Cheat-Seeking Missles

Sunday, October 31, 2004

The "Hedgefox" President

On the eve of the election, the LA Times has admitted on page one that their candidate, Sen. John Flip Kerry, is such a liability that they want to turn voters's attention away from him. The lead article in Real Clear Politics today appears above the fold in today's Times, and boldly deflects attention from Kerry with the headline, "Why 'This Is About Bush.'" Ronald Brownstein's piece is based on Isaiah Berlin's categorization of "intellectuals and artists into two categories: the fox, who is clever, creative, committed to many goals; and the hedgehog, a creature by a single, unwavering conviction."

Let's quickly score one for Bush. For Brownstein to move forward on his thesis, he has to accept Bush as either an intellectual or an artist; I'm guessing he hasn't analyzed Bush's brush stroke.

One supposes Brownstein positions Kerry as the fox, although the article's focus on Bush does not leave much room for Brownstein to categorize Kerry at all. Is Kerry "clever, creative, committed to many goals?" Absolutely not. His 20 year Senate record shows a narrowly focused Liberal, a hedgehog if ever there was one. His campaign rhetoric shows a mockingbird, not a fox. See the post on Kyoto below ("Kerry disses Kyoto ... no, wait"). Kerry's only hedgehoggyness is his focus on achieving the presidency, apparently for no other reason than he thinks its his turn. He has not been able to articlulate a vision, and he has never said anything much about his plans except that he has them.

Is Bush a hedgehog? Brownstein avoids some multi-goal attributes, like across-the-board tax cuts and the No Child Left Behind Act, and states his hedgehog argument as follows:

With his repeated tax cuts, his support for a constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage and the war in Iraq, Bush has consistently pursued goals that generate strong support among Republicans and conservatives, but at the price of provoking antipathy among Democrats and liberals.

In his policies, Bush has sought to advance his ideas mainly by holding to sharply defined positions — and attempting to shift the debate in his direction almost by magnetic force.

In his political strategy, he has sought more to deepen his support among groups that lean in his direction than to broaden his appeal among groups that have resisted him.

So it gets down to tax cuts (not exactly a winner for mainstream Dems, since so many of them benefitted from the cuts), gay marriage (a loser for the Dems) and Iraq. In other words, it gets down to Iraq.

I'm tempted to say, "Then bring in the hedgehogs!" when it comes to Iraq. I want a leader with a ruthless, focused, singular commitment to hunting down and killing terrorists, and that's definitely Bush, not Kerry. But Brownstein has set up a false argument. A hedgehog would still be burrowing around in Tora Bora looking for ObL. Bush quickly realized a broad, multi-front battle was necessary, as he laid out in his 2002 State of the Union address, and he has pursued it in Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Israel, Warsaw, Damascus, in banking centers, with NATO and the UN, on land, air and sea, from satellites and electronic bugs, using the FBI, CIA, NSA and all other resources and avenues at his disposal.

This is a hedgehog election, but Brownstein has it wrong. It's a If%20It/102-8667080-8589729'>one issue campaign, not a one-issue campaigner. It's all about the War on Terrorism, and that's why Bush is going to win on Tuesday. He is both the hedgehog and the fox on this one.

Saturday, October 30, 2004

Dem-Spin Losing Its Grip

The tone of this morning's LA Times article on the bin Laden tape was gloomy, with a permiating theme that the tape favored Bush. Still, the Times gave the Dems plenty of room to spin the bin Laden tape, but there was no traction. Watch out for flying gravel; here comes the spin. First, Kerry senior strategist Joe Lockhart:

"It's offensive and shameful for this president to play politics the way he did today with this issue."

That'll work! No one's noticed that Kerry & Crew have been playing politics with our service personnel in harms way since the start of the campaign.

Here's what the candidate himself had to say:

"I regret that when George Bush had the opportunity in Afghanistan and Tora Bora, he didn't choose to use American forces to hunt down and kill Osama bin Laden," Kerry said in a satellite interview with the ABC affiliate in Milwaukee. Later, ... in West Palm Beach, Fla., Kerry [said], "Let me just make it clear — crystal clear.... As Americans, we are absolutely united in our determination to hunt down and destroy Osama bin Laden and the terrorists."

We'll paraphrase that as, "We're absolutely united ... but the President is inept." Or am I too harsh? Maybe a better paraphrase would be, "We're absolutely united and forget the fact that everything I've said about Tora Bora is divisive and has been shown to be untrue, in the spirit if unity, I'm going to say it again."

And finally:

"My own personal view is that this is at least going to be a wash, and possibly helpful to Sen. Kerry," said Michael Greenberger, the director of the Center for Health and Homeland Security at the University of Maryland."It falls within his thesis that we are bogged down in Iraq and we are fighting the wrong enemy, and here is this person taking full credit for 9/11, being videotaped and quite safe from any danger."

