damn near-surreal when you discover that Gallup puts Romney ahead by four points among (and this distinction is critical) likely voters. Meanwhile, Obama’s job approval rating is heading downwards. Does Nate know something that the rest of the world doesn’t?
Actually, no. Nate Silver's an idiot, plain an simple, the mouthpiece for the "New Castrati."

Continue reading about the polling clown wonder boy.

STILL MORE: At Legal Insurrection, "If Nate Silver cannot be wrong, how can he be right?":
I find the whole focus on Silver and his presidential election “model” to be particularly annoying...
Well, Silver's obvious bias is annoying, but RTWT.

Support Crashes for California's Proposition 30

The Los Angeles Times released a number of poll findings over the last week, but I've been focused on national politics. The raw survey is here. And here's the write-up on the tanking support for this ridiculous tax-hike initiative, "Support plunges for Prop. 30, Gov. Jerry Brown's tax initiative":

SACRAMENTO — Support has plunged for Proposition 30, Gov. Jerry Brown's plan to raise billions of dollars in taxes, a new USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times poll shows, with less than half of voters planning to cast ballots in favor of the measure.

Only 46% of registered voters now support Brown's initiative, a 9-point drop over the last month, and 42% oppose it. The findings follow a lackluster month of campaigning by the governor, who had spent little time on the stump and found himself fighting off attacks from backers of a separate ballot measure that would raise taxes for schools.

Although Brown recently launched a frantic push for votes, both proposals could fail. Tax measures rarely gain support in the closing days of a campaign.

Proposition 30 would temporarily raise taxes on individuals earning more than $250,000 a year and impose a quarter-cent hike in the state sales tax. Enthusiasm for the governor's plan has fallen across the political spectrum.

The steepest decline is among voters who register without a party preference — a crucial voting bloc for Brown. Support from those Californians dropped from 63% a month ago to 48%.

"Proposition 30 has been under attack from the left and the right," said Dan Schnur, director of the Jesse M. Unruh Institute of Politics at USC. "It has taken a toll."

The USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences/Los Angeles Times poll surveyed 1,504 registered voters by telephone from Oct. 15 to Oct. 21. It was conducted by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research, a Democratic firm, in conjunction with American Viewpoint, a Republican company. The margin of error is 2.9 percentage points.
The Los Angeles Times editorial page endorsed the measure, mainly because the initiative's funding doesn't have to be spent on education! But see the Stockton Record, "Proposition 30 is voter manipulation at its finest":
Gov. Brown and proponents of Prop. 30 make it seem like Prop. 30 requires education cuts by saying that the initiative prevents them. But, there is nothing in Prop. 30 that mandates funding cuts to education if it doesn't pass. The governor and the Legislature can change the budget at any time. They have made a choice to cut education. This is voter manipulation at its finest. The message the governor is sending is essentially this: "Give us more money or we're taking it out on schools."

Sacramento politicians are notorious for poor budgeting. Voting yes on Prop. 30 sends a message that we are OK with the tax-and-spend system that is crippling California. We all want good schools, but Prop. 30 doesn't help them. Prop 30 is another ploy from Sacramento politicians to get us to hand over more of our tax dollars. This November, Californians must say enough is enough. Vote no on Prop. 30.

Young Voters Burned Out on Barack

Well, the Millenials are fried, but hey, Team O's plugging away for the next generation of Obamabots!

See the Los Angeles Times, "Young voters' lack of fervor hurting Obama":

BOULDER, Colo. — They turned out in huge numbers and overwhelmingly cast their ballots for Barack Obama, voting not just for a politician but the leader of a cause that seemed both epic and transformational.

But four years later, many young voters — facing high unemployment and diminished dreams — regard the presidential race as a less-than-inspiring choice between two thoroughly conventional candidates.

There is little doubt Obama will again win a majority of the youth vote against Republican Mitt Romney, as Democrats have in all but three presidential elections since 18-year-olds started voting in 1972.

