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The Next American Idol!!!

Sarah Palin raaawwwked. She killed. She's a natural, an instant star in a country where instant-stars are our most thriving domestic industry. I want to compare her performance to that of Ollie North in the Iran-Contra hearings -- remember Ollie-mania?? -- but I worry that that might be too obscure a reference for some younger readers. So let's just say she's the biggest thing to hit this country since Sanjaya Malakar!

For months the GOP has been accusing Barack Obama of being nothing more than a guy who gives a pretty speech. Well, if you can't beat 'em, join 'em. Think Obama's too much of a celebrity? After we finish making Sarah Palin a cosmic superstar, Obama by comparison is going to look like Alben Barkley! [You know the saying: A day without a bizarre reference to Alben Barkley is like a day without sunshine.]

Palin remains very much an unknown -- to McCain, among others -- but she showed herself ready for prime time. I get nervous talking to pre-schoolers at the elementary school; she went up in front of a national audience that didn't know her from Sara Lee and blew the roof off. I don't know how she could have done better.

The commentariat noted that she didn't write her own speech. But no one does. I doubt Biden wrote his, either -- and Palin gave a much better speech than Biden, in case you didn't notice. You say she actually was for the Bridge to Nowhere and now claims to have been against it? Don't get stuck on technicalities. Who among us can keep track of every unnecessary $200 million bridge we've supported over the years?

Reaction roundup:

Wonkette didn't cotton to Palin.

Times TV columnist is a bit sniffy too. Analyst says she did well, but....

Gloria Steinem: 'Palin shares nothing but a chromosome with Clinton. Her down-home, divisive and deceptive speech did nothing to cosmeticize a Republican convention that has more than twice as many male delegates as female, a presidential candidate who is owned and operated by the right wing and a platform that opposes pretty much everything Clinton's candidacy stood for -- and that Barack Obama's still does. To vote in protest for McCain/Palin would be like saying, "Somebody stole my shoes, so I'll amputate my legs." '

John Dickerson: "She had command, the same quality people attributed to Obama in 2004. Yes, she had speechwriters and she knows how to read a teleprompter. But there are plenty of politicians who've had great speeches and years of practice and still need lots of help. (One of them, actually, is Palin's running mate.)"


Meanwhile, Clinton aides say Palin's treatment has been sexist.


Priceless stuff from Roger Simon at Politico:

" On behalf of the media, I would like to say we are sorry.

On behalf of the elite media, I would like to say we are very sorry.

We have asked questions this week that we should never have asked.

We have asked pathetic questions like: Who is Sarah Palin? What is her record? Where does she stand on the issues? And is she is qualified to be a heartbeat away from the presidency?

We have asked mean questions like: How well did John McCain know her before he selected her? How well did his campaign vet her? And was she his first choice?

Bad questions. Bad media. Bad."


By the way, did you catch Mitt Romney? The two words he used most in his speech were "liberal" and "evil." Read it yourself.

This passage jumped out, because he stared into the camera and wagged his finger to punctuate the "radical violent Islam" point:

"Did you hear any Democrats talk last week about the threat from radical, violent Jihad? Republicans believe that there is good and evil in the world. Ronald Reagan called-out the Evil Empire. George Bush labeled the terror-sponsor states the Axis of Evil. And at Saddleback, after Barack Obama dodged and ducked every direct question, John McCain hit the nail on the head: radical violent Islam is evil, and he will defeat it!"

(The crowd stood up and chanted "USA! USA! USA!")

For the record, Obama did talk about terrorism but didn't use the word "Islam." Here's how he addressed the terrorism issue in his speech last week:

"...For while Senator McCain was turning his sights to Iraq just days after 9/11, I stood up and opposed this war, knowing that it would distract us from the real threats we face. When John McCain said we could just "muddle through" in Afghanistan, I argued for more resources and more troops to finish the fight against the terrorists who actually attacked us on 9/11, and made clear that we must take out Osama bin Laden and his lieutenants if we have them in our sights. John McCain likes to say that he'll follow bin Laden to the Gates of Hell - but he won't even go to the cave where he lives....

"...You don't defeat a terrorist network that operates in eighty countries by occupying Iraq. You don't protect Israel and deter Iran just by talking tough in Washington. You can't truly stand up for Georgia when you've strained our oldest alliances. If John McCain wants to follow George Bush with more tough talk and bad strategy, that is his choice - but it is not the change we need.

"We are the party of Roosevelt. We are the party of Kennedy. So don't tell me that Democrats won't defend this country. Don't tell me that Democrats won't keep us safe. The Bush-McCain foreign policy has squandered the legacy that generations of Americans -- Democrats and Republicans - have built, and we are here to restore that legacy.

"As Commander-in-Chief, I will never hesitate to defend this nation, but I will only send our troops into harm's way with a clear mission and a sacred commitment to give them the equipment they need in battle and the care and benefits they deserve when they come home.

"I will end this war in Iraq responsibly, and finish the fight against al Qaeda and the Taliban in Afghanistan. I will rebuild our military to meet future conflicts. But I will also renew the tough, direct diplomacy that can prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons and curb Russian aggression. I will build new partnerships to defeat the threats of the 21st century: terrorism and nuclear proliferation; poverty and genocide; climate change and disease. And I will restore our moral standing, so that America is once again that last, best hope for all who are called to the cause of freedom, who long for lives of peace, and who yearn for a better future."


James Fallows: "I can't recall any spectacle comparable to Baby Trig being passed from Cindy McCain, to Trig's 7-year-old sister, to Palin herself when she ended the speech."


Top story on Memeorandum this very moment is that Palin had to wing the speech when her Teleprompter broke. Great stuff. But ain't true.

By Joel Achenbach  |  September 4, 2008; 8:01 AM ET
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Palin Unleashed
Next: Climb Every Mountain


Sarah Palin gave McCain's Minnesota campaign a shot in the arm, too bad it was a lethal injection. (imagine Fred Thompson's staccato delivery)

Morning all.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 8:58 AM | Report abuse

Latest MN poll says the race that was nearly dead even going into the convention is now Obama 53% McCain 46%. I guess the speculation about T Paw getting the VP nod really was giving McCain some traction.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 9:02 AM | Report abuse

Good to hear the Boss's take on the Palin speech. Energize the base, that's what it's all about.

I saw a new McCain sign in the neighborhood on my walk. There have been a couple of Obama signs up since the May primary. My guess is that this county will go for Obama (it went for Kerry in 2004) but North Carolina is problematic. The Republican southern strategy is still operable in much of the state.

Oooh, Cassandra, I hope you folks get changes in the school system worked out. Things are still popping in the local system, but so far no show-stopping controversies.

Posted by: slyness | September 4, 2008 9:07 AM | Report abuse

Yahoo's assessment of Palin, "a star is born", and now, American Idol. Please, excuse me while I go throw up.

The election isn't over yet. We still have to vote. Let the race begin. We get to critique Palin too, so those that object, get ready. She flying with McCain, so all bets are off.

Posted by: cassandra s | September 4, 2008 9:17 AM | Report abuse

Da Boss made me laugh! That's an acomplishment for the AM hours.

Snuke, you sneaky birthdayer--Happy birthday to you.

Who is Palin?

I saw Melvin Koznowsky cross the street today.

Posted by: Brag | September 4, 2008 9:18 AM | Report abuse

Three years ago our small town was abandoned by a distant school board that joined a powerful teacher's union in protecting incompetent teachers and refused to update a 50 year old building. Our little town formed a nonprofit corporation that forced the school board to sell us the building and now runs a thriving community technology center and Boys and Girls Club after school program where the public school system couldn't find enough kids to fill a single classroom. We have 3 times more dues paying members than our fair city has voters. I am a community organizer and last night Rudy Giuliani laughed at me, and Sarah Palin sneered.

I woke with a start last night about 2:00AM and pictured all the other "ordinary people" who are community organizers who would make a great commercial for Obama. Let's see the 18 yo who assembles care packages for soldiers in Iraq look up from his work in the family garage to say "I am a community organizer" or the former loan officer turned foreclosure prevention activist delivering the news that she's managed to help a family save their home and turn to the camera "I'm a community organizer." Then a chorus at the end "We are responsible. Vote Obama"

Or something like that.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 9:20 AM | Report abuse

Alben Barkley. Jeez. I *remember* Alben Barkley, vaguely...which is pretty sad, if you ask me. Least ways, I remember when he died. I was in 3rd or 4th grade, I think.

I think I have been supremely derelict in not wishing a very happy birthday to Maggie O'D. Allow me to make amends. (I'd actually sing HB to you Maggie, but that wouldn't be doing you any favor, my tenor/basso profundo/falsetto and my tin ear being what they are.)

I think the very best thing about the entire Palin and GOP fiasco is that Obama and his people don't have to do anything at all about it: the GOP versus media slugfest is doing everything they could possibly want. They can stay aloof and on the high road, and let Jon Stewart and SNL take care of biz.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 4, 2008 9:23 AM | Report abuse

reposting from last Boodle...

*faxing a double dose of blood pressure medication to someone who sorely needs it*

Sometimes history is just history without any argument attached. I wasn't talking about marauding in general, but oil marauding. Crimeny!

Loved CP's last two sentences in her 8:14, although I feel a distance to them in the choice of the words "narrative" and "poetry." Spoken like someone with a deep, passionate involvement in things literary.

Palin's real, folks. And she appeals to me greatly. She played basketball, I played basketball. The beauty contest thing. Attended a small college. Journalism. Retail. The West--and the great outdoorsand athleticism. A son with Down syndrome. Her husband works for BP, my father stationed at a drilling operation at Cape Yakataga for Atlantic Richfield. Politics. Feel the urge to enroll in a correspondence course in how to field dress a moose.

Spunky. A pitbull with lipstick. I'm still watching and learning about her. I'd like someone to puzzle out, report more of the story about what happened at the Wasilla Library, though.

One thing I feel confident about. After the delivery of last night's (scripted) speech, she just upped the ante in the vice presidential debate. That'll be the television event to watch--Ifill, Palin and Biden. How good will she be in a more spontaneous setting in discussing issues not necessarily of her own choosing? Then again, we'll have a chance to see how much Biden knows about the energy industry--both domestic and foreign. How much does Palin know about energy activities outside The Last Frontier? Also, when will reporters have access to her?

Posted by: Loomis | September 4, 2008 9:25 AM | Report abuse

Can you say LANDSLIDE,
the media is so out
of touch with
the voters of america,
president is
a vote for a person.
a person we can
we can relate too.
All McCain needs
is the moderate
and conserative
and it will sweep
this talk of
blue and red states
back into nobama's

Posted by: usa3 | September 4, 2008 9:31 AM | Report abuse

A lot of the music at the RNC certainly supported the theme "country first." Some were definitely going for the scruff of the redneck vote, although Palin seemed to be yapping viciously, making chihuahua leaps for the throat of the effete eastern elite, while making pronouncements of Biblical proportion: the sun rises in the west, essentially challenging Aristarchus of Samos and Copernicus as merely theorists who ignored intelligent design. Her speech was certainly a setback for heliocentrism. I suppose we will be seeing a resurgence of flat-earthers in the days ahead, providing we are not the last days.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 4, 2008 9:32 AM | Report abuse

To vote in protest for McCain/Palin would be like saying, "Somebody stole my shoes, so I'll amputate my legs." '

My husband, who now has a big chunk of leg skin now grafted to his lower arm:
"Sometimes I'm really fighting the urge to put my shoe on my hand,"

Posted by: Loomis | September 4, 2008 9:34 AM | Report abuse

...providing we are not IN the last days.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 4, 2008 9:35 AM | Report abuse

That's great, frostbitten, and exactly what I was thinking, too.

When artists and street performers were threatened by powerful interests in Key West who wanted to get rid of the "riffraff" and build a cruiseport with federal community development grant money, I wrote up the articles of incorporation for a community organization. You haven't lived until you've "organized" street performers and artists--it makes herding cats look easy, believe me. But that organization prevailed. The cruiseport couldn't be stopped but we persuaded the city that we could all coexist, and negotiated limits on when the cruiseships could be in port in order to minimize the conflict with our World Famous Mallory Square Sunset Celebration. The celebration, and the organization (Key West Cultural Preservation Society) still endure. I've told this story before; forgive me: I don't have that many accomplishments, and this is one of my major ones. I am a community organizer. I am responsible. Vote Obama!

Posted by: kbertocci | September 4, 2008 9:35 AM | Report abuse

I just received a thank you e-mail and ppt slide show from a zip-code wide back to school celebration in our old Tampa neighborhood. 234 children received new backpacks, all the supplies on their schools' lists, and a great picnic with donated food. All set up by who? A community organizer.

Sorry, I'll be ranting about this for days.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 9:42 AM | Report abuse

KB! Huzzah! Under the huge tent of community organizing are these apple-pie activities:

Soccer coach (insert ANY SPORT)
sports reffing/ umpiring
PTA contributions
Girls Scouts/Boy Scouts, BlueBirds/ Four H/ Kiwanis Key Club/Kewanettes, ETC.
afterschool tutoring
Meals on Wheels
soup kitchens
battered women's shelters
pregnancy aid centers
local tree committees
Sierra club
NRA activity, especially at local levels.
high school boosters for sports, bands, chess club, Odyssey of the Mind, etc.
road adoption pick-up crews
Special Olympics support
bicycle path/walker path advocacy like Rails to Trails
Food for friends
therapy animals/therapeutic riding
literacy council tutoring
friends of libraries

WOW. Lots of community organizing that crosses all stripes of political convictions.

Posted by: College Parkian | September 4, 2008 9:43 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, all.

Much to do this AM, but wanted to drop in to wish Maggie a very Happy Birthday.


Posted by: bc | September 4, 2008 9:44 AM | Report abuse

kb-you raaawwwwk! But we already knew that. I had not read of your Key West organizing, and I'm in awe.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 9:45 AM | Report abuse

Loomis... please explain why "a pitbull with lipstick" isn't a sexist remark.

Why couldn't you just leave it at "pitbull"?

I only ask because you seem to be the resident expert on identifying sexisms when others make them.

Posted by: martooni | September 4, 2008 9:49 AM | Report abuse

I see that Gail Collins, in her op-ed today, also raises the question of the Wasilla librarian.

The main point of Collins' opining is how much better, newer and more refreshing Palin is than her old, tired, rundown white male counterparts, the Y-chromosome also-rans: Rudy and Mitt and Fred and Mike.

Posted by: Loomis | September 4, 2008 9:53 AM | Report abuse

They need to be careful about that lipstick line, it leads to easily into "Calling the Reps the party of small government, leave people alone, is like putting lipstick on a pig."

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 9:55 AM | Report abuse

I share, Frosti, your sense of personal affront at Palin's denigration of community organizers. My entire life's work has been community organization and development, from economic development of rural areas, to my role with the U.S. Senate in passing legislation that made hospice care a Medicare recognized service. Palin and McCain should also remember that political campaigns don't work without community organizers.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 4, 2008 9:55 AM | Report abuse

SCC: to=too

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 9:56 AM | Report abuse

Popping in from the land of sawdust, power tools and paint for just a few minutes.

Maggie, Happy Birthday. Your posts always either make me smile or teach me something (the Amelia Bedelia lesson of the importance of perspective comes to mind.) Sometimes both. I do hope it's a completely care-free day for you, one that includes plenty of laughter.

About last night. Palin doesn't seem to realize that she (and her daughter) are being set up as the reason for a loss. Equality has come a long way, baby...there are now such things as fallgals.

Not being catty, but paying attention...her demeanor won't play very well on the east coast..she has a certain "That 70s Show" mom twang to her voice, and she doesn't have the speaking cadence down yet. She has a well-maintained look about her (I know this look well...I strive to achieve it), yet somehow seems to have a dumpy aura about her (yeah, Joey Biden's won't stop any traffic, but no one has been touting his good looks as a qualification for office), and she has (forgive me) a Valerie Bertenelli look to her that says one more major disappointment and she'll be 250 pounds. Of course, I didn't get a good look at her shoes...

The tone of the evening starkly contrasts with those of last week....the focus was on the negative if they lose not the positive if they win. She didn't really have that much to say, and what she did say didn't seem to have a lot of coherence or cohesiveness to it.

I do hope her children come through this unscathed, but I don't have much hope that that will be the case.

Back to the sawdust. Have a happy day all.

Posted by: LostInThought | September 4, 2008 10:06 AM | Report abuse

What!!? What?!!! CP, are you implying that my 17 years as an umpire, 10 years on the LL board, 8 as chief umpire and chief umpire instructor, 5 years co-teaching (with my spouse) an adoption orientation class for about 500 prospective adopters (the majority of whom suffer from one of the various forms of medical infertility), working in the kitchen of my wife's church preparing Thanksgiving Day dinners for shut-ins and seniors, being an elected ward leader (back in Pennsyltucky) in a certain political party, and tutor of black kids in a Philly inner-city ghetto makes ME a... (simultaneous sneer and shudder) *community organizer*????

Why how dare you! I am umbraged! Outraged!

No, wait a minute, you're quite right. I am unworthy. Despicable. I abase myself before you. I am lower than pond scum. I see the error of my ways now.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 4, 2008 10:11 AM | Report abuse

I can admire Palin's accomplishments. I might recognize in her some of my own experiences. I can even wish her well in a "real-person" sort of way. However, everyting I've heard and read about her record and the speech she was willing to give (and apparently to endorse) indicates that she shares few of my goals or values, and her policy choices to promote her goals seem antithetical to mine. No matter how I feel about her personally a vote for her is not in my best interest. The personal may be political, but not in the personality-is-all sense. Voting in my interest doesn't always mean voting for the people with whom I personally identify. This isn't hard.

