Gut Check Pucker Factor
A rare Saturday post, however the fetching Mrs. Cordeiro has left me alone for a few hours and I'm putting off my Honey-Do list.
After checking the Real Clear Politics Poll Summary for today and yesterday, a thought struck me.
W could get 50%+ of the vote on Tuesday.
This brings up a very interesting concept. All the punditry belittled W after the 2000 election because he lacked a popular mandate to govern. So what happens if W garners say 53% of the vote on Tuesday? Will the liberals, MSM, and the rest of the whacked out lefties in the country realize they're on the wrong side of most everything?
Not likely. Still, it will be a great victory.
So, Tuesday is on the horizon. It will end the most important election in recent memory, hopefully giving W another four years in the White House.
But its not over yet. This is gut check time. This is where the battle is won - on the ground and in the trenches. You have to ask yourself the all important question - the same question posed by Jimmy Malone to Eliot Ness in The Untouchables -
What are you prepared to do?
In the immortal words of the Flight Controller in Armageddon
Gentlemen, its pucker time.
Don't just sit there. Vote W-Big Time 2004.
Here endeth the lesson.
Reflections on the National Mall
This past Monday I took the opportunity to visit the World War II Memorial on the National Mall in Washington, DC. I've been meaning to do it for a long time, but its taken until now to get myself over the Potomac River with time to sightsee.
For those of you who haven't had the chance to actually see the memorial, I highly recommend you take the time to make the pilgrimage. Its well worth it.
The memorial sits in the shadows of both the Washington Monument and the Lincoln Memorial. It memorializes both the Atlantic and Pacific theatres of that war. Inscribed along the walls are notable quotations from Eisenhower, MacArthur, Roosevelt, and others. It is truly a sight to behold.
Centered between the Atlantic and Pacific Arches is a fountain in front of which is a field of 400 Gold Stars. Each star symbolizes 1,000 people who made the journey across the seas to defend freedom and never got a chance to make the trip home. Atop the star field is the emblazoned words:
Here We Mark The Price of Freedom.
I pondered on this for a few minutes. So many people. Such carnage. Truly, as Eisenhower said, we shall not see their like again. I stand in awe of the people behind those stars. They pressed forward, onward, and upward in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds and extremely high casualties. To put the current conflict in context, the Global War on Terror would rate about 1.5 stars - 4.5 if you add the casualties of September 11, 2001. I thought about this comparison and wondered what the D-Day, Iwo Jima, and Battle of the Bulge commanders would have given to have lost just 1,000 men.
I have also often wondered what drove these men up the beaches of so many far off places. The answer to my question came as I heard my 18 month old daughter babbling as she bobbled along (as only a toddler can) the stone floor of the memorial towards me. As I picked her up and tossed her in the air the thought came to me that this was what drove them to victory. The soldiers, sailors, airmen, and marines memorialized by the star field will never have a chance to toss their daughters in the air. What drove them to do their duty was the knowledge that guys like me would have the chances they would never get.
So, on November 2nd, let the word go forth from this time and place that the Torch of Liberty still burns brightly (despite the best efforts of the Breck Girl) and has been taken up by a new and more responsible generation of Americans. We choose to do these things, undertake these missions, and fulfill this destiny not because it is easy, but because it is hard. Because the Peacemakers of the United States Armed Forces know that by shedding some of their blood here and now, future generations may be spared from adding untold gallons in later years. We shall do that which we know to be right, and by reliance on the Almighty and America's righteous might we shall see ourselves, our country, and freedom clear to absolute victory - So Help us God.
Here endeth the lesson.
View From An Earhole - Redux
Sometimes the blatant, arrogant, unilateral stupidity of some people just astounds me. No sooner has Dan "Stark Raving Naked" Rather pulled his head from the turf having made a fool of himself in front of the watching public than his place is taken (sort of anyway) by The New York Times.
I will defer to Bonjo for a rehearsal of the details surrounding the immediately debunked claim of missing explosives in Iraq. It seems that said explosives have now been found - they all went off in the collective face of The New York Times.
Returning to the ever present football metaphor, defensive linemen often get in a rut. After so many pass plays, they become accustomed to blowing by the offensive blockers with little regard for what or who they run past - including the ball carrier. It is at this time intelligent offensive coordinators call draw plays and screen passes - types of plays that usually leave over zealous defenders looking out their collective ear holes.
The media is so desperate to toss W out of the White House that they will believe anything that could possibly further their cause. Their cause has become so desperate that any appearance of neutrality has been tossed to the side.
