Whack a Weasel Candidates

So, what’s going on with presidential politics these days? The Republican frontrunner, Mitt Romney drops out, McCain becomes the favorite. The highly touted Fred Thompson and Rudy Giuliani are virtually no shows.

[Dan Carlin picked Giuliani as the Republican winner in Common Sense 109. At least his candidate actually was in the race. Bush didn’t even voice an opinion on candidates, a nearly unprecedented event, and consequently no one from his presidency stepped forward to run. So no Condi vs. Hillary in 2008. Ah, well. ]

McCain is probably the only Republican running that could loose to Hillary.

Obama and Clinton can’t play nice in the sandbox, and the Democrat voters can’t decide which one of them they really want to support. My money is still on Hillary, but I’m hoping I’m wrong. Like the Republican field, half of the Democrat candidates have dropped out already.

Hillary is probably the only Democrat running that could loose to McCain.

It’s like a game of Whack a Mole, or Whack a Weasel.

[another nod to Dan Carlin (110, 111) for giving the candidates their proper mascot. Weasels is what they are, when they change their opinions about any policy issue depending on what audience they are in front of; and 9/10’s of the candidates do this without blushing]

The candidate’s head pops up, and they get smacked down again. Except we’ll probably still end up having to choose between weasels when it comes to the major parties. I’m not sure how two such unpopular people could ever get this far in a beauty contest like the presidential election.

Here’s hoping that the rumors about Ron Paul are correct. At least I’ll still have someone to vote for then.

McCain: The Myth of a Maverick

Matt Welch has written a book that, if I was into reading books on political figures I have only a marginal interest in (McCain has always been just another weasel to me) I would probably find fascinating.

But, his discussion at CATO about the book was quite revealing about the character of McCain. Not exactly the type of guy I’d want as president. Not even vaguely. Here’s the video:



Like I said, I don’t have much of an opinion on the subject of McCain, but perhaps I should have since it looks like Republican voters are going to hand him the nomination. Not that he can win against either of the Democrat frontrunners with the pro-war stance that he currently has.

The CATO daily podcast brought the subject back to the forebrain today. I had listened to the event podcast weeks ago and pretty much forgotten it until today.

Ron Paul is my recommended candidate

Which is what I figured. The local news station (KVUE) I watch has a candidate selector (that includes Ron Paul, if not third party candidates) and after honestly answering the questions I discovered that Ron Paul is the only candidate that scored higher than 50% (67, to be precise) agreement with my views.

When I answered the questions for the Select Smart candidate selector, Ron Paul came up second (76%) after an LP candidate (Kent McManigal 89%) whose candidacy has been suspended. None of the other candidates listed at the National LP site are on any of the selectors that I’ve seen, but that really doesn’t surprise me either; although why the potential LP candidates can’t be listed alongside the potential R & D candidates is beyond me. But that’s about par for the course these days.

Which is why the inclusion of Ron Paul is a beacon of hope for those of us who really understand what is at stake in this election. Not that I think that beacon will be lit for that much longer, I’m just enjoying it while it lasts…

Ron Paul Unplugged

Two of my favorite people, one interviewing the other. John Stossel did a series of web interviews with Ron Paul, all of them quite interesting. Here’s an excerpt of the intro:

Despite relatively low poll numbers, Paul has had a big influence on the presidential campaign. That’s in part because he’s raised a ton of money, and in part because of the passionate following he has on the Web. It’s one reason we’re posting my interview with Paul only on the Internet, where the debate about Paul is very active. In fact, he’s the most Googled presidential candidate.

read more | digg story

You can go on to read Stossel’s notes on the interviews, or watch them on the site. You can also watch them here.

Paul: Fox News is ‘scared of me’

Yet another attempt to exclude minority opinions, even when those opinions carry the name of a major party:

PLAISTOW, N.H. — Ron Paul said the decision to exclude him from a debate on Fox News Sunday the weekend before the New Hampshire Primary is proof that the network “is scared” of him.

“They are scared of me and don’t want my message to get out, but it will,” Paul said in an interview at a diner here. “They are propagandists for this war and I challenge them on the notion that they are conservative.”

Paul’s staff said they are beginning to plan a rally that will take place at the same time the 90-minute debate will air on television. It will be taped at Saint Anselm College in Goffstown.

“They will not win this skirmish,” he promised.

The Fox debate occurs less than 24 hours after two back to back Republican and Democratic debates on the same campus sponsored by ABC News, WMUR-TV and the social networking website Facebook.

Paul, the Republican Texas Congressman, was wrapping up his final day of campaigning in New Hampshire until the Iowa Caucuses on Thursday.