The more important question is whether the turnout matches that of 2008, a factor that could decide the outcome in several battleground states — North Carolina, Virginia and Colorado among them — and ultimately determine who wins the White House on Nov. 6.

Luke DeGregori, a University of Colorado physics student, is typical. The lanky 19-year-old couldn't vote four years ago, but remembers the enthusiasm surrounding Obama's historic candidacy. His parents had a yard sign outside their Denver home and Obama bumper stickers on both their cars. Today, DeGregori, a Democrat, drives one of those cars and keeps the bumper sticker "because I still kind of support Obama."

He is disappointed, though, that the president turned out to be "just another conformist politician."

"Most friends I know are kind of like me," DeGregori said, pausing between decorating classrooms for a campus Halloween party. "They're going to vote for Obama, but it's not an enthusiastic vote. It's just we prefer Obama over Romney.

Pat Caddell on Jeanine Pirro Fox News Weekend


BONUS: "Media Blackout: Aside from FOX, Sunday News Hosts Fail to Raise Benghazi."

Obama's Cult of Progressive 'Hope and Change' Comes Crashing Down

From Glenn Reynolds, at the New York Post, "Broken promises: O has dashed lefties’ hopes":
As the 2012 presidential campaign winds to a close — it’s mostly about Big Bird and binders, apparently — it’s hard to recall the heady days of 2008. But thinking back, things have really gone downhill.

Four years ago, remember, we were told that electing Barack Obama as president would bring about an unprecedented degree of racial healing, and usher in a postracial society to match our new postracial president.

Foreigners would love us — Arabs and Third-Worlders because he was black with an Arabic name; Europeans because he wasn’t George W. Bush.
Bush’s ginned up “War On Terror” would fade away, extrajudicial killings would stop, Guantanamo would close and there would be no more undeclared wars in foreign lands. Our diplomats would be respected, and the world would be our oyster.

At home, the hypercompetent Obama would review budgets line-by-line for waste, fight pork and cut the deficit in half by his first term. We’d have unprecedented government transparency, and a new, post-partisan political style in which rational argument would replace division and name-calling. The drug war would ease, and those nasty Bush-era warrantless wiretaps would cease.

Also, under the enlightened economic stewardship of the Obama administration, the economy would recover, unemployment would be held down and housing would recover.

Well, not so much....

I think the expectations were a little high to begin with, but O's been pretty much fail all around.

Monster Storm Targets East

At the Wall Street Journal, "Coastal Residents Evacuated, Flights Canceled as Hurricane Sandy Approaches":

Hurricane Sandy loomed Sunday over the northeastern U.S., triggering evacuation orders for hundreds of thousands of residents, the cancellation of nearly 8,000 airline flights and the mass closure of schools and public transit systems, as authorities warned of heavy rains, high winds and flooding when the storm reaches land late Monday or early Tuesday.

The Category 1 hurricane was forecast to drop 8 inches of rain on northeastern North Carolina and up to a foot in parts of the mid-Atlantic states over the next few days. Forecasters described a storm footprint expected to stretch from Washington, D.C., north to Philadelphia, New York City and Boston. The National Weather Service said two cold fronts, one west of Hurricane Sandy and another north, were drawing the warm-air hurricane toward the populous coast and expected to fortify Sandy's reach and intensity.

The unusual weather confluence will turn Sandy into a post-tropical cyclone, or nor'easter, unleashing record low-pressure readings and wind gusts to 70 miles an hour as far inland as western Pennsylvania and western New York, the National Weather Service said.
More at that top link.

And at CNN, "Sandy disrupts campaigns; impact on race too early to tell."

Also at Instapundit, "FOR SANDY UPDATES, follow Brendan Loy on Twitter." And Memeorandum.

Obama's Independent Problem

From Chris Cillizza, at the Washington Post:

Bump in the Road
President Obama has a problem with independents. And it’s not a small problem.