Greenberger is spinning in a vacuum. Weren't the American people focused all week on the massive weapons caches in Iraq? Obviously, "the wrong enemy" isn't going to play this week like it played two weeks ago. And as for "here is this person taking full credit for 9/11" -- is if we didn't know it was bin Laden! Has Greenberger been camped out with Moore, Daschle, Dean and the other loonies, thinking it was Bush earlier? That'll convince the masses.

Friday, October 29, 2004

Oh The Times, It Is A'Stranglin'

A nine-paragraph story in today's New York Post no doubt brings a warm glow to the hearts of Hugh and MSM critics everywhere. Funny, Times spokespersons didn't attribute the paper's 6.3 percent Sunday circulation drop on the fact that they've PO'd every Conservative subscriber (or former subscriber).


October 29, 2004 --
Tribune Co.'s two largest papers, the Los Angeles Times and Chicago Tribune, disclosed steep circulation declines the same day the company reported lackluster quarterly results. ...

At The Times, daily circulation fell 5.6 percent and 6.3 percent on Sunday for the six-month period ended September.

The paper blamed the decline on the national Do-Not-Call list and a "deliberate decision" to reduce less profitable sales programs, such as discounted bulk papers delivered to homes and sold on newsstands.

Surprise! The LA Times buried the story in its Business Sections' In Brief column. Surprise, surprise! Circulation figures weren't mentioned.

What Osama Proves

The bin Laden tape, on the heels of the "blood in the street" al Qaeda tape released earlier this week, is more confirming than chilling. Here's what it tells us:
  1. al Qaeda's got nothing. If they really wanted to disrupt our election, they woud attack us with something more powerful than videotapes. Talk is cheap, and cheap is all they've got. The fact that the two tapes were released independently so close to each other indicates that there is no communication between the various factions. As a communications strategist, I know you don't dilute the big message by releasing a lesser message just days earlier. And that leads to:
  2. Bush's strategy is working. The killing and jailing of al Qaeda leadership, the driving of them further underground, the attack on their finances, the diversion of their resources by the Iraq war -- these combine to create the situation where al Qaeda's got no power to attack, no communication, no plan other than survival. And in time the Bush strategy will take care of that last point, crushing them.
  3. The Left has lost its message. The message-drivers of the Dems are unequivocally proven to be deceitful, liars or paranoid (multiple answers allowed). Bush is holding bin Laden for a pre-election announcement? No. Bush was behind 9/11? No. It's all about oil? No. Tonight, Alan Combs was reduced to shouting at Peggy Noonan the tired Tora Bora "outsource" argument, which has been thoroughly discredited by Tommy Franks. Noonan looked like she wanted to slug him. I sure did.
  4. Kerry's got nothing to say. Since bin Laden pointedly says it doesn't matter whether Kerry or Bush is elected, Kerry's left with nothing to say but the vague promise that he would fight the war better. Better enough to merit changing horses in the middle of this particular stream?
  5. Bin Laden confirms that our only viable tactic is a preemptive one. The bearded Hitler says it's OK for Jihadists to attack offensively, but any defensive response is a crime against humanity. Arab terrorists kill Israeli children, women and men from Lebanon and it's OK, but responding is a transgression against humanity. They fly airplanes into buildings and it's heroic, but responding isn't justified. Given the option bin Laden leaves us -- we attack, you cower -- preemption is fully justified.

So all in all, the tape is good news for Bush, who the public broadly perceives as the better war time leader.

But I have to admit, I was hoping bin Laden had been reduced to broken strands of DNA by our military, and it's disappointing that he's proved that wrong.

Thursday, October 28, 2004

Michael Moore vs. My Daughter

I'm so proud of my 18-year-old daughter, an acorn that didn't fall far from the tree if ever there was one!

A couple days ago, she was walking across the Saddleback College campus and found a poster advertising screenings of Fahrenheit 9/11 on campus. She's not much of a speller, so unlike me, she sees no value in the film; I value it for teaching many Americans how to spell Fahrenheit. She found the screening was sponsored by the college's Dem club and vowed to show up with handouts documenting the films errors.

So last night she, my wife and I sat through the film; the first time any of us had seen it. We were amazed at how sophomoric the deceit is -- no firm connections; just illusions, hints and paranoid conjecture. We were astonished to learn on viewing the film that Moore was afraid to show the actual 9/11 event, knowing it would remind viewers that we truly are fighting for something here. If you (wisely) have not seen the film, be aware that the screen is black during that portion; you hear only the sounds of the vicious attack on America. What a coward.

Today, my daughter ran out 100 copies of a four-page criticism of the film, and went to the campus to hand them out at two screenings.

