Thousands of lawyers will be on hand to ensure that voter fraud and other shenanigans are not used to influence the outcome next Tuesday. The Obama team is sending 5000 lawyers to Florida alone. In the first e-mail, he sent out, nearly 6000 lawyers volunteered. He has sent 2 more e-mails.
The DNC has signed up 10.000 so far. They will be used in a variety of ways.... to get more early voting sites open, to run voter education programs, to protect voters' voting rights, run voter protection hot lines etc. In Montana, where the Republicans tried to purge 6,000 voters, from the rolls, they were able challenge it successfully in Federal court. In Detroit, they were able to work out a compromise when the Republicans tried to use home foreclosures lists to challenge voters
The Republicans have their army of lawyers too, but will not disclose how many, saying only that they will have enough to respond to ant " contingency ".
McCain is using Obama/Reid/Pelosi as the " dangerous threesome ", and painting them as the three most " liberal ", who would go on a spending spree bigger than the $ 700 billion Wall Street bailout. It is becoming apparent that the Democrats can win as much as 20 more seats in the House and 6-8 more in the Senate. Obama's coattail is long and broad.
Two neo-nazis have been arrested for plotting to go on a killing spree, including Obama and 102 other black people. This is the second such plot to be revealed. All the talk about Obama being a Muslim, about him cosying with home grown terrorists, about who he really is, all the fear and insecurity that is being generated by McCain/Palin is bringing the kooks and the haters out of the woodworks.
God help America!!!!!
Palin is being accused by McCain" aides of " going rogue " and being a " diva ". I guess it's the fault of all those designer clothes they bought for her. Even the largest newspaper in Alaska, the Anchorage Daily News, has endorsed Obama, saying that it is too " risky " to put her " one 72 year old heartbeat away from the leadership of the w.
Palin"s approval rating is sinking to the low 40%, and she is becoming more and more a liability. Her attempts to score with women who supported Hillary has failed miserably and was an insult to them, when she asked them to support her because she is a woman. She has little in common with these women on social issues....as mayor she charged rape victims for rape kits that were used , until the Alaskan government stepped in and stopped it.
The infighting and finger-pointing between the two camps is getting more and more bitter and public. She is being accused of positioning herself for 2112, " she is playing for her own future and sees herself as the next leader of the party " , a McCain aide told CNN.
In the meantime the well-oiled and financed, Obama machine is rolling up support even in Republican states. It looks like a landslide.
On the home front, the sorcerer's apprentice, Mario Dumont is in a deep funk over the desertion of 2 of his MNA'S. At a delegate convention this weekend, he tried to rally his troops by talking about re-opening the constitution, His part is at 16% in the latest polls, the economy is tanking, rats are leaving his sinking ship, and all he can come up with is that he is " 100% sure ", he will reopen the constitution. He wants a new Quebec-Canada pact, and Quebec status as a nation entrenched in the constitution, amon other things. Please call an election so this dodo can sent to the oblivion he deserves.
Richard " Dick " Pound, recent statement about First Nations being " savages ", demonstrate not only his ignorance but " the just below the surface racism ", that permeates this society. Before Eurppeans came and exploited and eradicated them, in their thousands, they had lived in self-sustainig communities, governing themselves according to their laws and in harmony with their surroundings. The civilised Europeans with their " superior culture " used smallpox, alcohol, forced religion, residential schools,and forced relocation to grind them into misery and dependency. They hunted the Boethuks into extinction and then decided that others must be recast in the European image, so their children were taken away and sent to residential schools, where they were brutalised,. Who are the real savages?
The attacks on Obama by Sarah Palin continue with a new twist. Now she is invoking God, saying that the outcome is in " God's hand ". This ties in nicely with her calling Obama a socialist. " I am going to know at the end of the day, putting this in God's hands, that the right thing for America will be done ",she told Christian evangelical leader James Dobson"
It has also been revealed that the Republican National Committee has spent $150,000 for clothes and haircare for her and her family. This is on top of revealations that she charged the Alaskan taxpayers for expenses incurred by her family's travel expenses. I wonder what" Joe the plumber " and " the hockey moms " think abouit this.She has been spouting invectives in the name of the middle class, claiming to represent the middle class, but now she has been exposed as just another money grubbing politician, feeding at the public trough.
Time and overexposure have had its impact. The novelty has worn off and she is seen merely,as an uninformed, Saks Avenue/ Nieman Marcus wind-up politico. Her malleablity/ ignorance was an asset, but now polling by the Harvard Institute of Politics is indicating that she failed to woo young voters and may even have turned them off by her vituperatiion. " We now have data that indicate that the choice of Palin didn't help and probably hurt the Republican party,"said John Della Volpe, director of polling.