He spent much of the day campaigning at diners in Manchester and Plaistow and downtown walks in Derry and Exeter.

read more | digg story

Those who prefer to exclude opinions they disagree with will cite poll numbers as the reason that Dr. Paul does not rate inclusion in the debate; but polls are representative of what respondents thought of the questions asked; nothing more and nothing less. When the polls are unbiased and inclusive, Dr. Paul ranks much higher than the 3 to 4 percent that is often cited. Fox has no business excluding him for any reason other than fear of what he represents, a groundswell of revolt against the current system.

As a corporate representative of that system (as all publicly held corporations are) they have every right to be afraid; but their fear shows their bias, and it also shows just how much “fair and balanced” is worth at Fox Noise.

Not very much.

It is the opinions that are being excluded here (anti-war Republican, Austrian economics, limited government candidate) not the person of Dr. Paul. If these are your values as well as Dr. Paul’s, then you need to get behind him and show your support.

Change is coming in this country, make no mistake about that. Make sure it’s the right kind of change.


I’m beginning to think that the inhabitants over at digg are just a bunch of children. There’s a flag on the first message I stumbled across questioning the accuracy of the information.

…And yet, even Ron Paul’s website acknowledges the truth as far as they know it:

Press Releases: Has Fox News Excluded Ron Paul?

December 28, 2007 10:39 pm EST

ARLINGTON, VIRGINIA – According to the New Hampshire State Republican Party and an Associated Press report, Republican presidential candidate and Texas Congressman Ron Paul will be excluded from an upcoming forum of Republican candidates to be broadcast by Fox News on January 6, 2008.

“Given Ron Paul’s support in New Hampshire and his recent historic fundraising success, it is outrageous that Dr. Paul would be excluded,” said Ron Paul 2008 campaign chairman Kent Snyder. “Dr. Paul has consistently polled higher in New Hampshire than some of the other candidates who have been invited.”

Snyder continued, “Paul supporters should know that we are continuing to make inquiries with Fox News as to why they have apparently excluded Dr. Paul from this event.”

read more | digg story

So, what’s up digg? Are you vying to be as biased as Fox Noise?


The second press release on the subject:

December 30, 2007

Has Fox News Excluded Ron Paul? pt. 2

On December 27, the Associated Press reported: “The New Hampshire Republican Party is sponsoring a forum for Republican presidential candidates on Jan. 6, two days before the state’s first-in-the-nation primary.” Later in the article, the AP stated: “Participating in the forum will be Rudy Giuliani, Mike Huckabee, John McCain, Mitt Romney and Fred Thompson.”

On the evening of December 28, Jared Chicoine and Jordan Brown of our New Hampshire campaign staff met in person with Fergus Cullen the New Hampshire GOP chairman to discuss whether or not Dr. Paul would be invited to participate in the forum. Mr. Cullen confirmed there will be an event on January 6, but he could not confirm whether or not Dr. Paul would be invited. We also learned the event would not be a debate with an audience, but instead would be a forum in a closed studio with the candidates questioned only by Chris Wallace of Fox News.

A few hours after that meeting, we contacted Fox News seeking clarification. Later that night, we issued a press release while waiting to hear from Fox News.

On December 29, the Baltimore Sun featured a report by Jason George. Mr. George reported, “Calls and emails to Fox News spokespersons by the Tribune were not returned Saturday evening.

“An official at the New Hampshire GOP, which is co-sponsoring the event with Fox, said that Paul might still be included, but the planning for the debate was still coming together and it was ultimately Fox’s call.”

As of late afternoon today (December 30), we have nothing more to report.

Kent Snyder
Chairman, Ron Paul 2008

read more | digg story


The third press release:

December 31, 2007

Has Fox News Excluded Ron Paul? pt. 3

Fergus Cullen, chairman of the New Hampshire Republican Party, issued a press release this afternoon about Fox News’ presidential candidates forum scheduled for January 6. His release is below.

We thank Mr. Cullen for his statement today and for his efforts with Fox News.

*****
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Date: December 31, 2007

Contact: Fergus Cullen, Chairman, New Hampshire Republican Party

NH REPUBLICANS: DON’T LIMIT DEBATE PARTICIPANTS

CONCORD – New Hampshire Republican Party Chairman Fergus Cullen releases the following statement regarding primary weekend debates:

“Limiting the number of candidates who are invited to participate in debates is not consistent with the tradition of the first in the nation primary. The level playing field requires that all candidates be given an equal opportunity to participate – not just a select few determined by the media prior to any votes being cast.”