One good thing can be said of this debacle. At least Dan Rather isn't all by himself in looking like an ass. He's just been joined by the collective at The New York Times.
Enjoy the spotlight.
Random Friday Thoughts
Apologies for the light posting this week. Unlike Breck Girl, I do have to do actual work on occasion.
Seems that Lurch and Company have struck upon the idea of declaring victory regardless of the outcome of the election. They seem to think if the election is close, Lurch will be able to assume victory and strengthen his case by declaring the race to be over. Most of me believes the election will not be close, and thus Lurch's strategy will be moot. That said, part of me hopes for a close race, if only to see Lurch have to eat his victory speech. Remember, the Yankees thought the American League Series was over after Game 3.
That bit of news is only slightly less riveting than the telling comments made by Maria Teresa Thierstein Simoes-Ferreira Heinz Kerry (deep gasp for breath), AKA Mrs Lurch or The Ketchup Queen regarding Mrs. W AKA Laura Bush. Seems that Ketchup Queen wondered aloud if Laura had ever held a job other than that of wife and mother. This from a woman who has more servants than sense. Typical limousine liberal. If Ketchup Queen had every really had to be a mother (without the live in help of untold number of nannies, nurses, and butlers) she'd know what a real job was. Open mouth. Insert foot. Would you like some ketchup with that Mrs. Maria Teresa Thierstein Simoes-Ferreira Heinz Kerry (deep gasp for breath)?
And finally, at least for this post anyway, Algore.
Former Senator, Vice-President, and (losing) Presidential candidate Albert Arnold Gore, Jr, AKA Al "I lost my home state" Gore, or Algore for short, is returning to the campaign trail in the Sunshine State of Florida. So far, Algore has managed to kill just about every campaign he's been involved with. More power to you, Algore. I'm observing the rule of ropes, in that when my enemy is busy hanging himself, go buy more rope.
Lurch's Cheney Gaffe
"The average Ruskie doesn't take a dump without a plan." - Rear Admiral Joshua Painter to Jack Ryan in The Hunt for Red OctoberJames Dwight over at Sox Blog poses an interesting question. Was Lurch's "passing" reference to Big Time Cheney's daughter's sexual orientation a slip of the mind for Lurch? Or was it a planned, polled, calculated sucker punch intended to turn conservative voters from the W-Big Time Ticket?
I have no proof for the following speculation, only my knowledge of previous democratic campaigns and the spin doctors who meticulously comb over every talking point on the road to the presidency.
Of course it was planned! For those of you thick headed readers, remember that John "Breck Girl" Edwards also made a "passing" reference to Big Time's daughter's sexual orientation.
That said, I will impart the following wisdom for which there is no charge:
The average democrat doesn't say a word save it has been field tested, focused grouped, and polled six ways to Sunday.Here endeth the lesson.
Delayed Debate Commentary
With apologies for the delay in transcribing Vinny and Guido's debate commentary, here it is. As you will no doubt remember, Vinny and Guido normally provide color commentary for boxing and professional wrestling and have recently entered the political fray. They would've done live commentary, however they were busy cleaning up a "family" cemetery someplace in Queens.
But we digress.
Lurch: Being lectured by the president on fiscal responsibility is a little bit like Tony Soprano talking to me about law and order in this country.Well said, gentlemen (excluding Lurch, of course).
Guido: Senator, I know Tony Soprano. Tony Soprano is a friend of mine and you, sir, are no Tony Soprano!
Lurch: I was hunting in Iowa last year with a sheriff from one of the counties there, and he pointed to a house in back of us, and said, "See the house over? We just did a drug bust a week earlier, and the guy we arrested had an AK-47 lying on the bed right beside him.
Vinny: Um, Senator, are you aware that last year the Assault Weapons Ban was IN PLACE?!? How did the guy get a 'banned' gun? Maybe the ban only applied to law abiding citizens and not criminals?
Lurch: You just heard the president say that young people ought to be able to take money out of Social Security and put it in their own accounts. Now, my fellow Americans, that's an invitation to disaster.
Guido: Oh, yeah. Let me get this straight. Allowing me to take some of my money and invest it for my retirement is an invitation to disaster. Disaster for you and your money grubbing, wealth redistributing cohorts, but not for me.
It may be a mid-October surprise. It may not be.
The New York Sun's Thomas Lipscomb reports today about the circumstances of Lt. (JG) John F "Lurch" Kerry's discharge from the United States Navy in 1972.