She just got home and reported that only about 40 people showed up, and after the showing, she was invited to a discussion group, as the sole Republican in a room of Dems and Anarchists. She calmly and forcefully stood her ground, made her points and made a good impression for our cause. Only one ranter attacked her, calling her a Nazi. She responded, "And you are a Communist." Quite a gal! Could a dad be more proud?

Links to her resources:
New York Times Magazine
BBC News
CNN News

Objectivity? Schmogjectivity!

Today's Washington Post article by Jo Becker on U.S. District Court Susan J. Dlott's ruling yesterday that effectively stopped GOP efforts to challenge voter eligibility in Ohio is a textbook study in liberal media bias. Ojectivity requires only balance, not fairness, but Becker's story didn't even get to objectivity. Here's an objective analysis:

  • Becker appropriately lets the winner have first say, giving Dem strategist David Sullivan the opportunity to draw some blood: "The Republican assault on tens of thousands of Ohio voters was an unprecedented effort to intimidate voters, especially minorities, but it has backfired."

    But in paragraph four, no such courtesy is given the GOP; instead, there's only a dry paraphrase, and a rather cold and threatening one at that: Mark Weaver, a lawyer for the Ohio Republican Party, said yesterday's ruling does not prevent the party from going forward with plans to place 3,400 monitors in polling places, particularly in heavily Democratic urban areas.

  • Nowhere in the 20-paragraph story does Becker explain the basis for the GOP challenge. You learn in Journalism 101 to do that, but you apparently learn in Washington Post 101 to give no quarter.

  • Instead of explaining the nature of the GOP challenge in Ohio, Becker lays out a litany of GOP challenges in other states:

    In Nevada, another battleground, Clark County election officials rejected an attempt this month by the former executive director of that state's GOP to challenge 17,000 voters in the Las Vegas area.

    In Florida, the GOP has filed plans to place poll watchers at 5,000 polling places, spokeswoman Mindy Tucker Fletcher said.

    In Denver, election officials said the Republican Party told them it plans to have 350 poll watchers to challenge voters there. "This is a very organized, very intense effort," said Alan McBeth of the Denver Election Commission. "If it becomes abusive, we may have to step in and say this is out of hand."

    Any copy about Dem activities you ask? Not a word, not a single, solitary word.

  • Then there's this openly biased sequence masquerading as objectivity:

    Tom Josefiak, the Bush campaign's general counsel, said in a recent interview that challenges would be conducted in a non-intimidating manner that would not disrupt voting.
    Democrats, however, argue that the real aim of the challenge program is to keep voters likely to support Sen. John F. Kerry (D-Mass.), particularly minorities, from casting ballots.
    Bob Bauer, a lawyer for the Democratic National Committee, said Democrats will also have large numbers of poll watchers. But, he said, "our watchers will be there to help voters, not to hinder them, to answer their questions, not to question them."

    Again, the quote goes to the Dem, the ominous paraphrase to the Republican. Two paragraphs of Dem response and allegation to one paragraph of negatively paraphrased, question-raising GOP-speak.

  • And finally, what exercise in Kerry-supporting "objective" journalism would be complete without laying down the race card?

    In Florida, Republican poll watchers will be disproportionately concentrated in minority precincts, according to a Democratic Party analysis of census data and GOP plans filed in five counties. In Miami-Dade, 59 percent of predominately black precincts will have at least one GOP poll watcher, compared with 37 percent of white precincts.

    Although Fletcher did not dispute those numbers, she said that the party will not single out black neighborhoods, but rather heavily Democratic ones. "Those are the places most likely for the Democrats . . . to try to steal the election," she said.

    Obviously, GOP watchers will watch heavily DEM districts, and just as obviously, many of those districts will be minority districts. To cloak it as a race issue is so outrageous it begs the question: Is it true that the Democrats are disproportionately concentrating their efforts in white precincts? Of course they are.

  • Nowhere in the article, nowhere, is there one mention of the many, very real DEM efforts to challenge, cheat, and intimidate and manipulate voters in this election, although there's plenty to report on that subject.

