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John McCain's Perfect Ride

[Cross-posted from The Trail.]

[UPDATE: Fixed the double-post. Sorry about that. Horrifically, the wireless access in the hall where McCain was speaking was a virtual nullity, rendering me cut off from civilization -- and surrounded by rabid CPAC conventioneers!

Headline: McCain booed a little, but the boo-birds were drowned out by cheers from McCainiacs who had somehow jammed the room even as many hundreds of folks were stuck out in a long line in the hallway.

At the end of this item I will post a partial transcript of what McCain said.]


How did John McCain become the certain Republican nominee? With what they call in horse racing a perfect ride.

Yes, there was that rather large stumble last year. The word "imploded" is the officially sanctioned journalistic term for what happened to the McCain campaign. But his timing was fabulous! Last anyone checked, the spring of 2007 had no scheduled primaries or caucuses. For candidates, reporters and political junkies, the campaign was going great guns, but for citizens, which is to say, voters, it was an off year.

When the voting began, McCain consistently won where he had to win. He skipped Iowa and proved that it didn't matter. He maximized his delegate count per vote. He won South Carolina narrowly with 33 percent of the vote to Huckabee's 30 percent, but he got 18 delegates and Huckabee got only 6. He won Florida with a titanic total, by McCain standards, of about 36 percent of the vote, and swept up all 57 delegates. With 42 percent of the vote in California he got almost every delegate up for grabs (149 to Romney's 6, according to AP). All told, McCain won 4,114,973 votes, while Romney snagged 3,471,691 and Huckabee 2,130,469.

E.J. Dionne today described how McCain's ride managed to skirt the South and the Mountain West and, in essence, the base of the Republican Party. That's going wide and ceding the rail, but McCain found good footing.

His perfect ride began before the election even got rolling, as Tony Blankley pointed out yesterday in The Washington Times. The strongest Republican candidate, Jeb Bush, found himself as a member of the one family in America effectively prohibited from offering a candidate. And George Allen stepped in macaca.

And perhaps a part of McCain's perfect ride happened a year ago, when McCain skipped the CPAC convention altogether.

It was risky. Everyone else showed up to woo the hardcore conservatives. Rudy Giuliani bombed, and though he went on to spend 2007 as the titular front-runner, the stony silence that greeted him at the Omni Shoreham may have prefigured his inability to connect with the party's base. Giuliani spent much of his speech praising Abraham Lincoln, apparently unaware that, in this particular crowd, Lincoln is widely hated (on doctrinal grounds involving federal government overreach, etc.).

The star of the show was Mitt Romney, who trucked in busloads of supporters, then touched on all the Reaganesque themes with perfect pitch. Few people have ever tried harder, or spent more money, or crafted ideological positions more feverishly, to ingratiate themselves with a political party's base. But he could never shake the odor of inauthenticity. It's fitting that Romney used CPAC as the place to make his exit.

McCain will probably never persuade conservatives that he is truly one of them. And by skipping CPAC last year, he avoided having to contort himself.

He'll show up at CPAC today, and it'll be interesting to see what he says. Mike Allen on WTOP this morning wondered aloud if McCain would be booed. This can be an edgy crowd. But the party's Far Right is no longer sitting in the power position. McCain is.


[Here's an excerpt of the prepared remarks of McCain. He stuck to them pretty closely, as he used a Teleprompter:

I know I have a responsibility, if I am, as I hope to be, the Republican nominee for President, to unite the party and prepare for the great contest in November. And I am acutely aware that I cannot succeed in that endeavor, nor can

our party prevail over the challenge we will face from either Senator Clinton or Senator Obama, without the support of dedicated conservatives, whose convictions, creativity and energy have been indispensible to the success our party has had over the last quarter century. Many of you have disagreed strongly with some positions I have taken in recent years. I understand that. I might not agree with it, but I respect it for the principled position it is. And it is my sincere hope that even if you believe I have occasionally erred in my reasoning as a fellow conservative, you will still allow that I have, in many ways important to all of us, maintained the record of a conservative. Further, I hope you will grant that I have defended many positions we share just as ardently as I have made my case for positions that have provoked your opposition. If not, thank you for this opportunity to make my case today.

I am proud to be a conservative, and I make that claim because I share with you that most basic of conservative principles: that liberty is a right conferred by our Creator, not by governments, and that the proper object of justice and the rule of law in our country is not to aggregate power to the state but to protect the liberty and property of its citizens. And like you, I understand, as Edmund Burke observed, that "whenever a separation is made between liberty and justice, neither . . . is safe."

While I have long worked to help grow a public majority of support for Republican candidates and principles, I have also always believed, like you, in the wisdom of Ronald Reagan, who warned in an address to this conference in 1975, that "a political party cannot be all things to all people. It must represent certain fundamental beliefs which must not be compromised to political expediency or simply to swell its numbers."

I attended my first CPAC conference as the invited guest of Ronald Reagan, not long after I had returned from overseas, when I heard him deliver his "shining city upon a hill" speech. I was still a naval officer then, but his words inspired and helped form my own political views, just as Ronald Reagan's defense of America's cause in Vietnam and his evident concern for American prisoners of war in that conflict inspired and were a great comfort to those of us who, in my friend Jerry Denton's words, had the honor of serving "our country under difficult circumstances." I am proud, very proud, to have come to public office as a foot soldier in the Reagan Revolution. And if a few of my positions have raised your concern that I have forgotten my political heritage, I want to assure you that I have not, and I am as proud of that association today as I was then. My record in public office taken as a whole is the record of a mainstr eam conservative. I believe today, as I believed twenty-five years ago, in small government; fiscal discipline; low taxes; a strong defense, judges who enforce, and not make, our laws; the social values that are the true source of our strength; and, generally, the steadfast defense of our rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, which I have defended my entire career as God-given to the born and unborn.

Those are my beliefs, and you need not examine only my past votes and speeches to assure yourselves that they are my genuine convictions. You can take added confidence from the positions I have defended during this campaign. I campaigned in Iowa in opposition to agriculture subsidies. I campaigned in New Hampshire against big government mandated health care and for a free market solution to the problem of unavailable and unaffordable health care. I campaigned in Michigan for the tax incentives and trade policies that will create new and better jobs in that economically troubled state. I campaigned in Florida against the national catastrophic insurance fund bill that passed the House of Representatives and defended my opposition to the prescription drug benefit bill that saddled Americans with yet another hugely expensive entitlement program. I have argued to make the Bush tax cuts permanent, to reduce the corporate tax rate and abolish the AMT. I have defended my position on protecting our Second Amendment rights, including my votes against waiting periods, bans on the so-called "assault weapons," and illegitimate lawsuits targeting gun manufacturers. I have proudly defended my twenty-four year pro-life record. Throughout this campaign, I have defended the President's brave decision to increase troop levels in Iraq to execute a long overdue counterinsurgency that has spared us the terrible calamity of losing that war. I held these positions because I believed they were in the best interests of my party and country."

Surely, I have held other positions that have not met with widespread agreement from conservatives. I won't pretend otherwise nor would you permit me to forget it. On the issue of illegal immigration, a position which provoked the outspoken opposition of many conservatives, I stood my ground aware that my position would imperil my campaign. I respect your opposition for I know that the vast majority of critics to the bill based their opposition in a principled defense of the rule of law. And while I and other Republican supporters of the bill were genuine in our intention to restore control of our borders, we failed, for various and understandable reasons, to convince Americans that we were. I accept that, and have pledged that it would be among my highest priorities to secure our borders first, and only after we achieved widespread consensus that our borders are secure, would we address other aspects of the problem in a wa y that defends the rule of law and does not encourage another wave of illegal immigration.

All I ask of any American, conservative, moderate, independent, or enlightened Democrat, is to judge my record as a whole, and accept that I am not in the habit of making promises to my country that I do not intend to keep.

By Joel Achenbach  |  February 7, 2008; 1:58 PM ET
 
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Comments

first?

Posted by: dr | February 7, 2008 2:08 PM | Report abuse

Joel, the first half of the story is posted twice.

Posted by: shrieking denizen | February 7, 2008 2:09 PM | Report abuse

I see everything twice!

Posted by: Ivansmom | February 7, 2008 2:14 PM | Report abuse

Joel said "titular." Tee hee.

I'll repeat what I said yesterday... the supposed conservative "core" of the Republican party has been shown for what they really are: the radicals.

Posted by: TBG | February 7, 2008 2:15 PM | Report abuse

First? (Note: that isn't the same as "Frist.")

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 7, 2008 2:16 PM | Report abuse

The Odor of Inauthenticity-

"I love the smell of inauthenticity in the morning. You know, one time we had a precinct canvassed, for 12 hours. When it was all over, I walked up. We didn't find one of 'em, not one stinkin' voter. The smell, you know that insincere smell, the whole hill. Smelled like... third place. Someday this campaign's gonna end... "
[Romney unhappily walks off]

Posted by: kurosawaguy | February 7, 2008 2:18 PM | Report abuse

I'd love it if McCain went in there and instead of making nice and kissing their you-knows he basically told them off and read them the Riot Act. He could do it. And a lot of people would respect him for it.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 7, 2008 2:18 PM | Report abuse

Where'd all the comments go. On the kit it says 7, in here there only 3 (Well 4 now).

Posted by: omni | February 7, 2008 2:20 PM | Report abuse

OK that was weird. It was not a refresh issue but something stranger???

Posted by: omni | February 7, 2008 2:21 PM | Report abuse

You're half-cured, Ivansmom!

Posted by: dbG | February 7, 2008 2:22 PM | Report abuse

It has been fascinating to watch McCain roll across the country. I like the tone of the Kit and look forward to our own CPAC McCain update. I liked him the last time he ran - of course, given the opposition, who wouldn't - but only in a I-wouldn't-mind-if-he-were-elected sort of way. Then, as now, I wouldn't have voted for him.

