Friday, September 19, 2008

Republicans Debunk McCain’s Charges Against Obama on Iraq

In his recent book, historian Robert Dallek described how Nixon and Kissinger intervened in Vietnam before the 1968 election for political gain. There have also been reports alleging that Ronald Reagan intervened with Iran to keep the hostages from released until after he replaced Jimmy Carter. John McCain, perhaps influenced by these allegations against Republican presidents, has made comparable allegations against Barack Obama following his trip to Iraq. Jake Tapper reports than even Republicans are contradicting his unfounded charges:

The charge — that Obama asked the Iraqis to delay signing off on a “Status of Forces Agreement,” thus delaying US troop withdrawal and interfering in U.S. foreign policy — has been picked up on the internet, talk radio and by Republicans including the McCain campaign, which seized on the story as possible evidence of duplicity.

The Obama campaign said that the Post report consisted of “outright distortions.”

Lending significant credence to Obama’s response is the fact that — though it’s absent from the Post story and other retellings — in addition to Obama and Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, this July meeting was also attended by Bush administration officials such as U.S. Ambassador to Iraq Ryan Crocker and the Baghdad embassy’s Legislative Affairs advisor Rich Haughton, as well as a Republican senator, Chuck Hagel of Nebraska.

Attendees of the meeting back Obama’s account, including not just Sen. Jack Reed, D-RI, but Hagel, Senate Foreign Relations Committee staffers from both parties. Officials of the Bush administration who were briefed on the meeting by the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad also support Obama’s account and dispute the Post story and McCain attack.

The Post story is “absolutely not true,” Hagel spokesman Mike Buttry told ABC News.

“Barack Obama has never urged a delay in negotiations,” said Obama campaign national security spokesperson Wendy Morigi, “nor has he urged a delay in immediately beginning a responsible drawdown of our combat brigades.”

After further discussion of how McCain has been distorting the situation, Tapper concludes:

What actually demands an explanation is why the McCain campaign was so willing to give credence to such a questionable story with such tremendous international implications without first talking to Republicans present at Obama’s meeting with Maliki, who back Obama’s version of the meeting and completely dismiss the Post column as untrue.

Dishonest McCain Ad Also Plays Race Card

Another McCain ad has been shown to be dishonest, with some even describing it as playing the race card. The Fact Checker at The Washington Post provides a summary and considers McCain’s attempts to tie Franklin Raines, former CEO of Fannie Mae, to Barack Obama to be dishonest. In giving McCain Two Pinocchios for the statements in his ad they conclude:

The McCain campaign is clearly exaggerating wildly in attempting to depict Franklin Raines as a close adviser to Obama on “housing and mortgage policy.” If we are to believe Raines, he did have a couple of telephone conversations with someone in the Obama campaign. But that hardly makes him an adviser to the candidate himself–and certainly not in the way depicted in the McCain video release.

Karen Tumulty says McCain is playing the race card with this ad:

When politicians interject race into a campaign, they seldom do it directly. Consider McCain’s new ad, which the campaign says it will be airing nationally:

This is hardly subtle: Sinister images of two black men, followed by one of a vulnerable-looking elderly white woman.

Let me stipulate: Obama’s Fannie Mae connections are completely fair game. But this ad doesn’t even mention a far more significant tie–that of Jim Johnson, the former Fannie Mae chairman who had to resign as head of Obama’s vice presidential search team after it was revealed he got a sweetheart deal on a mortgage from Countrywide Financial. Instead, it relies on a fleeting and tenuous reference in a Washington Post Style section story to suggest that Obama’s principal economic adviser is former Fannie Mae Chairman Frank Raines. Why? One reason might be that Johnson is white; Raines is black.

And the image of the victim doesn’t seem accidental either, given the fact that older white women are a key swing constituency in this election.

Marc Ambinder sees this as playing the race card from a different angle:

If one is to impart an ulterior motive to the ads creators, it might well be that they’re hoping that the Obama campaign (or the media) condends the ads as racist and therefore magnifies their effect. Call it — “Playing The Race Card” card.