In the last three releases of the tracking poll conducted by The Washington Post and ABC News, Obama has trailed former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney among independent voters by between 16 and 20 percentage points.

That’s a striking reversal from 2008, when Obama won independent voters, who made up 29 percent of the electorate, by eight points over Sen. John McCain of Arizona.

And if Romney’s large margin among independents holds, it will be a break not just from 2008 but also from 2000 and 2004. In 2000, Texas Gov. George W. Bush won independents by 47 percent to 45 percent over Vice President Al Gore. Four years later, Bush and Sen. John F. Kerry of Massachusetts essentially split unaffiliated voters, according to exit polls — 48 percent for Bush to 49 percent for Kerry. (Independents made up 27 percent of the vote in 2000 and 26 percent in 2004.)
Okay, but don't get cocky, as Glenn Reynolds always says.

'I Pledge'


The creepy original is here.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Giants Win World Series After Sweeping Tigers

Some of the most dominating baseball I've ever seen.

The New York Times reports:
On 1-1, Cabrera goes fishing for a breaking ball away and misses, 1-2. Takes a pitch, 2-2, fouls off the next. Then Romo freezes him with a fastball for strike three, striking out the side, and the jumping, rolling, hat-throwing celebration begins in the middle of the infield.

Giants win, 4-3, in 10 innings, for their second world championship in three years.
Also at USA Today, "Giants sweep Tigers for World Series title":
12:02AM EDT October 29. 2012 - DETROIT – They took the hard, winding road to the World Series, then discovered the direct path.

The San Francisco Giants, who survived six elimination games in the playoffs, closed out a four-game sweep of the Detroit Tigers with a 4-3 victory in 10 innings Sunday night to win their second World Series in three years.

Marco Scutaro drove in Ryan Theriot with a two-out RBI single in the 10th for the winning score. Theriot had opened the inning with a single off Detroit closer Phil Coke, pitching his second inning, and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt.

Sergio Romo got the save for the Giants, who defeated the Texas Rangers in five games in 2010 for their first World Series crown since moving to San Francisco in 1958.

Pablo Sandoval, who hit three home runs in Game 1, was named MVP of the World Series.

"We're just happy right now," Buster Posey said. "This tonight was a fitting way for us to end it. Those guys played hard; they didn't stop."
Continue reading.

Sunday Cartoons

At Flopping Aces, "Sunday Funnies."

First Time

And see Reaganite Republican, "Reaganite's Sunday Funnies," and Theo Spark, "Cartoon Roundup..."

Also at Jill Stanek's, "Stanek Sunday funnies..."

CREDIT: Legal Insurrection, "Branco Cartoon – Remember In November."

World Series Rule 5

Well, the Giants could wrap up a sweep tonight, and I'm sure folks will be enjoying a few cold ones during the game, so here you go.

Beer Babes
Proof Positive starts things off with "Friday Night Babe - Alyson Hannigan!" And also, "Saturday Linkaround."

More over at Pirate's Coves, "If All You See…", and "Sorta Blogless Sunday Pinup."

And forget the hopeless left-wing idiocy, she's looking good, at WyBlog, "Obamabot Eva Longoria dumped Jets QB Mark Sanchez hours before Sunday's loss to the Patriots."

More sports at Randy's Roundtable, "Cowboys Host Giants Today." Yeah, and the Giants are up 23-7 as I write this. Bonus: Angie Harmon is live tweeting.

That's all for now. Add your Rule 5 links at the comments and I'll update!

Barack Obama's Never-Ending Lies

Dorothy Rabinowitz said it a week or so ago, "All administrations conceal, falsify and tell lies—this is understood..." But the scale of deceit in the Obama White House is literally unprecedented in modern American politics.

Matt Welch has a devastating essay on this at the New York Post:
Do you vote for presidents who repeatedly lie to you? I don’t.