Circumstances have changed now, and although I respect and admire McCain for many reasons I hope he is defeated in the general election (assuming he's the candidate). I doubt his interest in or competence regarding domestic economic matters, which are vital now. More important, he'd keep my as-yet-unborn grandchildren in Iraq if it takes that long. I suspect anybody who puts a priority on getting out of the war will vote for the Democratic candidate, whoever it is. That's a nice clear choice.

Of course, if Huckable is the veep candidate, McCain is a lot less viable nationwide. He'd pick up the Republican conservatives who won't vote for him, but lose all those independents and moderates who don't want to rewrite the constitution to resemble God's law.

Posted by: Ivansmom | February 7, 2008 2:27 PM | Report abuse

The last paragraph is brilliant. In five tight sentences the reader is made to fully realize that something truly epic has occurred. In terms of dramatic pith they remind me of "These Proceedings are Closed."


Posted by: RD Padouk | February 7, 2008 2:27 PM | Report abuse

Proposed Speech of John McCain to CPAC -

My friends, we live in a world that has elections, and those elections have to be contested by men with war records. Whose gonna do it? Romney? Huckabee? I have a greater responsibility than you could possibly fathom. You weep for Bush, and you curse the bipartisans. You have that luxury. You have the luxury of not knowing what I know. That Bush's end of term, while tragic, probably saves lives. And my existence, while grotesque and incomprehensible to you, brings votes. You don't want the truth because deep down in places you don't talk about at parties, you want me on that podium, you need me on that podium. We use words like electability, fairness, bipartisanship. We use these words as the backbone of a life spent defending special interests. You use them as a punchline. I have neither the time nor the inclination to explain myself to a man who rises and sleeps under the blanket of the very credibility that I provide, and then questions the manner in which I provide it. I would rather you just said thank you, and went on your way, Otherwise, I suggest you pick up a lobbyist, and get a contribution. Either way, I don't give a damn what you think you are entitled to.

(With apologies to Jack Nicholson)

Posted by: kurosawaguy | February 7, 2008 2:38 PM | Report abuse

ROTFL, K-guy. He totally should say that.

Posted by: Wilbrod | February 7, 2008 2:45 PM | Report abuse

Shuttle launch was a visual disappointment--just enough clouds to limit visibility.

Posted by: Dave of the Coonties | February 7, 2008 2:48 PM | Report abuse

Wow, K-guy and I are on the same wavelength. I just finished my version:

If I were John McCain's speechwriter, this would be my first draft:

"Good afternoon. As I'm sure all of you know by now. Mitt Romney is, or soon will, be dropping out of the race. That means it's all over, and I'm the Republican nominee for president. I'm *your* nominee, too, whether you like it or not. So deal with it.

"If you came here expecting to hear me cozy up to you folks, to try to convince you in some way that I'm some sort of 'authentic" Conservative, well, you've got another think coming. Of course I'm a Conservative; always have been, always will be...and every damn fool in the country knows it but you people here in this room. I may or may not be the heir to Ronald Reagan, but by God I'm the heir and successor to Barry Goldwater, and you folks d@mn well know it.

"Now, you can listen to some pill-popping loudmouth on the radio, or you can listen to me. You can listen to some crazed harridan who now claims she'll vote for Hillary rather than me. You can listen to Laura and Sean and Bill and Hugh and all the rest of the jabbering blowhards on the airwaves, who all make their living not by telling the truth but by simply being provocative and opinionated, or you can listen to me.

"And here's what I've got to say. You think I need you...but I don't. I did just fine without you during the primaries, and I'll do just fine without you during the general election. I'm going to go out there - alone if I have to - and fight the good fight, and if I lose I lose, and so be it. And if I win, you'll know where to find me if you want something from me...1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, and you're not gonna like my terms. And if I lose, you know what's gonna happen? Those people on the other side of the aisle are gonna come after you, and they're gonna mop you up like the VC mopped up Saigon in 75. And they aren't gonna take prisoners, and I don't blame them. You folks have needed a good housecleaning for a long time now.

"So here's how it's gonna be: Fall in line. Do it now. Do it today. I've got people who have pencils and they're taking names. They're making a list and checking it twice, so decide if you want to be naughty or nice. You've got 48 hours: the next primary's on Saturday.

"I've taken all the crap from you people I'm going to take. I'm sick and tired of your smug, sanctimonious self-righteousness. You think it's neat that you Swift-boated a veteran like John Kerry, but before that some of YOU folks did the same thing to me in South Carolina. Now it's payback time for those people. I don't believe in torture, as you all know, but I'm just dandy for executions. Here's the new mantra: You are Republicans first and Conservatives second, not the other way 'round. You've stood by for nearly eight years and let a moron and his incompetent cronies ruin our party and ruin our reputation and standing in the world. You let our foreign policy be run by a power-mad vice-president pulling the strings from his undisclosed bunker. You've been enablers of the worst sort. Those of you in the Congress and the Senate have been derelict in your oversight responsibilities, and those of you back home have shut your eyes to it all. You've been @sskissers and suck-ups. It's d@mn well time that came to a screeching stop.

"Well, it stops now. That's all I have to say...for now.

"Thank you; enjoy the rest of your day. Don't choke on your manhattans."

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 7, 2008 2:50 PM | Report abuse

Hey everyone. I'm trying like mad (really!) not to explode, so bear with me. . .

And it has nothing to do w/ politics. So, again, bear with me.

I just got a new computer this week, with mostly everything loaded onto it (by a friend, Ivansmom, in OKC, OK). It's a Gateway with Vista (which takes some getting used to -- it's a little too cute in parts, which doesn't in the least impress an old f @ r t like me). And whaddya know -- the email doesn't work! I can get incoming, but cannot send worth a d @ m n. So, I've spent a day on the phone with Comcast and half a day on the phone with a seemingly nice guy in Bangalore with Microsoft (I use Outlook), and nothing's fixed. The error message is that my email user name and/or password cannot be recognized by the server. So I go to the Comcast web site to access my mail, which means I have to sign in using my user name and password. And guess what??? (*drum roll*) -- it works! I can access my account and everything. Get back into Outlook, and ----- no!

So in the meantime, have not been working on my actual billable work, thereby losing money, and going completely, certifiably, ape--you know. . . .

Can any of my fellow boodlers be of help??? You really don't want FTB to be persistently and interminably cranky, do ya?

Thanks in advance.

*sigh*

Posted by: firsttimeblogger | February 7, 2008 2:53 PM | Report abuse

The significance of a diminished right wing goes far beyond McCain. That the Hewitts and Roves and Limbaughs of the country no longer call the shots for the Republican party suggests greater opportunities for bipartisan action. This helps everyone. Even if McCain loses badly in November his achievement will have served the nation well.

Posted by: RD Padouk | February 7, 2008 2:56 PM | Report abuse

You guys heard about this?

"Rocky Mountain News

Former ABC reporter killed in skiing accident

By Tillie Fong, Rocky Mountain News
Originally published 06:28 p.m., February 6, 2008 Updated 06:28 p.m., February 6, 2008

"A former ABC News correspondent died Wednesday after skiing into a tree at Keystone resort.

John McWethy, 61, of Boulder was pronounced dead at Summit Medical Center in Frisco.

"Keystone Ski Resort, the Keystone Ski Patrol and the Vail family extend their deepest sympathy and support to all of his family and friends," said Kate Lessman, spokeswoman for Keystone Resort.

The incident on the Porcupine trail, a blue intermediate run, happened shortly before 10:10 a.m., when the ski patrol was alerted.

McWethy was skiing fast when he missed a turn, sliding chest-first into a tree, according to Joanne Richardson, Summit County coroner.

He was wearing a helmet at the time.
Ski patrol responded and provided life support, and McWethy was transported to the hospital. It was not known Wednesday who alerted the authorities or if anyone was skiing with him at the time.

The Summit County coroner's office has determined that the cause of death was blunt force chest injuries and that the death was accidental.

McWethy moved to Boulder last fall. He served as a correspondent for ABC News from 1979-2003, and was the network's chief national security correspondent from 1984-2003. He was at the Pentagon on Sept. 11, 2001, when the building was struck by an American Airlines plane hijacked by terrorists.

McWethy retired from ABC News in 2003, and served as a special correspondent for ABC News from 2003-2006.

------------

RIP. I liked him.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 7, 2008 2:56 PM | Report abuse

k-guy-stop already. All my jeans are in the wash so if I soil these from laughing too hard I'll be forced to wear flannel pajama pants to meetings this afternoon.

Mudge, Scotty, Don-your praise, and thanks are undeserved, but appreciated.

A thing about John McCain and his "support" of a "permanent" presence in Iraq. I know he is a big supporter of the Iraq war, and surge in particular, but I would like to note that he is the only realist in the bunch (of either party) when it comes to how long we'll have folks in Iraq. The permanent vs. temporary designation does little to affect what we spend, or even how many people we have stationed in a country but it has a lot to do with how crappy conditions are for the people who do get sent there. We have had Soldiers and Airmen in Honduras since 1983 and packing a box of nails in your luggage is still a good idea because in Soto Cono, a temporary base, they are still living in wooden and tin "hooches." These were supposed to be replaced with more permanent buildings in '05 but $ went elsewhere (imagine that). It took 50 years for soldiers far from the dmz in Korea to get out of quonset huts and into hard structures.

I should note the same goes for foreign military serving here. The warren of trailers they work out of at Centcom is a silly concession to the fiction that their presence is not intended to be permanent.

Posted by: frostbitten | February 7, 2008 2:56 PM | Report abuse

Mudge... if McCain gave that speech, even I might vote for him!

Posted by: TBG | February 7, 2008 2:58 PM | Report abuse

firsttimeblogger,
I was bothered last night by the same inability to send email, even though the connection wizard or whatever was reassuring about email using the same connections as Internet Explorer.

Used Mozilla Thunderbird instead. The outgoing mail flew.

Stupid way to fix a problem, but I don't want to be like the math grad student who went to great effort to find a formal solution to something that had easily been worked simply and accurately using Excel.