This is all probably a sign of despiration as McCain falls further in the polls. In August, when similarly behind, he showed his despiration in the choice of Sarah Palin as running mate. Now that this is beginning to backfire, he must look for other ways to try to get back in the race. Things might really get ugly when we have someone like John McCain running who is willing to say or do anything to attempt to get elected.

Someone Ask Sarah Palin About Dinosaurs

Last Saturday, Amy Poeler, portraying Hillary Clinton on Saturday Night Live, challenged the press to "grow a pair" and to question Sarah Palin about her views. She advised the press: "Please ask this one about dinosaurs." Unfortunately Palin has been avoiding the media and attempting to hide her views. Lacking honest answers from Palin, reporters are forced to resort to information such as reports from those who have followed her in Alaska. David Talbot has interviewed people who have followed Palin and it appears Amy Poeler got it right as it does appear that Palin is a young earth creationist.

Talbot interviewed Howard Bess, a retired American Baptist minister from nearby Palmer, Alaska. Bess' book, Pastor, I Am Gay, was one of the books which Palin had attempted to have removed from the Wasilla library. After discussing this incident, along with her anti-abortion rights activities, Talbot wrote about discussing Palin's views on creationism with another local activist:

Another valley activist, Philip Munger, says that Palin also helped push the evangelical drive to take over the Mat-Su Borough school board. "She wanted to get people who believed in creationism on the board," said Munger, a music composer and teacher. "I bumped into her once after my band played at a graduation ceremony at the Assembly of God. I said, 'Sarah, how can you believe in creationism -- your father's a science teacher.' And she said, 'We don't have to agree on everything.'

"I pushed her on the earth's creation, whether it was really less than 7,000 years old and whether dinosaurs and humans walked the earth at the same time. And she said yes, she'd seen images somewhere of dinosaur fossils with human footprints in them."

Munger also asked Palin if she truly believed in the End of Days, the doomsday scenario when the Messiah will return. "She looked in my eyes and said, 'Yes, I think I will see Jesus come back to earth in my lifetime.'"

It is quite scary that someone who rejects the fundamentals of basic science, and who shows such a shocking inability to engage in rational thought, could wind up being a heartbeat away from the presidency.

Sarah Palin and the John Birch Society

Since Sarah Palin was chosen to be John McCain's running mate there have been numerous connections between her and the extreme right, which she has tried to downplay. There have also been concerns about the influences on Palin, between the far right anti-Semitic author she quoted during her acceptance speech and the extreme views of her pastors. Ben Smith reports on a new connection. A picture taken at her desk from 1995, when she was a member of the Wasilla city council, shows an issue of The New American--the publication of The John Birch Society.

It is difficult to say for certain how meaningful this is. I receive publications from right wing extremist groups at my office, but they wind up in the wastebasket. I certainly would not feature one in a picture taken at my desk. I've also read a number of publications from both the far right and the far left. Before all viewpoints were easily available on line I've even had subscriptions to The National Review and Human Events, and continue to subscribe to libertarian publications such as Reason. However, these are hardly as extreme as the Birchers. There would be nothing wrong even with reading what the Birchers have to say if one was reading the views of a very wide range of people. Unfortunately in Sarah Palin's case we repeatedly find such connections only to the extreme right, and Palin has certainly not shown any evidence of also considering alternative points of view. .

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Another Conservative for Obama

Wick Allison, a former publisher of The National Review, has endorsed Barack Obama. He might be incorrect on the definition of liberalism, but at least he realizes which candidate would have a more realistic approach to dealing with today’s problems:

THE MORE I LISTEN TO AND READ ABOUT “the most liberal member of the U.S. Senate,” the more I like him. Barack Obama strikes a chord with me like no political figure since Ronald Reagan. To explain why, I need to explain why I am a conservative and what it means to me.

In 1964, at the age of 16, I organized the Dallas County Youth for Goldwater. My senior thesis at the University of Texas was on the conservative intellectual revival in America. Twenty years later, I was invited by William F. Buckley Jr. to join the board of National Review. I later became its publisher.