Posted by: Ivansmom | September 4, 2008 10:12 AM | Report abuse

Palin was referring to herself. However, I just can't explain why Alaskans like to apply lipstick to four legged animals...

Letter to the editor
Hey Juneau, right now, back in D.C., Sen. Lisa Murkowski is busy applying lipstick to a pig. To make matters worse, it's not even her pig. She inherited it from her daddy.

The Cape Fox stumps-for-wilderness land exchange - Senate Bill 1354 - is being debated in the Senate Resources Committee and any changes offered by Sen. Murkowski are purely cosmetic.

LL: Unless, it's a ploy to stimulate the economy?

Speaking of petroleum, many regular beauty products are made from oil. Like, uh, petroleum jelly, for one, and lipstick for another. Think about it -- you're putting oil on your lips! I attended an event to help protect the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge from drilling for oil (see more at the Sierra Club.) Senator Lisa Murkowski, from Alaska, was talking about how vital oil is. "Ladies," she said. "We need oil for our lipsticks!" We all groaned. ...

Posted by: Loomis | September 4, 2008 10:13 AM | Report abuse

It's always all about the shoes, isn't it? I'll have to pay closer attention. I was too busy looking for Bristol's baby bump and checking out the completely bored look on the face of hockey-dad-to-be. I'm sure that he now wishes he had just played PS3 with his buds that night instead.

Where are my manners? Happy birthday. Enjoy your celebration of another trip around the sun. You're getting better, not older.

Posted by: yellojkt | September 4, 2008 10:14 AM | Report abuse

Joel, you missed a typographical error in the second paragraph. There is no "s" in the word "comic."

Posted by: kurosawaguy | September 4, 2008 10:17 AM | Report abuse

Now I see that it worked with Mrs Palin, the "PIGS" that write and work for the POST and against this fine country hit the papers today marching to the Obama Band.

Posted by: Bob | September 4, 2008 10:19 AM | Report abuse


You came for Maggie's B-day party, right? We invoked your name with reverence the other day about

unreliable narrators in film and fiction.

You can tell us about this, should you not wish to join in the Palin-analysis.

Posted by: College Parkian | September 4, 2008 10:19 AM | Report abuse

This is drivel. Even referring to Obama as "the" American Idol is insulting to those talented young folks that have actually worked, honestly, at entertaining America. Obama is doing a good job entertaining, but the curtain has yet to open on him and as yet we've only been seeing the trailers, awaiting the full-length feature film.

Posted by: NJIndyVoter | September 4, 2008 10:20 AM | Report abuse

Hey K-guy! We've missed you! I hope you will talk to us about unreliable narrators.

Posted by: slyness | September 4, 2008 10:22 AM | Report abuse

Frosti, I LOVE that Obama commercial idea. I hope you try emailing it to his campaign. I too am a community organizer and proud of it.

I'll also put in a plug here for public service generally, whether for pay (like Obama's) or volunteer (like so many of us here). People of all political stripes who go into public service jobs are a breed apart. Even if you have political ambitions, even if your spouse supports your family, it is a sacrifice to give up the money and perks a professional degree can provide in order to choose public service. People who do it make that sacrifice willingly, and they don't deserve to be sneered at for their choice.

I think the McCain campaign just alienated a lot of people by not understanding what a real community organizer is and does. In fact, if Palin was that active in the PTA she was a community organizer herself. In her willingness to make fun of Obama and them bleeding-heart liberals she betrayed herself. Either she doesn't see that, or she doesn't care. I don't know which is sadder.

Posted by: Ivansmom | September 4, 2008 10:23 AM | Report abuse

Sorry, can't stay. I'm in deep, deep mourning over this-

Posted by: kurosawaguy | September 4, 2008 10:23 AM | Report abuse

Palinology: the hair -- part fly-away librarian, part "get that stuff off my neck." Hey, I resemble that on some days. What she is not sporting is the Republican bubble on so many docent types in the DC area.

LiT -- I see highlights in the hair. Will we have a hair-gate, as in the dresser reveals? Or does she use Clairol Nice and Easy Golden Brown and then the streaking cap?

Are we bad to talk about hair, shoes, clothes? Nah.....

Biden white, brush-backed locks look better now that when he was caught plagiarizing from a Brit labour party speech, say ten years ago.

Obama's close cropped hair suits him.

Posted by: College Parkian | September 4, 2008 10:26 AM | Report abuse

If you think public service is a noble calling, come to NJ and see how it works. Civil service, here at least, is the cesspool breeding-ground for a currupt and bankrupt government model that New Jersey has perfected. Kinda like Chicago/Illinois, only with triple- and quadruple-dip pension benefits.

Posted by: NJIndyVoter | September 4, 2008 10:28 AM | Report abuse

Kurosawaguy! happy day! we've missed you. As we say here in the heartland, don't be a stranger.

And happy birthday to Maggie O'D.

Posted by: Ivansmom | September 4, 2008 10:28 AM | Report abuse

Joel was once the most refreshing and original voice in the Post. You could ask him anything and get an answer that was more than anyone could expect. But that was then and this is now. Sigh.

Posted by: Gary E. Masters | September 4, 2008 10:32 AM | Report abuse

I loved Don LaFontaine's appearance on "Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me..." a while back. They asked him to give the Voice of God treatment to several NPR intros. The best was " From WHYY ... in Philadelphia ... This is Fresh Air! I'm Terry Gross." It was beautiful.

Posted by: StorytellerTim | September 4, 2008 10:32 AM | Report abuse

"the media is so out
of touch with
the voters of america,
president is
a vote for a person.
a person we can

USA3 you are the one out of touch. I guess you havent seen the polls where people actually care about the economy, the Iraq war, and healthcare, you just showed what we knew about the GOP is all about style and no substance. When are they going to start talking about fixing the mess their own party created the last 7 1/2 years? Oh thats right there plan is more of the same...

Posted by: American First | September 4, 2008 10:33 AM | Report abuse

WaPo had this nice tribute yesterday:

It's not the same if you don't read it out loud in The Voice.

Posted by: yellojkt | September 4, 2008 10:36 AM | Report abuse

My 81 yr. old neighbor says he can barely walk; the pain in his bad knees he says is so bad he wants to die sometimes. He barely scraped by as a music-book writer for Mel Bay, and teaching mandolin, plus banjo and guitar. So social security is not much help to him. He's too proud to beg anyone to help him, and I don't know who to call but I'm going to call someone. I'm going to corner someone from his church if I can and put that bug in their ear. We have split the lawnmowing for years, he had the riding mower and I put gas in it and serviced it and mowed his large yard and my small one. He's the one who told the police my neighbor's dog was "dangerous" but somehow didn't call me for help when the dogs got loose. But I don't feel like holding a grudge although I'm good at that. The lawnmower died, and today after the repair shop refused to deal with it, I will one more time try to put it together for at least one more mowing. After that, I don't know what's going to happen.

Posted by: Jumper | September 4, 2008 10:38 AM | Report abuse

NJIndyVoter: Double or triple dipping is not limited to NJ. What presidential candidate, for example, receives a military pension, a monthly social security check and a government salary?

Posted by: Anonymous | September 4, 2008 10:41 AM | Report abuse

A military pension, a monthly social security check and a government salary?

I see I mispent my youth. I could have been racking up money for now!

Posted by: dbG | September 4, 2008 10:48 AM | Report abuse

LiT, you made me laugh with the idea of Palin as a future Jenny Craig spokeswoman.

As I suspect Mike Huckabee may be, sooner rather than later.

I, too, noticed Ms. Palin's somewhat midwestern accent last night, and thought that it was unlikely to play well on the coasts.

As far a VP candidates go, I have hair issues with both sides - Biden's looks to me like a comb-over-and-back helmet (check how it squarely it terminates on the back of his neck), while I thought Palin's style last night was an unflattering middle-ground between a business-like pulled-back and piled up, and relaxed, hair down in the back. A modern femullet, if you will.

Having said that, I think Palin wins the VP hair debate.

Another good reason for me to stay out of politics - I don't have the hair for it.


Posted by: bc | September 4, 2008 10:51 AM | Report abuse

How does lunch sound today? Let's go to the beach.

I'll bring the puppy, now named "Bindi." I'm doing doggie-day care twice a week for about an hour each time, her mom says Bindi goes home so tired that she has trouble waking her hours later.

In volunteer lab rescue there's a saying: "A tired dog is a good dog." Is this community organizing? Nah, I guess it's just organizing a wag of labs.

Posted by: dbG | September 4, 2008 10:53 AM | Report abuse

Morning all
Another hot one here,off to fix my neighbors TV again.

LiT,good to see you and no i didn't check her shoes last night either.I hope you have a dust free zone in your home to protect all your shoes.

here is fine way to spend 10 minutes of your day.

Posted by: greenwithenvy | September 4, 2008 10:54 AM | Report abuse

If you're doing labrador retriever organizing, dbG, I think you're aiding and abetting the Canadian invasion. Better listen for the black helicopters.

Posted by: Ivansmom | September 4, 2008 10:54 AM | Report abuse

Wearing a silk Armani suicide bomber vest, Fashionable Hamzter ambled into the busy K Street lobby, where a crew of Space Hamzters labored stuffing hundred dollar bills into crates and bags.
"What are you doing?" he asked.
"We're gonna send a billion schmakos to the sak of shvili in Georgia."
"Stop, stop, stop. We have more urgent matters to attend."
"Like what?" Banker Hamzter asked.
"We shall be catering a fashionable moose barbeque for Washington's leading commentator who will host said elegant event," Fashionable Hamzter paused and made a sweeping gesture, "Mr. Achenbach!"
The Hamzter work crew tossed money into the air and danced the hoochie-woochie.
Epicurean Hamzter entered the Lobby. "You idiots, quit wasting Georgian money.
"Easy comes, easy goes." Banker Hamzter shrugged.
"Prepare the barbecue menu. This is important as Mr. Achenbach will be hosting the Palin babe and converting her from outsider to insider with outsider views, which are really insider views with an outsider slant."
Epicurian Hamzter began writing in a notepad. "For international flavor, we'll start with ravioli a la moosolini. Then we'll follow with moosaka. Then we'll toss the moose on the Barbie and drink murderita cocktails while the moose burns. We'll top the meal with baked Alaska."
"No!" Fashionable Hamzter objected. "Baking Alaska might be objectionable. We'll serve chocolate moose.

Meanwhile, on the other side of town, Melvin Koznowsky crossed the street.

Posted by: Brag | September 4, 2008 10:55 AM | Report abuse

Yep, Front Page Alert...

Posted by: Scottynuke | September 4, 2008 10:55 AM | Report abuse

Front page alert. Obviously.

I suppose I should get out more. I spent my career in the fire service. My greatest accomplishment is the siting of seventeen fire stations to provide emergency services as quickly as possible.

One thing about public service: It will get ahold of a person and never let go. There's just something meaningful about being part of the process to make people's lives safer and better.

Corruption is a culture that can be overcome. Doing that is also public service.

Posted by: slyness | September 4, 2008 10:57 AM | Report abuse

It occurs to me that our Frosty is a small-town mayor with a great deal of foreign policy experience, since she lives near Canada. And mostlylurking and Wilbrod live near there too. Wow. And LALurker could probably shoot on down to Tijuana in a couple hours! This is practically like a whole U.N. thing! And Yoki, DR, dmd and Boko are close, wait a minute. They already live in Canada. Hmm. Is it foreign policy experience if you're already a foreigner? Does that count, like, double?

I mean, hell, I've been to Cancun THREE times!!! Yes!!! I'm practically an effing ambassador, for god's sakes!!!

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 4, 2008 10:57 AM | Report abuse

Mudge, Mudge! Don't forget Dreamer and Rainforest! We are truly international.

Posted by: slyness | September 4, 2008 11:00 AM | Report abuse

Brag, I didn't much care for the way you treated women in your 10:55.

Watch it, buster.

Meanwhile, I think I'm gonna open the bunker. Oh, yeah. For real. This is not a drill. Slyness, how are we fixed on soda crackers, playing cards, flashlight batteries and water?

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 4, 2008 11:00 AM | Report abuse


Come on, did you really have to attack Alben Barkley that way? Poor, poor Alben. He does doesn't get any credit with the post-World War II generations... I know it's a shot at humor, but in his day, he was a very significant player with a widespread reputation for effective leadership. Okay, perhaps it was a while ago, but he was a key player during both the Great Depression and World War II... why couldn't you go after someone like William Wheeler, instead?

Posted by: Dale Crowell | September 4, 2008 11:04 AM | Report abuse

A little low on decks of cards, but the wine cellar is at full strength, Mudge. I think we'll be okay. Scotty and bc got a little happy playing 52 card pickup the last time we had to open up, and I just gave it up and threw them all away.

Posted by: slyness | September 4, 2008 11:05 AM | Report abuse

Joe Biden exceptionally qualified?

From the Gerbil News Network:

WASHINGTON, D.C. As the race for the Democratic presidential nomination winds down in a bloody finish like the last rounds of an Ali-Frazier slugfest, Senator Joseph Biden is working quietly behind the scenes to position himself as a compromise candidate able to unite a deadlocked convention.

“I have a lot more hair plugs than any other candidate.”

“We’re here as an alternative for delegates who can’t make up their minds, or who have lost their minds,” says Biden senior advisor Wendell Hagerty. “What with Clinton and Obama tearing each other’s hair out, isn’t it refreshing to have a candidate whose hair is held firmly in place by follicular micrografting?”

LL: I haven't met Sanjaya Malakar, but I can tell you, Joe Biden is no Sanjaya Malakar!

Posted by: Loomis | September 4, 2008 11:09 AM | Report abuse

Everyone's always on about the Art of War. Sun Tsu this, Sun Tsu that. But for near-mystical examination of stuff Westerners don't ever really understand, myself included, I always turn to Musashi's A Book of Five Rings. Which is available online here:

I recommend this to Joe Biden.

Posted by: Jumper | September 4, 2008 11:10 AM | Report abuse

Actually, slyness, we were practicing our mad playing card ninja skilz...


Posted by: Scottynuke | September 4, 2008 11:12 AM | Report abuse

The "All hair, very catty" version of "All hat, no cattle."

Posted by: Shiloh | September 4, 2008 11:13 AM | Report abuse

Ahem, Mudge-I've also spent time as an army company commander in Jordan and Egypt, and was stationed in Korea for a year. Lived on Okinawa for 18 months as a kid. Only been to Mexico once, but not only have I been to Canada I can name all the provinces and get all the jokes on Rick Mercer. (You don't suppose someone was tracking my visit to that Canadian immigration site last night? Wouldn't want my ambassadorial appointment to be controversial because I've "gone native.")

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 11:13 AM | Report abuse

Yeah, Scotty, I know. But you didn't clean up after yourselves. I shoulda made the two of you use those ninja skilz to put the decks back together!

Posted by: slyness | September 4, 2008 11:14 AM | Report abuse

Amazingly, George Will made a cogent point the other day. On the subject of qualifications for the Presidency, he noted that the single most-qualified person ever to hold the office, judged on the basis of international policy experience, elective office-holding, appointed-office holding, and just about every other possible resumé check-box, was James Buchanan, arguably the Worst President Ever (WPE). Will chose not to argue the point, however, nor to address the modern contender for Buchanan's title of WPE. *I*, however, will address it: the current incumbent had the kind of experience that has been the sine qua non of Presidential preparation in the past 8 Presidential elections (including re-elections), in that he was governor of a large state. Now, I happen to think that his duplicity was apparent before the 2000 election, and his incompetence and incomprehension of the Presidential oath of office became apparent not too long afterwards, yet somehow he managed to get re-elected in 2004. After 2004, sticker shock set in among all those who had voted for him, who suddenly "discovered" that he wasn't so good at the job. Even if one is not willing to concede him the title of WPE, he is certainly way down there.

So, now, we have Sarah Palin and John McCain. Sarah Palin's resumé is mighty thin, but looks roughly comparable to Obama's on paper, except that Obama also has taught Constitutional law -- a nice change of awareness from the current administration. Unlike Palin, according to what is reported from Alaska, there is reason to think that he understands that executive office does not confer legal autocratic power. We have her policy ideas, which are pretty much like the present administration, only more so. I see that there are spots of compassion in Sarah Palin's platform -- for instance, she says that parents of special-needs children will find a friend in Washington with her there. This is related to a huge failing of what passes for conservatism -- they find compassion only where they have direct personal experience. Laura Bush was an educator, and so Bush's rock-rib conservatism finds a soft spot for education (albeit, I would argue, badly mishandled). Sarah Palin has a baby with Down's syndrome and suddenly discovers that special-needs families could use some help. It's nice that they can find commonality and a willingness to help folks -- but it would be even nicer if they could find that commonality without demanding such an immediate and unsubtle similarity. Do I have to share your problem to appreciate that it's real? I'm not black, not female, not old, not rich, I'm lousy at basketball, and I'm not from Delaware -- does that mean I should vote for no one in this election? Making political decisions on the basis of such superficialities is willfully ignorant and just plain dumb.

And lastly, we have public temperament. We have been given the chance to measure McCain's temperament, and see that he makes a snap decision for VP without gathering too much information. We have measured Obama's temperament, and Biden's. Now it's time to measure Sarah Palin's, and see whether she can make McCain's snap decision look wise or not. Whether wise or otherwise, a McCain presidency has stronger odds than usual for ending with a President Palin in office. Are you ready to vote her into office directly? On the basis of superficial biographical similarities? Because a vote for McCain is not far from that.