Wednesday, October 27, 2004

350 Tons of Thoughts

  1. If John Kerry had been elected four years ago, would the "Missing Weapons" story ever seen the light of day? Answer: No, because with the exception of 9/11, none of what happened in the last four years would have happened. No liberation of Afghanistan and Iraq, no strong message to terrorists, and even less would be known about the weapons than we know now.
  2. How can anyone say Bush was wrong in not trusting the UN inspection process, when that process led to nothing more than tagging weapons ... not destroying them?
  3. Why didn't CBS learn anything from Rathergate? Why weren't they scared to launch a highly questionable anti-Bush story just 36 hours or so before the election?
  4. Why is CBS immune? They are so obviously partisan, yet they use the public airwaves without fear.
  5. Why did the New York Times bury the controversy about its story today (on pg. 10, with no link on their online edition)?
  6. Will anyone lose their job at the NY Times over this? Answer: No.
  7. Why didn't the LA Times cover the controversy about the New York Times story today?
  8. Has any member of any crowd that Kerry shilled on this topic today not read or heard about the controversy?
  9. When will we find out that the Kerry campaign was approached by the same anonymous source (no doubt someone from the U.N.) that took the story to the NY Times and CBS?
  10. How does Kerry balance "terrorism isn't a real threat/wrong war, wrong time, wrong place" with "missing 350 tons of weapons?" Answer: Easy; he's got a lot of practice.
  11. Could I feel any more nausiated than I did when I heard of the tape ABC's holding? These people are so sick that there is no alternative but all-out assault.
  12. How can anyone vote for Kerry in light of the obvious answers to questions 1-10 above?

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Kerry Disses Kyoto ... No, Wait ...

An interesting tidbit from the very interesting Greenie Watch blog:

This can be seen in the Kerry campaign's schizophrenic approach to the global warming issue. On Friday 19 August, the campaign issued a document aimed at keeping the West Virginian coal industry open. It included the words, "John Kerry and John Edwards believe that the Kyoto Protocol is not the answer. The near-term emission reductions it would require of the United States are infeasible, while the long-term obligations imposed on all nations are too little to solve the problem."

But on 24 August, The Journal Times of Racine, Wisconsin, published an account of John Edwards' visit to the town the day before. According to the paper, Edwards "lamented" America's failure to join the Kyoto treaty. It seems the Kerry-Edwards campaign opposes Kyoto when coal miners' votes are at stake but supports it in other areas.

Close-Minded Christians?

We hear it all the time from the Left: Christians, particularly conservative Christians, are close-minded and intolerant. How does this perception jibe with this data regarding the conservative Christian students of Vanguard University, an Assemblies of God liberal arts college in Costa Mesa, California? It certainly appears to counter the Liberal perspective with facts (not the first time that's happened!):

-33% of Vanguard students took a Women’s Studies course (vs. 16% for religious colleges, 22% for national sample).
-42% had a roommate of different race/ethnicity (vs. 33% of national sample).
-68% socialized with someone of different ethnicity (vs. 49% of national sample).

Monday, October 25, 2004

When Kerry Loses

Things are looking worse for John Kerry, as the polling trends run against him in the critical closing days of the campaign. If all the Dems have for an October surprise is missing munitions in Iraq, it's not an election-winner because it begs this question: If Kerry had been president during the last term, would we have even been in Iraq to protect the munitions? Yes or no, the fact that it is a legitimate question is evidence enough that he would not be a trustworthy Commander in Chief in time of war.

So let's assume things will continue as they are, and Bush will win popular and electoral victories significant enough to accomplish what Hugh outlined in "If It's Not Close, The Can't Cheat." What can they do to reposition their party after neither a sitting Vice President or a Vietnam War veteran (did you know Kerry served in Vietnam?) can't beat a candidate they discount as deeply as the do George Bush?

It gets down to this: They will have to learn how to win two wars.

The first war, of course, is the foreign policy war. The Bush Doctrine will have prevailed over the Internationalist doctrine, and if they're honest, the Dems will see that this happened for good reason. Germany and France have done nothing to endear themselves to mainstream America over the last three years, and will further alienate us in the four years ahead. Much is written in MSM about how Bush has alienated them, but precious little has been written about how they have alienated us. The U.N. botched Sudan, has not supported Iraqi elections and is hamstrung on Iranian and North Korean nuclear weapons. The price of the failure of the Internationalists to move a post-9/11 agenda forward will become very real to the Dems on November 3 -- and it's more than Patriot Fries and boycotts of French wine. It is the profound and possibly permanent diminishment of authority of Old Europe and the U.N.

To rebuild themselves, the Dems will have to stake out ground that begins to step away from the U.N. and Global Tests, but can they afford to embrace the Bush Doctrine? It seems their only two options are to try to stake out some definable middle ground, or to move to the right of Bush with an Old School Democrat, an interventionalist like Roosevelt, who in his day shook up isolationist Republicans. Either will be a challenge.

The second war is the moral war here at home. This spring, when Missouri put a ballot measure on its primary ballot that would forbid gay marriage, more people voted on the initiative than voted for governor, and it went down to flaming defeat. Read: Trouble for Dems, because moral issues turn out Republicans. This is likely to repeat in Ohio on November 2, where a gay marriage initiative will appear along with the Bush/Kerry choice.