Posted by: Dave of the Coonties | February 7, 2008 3:02 PM | Report abuse

Mudge-if McCain gave that speech it would be hard for either Obama or Clinton to stop him (I think it's going to be hard anyway, despite the mess his party has gotten us into).

Posted by: frostbitten | February 7, 2008 3:02 PM | Report abuse

FTB,

Although I run a Windows PC at home (work is all Mac all the time), I avoid MS products for browsing and email. Try Firefox and Thunderbird from Mozilla. They're both free downloads that are proven to perform and are constantly updated. Most viruses and worms and other cyber attackers are designed to go after MS products, so avoiding MS makes life easier in that way too.

Posted by: crc | February 7, 2008 3:04 PM | Report abuse

For reasons that can be boiled down to "lazy early adopter" I use AOL for most e-mail. On my new laptop, with Vista, AOL mail inexplicably stopped working last week-the new mail alert would sound but no new mail was visible. I could send outgoing mail by replying to an old e-mail but could not send anything new. It wasn't anything to do with my connection or ISP since my old laptop and desk top were just dandy. I ended up uninstalling AOL and reinstalling it. A pain, but it did the trick.

Posted by: frostbitten | February 7, 2008 3:07 PM | Report abuse

Don't have much time for boodling these days, but I saw something that struck me.

"The Archbishop of Canterbury says the adoption of certain aspects of Sharia law in the UK "seems unavoidable".
Dr Rowan Williams told Radio 4's World at One that the UK has to "face up to the fact" that some of its citizens do not relate to the British legal system.

"Dr Williams argues that adopting parts of Islamic Sharia law would help maintain social cohesion.

"For example, Muslims could choose to have marital disputes or financial matters dealt with in a Sharia court.

"He says Muslims should not have to choose between 'the stark alternatives of cultural loyalty or state loyalty."

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/7232661.stm

I wonder how that would go down in the US or Canada, considering some US politicians seem to push a Baptist version of it.

Posted by: LTL-CA | February 7, 2008 3:08 PM | Report abuse

LTL, he'd be strung him up from a streetlamp.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 7, 2008 3:10 PM | Report abuse

LTL-CA, a form of Sharia law was considered here where I live in Ontario, it was ultimately turned down.

Posted by: dmd | February 7, 2008 3:13 PM | Report abuse

The story from Ontario (couple of years old now).

http://www.cbc.ca/canada/story/2005/09/09/sharia-protests-20050909.html

Posted by: dmd | February 7, 2008 3:15 PM | Report abuse

Amplifying a bit on what I said a Kit ago...

It's a delicious, wonderful bit of inadvertent justice to watch Laura Ingraham tout the Mittster as "the Conservative's Conservative" just before he says "I cannot win, and I'll just hurt the party if I stay."

:-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | February 7, 2008 3:18 PM | Report abuse

Those are great speeches guys but ,the more I think about the administration admitting it tortures people and reserves the right to continue doing it, I'm in need of some extreme cheering up.
Has anyone checked on the guy living under Joel's stairs? He must be seriously bummed out.

I don't see how any country can participate in operations with a nation that is run by admitted criminals.

Posted by: Boko999 | February 7, 2008 3:19 PM | Report abuse

I think McCain is entirely beatable; ultimately, he's wrong on the war, and something like 65 percent of the public are opposed to it.

Even better, I can't think of a single likely running mate for him who I think would help, rather than hurt him.

On a personal level, I tend to like McCain, but of course I couldn't vote for him in a thousand years. As Joel put it so correctly, McCain had a "perfect ride" -- but he can't keep it up through November; no one can. Primaries are different from general elections in several significant ways. At the end of the day the GOP has a fatal flaw that even McCain cannot overcome: they've been in power for nearly eight years and have bungled badly; it is time for a new broom to sweep clean, and more Republicans are NOT the answer to that problem. Given a competent campaign by the Dems, it is unbeatable (note the caveat).

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 7, 2008 3:23 PM | Report abuse

FTB, do you need Outlook? You can get Eudora from Qualcomm for free, although I see on their web site that support isn't available any more and someone else will/may take over the product --

http://www.eudora.com/

There must be other free ones, too. I use Eurdora at home and think it's pretty good.

Posted by: LTL-CA | February 7, 2008 3:28 PM | Report abuse

Boy, I'd break with the Archbishop on that one. If Great Britain allows Sharia law for certain things, why not canon law for Catholics? How about the Jewish law for certain cultural aspects? Why have a state-imposed secular rule of law binding the whole country at all?

People have got to get their heads around the idea of citizenship, including its privileges and responsibilities.

Posted by: Ivansmom | February 7, 2008 3:28 PM | Report abuse

Mudge-Frostuncle and I were caucusing together, he's a Clinton fan, and we both noted that at least this year we should be able to vote without holding our noses. (DFLers through and through, we are the original "yellow dog" democrats) He pointed out that there is a lot of campaigning to go and someone could attract a lot of stink between now and November. Too true.

Posted by: frostbitten | February 7, 2008 3:30 PM | Report abuse

omni... I hate to step on any toes, but here's another quiz...

http://reverent.org/an_artist_or_an_ape.html

Posted by: TBG | February 7, 2008 3:30 PM | Report abuse

Only one wrong - the first one.

Posted by: dmd | February 7, 2008 3:34 PM | Report abuse

100% correct- We Darwinians have a natural understanding and affinity for ape-think.

Posted by: kurosawaguy | February 7, 2008 3:36 PM | Report abuse

No worries TBG. a clue? half and half artist/ape I just picked all ape as I'm clueless about that kind of art. thus I scored 50%. But if you ask me I really should get 100%. Art/fart

Posted by: omni | February 7, 2008 3:36 PM | Report abuse

Although I do think they should say "human artist" and "ape artist."

Posted by: kurosawaguy | February 7, 2008 3:37 PM | Report abuse

When in the dumps share some umbrage.
Hey MoDowd. Check this out. There's even a quiz.
http://www.236.com/news/2008/02/06/super_wednesday_means_super_do_4181.php

Posted by: Boko999 | February 7, 2008 3:38 PM | Report abuse

This isn't an Outlook problem. We think it's a network card problem. I've got someone looking for another network card (my new computer should be colored "lemon" yellow). Right now I'm using an adapter between my Comcast box and my computer -- and that might be causing some difficulties.

I used Eudora for years before it cra pp ed out, and with no support, I'm no longer interested. Also, Outlook (I hesitate to admit) is required for the law firm I'm Of Counsel with, so there we are. Outlook is fine, and I'm pretty much used to it, mostly.

*sigh*

Posted by: firsttimeblogger | February 7, 2008 3:39 PM | Report abuse

boko-Another reason other nations should be reluctant to join in operations with the US is our complete arrogance with regard to NATO and combined operations. Apparently single handedly saving Europe and the "free world" in WWII justifies our Generals being in command of the forces of others in perpetuity, but never ever are we going to have our soldiers taking orders from one of youse.

Posted by: frostbitten | February 7, 2008 3:41 PM | Report abuse

Frosti, if the plural of mouse is mice, and the plural of louse is lice, is the plural of youse yice?

Posted by: kurosawaguy | February 7, 2008 3:45 PM | Report abuse

I agree that McCain is very beatable. But I don't think the Democrats can rely on dissatisfaction over Iraq to push them to victory. Although I believe the current relative calm simply means that the Beast is taking a deep breath, there is still a perception among many moderates that things are getting better. I don't see the rage that spurred the Dems to victory in 2006.

Posted by: RD Padouk | February 7, 2008 3:45 PM | Report abuse

I think if McCain gets the nod (like it appears right now) he will be a tough adversary for any of the current Dems still in the primaries. It may depend on what the state of the economy is in October/November as much as anything. McCain admits to not being wonked on economic matters, and that can hurt. However, if things stabilize or uptick a bit, then I think national security issues come into play. If he can somehow minimize his postion as taking "as long as it takes" in Iraq and Afghanistan", he is a credible candidate.

I'm debating in my head whether an Obama/Clinton (or vice-versa) ticket would carry the day. The two of them did not rule out that consideration at the last debate, which means both have at least entertained the idea. Or does Obama look for a running mate with solid international credentials (Biden or Richardson), and Clinton opt for a popular governor or ex-governor (Warner of Virginia, maybe?)?

Posted by: ebtnut | February 7, 2008 3:46 PM | Report abuse

k-guy-the plural of youse is "youse guys."

Posted by: frostbitten | February 7, 2008 3:50 PM | Report abuse

K-Guy and Mudge - brilliant!

Posted by: SonofCarl | February 7, 2008 3:55 PM | Report abuse

firsttimeblogger - Without knowing your exact network setup it is difficult to give precise corrective action but will try to give you something to try.

1. I assume you set your username, password, SMTP & POP address, etc. into LOOK-OUT, er, I mean Outlook. Your call to Comcast should have gone through all of that. Hopefully they gave you all the boxes to check and uncheck.

2. If the above doesn't do it: When it is convenient, turn off everything that is on the network; cable modem, routers, computers, hubs, switches, printers, scanners, whatever. Leave them off for AT LEAST 1 hour. Better still, overnight.

Turn on just the cable modem and wait at least 5 minutes.
Turn on the next device downstream from the modem (Router?) Wait at least 5 minutes for the router to start up. If you have a VOIP modem, wait 10 minutes for that to start then start the router.
Turn on the computer and let it boot up fully.
You should have your email back up now. Turn on any other network devices that were turned off.

3. If the above did not work, simply leave everything on overnight. Sometimes. It. Just. Fixes. Itself. (Thanks, Comcast/Microsoft.)

You can try other programs if you like but they still may not work. The basic problem is that either the router or the modem sees a new device connected and says to itself "Intruder!". The key is turning everthing off long enough that it wants to make new friends, and waiting for each device in the chain to get started properly before giving it some more work to do.

Good Luck!