Posted by: PlainTim | September 4, 2008 11:18 AM | Report abuse

yep, palin did pretty well, considering her lack of prime time experience. it's not about general appeal to independents, which i don't think palin has, but about independents in swing states. i think palin will appeal to some women in the swing states and help primarily with the turnout of the base.

Posted by: L.A. lurker | September 4, 2008 11:18 AM | Report abuse

Was anyone else put off by the Palins passing around the 5-month-old like a trophy while the crowd roared? At least no one dangled him by his legs over the balcony railing...

Posted by: allbetsareoff | September 4, 2008 11:21 AM | Report abuse

dbG says lunch at the beach. I have light lemonade in a very large, soccer-sized cooler. I like finger food so we can keep moving in and out of the waves for tidbits. Later in the evening, we will have a proper clam bake, etc. Let's ration the hot water so everybody can de-sand themselves.


pinwheels of mozzarella wrapped with prusciuto
ciabiatta slices to be dipped in balsamic vinegar
cold asparagus with dip made of gorgonzola and really good yogurt...sort of an Italian ziggy sauce.

Perfect peaches. Perfect plums.

Posted by: College Parkian | September 4, 2008 11:26 AM | Report abuse

I have yellow and red cherry tomatoes, sweet and tart, to be eaten like grapes. Also some left over rhubarb crisp that would be great if someone will scoot up to the boardwalk and get some vanilla soft serve to put atop.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 11:29 AM | Report abuse

allbets-we remarked upon the prop like use of Trig last night.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 11:31 AM | Report abuse

Yup, I think the vice presidential debate is going to be very interesting, especially about energy.

The Biden family was once rolling in money, when Joe Biden's grandfather, also Joe Biden, served as an executive for the American Oil Company, formerly Standard Oil of Indiana. Amoco is one of those firms that got rolled into British Petroleum, as did Sinclair and Atlantic Richfield.

I read that there is a real push on to get Biden's autobiography out, in paperback, on store shelves.

Posted by: Loomis | September 4, 2008 11:32 AM | Report abuse

I think that Mrs. Palin was just spending what quality time she can (albeit high-profile) with her newborn between her professional duties! I would not have been surprised if she would (delibeately) have stood to the side of the stage and breast-fed him (for political purposes, pandering to the public breastfeeding agenda). Though I suppose the event organizers thought that would not be good visual imagery, as they are trying to paint her into the Oval Office, finger hovering above the button and a baby on her breast. There again, that might be quite effective...

Posted by: NJIndyVoter | September 4, 2008 11:33 AM | Report abuse

They are are politicans,why wouldn't they do good. They look good and they all have the gift of Gab. They are either kissing the baby or snatching the candy from their unsuspecting hands.We have been dealing with this election process for over 2 years now. Quite frankly I will be happy when it is over and done with. I hope my man wins,but the whole process,the countless hours and money spent and we wonder why our economy stinks. Enough all ready.

My rant is over,back to the madness!!!!

Posted by: greenwithenvy | September 4, 2008 11:37 AM | Report abuse

Beach party! I'll bring the chaat
and kulfi

Posted by: DNA Girl | September 4, 2008 11:41 AM | Report abuse

Lunch! I'll add some jalapenos stuffed with cream cheese and wrapped in bacon, and some fresh tomato salsa. Maybe a little cold beer.

All the Dem and Repub candidates introduced and thanked their families during their acceptance speech, and that is only fair, considering the hell their families are or will be experiencing. After that, as they all say, I really think kids should be off-limits. For that reason I was disappointed that Palin chose to showcase her family. I hope she leaves the kids out of it from now on. If not, she's made them fair game, and that's a parenting choice I cannot approve. It would show poor judgment.

Posted by: Ivansmom | September 4, 2008 11:47 AM | Report abuse

CP, would you prefer I bring some ice-cold American-style chunky gazpacho, or would you rather have my fine-diced ceviche? (I usually use popcorn/baby shrimp, but can go to a whitefish or diced scallops if anyone is allergic to shrimp.) Pucker factor on my ceviche is generally up around 8; can dial up higher or lower upon request.

Have plenty of SPF 50 (Sears' best latex) for us Scandinavian-skinned folks.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 4, 2008 11:50 AM | Report abuse

If I may quote myself on Don LaFontaine's passing:

DON LAFONTAINE [VOICEOVER]: In a world where movie trailer voice Don LaFontaine has died, who will pick up the pieces? Who will speak for the Coming Attractions? Only one man.


BOBCAT GOLDTHWAIT: Aaaaaaa-aaa-aa- movie! Aaa- there- there- there's a guy, aaa-a-aaaaa!

Frosti, you'd better believe someone in the bowels of the government has tracked your Canuckophile activities. The next time you happen to order poutine in a KFC, your name goes on the Watch List.

"George Will made a cogent point the other day." It always freaks me out a little when that happens. The last time it did, I ended up using a GW quote as my email signature.

I'm too young to remember Alben Barkley, but I do remember hearing a piece on him on NPR just a couple of days ago. I believe their website has his final speech online.

Happy B-Day, Maggie.

Posted by: byoolin | September 4, 2008 11:50 AM | Report abuse

I'm in for lunch! Will bring peach tea with Splenda and openfaced tomato sandwiches on party rye with oregano...

I don't have to get in the water if I don't want to, do I? I prefer to stroll on the beach.

Posted by: slyness | September 4, 2008 11:53 AM | Report abuse

Michael Kinsley's 'Memo to Palin'...

Memo to Palin

“Our son Track is 19. And one week from tomorrow…he’ll deploy to Iraq…. My nephew Kasey also enslisted…. My family is proud of both of them…. In our family, it’s two boys and three girls…. From the inside, no family seems typical. That’s how it is with us. Our family has the same ups and downs as any other…. Todd is a story all by himself…. We met in high school and two decades and five children later he’s still my guy…. My parents are here tonight, and I am so proud to be the daughter of….”

Did someone forget to tell Sarah Palin that families are off-limits?

By Michael Kinsley | September 3, 2008; 11:56 PM ET

Posted by: TBG | September 4, 2008 11:56 AM | Report abuse

A community organizer bit my sister once.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 4, 2008 12:01 PM | Report abuse

I have a lovely portable table and a colorful checkered table cloth that will look great on the beach, spread with all the fabulous food. I have four comfy chairs, too. Anyone else have more?

Where's VintageLady with the report of her anniversary celebration? Sleeping in very late this morning, I suppose. Nice.

Posted by: TBG | September 4, 2008 12:01 PM | Report abuse

Mudge, I'm *always* good for the ceviche!

I'm thinking I'll bring a good cold spicy crab salad (picked from crabs left over from this past Labor Day) and some toasted french bread slices to spread it on.


Posted by: bc | September 4, 2008 12:03 PM | Report abuse

Slyness, will you wade up to your knees? You can look for interesting shells. (I always think it is a shame to go to the beach and at least not get a little wet. When we went on vacation to Beach Haven a couple weeks ago with my best friends, out of the four of us, only one person went in the water-- me. What a waste of time and effort.)

So c'mon, slyness. Salt water's good for you. Invigorating. You don't have to go out as far as the breakers or anything.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 4, 2008 12:10 PM | Report abuse

The doublethink on display in this country is getting insane. Do people really believe the lame excuses they are using to justify their own biases?

Alleged feminists suddenly deciding they like Palin because she has a familiar narrative when in truth their opinions were frozen the moment they learned that Palin was a she?

Alleged pundits suddenly realizing that all that high-falutin' book larning ain't worth nothing when in truth their opinions are whatever talking points are faxed to them from the GOP?

Evangelicals believing that a woman's sacred duty is to her family except when that woman can help put the godless in their place?

Forget room 101. I'm already there.

Posted by: RD Padouk | September 4, 2008 12:11 PM | Report abuse

To add to Applebaum's argument that women in their 40's will change politics profundly, here's Rachida Dati, unwed pregnant Garde des Sceaux (minister of justice) of the French Republic.

Applebaum's piece on the class of '64. (Dati's from 1965, that is close enough.)

Posted by: shrieking denizen | September 4, 2008 12:14 PM | Report abuse

Actually, if we're going to the beach, this masy be our last opportunities to go swiminng. We got some bad weather coming, and after we get through that cycle, it may be too late in the season. So it's now or never.

Last one in does the dishes!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 4, 2008 12:15 PM | Report abuse

Perfect beach weather here today, once again I shall spare everyone my lack food preparation ability and bring the beach toys.

Am actually off to take photos of the waterfront area near work.

Posted by: dmd | September 4, 2008 12:16 PM | Report abuse

I added some stuff about Romney and Obama and terrorism, fyi.

Posted by: Achenbach | September 4, 2008 12:16 PM | Report abuse

Watch out for the riptide, 'Mudge...

*faxin' a few life rings to the assembled throng*

*I said THRONG, people, with an 'R,' don't get excited*


Posted by: Scottynuke | September 4, 2008 12:18 PM | Report abuse

Oh. Question: who is bringing the whiffle football? bc? Scotty?

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 4, 2008 12:18 PM | Report abuse

Okay, Mudge, just for you I'll wade. Maybe I'll go waist-deep. A good friend came back from the beach with nasty jellyfish stings on an ankle. He and the fam had been to Hilton Head...I'm sooo not into stings.

Posted by: slyness | September 4, 2008 12:21 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, Joel. But you know, Romney's right. Obama didn't ever say "Evil Islam", much less promise to defeat it. He just promised to defeat our specific enemies. That is not nearly as stirring. In fact he didn't call anyone evil, in the whole speech. Apparently that is un-American. A real President isn't afraid to recognize Evil. Sometimes we even do business with it.

I hope you're joining us for lunch.

Posted by: Ivansmom | September 4, 2008 12:23 PM | Report abuse

Today, it's easier to just go ahead and get wet at the beach rather than try half-measures. Hurricane swell.

Posted by: Dave of the Coonties | September 4, 2008 12:23 PM | Report abuse

Latest news:
"OTTAWA - Prime Minister Stephen Harper will visit Gov. Gen. Michaelle Jean early Sunday morning and ask her to dissolve the 39th Parliament, Canwest News Service has learned.

Canadians will vote Oct. 14, after the shortest campaign permitted by law. "

A 40 day campaign, what's not to like?

Well there is the lousy uninteresting candidates all-around but eh, they're Canadian.

I bet Michaëlle will be all coiffed and ready, Stephen won't catch her in bunny slippers and tattered tericloth bathrobe...

Posted by: shrieking denizen | September 4, 2008 12:25 PM | Report abuse

I was puzzled by the selection of Governor Palin as GOP VP nominee until last night. During her acceptance speech I realized that McCain did not select the governor of Alaska (and previously small-time mayor, etc). He chose a "salt-of-the-earth rural American."

As people ask those old-fashioned questions about qualifications, experience, and policy positions, I can visualize the GOP response: "Why do you hate America?" They will translate any question about Palin's abilities into an attack on good, hardworking Americans.

"What's that you say? The world is complicated and you need to know stuff to lead? Nonsense! You just have to be a good basic person with your values intact and everything will work out."

I acknowledge they made the same argument for G. W. Bush and that led to unsatisfactory results. Furthermore, comparing Palin's executive experience favorably to the legislative experience of Obama-Biden also attacks that of McCain. Details, my friends, these are mere details. Don't overthink it!

(For any criticism of McCain, please refer to his record of military service.)

Front page alert disclaimer: I've been reading Ablog for years but rarely post comments.

Posted by: Fifty | September 4, 2008 12:26 PM | Report abuse

The Republicans at the convention liked her. That's nice, but I wonder how many thinking Republicans were appalled by her seeming lack of self-awareness. I found her grating and her permanent smile as she talked nasty smack about Obama to be intensely frightening. Her heedless self-confidence despite her thin resume reminded me of W. Like him, she doesn't let the facts get in the way of a good story. We don't need any more of that.

Posted by: Chuck | September 4, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse

Hockey moms with lips
Scrubbed clean of gross lipstick
Equals friendly dog?

Wagging shortface dog
Eats lipstick, goes to hockey;
"Hi, Sarah Palin!"

Pit Bulls mean any dog;
With bad rep for biting kids
Mostly undeserved.

Hockey moms bite kids?
What do they DO in Juneau?
Pit bulls are nicer.

Friendly dog grin scares.
False accusation, no trial.
"Dangerous" dog dies.

I do not like thee;
Palin--Why, I have just told.
Bad stereotype!

Posted by: Wilbrodog | September 4, 2008 12:32 PM | Report abuse

Lunchtime already? Wait for me - got to make a second cup of coffee, then I'll be there with Yakima peaches, pears, fresh basil and the last of my tomatoes. Oh, and vanilla ice cream. I'm taking today and tomorrow off to enjoy the last days of summer here.

Fifty, you're quite right. Post away! Come have lunch at the beach.

Kguy! We've missed you.

kb, I read the Obama campaign email that you posted in the previous Boodle and sent (another) contribution to them. Huzzah for community organizers! Frostbitten, great idea for a commercial.

Posted by: mostlylurking | September 4, 2008 12:33 PM | Report abuse

My latest Obama commercials-

Doctor in the ER with her own voice over saying "I was the first person in my family to get an Ivy League education" as numbers tick by from 0 to her final education debt. "Governor Palin's grandchildren will be eligible for social security when I pay off my student loans and she calls me an elitist. Vote Obama."

Cute brown skinned kids on an inner city front stoop. One says to the other, "The republicans say working hard and going to a highly selective college is elitist." His friend replies "I guess no child left behind means we aren't supposed to get ahead either."

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 12:35 PM | Report abuse

I forget where I saw the Don LaFontaine TV piece, but I was impressed with how he used his hands to help himself evoke the mindset of each line he read. What a pro.

Posted by: Jumper | September 4, 2008 12:37 PM | Report abuse

Welcome, Fifty! Please join us at the beach!

I was thinking of this exact argument yesterday when I had to explain to someone on the business side why I set up something the way I did. After about 2 minutes of detail, his eyes glazed over. Not everything's easy.

I'm bringing homemade extra-short shortbread cookies shaped in madeleine tins and some ratatouille (got a nice eggplant from the garden yesterday). No matter how I spell madeleine, it looks wrong, so I'm giving up and going to get the puppy.

Posted by: dbG | September 4, 2008 12:37 PM | Report abuse

The "Bridge to Nowhere" is actually a bridge to an airport - the only airport for the 4th largest town in Alaska. A town that sits on an island, with the airport on another island. When the airport location was decided on, the town was promised a bridge. All these years later, still no bridge. But we do get ridiculed on a daily basis.

Yesterday I paid $22 for the privilege of riding a ferry across to the airport to put my sister on a flight. When was the last time anyone who sneers about the "Bridge to Nowhere" had to pay to drive up to their airport?

Posted by: Roadskipper | September 4, 2008 12:44 PM | Report abuse

In the mean and unfair department: every time I glance over the name "Sarah Palin", my first impression is that it says "Sarah Putin."

Posted by: PlainTim | September 4, 2008 12:47 PM | Report abuse

Fifty... glad you chimed in. I like the stuff you said, too. Keep on hitting that "submit" button. It's pretty easy once you get the hang of it. Darn near addicting; I'm sure if you've been reading our blather for years you already know that.

Posted by: TBG | September 4, 2008 12:47 PM | Report abuse

RD, re. your 12:11 PM
My friend, I love ya.

Welcome to the 21st century.

Time to put the pleated pants and hardcopy books away, and consider the idea that our Golden Information Age is less about original thinking and more about cutting and pasting someone else's thinking, ideas, and words that we happen to identify with; adopting and advocating them for our own, where they serve our biases and purposes.

And there's no need for you to go to Room 101. I'll pour us a couple of glasses of red wine at the Bunker bar then and we'll head out to the Bunker porch (hell, I'll bring the bottle), put our feet up and laugh about Everything.


Posted by: bc | September 4, 2008 12:50 PM | Report abuse

Roadskipper, you're not alone. Not even close. If you live west of Dulles, the choice is either the toll road (the Greenway, which might even still be privately owned) or the really long-way around that's not worth the time or the gas. And then there's parking...

Posted by: LostInThought | September 4, 2008 12:52 PM | Report abuse

Hi mostlylurking and dbG! Thanks for the beach invite. Out here in northern CA, the beach experience is usually cold and windy. Let's see I'll bring some good coffee to go with the madeleines. And a warm coat!

dbG, I was thinking about your comment from a few days past wondering if McCain would change his mind about Palin. It seemed possible a few days ago but now I doubt he will.

Unless ... it can be framed with the same "attack on American values" meme! She was chased out by the "hate America" crowd!

This must have been what Peggy Noonan was talking about when she used a "barnyard epithet" about the Palin choice and said the GOP went with the narrative (as opposed to substance, presumably). I haven't read Noonan's full backpedal editorial yet ...

TBG thanks for the kind words. I'd post more often but I'm short on ideas!

Posted by: Fifty | September 4, 2008 12:57 PM | Report abuse

Why did they build an airport on an island with no road access? That's even sillier than wanting a bridge if you ask me.

Posted by: TBG | September 4, 2008 1:00 PM | Report abuse

Can I join the beach picnic? I can bring some very nice Zinfandel and Merlot from Burrell School Winery from when I was in California. The winery is a cool looking little red school house.

I promise to behave and not bite any community organizers.

Posted by: yellojkt | September 4, 2008 1:01 PM | Report abuse

Hey Fifty! Good to hear from you. Yes, please come to the beach with us, you'll have a good time.

Posted by: slyness | September 4, 2008 1:06 PM | Report abuse

"I'd post more often but I'm short on ideas!"

Has that ever stopped any of us?


Posted by: TBG | September 4, 2008 1:07 PM | Report abuse

"If you think common sense is the only kind of sense you need, you don't have any." - Jumper
New polls

Posted by: Jumper | September 4, 2008 1:09 PM | Report abuse

Hi Fifty. Being short on ideas has never stopped me from posting!