Conservatism to me is less a political philosophy than a stance, a recognition of the fallibility of man and of man’s institutions. Conservatives respect the past not for its antiquity but because it represents, as G.K. Chesterton said, the democracy of the dead; it gives the benefit of the doubt to customs and laws tried and tested in the crucible of time. Conservatives are skeptical of abstract theories and utopian schemes, doubtful that government is wiser than its citizens, and always ready to test any political program against actual results.

Liberalism always seemed to me to be a system of “oughts.” We ought to do this or that because it’s the right thing to do, regardless of whether it works or not. It is a doctrine based on intentions, not results, on feeling good rather than doing good.

But today it is so-called conservatives who are cemented to political programs when they clearly don’t work. The Bush tax cuts—a solution for which there was no real problem and which he refused to end even when the nation went to war—led to huge deficit spending and a $3 trillion growth in the federal debt. Facing this, John McCain pumps his “conservative” credentials by proposing even bigger tax cuts. Meanwhile, a movement that once fought for limited government has presided over the greatest growth of government in our history. That is not conservatism; it is profligacy using conservatism as a mask.

Today it is conservatives, not liberals, who talk with alarming bellicosity about making the world “safe for democracy.” It is John McCain who says America’s job is to “defeat evil,” a theological expansion of the nation’s mission that would make George Washington cough out his wooden teeth.

This kind of conservatism, which is not conservative at all, has produced financial mismanagement, the waste of human lives, the loss of moral authority, and the wreckage of our economy that McCain now threatens to make worse.

Barack Obama is not my ideal candidate for president. (In fact, I made the maximum donation to John McCain during the primaries, when there was still hope he might come to his senses.) But I now see that Obama is almost the ideal candidate for this moment in American history. I disagree with him on many issues. But those don’t matter as much as what Obama offers, which is a deeply conservative view of the world. Nobody can read Obama’s books (which, it is worth noting, he wrote himself) or listen to him speak without realizing that this is a thoughtful, pragmatic, and prudent man. It gives me comfort just to think that after eight years of George W. Bush we will have a president who has actually read the Federalist Papers.

Most important, Obama will be a realist. I doubt he will taunt Russia, as McCain has, at the very moment when our national interest requires it as an ally. The crucial distinction in my mind is that, unlike John McCain, I am convinced he will not impulsively take us into another war unless American national interests are directly threatened.

“Every great cause,” Eric Hoffer wrote, “begins as a movement, becomes a business, and eventually degenerates into a racket.” As a cause, conservatism may be dead. But as a stance, as a way of making judgments in a complex and difficult world, I believe it is very much alive in the instincts and predispositions of a liberal named Barack Obama.

Palin Proposes Legislation Which Obama Already Had Passed

During her acceptance speech at the Republican convention, Sarah Palin accused Obama of not having written any major legislation. It was obvious at the time that she had no idea of Obama’s actual legislative accomplishments. She showed it again today when she talked about one proposal without realizing that Obama had already passed the same legislation. CNN reports:

Sarah Palin likes to tell voters around the country about how she “put the government checkbook online” in Alaska. On Thursday, Palin suggested she would take that same proposal to Washington.

“We’re going to do a few new things also,” she said at a rally in Cedar Rapids. “For instance, as Alaska’s governor, I put the government’s checkbook online so that people can see where their money’s going. We’ll bring that kind of transparency, that responsibility, and accountability back. We’re going to bring that back to D.C.”

There’s just one problem with proposing to put the federal checkbook online – somebody’s already done it. His name is Barack Obama.

In 2006 and 2007, Obama teamed up with Republican Sen. Tom Coburn to pass the Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act, also known as “Google for Government.” The act created a free, searchable web site – — that discloses to the public all federal grants, contracts, loans and insurance payments.

In June of this year, Obama and Coburn introduced new Senate legislation to expand the information available online to include details on earmarks, competitive bidding, criminal activities, audit disputes and other government information.