President Obama lied in his 2010 State of the Union Address when he said his administration had “excluded lobbyists from policymaking jobs” (in fact, he had 40 ex-lobbyists then, and 54 now, according to the Washington Examiner’s Timothy P. Carney). He lied that year when he said “We are on the path to cutting our deficits in half,” and he’s lying this year when he says his new plan would cut the deficit by $4.3 trillion (more like $2 trillion). Obama lied when he said his signature health-care plan represented a triumph of the little man over special interests (it was precisely the opposite). He lied when he said the Congressional Budget Office concluded that ObamaCare would reduce the deficit by $1 trillion (it’s complicated, but no), and he, uh, forecasted incorrectly when he insisted that the typical family’s insurance premiums would go down $2,500 a year (they have instead gone up).

The administration’s reaction to the deadly Sept. 11 attack in Benghazi — lie, lie, lie and lie....

And for that, he will never get my vote.
BONUS: Check out the phenomenal roundup on the lies, at Nice Deb, "Video: Senator Portman Calls Obama Out: We Need to Find Out if POTUS Issued a Directive or Not."

PREVIOUSLY: "'We Watched Our People Die and Did Nothing...'"

'We Watched Our People Die and Did Nothing...'

At the video, Glenn Beck gets down to the nitty-gritty of the Benghazi debacle, via an American Power reader who sent me the clip. And also Karin McQuillan, at American Thinker, "Did Obama Watch While They Fought for their Lives?":

They fought for their lives for seven hours. 9/11/ 2012. Benghazi. The White House watched. No help was sent and they died.

Four Americans died in the jihadi attack on our consulate in Benghazi. Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods, two retired SEALS who were working as civilian security specialists in Benghazi, learned that Ambassador Stevens and nine other people at the consulate were under attack and rushed to their defense. The fourth man was Sean Smith, father of three, an Air Force veteran, working for the State Department in Libya.

The White House, the Pentagon, the State Department, and our military monitored the battle in real time starting with the first phone calls directly from Benghazi. A small military force from Tripoli was dispatched and was able to rescue some personnel hiding in other buildings. Ambassador Stevens remained missing, as did these three men. The fire-fight raged on.

The shocking news of October 22 was that a drone ordered in from Tripoli sent back images of the attack in real time. The battle was sent on streaming video direct to the Situation Room in the White House. Within two hours, emails from Benghazi reported that Al Qaeda in Libya was claiming responsibility.

President Obama, our Commander-in-Chief, had military options available to try and save our men. He could have had the drone armed with Hellfire missiles. He could have scrambled fighter jets from Sicily to drive off the attackers. He could have dropped in Special Forces. He had seven hours to take action.

He did nothing.
Continue reading.

Andrew Sullivan: 'You put a map of the Civil War over this electoral map, you’ve got the Civil War...'

Andrew Sullivan's ahistoricism is simply breathtaking. Just watch his stunningly ridiculous comments on "This Week with George Stephanopoulos," at Mediate, "Andrew Sullivan to ABC: If Romney Wins Florida and VA, It’s the ‘Confederacy’" (via Memeorandum):
PBS reporter Gwen Ifill said that “we can’t ignore” the possible factor racial animus may play in deciding the election, noting that the poll indicates that, on some level, people are still willing to admit “racial bias.”

Sullivan then added: “If Virginia and Florida go back to the Republicans, it’s the Confederacy. Entirely. You put a map of the Civil War over this electoral map, you’ve got the Civil War.”

Conservative panelist George Will rolled his eyes. “I don’t know,” said a skeptical Ifill.

Will then posited two possible explanations for Obama’s slippage in the white vote since 2008: “A lot of white people who voted for Obama in 2008 watched him govern for four years and said, ‘Not so good. Let’s try someone else.’ The alternative, the ‘Confederacy’ hypothesis is that those people somehow, for some reason in the last four years became racist.”

“That’s not my argument at all,” replied Sullivan. “It’s the southernization of the Republican Party. [Virginia and Florida] were the only two states in 2008 that violated the Confederacy rule.”