Posted by: DLD | February 7, 2008 3:56 PM | Report abuse

News Flash! Washington Football Coach named-

Following in the footsteps of such legends of the game as George Halas, Paul Brown, and Al Davis, Redskins owner Daniel M. Snyder named himself head coach of the team today. Although he has no previous experience either playing or coaching, the diminutive billionaire was upbeat at the press conference announcing his decision. "I've watched a Hall of Famer perform these duties for the last four years and I feel confident going forward. How hard could it be?"

Had you gong there for just a second didn't I, Mudge?

Posted by: kurosawaguy | February 7, 2008 3:59 PM | Report abuse

Obama picks Biden; Hillary picks Richardson.

Here's how you run against McCain: you ignore him. You run against Bush, you run against the last eight years, you run against signing statements, illegal wiretaps, Gonazalez, you run against torture (the one time where you acknowledge and agree with him--and promise you'll put him in charge of that problem when you win); you run gainst the dismantling of the EPA and the need to rebuild and undo the damage they've done; you pound the hell out of every single thing any Bush admin has done in 8 years: you promise to sweep them out of the Justice Department, you promise Congressional investigations; you categorically oppose any and all signing statements and vow to never use them, you repeal every one Bush signed; you promise to FINALLY rebuild New Orleans; you bring up FEMA at every opportunity and promise to rebuild it; you promise to do something with all those rotting trailers (even if it is just burn them); you kiss every Latino butt you come across, you promise to tear down the 700-mile wall BUT you also promise to reform ICE so that proper citizenship becomes reasonable and not the Bushian nightmare it is now; you promise to listen to our Allies; you promise to send MORE troops to Afghanistan; you promise to send Biden to the Middle East and Iraq and give him carte blanche; you promise to root out every single Neo-Con who ever walked out the State dept. and Pentagon/defense dept.; you repeal the Bush tax cuts and roll back anything else that faintly smells of Bushism; you demonize Dick Cheney seven times a day.

That's how you beat McCain: you run against Bush and you run against Republicanism and Conservatives. You ignore the actual McCain. If his runningmate is Huckleberry, you annihiliate him by constantly reminding the country that if McCain, 72, dies in office, we are in dip ----.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 7, 2008 4:05 PM | Report abuse

firsttimeblogger - If you have access to the Internet through port 80 (you can get web pages) then it is probably NOT your network card.

But I have seen stranger things.

Posted by: DLD | February 7, 2008 4:07 PM | Report abuse

I dunno about November. Resignations from Congress and the Senate seats up for voting indicate there'll be more Democrats next year. On the Presidential side, McCain seems to have gone at least a year without saying any dirty words on camera, so he should be OK for the rest of the campaign. Wonder if he could recruit Bloomberg for VP.

Depending on who gets the Democratic nomination, I suspect the campaign will be all about security, abandoning our Iraqi friends, abandoning our troops just when they're near victory, and just maybe about abandoning America's wonderful doctors to lives servitude to the gubbmint.

Posted by: Dave of the Coonties | February 7, 2008 4:11 PM | Report abuse

If Clinton wins the nomination, she faces McCain/Obama.
And she wakes up screaming in a cold sweat.

Posted by: Wilbrod | February 7, 2008 4:19 PM | Report abuse

McCain/Obama - I LIKE it!

Posted by: DLD | February 7, 2008 4:22 PM | Report abuse

I took that quiz earlier and picked the laconic/iconic/bionic line.

We have two breaking MoDo stories today. A black journalist claims that Maureen Dowd mistook her for Michelle Obama at a campaign function. The story has since been withdrawn.

Also, a paragraph in yesterday's column about Barack Obama's smoking habit and weight loss was edited out of the final edition.

Let's just say the level of blogosphere umbrage over both stories is enormous.

Posted by: Mo MoDo | February 7, 2008 4:24 PM | Report abuse

The average NET income of M.D.'s in the U.S. is $203,000. Not bad for a "life of servitude."

Posted by: crc | February 7, 2008 4:24 PM | Report abuse

Dave, the campaign will be about what the two candidates say it is. The Dems would be fools to let McCain make it about defense/Iraq. They'd be fools to let Bush off the hook.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 7, 2008 4:25 PM | Report abuse

Both Obama and McCain favor keeping private health insurance and doctors wouldn't be on government salaries, Dave.

I'm actually studying those platforms carefully for my blog-- already spent too many hours trying to pore through that stuff. I'll say this: Clinton needs better writing staff or an editor for her website, her platform has the worst writing I've seen.

She should hire you, Mudge. Really. I mean, "Disincentives to work?" For some people getting up early is an disincentive to go to work.

The problem spoken about is actually a serious catch-22 of having to keep benefits that enable the person to function and work, or to go work and lose the benefits and then be unable to work.

It's taking me forever because I'm trying to get it all linked, and proofreading material with embedded links isn't my favorite thing.

Posted by: Wilbrod | February 7, 2008 4:27 PM | Report abuse

I know, Wilbrod. She speaks Wonk. She has to stop it.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 7, 2008 4:30 PM | Report abuse

I've already see a mock-up of a McCain/Lieberman bumpersticker.

Posted by: yellojkt | February 7, 2008 4:31 PM | Report abuse

DLD: //2. If the above doesn't do it: When it is convenient, turn off everything that is on the network; cable modem, routers, computers, hubs, switches, printers, scanners, whatever. Leave them off for AT LEAST 1 hour. Better still, overnight.//

Because a good night's rest never hurt anybody. :-)

Posted by: dbG | February 7, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse

SecDef Frosti. Nice ring.

I was selfishly hoping for a Huckabee presidency. You guys could come up here for a four year sleepover. S'mores and fine brandy. What fun!

Posted by: Boko999 | February 7, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse

To you snortworthy Boodle orators, thanks.

k-guy, I think I've Boodled the idea that Danny would name himself Head Coach sooner or later.

I expect he'll have a couple of hi-rise all-terrain Segways built for his duties on the practice field. In burgundy and gold, of course.

Straying back on-topic for a sec, I'm imagining McCain doing a little victory dance in his hotel suite bathroom this afternoon.

Maybe on the cell phone with Huckabee, saying, "It *worked*!"

I think it's *way* too early for any of the candidates to start talking possible VP or cabinet slots.

Need to go to the Conventions and hear what deals are on the table first, I would think. No need to hurry.

Also, exactly where does one sit to be in the GOP power position? [I'm tempted to ask if it's made of porcelain and if the Position one assumes allows phone books to raise one's heels for Maximum Firepower...]

bc

bc

Posted by: bc | February 7, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse

TBG, thanks for the insight about everyone being registered independent in Virginia. I saw the same thing over on the Marc Fisher chat, but had to run off to meetings before I could correct myself. It was so long ago that I registered to vote, that I could have *sworn* it was so, but alas. Anyway, my statement on voting to squash the Huckster still stands. If too many think McCain has it sewn up and stay home, he still might have a chance.

Posted by: Raysmom | February 7, 2008 4:42 PM | Report abuse

I too missed the first one on the art quiz. Ah well, back to the Hirshorn for a refresher! Yeah, I would not be at all surprised if McCain chose Lieberman as veep. And I would not be surprised if Lieberman decided to take it and change party affiliation.

Posted by: ebtnut | February 7, 2008 4:49 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, DLD. It's been very strange. I finally got one of my domain email addresses to work, but not the other one. And, of course, it has *exactly* the same user name/pw re: Comcast, and, yet, the server won't recognize it.

Well, tonight I'm going out to dinner w/ my nephew and niece-in-law for what is likely to be my last chance to see them -- at all -- for perhaps a few years. They're going to be in Australia for abt 3 months and then they're moving to the other Washington (Seattle). All for work for him (and, indeed, play). I'll really miss them. Good, good people.

I'll try shutting everything off tonight and unplugging the Comcast box. And then sigh into it again in the morning.

Thanks for the virtual shoulders.

Posted by: firsttimeblogger | February 7, 2008 5:11 PM | Report abuse

Mit Romney's lunge for Ronald Reagan's conservative mantle today was an obvious attempt to replicate Barack Obama's acceptance last week of the Kennedy torch.

Whether the former Massachusetts governor's speech to the Conservative Political Action Conference makes him the lamplighter in the Gipper's Shining City on a Hill will be up to the GOP. But Romney's rhetoric in his (sort of) announcement that he was suspending his campaign, when illuminated itself, reveals the case study in political pandering that it was.

Romney's words were predictably soaring as he envisioned his Utopia, yet any practical plan for how to get there was, just as predictably, not part of his daydream.

Romney mourned the death of the traditional American family, even finding it necessary to rattle off the percentages of children born out of wedlock by race. Every child should grow up with a father in the home, he declared. Duh! Hard to argue with that. But what, exactly, is the President's role in keeping America's millions of fathers at home with the wife and kids? Romney didn't say. Of course Romney, the privileged child of a well-to-do, stable family, knows all about the challenges of poor and middle-class families, right?

Uh, right.

Fathers should always be in the home, even if they're abusive, addicted, uninvolved. The physical and emotional trauma of the family is all worth it, a small price to pay for a "return to true American family values." The Beav' is bruised and Daddy is drunk, but that's OK! We're together!

Ah, but then there was the Mit-picker's assessment of the real threat looming over America like a company of gay French paratroopers - the potential for a Democratic Administration. In fact, Romney had the unmitigated gall to blame the current overuse of our military on the defense spending of the last Democratic administration. Defending the Bush Administration's unrelenting ineptness in Iraq is one thing. Blaming the debacle on Bill Clinton would be comical if nearly 4,000 members of the U.S. military hadn't already died since the beginning of the Iraq war in March 2003.

And of course, Romney pulled out the Bush/Cheney war misdirection play by suggesting a Democratic president would surrender to fanaticism by pulling out of Iraq and letting that country become a launch point for certain terrorist attacks on the U.S. Of course, Mit didn't mention that it is the American occupation that has turned Iraq - which was not a threat before the invasion - into a terrorist hotbed.