Joe Klein Exposes John McCain’s Lying Game

One remarkable aspect about the coverage of all the lies coming from John McCain is that many in the media are outright calling them lies. Joe Klein, one of many columnists who has changed his mind about McCain this year, writes:

Politics has always been lousy with blather and chicanery. But there are rules and traditions too. In the early weeks of the general-election campaign, a consensus has grown in the political community — a consensus that ranges from practitioners like Karl Rove to commentators like, well, me — that John McCain has allowed his campaign to slip the normal bounds of political propriety. The situation has gotten so intense that we in the media have slipped our normal rules as well. Usually when a candidate tells something less than the truth, we mince words. We use euphemisms like mendacity and inaccuracy … or, as the Associated Press put it, “McCain’s claims skirt facts.” But increasing numbers of otherwise sober observers, even such august institutions as the New York Times editorial board, are calling John McCain a liar. You might well ask, What has McCain done to deserve this? What unwritten rules did he break? Are his transgressions of degree or of kind?

Almost every politician stretches the truth. We journalists try to point out the exaggerations and criticize them, then let the voters decide. When McCain says, for example, that Barack Obama favors a government-run health-care system, he’s not telling the truth — Obama wants a market-based system subsidized by the government — but McCain’s untruth illuminates a general policy direction, which is sketchy but sort of within the bounds. (Obama’s plan would increase government regulation of the drug and insurance industries.) Obama has done this sort of thing too. In July, he accused McCain of supporting the foreign buyout of an American company that could lead to the loss of about 8,000 jobs in Wilmington, Ohio. McCain did support the deal, but the job loss comes many years later and was not anticipated at the time. That, however, is where the moral equivalency between these two campaigns ends.

After further discussion of many of the lies McCain has told, Klein hits the key point in writing, “The McCain camp has decided that its candidate can’t win honorably, on the issues, so it has resorted to transparent and phony diversions.” He later concludes:

The good news is that the vile times may be ending. The coming debates will decide this race, and it isn’t easy to tell lies when your opponent is standing right next to you. The Wall Street collapse demands a more sober campaign as well. But these dreadful weeks should not be forgotten. John McCain has raised serious questions about whether he has the character to lead the nation. He has defaced his beloved military code of honor. He has run a dirty campaign.

I’m not certain that McCain is really being more dishonest than Bush and Cheney, but the response to such lies from McCain is probably worse because of his previous reputation as a straight talker. Journalists, including Joe Klein, who helped spread that myth now realize they had been conned, and are not very happy about it.

There He Goes Again: Factcheck Catches McCain Lying About Obama’s Tax Plan

John McCain seems to believe that he can keep repeating the same lies and there won’t be any political consequences. He has a new ad out repeating the same lies as he has told in the past about Obama’s tax policies, leading to put out a report entitled There He Goes Again. Their summary states:

The McCain-Palin campaign has released a new ad that once again distorts Obama’s tax plans.

  • The ad claims Obama will raise taxes on electricity. He hasn’t proposed any such tax. Obama does support a cap-and-trade policy that would raise the costs of electricity, but so does McCain.
  • It falsely claims he would tax home heating oil. Actually, Obama proposed a rebate of up to $1,000 per family to defray increased heating oil costs, funded by what he calls a windfall profits tax on oil companies.
  • The ad claims that Obama will tax “life savings.” In fact, he would increase capital gains and dividends taxes only for couples earning more than $250,000 per year, or singles making $200,000. For the rest, taxes on investments would remain unchanged.

The McCain campaign argues in its documentation for this ad that, whatever Obama says he would do, he will eventually be forced to break his promise and raise taxes more broadly to pay for his promised spending programs. That’s an opinion they are certainly entitled to express, and to argue for. But their ad doesn’t do that. Instead, it simply presents the McCain camp’s opinion as a fact, and it fails to alert viewers that its claims are based on what the campaign thinks might happen in the future.