Bush 2004 Electoral College
Sullivan's comments are perfectly representative of the left's hopelessly desperate and utterly despicable politics of racial fear-mongering. Progressives have been attacking conservative presidential politics as racist since at least 1968, when Republicans deployed the so-called "Southern strategy" in the election of Richard Nixon to the White House. The South has been in the GOP column for decades. It's just the way it is, not shocking and not a racist conspiracy. That's the 2004 map above, where George W. Bush was reelected with 286 votes in the Electoral College, winning all the states of the Old Confederacy, and some of the Border States as well. Mitt Romney could put together a similar coalition of states on election day. I mean, if the left is intent on attacking Mitt Romney's campaign as racist, it will only be in line with long-standing leftist research stressing inbred racist DNA in Southern voting constituencies, which I personally don't endorse. These kinds of attacks on Republicans aren't new. If race indeed plays a role in a Barack Obama's defeat on November 6th, it certainly won't be something that Republicans pulled out of a hat at the last minute.

But remember, it's decidedly not the current strategy of the Republican Party to run a racially divisive platform. No, that honorarium goes to the current White House, the bankrupt Obama for America campaign, and the left's pathetic race-baiting enablers in the press. We've been accosted with allegations of racist "dog whistles" for almost four years now. The progressive left is positively obsessed with race, as the nearly criminal initial reporting on the Trayvon Martin incident showed. And any reader of William Jacobson's Legal Insurrection blog is more than aware of the embarrassingly comic minstrel show the left puts on every week with race-baiting attacks on conservatives. It's utterly shameless, for example, "Saturday Night Card Game (If You Can Hear the Dog Whistle, You Might Be a Racist)."

If Obama loses it will be because Americans have had it with his administration's failures and incompetence. The progressives will cry racism until the cows come home. But the rest of us have long tuned out the race-baiting. People who're genuinely concerned about the country will simply get to work rebuilding the economy and repairing the damage of four years of atonement in foreign policy. It's not a matter of if but when. And as recent polling increasingly indicates, 2013 is looking like a big restoration year for American conservatism.

BONUS: More at NewsBusters, "Andrew Sullivan Makes a Fool of Himself on ABC's 'This Week' With George Will and Gwen Ifill's Help."

UPDATE: Michael Zak on Twitter reminds us that the Democrats were and remain the party of racial segregation, as he pointed out in his book, "Back to Basics for the Republican Party."

And Ed Driscoll links at Instapundit (thanks!), and Glenn Reynolds updates at the post:
UPDATE (FROM GLENN): Andrew knows even less about American history than he knows about American culture and politics, something he’s demonstrated repeatedly. He should stick to his core area of expertise, forensic obstetrics.

Akron Beacon Poll Finds Ohio Dead Heat at 49-49 — Presidential Race Tighter Than Obama's A**hole in a Prison Shower

Well, Nate Silver's still whistling past the graveyard with his latest entry showing Obama with a 2.3 percent lead in the Ohio polling average, so the new numbers from the Buckeye State newspaper consortium will no doubt amp up the pressure on the New York Times wonder boy. To borrow from Bill Maher's vulger monologue the other night, the race is tighter than Barack Obama's a**hole in a prison shower.

See: "Presidential race tied in Ohio newspaper poll" (via Memeorandum). There's no way for Obama cultists to spin these numbers. Mitt Romney has the momentum, big time, with a little over a week to go until election day. Guy Benson provides a brief summary:
Dead heat, with independents split — but Romney ahead by six on the economy. And then there’s this: “Republicans as a group were more likely to say they were very enthusiastic about the election than Democrats were.” These results represent a five point swing to the GOP ticket since the last Ohio Newspaper Association survey, taken last month. Team Romney scrapped three rallies in Virginia tomorrow due to the impending severe weather, and that might be just as well: Mitt will join Paul Ryan on the trail in the Buckeye State instead.
If things don't change the New York Times wonder boy's poll predictions are going to take it in the rear, to say nothing of the nation's first gay president.