But that's OK. Reagan's light is bright, and Romney's got to hope it blinds us to the truth.

Posted by: Progressive-Compulsive | February 7, 2008 5:20 PM | Report abuse

Clinton needs an editor? I woulda thought she'd have access to the best.

Mudge, McCain might resist doing a typical campaign, but others might do it for him. The late Lee Atwater remains the role model for running an effective campaign. Anything for this year will have to avoid being crudely racist, so that's why I guess healthcare and "Our Troops Are Winning" will be big. I can't figure out how to attack Democrats on the economy. Taxes don't seem such a big deal.

Atwater's ghost might portray Obama as a denizen of rotting, murderous, druggy, corrupt Chicago. Would Clinton's New York be a nest of hedge fund managers whose financial manipulations are bringing the US economy crashing down?

Anyhow, the Economist's new cover portrays McCain as a chipmunk-cheeked Superman flying free of a comic-book map of the US. It's his big week.

Posted by: Dave of the Coonties | February 7, 2008 5:29 PM | Report abuse

100% on the the Pan/Homo(Hey, we're all apes here) quiz. If the paint covered the whole canvas it was done by a Homo Sapien.
Humans can't leave well enough alone.

Posted by: Boko999 | February 7, 2008 5:52 PM | Report abuse

Boko, my SIL says every good painting takes two people...one to do the painting, the other to tell them when to stop.

Posted by: LostInThought | February 7, 2008 5:55 PM | Report abuse

I agree with the people that say McCain is the only giving the hard truth about the length and depth of our commitment to Iraq. No Democrat is going to "lose" Iraq. They just don't admit to it or do some rather unconvincing hand waving about redeploying troops to adjacent countries. Lets face it. We have incurred the Mother of All Pottery Barns.

Posted by: yellojkt | February 7, 2008 6:10 PM | Report abuse

Well. A big fat zero on the art quiz. Since I've never totally failed a quiz of any kind (even if I had no knowledge, I had least at some lucky guesses!), I was very amused. Guess I just like my pitchers to look like sumptin.

I'm thrilled Romney's history and I don't really care why, but are there any other democrats out there who are sick and tired as being portrayed as traitors and cowards? I mean, I got the impression from his "I'm outta here" speech that if the dems (horrors!) win in November, we'll be wavin' the ole white flag and Al Queda will be takin' over the world. Really, are there any reasonable people, no matter their political affiliation, who honestly believe that guff? Just give it up already.

A serious question (mudge, bc, anyone?)- if, as recent polls suggest, about 2/3 of the country thinks we ought to get the heck out of Iraq, how can McCain run on keeping us there? I mean, 2/3 suggests that some of those people must be republicans and/or independents. Is it his belief he can sway some of the doubters to his way of thinking? (Well, of course, he does.) What do you think is the best way the dem candidate can keep them in the "get out" column?

Mudge, I totally agree with you about pounding the living daylights out of the past 7-8 years of Bush incompetence; however, maybe we shouldn't ignore McCain (it's rude) but just terribly, terribly politely explain how wrong he is.

Posted by: TLF | February 7, 2008 6:33 PM | Report abuse

I am a bob taft republican and i would only vote for Mcain at GUNPOINT

Posted by: Bob Peck | February 7, 2008 6:37 PM | Report abuse

I'm sure the Man in Joel's basement would be extremely disturbed about the current state of affairs. Everything about the foreign policy of the current administration is antithetical to his record and ethics. And HE was a man who knew all about the not-so-fun side of war.

I think I have the perfect job for Arbusto, starting 1/21/09: field supervisor for the Peace Corp. In Iraq.

Posted by: Slyness | February 7, 2008 6:58 PM | Report abuse

I say someone limited that gorilla's access to certain paint colors on one painting! No fair! I missed one.

Curmudgeon, that was brilliant.

"These proceedings are closed" is a fascinating Google search term.

One thing certain people are harping on uselessly, or almost uselessly, is being "against the war." I was against the war. Most people here were against the war. But I don't have a flipping time machine to go back and stop Bush. Now, if your idea is to just leave immediately, now, in the middle of the night if necessary, okay, it's a valid stance. I don't KNOW if that's the right thing. If it stops one more "unintentional but regrettably necessary" civilian child casualty, then I am tempted to agree. I give some credence to the "since we broke it we bought it" theory, but I don't know what if anything is salvageable. I think one of the horrid, rotten things Bush has done is put us exactly where we are. And he and Cheney ought to be in Spandau prison right now. And I'm old enough to remember the "light at the end of the tunnel" and the final helicopters pushed off the carriers. And I know that one day, things will be better. I also know that does not excuse Bush and every single one of those politician creeps who did this. May they all rot in (spandau prison)

All I know for sure is, we ain't got no time machines.

Posted by: Jumper | February 7, 2008 7:15 PM | Report abuse

I posted a blog entry analyzing disability rights and the political candidates' position, with two extra for specific asides.

Wading into the Ocean of Wonk is a very dangerous and tiring experience, you know, especially when you do it for hours upon end. (No, I don't have the guts for Mudge's job and I know it.).

http://wilbrodthegnome.blogspot.com/

I'm now offically ALL politicked out for the next year.

Posted by: Wilbrod | February 7, 2008 7:29 PM | Report abuse

K-guy and Mudge, great imaginary speeches, if only he woulda used one of 'em. Good points about the war Jumper. I remember saying to "S" when the talk of war took off that fall, 'quagmire, anyone?" I wish I hadn't been right. I also remember the watching that helicopter take off from the embassy in Saigon and feeling very ashamed for my country. Our politicians seem to talk endlessly about their 'love' for the country but in practice, much of what they espouse seems to cause more damage to it. Seems like a strange definition of love.

Great kits and boodles the last two days, sorry I've been unable to contribute. We had a power failure here last night for two hours so we started planning our summer vacation by candlelight.

I assume the Mittsters boys are glad he won't be spending any more of their inheritance on running for president. Who would have thought that the two remaining repubs would be McCain and Huckleberry? Slyness, I like your idea for the next job for W.

Posted by: Bad Sneakers | February 7, 2008 7:44 PM | Report abuse

Thank you, Mr. Peck. 'Preciate it. I hope you and many other Republicans carry that attitude all the way through November. By all means, sit on your hands and do nothing. Many, many of us here on the Boodle will thank you.

TLF asks, "how can McCain run on keeping us there?" Answer: he can't. He'll try, of course, and let him.

The first thing to remember about Iraq is that there's a little more than eight months between now and the election, and quite a lot can happen, so it would do well to have some patience and see what happens. The thing is, Democrats don't have to solve the Iraq problem *now* -- they only have to solve it as it will appear late next January, when they take office. The upshot of this is, the war is going to be one year older by then, and unless it is *very* much improved, America is going to be all that much more sick of it.

But let's assume the Surge "works," more or less within parameters, and things do indeed get better. No problem: keep things pretty much in place, let progress continue, give the Iraqs a *generous* deadline -- maybe all of 2009 -- to take over as we withdraw. If things are going well, why not? We'd be silly to interfere with a plan that is "finally" going well.

Of course, I think there's less than a 5% chance of this scenario happening, but that's not the point; the point is contingency planning and how to handle Iraq is things start to improve.

And if things either (a) go to he11, or (b) stay roughly the same, then the answer is simple: give the Iraqis six months to clean up their act, and if they don't, just pull out. Remember, that'd be 18-months from now; if it hasn't gone well, no rational person will begrudge us the pullout, except a small percentage of the die-hard Bushies, and you know what they can do with themselves.

In other words, played (framed) properly, Iraq isn't a lose/lose proposition for the Dems; it has slowly evolved over time into a win/win. Bush has 11 more months to "win" over there. Let him do what he wants, and keep track of the body count. On Jan. 20, 2009, that body count is the Dem's best weapon.

If the war goes badly, the Dems "win" ("we told you so, so get out NOW!"). If the war goes well, the Dems win by endorsing its continuance and limited support. And at the first sign of trouble or a reversal--well, that's all you need to say enough's enough: not a cassus belli but a cassus pacem.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 7, 2008 7:45 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, Mudge, for putting into words what I could not.

Posted by: TLF | February 7, 2008 7:54 PM | Report abuse

"That's going wide and ceding the rail,but McCain found good footing."

Hmmm. . . . Sounds like Mr. Achenbach has been to a race track or two in his lifetime.

Posted by: breth | February 7, 2008 8:02 PM | Report abuse

I still don't understand why McCain gives a crap what the true conservatives think of him. Does he think they'll vote for Clinton or Obama instead?

I guess he's afraid they'll just stay home. Well, I guess the same group who elected GWB twice is just stupid enough to stay home.

Kind of like all those Iraqis who "boycotted" their election and then were all pissed off because they had no representation.

Posted by: TBG | February 7, 2008 8:02 PM | Report abuse

Mudge, love your four something comment. And I'm not voting for anyone that has an eye to sending my grandsons off to Iraq to be killed. I'm not against the military. We need them for defense, but just to carry out someone's whim, no thank you.

I've been meaning to ask them for some time, but just hadn't gotten around to it. Is conservative one of those code words for hating African-Americans or something to describe racist feelings? You know like a clannish thing? I keep hearing over the news that McCain isn't conservative enough, and that the Republican base hates him. And that if they have to vote for him, they will do as some Dems are talking about doing with Hillary Clinton. You know holding the nose thing. Is that what McCain is facing? I mean most of the racists left the Dems party and went to the Republicans, so is this the people we're talking about that are referred to as the base in the party? The really conservative bunch? Just asking.