There is more information in the body. Taking up the last point, it is true that Obama’s campaign promises don’t totally add up and he will have to scale them back, increase taxes, or (as he states he plans) engage in deficit spending. This is probably true of all politicians as campaigns lead them to promise more than they can really afford. The problem here for McCain is that his tax policies fail even worse at adding up as his promised tax cuts would increase the deficit more than Obama’s spending plans. Factcheck points out:

It’s certainly true that Obama’s proposed spending is lower than his projected revenues, and Obama has made no secret of the fact that his plan will not result in balanced budgets for the next four years. According to the Tax Policy Center, without spending cuts elsewhere, Obama’s proposals could lead to between $3.6 trillion and $5.9 trillion in new debt over 10 years. The McCain-Palin campaign is certainly entitled to argue that that level of debt is unsustainable and that Obama would therefore have to raise taxes.

That, however, is a dangerous argument. The same Tax Policy Center analysis shows that McCain’s proposals would raise the debt by between $5.1 trillion and $7.4 trillion over 10 years. And while McCain has promised to balance the budget by 2013, the Tax Policy Center notes that doing so would require a 25 percent reduction in federal spending. Few economists outside the McCain-Palin campaign think that is a feasible goal. So, by the ad’s logic, Obama could just as easily claim that McCain supports a massive tax increase.

As the article points out, McCain has been exaggerating the impact of an increase in capital gains taxes under Obama. Many conservatives have accused Obama of doing this to “redistribute the wealth” as they try to portray him as some type of socialist, ignoring the free-market philosophy of his economic advisers from The University of Chicago. While Obama would increase the top capital gains tax for couples making over $250,000, he would increase it to a top rate of 20%, which is significantly less than it was under Ronald Reagan. By their logic, Ronald Reagan would be the socialist, not Obama.

Rejected Idea: “Sluts For Obama”

Lindsay Lohan’s father has attacked Obama as his campaign has rejected the idea of having Lindsay represent Obama. Fox News reports:

According to the Chicago Sun-Times, LiLo wanted to promote Obama but was turned away by his camp due to her wild ways. Now daddy Michael Lohan is biting back.

“For Barack Obama to condemn my daughter for past indiscretions when he admitted to the exact same himself is indicative of what kind of president he would be,” Michael Lohan told Pop Tarts via e-mail on Wednesday night.

“His visions of a positive future for this country should be representative of a positive future for people as well. It is looking beyond the difficult times and letting go of the past,” Michael said. “Obviously, Obama can do this for himself and not others, when in fact a good president should have hope for all.”

Obama has admitted to the exact same past indiscretions? He has admitted to some experimentation with drugs when younger, but this hardly approached Lindsay Lohan levels. Besides, I’ve never seen a picture of Obama out in public displaying a lack of underware.

Sluts for Obama? They are right for rejecting this offer. This is Barack Obama’s party now–not Bill Clinton’s or John Edwards’.

Liberal Values--Up Intermittently

The main blog seems to come back for a while and then go down again (twice causing me to lose posts I was working on when I thought it was working). The hosting company is still having problems and is way behind on answering support tickets so I have no idea how long this will be going on for. At present it is down, but it has been available intermittently for much of the day.

Posting has been lighter due to this and I will continue to copy completed posts here until everything is fixed. I'm also pretty booked up this afternoon, going into evening, and will only post much new material if the main blog is working. If not, I will probably begin posting new material here later this evening and copy them to the main blog when it is back up.

The Pain In Spain Comes Mainly From McCain

We have had John McCain joking about bombing Iran and Sarah Palin taking a light view of going to war with Russia. Now McCain appears ready to turn Spain, a NATO ally, into an enemy.

The controversy began last night with Josh Marshall having several posts about a Spanish-language interview. In the interview it was initially not clear whether McCain knew who Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Zapatero was as he appeared to be referring to him in a manner similar to anti-American leaders of countries such as Venezuela, Bolivia and Cuba. The Washington Post reports that McCain’s campaign has since clarified the issue, stating that the comments about McCain not wanting to speak with Zapatero were intentional.

It sounds like John McCain would continue the cowboy diplomacy of George Bush which has isolated the United States from much of the world and take it to new extremes. That’s another reason why we cannot risk having John McCain in the White House.

Hannity/Palin Interveiw Transcript Generator

In case you missed Sean Hannity’s interview with Sarah Palin, you haven’t missed much. You can generate a close approximation of the transcript of the interview using this simple generator:

Step 1) Sean Hannity states typical right wing talking point (fill in yourself).