Faith and Fear..............this what the McCain/ Palin campaign is counting on. They have admitted that talking about the economy will lose them the election. Not even the Wall Street debacle has allowed them to get on track, and come up with ideas . They are adrift and so, the crass appeal to Faith and Fear. Now a poll released by their favourite network... Fox, has Obama up by 9 points.....49-40, nationally. Other polls show what is more significant, that is that ,Obama is leading in such crucial states as Ohio, Virginia and even N. Carolina and Florida.
Race, Faith Fear and socialism........ these are the bogeymen!!!
Two weeks to go and desperation is giving way to wackiness. First Palin tried to parody herself on SNL and now McCain is calling Obama a socialist. The lies , the distortions, the character assaults and the attempts to tie him to questionable personalities have failed, so the new bogeyman is socialism, This is at a time when the Bush administration is cozying to Libya and Syria making overtures to Iran and removing North Korea from the terror list and adoptimg policies of government intervention in the marketplace.
In September Obama raised $ 150 million. Now Colin Powell ( perhaps trying to rehabilitate himsrlf after being used and lied to by Bush and Cheney on WMD in Iraq ), has stated that he will vote for Obama, He also critized McCain for his abusive campaign and on the choice of Palin, who according to Powell is not qualify to be president.
While Obama seems to be comfortably ahead, there is the lingering fear that, race will still play a part and may deny him the presidency. It is estimated that about 6% of the white voters may vote racially. This may be crucial in Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and North Carplina. In Florida McCain's supporters are saying that Obama is more communist than Castro......the Cuban American vote is crucial.
Young voters may be the key for Obama. They are excited by him. If they turn out in large numbers, they will be the difference. Women who were disenchanted when Hilary was not chosen, may be returning to the party, especially because they realise that the next president will be naming judges to replace retirees in the Supreme Court....abortion, equal rights and other social issues are at stake.
The next two weeks will be most interesting. Amrerica can send a message of hope to itself and the rest of the world or it can turn inward and waste a glorious opportunity.
10 million Voters did not cast their ballot. It was the lowest turnout ....59.1%, worse than 2006, when 60.9%, turned out. More and more voters are tuning out, and this is troublesome. Uninspired leaders and candidates, broken promises, failure to strike a chord or to raise and deal with issues that resonate with the people, dirty campaigns and too many polls. This latter is drowning out the debate that should take place. It is insiduous and anti-democratic, and has drained the drama from elections.
$300 million spent for more of the same. Harper's broken promise of a fixed election date , calling an election when none was necessary, was based on polls that showed that he can win a majority. He believed the polls and failed in his objecyive. We are stuck with another Pizza Parliament and the "dysfunction ", of the last one will be even more pronounced.
The Ref/ Cons increased their seat count by 16. The Liberals dropped 19, the N.D.P. won 7 more and the Bloc won 3 more. Harper was shut out in Newfoundland and failed to improve in Quebec and more ominously, he failed again to win any seats in Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver.
The Liberals lost heavily in Ontario.........almost 800,000 less votes there. Dion failed to get his Green Shift going and his arrangement with the Greens flopped. This was the worse showing...26% of the popular vote, for the Liberals and Dion has to be held responsible. Let the leadership fight begin !!!.
The N.D.P. won 37 seats, the second largest ( 40 ) in their history. They expected much more, so there is much work to be done. The Bloc , while getting less popular support in this election, increased to 50. They expected to do better, They are obselete and redundant but do not tell that to the Quebecois/e.
So what is to be expected? More of the same...acrimony in Parliament, no new initiatives, the same old Harper agenda on the environment, on Afghanistan, on social issues.......jail sentences for the young, cut backs in the Arts and Culture etc., This will not be for long. Even though the Liberals will be in leadership limbo, this will not prevent gamemanships and positionings by all three opposition parties with an eye on the next election .
I did not expect the Liberals to do as badly as they did , especially in Ontario. As such I did not expect the Ref/ Cons to do as well they did. As well, I thought that the turnout would be far higher. I have to do a better job reading the tea leaves or maybe change to reading tarot.
Today's election is crucial. Hard decisions have to be made on the economy, on the environment, on our presence in Afghanistan, on openness in government, on protection of consumers etc. The Reform/ Conservatives have shown that they are incapable and /or unwilling to do what is necessary.