“Therefore, the New Hampshire Republican Party calls upon all media organizations planning pre-primary debates or forums for both parties to include all recognized major candidates in their events.”

“The New Hampshire Republican Party has notified FOX News of our position, and we are in ongoing discussions with FOX News about having as many candidates as possible participate in the forum scheduled for January 6.”

read more | digg story

2008 Election Gear

From the guy who brought us the definitive political argument, we now have the definitive political tickets. J. Michael Straczinsky has struck, once again.

I’ll put my money on G’kar/Lando, myself, although the Zathrus/Zathrus ticket does have the definitive plus of being totally incomprehensible on all subjects, making it impossible to pin them down when they contradict themselves (unlike certain Democrat ‘frontrunners’)


The first slate is Londo/G’Kar (or, for those who wish to be contrary, G’Kar/Londo is also available.) They bring a combination of military training, a love of freedom, and sartorial excellences. They are also excellent public speakers and true patriots who put their people ahead of their own interests. Should the electorate find themselves not happy with the slate as elected, whoever is in second position will gladly assassinate the other in order to bring about a referendum.

Similarly, the ticket of Zathras and Zathras promises the best in crisis management at a difficult time for our nation. Their wisdom is inscrutable (also incomprehensible), their dedication to detail is almost frightening, and in times of economic belt-tightening by electing one Zathras you elect all Zathras, nine for the price of the One.

And a weary nation sighs its relief….


Either ticket stands more of a chance of being elected than any of the slate of candidates offered up by the Republicans (and that includes unfortunately, Ron Paul, whose yard sign is currently visible in my front yard) which makes this election more of a yawner than most…

read more | digg story

Rigging the Beauty Pageant?

I read an excellent opinion piece today (Paul Krugman: “Fearing Fear Itself”) on why none of the “front runners” amongst the Republican candidates stands a snowball’s chance in hell of winning the next election:

…Franklin Delano Roosevelt urged the nation not to succumb to “nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror.” But that was then.

Today, many of the men who hope to be the next president — including all of the candidates with a significant chance of receiving the Republican nomination — have made unreasoning, unjustified terror the centerpiece of their campaigns.

Consider, for a moment, the implications of the fact that Rudy Giuliani is taking foreign policy advice from Norman Podhoretz, who wants us to start bombing Iran “as soon as it is logistically possible.”

Mr. Podhoretz, in short, is engaging in what my relatives call crazy talk. Yet he is being treated with respect by the front-runner for the G.O.P. nomination. And Mr. Podhoretz’s rants are, if anything, saner than some of what we’ve been hearing from some of Mr. Giuliani’s rivals.

Most Americans have now regained their balance. But the Republican base, which lapped up the administration’s rhetoric about the axis of evil and the war on terror, remains infected by the fear the Bushies stirred up…

read more | digg story

Only Ron Paul stands a chance of winning against the Democrats this time around, and he’s rapidly being shown the door by the core of the Republican party, who don’t want to hear that their fears are baseless.

This is shaping up like all of the other Presidential elections that I’ve witnessed. I don’t know why anyone pays attention to this stuff anymore. The throwing of the election by one party or the other, by offering up a candidate that only the core of the party would ever vote for (gun-controlling Mondale, socialist snoopy Dukakis, dead fish Dole, wooden Gore, lying Kerry) and with third party candidates excluded from real participation; they essentially hand the election to the other major party. With the exceptions of the elections of 1980 and 1996, there was never any question in my mind who was going to win.

[…and I really don’t want to hear about irregularities in the statistical ties that have dominated the 21st century elections. I’m well aware of the problems, they just aren’t relevant to the candidates chosen by the dominant parties, and the purposes behind their choice]

In all the other elections it seemed clear to me that the “opposition party” had chosen a candidate that was guaranteed to loose. It’s not as hard as you might imagine, to do this. The average Joe wants to vote for a winner (don’t ask me why that is, but I’ve talked to enough people, and seen enough data to know this is true) and the primaries can be reasonably easy to manipulate by excluding unwanted candidates and orchestrating media exposure (as was done to last elections Democrat favorite) so as to show your ‘favored’ candidate as winning early enough to start the landslide.

This is clearly shaping up to be a ‘handover’ election (no matter what Ol’ Joey, the Republican mouthpiece has to say about it) which is why the Democrat candidates feel secure enough to tell us all about their expensive and invasive social programs in advance (programs that the Republican front runners strangely feel the urge to parrot, albeit to a lesser extent) so that the election, when it occurs, will be a mandate for handing health care (and possibly control of the internet) over to the federal government.

Beauty pageants disguised as good government (election is just a popularity contest, after all) It might be more interesting if the candidates weren’t so old and wrinkly.