The possibility exists that Lurch may have been dishonorably discharged from the Navy, only to have that fact covered up by subsequent presidential executive orders. These details could be cleared up rather simply if Lurch would allow his entire military record to be released for public inspection.
The problem is, Lurch has yet to sign Standard Form 180 which waves his right to privacy regarding the aforementioned letters.
Looks like Lipscomb has done some fairly good research on this article. Will anything become of it? Perhaps that might just be some smoke on the election horizon.
Memo to Senator Mark Dayton (d-MN)
Regarding your recent announcement regarding the closure of your senate office due to a "Top Secret Threat", I have a few comments to make.
First off, let me tell you I'm not too impressed. I, like many other federal employees, work in close proximity to the Capitol area. I do this by choice. Every morning I come to work in my chosen profession, for the betterment of myself, my family, and indeed my country. I do so recognizing the fact I work in a target rich environment when it comes to terrorism. Doing what I do is my own way of flipping the bird to the terrorists.
Then we come to you. You are one of 535 Members of Congress - one of one hundred US Senators. We, the American people in general, and the people of Minnesota specifically, have elected you to do a job. Somehow, 534 other members of congress have somehow managed, some bravely so, to do this job without closing the offices provided to them at the expense and sacrifice of the American taxpayer.
You see, Senator, going to work is part of the American way of life. The people working at the Pentagon somehow go to work every morning. Nobody has closed their office out of fear there. We live our lives according to the dictates of our own desires and dreams. Despite the attacks of September 11, 2001 and the constant threat since that date - most Americans go about their daily lives despite that threat.
Everyone except you, Senator. I don't know if you needed your fifteen minutes of camera time this week, or maybe you feel not enough attention has been paid to you. I understand how you could feel that way. Even being the astute political junkie that I am, until this afternoon I had never heard your name before - in any context.
I am nothing if not blunt and politically incorrect. Let me get right to the point so you can get back to doing whatever it is you do.
You, sir, are a coward. Worse than that, you're a grandstanding coward.
Minnesota deserves better.
Here endeth the lesson.
Did I Hear Someone Ask for a Miracle?!
The first time I heard it I thought I was having and auditory hallucination. Now I've both heard the clip and seen the picture.
Vice Presidential Candidate John "Breck Girl" Edwards made the following statement today regarding what will happen to people suffering from spinal cord injuries should Lurch be elected president:
When John Kerry is president, people like Christopher Reeve are going to walk. Get up out of that wheelchair and walk again!I guess I shouldn't be too suprised. From what I can see, the Lurch-Breck Girl 2004 campaign could use a good dose of faith healing.
Can I get an Amen?
Christopher Reeve passed away yesterday after slipping into a coma caused by cardiac arrest. Made famous by his starring role in the Superman saga, Reeve suffered a debilitating spinal cord injury some years ago after being thrown from a horse. It was following that injury that Reeve showed just how much of a superman he really was.
He did not shy away from the public eye following his injury, rather he used his status to further the cause of medical technology to regenerate spinal nerves - the ultimate goal being that of regaining his mobility, and bringing untold thousands along with him. Many people suffering from spinal cord injuries saw him as an example of hope.
He never complained publicly about his injury. He did not allow himself to sink into despair about the hand of cards fate had dealt him. Drawing on the strength of his wife and close friends, he found the courage to move forward and do what he could to make life better for himself and others.
Sometimes in the melodrama of day to day life we lose track of what really matters. We find ourselves lost in the details just enough to miss the truly heroic actions of others. Chris Reeve was a hero, and he will be missed.
Godspeed, Chris. Welcome home.
Memo to W
Dear Mr. President:
While I hold no illusions that your presidential duties coupled with debate preparations permit you time to consult the blogosphere for debate advice, I will never the less offer such advice, as I believe said advice is far superior to most advice offered by the MSM punditry. As your time is short, I will be brief.
1. Be yourself.
This may sound simple, but its imperative. You are, despite your pedigree, an average guy from West Texas. You speak simply and plainly. Lurch does not. He loves to give answers fraught with nuance. You don't do nuance, and neither do the majority of the American people. Remember the advice of the British Admiral Lord Nelson.
Never mind the maneuvers. Always go straight at them!2. Be bold, but stop short of being overbearing.
We are at war. Americans know this. This election is all about who can lead this nation to victory in this war. Stay focused on this. Speak to the people, not to Lurch.