If the Dems are looking at an Ohio loss on November and considering the role gay marriage had in their defeat, they will have to reconsider the value of their allegiance to their gay and lesbian constiuents. In many ways, this will be a harder battle for them than Iraq because what Josh McDowell termed "the new tolerance" has them in a bit of a sticky wicket. Old tolerance meant "I'll respect you and treat you decently even if I don't agree with you." The new tolerance force you to agree with those you don't agree with, or be a bigot. Tolerance, more specfically New Tolerance, is the religion of the Left, so much of the Democratic electorate will not show up for this war; they would rather have their party fail than fail the tolerance test.

There is no leader in the Democratic Party who seems capable of leading it through genuine change of this magnitude. But I'm a Christian, so I believe that God uses times of crisis and pain to strengthen us and move us in new directions. This model worked for America in the transition from the Great Depression to World War II, and it could work for the Democrats too. Out of the shambles of a Gore loss followed by a Kerry loss, both at the hands of the bumbler from Texas, they just might gain the strength, insight and commitment to reform themselves.

Or they could give birth to a Hitler.

Sunday, October 24, 2004

Being Stupid Isn't Being Disenfranchised

George Will got it right: "When poll taxes, meretricious literacy tests, hositle sheriffs and mobs stood between blacks and ballots, blacks were disenfranchised. To be disenfranchised is to have something done to you, not to do something to yourself" -- like turning up at the wrong polling place, or having been convicted a felony or two.

Saturday, October 23, 2004

Stupid, Forgetful Women for Kerry

John Kerry:
"Today, for far too many women, the American Dream seems a million miles away, because you've barely got time to sleep, and when you've barely got time to sleep, you've barely got time to dream," said Kerry, who called for a higher minimum wage, equalizing pay for men and women doing the same job and expanding the availability of healthcare.

Teresa I-Still-Use-My-Dead-Republican-Husband's-Name Kerry:
"But I don't know that [Laura Bush has] ever had a real job — I mean, since she's been grown up." (Hat tip, Blogs for Bush)

So unless you're a teacher, librarian or housewife, the Kerrys are on your side, gals! Punch that D-chad!

Who Will Carry Florida's Newbies?

Today the Los Angeles Times reported on a changed dynamic in Florida:

In the last four years, Republicans have added 462,000 new registered voters; Democrats have gained 458,000.Based on new registration figures, Republicans represent 37.8% of voters, and Democrats 41.4%.

But experts say a surge in registered independent voters signals a new wild card in Florida presidential politics.Since 2000, more than 532,000 independents have registered here, raising their percentage statewide from 15.5% to 18.3% of voters. And the campaigns for both Bush and Democrat John F. Kerry predict they'll attract the lion's share of those independent ballots come November.

At first blush, a 4,000 registration edge in a state Bush won by 500 votes last time around doesn't give the Times much room to call this a wild card. But the paper's not flashing it's left wing credentials here, because some analysits say Indepents break about 5-3 against the incumbent. On the other hand, Jeb Bush is very popular ... popular enough to have coattails.

Pundits: Ready, aim (or not), analyze!

Friday, October 22, 2004

Stupid Enough for Intellectuals to Believe

Ah, let's celebrate elitism! Let's bemoan America's pinheaded oafishness! And let's do it in the LA Times. Writing today, Chilean op/ed writer Ariel Dorfman opined,

Is John Kerry too intelligent to be president of the United States?

It was what I felt instinctively the first and only time I met him, at a lunch at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, in 1998. He was subtle, full of cultural and historical references, elaborating each fine argument at length, with perception and nuance. I commented to one of his aides afterward that I regrettably thought his brains could turn out to be the biggest impediment to a man like him ever occupying the White House.

Dolrfman then goes on to recount how as a 10-year-old, he alone straw-voted for Adlai Stephenson, "one of the most lucid and cultured men in America," while his 27 classmates voted for Ike, who (brace yourself, this is really unbelievably shameful), "preferred playing golf to reading a book." Surprise! Dorfman doesn't think much of Bush: "... it seems inconceivable to me that someone as incompetent, incoherent and obtuse as Bush could possibly command almost half the votes of his fellow countrymen." (This after bemoaning that Bush is ahead in the polls; I think that should be "more than half," not "almost half," Ariel.)

After an incredibly self-indulgent expose on the history of American electoral anti-intellectualism, delivered with a hint of elitism not dissimilar from the hint of Brut I used to sport in seventh grade, Dorfman concludes:

One can only hope that his fellow Americans, so many years later, will not be afraid of choosing as their leader a man who believes that the best way to defeat the multiple terrors of today and tomorrow is with an intelligence of which no human should ever be ashamed.