Step 2) Hannity says, “Don’t you agree Sarah.”

Step 3) Palin agrees, repeats same talking point

Step 4) Repeat Step 1

Of course since this is Palin throw in a few random lies. Andrew Sullivan gives an example of one, with follow up here.

Sarah Palin's Honesty Questioned By Both Fact Checkers and Conservative Columnist

Everyone seems to be attacking John McCain for not adequately vetting Sarah Palin. Maybe we misjudged him on this one. Considering how McCain’s campaign is now based upon lying, and repeating the same lies once caught, maybe he knew what he was doing in picking Palin. Today The Washington Post’s fact checker gave Palin Four Pinocchios for lying about Alaska’s role in providing energy. What is remarkable about this is that this occurred after these lies were already exposed by Their report concludes:

After nonpartisan pointed out Palin’s error in her interview with Gibson, the governor revised her statement somewhat, limiting it to oil and gas. But data compiled by the Energy Information Administration (EIA) contradict her claim that she oversees “nearly 20 percent” of oil and gas production in the country. According to authoritative EIA data, Alaska accounted for 7.4 percent of total U.S. oil and gas production in 2005.

It is not even correct for Palin to claim that her state is responsible for “nearly 20 percent” of U.S. oil production. Oil production has fallen sharply in Alaska during her governorship. The state’s share of total U.S. oil production fell from 18 percent in 2005 to 13 percent this year, according to the EIA.

The McCain-Palin campaign did not respond to a request for an explanation.


The Republican vice presidential nominee continues to peddle bogus statistics three days after the original error was pointed out by independent fact-checkers.

There are also people in Alaska who are getting fed up with Palin’s dishonesty. The Anchorage Daily News has an op-ed entitled No one is above the truth, even Palin. Republican Don Fagan writes:

You really can’t experience the full effect of Monday’s news conference featuring Palin spokeswoman Meghan Stapleton unless you hear it for yourself. Stapleton passionately attacked former Commissioner of Public Safety Walt Monegan. Her rhetoric was plain, desperate, and obvious. Her tone, pure shrill…

The governor has given so many different reasons for firing Monegan I’ve lost count. From the “we need new direction” and “new energy” to “he wasn’t hiring enough cops,” to “he wasn’t doing enough about alcohol in the bush” to “he lobbied for budget increases” to the latest version, which is a doozy; Monegan displayed “egregious rogue behavior.”

The governor also originally said that neither she, Todd nor anyone from her administration pressured Monegan regarding Trooper Wooten. Palin then was forced to admit there was serial contact once the Frank Bailey tape surfaced. But she insisted she was just learning of it. But e-mails have surfaced detailing Palin complaining to Monegan about Wooten.

The governor also originally said an investigation was needed and promised to cooperate. Then she instructed her employees not to talk to the investigator and has herself refused to be interviewed. Palin can’t constantly change her story and expect us to believe her each time she does…

I want McCain and Palin to win too. But with Palin’s refusal to cooperate with the independent investigator and her transparent delay tactics, Americans deserve to know what Palin is trying to hide before we vote her a heartbeat away from the leader of the free world.

My fellow conservatives, remember how frustrating it was when Bill Clinton committed perjury and liberals looked the other way.

As conservatives, we are no better unless we demand full disclosure from our governor when it comes to Troopergate.

No politician is so popular and charismatic that they should be above accountability and telling the truth. Not even Sarah Palin.

I want McCain and Palin to win too. But with Palin’s refusal to cooperate with the independent investigator and her transparent delay tactics, Americans deserve to know what Palin is trying to hide before we vote her a heartbeat away from the leader of the free world…

As conservatives, we are no better unless we demand full disclosure from our governor when it comes to Troopergate.

No politician is so popular and charismatic that they should be above accountability and telling the truth. Not even Sarah Palin.

It is good to see a conservative demand honesty here.