Posted by: cassandra s | February 7, 2008 8:04 PM | Report abuse

Here's the other thing I would do. The Dem convention is August 25-28; that means we'll likely know who the nominee is on or about Aug. 26. (Assuming nothing happens between now and then to resolve the question, i.e., one or the other conceding.) No matter which one wins, the very next morning I'd call in Joe Biden and say, "You are going to be the very next Secretary of State, and I'm going to announce it this afternoon. Starting in 20 minutes, you are in charge of our overall Iraq strategy. You have between now and noon, Jan. 20, to come up with an analysis of the situation as well as a plan. It will probably be the partition plan you've been advocating for quite a while. Go to Iraq as much and as often as you need to; talk to whoever you need; hire whoever you need; put together your team. Let us make the assumption that you are starting work right now; we're not gonna wait until November to "ratify" my presidency and your stewardship of this project, and we're *certainly* not gonna wait until Jan. 20 to go to work. We start now, today."

Pre-empt the GOP. Pre-empt, pre-empt, pre-empt.

Nobody's ever done it this way; it's time someone did.

(Not that it matters, and not that anyone wants me to, but I can "justify" a lot of this theory by quoting major chunks of Tom Peters, mainly from "A Passion for Excellence." His major point: don't wait to start work; do it now. Make a major change now. Do something different now. Doesn't matter what; just do it. Be seen to be doing it." In this case, be seen to be presidential starting on the morning of August 26. Don't wait to be elected; don't wait to show people you know how to do the job; start actually doing it. Pick and name your cabinet; nobody's ever done that. If you pick well, those people become surrogate candidates for you in those new roles. That gives you 2 1/2 months between Aug. 26 and Nov. 4 to start running a shadow government. Lots of presidents have "talked" about "hitting the ground running" on Day One, but not one has actually done it.

If the winner is Obama, then this gives him 2 1/2 m onths to show the general electorate he knows how to run the govt. and be a president. If the winner is Hillary, it gives her 2 1/2 months to show the electrorate where and how she's gonna contain Bill and keep him out of the way and meanwhile show her executive and leadership abilities. If she can show the country she can lead and govern *without* Bill sticking his nose in, the will defuse the major rap against here.

If either of them can't meet this challenge, well, then that person probably doesn't deserve to be president.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 7, 2008 8:07 PM | Report abuse

Let them learn on their own TBG.

Posted by: shrieking denizen | February 7, 2008 8:08 PM | Report abuse

"I still don't understand why McCain gives a crap what the true conservatives think of him. Does he think they'll vote for Clinton or Obama instead?"

According to what I've read the True Conservtive RightWingnuts hope McCain loses so they can reclaim the party.

Posted by: Boko999 | February 7, 2008 8:11 PM | Report abuse

Anther fun piece of political commentary brought to you by web comic Married to the Sea...

http://www.marriedtothesea.com/020708/food-and-drug-administration.gif

Posted by: TBG | February 7, 2008 8:13 PM | Report abuse

Oh, can someone explain about the trade deal for Shaq and the Suns? Do they need him, and more importantly, can he deliver?

Posted by: cassandra s | February 7, 2008 8:13 PM | Report abuse

Jeez that wasn't vey clear.
The Coulters, Dobsons and Limbaughs hope McCain loses the general election so their ilk can pick up the pieces of the Republican party.

Posted by: Boko999 | February 7, 2008 8:15 PM | Report abuse

Mudge... my dad always said, "Do something... even if it's wrong."

Posted by: TBG | February 7, 2008 8:18 PM | Report abuse

Would there be anyone appointed to look into what's been going on for the last eight years. I really believe we just might have some surprises there that many are not aware of. And after finding out what that is, what's to be done about it. Do we ignore it and move on or do we take action?

Posted by: cassandra s | February 7, 2008 8:24 PM | Report abuse

Cassandra, I don't follow sports but my thought when I heard about O'Neal's being traded to Phoenix was that he wasn't just a member of the Heat basketball team; he was really a member of the community, a literally larger-than-life celebrity in Miami, so he'll be missed.

Herald sportswriter Greg Cote thinks it was a very good trade for the Miami team and the Suns got the worst of it:

http://www.miamiherald.com/611/story/409630.html

Shaq was his usual irrepressible self at the news conference:

http://www.miamiherald.com/859/story/410895.html

Posted by: kbertocci | February 7, 2008 8:27 PM | Report abuse

cassandra, that's a really good question. as conservatives see it, as in the romney campaign, there are different categories of conservativism - social (anti-abortion, anti-gay marriage, etc), economic (laissez faire, anti big government and many forms of government "intervention"), and security issues (generally hawkish on foreign policy, rule of law on immigration).

where does race fit in? i think it fits by defining social/moral issues narrowly and ignoring larger socio-economic justice issues. it fits in with this arrogant us versus them approach to foreign policy and security. as for the role of the government, that is one of the classic issues between liberals and conservatives. philosophically, there is an emphasis on personal responsibility and initiative over institutional racism (this is where conservative blacks criticizing affirmative action comes in) and ignore the historical factors that work against people of color.

so there are a lot of factors and opposing viewpoints. i'm left of center but not too far, so i see a need to balance a lot of these factors, such as personal responsibility and social or government responsibility.

Posted by: L.A. lurker | February 7, 2008 8:30 PM | Report abuse

kbert, the man looks good in purple, I have to agree. Of course, I like Shaq anyway. Doesn't matter who he plays for in my book.

I saw a reporter running beside Shaq one time when Shaq was really upset, and the reporter was trying to ask him some questions, and Shaq turned around and said to the reporter get out of my face. If I remember correctly, the reporter stop moving. I would have too.

Posted by: cassandra s | February 7, 2008 8:34 PM | Report abuse

scc - the last sentence of the 2nd paragraph is grammatically incorrect.

oh well.

Posted by: L.A. lurker | February 7, 2008 8:40 PM | Report abuse

Hmmm... wonder how this will affect the election?

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/02/07/AR2008020700674.html

Posted by: TBG | February 7, 2008 8:42 PM | Report abuse

thanks, kbert for your answer

lurker

thank you for your response to my question. it does clear it up some. not all the way because i do think the issue of race is a key factor in the use of that word. and yes, african-americans, some are against affirmative action because they see it as defining them by race. my take on affirmative actions has always been it just opens doors that were once closed, and thereby offering opportunity. the opportunity to excel and do well. for me, it's not doing the work, just offering the opportunity, a chance to experience something that was not possible at some point of time. i could be wrong, but i think "conservative" is one of those coded words that define a group of people and their values as oppose to the whole. it would take a strong and truthful person to admit such a bias, but perhaps there is one out there somewhere.

Posted by: cassandra s | February 7, 2008 8:43 PM | Report abuse

Oooohhh... I just got polled!

By a company called Action Research. The caller did not know who had commissioned the poll ("We're not told so that we're not biased.") Three questions...

1. Are you registered to vote? (yes)

2. Which party do you align yourself most closely with: Rep, Dem or Ind? (Dem)

3. How likely are you to vote in the Republican primary on Feb 12: Very likely, likely, not very likely or not at all likely? (not very likely)

"Thank you... that's all!"

Posted by: TBG | February 7, 2008 8:48 PM | Report abuse

TBG, the one time I was polled by politicos they slammed the phone on me when I said I was over 26 years old. This was a poll intended for the young ones, obviously.

Posted by: shrieking denizen | February 7, 2008 8:56 PM | Report abuse

if we withdrew from iraq and the whole place disintegrates into a bigger mess, we would still be blamed, and rightly so. we started this mess.

one thing i've noticed is this assumption that everyone wants to end the iraq war and everyone supports a rapid withdrawal. while that may be true on the anti-war left, that is not really true overall. the majority opinion is angry over the war and would like to get out, but a lot of people are pretty concerned about the aftermath. the democratic candidate damn well better have a responsible withdrawal plan. here clinton is better than obama, imo, although i assume obama would tack to the center in a general election.

and the surge is working moderately well. it may not ultimately work, but it is working enough so that if democrats use the same rhetoric of 2006, it will backfire among independents and centrists.

Posted by: L.A. lurker | February 7, 2008 8:57 PM | Report abuse

Well... since I didn't rule it out completely, I wonder if they were just trying to find out who was going to vote in the Repub primary... how many "crossover" voters.


Posted by: TBG | February 7, 2008 8:59 PM | Report abuse

Shaq is good for the Suns if he can stay healthy. They play in the harder part of the NBA, the Western conference, with Dallas and San Antonio and Houston and the Suns need a large obstacle to play defense against the likes of Tim Duncan and Yao Ming. Although he does not fit the Suns' style of play-fastfastfast-Shaq may still help them into and through the playoffs. He's very experienced and a smart player, but he's aging and injury prone and can't run like he could 10 years ago (who can?). It doesn't matter if he scores a lot or not if he blocks shots, rebounds, and clogs the middle, and he can still do all those things.

Posted by: kurosawaguy | February 7, 2008 9:00 PM | Report abuse

btw, excellent point, mudge, about the dems needing to run against bush and not against mccain.

Posted by: L.A. lurker | February 7, 2008 9:06 PM | Report abuse

TBG, if you had answered that third "poll" question in a positive fashion you would be receiving multiple recorded "get out the vote" messages over the next five days. Been there, done that, got the T-shirt.

A more subtle "poll" would not have asked about only one party's primary. These folks wanted to identify likely GOP voters.

Posted by: kurosawaguy | February 7, 2008 9:07 PM | Report abuse

There was just a discussion on Olbermann regarding some sort of ultimatum being delivered by Gov. Dean to Clinton and Obama come June if they are still more or less tied in delegate numbers. The assumption that McCain has a lock on the nomination and therefore has many more months to campaign means that the Dems would be at a terrible disadvantage if their candidate isn't chosen until the end of August. Dean would 'force' some sort of closed door meeting of Clinton and Obama to get one of them to back out or take the vp spot thus allowing the Dems to start the campaign before the convention.

I see the problem with having less real time to campaign assuming no choice is made until the convention, but I don't see either Obama or Clinton willingly taking the second spot. Gadzooks this whole thing is getting complicated. I may get my migraine back if I don't stop thinking about it all.