See also Ed Driscoll, "Michael Barone Predicts That Romney Will Win 2012 Presidential Race."

Benghazi Reveals Obama Is a Coward and Disgrace

From Daniel Gardner, at the Jackson Clarion Ledger:

President Obama continues to campaign acting as if he personally killed Osama bin Laden. “Osama bin Laden is dead and al Qaeda is on the run!” Obama has no scruples, conscience, empathy, or humility.

Obama was meeting with national security leaders when the attack in Benghazi went down. Unclassified documents reveal he received emails directly from Benghazi within minutes of the beginning of the attack, staff in Benghazi were in real-time contact with the State Department, and two drones overhead in Benghazi showed Washington exactly what was happening on the ground there.

Unclassified emails reveal three requests were made from Benghazi for help, and all three requests were rejected with orders to “stand down.” Special Forces troops were available and within two or three hours could have saved at least two of the four who died at the end of the seven-hour attack.

Obama literally watched the seven-hour battle refusing to send troops to save Americans…or, he didn’t care to watch or to intervene. Regardless, he didn’t care enough to save American lives when he had the opportunity.

The mainstream media is not even covering this story, but is parroting Obama’s talking points deceiving the American public.
Continue reading.

And see Nice Deb, "Video: Lt. Col. Tony Shaffer’s Sources Say Obama was in the Situation Room Watching Benghazi Attack – He Could Have Ordered an Intervention."

Plus, lots of coverage at Instapundit:

* "CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR: Benghazi attack: Urgent call for military help ‘was denied by chain of command’."

* "#BENGHAZI: “The stunning part of the story is that Tyrone Woods and Glen Doherty killed 60 of the attacking force. Once the compound was overrun, the attackers were incensed to discover that just two men had inflicted so much death and destruction.” Just think how much could have been accomplished if they’d had the support of their Commander-in-Chief."

* "#STANDDOWN: U.S. Had Two Drones, AC-130 Gunship, and Targets Painted in #Benghazi."

Ten Questions on Benghazi

From William Kristol, at the Weekly Standard, "Ten Questions for the White House":

Friday, in response to questions regarding the events of September 11 in Benghazi, President Obama said this: "Nobody wants to find out more what happened than I do. But we want to make sure we get it right, particularly because I have made a commitment to the families impacted as well as to the American people, we're going to bring those folks to justice. So, we're going to gather all the facts, find out exactly what happened, and make sure that it doesn't happen again but we're also going to make sure that we bring to justice those who carried out these attacks."

The interviewer followed up: "Were they denied requests for help during the attack?” The president responded: "Well, we are finding out exactly what happened. I can tell you, as I've said over the last couple of months since this happened, the minute I found out what was happening, I gave three very clear directives. Number one, make sure that we are securing our personnel and doing whatever we need to. Number two, we're going to investigate exactly what happened so that it doesn't happen again. Number three, find out who did this so we can bring them to justice. And I guarantee you that everyone in the state department, our military, the CIA, you name it, had number one priority making sure that people were safe. These were our folks and we're going to find out exactly what happened, but what we're also going to do it make sure that we are identifying those who carried out these terrible attacks."

THE WEEKLY STANDARD understands that it will take some time to "gather all the facts" about what happened on the ground in Benghazi. But presumably the White House already has all the facts about what happened that afternoon and evening in Washington—or, at least, in the White House. The president was, it appears, in the White House from the time the attack on the consulate in Benghazi began, at around 2:40 pm ET, until the end of combat at the annex, sometime after 9 p.m. ET. So it should be possible to answer these simple questions as to what the president did that afternoon and evening, and when he did it, simply by consulting White House meeting and phone records, and asking the president for his recollections...
Continue reading.