Yep, bc, I think a nice glass of the 'ol vino might do me good.

Some of the commentators over at Slate pointed out that Sarah Palin is kinda like Ann Coulter in that she can get away with being nasty because she smiles so prettily as she spews venom.

And Cassandra - you are so very correct that there is a lot more to come. This was like a big flashy over-the-top Debutante ball. And I like to think that when she is pushed out of her comfort zone Palin's weaknesses will become more apparent.

But I dunno.

People see what they want to see. And Sarah Palin's snobby grrrl-power anti-elitism is going to be tricky to defuse.

Posted by: RD Padouk | September 4, 2008 1:13 PM | Report abuse

Good point about the parking, LIT.

I would also add that not only are we paying to drive to the airport and park there, but how much in taxes are we paying a gallon of gasoline, for the purchase of a vehicle, for the privilage of registering and operating said vehicle, etc.

Nothing's free, is it?
Including Freedom.

Everything costs something (trying not to invoke the First Law of Thermodynamics and Newton's Third Law here, though I think RDs 12:11 comment makes some movement towards the Second Law of Thermodynamics.).

Gadzooks, I seem awfully philocynical today. Something tells me that that Washington NFL Franchise game at the New York football Giants isn't going to help my state of mind, either.


Posted by: bc | September 4, 2008 1:20 PM | Report abuse

Good Luck to the Redskins Tonight!!!

Off to work.....

Posted by: greenwithenvy | September 4, 2008 1:22 PM | Report abuse

Did anyone catch the news from Brian Williams, mid-broadcast last night and not more than four sentences, about the American raid into Pakistan, an action that inflamed Pakistanis?

The Los Angeles Times follows up today, with more specifics about the incursion into Musa Nika in the Angoor Adda district in South Waziristan. The LA Times doesn't use the phrase "Islamic terrorist" but rather "Islamic militants" and "militant haven."

I find it amazing that Obama, in his speech, never once mentioned Pakistan.,0,6575659.story

Posted by: Loomis | September 4, 2008 1:40 PM | Report abuse

*after a dip and lunch, am peacefully snoozing under my jury-rigged little beach cabana made of oversized beach towels. Probably wake up to discover my head above sand, rest of me buried up to neck in sand. Meanwhile, nearby, CP knits under giant umbrella and her 3-foot diameter sun hat. Slyness reads. Scotty and bc toss whiffle football. TBG, ML, dmd playing pinocle. Seagulls squawk overhead. Smell of salt air, sound of gentle surf breaking, kids shouting down the beach. Biplane flies past pulling sign for Outback Steakhouse.

All's right with the world*

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 4, 2008 1:43 PM | Report abuse

RD, no need to drive.

Let's finish the bottle.


And what's with the whiffle-football, Mudge? I have my trusty NFL spec-ball complete with Pete Rozelle's signature on it... (clearly, it's not new).


Posted by: bc | September 4, 2008 1:45 PM | Report abuse

My bad.

Obama in Denver:
"And when I am President, I will immediately begin to remove our troops, I will finally put meaningful pressure on Iraq's leaders to reconcile, and I will end this war. And I will do what we should have done back in 2002: increase our commitment to Afghanistan, press Pakistan to take action against terror, and finish the fight with al Qaeda."

What does "press to take action" mean? "Increase our commitment?" "Meaningful pressure?" Devil in the details?

Posted by: Loomis | September 4, 2008 1:45 PM | Report abuse

Roadskipper, let's consider the case for your bridge.

The per capita spending for this proposed bridge is quite large, considering it serves an airport of only 400,000 trips per year, and its intended purpose is to help a town that has a means of access in the ferry, albeit an undesirable means. The proposed cost was $220M in Federal funds, as I recall. The price may be legitimate for what it costs to build the bridge, but is the justification for the bridge sufficient to justify spending the funds? The proposed cost breaks down to an expenditure of $550 per annual trip. More economical to subsidize your ferry cost at $22 each way. The same expenditure would pay for 12.5 years of ferry trips, round-trip. Of course, the reporting so far seems to indicate that while Gov. Palin suddenly discovered the uselessness of a pork-barrel bridge that she had previously championed, she did not discover a reason to return the money to the Gov't. If Alaskans think it's so all-fired important to have that bridge, they can pay for it themselves. You have 684,000 residents (according to Wikipedia), which means that if each resident contributed $322, you could pay for the bridge yourselves, free and clear. My understanding is that the budget-surplus checks that Gov. Palin approved last year for each resident were substantially greater than this amount. You have the money, and a need that is demonstrably purely local. Pay for it your own dang selves. According to Wikipedia, also, Alaska has the 6th-highest median income in the country. I am sure that that income is not evenly distributed, of course, but the money is there if the state develops the will to ask more of those who have more to give -- it's called progressive taxation. If the state of Alaska is opposed to progressive taxation and prefers its taxes to be regressive and penalize the poor, that's fine, but don't expect to come whining to the rest of the country about how your abject poverty keeps you from building necessary public-works projects.

Posted by: PlainTim | September 4, 2008 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Howdy fifty. Nice analysis. Keep posting - as others have said, no ideas necessary.

RD, I share your anguish. Can I join you and bc on the porch with the wine? bc, you are a wise fella indeed.

I like the Ann Coulter comparison. I hope it gets some traction.

Posted by: Ivansmom | September 4, 2008 1:48 PM | Report abuse

Wilbrodog, some Hockey mom's are great, thank you.

As for lipstick, there's no lipstick in hockey rinks :-), especially at 6:00 am.

Posted by: dmd | September 4, 2008 1:50 PM | Report abuse

And very nicely said, PlainTim. Have some wine - or a nice cold beer at the beach picnic. That's the beauty of imaginary revels. One may enjoy two adult beverages at once, while relaxing in two different locations.

Posted by: Ivansmom | September 4, 2008 1:50 PM | Report abuse

What PlainTim said X 10. But, as a small town mayor I do have an as yet unsatisfied taste for bacon.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 1:53 PM | Report abuse

Can I be a good evangelical Christian AND a fascist at the same time?

Just wondering.

––Alaska First!

Posted by: tony the pitiful copywriter | September 4, 2008 1:54 PM | Report abuse

About the speechwriting - I thought it was widely believed that Obama wrote his acceptance speech - and his books. That's one of the things I find impressive about him, how well he writes. I suppose that's an elitist failing on my part. And I'm sure he has people helping him, now especially. But in 2004, when he was an unknown, he came up with a pretty good speech on his own (or so I would believe).

Posted by: mostlylurking | September 4, 2008 1:58 PM | Report abuse

Thank you, PlainTim, for those comments.

*sigh* Yes, Mudge, it's hard to stay awake on the beach after such a lovely lunch. I brought Persuasion to read, figuring it would be appropriate. Maybe some Hornblower would work for the next time.

Posted by: slyness | September 4, 2008 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Doesn't pinochle require four players?

Posted by: omni | September 4, 2008 2:03 PM | Report abuse

//Musa Nika in the Angoor Adda district in South Waziristan//

for some reason this has made me laugh and laugh -- not the content or the poster, just the words.

Posted by: nellie | September 4, 2008 2:04 PM | Report abuse

I prefer "real" beach reading at the beach, slyness, not the heavier stuff. Mysteries, thrillers, bodice-rippers. Here, you can borrow my latest James Lee Burke Dave Robicheaux novel; I'm gonna roll over and go back to sleep.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 4, 2008 2:06 PM | Report abuse

Don't forget Mudge... Fifty is here with us playing cards. Nice enough to bring an extra deck, too.

Sigh. The beach with friends, food and fun. Does it get any better than this?

Daughter and I spent a lovely time last week on the beach watching a little Sandpiper chase down sand fleas. It was quite hilarious. She would find one, start trying to grab onto it and then drop it and run away every time a person came walking by as if to say to the intruder, "you're much bigger.. you can have it!"

When the coast was clear, she'd run back and start pecking at the sand flea again. The amazing thing was that she could run from the water of a wave on the sand and knew exactly an inch away from where it would stop. She'd fly up and away from the wave and ALWAYS land one inch away on the sand and not get wet. She knew exactly how far that water was going to go.

She eventually lost one sand flea to a bigger seagull who ate what he could and then the Sandpiper was able to still get little pieces of meat the bigger bird couldn't reach with his bigger beak.

Daughter gave the little bird a fitting rapper name: Pipemaster Sand. Don't ask me why... but it made us laugh every time we said it. The beach does that to you.

Posted by: TBG | September 4, 2008 2:08 PM | Report abuse


from: Pinochle

"Pinochle is a card game that is usually played with four people, sometimes with two, less frequently with three, five or six. It is sometimes called pinocle or penuchle and usually pronounced pea-knuckle. Some people even spell it peaknuckle.

"One of the interesting things about Pinochle is the way it combines set making (melding) with trick taking. The melding takes place first and is done openly, providing the other players with information which can be used during the trick taking phase. This also adds an element of a memory game to Pinochle.

"There are many different variations with regard to both gameplay and scoring. Note in particular that some players choose to divide all point scoring by ten."

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 4, 2008 2:09 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, TBG. Last I saw Fifty he (?) had gone for a walk down the beach toward the jetty. Then nodded off, didn't realize he'd gotten back yet.

Thought maybe he'd found a Good Humor truck up at the beach entrance and brought back a bunch of popsicles and lemon italian ices. (Hey, I can dream, can't I, while I'm snoozing?)

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 4, 2008 2:15 PM | Report abuse

Oh, The only way I know to play pinochle is as a low impact team sport.

Posted by: omni | September 4, 2008 2:16 PM | Report abuse

TBG, et al are being very patient, helping me play pinochle. I never really learned that game - my sister tried to teach me when I was about 7, but I was a miserable failure. I did learn Canasta, Bridge, Hearts later - got to be pretty good at Hearts in college. My best friend from high school is a very competitive game player - she cleaned my clock at Uno and Scrabble when I visited her a couple of years ago.

Posted by: mostlylurking | September 4, 2008 2:16 PM | Report abuse

Tonight John McCain will wow the GOP convention with his defense of Georgia and Ukraine. "We are all Caucasians now", and the cameras will show it to be true.

Posted by: Guy | September 4, 2008 2:18 PM | Report abuse

I knew there was no income tax in Alaska. It really annoys Canadian places near the border of Alaska. Turns out there is no state sales tax either. And look at the average property taxes as well.
"Alaska is the only state that does not collect state sales tax or levy an individual income tax. To finance state operations, Alaska depends primarily on petroleum revenues. Some of its cities and other local jurisdictions, however, do collect sales tax revenue."
"Only 25 Alaskan municipalities (either cities or boroughs) levy a property tax. The average per capita property tax paid in 2007 in all municipalities, excluding oil and gas properties, was $1,228."

and yet 8.5times the average per capita earmarks from congress:

"Arizona, the second fastest growing state in the nation, will receive just $18.70 per capita in federal earmarks this fiscal year (08). By comparison, Alaska — with roughly a tenth of Arizona's population — is set to receive $506.34 per capita, the highest in the nation, according to Taxpayers for Common Sense,"
"The state of Alaska receives about three times as much as Arizona receives in actual dollars, $346 million to $119 million."

Posted by: shrieking denizen | September 4, 2008 2:25 PM | Report abuse

Liked your 2:18, Guy.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 4, 2008 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Guy... your 2:18 is great. Please send rags for the coffee spewed on my monitor.

Posted by: TBG | September 4, 2008 2:31 PM | Report abuse

During a visit to the mental asylum, a visitor asked the Director what the criterion was which defined whether or not a patient should be institutionalized. "Well," said the Director, "we fill up a bathtub, then we offer a teaspoon, a teacup and a bucket to the patient and ask him or her to empty the bathtub."

Posted by: Jumper | September 4, 2008 2:46 PM | Report abuse

"Oh, I understand," said the visitor. "A normal person would use the bucket because it's bigger than the spoon or the teacup.

"No." said the Director, "A normal person would pull the plug out. Do you want a room with or without a view?"

Posted by: Jumper | September 4, 2008 2:51 PM | Report abuse

So I'm at the wailing wall, standing there like a moron, with my harpoon.

Posted by: Jumper | September 4, 2008 2:59 PM | Report abuse

It is depressing how easily Republican speech writers and campaign organizers can distract the public and media, and how many voters may make decisions based on who says things that are easier to understand and that play to their insecurities.

Equally depressing is that Democratic candidates generally find it so difficult to point out in simple terms the Republican ruse and fallacies and to shift the focus back.

Nasty attacks based on insecurities (more well-spoken = snob) get results.

Are the McCain and his 7 houses ads too subtle, or are biases based on more emotional appeals just more effective (e.g., fear - Willie Horton), (elitist = condescending snob)?

Posted by: Arlington, VA | September 4, 2008 3:03 PM | Report abuse

If Palin's teleprompter had broken, she would have looked like one of those things she shoot for sport; sorta like a deer in headlights. It was obvious Pailin's only contribution to that speech was her family introduction and her note that the only difference between her an a pit bull is "lipstick."

Posted by: ccobb | September 4, 2008 3:10 PM | Report abuse

CBS reports that Palin, as governor, slashed funding for special needs kids by 62%. Remember, she claimed to be an advocate of special needs children last night. These are the kind of facts the McCain camp would rather the media didn't investigate. And these are the little heartwarming gems that Sarah Palin would rather no journalist confronted her with. I hope the public (and media) is astute enough to realize there's something seriously wrong with a VP candidate avoiding the press.

Posted by: DogBitez | September 4, 2008 3:10 PM | Report abuse

From Milbank's chat, this is the best yet:

Silver Spring, Md.: Dana, I realized who Ms. Palin reminds me of -- Dolores Umbridge from the Harry Potter books. They're both sickly sweet, with venom and malice underneath. I hope, though, that Ms. Palin ends up like Ms. Umbridge did. From Wikipedia: "Following Voldemort's demise and the de-corruption of the Ministry, Umbridge is arrested, interrogated, put on trial, and imprisoned for her crimes against Muggle-borns."

Dana Milbank:

I was with my brother in New York this week and he was wearing a T-shirt that said "Republicans for Voldemort."

Posted by: slyness | September 4, 2008 3:11 PM | Report abuse

Roadskipper, if I take the turnpike in, I do indeed pay to get to the airport, not to mention spending an hour in bumper to bumper. Parking at the airport averages $30 a day.

You were saying?

Posted by: dbG | September 4, 2008 3:13 PM | Report abuse

I just heard Palin's speech referred to as the "How Dare You" speech. That is, it didn't answer questions as much as deny that the questions should have even been asked.

Posted by: RD Padouk | September 4, 2008 3:15 PM | Report abuse

"A small town mayor is sort of like a community organizer, except that you have actual responsibilities."

But Obama was a community organizer twenty years ago and Palin was a small town mayor (who created a new administrative post under her to do most of the work) twenty months ago.

Since Obama was a community organizer he's gone to Harvard, got a law degree, written two best-selling books, worked as a civil rights lawyer, taught constitutional law for a decade, and been a state senator and US senator for nearly 12 years. And got married and had two kids, not 85. And run for President and destroyed the Clinton machine.

During which time Ms Palin was flirting with the Alaska Independence Party. Hawaii has a much stronger claim to independence than Alaska. Imagine the fuss if Obama had been involved with the Hawaiian separatists. Imagine the fuss if his daughter had a bun in the oven.

Posted by: not impressed | September 4, 2008 3:25 PM | Report abuse

@Loomis: From what I can find online, the single source for this story paints Biden's father (not grandfather) as a sales rep for Amoco, not an exec. Big difference there. The other jobs he held were with fairly small companies, technically white collar positions, but not exactly the Wall Street millionaire schtick. And Biden himself frequently mentions that the family's fortunes declined, not that he was always poor.

Posted by: Josh | September 4, 2008 3:25 PM | Report abuse

I once worked for a company and Prescott Bush was on the board of directors. Please don't hate me.

Posted by: Jumper | September 4, 2008 3:30 PM | Report abuse

CNN had a headline earlier today that called her "Pitbull Palin."

As ludicrous as I find her nomination, as hypocritical as I find her parading her family as a job qualification while insisting others (you know, non-Republicans) refrain from discussing them, it's easy to underestimate her. Must be the lipstick (although I'm confused. Any dog I know would like the lipstick off).

After 8 years of the W, I'm uneasy. Even with the schadenfreude I'm feeling due to Noonan, et al.

Thanks for the imaginary lunch and drinks today, guys!

Posted by: dbG | September 4, 2008 3:30 PM | Report abuse

Ohhhh, I'm so late logging in, you all (PT & neck stretching, but hopefully will be done sometime this month, and it's really not bad, just time consuming.

First, Happy Birthday Maggie, isn't this the greatest boodle/friends/celebrators? I do appreciate all of you all's well wishes yesterday and yes, we had a grand time last night and husband & I are looking forward to meeting many of you next month.

CP, thanks for the fashion commentary, keep it up for the likes of me. Hope somebody in this political season wears something truly tacky that we can hoot about. Probably won't be Cindy or Laura, they always look well put together, although Cindy could knock it off with those pleats, they look so juvenile to me.

Now, to go back to catch up. So Sarah was rockumsockum good or rockumsockum mediocre last night?

Joel's kit is intriguing, to say the least, but American Idols come and go these daze before I can learn their names.

Posted by: VintageLady | September 4, 2008 3:30 PM | Report abuse

Like, lick, there's not always a difference.

Posted by: dbG | September 4, 2008 3:31 PM | Report abuse

That's it, I'm resigning from my Home Owner's Association and will not support any other community activities. Who knew that the work I was doing was so irrelevant. Gonna spend the rest of my spare time shooting deer!

