Repub Convention So Far

I think the three biggest messages I’m getting so far from the Republican convention are these:

  • We’re very caring people.

  • You’re free to vote for us even if you don’t agree with our platform.

  • It’s the way in which we tell you that it’s “our way or the highway” that matters.
With only minor word changes, one of the Republicans said almost exactly what I did in the third bullet.

I wish interviewers in the media would be more challenging on the logic of the interviewee—it would impede the mendacity. “You mean that the Democrats don’t want X?” “You say Y, but how does your policy actually demonstrate that?”

I wish the Republican party mascot was a large, angry bull.

Gov McGreevey, meet Rep. Schrock

And the #@*! continues to hit the fan…this time it is a Republican. Ah, justice, how sweet you smell.

Va. Legislator Ends Bid for 3rd Term
Schrock Cites Unspecified Allegations Questioning His Ability to Serve

By Michael D. Shear and Chris L. Jenkins
Washington Post Staff Writers
Tuesday, August 31, 2004; Page A02

Rep. Edward L. Schrock (R-Va.) abruptly dropped out of his race for a third term yesterday, citing unspecified “allegations” that he said called into question his ability to represent his Virginia Beach district.

In a statement, Schrock, 63, did not address the nature of the allegations, but he said they “will not allow my campaign to focus on the real issues facing our nation and region.” His chief of staff, Tom Gordy, refused any further comment last night.

Schrock’s announcement came after a gay activist claimed on a Web site on Aug. 19 that Schrock is secretly gay.
Continue reading “Gov McGreevey, meet Rep. Schrock”

What’s the Frequency Kenneth?

So last night, I’m watching the news about the convention in NYC, right? And here’s the thing I notice right away: What’s with the headsets, Dan? Over on NBC, Tom Brokaw and his crew aren’t wearing headsets, and look, there’s Brian Williams down on the floor with a big ol’ microphone. But all of Dan Rather’s crew? Wearing those dorky headsets. Why? Are they trying to show us they’re mobile and wired? Plus, why are they so BIG?

Tangentailly related: On the same news broadcast, a story about the helmet cams the well dressed riot cops in Manhattan are wearing. The guy answering questions said it was so they could see if action on the streets is as bad as the cops are saying, but the paranoiac (is that a word?) in me thinks it’s so they can ID the protestors.

I’m focusing on the trivial so I can choke down the RNC. I really think I should know more about what rhetoric the opposition is using.

Meet the Backyard bloggers

Well, the The Seattle Times today launched Backyard Bloggers, of which I am one. My first post should appear today… we’ll see what the editing looks like. If it’s really different, I’ll post the original here. I can already tell which of these folks I’ll be arguing with. In general, though, it seems like a pretty cool and interesting crowd.

If everyone can help me out by posting with links from the Times, I’ll have a good excuse to link to your post and, as they say, flog the blog.

W, the new Major?

Could George W Bush become the next John Major? Major’s narrow re-election as UK PM in 1992 was, by all accounts, a disaster for the British Conservative Party. In this intriguing (but arithmetically-challenged: fourteen years ago?) article, Niall Ferguson argues a GWB re-election could be equally devastating for the Republican Party.

Cheap secrets

How do you spot an air marshal, those super-secret officers protecting our skies from terrorists? Just look for the guy asking for the Air Marshal’s Discount at the check-in desk.

I don’t know what’s more disturbing: that we’re willing to risk exposing the marshals to save a few bucks, or that we’ve downgraded a frontline in the War on Terror (TM) from Sheraton to Super 8. Ugh.

What goes around, comes around

Al French, a prosecutor in the Portland area, recently joined in the “Swift Boaters are Liars” mess when he swore that John Kerry was lying about his Vietnam record. French was there, but had no part in the specific events, nor did he have personal knowledge about the events. After this attorney was challenged about the veracity of his affidavit, he admitted that his testimony was based on his very good friends’ knowledge. Oh, OK, then.

Well, turns out that Mr. French has had a problem with telling the truth on more than this occasion. He is being placed on leave because it turns out that he lied about having an affair with a secretary (this would have been grounds for dismissal as it violated the office rules). He lied to keep his job and has now been busted. Also seems that he was fired before (and later reinstated by a new boss) for taking an unauthorized four-week leave.

Let me just state for the record: “Other attorneys hate guys like this. He is not representative of those of us with integrity.”

Read the whole Oregonian article here.

“He kept rolling away from me. He’s quite mobile.”

Talking Points Memo has a priceless entry about Bush, his pals, and their sense of humor.

As we wrote earlier, Max Cleland and Jim Rassman went to the president’s “ranch” today to present him with a letter

Cleland got stopped a the first roadblock.

He tried to give the letter to secret service officials guarding (giving the word rather a new meaning) the president. But the president got a political ally from Texas, Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson — who is also a vet — to show up and offer to take the letter, if Cleland would take a letter from him in exchange.

(The press accounts I’ve seen thus far don’t mention what the Bush campaign letter said.)

Cleland told him never mind; he’d rather stick it in the mail.

That prompted Patterson to utter this pricelessly unlovely retort …

“I tried to accept that letter and he would not give it to me,” said Patterson. “He would not face me. He kept rolling away from me. He’s quite mobile.”

Yes, quite mobile. Classic.

Did I mention that President Bush is addicted to having others do his dirty work for him?

Am I honor-bound to thank him for giving me this priceless example?

I don’t want to be accused of not doing my duty.

So a former Senator who lost three limbs in Vietnam is just a funny joke to Bush and his friends. Makes my blood boil.