Posted by: Bad Sneakers | February 7, 2008 9:10 PM | Report abuse

Cassandra, it's not what you believe, it's how you believe it.

Conservatives generally want law and order, be tough on sin and criminals, and protect the country.

For them, often this is the main purpose of government and to add other things onto that just gets everybody in a mess.

They can believe in economic and social justice, too, but they may disagree on how to achieve that, or how hard to try.

I could believe the exact things that a given conservative belives, but I'd still pick different issues to base my vote on as being more important to me.

Does that make sense?

I'm anti-abortion for myself, but honestly indifferent to whether other people do it. I could live in America if it banned abortion or continued to support it.
I would be against specific rulings if I felt it had bad implications or precedents for future laws and personal liberties.

This is the major reason I lean pro-choice; I do not feel the legal reasoning in any effort to overturn Roe vs. Wade even in part is complete yet, and frankly, I'm not sure we have the system in place to handle the consequences.

There may be people who have similar reasoning about correcting social inequality through law-- there are no guarantees, it could create harm as well as good, etc.

Posted by: Wilbrod | February 7, 2008 9:14 PM | Report abuse

In a nutshell, conservatives value personal liberty over social equality, while liberals value social equality over personal liberty. Taken to the extreme, both can have noxious results.

Posted by: RD Padouk | February 7, 2008 9:17 PM | Report abuse

Of course, I should add that what I just described is textbook conservatism and liberalism. The reality is far, far more complex and often absurdly paradoxical.

Posted by: RD Padouk | February 7, 2008 9:25 PM | Report abuse

thanks, k-guy. I'm thinking that way too. He's a plus for the team regardless. I just like Shaq, so my opinion is not without bias.

I asked my dad today if he had made up his mind about who he's going to vote for, and he said, no. It is really difficult for some of us. I haven't made up my mind yet either. And there is so much talk about one thing or the other, it can give one a headache. I feel like after the last eight years, Obama or Clinton would be a leg up.

Posted by: cassandra s | February 7, 2008 9:25 PM | Report abuse

the thing that has always confused me about conservatism is that most of these folks are against abortion, but don't hesitate to fry someone in the chair. I mean isn't all of it killing? Okay, let's say you stop all abortions, and we have children everywhere, are conservatives willing to feed these children if parents don't? I don't get that warm and fuzzy feeling from most conservatives. Most of them profess to be staunch Christians, but don't really believe in Christian values outright. Christianity teaches loving God and loving your fellowman. Conservatives don't seem to embrace either doctrine. Conservatives profess to value families and family values, but many are working on a second or third wife, with children from the first marriage somewhere else completely. And this was brought out so clearly doing Bill Clinton's fiasco(?), they were saying one thing and doing another. And who can forget Newt Gingrich going to the hospital asking his sick wife for a divorce. I mean, pleaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaase, give me a break here!

Posted by: cassandra s | February 7, 2008 9:34 PM | Report abuse

Maybe in the early 20th century Padouk. Your modern conserative is an enemy of personal liberty.

Posted by: Boko999 | February 7, 2008 9:38 PM | Report abuse

Very well said Cassandra.

Posted by: dmd | February 7, 2008 9:39 PM | Report abuse

Missed your caveat RD.
There is something odd going on with my refresh function.

Posted by: Boko999 | February 7, 2008 9:40 PM | Report abuse

I agree with you there, Cassandra. Catholics are taught murder is wrong, whether babies or criminals. But then, wars may be just.

I just think a lot of them are exposed to very bad theology by preachers who never studied theology, just read the bible and didn't get past the Old Testament with all its wars and killings. Then they read about the Baby Jesus and it stops there in their head.


Posted by: Wilbrod | February 7, 2008 9:43 PM | Report abuse

>I feel like after the last eight years, Obama or Clinton would be a leg up.

i agree 100 percent.

cassandra, i think whether race is part of "conservative" may also have to do with another meaning the word has - preserving the status quo. if that status quo includes racial inequality, then being conservative includes an element of racism.

Posted by: L.A. lurker | February 7, 2008 9:47 PM | Report abuse

I have talked more than I intended, but just trying to figure things out for myself with the help of my friends. I don't have the answers. I will listen and make a decision about who I think can lead our country out of the mess we seem to be covered in. This is a great country, but we can do better. Somewhere along the line we forgot that we're a great country, and became afraid.

TBG is right, we have do something.

Good night, boodle. Sleep well, and sweet dreams. And thanks for enlightening an old woman living in rural America.

Posted by: cassandra s | February 7, 2008 9:49 PM | Report abuse

RD. It seems to me the problems start when the application of any theory, philosophy, theology, or idealogy ignores the effects that the application has on the people who have to live under it. Frequent reality checks are required. Oliver Wendal Holmes knew this with respect to the constitution and the law.

Posted by: Boko999 | February 7, 2008 9:52 PM | Report abuse

Boko999 - I agree enthusiastically. A political philosophy can sound just peachy on paper, but can be often end up with oppressive and absurd repercussions when put in practice.

Posted by: RD Padouk | February 7, 2008 10:12 PM | Report abuse

But can be? Sheesh. Goodnight all.

Posted by: RD Padouk | February 7, 2008 10:13 PM | Report abuse

But can be a good word, RD.

Posted by: Wilbrod | February 7, 2008 10:34 PM | Report abuse

Wow. Bush is going to endorse McCain. I'm sure *that* will get him a lot of votes.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 7, 2008 10:37 PM | Report abuse

I hope McCain makes Bush bend THIS time.

Posted by: Wilbrod | February 7, 2008 10:38 PM | Report abuse

Looks like one bastion is crumbling soon:

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080208/ap_on_re_us/oral_roberts_scandal


Posted by: Wilbrod | February 7, 2008 10:40 PM | Report abuse

I wonder how easy it is to edit Hillary Clinton. Or maybe her editor is letting her (Hillary's) voice come through. When I hear Obama, I wonder if he's writing his speeches. I like to think so, but maybe he has a good speechwriter.

Hillary is here tonight - Barack will be here tomorrow. I'd love to go see either one, but I'm on call, on my 12th hour of work today, it's windy and cold, I have to be at work tomorrow, etc. I did see Bill Clinton way back in 1992, and would have gone in 1996, but a friend talked me out of it.

ftb, your friends have the good sense not to move out here in Feb, like I did. Three months from now will be lovely, especially in contrast to dry Australia. If you come to visit them, we can have a Pacific NW BPH!

Posted by: mostlylurking | February 7, 2008 10:43 PM | Report abuse

I hate this:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/02/07/AR2008020703726.html?hpid=moreheadlines
Thank you, Second Amendment.

Posted by: mostlylurking | February 7, 2008 10:47 PM | Report abuse

Couple of quick items:

The Shaq/Marion trade makes no sense to me - not as a mid-season trade, anyway.
Phoenix is a run-and-shoot team; Shaq's 7 ft, 320 lb, and 36 years old with a *lot* of NBA miles on his bod. He isn't going to be able to run with the rest of them at this point, and will the rest of the team be able to completely change their games to accomodate Shaq while continuing to win? I don't think so. Shaq's a pretty fragile centerpiece to build around to begin with...

The Heat's season is pretty much a lost cause at this point, so Marion's arrival might help some, but I don't know if they'll even get into the playoffs.

Oh, the Daily Show's on, and they're talking Mitt Romney. Funny funny funny, IMO.

Almost as funny as Bush endorsing McCain.
I can see McCain waving his arms at the back of the room towards Bush at the podium, shaking his head side-to-side and mouthing the word, "no!"

bc

Posted by: bc | February 7, 2008 11:15 PM | Report abuse

Oh, but we all know guns don't kill people, BULLETS kill people.

Posted by: kurosawaguy | February 7, 2008 11:23 PM | Report abuse

Cassandra - I'm not sure that I feel competent to address your question about how closely "conservative" is tied to "racist". But I think that you're making an oversimplification when you wonder why "conservatives" are in favor of the death penalty, but against access to abortion.

I'm not sure that your assumption is correct that the vast majority of death penalty advocates are opposed to all abortions, and vice versa. But I certainly think that a distinction can be drawn between support for the execution of the guilty, and (what one may perceive as) murder of the innocent.

On strictly pragmatic grounds, I've come to stand strongly against the death penalty and in favor of relatively unfettered access to abortions. But those same pragmatic grounds have led me to champion much more aggressive sex education and anti-crime education programs than most "liberals" would find comfortable. [Let's not even bring the conservatives into this part of the discussion. Their heads might explode!]

Posted by: Bob S. | February 7, 2008 11:38 PM | Report abuse

Oh, goody, Huckabee's doing a walk-on on the Colbert Report just as Colbert started to talk about Romney's withdrawl.

bc

Posted by: bc | February 7, 2008 11:41 PM | Report abuse

Mostly, Obama is pretty good at speaking extratemporously due to teaching experience as well his experience in training volunteers on their rights.

A review from a student on his teaching style:

http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2007/12/20/12119/122/324/424784

I suspect that if Obama doesn't write ALL his speeches, he definitely writes some of them.
http://www.slate.com/id/2171610/fr/rss/

Hillary taught one year and went into corporate law, indicating she probably was on the whole more comfortable with paperwork than public speaking. I can't find evidence that she ever argued a case.
That would be pretty normal for a corporate lawyer, actually. They spend their lives making sure their companies AVOID court.

Posted by: Wilbrod | February 8, 2008 12:03 AM | Report abuse

Jason Jones is a Canadian. I'm so proud.
According to Mitt Romney the problem with America is there's not enough religion.
Right.

Posted by: Boko999 | February 8, 2008 12:19 AM | Report abuse

good editorial against the bush adminstration's use of torture. i still can't believe that this is our country we're talking about. if we don't follow the geneva conventions, how can we expect others to. madness. total madness.

Posted by: L.A. lurker | February 8, 2008 2:07 AM | Report abuse

Sloooow internet connection. Line gets dropped often. Well, that's live. Could be worse.