3. Go after the Lurch's senate record.
Big Time did a fantastic job highlighting the senate records of both Lurch and the Breck Girl. Both fall far short of anything resembling distinguished. Remember your Sun Tzu's Art of War from the Harvard Business School
If he prepares to defend many places, then the forces will be few in number.Lurch can't defend all aspects of his record. Hell, most of the time he can't even remember where he stands.
Therefore, if he prepares to defend the front, the back will be weak.
If he prepares to defend the back, the front will be weak.
If he prepares to defend the left, the right will be weak.
If he prepares to defend the right, the left will be weak.
If he prepares to defend everywhere, everywhere will be weak.
4. Perceived weakness is an advantage
Lurch thinks he has you on the ropes. That is a good thing. I again point you to General Tzu:
If your opponent is of choleric temper, seek to irritate him. Pretend to be weak, that he may grow arrogant.Follwing that with Wang Tzu:
The good tactician plays with his adversary as a cat plays with a mouse, first feigning weakness and immobility, and then suddenly pouncing upon him.Sylvester Stallone's Rocky Balboa epitomized this strategy at the end of the first Rocky. He allowed Apollo Creed to believe he was winning, only to have Rocky pummel him with body blows. Now is the time for body blows. Lurch has a glass jaw. He doesn't take criticism well. How will you know you're getting under his skin? He'll remind you he served in Vietnam.
Mr. President, its time to be subtly ruthless. You do this very well, I know. I've seen it. Don't over prepare for this show. Speak to the people, not to Lurch. Use humor to your advantage. Every time Lurch tries to be funny its painful - for him, and for us.
I'll freely admit I'm one of your most ardent supporters. I don't want you just to beat this guy. I want you to open up a large can of good old fashioned Texas Whoopass on the arrogant, elitist, frenchified pansy that is the Junior Senator from Massachusetts.
That said, I'll let you get back to your debate prep. Good luck.
Go get 'em, W.
Here endeth the lesson.
When Bill Gertz speaks...
Bill Gertz is the acclaimed national security correspondent for the Washington Times. His sources are, unlike Dan "Stark Raving Naked" Rather, unimpeachable. He knows his stuff.
His latest article in the Washington Times is a scathing indictment of Iraq, the United Nations Oil for Food Program, and last but not least, France. It details how Saddam paid off French officials, up to and including the Defense Minister, the Interior Minister, and people close to Jacques Chirac. The details of this report are scathing. Read the whole thing.
Then ask yourself, could the completely corrupt UN Oil for Food Program, which was in place until the fall of Saddam in 2003, have anything to do with the reluctance of the French and other European nations to participate in the liberation of Iraq? Could it be that the leaders of said countries were lining their pockets with illicitly obtained oil wealth and didn't want the tap to be shut off?
Corruption at the highest levels of France and the UN? I'm shocked, and appalled.
Gloves are off
For those of you interested in what W actually said in Wilkes-Barre, PA yesterday, you can read the transcript of his remarks here. The long and the short of this speech is - the gloves are coming off, and there just might be some brass knuckles heading for Lurch and Company.
The speech is on message, on point, and takes direct aim Lurch's 20 year record, or lack there of, in the US Senate.
Well said, Mr. President. Lurch, the wind is coming.
Twenty-seven days from today Americans will make a critical choice.
My opponent offers an agenda that is stuck in the thinking and the policies of the past. On national security, he offers the defensive mindset of September the 10th: a global test to replace American leadership, a strategy of retreat in Iraq and a 20-year history of weakness in the United States Senate.
Here at home, he offers a record and an agenda of more taxes and more spending and more litigation and more government control over your life.
The race for president is a contest for the future, and you know where I stand.
I'm running for president to keep this nation on the offensive against terrorists, with the goal of total victory.
I'm running for president to keep this economy moving so every worker has a good job and quality health care and a secure retirement.
I'm running for president to make our nation a more compassionate society, where no one is left out, where every life matters.
I will carry this message to my fellow citizens in the closing days of this campaign. And with your help, we will win a great victory on November the 2nd.
God bless. God bless our great country.
Here endeth the lesson.
Out Classed and Out Gunned by Big Time
My commentary regarding the Vice Presidential debate last night can be summed up in one simple sentence:
Senator John "Breck Girl" Edwards, Junior Senator from North Carolina is still not ready for Prime Time.