The Incredible Shrinking Obama

At the Weekly Standard:

Obama Fades
With our embassies around the world besieged, and some 47 million Americans on food stamps, the pettiness of Barack Obama’s presidential campaign has been something to behold. The leader of the free world has spent the last few weeks before Election Day talking about Big Bird and “binders full of women.” His latest gambit—accusing his challenger of having “stage three Romnesia”—manages the adolescent twofer of simultaneously mocking his opponent’s name and making light of cancer.

We were convinced the Obama campaign had hit bottom, but if the president has one thing going for him it’s his ability to surprise. And so last week the Obama campaign unveiled a new campaign ad featuring Lena Dunham—the young actor, writer, and director behind HBO’s critically lauded TV series Girls.

Dunham’s argument for voting for Obama is, uh, curious: “Your first time shouldn’t be with just anybody. You want to do it with a great guy. It should be with a guy with beautiful—someone who really cares about and understands women.” The comparison of surrendering one’s virginity to voting for Barack Obama is obviously beyond tasteless, and the reaction to the video has mostly been derision and mockery. (For what it’s worth, as The Scrapbook writes, the video has 5,396 likes and 7,242 dislikes on YouTube.) It also does no credit to the Obama campaign that parallels were quickly discovered between the Dunham spot and an election ad for Vladimir Putin, whose attitudes towards gender equality are not usually held up as a model by American feminists.

Interestingly, The Weekly Standard’s movie critic John Podhoretz recently praised Dunham and her show in these pages for “bitter honesty” in portraying the misadventures of four young women in Manhattan, in contrast to the “profoundly false we-are-women-hear-us-roar gender-solidarity fantasy that was Sex and the City.” However, the Washington Examiner’s Joel Gehrke notes that Dunham’s ad turns all that on its head:
As Dunham puts it, “It’s super uncool to be out and about and someone says ‘did you vote?’ and [you reply] ‘no, I didn’t feel—I wasn’t ready.’ ”

If a girl’s not ready, she’s not ready. The president, who has two daughters, surely understands that and probably wouldn’t have released this ad if he weren’t having a hard time while asking voters for four more years in the White House.
Considering that Democrats have spent the last few months making the vile argument that Republicans who don’t support abortion on demand are encouraging rape, the president of the United States running a campaign ad implying that young women who don’t let themselves get pressured into sex are “super uncool” is more than enough to make any normal person’s head explode.
Obviously stupid people are coming up with these ideas, stupid and desperate people.

More at the link.


Billy Idol Celebrates Fan's Birthday in Seattle

He's a good man.

Explosions Across Iraq During Eid al-Adha Holiday

Because Obama did such an awesome job on that SOF agreement!

At ABC News, "Iraq Bombings, House Raids Leave 40 Dead":
Iraqi insurgents unleashed a string of bombings and other attacks primarily targeting the country's Shiite community on Saturday, leaving at least 40 dead in a challenge to government efforts to promote a sense of stability by preventing attacks during a major Muslim holiday.

The bloodshed appeared to be the worst in Iraq since Sept. 9, when insurgents launched a wave of bombings and other attacks that left at least 92 dead in one of the country's bloodiest days this year.

The attacks underscored the difficulties facing the country's leadership as it struggles to keep its citizens safe. Authorities had increased security in hopes of preventing attacks during the four-day Eid al-Adha celebrations, when people are off work and families gather in public places.

The deadliest attacks struck in the evening in the Shiite neighborhood of Sadr City. Police said a car packed with explosives blew up near a market, killing 12 people and wounding 27. Half an hour later, a second car bomb went off in one of Sadr city's bus stations, killing 10 and injuring 31.

Earlier in the day, a bomb exploded near playground equipment that had been set up for the holiday in a market on the capital's outskirts in the eastern neighborhood of Bawiya. Police officials said eight people were killed, including four children. Another 24 people, including children, were wounded, they added.

"Nobody expected this explosion because our neighborhood has been living in peace, away from the violence hitting the rest of the capital," said Bassem Mohammed, a 35-year-old father of three in the neighborhood who was startled by the blast.
Thanks Baracky!

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