Thanks Mudge. Hello everyone, I'm back in M'sia for the lunar new year holiday. Major fireworks (bombs to me cuz they set off car alarms) going off till way pass midnight to usher the new year. The noise from the "bombs" are much worse than it is in Bn. Poor dogs. Poor cats. Poor me.

Daiwanlan ..."Gong Xi Fa Chai" "Xin Nian Kwai Lurk"

Posted by: rainforest | February 8, 2008 5:15 AM | Report abuse

'Morning, Boodle. Hey, rainforest, glad to see the Internet is back up in your part of the world. Happy New Year; sorry about the noise.

TBG, what your Dad said was right: do something, even if it turns out to be the wrong thing.

Yes, good editorial against torture, and good Eugene Robinson piece on the same subject. The cruelest, blackest-humor joke of all is that the "torture is OK depending on the circumstances" argument is the most flagrant examp[le of "situational ethics" imaginable, and this from a bunch of people who claim to abhor situational ethics. Well, one small silver lining in this dark cloud: no matter who wins the election, torture and waterboarding have come to and end. But what a national disgrace. Nice job, George.

C'mon, Scotty and Cassandra, lets get a move on. My office mates are coming in late this morning, so I'm gonna have to be the one to make the early coffee. (I usually do the second pot of the day, not the first. Ah, well. I'm flexible.)

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 8, 2008 6:18 AM | Report abuse

good morning, friends. hello, daiwalan, hope everything is fine with you.

bc, i've changed my views about abortion. i have never viewed it as an option for me, but felt i could not make that decision for others. there are some crimes that beg for the death penalty, but i'm not comfortable with that either.

perhaps my view is oversimplification, but sometimes a lot of talk hides some plain old truths. and that's not to say everything is simple, because we know there are layers, yet certain issues concerning race may have many layers but boiled down to the fact that someone is not comfortable with people of another race. just saying.

denial will never work, and it cannot hide. the only way to solve a problem is to admit there is one, and move forward. when we say racism doesn't exist, we lie big time. it is very much a part of our culture. we're getting better, but we have not won the war yet. and this goes for both sides. myself included. i'm trying hard, what about you?

the g-girl has announced this morning that she is going to the book fair. she is so excited. if we can just keep that excitement for a long time.

mudge, slyness, martooni, scotty, good morning early birds, and all. *waving*

have a great day, my friends.

Loomis, what's the word for the day?

God loves us so much more than we can imagine through Him that died for all, Jesus Christ.

Posted by: cassandra s | February 8, 2008 6:22 AM | Report abuse

Book fair! Oh, what happy memories! That was always a fun time in school, for my kids. The books were cheap and didn't last long, but they were fun to pick out and read.

G'morning Mudge and Cassandra. Great discussion last night while I was gone to the airport to pick up Mr. T. It's no longer PC to be racist, which is a good thing, but I think Cassandra's right that it's still part of the conservative ethos, at least here in the South, among a certain population of whites.

Posted by: Slyness | February 8, 2008 7:13 AM | Report abuse

Rainforest, how nice to see you.

Only Hillary advertss in my mail box. Waiting to see an Obama flyer. Surprised that Jack Johnson, county ex for PG county supports Hillary...

FIOS on board, so far so good.

Cassandra, just a comment on your questions about conservative, etc. I always have interesting company as a pro-life Democrat. Even more interesting company as a pro-life feminist. Did you know there is a group of gay and lesbian people for life? The are quite amazing people who deal with rejection and derision from both sides.

For the record, I have decided that legislative fiats on abortion access are fruitless. I do believe in trimming access at the edges.

I believe mostly in hoping that people will see the dignity of all people, especially the most vulnerable. I guess this would be a hearts and minds move.

I have also worked hard -- sometimes in a near-professional lobbying capacity -- against the death penalty for more than 20 years. Maryland is at a decision-point this spring about the death penalty.

People who hold views about the sanctity of life for the unborn and those on death row say that this approach forms a "seamless garment" about the dignity of all. This value also informs my position on no-torture, period.

Posted by: College Parkian | February 8, 2008 7:21 AM | Report abuse

Sorry, 'Mudge, been prepping for a "long" weekend with the new in-laws.

Fun! :-)

*off-to-the-airport-and-wishing-everyone-a-wonderful-weekend Grover waves*

Posted by: Scottynuke | February 8, 2008 8:31 AM | Report abuse

Good morning Boodle. Good morning Cassandra. Good morning Martooni. I heard there may be some waters in your area. Hope everything is OK for you and your family. CP, well said, well said. I am surprised there seemed no sympathy tears shed for Mitt's heroic withdrawal for the oncoming fight of presidency. Or, I myself am not surprised, after counting my fingers.

Posted by: daiwanlan | February 8, 2008 8:43 AM | Report abuse

Hey, you all, since this topic is about conservatives, I will start out by saying that Mike Huckabee is the only left handed conservative I see running in this race. McCain is also left handed, so maybe they should be running mates. They can share scissors, butter knives, things of that nature.

Switching now from writing about the only conservative to other left handed politicians.

Obama is left handed, but Hilary is right handed, so that's not going to work, brainwise, which is to say, right side (Obama) vs left side (Clinton).

Now....Bill Clinton is left handed, as is Ross Perot and GHW Bush. It was interesting for me to know this during their debates and it seemed to me that was about all they had in common at that time. Lately GHW & Bill have been together on occasion.

My dream team is Barak Obama/James Webb, unfortunately Webb is right handed and doesn't seem too interested in the VP slot.

Colin Powell, Einstein & Napoleon and a bunch of others is/was left handed.

This is light stuff when considering our president, but I'm left handed, so I think about it from time to time.

Posted by: VintageLady | February 8, 2008 8:48 AM | Report abuse

Rainforest,
So glad to hear from you. It is heartening to hear from my imaginary friends SHOUTING at me against all the background noise of firecrackers. Happy Lunar New Year to you all. In the circles of 12, the time fly by faster than I can catch an early retirement.

Posted by: daiwanlan | February 8, 2008 8:53 AM | Report abuse

VintageLady, I knew there was a reason I liked you immediately! I'm left-handed too. When I was working, the number of left-handed folks among the professional staff was much higher than in the general population. We never figured out what that meant, but we were a congenial group.

Obama's left-handed? He's my man, then!

Hey daiwanian and rainforest. Good to hear from you, and enjoy your holidays.

Posted by: Slyness | February 8, 2008 9:11 AM | Report abuse

I am another leftie!

Posted by: dmd | February 8, 2008 9:18 AM | Report abuse

Man, we're up to our keesters in southpaws.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 8, 2008 9:24 AM | Report abuse

Or were you talking politics, dmd?

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 8, 2008 9:26 AM | Report abuse

Cuz we got a fair number of them around here, too.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 8, 2008 9:27 AM | Report abuse

I'm a righty, but throw like a girl with my left. I'm so confused.

Posted by: omni | February 8, 2008 9:29 AM | Report abuse

Just saw this on the WaPo home page under News Columns and Blogs: "CP on America's Next Top Model." Something you'd like to tell us, darlin'?

Posted by: Raysmom | February 8, 2008 9:31 AM | Report abuse

I would definitely be on the left side of the political spectrum as well Mudge, although fiscally somewhat conservative (no deficit spending!).

Posted by: dmd | February 8, 2008 9:32 AM | Report abuse

Cassandra, I think you meant to address your abortion comment to Bob S...

VintageLady (hi!), Slyness, even though I am right-handed, I know the value of leftandedness. Without lefthandedness (via homochirality of L-form amino acids) life may not ever have arisen on this planet.

If there is a Creator, and we are in his/her image, then there's a good chance that the Creator is lefthanded...

bc

Posted by: bc | February 8, 2008 9:32 AM | Report abuse

bc, you are so right. see how forgetful, and how quick that forgetfulness is with old people. sorry.

my sister, bless her heart, was a lefty. the girl could read a paper upside down. i do miss her so. she lived in your fair city, slyness.

Posted by: cassandra s | February 8, 2008 9:41 AM | Report abuse

Hehehe. God may be left-handed? Hooboy, am I looking forward to checking Her out for that!

Posted by: Slyness | February 8, 2008 9:43 AM | Report abuse

When lefties and righties sit next to each other (in the correct manner), there's plenty of elbow room!

Posted by: TBG | February 8, 2008 9:47 AM | Report abuse

I take from your comments that your sister has left us, Cassandra. I'm sorry.

Okay, I skimmed what McCain had to say. I missed how he said he would balance the budget on top of making tax cuts permanent. Those of you who have federal experience, am I right in remembering that balancing the budget means that we make the interest payments on the national debt?

Posted by: Slyness | February 8, 2008 9:48 AM | Report abuse

"If there is a Creator... then there's a good chance that the Creator is lefthanded..."

And a woman... And black....

Man oh man, are they ever gonna have to re-do the roof of the Sistine Chapel. Talk about your designed-to-sell makeover.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 8, 2008 9:52 AM | Report abuse

Everything about the left is evil.
Wiki says: " Left-handedness, in comparison to the general population, also appears to occur more frequently in identical twins, and several groups of individuals with neurological disorders (such as people with epilepsy, Down's Syndrome, autism, mental retardation and dyslexia)"
Ite ergo: lefties are sinister commie retards.

Posted by: shrieking rightwingnut | February 8, 2008 9:54 AM | Report abuse

It's kinda late, but you all saw our own jw mentioned in Weingarten's chat on Tuesday, dintcha?

Posted by: TBG | February 8, 2008 9:55 AM | Report abuse

Uh, at least she's still Jewish, right? Yahweh and all that?

...oh, no...

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 8, 2008 9:56 AM | Report abuse

New Kit!

Posted by: shrieking denizen | February 8, 2008 9:56 AM | Report abuse

jw??

Posted by: Curmudgeon | February 8, 2008 9:57 AM | Report abuse

I just knew there were left handers in this boodle.... wonderful. Thanks, you all.

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