Now I might not be too bright, Ol' Buddy, but I think the best way to defeat them multiple terrors is with a big, nasty army. And I think George Bush is more than intelligent enough to figger that out. But if you feel that way, you be sure to go ahead and face down that Mullah feller with your smarts.

As Dennis Prager would say of Dorfman's hypothesis, it's so stupid, only an intellectual could believe it.

Bush: The Environmentalists' Choice

Bear with me; the title will become understandable in the last few graphs.

New Republic Senior Editor Ryan Lizza writes of the four strategies the Bush administration is using in the final days of the campaign. They are:
  1. Elevate the attacks on Kerry, using both Bush and Cheney as spokespersons. (I guess that's different someow from, "Elevate the attacks on Bush, using both Kerry and Edwards as spokespersons.")
  2. Wrap Bush in 9/11. (That's the best Lizza can do to refute the litany of Kerry failures Bush chronicled in his powerful speech last week in New Jersey. "Jersey's close to New York, so that's all that speech was about....")
  3. Soften the edges using Laura Bush. (I don't think you'll find, "Soften the edges using Teresa I-still-use-my-dead-Republican-husband's-name Kerry" in the Dem playbook.)
  4. Attack the media. (Lizza seems shocked at the allegation that MSM may be biased.)

Nothing really amazing there. But as they say on late-night TV, but wait, there's more. In the discussion of Bush/Cheney attacks sits this paragraph:

As Bush continues to play the attack dog, Cheney's chief job seems to be to scare voters. In 1964, Lyndon Johnson had "Daisy." This year, Bush has Cheney. Before the war in Iraq, it was Cheney who said, "We believe [Saddam Hussein] has, in fact, reconstituted nuclear weapons." In Ohio this week, Cheney returned to the theme. "The biggest threat we face now as a nation," he said, "is the possibility of terrorists ending up in the middle of one of our cities with deadlier weapons than have ever been used against us--with biological agents, or a nuclear weapon, or a chemical weapon of some kind, able to threaten the lives of hundreds of thousands of Americans, not just three thousand. And that's the ultimate threat. And, for us to have a strategy that's capable of dealing with that threat and defeating it--you've got to get your mind around that concept."

I looked for Lizza to get his mind around this in the next paragraph, but that's all there is. To him, the thought of a catastrophic terrorist act on our shores is so sensationalistic as to merit no further comment; it is, de facto, damning. How can anyone who lived through 9/11 and has tracked the attack plans detailed in Islamofascist materials our troops have confiscated see this as merely a scare tactic? But Lizza's not alone.

I was asked by an environmental reporter just last week how the Bush and Kerry administrations would vary on environmental issues. At first I was taken aback, because even though I make my living off environmental issues, I don't think of this election in environmental terms. But I quickly realized the environmental significance of the 2004 election and answered: "The biggest environmental threat our nation faces is the detonation of a nuclear or biological weapon by a terrorist on our shores. That's why Bush should be the environmentalists' choice." Not surprisingly, the reporter was startled at the thought.

So it's true: Kerry owns the head-in-the-sand vote.

Inspector Annan at Rick's

As Inspector Annan leads the raid into Rick's Cafe Internationale, delegates scramble as his investigators sweep up documents from the tables. Inspector Annan, not-too-inconspicuoulsy pocketing a few papers that might incriminate his son, approaches Rick: "I am shocked, shocked, to see self-interest going on here!"

What's Volker going to say and when's he going to say it? The early briefing yesterday was tantalizing in its timing. Why would the UN direct a partial report just two weeks before the election, since the report undermines Kerry's determination that a broader coalition could have been built under his leadership (leadership that's been lacking in the management of his campaign)? The Volker briefing showed, just as the Duelfer report did, that missing coalition partners Russia and France were major oil-for-food players. Voelker said the two nations were tied to oil-for-food to the tune of $27 billion.

On the heels of Iraqi criticism earlier this week that the U.N. has failed to support democratic elections, Annan's response seems shell-shocked: "If governments were to sell their votes because some of their companies ... were to do business with Iraq or elsewhere, I think it would be a very sad state for the Security Council and for the world. I do not believe it." Believe it, Kofi.

Thursday, October 21, 2004

Phoney Cops and Phoney Fraud

The Advancement Project, purveyors of minority voter fraud fear-mongering, has come up with phantom cops as a big voter disenfranchisement boogeyman in November. Sorry, computer woes (don't ask) keep me from including a link, but this is from tonight's CNN Lou Dobbs report. Lott's guests: John Lott from the American Enterprise Institute, who expertly fires a cheat-seeking missle at Edward Hailes Jr. from the Advancement Project.

LOTT: I think a lot of the discussion about disenfranchising African-American voters, in particular I think it's been fairly sad, because I think there have been a lot of myths in Florida, for example. I mean, you have the Commission on Civil Rights did an extensive set of hearings, they weren't able to identify even one person.