Posted by: ccobb | September 4, 2008 3:32 PM | Report abuse

Clearly, community organization is no longer needed nor desired in America (certainly not by members of the GOP).

Anarchy in the USA?

(sorry for the tune cootie that might set off for those of you of a certain age)


Posted by: bc | September 4, 2008 3:35 PM | Report abuse

Is it me or do we have a bunch of new arrivals?
Or lurking has become less fashionable?

Welcome everyone!

Tatsuya has started a new commentary related to the VP pick.
Warning!!! Heartily wait...sexist...umm of those.

Posted by: DNA Girl | September 4, 2008 3:36 PM | Report abuse

Don't forget to click 'next'

Posted by: Anonymous | September 4, 2008 3:41 PM | Report abuse

Palin and Giuliani told so many lies about Obama's career that it is sickening.

A few highlights of his career in the Senate:

Obama helped pass the 2007 Ethics Reform Law, which curbed the influence of lobbyists and was described as the “Most Sweeping Since Watergate.”

Obama passed the Illinois State Gift Ban Act “Heralded As the Most Sweeping Good-Government Legislation in Decades.”

Obama and Lugar passed Law Boosting U.S. Efforts To Keep WMDs And Other Dangerous Weapons Out Of The Hands Of Terrorists. In 2006, Obama and Lugar introduced The Cooperative Proliferation Detention Act.

Obama and Coburn Passed A Bill Creating A “Google-like” Database For The Public To Search Details About Federal Funding Awards.

Obama Passed Law Ensuring That Wounded Veterans Recovering In Military Hospitals Do Not Have To Pay For Their Meals Or Phone Calls To Family Members.

Obama Proposals Providing Improvements In Health Care For Recovering Soldiers Were Passed Into Law, Including Requirements For Post-Deployment Mental Health Screenings And National Study On The Needs Of Iraq War Veterans.

Obama Worked With Republicans To Pass Legislation, Which Became Law, Improving And Increasing Services For Homeless Veterans.

Obama Passed Bipartisan Legislation That Expanded Health Care Coverage To 154,000 Residents, Including 70,000 Children.

Obama Passed A Bill Creating $100 Million Earned Income Tax Credit As A Member Of The Minority Party In The Illinois Senate.

Obama Passed Near-Unanimous Death Penalty Overhaul Package.

Posted by: Another thing | September 4, 2008 3:45 PM | Report abuse

Which is more demanding, being a Cub Scout Pack leader, or leader of the free world? I don'know; to me, it's a toss-up.

Has anybody ever tried to put lipstick on a pitbull?

Here it is, chewing-on-my-pencil-hungry time, and I'm reading about yummy picnics on the beach. Made my black helicopters totaly crash. Ugh, you guys can be really cruel.

Posted by: Don from I-270 | September 4, 2008 3:49 PM | Report abuse

It's fun to hear from fifty, dogbitez, not impressed and fifty!

Happy birthday, Maggie and a belated birthday greeting to S'nuke. I've been out of pocket with internet troubles at home and too busy at work for more than a peek. Thank goodness I can stop in! I really am afraid I'm going to have a stroke. The hypocrisy from my Republican friends is literally giving me indigestion and high blood pressure. They love Palin and dutifully repeat all the talking points about her.

I was kind of surprised about the level of nastiness that I watched last night. I hope it backfires on the Republicans the way it did in 1992. Remember that mean, nasty speech by Marilyn Quayle?

I'm with dbG, though. I am very uneasy.

Posted by: Kim | September 4, 2008 3:50 PM | Report abuse

and guy, it was fun to hear from guy.

Posted by: Kim | September 4, 2008 3:52 PM | Report abuse


Might want to keep an eye out to the southeast and stock up on bottled water...

*crossing fingers for ya*


Posted by: Scottynuke | September 4, 2008 3:53 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for that DNA Girl.

Posted by: Kerric | September 4, 2008 3:54 PM | Report abuse

bc... I'll take a Sex Pistols tune cootie any day.

Or one from the Ramones.

Posted by: martooni | September 4, 2008 4:02 PM | Report abuse

Cosmic superstar... or should that be Comic Superstar? I can definitely see the GOP VP wannabe doing a parody of herself in November after McCain loses the election. Move over Tina Fey - No need to play the part of Palin if she can do it herself.

Posted by: dritchie | September 4, 2008 4:08 PM | Report abuse

Isn't Julieannie some sort of anti-family values guy with all sorts of filth smeared on himself? If I'm wrong, someone correct me.

Posted by: Jumper | September 4, 2008 4:14 PM | Report abuse

How about "Down in the Sewer" by the Stranglers, Martooni?

Posted by: Jumper | September 4, 2008 4:16 PM | Report abuse

For those who want all-Palin-all-the-time, I discovered a great Alaskan blog - This guy is great - very humorous, ironic, great viewpoint, reminds me a lot of Joel. The posters are very good, also - very few trolls. Intelligent, humorous, informed - remind y'all of anyone?

My favorite so far (quoted, I believe, from someone else's blog): "Jesus was a Community Organizer...Pontius Pilate was a Governor."

Posted by: TLF | September 4, 2008 4:22 PM | Report abuse

I keep forgetting to wish Maggie a happy birthday. Happy Birthday! And to everyone else I've missed, too. Now and forever. That should cover it.

Posted by: mostlylurking | September 4, 2008 4:24 PM | Report abuse

I have resurfaced from enforced servitude (and a week off as well) for at least a short time. I worked last night till almost midnight, while some others went till almost 1 a.m. (and they say working in the public realm is a piece of cake). Had to get in about on time this morning to oversee another aspect of our project.

I obviously didn't get to see Palin's speech, so I'm working from the news and comments from this morning. It seems obvious to me that Ms. Palin is groomed to be the dog that chews everyone's ankles while Mr. McCain bloviates on high about policy and strategy and oh by the way, I was a war hero. The GOP seems to be still in the Rove playbook--keep telling the big lies about your opponents, while castigating the media for thier "liberal bias", thereby making them out as the underdogs who need to get a break. Latest bad joke making the rounds--what do you call a teen-ager who practices abstinence? Pregnant. And have you heard some of what she said in the past about having everyone pray to get God on their side for some pet project she wanted up in the 49th?

OK, gotta go, but I may be able to check in more regularly now.

Posted by: ebtnut | September 4, 2008 4:32 PM | Report abuse

*waking up. Discovering everyone has gone, beach deserted. One foot has slipped out from under beach towel, and is severely sunburned. Aloe vera bottle empty. Good Humor popsicle wrappers everywhere*


Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 4, 2008 4:32 PM | Report abuse

Really loved that last line in your 4:22, TLF. Thanks for that one.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 4, 2008 4:34 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, all, for the beachin' birthday party today. I appreciate it all -- except getting thrown in. I HATE getting my hair wet

Posted by: Maggie O'D | September 4, 2008 4:36 PM | Report abuse

"When was the last time anyone who sneers about the "Bridge to Nowhere" had to pay to drive up to their airport?"

You obviously haven't been in NYC or on the Dulles Airport TOLL road.

Posted by: Wilbrod | September 4, 2008 4:47 PM | Report abuse

This is what’s wrong with our politics. At the Republican convention, speaker after speaker just flat-out lied, and our news media isn’t calling them on any of it. YOU CAN’T GET THE STORY FROM THE PUNDITS.

They smeared Barack Obama repeatedly and told lies big and small.

Here’s just a few of them:

- Sarah Palin and John McCain claim that Barack Obama wants to raise our taxes, but the vast majority of families are way better off under Barack Obama’s plan. JOHN MCCAIN ACTUALLY WANTS TO TAX OUR HEALTH BENEFITS!!! Barack Obama’s plan only raises taxes on people with individual incomes over a quarter-million dollars.

- Sarah Palin and John McCain lie and claim that their plan is better for people like us. They don’t cut taxes for us hardly at all, and wipe out that cut with their plan to tax our health benefits!!!! Barack Obama actually cuts middle class taxes to try to restore fairness that was lost under Bush.

- Sarah Palin lied when she said Barack Obama had authored “no major law, not even in the state senate.” This is just a bald-faced lie. In fact, just in the US Senate, Barack Obama passed the most sweeping reform package since Watergate, and reached across party lines to pass, with Senator Lugar, legislation to help keep nuclear weapons out of the hands of terrorists and, with Senator Coburn, legislation to create a revolutionary database that makes government more transparent and accountable.

- Sarah Palin and John McCain continue to lie about Barack Obama’s energy plans. They keep pushing more drilling as the main answer to our problems, when it won’t do anything to lower the price of gas. And then they claim Barack Obama, in the words of Palin, “is against producing [more energy]. Barack Obama is for producing more clean energy and ending our addiction to oil. He has the most comprehensive energy plan of any Presidential candidate in history.

- The Republicans keep attacking Barack Obama’s plans for Iraq, even though the Iraqi government AND THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION just signed an agreement that follows the plan Barack Obama has been advocating for months.

- It’s the same thing on negotiations and diplomacy. Sarah Palin attacked Barack Obama for holding the position that the Bush Administration has belatedly been forced to adopt: holding direct talks with Iran. We’re too strong a country to be afraid of talking to Iraq.

It goes on and on. I’m tired of the lies. AND I’M TIRED OF THE MEDIA NOT TELLING US THE TRUTH ABOUT THEM!

Posted by: No Spin Zone: | September 4, 2008 4:48 PM | Report abuse

I thought Obama was the sanjaya. He even look like him.

Posted by: God father | September 4, 2008 4:54 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for the quote, TLF.

By the by, take the "pit bull" and "hockey" out of the equation and what do you have?

Dogs and moms differ
In if lipstick is on lips
Or slung right below.

Wilbrodog's umbrage is well deserved, I think, for both hockey moms and pit bulls.

Posted by: Wilbrod | September 4, 2008 5:01 PM | Report abuse

I would like big headlines too. "Republican lies break all records."

Posted by: Paavo | September 4, 2008 5:01 PM | Report abuse

Happy birthday, Maggie!

My son is picking out a Halloween costume, and is tending toward something with a Star Wars theme. He just brought the catalogue to me and showed me some adult picks, including Vader, Obi Wan, and...a Gladiator. I'm tending toward the latter, although the late October breeze is an issue.

Posted by: jack | September 4, 2008 5:04 PM | Report abuse

In keeping with frosti's campaign commercials, I have a button to offer:

A Bridge to Nowhere

Posted by: dbG | September 4, 2008 5:14 PM | Report abuse

Happy Birthday Maggie!

And great to see you ebtnut! I always enjoy reading your posts.

That joke reminded me of the one we Catholics used to tell back as kids. What do you call a woman who practices the Rhythm Method?


Posted by: RD Padouk | September 4, 2008 5:15 PM | Report abuse

One word for cold legs, Jack. Pantyhose.

Posted by: Wilbrod | September 4, 2008 5:15 PM | Report abuse

Also, just saw that Miss Congeniality did a solo appearance and trashed Obama. Then she refused to answer questions.

Y'know, fair is fair. If she's not going to answer reporters' questions, I'd suggest they stop covering her. Let's see how long that would last.

Posted by: dbG | September 4, 2008 5:18 PM | Report abuse

More intellectual dishonesty from a patisan hack at the WaPo. Obama has accomplished NOTHING OF NOTE in his entire career. Palin on the other hand has been an executive for many years with a list of accomplishments. The reason Obama is labeled as JUST a celebrity is that HE HAS ACCOMPLISHED NOTHING. Even his biggest supporters can't come up with anything meaningful. Palin on the other hand already has, and she's not even running for POTUS! Crawl back under your rock Achentard

Posted by: ArlingtonHokie | September 4, 2008 5:18 PM | Report abuse

Oops. Sorry about that, Maggie. Our bad.

We'll get Mudge to spring for a visit to the hairdresser from the bunker budget.

Posted by: slyness | September 4, 2008 5:19 PM | Report abuse

prattling potentates of pessimism

Posted by: Anonymous | September 4, 2008 5:25 PM | Report abuse

If you're still here ArlingtonHokie, you might want to read some of the earlier comments, which profoundly disagree with you.

Before you call someone a partisan hack, you might want to find out what the words mean, separately and together. Don't worry, we won't make fun of you for moving your lips while you read the dictionary (sorry, I couldn't resist).

Palin is running for veep under the oldest possible 1st-termer ever. She IS running for Pres., not veep, because there is a very good chance (not that it would be good for anyone) that a term that starts with Pres. McCain would end with Pres. Palin.

The fiction that only executive experience counts towards Presidential preparation is idiocy. Just one example: W was a business executive (who ran every business into the ground), and he was a governor. Look how well that worked out.

Posted by: PlainTim | September 4, 2008 5:27 PM | Report abuse

oooh, good one, dbG!

Posted by: Kim | September 4, 2008 5:29 PM | Report abuse

Georgia GOP Congressman Calls Obama 'Uppity'

By Jonathan Weisman

Rep. Lynn Westmoreland, a conservative Republican from Georgia, let slip today what critics have been saying is the subtext of many of the attacks on Barack Obama: He's "uppity."

According to The Hill, a Capitol Hill newspaper, Westmoreland was discussing Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin's acceptance speech outside the House chamber today when he veered into his thoughts on Michelle and Barack Obama.

"Just from what little I've seen of her and Mister Obama, Senator Obama, they're a member of an elitist class individual that thinks that they're uppity," Westmoreland said.

When a reporter sought clarification on the racially loaded word, Westmoreland replied, "Uppity, yeah."

Read the rest here...

Posted by: TBG | September 4, 2008 5:29 PM | Report abuse

Hidey-Ho, fellow boodlers and former lurkers. I am exhausted -- intellectually (ooohhh, bad word) and otherwise. Been trying to write a brief and my head keeps exploding at the inanity of the other side's writing (if you could call it that).

So, I'm gonna call it a day. Looking forward to falling asleep over the paper (well, it's old news by now anyway, eh?) and watching the Redskins do whatever they will do -- how's *that* for optimism. The Lions, on the other hand, might just make us smile this year. And now that the mayor of Detroit has *finally* been kicked out, I hope the city can survive and go forward quickly. Or quickly enough.

I liked reading the posts of some of our new members. Dang! We are a good group of people, eh?

I can't HEAR you..............

Before I leave, lemme just say that Palin makes me itch! She's very creepy. Like those really, really popular girls in high school, who thought their teenage years were the best years of their lives. I am completely not impressed with her. Let's face it -- we all know what she was doing under those bleachers (and, alas, she appears to have become a great role model for her daughter -- how long do you think that forced marriage is going to last?).

Posted by: firsttimeblogger | September 4, 2008 5:34 PM | Report abuse

Too bad you were too busy to join us at lunch today ftb... Here's an extra glass of Prosecco. Sit back and relax. I think there are some leftovers here somewhere.

Posted by: TBG | September 4, 2008 5:44 PM | Report abuse

I accidentally learned that Chris Matthews is at his best around 5:00 p.m. Who knew? Not me. He ran rings around Julieannie.

Posted by: Jumper | September 4, 2008 5:51 PM | Report abuse

wow - thanks, TBG. Anything in a chocolate, perhaps???

This is one generous blogville.

Posted by: firsttimeblogger | September 4, 2008 5:51 PM | Report abuse

ftb, faxing you some flourless chocolate torte.

My own independent liberal outlook tells me Palin is a trainwreck, but I can't look away. 5 colleges in 6 years for her BA. (Gee, it only took me 3 colleges/universities and 7 years to get a BA, BS and MS, but then I lack her executive experience).,0,1503213.story

Posted by: dbG | September 4, 2008 5:57 PM | Report abuse

Please, Boodle, will someone organize an intervention for me? I'm afraid that if you don't, I'll turn the television on, and then you know what'll happen!

Posted by: Maggie O'D | September 4, 2008 5:59 PM | Report abuse

Thinking about the title of this Kit, I am smiling thinking about Randy, Paula, Simon and The New Girl sitting behind a table and giving their critique of Sneering Sarah...

Randy: "A little pitchy."

Paula: "I loooooooove your hairdo"

Simon: "Lady... You sound like a barking chihuahua. Next time, try singing your own song instead of the same one everyone else is singing."

Posted by: TBG | September 4, 2008 6:03 PM | Report abuse

That Obama. No experience.

Posted by: Paavo | September 4, 2008 6:03 PM | Report abuse

Results 1 - 9 of 9 for "legislation written by obama".

Results 1 - 9 of 9 for "legislation written by mccain".

Verrry interesting...

Posted by: Jumper | September 4, 2008 6:07 PM | Report abuse

Very interesting story, Paavo. Thanks for sharing. Imagine what could happen if President Obama decided to put heart and soul into solving the healthcare crisis. Or energy. Or Social Security. The mind boggles at the possibilities!

Posted by: slyness | September 4, 2008 6:26 PM | Report abuse

Hey Paavo (yes I'm still here at the 'puter) -- thanks for that link. I've sent it around.

Are you actually in Finland (the CEO one of my former Finnish clients had your name)or merely in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan? Or, um, somewhere else, perhaps? I know how to swear in Finnish, which has come in very handy over the years during a contract negotiation.

And copious thanks to dbG for the faxed flourless chocolate cake. (wiping crumbs from corner of mouth)

Posted by: firsttimeblogger | September 4, 2008 6:28 PM | Report abuse's lead article about Palin includes a picture from last night where her right arm is raised at about 45 degrees, hand open and flat towards the audience...

Purely coincidental timing on the photographer's part, I'm sure...

*blank expression*

Posted by: Scottynuke | September 4, 2008 6:40 PM | Report abuse

I want to see that filmed and put on YouTube.