McCain Didn't See The Crisis Coming

We are still not getting straight talk from John McCain. Jake Tapper exposes that McCain is not telling the truth here when he claims to have warmed about the financial crisis:

“Two years ago, I warned that the oversight of Fannie and Freddie was terrible, that we were facing a crisis because of it, or certainly serious problems,” Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., told CBS this morning. “The influence that Fannie and Freddie had in the inside the Beltway, old boy network, which led to this kind of corruption is unacceptable and I warned about it a couple of years ago.”

How does this claim of foresight square with this interview that McCain gave to the Keene (NH) Sentinel, discussing the subprime mortgage crisis, in December 2007?

Q: “Well the dimension of this problem may be surprising to a lot of people, but to many people, to many others there were feelings that there was something amiss, something was going too fast, something was a little too hot. Going back several years. Were you one of them? Or, I mean you’re a busy guy, you’re looking at a lot of things, maybe subprime mortgages wasn’t something you focused on every day. Were you surprised?

McCain: “Yeah. And I was surprised at the dot-com collapse and I was surprised at other times in our history. I don’t know if surprised is the word, but…

Q: “S&Ls?”

McCain: “I don’t — what did you say?”

Q: “The S&Ls.”

McCain: “Yeah, the S&Ls.”

Q: “Is this bigger than that?

McCain: “I don’t know the dimensions of this. It’s hard to know what the dimensions are. As I say, I never thought I’d pick up the paper and see a city in Norway is somehow dramatically impacted by it. When I say ‘surprised’ I’m not surprised when in capitalist systems that there’s greed and excess. I think it was Teddy Roosevelt who said ‘unfettered capitalism leads to corruption’ or something like that, that people have disputed for years.

“But so, in this whole new derivative stuff, and SIBs and all of this kind of new ways of packaging mortgages together and all that is something that frankly I don’t know a lot about.

“But I do rely on a lot of smart people that I have that are both in my employ and acquaintances of mine. And most of them did not anticipate this. Most of them, I mean I can find some that did. But, a guy that’s on my staff named Doug Holtz-Eakin, who was once the head of the Office of Management and Budget, said that there was nervousness out there. There’s nervousness. There was nervousness that we had such a long period of prosperity without a downturn because of the history of our economy. But I don’t know of hardly anybody, with the exception of a handful, that said ‘wait a minute, this thing is getting completely out of hand and is overheating.’

“So, I’d like to tell you that I did anticipate it, but I have to give you straight talk, I did not.”

(Watch the whole thing HERE.)

That hardly sounds like a person who is capable of handling crisis involving the economy, as once more we see that it is just too risky to have John McCain as president. Besides, does anyone really believe the claims that John McCain will take on the insiders and lobbyists he’s indebted to? Obama had a great line on this:

Yesterday, John McCain actually said that if he’s president that he’ll take on, and I quote, ‘the old boys network in Washington.’

Now I’m not making this up. This is somebody who’s been in Congress for twenty-six years, who put seven of the most powerful Washington lobbyists in charge of his campaign.

And now he tells us that he’s the one who’s gonna’ to take on the old boys network. The old boys network? In the McCain campaign that’s called a staff meeting. Come, on!

Republicans have won before with campaign messages which have been counter fact, but this time they are trying to sell even bigger fantasies. It is hard to believe John McCain can really get away with what amounts to a campaign promising to reform both the party whose policies he has pledged to continue as well as his closest supporters.

Liberal Values Down

After the blog came back up for several hours yesterday it has been down overnight. There is no word yet as to how long it will remain down.

I currently have a copy of a few posts from yesterday which I will post following this. If the blog stays down longer I will try to see if I can find any other copies of recent posts, and might begin adding new posts here for later transfer to the main blog.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Liberal Values Down for Maintenance

The hosting service, which has been having intermittent problems since yesterday, wound up having to shut down most of their servers for maintenance this morning. No word yet when Liberal Values will be back up and running. This site will be used for temporary posting should the blog be down for a sustained amount of time.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Main Site Down For Several Hours

Liberal Values has been down since this morning as it was necessary for the server to be rebooted. They are currently performing file system checks and the blog should hopefully be back on line soon.

Update: The site is back up.