… And if the designated winner wasn’t transparently obvious.

Why the Democrats are NOT a Viable Opposition to the Administration

Watch the three minute video, then read on.

Ralph Nader: “Things Are a Lot Worse than We Thought!” – Published on Oct 11, 2007

If they refuse to act because they believe this is true, then it is pointless to support any sitting democrat. But if you look at it from the opposite perspective, Bush is on a mission from God. Do you really think he’ll let those godless Democrats get in his way?

Anyway.

On Digg this video has lead to a series of observations about the meaning of Nader’s comments, and flames against Nader for ruining the election, not once but twice, by being a candidate and costing the Democrats the election (never mind that the same can be said of the Libertarian candidates as well from the Republican side of the duopoly, and that the only solution to this problem is to negate the possibility of free and fair elections in the US) and the usual mindless support for the next successor to the duopoly’s undisturbed rule of the US since Lincoln brought the Republicans to power in 1860.

Comments like this one:

“At least Obama’s staying the fuck out of Iran and has taken nuclear weapons off the table”

This is obviously his first election experience. Nothing the candidate says has any bearing on what the elected President does. Go back and review the election promises of every candidate who became President, and you’ll understand.

I realize that this is not popularly understood, but the President is one man. There are thousands of people who work at the Federal level, who were there before the President gets elected, and will be there after he leaves. They set policy, which the elected President is expected to endorse, to some degree.

All of the modern Presidents (since at least Hoover) have had the majority of their agendas set for them by the conditions of the government and the world at the time they take office. It will take a maverick to change the course even in the slightest degree. There’s only one maverick running as a candidate at the moment, and he’s a Republican.

Keeping the political colors straight

Getting dizzy listening to the major party politics these days?

Are you ready for the ramp up to election day, just a few short months away?

I don’t know about you, but the pointlessness of 9/10ths of all political arguments reminds me of a scene from an episode of Babylon 5 “Geometry of Shadows. The following is from a synopsis of it:

Ivanova is meeting with a representative group of Drazi. Five Drazi with purple kerchiefs sit in the gallery to her left, and five of the greens to the right. A leader stands in front of each group.

Ivanova: As you all know, we’re having a bit of a problem here right now — the aforementioned problem being that you keep trying to beat each other senseless with blunt instruments, banging up against the bulkhead, pounding, mugging, jumping, and generally carrying on cranky. Now, while some of the other species wouldn’t mind if you wiped each other out, even they would prefer that you did so quietly. But — this station is dedicated to the goal of finding peaceful solutions to our problems. And we would like to find one here. [This causes quite some murmuring among her audience.] Now you can start by helping me to understand the precise nature of the conflict between the two sides that you’ve set up.

The two leaders react with pained longsuffering expressions. They have to explain something that is so obvious it needs no explanation. They’re dealing with a complete moron.

Purple leader [gesturing at the Green leader]: Green!

Green leader [returning the compliment]: Purple!

Ivanova: No, I understand that there are two factions, but what is your point of contention? Where do you disagree with each other?

Green leader [pointing and speaking more emphatically]: Purple!

Purple leader: Green!

Ivanova: Yes, but who gets to wear the purple sash and who gets to wear the green sash? I mean, is it based on income, or caste, or rank, or…

Green leader: We put green and purple in great barrel! Equal to numbers of Drazi. Then we reach in, we take! Where there was one Drazi people, now there are two! The two fight until there are one!

Ivanova [open-mouthed in astonishment]: That’s it? It’s totally random? Arbitrary? Well then, how do you choose a leader for either side?

Purple leader: One purple and one green carries mark of leadership. He who takes leader cloth is leader. He who takes green is Green, and follows Green leader. He who takes purple is Purple, and follows Purple leader. [Ivanova catches on sufficiently to lip-sync most of the last sentence.]

Ivanova: Okay, so in other words —- [She steps between the leaders and points out the two nearest Purple and Green followers.] Would you two please step forward for a moment — please? [They’re a bit confused, but they comply.] Okay, so what you’re trying to tell me is that if I take this purple sash off of him, [she takes the sash — much to the consternation of the remaining Purples] and put it onto him, [she puts it onto the Green — agitating all the Drazi, but she’s a bit too wrapped up in her question to notice as she turns to face the leaders] that this one thing alone is enough to start a…

…Bedlam ensues.

Full synopsis
Lurker’s guide episode entry

So, when you hear people yelling about ‘war records’ or ‘tax cuts’ or anything else political (which involves most everything these days, what with the expansion of gov’t) Just remember: “Who takes green, is green, follows green leader.” It’s just that simple.