DOBBS: Not one?


HAILES: Lou, that's absolutely false. And Mr. Lott is actually in the minority of people around the world to really believes nothing bad happened in Florida and in other places around the world. We did see systemic irregularities, problems with identifiable victims who were disenfranchised and we're going to do everything we can this time to make sure that citizens of color in particular are not disenfranchised the way they were during the 2000 election. So Mr. Lott simply wrong.

LOTT: Even the Democrats on the Civil Rights Commission were not able to point to a single case of voter intimidation in Florida. They had possibilities that might have existed. But the only cases that people could even point to that were even remotely were similar would be like a police officer's car who was a mile from the polling place. Nothing that the police officer intimidated people or talked to people or threatened them and he was a mile from the polling place. And no evidence, not one case where they could point to somebody who, because of intimidation, didn't vote.

HAILES: Well, let's look to the future. Our concern is that there may be make-believe, wanna-be law enforcement, fraud cops showing up in minority precincts claiming that fraud is an issue and intimidating voters. And we're not going to let that happen. We have a cadry of well-trained lawyers who will make sure that our communities are not disenfranchised.

Incredible. Deprived of anything factual on which to base his argument, the quick-on-his-feet Hailes invents make-believe, wanna-be cops, then threatens them with real lawyers. Isn't it terribly racist of Hailes to assume that minorities are stupid, and will fall for this?

Why Not Kerry? Why Bush?

In "In But Not Of," Hugh urged us to start a blog, but it took his Bush vs. Kerry Vox Blogoli to take me to my tipping point. Thanks for the new addiction, Hugh!

Why not Kerry? Why Bush? The reasons flood my mind so clarity is almost impossible. Here's what bubbles to the top today.

He bleeds pale blue. My terrific step-dad Bill is a retired career diplomat who's already cast his absentee ballot for Kerry. He sends me long foreign policy journal articles that belittle the Bush doctrine and promote internationalism -- but to me, they all seem hopelessly pre-9/11, just as Kerry does. As with everything, internationalism has its place, and as with every issue, Kerry is out of place. Yesterday's Washington Post piece on Kerry's position on the use of force says it all. It's OK to die for the U.N.'s pale blue, but not the red, white and blue:

In 1994, discussing the possibility of U.S. troops being killed in Bosnia, [Kerry] said, "If you mean dying in the course of the United Nations effort, yes, it is worth that. If you mean dying American troops unilaterally going in with some false presumption that we can affect the outcome, the answer is unequivocally no."

"Some false presumption that we can affect the outcome?" It's as if he hasn't changed a single synapse since Vietnam. Remember Bush in the classroom on the morning of 9/11 -- you see the realization hit him instantly, as his eyes betray the thought: "This changes everything."

Gracelessness under pressure. Kerry's behavior and judgment worsen as the polling gap holds and the finish line nears. You have to wonder: If he can't handle the pressure of a close presidential race with any more character than this, what can we expect if he should get to lead the country?

Just one example of Kerry flailing is the claim that Bush imposed a 17% Medicare premium increase. The increase was not imposed by the president, but was mandated by the balanced budget agreement signed by Clinton, when Kerry -- not Bush -- was in office. On this, and on Mary Cheney, Christopher Reeve, Social Security, minority access to the polls, flu shots and the draft, the Kedwards team is showing their true colors: do anything to win. That's what devils and despots do, not leaders.

Bush's mom didn't have to say "integrity" to him three times.

Let's never forget the Secret Service guy. How one treats someone who serves, be it a waitress or a special agent, is a true window into the soul. When the presumptive nominee (I always thought "the presumptuous nominee" was closer to the point) berated his Secret Service escort for allegedly tripping him on the ski slopes, decent people crossed Kerry off their list.

George Bush is the kind of guy firefighters give a bear hug to. Can you imagine him slamming the little guy?

So here's the box score on policy, integrity and character: Bush 3, Kerry 0. And I haven't even gotten to Theresa and Little John yet.

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Depends on Your Perspective

The Los Angeles Times:
Poll Gauges Blacks' Take on Kerry
By Michael Finnegan, Times Staff Writer

African American adults overwhelmingly prefer Sen. John F. Kerry over President Bush in the Nov. 2 election, but support the Democratic candidate less strongly than they favored Al Gore in 2000, according to a poll released Tuesday.

The Orange County Register:
Bush improves his standing among blacks
Poll reveals African-American support for president has doubled in four years.
By WILLIAM DOUGLAS Knight Ridder Newspapers
WASHINGTON – Support for President George W. Bush among African-Americans has doubled in four years, according to a poll released Tuesday.