They waited until the last days of the campaign to reveal their programme, and what they came up with was practically nothing new....not on the economy, not on the environment....nothing. It is clearly evident that they are out of touch and out of their depths .
The Liberals stumbled at the start, but have found their feet as the campaign rolled along. They were helped by the economic meltdown ( they have a very good record on the economy, and people remember that it was Chretien and the Liberals who gave us 8 years of growth after Mulroney and the Conservatives ), and in the last two weeks have been able to get their message across.They will hang to their support and may pick up some seats.
The N.D.P. ran a good campaign and may hold on to their seats, Chances of them picking up additional seats will depend on two things 1. the Green party taking votes from them and the Green's close ties to the Liberals and 2. the many voters who will park their votes with the Liberals in order to stop the Reform/ Conservatives.
The B.Q. after getting a scare, will hold on to their seats in Quebec. Any chance of the Ref/ Cons. picking off some of their seats has evaporated. Harper's gamble has failed.
The Pizaza Parliament will continue, but the Liberals will end up with the most seats with 115-120 seats . The Ref/Cons 110-117. The NDP 30-33. and the Bloc 44-47. The Greens have a good with May winning.
Now you go and make your statement.
Race is the huge unspoken elephant in the election. This is the rotten underbelly in America, and" the idea that is America”, will never be fully be realized until this is, dealt with and gotten rid of . It is not just the sheriff in Florida and his Hussain quip. It is Palin and McCain. In desperation, they are using code words and questions e.g. who is the real Obama? Can you trust Obama? Is he really Muslim? Etc.
America began as a beautiful idea, but the idea that is America will never be realized until this spectre is revealed and discussed and gotten rid of. This is the pity of it all.
Democracy is a debate, a continuing debate. This debate must not be debased by sound and fury, by lies and distortions, or by venom masquerading as discourse. This election more than any in recent years, will decide the central role that America must and should play. It requires leadership……”Integrity and Intellect”, “Character and Competence “. It is not too late for the real issues to be discussed. “Attack and Distract “and the Politics of personality, has not worked. Obama has been cool under intense and personal attacks. He has remained on message, but the pity of it, is that, because of the lack of real debate, he has not been fully tested on his plans, and this is a mistake.
Obama will win the election, maybe even by a landslide. McCain is not a bad candidate. His choice of Palin, while it energized the base, has not served him well. She is quickly becoming a liability…..her shallowness has been exposed. She has little of substance to offer…as wink and a leer will not suffice. If he had chosen better, this would have been quite an election. An opportunity has been lost and America is worse off as a consequence.
Barack Obama won the debate last night hands down. He was cool under constant attack, diastortions , outright lies and even questioning of his patriotism by McCain. McCaim was clearly desperate and his too frequent references to " my friends " , and beating the drum of his service and his failure to offer any concrete ( except the plan to buy up mortgages ) plans to deal with the economic meltdown, was evident. He was a soorry figure and could not match the vibrancy and intellectual vigour of Obama.
Obama should be 20 points ahead in the polls. The race should be over. The reason he is not so far ahead and the reason why the race is not over is RACE. Last night on CNN, David Gergen, Republican and CNN consultant stated as much when he said that the race is not over because " Obama is black ". He went on to say that "polls were not believable " People lie to pollsters on this question of race as a factor and he went on to sa that " as much as 6% of support was lost because of his blackness ".
Social fibbing ( people not truly responding ), has always been a factor in polling, but in America the issue of race is deeplyand negatively felt by many. Will this be the crucial factor in November? Yes. How can it be offset? By more open minded people speaking out about it and if they support Obama, they should turn out in great numbers and vote. Make sure the hatemongers do not deal a ruinous blow to the U.S.A. and its chance to get a leader whio is supremely qualified . The media must stop pretending that race is not an issue. They must stop pussyfooting around this fact. It needs to be latd bare. It needs to be addressed. America must be mature and once and for all get rid of this millstone or America will never realise its full potential. Leadership must be based on Character and Competence, on Integrity and Intellect , not on shallowness, not on ignorance masquerading as knowledge, not on the politics of personality and style but on substance and expertise. This is necessary now, more than ever.
Someone once said that " it is not true that all conservatives are stupid, What is true is most of those who are conservatives are stupid ". The campaign in both Canada and U.S.A by the Ref/Cons and the Republicans have revealed the depth of that styupidity.