You have got to check out this Sarah Palin impersonator. Amazing.

Posted by: yellojkt | September 4, 2008 6:42 PM | Report abuse

Paavo is an illustrious name, second only to Michael Phelps in Olympic Medals is Paavo Nurmi who won 9 gold and 3 silver in the 1920-28 track events.

Just got home, so if this info was previously mentioned, it bears repeating.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 4, 2008 6:48 PM | Report abuse

Lots of great article links by everyone. I've been busy off reading them, uh, I mean working.

dbG: you left out the best part: Palin's degree is in journalism! She can say she's trained to ask the questions rather than answer them. If McCain-Palin win, she'll have lots of practice not answering questions.

Arlington, VA above regretted the Republicans getting away with ruses and fallacies. The media seem to be getting better at fact-checking the party line, which encourages me.

Plus we have fun here deconstructing such premises as "Republicans as underdogs."

Rambling on further (one of those idea things would come in handy now), was anyone else struck by Governor Palin's use of traditional Democratic Party talking points in her intro and speech when first nominated? Things like working class roots and union membership? Must be part of that underdog thing.

Posted by: Fifty | September 4, 2008 6:59 PM | Report abuse

As an occasional lurker, I just wanted to give a huge shout-out to all you Achenblog Regulars (irregulars?) for a delicious virtual feast, and especially for some wonderful laughs in what is, for me, a depressing gameshow choice of a VP candidate. The trainwreck analogy had occurred to me as well, since I'm still reading about her, even though I know it won't make me feel any better. Like some of you, I'm a scientist, and her belief that intelligent design should be co-taught with evolution as a scientific theory (when there's no scientific test that I know of for a higher power) is the most depressing part of all.

Anyway, please keep me smiling - I have a feeling I'm going to need it over the next couple of months!

Posted by: TEL1 | September 4, 2008 6:59 PM | Report abuse

I love that, TEL1, Achenblog irregulars! Has a certain ring to it.


Posted by: Kim | September 4, 2008 7:08 PM | Report abuse

TEL1... was that you on the beach playing frisbee and eyeing our lunch? You're always welcome to join us, you know. Thanks for the kind words.

We've had some nice remarks today from regulars and newtimers. Glad to see some new commenters.

Lots to think about and lots of work ahead. We have to do more than just talk about it. We've got an election coming and it's time to get the voters mobilized... Calling all community organizers.... let's get this done... YES WE CAN!

Posted by: TBG | September 4, 2008 7:08 PM | Report abuse

I will be accepting faxes of premium chocolate, coffee beans, along with hosta and day lily divisions in exchange for watching tonight so others don't have to.

Who has the over under on POW references?

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 7:16 PM | Report abuse


Hey TEL1, welcome. This is a fun place, isn't it? I first found it around the time Katrina hit and was instantly hooked.

I've had the pleasure of meeting TBG, Son of G, Cassandra, Jack, and Bad Sneakers in person, and they are all great people. Exactly what you would expect from Achenblog.

Posted by: slyness | September 4, 2008 7:19 PM | Report abuse

I'll take a relatively modest 4 mentions, Frosty.

Giants up 7-0 after 11-play 84-yard drive. *sigh* And so it begins.

Wonder what's on the cooking channel?

Take heart, people. I think the picture is gonna look verrrrrry different in about two weeks.

That Palin impersonator is terrific, BTW.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 4, 2008 7:22 PM | Report abuse,8599,1837918,00.html

Posted by: Shiloh | September 4, 2008 7:26 PM | Report abuse

Exhibit A:

Romney: McCain Still Outside the Conservative Mainstream

By Michael D. Shear

ST. PAUL -- During the heat of the Republican primary battle, former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney blasted his rival, Sen. John McCain, as "outside the mainstream of conservative Republican thought."

"But today? Would Romney say that now?

"Actually, yes.

"In an interview this afternoon, the one-time McCain rival said he still stands by his assessment of how he and McCain stack up against each other in terms of their conservative credentials.


"But his assessment of McCain's conservative credentials were the most interesting part of the conversation, because they were so off-message.

"Those comments pointed out differences between he and I on issues. I continue to have those differences with John McCain on those issues," he said. "But during my campaign, and during the debates, I always said I respect John McCain. He's a national hero and a person who is without question qualified to be president of the United States."

He went on: "There were a number of positions that he took that were more liberal, in my opinion, than my positions. And there are probably some vice versa ... I disagree with him on his original vote on the Bush tax cuts. I disagreed with the final version of McCain-Kennedy. I disagreed with him on campaign finance reform. I still do."

"It's amazing how free a short-lister is to talk when they're no longer on the short list."


And this on the very day of McC's acceptance speech. Unbelievable.

Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 4, 2008 7:27 PM | Report abuse

To Josh regarding my 11:32 and your post, Josh:

I was talking about Joe Biden's grandfather, Joe Biden. My source is an Aug. 26 article in the Baltimore Sun by reporter Paul West.,0,4200449.story

The first three grafs:

DENVER - As Joe Biden tells it, there was a time his family was rolling in money.

His grandfather, Joseph H. Biden of Baltimore, was an executive with the American Oil Co. Joe's father spent summers with a cousin, Bill Sheen Jr., whose family estate was in the Baltimore hunt country.

"My dad grew up well polished by gentlemanly pursuits. He would ride to the hounds, drive fast, fly airplanes. He knew good clothes, fine horses, the newest dance steps," Biden wrote in Promises to Keep, a campaign memoir published last year.

So, Josh, Biden's dad worked for Amoco as a sales rep? I'll have to drop by our big box retailer and look at Sen. Biden's autobiography for the informtion that you provided.

Posted by: Loomis | September 4, 2008 7:28 PM | Report abuse

This member of the press, Steve Chapman of the Chicago Tribune, points out that many members of the press, including the Washington Post, got the story wrong about Joe Biden's background--and Joe himself was being truthful.

Chapman does it humorously, too:,0,7175933.column

"But mostly it reflects journalists' weakness for simple, vivid narratives. It's easy to write about a statesman who worked his way up from a log cabin. It's easy to write about a leader who came from great wealth. But someone growing up the son of a sales manager is a bit lacking in color and drama.

"The errors about Biden bring to mind the recent satirical report from humorist Andy Borowitz: 'A member of the U.S. Olympic diving team was disqualified from competition today when it was learned that he did not have a sufficiently compelling human story line to exploit on the NBC telecast of the worldwide sporting event.'"

Posted by: Loomis | September 4, 2008 7:38 PM | Report abuse

TBG-yes we can.

I'd be home watching the convention warm ups right now, if I weren't busy with frivolous community organizing activities. We auctioned off a bunch of fixtures and assorted stuff in the old school building and tonight I'm here letting people in to remove them. We only made about $4,500 (small change in Wasilla, I know) but now we won't have to pay for any disposal and just about everything will either be reused or processed and sold for scrap (green entrepreneurship for those of us who care about our planet and shudder at "drill baby drill").

Catch you later with live commenting.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 7:38 PM | Report abuse

Son of G just sent me this link with the note "Look! We found him!"....

Posted by: TBG | September 4, 2008 7:56 PM | Report abuse

Excellent on all counts, Frosti. I'm looking forward to your play-by-play. And thanks for taking the bullet so I don't have to watch.

Posted by: slyness | September 4, 2008 7:58 PM | Report abuse

Where in the world is Mary Ellen Emmons Baker? Black helicopters?

Posted by: Shiloh | September 4, 2008 8:05 PM | Report abuse

Ooh another DNA person!
Tel1, I'm into replication beginnings, so we're like bookends, no?

This one's for you :-)

Posted by: DNA Girl | September 4, 2008 8:11 PM | Report abuse

This at the end of comments. It explains a lot of the variable population figures:

You may have noticed that there are various numbers circulating for the
population of Wasilla, ranging from my "about 5,000", up to 9,000. The
day Palin’s selection was announced a city official told me that the
current population is about 7,000. The official 2000 census count was
5,460. I have used about 5,000 because Palin was Mayor from 1996 to
2002, and the city was growing rapidly in the mid-90’s.

Anne Kilkenny
August 31, 2008

Posted by: Shiloh | September 4, 2008 8:19 PM | Report abuse

My town has about 13,000 people and we don’t have a mayor. We have selectmen and a town administrator and we are the norm for these parts. Mayor, we don’t need no stinkin’ Mayor! I hope Mudge is right about it all looking very different in a few weeks. I do know that conventions tend to bring out a lot of nutty stuff.

Maggie, back away from the tv, do it now!

I was at lunch today but you probably didn’t see me as I tend to wander along the beach looking for shells and wading. I think I was miles away by late afternoon.

Hope all you watchers are fortified with beverages, strong pain meds and plenty of soft items for throwing.

Posted by: Bad Sneakers | September 4, 2008 8:30 PM | Report abuse

Very cool neurosciency news!

And, why was the neuron sent to the principal's office?

Posted by: DNA Girl | September 4, 2008 8:30 PM | Report abuse

It couldn't control its impulses

Posted by: Anonymous | September 4, 2008 8:32 PM | Report abuse

Oh oh this one's on topic...

What does a neuron say to motivate its friends?

Posted by: DNA Girl | September 4, 2008 8:34 PM | Report abuse

DNA Girl - That was hilarious!!! I'm into environmental science myself (with a focus on microbial physiology and water chemistry currently - that's what a few years of working for DOE does to you). One thing that's never changed about my science - I find bacteria to be fascinating, what they can do still amazes me (though to be honest, the same is true about eukaryotic cells too). I tell my family that I never got over playing with pond scum and mud pies as a kid, and this is the profession that still lets me do both for $$.

Thanks for the warm welcome, all. One thing I've enjoyed about this site is how well-informed (often better informed than me, to be honest) many of the regular commenters are about current scientific stuff.

Posted by: TEL1 | September 4, 2008 8:35 PM | Report abuse

Stay positive!

Sorry, I've got the sillies :-)

Posted by: Anonymous | September 4, 2008 8:36 PM | Report abuse

Just read that Joe Gibbs is speaking tonight at the RNC. I'm surprised, didn't know he was a Republican. Still love Joe, tho.

Doubtful that even Joe will cause fans to switch channels, tonight. Score is 16-7, Giants lead.

Posted by: VintageLady | September 4, 2008 8:38 PM | Report abuse

There were instigators. The neuron wasn't acting alone. It's always the one that gets caught that gets into trouble.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 4, 2008 8:39 PM | Report abuse

OMG they're showing a video on 9/11.

Posted by: DNA Girl | September 4, 2008 8:41 PM | Report abuse

Iran was responsible for 9/11 according to the Republicans.

Posted by: Boko999 | September 4, 2008 8:45 PM | Report abuse

Oh... I'm SOoooo glad you guys are doing the watchin' for me. I really appreciate it. THANKS!

Posted by: TBG | September 4, 2008 8:47 PM | Report abuse

Gibbs is using "God's game plan" as his sales pitch (personal testimony) for the Republican political game plan.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 4, 2008 8:52 PM | Report abuse

Whew, just got into my viewing uniform (nightclothes) and woofed down a cheddar brat, no moose available. Caught the Oklahoma Congresswoman's speech, but not her name. I see they are laying the groundwork so that McCain/Palin do not have to know the difference between Shiite and Sunni, or have any specific recall of what country is where or who did what to whom. Just kill all of "evil radical Islam" and let God sort 'em out."

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 8:56 PM | Report abuse

Scary, find myself agreeing with David Brooks these past few nights. He says it is future elections when being a veteran will matter, that there are lots of Iraq war vets now and they are "assertive, accomplished, and not your traditional Republicans or Democrats." I think he nailed that one.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 8:58 PM | Report abuse

After listening to the delegate vote count last night I realized that the RNC has significantly fewer delegates. But after watching the crowd during musical interludes, I concluded that pound for pound the RNC is about equal to the DNC.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 4, 2008 9:00 PM | Report abuse

I know I totally missed comments on Palin's couture and coiffure last night and CP had to carry that load. I'll try to do better tonight.

I'm watching PBS and Ray Suarez looks like he's lost about 15 pounds.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 9:01 PM | Report abuse

Is anyone watching the Obama-O'Reilly opera?

This guy at the Guardian is live blogging it:

Posted by: DNA Girl | September 4, 2008 9:01 PM | Report abuse

Lindsey Graham up. Surge working. Attacking Obama and MoveOn. Doesn't say we shouldn't have been there in the first place.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 4, 2008 9:03 PM | Report abuse

I had heard Wolf Blitzer promo the 9/11 video stating it will be controversial - that was all I needed to turn the channel.

Repulican/Conservative mantra when all else fails scare the crap out of people.

Posted by: dmd | September 4, 2008 9:04 PM | Report abuse

Graham has that same sneering and snarky look when talking about Obama. (He probably thinks Obama is "uppity"). I think the look is practiced by Repubs. Palin used it a lot. Graham ended. Palin slide show on screen.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 4, 2008 9:10 PM | Report abuse

Okay. The phone rang with birthday wishes from friends. They all said, "don't do it," and because I'm as oppositional as all get out, I've turned to MSNBC to give more perspective to Frostie's accounts.

I just saw "mother, moosehunter, maverick." I may frow up.

Posted by: Maggie O'D | September 4, 2008 9:11 PM | Report abuse

Mother, moose-hunter, maverick....mayor, Governor. What? They ran out of alliteration juice. (A video on Palin that got scrubbed last night)

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 9:11 PM | Report abuse

Did you notice that they said "defeated a democrat governor"?

Posted by: Maggie O'D | September 4, 2008 9:14 PM | Report abuse

Love that pic TBG!

I'm not going to watch anything at all tonight because my wife and I just got back from "back-to-school-night" at our daughter's middle school. This is always exhausting. The teachers seem so energetic. So young. So optimistic. But then, the year has just begun.

Going to go hide with the bunnies. I'm reading "Paris 1919: Six Months that Changed the World" on the Treaty of Versailles.

So far, there has been no mention of moose.

Posted by: RD Padouk | September 4, 2008 9:16 PM | Report abuse

Here comes Joe Palooka a/k/a Tom Ridge. Cut to commercial. First commercial sponsored by "Divided We Fail." What's that about?

Posted by: Maggie O'D | September 4, 2008 9:16 PM | Report abuse

Tom Ridge playing fear card.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 4, 2008 9:20 PM | Report abuse

M O'D, glad you came on board, 'cos I must leave. Couldn't do it last night, tried tonight, but I have to go throw up after watching Lindsey Graham.

Please. FSM. let. me. make. it. to. the....oop!

Posted by: DNA Girl | September 4, 2008 9:21 PM | Report abuse

How 'bout Olbermann's comment that the lengthy 9/11 video was "inappropriate" and that if the Dems had shown something similar, the Republicans would be screaming the same -- inappropriate.

The Palin video just made me want to gag.

Actually, this whole convention makes me want to gag.

In fact, I bet I could wash down an entire plate of raw moose testicles (mooshi?) with a tall glass of camphor oil and have less of a gag reflex than I'm getting right now.

Posted by: martooni | September 4, 2008 9:21 PM | Report abuse

Maggie this is for you, during the beach party today I ambled off to take some pictures, there is water, a few boats, lots of garden pictures, porches and a Moose.

Do yourself a favour do not turn on the TV, even though I will miss your very funny comments.

Posted by: dmd | September 4, 2008 9:23 PM | Report abuse

Ridge was kind of lackluster.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 4, 2008 9:27 PM | Report abuse

Agreed, I don't think veterans even today are your "typical Republican or Democrats".

That reminds me, our troops always need our aid for the essentials (and thanks to Obama for his troop aid bills).

It looks like there are package parties throughout Minnesota every month.

Posted by: Wilbrod | September 4, 2008 9:29 PM | Report abuse

How interesting. MSNBC has shown nothing of Tom Ridge's speech, except in sotto voce, talked over by my hero (NOT!) Chris Mathews and Keith Olbermann.

Here comes Cindy McCain. (In video, in case she slips a viocodan)* I'm prepared to hate her in advance of anything she may say.

* I AM mean.

Posted by: Maggie O'D | September 4, 2008 9:29 PM | Report abuse

Those are beautiful pics, dmd.

Loved the moose.

Posted by: RD Padouk | September 4, 2008 9:30 PM | Report abuse

Hensley Beer and Cindy Lou slide show.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 4, 2008 9:30 PM | Report abuse

Cindy McCain's not speaking live? That's rather cowardly, I'd say if I were saying.

Loved the photos, dmd. Thanks for sharing!

Posted by: slyness | September 4, 2008 9:31 PM | Report abuse

My reception to msnbc is bad, that's a shame as I do like Tom Brokaw. Will, watch Cindy McCain's video on weta.

Posted by: VintageLady | September 4, 2008 9:31 PM | Report abuse

Oh great... now it's Cindy Lou's video intro to her speech.

I should probably go grab a bucket now.

Posted by: martooni | September 4, 2008 9:32 PM | Report abuse

Ooops. Slipped right over McCain's first marriage. And the fact that some say he took out the marriage license before he actually divorced.

Posted by: Maggie O'D | September 4, 2008 9:33 PM | Report abuse

Sounds like Cindy is a community organizer.


Posted by: VintageLady | September 4, 2008 9:35 PM | Report abuse

Phone call from Mr. F so I missed most of Tom Ridge, sorry folks.

Antiwar demonstrators occupied a bridge briefly near downtown St. Paul this evening.

Cindy video, what can I say, there was just an awkward segue from "her father" as inspiration with a picture of Cindy and John head to head, wherein he looks like her father.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 9:35 PM | Report abuse

John and Cindy met at a cocktail party where they both lied about their age. And he about his marital status. What a tender love story.