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

The Tora Bora Whore-a

John Kerry whored for votes in the last debate when he brought up Tora Bora. OK, he whored for votes in just about every answer from outsourcing to outing, but with Tora Bora, Kerry's panderous activities were busted by the vice squad in the persona of Ret. Gen. Tommy Franks.

Writing in today's New York Times, Franks figuratively ordered Kerry to hit the deck and give him 20, saying, "the debate should focus on facts, not distortions of history. " He discredited Kerry's "outsourcing" claim -- one of the most insulting slurs the Senator has hurled at the military in this campaign -- and refuted Kerry's "eye off the ball" charge against the President. But best of all, he slapped the condom of truth over some false numbers Kerry has been spouting:

As we planned for potential military action in Iraq and conducted counterterrorist operations in several other countries in the region, Afghanistan remained a center of focus. Neither attention nor manpower was diverted from Afghanistan to Iraq. When we started Operation Iraqi Freedom we had about 9,500 troops in Afghanistan, and by the time we finished major combat operations in Iraq last May we had more than 10,000 troops in Afghanistan.

But I have to ask: Why are we reading this in the New York Times? Why are we hearing it from Gen. Frank, not the president or vice president? Bush's New Jersey speech was a terrific litany of Kerry's weaknesses on defense, but Gen. Frank showed that numbers offer superior firepower to rhetoric. C'mon, Bush/Cheney, fire off some cheat-seeking missiles!

Hi-Klass Hed of the Day

It's actually a sub-hed, not a hed, from the Inland Empire Daily Bulletin last Sunday; let's file this under, "Give me smog, lots of smog, under squalid skies above:"

Projected Inland Empire growth
will bring people, high-paying jobs,
cars, higher housing costs, more
demand for water and pollution

Zeke, George and John

Way back about 2,600 years ago, Ezekiel had a vision regarding Egypt that sounds like a good justification for the war in Iraq. Lost in MSM chatter about WMDs is much mention at all of the war in Iraq as a deterent against other terrorist-harboring dictators. In Ezekiel's prophesy, God sees things differently, saying that long-term benefits can come from actions that face criticism:
I will trouble the hearts of many peoples
when I bring about your destruction among the nations,
among lands you have not known.
I will cause many peoples to be appalled at you,
and their kings will shudder with horror because of you
when I brandish my sword before them.
On the day of your downfall each of them will tremble every moment of his life.
Eze. 32: 9, 10

The Los Angeles Times boldly misses this point today on yet another Page One appeal designed to give Kerry voters just enough comfort to punch the D chad. In an effort to unspin the highly effective RNC flip-flop message, Kerry apologists Ronald Brownstein and Kathleen Hennessey claim that Bush, too, waffles on the war.

Their argument: "Before the war, the major chord was security and terrorism. Bush continually warned that Hussein could provide weapons of mass destruction to terrorists. As the evidence has accumulated that Iraq did not possess chemical, biological or nuclear weapons, Bush increasingly has argued that building democracy in Iraq would inspire democratic change across the region in a domino effect. That argument was part of, but secondary, in the administration's case before the invasion."

Bush's speeches present multiple reasons for the war that accurately reflect his policy. Key among these convincing justifications is, "I will trouble the hearts of many peoples when I bring about your destruction among the nations ... kings will shudder in horror because of you." The Times can limit its focus to WMDs to create an illusion of inconsistency from Bush, if it chooses to, but the label just doesn't stick. Can't stick. This has nothing to do with Bush being a Teflon president; it has everything to do with the contrast between the President who is resolute to the (occasional) point of criticism, and the opponent, who is irresolute to the point of perpetual confusion.

Monday, October 18, 2004

A Purposeful Presidency

A life purpose isn't built overnight. It is formed early and grows slowly, nurtured by feedback and strengthened by milestones in passion, pain, achievement and failure. The president of the only superpower on the planet should understand his purpose with clarity and pursue it with integrity.

President Bush may not always understand how mind, larynx and mouth are supposed to work together; he my frighten timid Europeans with his assured, straightforward beliefs, but he certainly understands his purpose. When the 757s hit the Twin Towers, his entire lifetime -- early exposure to world politics, youthful misadventures, mid-life conversion, private and public sector work -- congealed into a fierce purpose: to protect American democracy, world democracy, from terrorist repressors of life, libery and happiness.

And Senator Kerry? His purpose is to be president. Beyond that, clarity fogs. The mist may be the result of his 20-year Senate career, where passion, pain, achievement and purpose were dulled by Senatorial privilege, three re-election campaigns and two remarkable successes at gold-digging. His lack of purpose is evident in his record; his staff's insistence on 59 bills in a 20-year career is both pathetic and false, and not a single piece of Kerry legislation is the result of a long-term passion for anything but pandering to the electorate.

This November, vote with a purpose.