Here in Canada, we have had the " poop ", then the Agriculture Minister and " cold cuts " and wishing for the death of his Liberal critic, followed by the reference to drunken "natives " and now Julie's book on the buffoon Bernier and revealations that even when her $ 1000 cheque bounced, the Ref/ Cons still wanted her as a candidate for their party. Is it any wonder that Harper has put a muzzle on all his candidates and that he appears so listless in the debates? He looks more like a wax doll. This is not helped by his droll statemants nor by the fact that he is afraid to publish his platform. Now his statement that most Canadians are conservatives (it is that stupid factor ), can be understood. Canadians are not stupid or even ignorant. They are aware of the issues of the economy, the environment, the war in Afghanistan and his social agenda.
With a week to go, you can begin to see the drip, drip of collapsing support. They will not form a majority govt. As a matter of fact they will not even win as many seats as in the last election. Their Quebec gamble has failed, and even in Ontario and B.C. , they are losing supoport.
The attack on Obama will get dirtier. The Republicans are desperate. Palin has been a disaster except among the diehards, who are not noted for their grasp of reality. The stupid factor is even more apparent here. Folksiness and joe six- pack, rule the roost with them . Spying Russia from a small hamlet in Alaska, which Palin has not even visited and having breakfast at the International House of Pancakes, or meeting Karzai ( who controls a few streets in Kabul ) or Talabani, the token symbol of unity in Iraq ( not eeraq ) or Uribe ( whose party members are implicated in the drug cartels, or visitig Kissinger, who prolonged the war in Vietnam ,so Nixon could win the 1972 election or Mr. 10% Zardari ( the gusher whom she captivated with her leering smile ), or setting foot in the U.N. does not constitute foreign policy expertise, except amongst the stupids.
McCAIN IS DESPERATE. He has given up in Michigan, is losing in Ohio and is trailing in Pennsylvannia and Florida and is being outspent in the toss-up states of N. Carolina. New Mexico, Nevada etc. Expect the attacks to be more vicious....questioning Obama's patriotism, attacks on his relationships real or imagined and of course the race issue . The gloves are off and " Bully " McCain and " Barracuda Palin " are going for broke.
The fallout from Wall Street's collapse was a consequence of many factors and has resulted in the U.S.A. losing its central role and the rise of new powers.......Americas creditors. Here are some repercussions:-
1. The era of U.S. leadership is over. 2. The free markety philosophy has self-destructed. 3. An entire model of govt. and the economy has collapsed. 4.While lecturing other countries and forcing them to adopt its model ( Argentina, Thailand, Indonesia etc.), the U.S. was using a different policy for itself.....borrowing extensively to finance sweeping tax cuts and its military adventures.... Iarq and Afghanistan . 5. Those countries which refused to follow the U.S. model eg. Russia , China will shape U.S. economic future, because the U.S. will be even more dependent on the flow of foreign capital. 6. Blaming greedy banks may resonate on Main street, but it is these " blamers ",in Congress who allowed Wall Street to operate in their free wheeling way, by their ideology of deregulation. 7. The world's new rising powers.....China, Russia, the Gulf States etc.who buy huge amounts of government bonds, may become more cautious about continuing to finance the U.S. for fear that they may not be repaid. 8. The fall of empires result from wars and debt.......the British after WW1 and the USSR after Afghanistan and Star War expenditure, are two recent examples.
The U.S. saddled with two costly wars and huge debt, is no different. While it may continue, at least for a while, to be the world's largest economy,it is coming to an end. Laissez faire capitalism has imploded. Matrket economies that refused to follow U.S. style deregulation will survive.
This crisis was produced by a toxic mix of special interests, misguided economics and right wing ideologies. This has created a mess and U.S. economy was not helped by decaying infrastructure and two bloody/costly wars.
Bailout that rely on " trickle down economics "will not work. Giving money to Wall Street will not trickle down to Main Street. They made bad loans ( housing bubble ) on inflated prices and these prices will fall further, causing even more foreclosures. These bad loans created huge holes in banks balance sheets and this must be repaired.
Credit will be hard to get......causing buisnesses to cut back, jobs will be lost, investment will stagnate and economic slowdown and Recession will result.
What must be done? 1. Make housing more affordable for workiong poor and middle income Americans...... give some form of tax credit and lower mortgage cost. 2. Create a new regulatory system to monitor the market and 3. Bankruptcy reform is needed to allow homeowners to stay in their homes....eg. the Government can assume part of a mortgage .
Thiswill bring about some confidence and encourage the people. Consumer spending will gradually increase and this, not trickle down economics, will work to revitalise the the marketplace.