Vice President Dick "Big Time" Cheney took Breck Girl to school last night. Big Time was un-fazed and unruffled in the face of Breck Girl's best attempts at a broadside. Every time he thought he scored, Big Time came right back with facts. Breck Girl is very unaccustomed to the use of facts. After all, when the hair and makeup are removed, he's just another blood sucking, ambulance chasing, scum sucking personal injury trial lawyer.
Perhaps I should avoid using positive adjectives to describe lawyers.
Big Time did one very important thing last night. He very successfully put Lurch's 20 year senate record back at center stage. He would have done the same with Breck Girl's record, but you see, he's missed so many Senate votes and committee meetings that there isn't really a record to expose. Frankly, I think Big Time's description of Breck Girl's record as "not very distinguished" was very gentle.
Facts are stubborn things. This debate showed a stark difference between two men running for a job "a heart beat away" from the presidency. One looked and sounded like an elder statesman schooled in the art of politics, diplomacy, and war. The other looked like a deer caught in the headlights of an oncoming train.
You tell me which one is which.
Much has been made over the weekend about W’s supposed lack luster performance in the Thursday night debate. Now, while I will admit that he didn’t give his best showing during that debate - at times he looked downright bored – I do not believe that alone will dictate the outcome of the election. In fact, I believe I see some political strategery in the way W is taking on Lurch.
Now remember one undeniable truth of life – everything can be related to football. There are many ways one can compare football to politics, but my commentary today involves the movie Remember the Titans. It starred Denzel Washington and is truly one of the better football movies every made.
As the boys get ready to go camp, Coach Boone (played by Denzel) is challenged as to the lack of variety in his offensive playbook. Explaining his philosophy, Boone said the following:
This is the answer to the critics who claim W kept repeating the same charges about Lurch, over and over. There is strategery here, people. W has six things he wants people to remember about Lurch:I run six plays – they’re all Split Veers. Like Novocain, give it time, it always works.
1. He changes his mind more often than he changes his shorts.
2. He will not act in the best interest of America, unless of course its in the best interest of France.
3. He loves to spend your money on his priorities.
4. He will do what is politically expedient, not necessarily what is right.
5. He cannot be trusted to lead the United States Armed Forces in time of war.
6. His face has been bio-chemically altered to appear as living flesh.
Ok, so maybe I added one to the list. You pick which one I added.
Lurch did very well with nuance during the debate. W, by his own admission, doesn’t “do” nuance. Neither do the American people.
I believe W has taken a page from the play book of the British Admiral Lord Nelson of long ago. When over hearing a young officer explain the tactics of maneuver to another sailor, Nelson declared the following:
Never mind maneuver, sir. Always go straight at them!Here endeth the lesson.
The Global Test
I was on a plane last night - returning from a business trip to the land northward (Canada for those geographically challenged readers) - so I didn't get to watch the debate as it unfolded live on the air. Thankfully, Bonjo taped it for me.
And with due respect to RoninKengo's comment, Lurch did not win the debate. In fact, he stumbled into a Michael Dukakis moment that may in fact finally sink the SS Lurch. As an example of this, I submit the following exchange from the debate transcript:
LEHRER: New question. Two minutes, Senator Kerry.This election will be won or lost on the candidate's ability to convince the American people he is ready, willing, and able to defend the United States from all enemies - regardless of whether or not any "Global Test" has been passed.
What is your position on the whole concept of preemptive war?
KERRY: The president always has the right, and always has had the right, for preemptive strike. That was a great doctrine throughout the Cold War. And it was always one of the things we argued about with respect to arms control.
No president, though all of American history, has ever ceded, and nor would I, the right to preempt in any way necessary to protect the United States of America.
But if and when you do it, Jim, you have to do it in a way that passes the test, that passes the global test where your countrymen, your people understand fully why you're doing what you're doing and you can prove to the world that you did it for legitimate reasons.
LEHRER: Ninety seconds.
BUSH: Let me -- I'm not exactly sure what you mean, "passes the global test," you take preemptive action if you pass a global test.
My attitude is you take preemptive action in order to protect the American people, that you act in order to make this country secure.
Lurch may have come across as polished and articulate - possibly even likeable. So far, the press has labeled W as "annoyed". Well, I'd be annoyed too if I had to put up with the constant drivel that emanated forth from the mouth of Lurch last night.
Perhaps W didn't change any minds last night. He didn't need to. His performance was solid - he said what he had to say and defended his record. Where Lurch was wrong, as was the case many times - specifically regarding North Korea, W called him on it.
Lurch, as will soon be noted, changed no minds last night. Field goals don't mean much when you're down by several touchdowns.
Here endeth the lesson.