Posted by: yellojkt | September 4, 2008 9:35 PM | Report abuse

Cindy on stage backed up by sons and family.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 4, 2008 9:36 PM | Report abuse


Happy Birthday!

Now as to your television habits tonight, I suggest you switch over to channel 4. They are showing a Redskins game. I know you are a big football fan, so convince yourself that all the stations in this area are showing this game. That will convince you to turn the television off.

The other option is to switch over to WHUT. They are showing a travel program on Mozart in Salzburg, Austria.

Either option will be better than what is happening in St. Paul. Even if you don't watch either one.

Posted by: pj | September 4, 2008 9:37 PM | Report abuse

Love her suit, hair is kind of messy tho.

Posted by: VintageLady | September 4, 2008 9:37 PM | Report abuse

Who is dressing these Republic women tonight? Shiny fabrics really are better left to the pageant circuit. I'll have to ask yello if this hair is best described as "porn star" or what.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 9:39 PM | Report abuse

Maggie, careful! I'm watching the Us Open - Roddick is not doing well. Federer won earlier today - yay.

I won't be able to stomach the convention tonight, but I may watch O'bama take on O'Reilly. If I can figure out when it's on here...

Posted by: mostlylurking | September 4, 2008 9:39 PM | Report abuse

Did anyone else see the costs for the outfit Cindy wore two nights ago, with jewels (3 karat earrings) estimated $300,000 total, 20,000 if the earrings were not real.

But is not like they are elite or anything!

Posted by: dmd | September 4, 2008 9:39 PM | Report abuse

Sarah Palin: Tina Fey
Cindy McCain: Amy Poehler

Posted by: yellojkt | September 4, 2008 9:39 PM | Report abuse

I'm confused. I thought that Naval Academy students were never allowed to leave the grounds without their uniforms. Living here in Annapolis, I'm used to seeing Midshipmen everywhere, in the mall, at the movies, in restaurants, the big box of tools, and books, proudly in their uniforms. So why is Jack there without his?

Sorry. Can't be amusing here tonight. I'm getting scared.

Posted by: Msggie O'D | September 4, 2008 9:40 PM | Report abuse

Sorry VL, have to disagree with the suit. The color suits her, but I hate the sheen.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 9:40 PM | Report abuse

Our National DNA?

Abraham Lincoln is there, or at least his hand on Cindy's shoulder.

Posted by: VintageLady | September 4, 2008 9:42 PM | Report abuse

Maggie-he was probably not allowed to wear it so as not to appear that the USNA was officially endorsing dad.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 9:42 PM | Report abuse

Like I would know. It does look a little thin and brittle. Too much peroxide will do that.

Posted by: yellojkt | September 4, 2008 9:43 PM | Report abuse

"Women have always sought a husband who would make a good father, and I saw that when John was married to..." Sorry, having trouble sticking with her script.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 9:44 PM | Report abuse

"It's good to have a woman's hand on the wheel as well?"

Is she inviting Palin to join a menage a trois with her and John?


Posted by: martooni | September 4, 2008 9:45 PM | Report abuse

I didn't think the $300,000 (!) dress was particularly flattering to Cindy, either. And I hated the shade of green that she had on last night, and the bow. Not that I should talk about fashion. But holy cow, that's a lot of moolah for a dress. I thought she was looking kind of old and tired - she's had a lot of health problems for a relatively young woman. Not that I could tell you how old she is, except she's a lot younger than John.

I of course was referring the "US" Open tennis, earlier...

Isn't lackluster normal for Tom Ridge?

Posted by: mostlylurking | September 4, 2008 9:46 PM | Report abuse

"Math is hard; let's go shopping," said Barbie. I finally do the math. John is 17 years older than Cindy Lou.

Posted by: Maggie O'D | September 4, 2008 9:46 PM | Report abuse

Palin looks a little uncomfortable tonight.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 9:46 PM | Report abuse

Gotta love it:

Posted by: slyness | September 4, 2008 9:49 PM | Report abuse

The reps may say what they like about the spectacle of Obama's acceptance speech, but every time the camera pans to the delegates at the Xcel the empty seats make it look like no one showed.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 9:49 PM | Report abuse

I usually watch lots of both conventions, but I cannot bring myself to watch tonight.
The hubby and son dvr'ed the Redskins game as my son had to work 'til 9p, so I'm listening to lots of screaming right now...I guess it didn't go well?
I just poured myself a nice glass of chardonnay and I'm going to surf a little while. But, that's probably going to make me want to throw something too.

Posted by: Kim | September 4, 2008 9:51 PM | Report abuse

"It was my pleasure to work with the men and women of the American Medical Team...until I started stealing meds." Ooops, I did it again! (tune cootie brought to you by Cindy's hair)

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 9:52 PM | Report abuse

So it's not SRO at the Xcel, Frosti? That's amazing.

Posted by: slyness | September 4, 2008 9:52 PM | Report abuse

I was part of those millions, slyness. I've bought several t-shirts and bumper stickers, but I got so cranky about Palin's speech last night that I just hit the donate button.

Posted by: Kim | September 4, 2008 9:53 PM | Report abuse

Missed cue: Cindy just told Ernestine, from Rwanda to stand up. Ernestine had already been standing since Cindy's first reference. Also mangled line: Ernestine's family wreaked havoc all around them (I'll give her a free SCC there).

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 9:54 PM | Report abuse

When frostsis #1 and I were tweens we used climb on the picnic table for post BBQ variety shows. Usually a show tune or two, then a fake commercial "Here we are with the late great Vince Lombardi" and always finished with an interview with Miss Georgia. Cindy would have fit right in with that extended microphone holding love my husband, love my country, mention Mother Teresa a couple times performance.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 9:58 PM | Report abuse

Cindy actually did better than I thought she would. More than that I cannot say.

I do love Chris Mathews saying that there's a massive difference between the two parties. Well, duh.

Individual charity rather than governmental policy.

Dear God, they're playing "Johnny Be Good."

Posted by: Maggie O'D | September 4, 2008 9:58 PM | Report abuse

Now they're playing "Celebration Now, Come On."

Excuse me while I rush to the little girls' room.

Posted by: Maggie O'D | September 4, 2008 10:00 PM | Report abuse

I enjoyed watching Cindy, first time I have seen her speak. Her devotion "I have loved him with all my heart" was hard to listen to, but she certainly gave a good performance as devoted wife and mother and spread it on thick.

Michelle stands hands/head above Cindy in introducing her husband.

Posted by: VintageLady | September 4, 2008 10:02 PM | Report abuse

Thank God they reminded us in the first sentence of the video that John was a POW.

Posted by: martooni | September 4, 2008 10:05 PM | Report abuse

Details (estimates?) on the $300,000 outfit, I understand the need to look good, but in difficult economic times this just seems so over the top. Especially for an ugly stepford wife type dress.

Posted by: dmd | September 4, 2008 10:06 PM | Report abuse

Good night all, won't be watching "the rest of the show", I'm sleepy.

Posted by: VintageLady | September 4, 2008 10:06 PM | Report abuse

For any of you emerging from a coma, they are introducing John McCain the POW. Did you get that, he was a POW?

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 10:06 PM | Report abuse

"honest and razor sharp effective" Way to deal with Keating and age questions in one swell foop.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 10:10 PM | Report abuse

That community organizer Mother Teresa gets another mention.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 10:11 PM | Report abuse

Wow! Great video. So far. No really; it's a great video. I may have to vote for him. Such is the power of film. "A man who found his strength in a dank cell far from America."

Posted by: Maggie O'D | September 4, 2008 10:12 PM | Report abuse

I had nearly forgotten, Martooni. But how long was he a POW for? FIVE AND A HALF YEARS!

"He came back from the war a man on the prowl for a younger, thinner, richer wife."

Posted by: yellojkt | September 4, 2008 10:12 PM | Report abuse

Fred Thompson narrating what I believe is a quote from a McCain book, the arena is dark, spotlight on McCain. No podium in sight. Waving flag video on screen behind him. Podium rises from the floor.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 10:14 PM | Report abuse

A POW? Really? I never knew!


That gold dress Cindy had on in the photo with Laura is absolutely hideous. $280,000 in diamond earrings - the cost of a nice house in this neck of the woods.

Posted by: slyness | September 4, 2008 10:14 PM | Report abuse

yello-you're up on pop culture in a surprisingly diverse set of circumstances. Just what did that podium rising from the floor in front f a 72 year old man look like to you? With the sound off I think this could be a smiling Bob commercial.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 10:16 PM | Report abuse

Who let these people in. The camera just caught someone in the cheap seats with a "you can't win an occupation sign" now they've flipped it to "McCain votes against vets." No sign of a security escort yet.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 10:17 PM | Report abuse

Someone standing above convention floor with sign reading 'McCAIN VOTES AGAINST VETS"

Posted by: Shiloh | September 4, 2008 10:18 PM | Report abuse

What? 6.5 minutes into his speech, and he mentions 9/11. Meh.

Posted by: Maggie O'D | September 4, 2008 10:18 PM | Report abuse

Some in the crowd seem to be aware of the sign, and the holder's t-shirt message. guy in baseball cap holding ear speaking into cuff.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 10:18 PM | Report abuse

Missed the Levitra® podium rise. What is with the green background? Didn't learn from the last time he gave an acceptance speech?

Posted by: yellojkt | September 4, 2008 10:19 PM | Report abuse

The green appears to be corn waving in a breeze when the camera pulls out to show the whole screen. Did someone forget he already has the votes of the people in the hall and this needs to look good on TV? In close ups the green looked like mildew, or a mistake.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 10:23 PM | Report abuse

"My friends"
Take a drink.

Posted by: yellojkt | September 4, 2008 10:23 PM | Report abuse

Came back to try once more.

Ahh! Splotchy yellow green background! Whadda I got to do, turn off all my senses to bear this?

Gotta. go. again....oop.

Posted by: DNA Girl | September 4, 2008 10:23 PM | Report abuse

Demonstration on the floor. People being bodily removed.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 4, 2008 10:24 PM | Report abuse

Disruption of unknown origin-he handles it well. Crowd starts chanting "USA" at odd moments, must be what they were told to do if protesters infiltrated. Second time around he seems a bit less poised.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 10:25 PM | Report abuse

McCain: "Please don't be disturbed by the ground noise and the static."

Posted by: Shiloh | September 4, 2008 10:25 PM | Report abuse

Gracious remarks about Obama. "I know that these are tough times for many of you." Drowned out by boos, and chants of USA, USA, . Disgusting.
"Please don't be diverted by the ground noise and the static." More conciliating words, then more, and insistant, USA,USA.
More than disgusting.

Posted by: Maggie O'D | September 4, 2008 10:26 PM | Report abuse

Introducing the VP candidate so we can get to know her as he does, or justifying the choice, gentle readers you decide.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 10:27 PM | Report abuse

Maggie-good point, that was gracious.

Incumbent party runs on change. Talk about being fortunate Cheney was needed in Georgia and Gustav was so well timed.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 10:29 PM | Report abuse

Somebody over in Marc Fisher's chat today observed that at the DNC, people cheered but at tne RNC, people are booing at points. Interesting, what does that say about the different points of view of the two parties?

Posted by: slyness | September 4, 2008 10:30 PM | Report abuse

Am watching Gamecocks vs Comodores probably just as entertaining.

Washington looked slow and only looked good when running the 2 minute drill and then when they needed to run it they were still in normal offense mode. I thought that is what the preseason is for,to work on that stuff.

Posted by: greenwithenvy | September 4, 2008 10:32 PM | Report abuse

Cindy McCain = Angela Lansbury

Did anyone notice Cindy McCain snup Palin when Palin leaned over to trade a confidence, Cindy stared straight ahead. Palin retreated into herself. The dynamic has been defined.

Did McCain write his own speech? It's terrible. He's reminding me of that admiral, Perot's running mate.

Posted by: rhy | September 4, 2008 10:32 PM | Report abuse

Funny how non-snarky we are tonight.

Oh golly, he just said, "when the pundints said.."

Posted by: Maggie O'D | September 4, 2008 10:32 PM | Report abuse

That's an awful lot of gold on a broad, dmd. I like the fabric (it'd look nice on me, in smaller doses and better styles)...

But,the designer who thought it should be used to make women into glitzy artifical christmas trees should be shot.

I'm sorry, he's probably looking at it right now and saying "I dreamt of this being on a much younger and more smoky brunette who was also wearing black pants" or something like that.

On Cindy, it looks like a golden raincoat designed for a shorter, wider woman. I like the upturned V neck. Isn't that what evil witches and such always wear in Disney movies, only in black?

That dress does create suspense, though... Will she flash the audience or not?

Posted by: Wilbrod | September 4, 2008 10:32 PM | Report abuse

ehy-"who am I, and why am I here?" That would be Stockdale I believe.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 10:34 PM | Report abuse

I think Johnny Be Good is McCain's campaign theme song - seems a bit odd, doesn't it? I mean, era-wise.

Roddick won the 3rd set, even in the 4th, last I checked.

Posted by: mostlylurking | September 4, 2008 10:35 PM | Report abuse

Every time the camera pans the audience people are looking around like something troubling is going on, or yawning.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 10:35 PM | Report abuse

I am thankful that they let John take off the RNC choke chain for his speech. Wouldn't be proper.

Posted by: bill everything | September 4, 2008 10:36 PM | Report abuse

You're making it sound like the media's being biased, Frosti.

Posted by: slyness | September 4, 2008 10:37 PM | Report abuse

Glad I didn't have a mouthful of tea when I read your last line Wilbrod.

If Palin is your American Idol, apparently someone is trying to import Barack Obama to our country.

Posted by: dmd | September 4, 2008 10:38 PM | Report abuse

Stockdale was a POW for nine years. Unfortunately he died in 2005.

Posted by: yellojkt | September 4, 2008 10:38 PM | Report abuse

I don't think they know what they are applauding when McaCain said we "lost their trust," meaning Americans.

Posted by: Maggie O'D | September 4, 2008 10:38 PM | Report abuse

government that wants you to make more decisions for yourself (except those pesky, private reproductive ones)

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 10:39 PM | Report abuse

Slyess-how so? (re your 10:37)

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 10:42 PM | Report abuse

McCain said: "Help bad teachers find another line of work." Sarah Palin is probably already drawing up lists of people to fire.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 4, 2008 10:44 PM | Report abuse

I like that line, "Education is the civil rights of the ...."

I truly believe that. (Does that make me a repuglican?)

Posted by: Maggie O'D | September 4, 2008 10:44 PM | Report abuse

Oh! Focusing on the fact that all is not fabulously well at the Xcel Center.

Posted by: slyness | September 4, 2008 10:45 PM | Report abuse

Thank goodness... only 10 minutes or so until John Stewart comes on.

Posted by: martooni | September 4, 2008 10:46 PM | Report abuse

"Drill, baby, drill."

Posted by: Maggie O'D | September 4, 2008 10:46 PM | Report abuse

Is it just me or does he seem to have lost focus, some facial expressions don't seem to be matching the words at this point.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 10:47 PM | Report abuse

Frostie, zzzzzzzz. I'm truly having a hard time staying awake. Are you?

Posted by: Maggie O'D | September 4, 2008 10:50 PM | Report abuse

Unfortunately, the unrulyness casts a negative light on Democrats for not having the civility to let the man speak.

Posted by: rhy | September 4, 2008 10:50 PM | Report abuse

thanks Slyness, I should have been able to figure that out but this week has been a big brain cell killer for me. I don't know what the commercial networks are doing but PBS did not comment on the signs or commotion earlier. They seem to be just panning the crowds during applause lines.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 10:50 PM | Report abuse

"I will lower your taxes by making you take a lower paying job."

****Crowd goes wild.****

And another "my friends". How many are we up to?

Posted by: yellojkt | September 4, 2008 10:51 PM | Report abuse

Maggie-it is a yawner.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 10:53 PM | Report abuse

Martooni, thanks for that blessed reminder! Jon Stewart it is...

Posted by: Wilbrod | September 4, 2008 10:54 PM | Report abuse

Far fewer "my friends" than usual Yello. I didn't keep a count because it took quite a while for him to say it the 1st time.

A little off topic-every time I hear reps claim Palin is a good pick for VP I can't help think "there is someone who expects McCain to lose and wants a clear path for the '12 campaign."

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 10:55 PM | Report abuse

OMG, we are getting the POW/Road to Damascus story.

Posted by: yellojkt | September 4, 2008 10:56 PM | Report abuse

It's PBS doing that? Wow.

I'll admit my comment was pretty vague, Frosti. You've had a brutally busy week by your own admission, and I should have been more clear. I apologize.

Posted by: slyness | September 4, 2008 10:57 PM | Report abuse

The vets seem pretty lukewarm to the one millionth telling of his heroic tale.

Posted by: rhy | September 4, 2008 10:59 PM | Report abuse

omg! Here comes the pathos, and the "they broke me." I will weep.

Posted by: Maggie O'd | September 4, 2008 11:00 PM | Report abuse

Okay, folks, I'm hanging it up too. Sleep well, and I'll catch up in the morning.

Posted by: slyness | September 4, 2008 11:01 PM | Report abuse

No apologies necessary Slyness, it was a busy week but living up to my vow to watch as much of the RNC as possible has been harder than I expected. This listening to opposing viewpoints grown up behavior is tough. a community organizer! (I paraphrase, he's telling people to "serve a cause greater than yourself.")

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 11:03 PM | Report abuse

"...stand up, stand up and fight" a rousing finish but not at all connected to what preceded it.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 11:05 PM | Report abuse

Nothing will bring a greater comfort than fighting for a greater cause than yourself. (paraphrasing again.)

Sounds like community organizing to me.

Followed by country music singing "Raising McCain)

Posted by: Maggie O'D | September 4, 2008 11:05 PM | Report abuse

Toodles boodle. Stewart just showed the most umbrage creating bits of Rudy and Palin from last night "to all you people trying to make a difference in your communities eff are a thousand points of bs." Too bad I'll never manage to stay awake for the whole show.

Posted by: frostbitten | September 4, 2008 11:11 PM | Report abuse

I thought the third try might be the charm.......noooooo!!!

Now there are green and yellow fireworks behind him...oooopp!

Posted by: DNA Girl | September 4, 2008 11:14 PM | Report abuse

Why does everything have to be a fight with these people.

Posted by: Boko999 | September 4, 2008 11:20 PM | Report abuse

I'm so sorry, Boodlings, but there was so little to snark or umbrudge* about the speeches tonight. Too dull; too predictable.

*As you may remember, I cannot, for the life of me, spell 'umbrige'.

Posted by: Maggie O'D | September 4, 2008 11:24 PM | Report abuse

Ha, ha - that would be umbrage. We need a mnemonic for it - like "we are weird". Let's see - it ends in "rage" - maybe that would work.

So why is Chris Mathews predicting McCain will be ahead in the polls? Just his usual blather? The Palin factor? Wonder what Ann and Nancy Wilson think about Barracuda being played...

Best part - seeing Andrea Mitchell getting buried in balloons, but talking all the while.

Roddick lost - Djokovic will play Federer in the semi-final.

Posted by: mostlylurking | September 4, 2008 11:51 PM | Report abuse

New polls in

Posted by: Jumper | September 4, 2008 11:58 PM | Report abuse

Friday evening Cheech and Chong will kick off their 'Light Up America' tour from the National Arts Centre beside the World Heritage Rideau Canal (it's very nice though not Amerikee).

You'd think Tommy would be very aware where the border is; I know I am. Oh well.

The long darkness is finally lifting off the land. Rejuice!

Posted by: Boko999 | September 5, 2008 12:06 AM | Report abuse

Goodnight, Chet; goodnight, David.

Posted by: Maggie O'D | September 5, 2008 12:10 AM | Report abuse

I think Dana Carvey could do a dynamite impression of Sarah Palin - after seeing yet another clip of her, the Church Lady came to mind.

Posted by: mostlylurking | September 5, 2008 1:09 AM | Report abuse

Belated happy birthday to Maggie and Scotty. And a belated happy anniversary to VL.

You guys with the RNC comments are so funny.

Posted by: rainforest | September 5, 2008 1:17 AM | Report abuse

Tom Shales wrote what I think is a good review of the McCain speech (bear in mind I have not actually watched the speech, only the comments here on and on MSNBC and CNN afterwards):

Posted by: mostlylurking | September 5, 2008 1:21 AM | Report abuse

Mostly, ha! Probably so. I caught Stephen Colbert and he interviewed Ron Paul who came off quite well, and that's not easy in a Colbert interview even when he has kid gloves on. "So you're shooting the flood..."
And then Ron Paul explains that people weren't allowed to defend their property from the looters. Truthfully, in a sentence, he made me remember why I do like the libertarian wing of the Republican party, and why I loathe what Bush and the old guard ever since Nixon have done to the Republican party (talk about anti-liberty).

Error in '08!

Posted by: Wilbrod | September 5, 2008 1:35 AM | Report abuse

Faxing USD to frosti in appreciation of her sacrifice.

Huffpost is reporting (with video) that Ridge referenced John Bush, er, John McCain.

Also from Huffpost, a welcome opinion on why embracing Palin should force the far Christian right to shut up about teen pregnancy. Do you think they'll send flowers to Jamie Lynn Spears? (JLS sent a baby gift to Bristol, xoxo)

Posted by: dbG | September 5, 2008 2:36 AM | Report abuse

Sorry, is the accepted abbreviation HUFFPO or HUFFPOST?

As I said, it's become like a soap opera to me (with possible dire effects, to be sure).

Posted by: dbG | September 5, 2008 2:37 AM | Report abuse

They Raise Children, Pray and Support Palin

It's beginning to sound a lot like Lake Woebegone. Where's Garrison?

Posted by: Shiloh | September 5, 2008 4:04 AM | Report abuse

The Lake Wobegon (sp corrected) effect designates

the human tendency to overestimate one's achievements and capabilities in relation to others

A cognitive bias.

It is named for the fictional town of Lake Wobegon from the radio series A Prairie Home Companion, where, according to the presenter, Garrison Keillor, "all the women are strong, all the men are good-looking, and all the children are above average."

Posted by: Shiloh | September 5, 2008 4:11 AM | Report abuse

Some excerpts from an old but good analysis:

We’re Not in Lake Wobegon Anymore

The party of Lincoln and Liberty was transmogrified into the party of hairy-backed swamp developers and corporate shills, faith-based economists, fundamentalist bullies with Bibles, Christians of convenience, freelance racists, misanthropic frat boys, shrieking midgets of AM radio, tax cheats, nihilists in golf pants, brownshirts in pinstripes, sweatshop tycoons, hacks, fakirs, aggressive dorks, Lamborghini libertarians, people who believe Neil Armstrong’s moonwalk was filmed in Roswell, New Mexico, little honkers out to diminish the rest of us, Newt’s evil spawn and their Etch-A-Sketch president, a dull and rigid man suspicious of the free flow of information and of secular institutions, whose philosophy is a jumble of badly sutured body parts trying to walk. Republicans: The No.1 reason the rest of the world thinks we’re deaf, dumb and dangerous

Our beloved land has been fogged with fear—fear, the greatest political strategy ever. An ominous silence, distant sirens, a drumbeat of whispered warnings and alarms to keep the public uneasy and silence the opposition. And in a time of vague fear, you can appoint bullet-brained judges, strip the bark off the Constitution, eviscerate federal regulatory agencies, bring public education to a standstill, stupefy the press, lavish gorgeous tax breaks on the rich.

Dante said that the hottest place in Hell is reserved for those who in time of crisis remain neutral, so I have spoken my piece, and thank you, dear reader. It’s a beautiful world, rain or shine, and there is more to life than winning.

-Garrison Keillor, 2004

Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose. (The more things change, the more they stay the same).

~Alphonse Karr, Les Guepes 1849

Posted by: Shiloh | September 5, 2008 4:46 AM | Report abuse

I can't resist. Would that these were real campaign posters.

Posted by: dbG | September 5, 2008 4:50 AM | Report abuse

Goodmorning! Fell asleep early last night, the first week of school for my kids has been exhausting for the whole family. Last thing I remember was my 1st grader reading me a bedtime story, didn't catch the ending.

Thanks to those who endured the sacrifice and posted the visuals and running commentary of the RNC. sounds like the speeches were worthy of constant eye rolling last night, but fell a little short of projectile saliva.

Posted by: DandyLion | September 5, 2008 4:53 AM | Report abuse

Noisy rain squalls from Tropical Storm Hanna are not conductive to falling asleep.

Jack Abramoff is going to prison. I wonder whether pardons will be forthcoming in January for him and those like him. It's time to check out Dante--by November US voters will believe we'll have abundant cheap gas for our snowmobiles in 2009 thanks to drilling.

Posted by: Dave of the Coonties | September 5, 2008 5:03 AM | Report abuse

McCain Vows to End ‘Partisan Rancor,’ Seizing Theme of Change From Rival

This bears repeating:

The more things change, the more they stay the same.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 5, 2008 5:06 AM | Report abuse


Bunker down, boodlers.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 5, 2008 5:14 AM | Report abuse

The NHC longer term projections show HURRICANE IKE (now Category 3) heading for Miami/Dade, FL and TS
JOSEPHINE bearing towards Bermuda.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 5, 2008 5:20 AM | Report abuse

Last comment for the morning.

I forget.

Did Ms. Palin mention being a 1983 Fur Rendezvous Princess as one of her qualifications for VP?

Posted by: dbG | September 5, 2008 5:20 AM | Report abuse

DandyLion at 4:53 a.m.-

"Last thing I remember was my 1st grader reading me a bedtime story, didn't catch the ending."

Probably a fairy tale ending:

And the Fur Princess and the POW went home and lived happily ever after in Alaska and Arizona. The End.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 5, 2008 5:37 AM | Report abuse

'Morning, Boodle.

Watched the Redskins last night, then an interesting old Indy movie called "Fall," which I kinda liked. Much, much better for the blood pressure than watching Moose and Squirrel convention.

We now need two or three days of relative peace and quiet, and then the polls will begin to suggest how the country has reacted to all this mishegas. I'm predicting an 8-point Obama lead (in most polls except Zogby, who can't ever get anything right anyway).

Somebody explain to me how McC et al are going to "end partisan rancor"? When exactly was that supposed to happen?

And here's an observation: in that entire convention you only heard the word "torture" applied to one person. Not. One. Single. Word. About. It. Re: Gitmo, Waterboarding, etc.

No references to waterboarding whatsoever.


Posted by: Curmudgeon | September 5, 2008 6:06 AM | Report abuse

We had a very rainy night here in South Florida, punctuated at our house by a midnight visit from a large raccoon to our screened-in porch, looking for refuge from the storm I guess, but I sent him on his way: this is not a wildlife shelter, it's human habitat, sorry.

The storm is interfering with my lifestyle, no biking or jogging for me today. But it will not stop us from leaving for vacation tomorrow to spend a week on a west Florida beach. If it rains we will just play more Scrabble and read more books and work more jigsaw puzzles. I expect to have a relaxing week and hope to take some pictures that are worth sharing.

Thanks everybody for the RNC commentary. I have no desire to watch any of it, but it's good to have some clues as to what occurred.

Posted by: kbertocci | September 5, 2008 6:07 AM | Report abuse

Point taken on torture. I wishfully thought McCain would repudiate American torture practices in his speech, there was opportunity, but he left it unsaid and that speaks volumes.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 5, 2008 6:23 AM | Report abuse

I watched bits and ends of the football too Mudge. The RS didn't do that bad. Domestic chores and Giulani fatigue made me ignore the convention. It has become pretty clear McC ghas taken a deep draft of the GOP juice.
Weird weather here too, feels like summer temperature wise but it's dark like in the fall .

Posted by: shrieking denizen | September 5, 2008 6:28 AM | Report abuse

Banal. Insipid. Uneven.

I'm still searching for adjectives. He stole whole swaths of the Democratic platform and twisted them to his needs. I'm not sure who the speech was for. It befuddled the rather sparse convention crowd in a lot of places.

Posted by: yellojkt | September 5, 2008 7:07 AM | Report abuse

My wife works for the Lake Wobegon School District. Just ask the parents.

Posted by: yellojkt | September 5, 2008 7:09 AM | Report abuse

According to TPM, the building that was behind McCain for part of his speech was the Walter Reed Middle School in North Hollywood, CA. It is posited that the people responsible for creating these backgrounds thought they had a picture of Walter Reed Hospital. If true, it’s a great example of their manipulation gone wrong. Keep it up guys!

Humid morning here and remnants of Hanna due here sometime tomorrow. I have to get out and find fabric for flowergirl dresses no matter what. Time is short and I’m trying not to panic - yet.

Posted by: Bad Sneakers | September 5, 2008 7:13 AM | Report abuse

Good morning, Boodle!
Still watching the six o'clock position.

Posted by: Brag | September 5, 2008 7:16 AM | Report abuse

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

Good morning, friends. I am late this morning getting here, but have been up for awhile. I have a date with that laundry room that I don't feel up to keeping, and I am seriously thinking about avoiding it all together. I'm still tired from Wednesday.

I had the g-girl and her little friend yesterday, and what little energy I had left, those two quickly consumed. They were literally all over the place.

As for the offensive comments about community organizer, I suspect that is grounded in race and poverty. Repubs do that all the time, just not with poor people and African-Americans. You'd think they would apologize for the lack of African-Americans in their party and conventions, but one doesn't hear a peep out of them concerning that one-sided situation. Why?

Yello, check your email.

K-guy, so glad to hear from you. I hope all is well with you and family.


Wow, a lipstick wearing pitbull? That's tough, and too tough for me. Seems to be right up your alley.

Have a great day, folks. The storm is on the way. Clouds are gathering already. It was such a beautiful day yesterday. A little on the warm side, but, oh, so, pretty. Take care those of you that live in the path of the storm.

Slyness, Martooni, Mudge, Scotty, good morning to you, and to all.*waving*

Time to swim.

Posted by: cassandra s | September 5, 2008 7:36 AM | Report abuse

I did not get a chance to read all the comments, will try to do that later today.

And Slyness, the mayor of Hamlet, and the President of the NAACP have agreed to speak at the Outreach Ministry on the challenges facing our students here. I hope they can do that. Both will be speaking at different times. Our listening audience is mostly older people, but sometimes grandmothers and grandfathers, aunts, uncles, can steer young people to the right paths. I think calmer heads will prevail, at least that's my prayer.

Posted by: cassandra s | September 5, 2008 7:44 AM | Report abuse

Posting now, will backboodle during office hours. Here are my rhetoric-of-appearance coments.

The gold-salmon tie of McCain fits with Cindy's salmon-tangerine sleeveless shirt waist dress. This color is nearly complimentary -- opposite on the color wheel -- to the turquoise-steel blue jacket also worn. I do not think this accidental.

I am still thinking about the green dress of Wednesday. Knit is very comfortable but this frock is not Land's End easy. Pearls. Pearls. Pearls: back! Channeling Jackie K, Barbara Bush, and Wilma Flintstone at the same time. But, these did not come from Target. Think Gumps in San Francisco.

I keep thinking that this election is the year of the dress, but we have yet to see Sarah Palin in a dress. Dresses are not as comfortable UNLESS they fit exactly. Torso length is the most troublesome of measurements; dresses, unlike separates, are not flexible with this unforgiving dimension.

Perhaps Diane von Furstenberg will make a comeback. See her iconic, print-knit dress here:

Sarah Palin has already made herself over, subtly:

the Tina Fey/Velma glasses are gone for the see-through rimless rectangles. Good for her to NOT go for contacts. What is wrong with glasses anyway?, mused the bike-riding, glasses-wearing professor....

the librarian up-swept hair in its bigness invokes the 80s, with a layer of busy hockey mom frosting the silhouette; What is happening now is a soft yet wispy framing of the face; do not look for a perfect pageboy or flip or Hollywood-just-been-forded look.

I do not place money on Sarah Palin wearing a dress soon; nor do I think that she has Deborah Harry or the Clash on her iPod.

Posted by: College Parkian | September 5, 2008 7:50 AM | Report abuse

Ecktually Palin wrote with Jones most of the time, not Idle.

Posted by: Spiney Norman | September 5, 2008 7:52 AM | Report abuse


Well, you know you're in for a heckuva day when a headache wakes you up in the wee hours, and when you get up to take something you're struck by chills and sweats. I hate summer flu/cold/dengue fever... *SIGH*

So I'm sorta "working from home" due to the wonders of da intertubes, and I can Boodle to my hearts content. As long as the cat stops jumping in my lap.

My oldest brother, who lives in NYC and unfortunately had a panoramic view of 9/11 from the front row, so to speak, is just about out-of-his-mind upset that the RNC stooped to such depths... AGAIN.

And I think the Redskins forgot to take the preseason stickers off their helmets and pads and stuff. Nice to see the entire league will honor Upshaw with patches on the uniforms AND playing field.

Hey TEL1!!! *aimed-towards-the-Mall-or-Germantown-or-wherever Grover waves* :-)

Posted by: Scottynuke | September 5, 2008 8:02 AM | Report abuse

And I almost forgot... Anyone see the "Hi, I'm Bill Gates and I have so much money I'll waste some of it getting Jerry Seinfeld to pretend he actually visits the cheap side of the mall and that I actually STILL shop there so we can play buddy-buddy and only make the most oblique reference to the latest Microshaft product" TV ad last night during the 'Skins game?



Posted by: Scottynuke | September 5, 2008 8:09 AM | Report abuse

Did anyone else think that the photos of Cindy Mccain had a Madonna like( the MOG, not the one who likes to boink Spanish guys) quality when the voice over mentioned her sons in service? The choice of a photo with dark clothes and white surrounding a highlighted face was no accident. There was sirrocco all over the place.
Pull my finger.

Posted by: Boko9999 | September 5, 2008 8:10 AM | Report abuse

Scotty... what was that Seinfeld/Bill Gates commercial FOR anyway?

I just assumed it was American Express (since that's the only company I remember seeing Seinfeld shill for), but I wasn't paying close attention and it just puzzled me.

Posted by: TBG | September 5, 2008 8:10 AM | Report abuse


If we're to take Bill & Jerry seriously, the ad is for edible computers... *shrug*

Posted by: Scottynuke | September 5, 2008 8:23 AM | Report abuse

New kit!

Posted by: TBG | September 5, 2008 8:29 AM | Report abuse

The number of Lake Wobegon School Districts in the US is exceeded only by the number of people who seem to think that creationism should be taught in science classes.

Posted by: Shiloh | September 5, 2008 8:29 AM | Report abuse

Both of these conventions have reminded me that getting elected is a weird process that has startlingly little to do with actually running the country.

An election is supposed to be like boats racing to harbor powered by The Issues. But the waters are full of dangerous currents. Currents so powerful that success often depends on the ability to position yourself so that you are pushed to where you want to go. And there are some powerful currents out there - racism, anti-intellectualism, religion, feminism, class resentment, fear, and good old-fashioned nationalism.

Although a smart captain can capture these currents and make it to harbor first, this don't really help much when dealing with the people waiting on the shore.

Posted by: RD Padouk | September 5, 2008 8:31 AM | Report abuse

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