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Hagel questions Palin's experience

Justin Webb | 15:46 UK time, Thursday, 18 September 2008

This is important - removed from all the internet-based nonsense, this kind of thing will have an effect on independents.

Comments

  • 1. At 4:11pm on 18 Sep 2008, SaintDominick wrote:

    What Sen. (R) Chuck Hagel is saying regarding Sarah Palin's experience and qualifications should be obvious to everyone. Unfortunately, her appeal to mainstream America is not caused by her competence but by charisma and her ability to connect with the middle class. She is viewed as one of us, a person with the same strengths and weaknesses we have, by a large segment of the electorate, the same way President Bush was so appealing because many considered him the kind of guys we would feel comfortable having a beer with.
    Barring further deterioration of our fiscal and economic situation, which is very likely, McCain has a good chance of winning in November, and Gov Palin will be a short step from the Oval Office. Scary thought!

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  • 2. At 4:14pm on 18 Sep 2008, Gary_A_Hill wrote:

    It's certainly much more significant when a distinguished Republican officeholder says it.

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  • 3. At 4:23pm on 18 Sep 2008, Ptrsln wrote:

    Experience and credentials are not what's really important here. Neither Palin or Obama have real foreign policy experience, and McCain's is minimal. Biden seems to be the only one with any real experience.

    (A question for anyone out there: Has McCain sat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee? The only information I have found tells me he hasn't been a member since 2003 and has never chaired it. )

    But experience doesn't matter as much as knowledge. As long as they are up to speed in foreign affairs, they should be able to govern adequately. This is the problem that Palin has. She has not demonstrated any knowledge of foreign policy, and responds to questions with memorized sound bites.

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  • 4. At 4:24pm on 18 Sep 2008, wheelright wrote:

    Dear American friends, it's your country so of course you can vote for who you like.

    If, however, you reject the outstanding candidate of a generation and vote for the old duffer and the mad librarian, the rest of the world will give up on you.

    You may not care about this but, in a shrinking world, it isn't advantageous when your country's name is mentioned to met by a resigned sigh and a shake of the head.

    The rest of the world is pretty thin re outstanding candidates so imagine the frustration when we see one and fear he may not be given a chance.

    He may end up being a weak, vain fool of the Blair type but I don't think he is and we'll never know unless you give him a go.

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  • 5. At 4:24pm on 18 Sep 2008, Mark wrote:

    It would have more of an effect if he endorsed Obama, but any sane assessment by someone who is respected is helpful. In fact, there have been a slew of GOP supporters questioning the wisdom of choosing Palin in the last few days: like a firework she has burst and blazed brightly, but is already starting to fade.

    However, the real issue, which you are continuing to neglect, is not Palin but the arrival of the recession. It is quite clear that the US economy is in serious trouble and that things will get worse in the next seven weeks. The GOP will be fighting a serious economic downturn and that means that underlying sentiment will drift against them: it is harder to swim against the tide of history. Further, neither the next unemployment nor the inflation figures will be pretty, and the markets write-downs will continue.

    They've managed to stabilise things today, perhaps; but only by pouring billions into the system. At some time that has got to stop unless rampant inflation is the price they are prepared to pay. Even Morgan Stanley is thinking about a merger before it is too late. What Obama needs to do is explain what has happened to Main St in a way that makes sense.

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  • 6. At 4:33pm on 18 Sep 2008, frayedcat wrote:

    I think SP demonstrates a lack of insight, thought, clarity or judgment before she blurts out these inarticulate responses to questions about her foreign policy experience. She keeps saying she doesn't and won't blink - I would much prefer a Vice President who thinks long and hard, and does a little research, before pushing any buttons. Stupidity is not improved by decisive stupidity.

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  • 7. At 4:37pm on 18 Sep 2008, TimothyR444 wrote:

    Chuck Hagel is an outstanding politician and a man of integrity and courage. It's a shame that he is not running for president.

    It's true that Palin does not have the background or the qualifications. But then again, neither does Obama.

    It's frustrating to see Hagel, who is so obviously qualified, not running.

    Instead we have the bitter McCain, who is no longer the maverick he was, or the ludicrous Obama, who is a shallow and narcissistic celebrity living in a fantasy world.

    Hagel would make an outstanding president.

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  • 8. At 4:45pm on 18 Sep 2008, Candace9839 wrote:

    Hagel is not the first conservative to question her credentials, but a voice that may get people's attention on the subject
    'Allo 'allo

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  • 9. At 4:46pm on 18 Sep 2008, ear-to-the-ground wrote:

    Looks like hagel is the Democrats Lieberman. ok, he's not endoursing obama, but to openly question Pailin is pretty much doing the same thing.

    its about time that someone responded to the rediculous notion that she had foreign policy credentials just because Russia is close to Alaska.

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  • 10. At 4:47pm on 18 Sep 2008, The Notting Hill Hammer wrote:

    Interesting quote from the horse's mouth in this article:

    Palin herself has addressed the question of her foreign policy experience in a recent interview with ABC News.

    "We've got to remember what the desire is in this nation at this time," she said. "It is for no more politics as usual, and somebody's big, fat résumé, maybe, that shows decades and decades in that Washington establishment where, yes, they've had opportunities to meet heads of state."
    ........................

    So that's McCain out of the running then. Palin has just succintly stated why Obama should win the election.

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  • 11. At 4:55pm on 18 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    Justin,
    thanks for the credit eh! Way to go. I am glad I could be of help!
    Cheers!

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  • 12. At 5:01pm on 18 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/donald-craig-mitchell/this-weeks-palin-primer-f_b_127074.html

    The deal behind Bristol's hubby?
    SmartTTTTT EH?

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  • 13. At 5:25pm on 18 Sep 2008, blewinfromsomewhere wrote:

    If you are going to moderate all the comments, try to work just a tad faster!
    It looks at first sight that you as censor have pulled every comment off the board!

    4.14 pm to 5.01 pm is a long gap! If you can't do it all the time, why not put up a message announcing the times when moderation will be carried out?

    Thanks.

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  • 14. At 5:27pm on 18 Sep 2008, MarcusAureliusII wrote:

    Funny, every one of Obama's Democratic opponents said the same and worse of him during the primaries...and now they endorse him. HRC said he wasn't qualified to be Commander-in-Chief. Either their words were worthless then or they are worthless now....or both. Of the four people who are running for President and Vice President in the two major parties, none has any understanding of the economy. But then neither does most of Congress, the current President, nor apparently Alan Greenspan. Barney Franks was interviewed by Charlie Rose last night. He opposed the deregulation of the financial institutions Greenspan advocated and Congress passed in the 1990s under Clinton which led directly to the current financial crisis. Whether you agree with McCain's or Obama's reactive prescription for how to fix it, there is no denying that neither of them predicted this during the last year while the debates were going on. That is because they didn't see it coming. There's plenty of blame to go around for both Republicans and Democrats, Presidents and Congress in more than one administration. So if nobody running understands the economy, why worry about the fact that they don't understand foreign policy either?

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  • 15. At 5:31pm on 18 Sep 2008, LongStrangeTrip wrote:

    I think I worry most about her susceptibility to the Cheneys and the Roves in government, her ability to stand up to that crowd. We're not talking about an "old boy network" in some backwater state where moxie might carry you for a few rounds in a fight.

    John McCain, the "Original Maverick" and 26-year veteran senator, has done a 180-degree turn for men like this in the last year or two and dance to their tune; how will a political neophyte from Alaska do against them if she unexpectedly becomes president? I think she'd be more of a pushover than Bush has been.

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  • 16. At 5:35pm on 18 Sep 2008, Gary_A_Hill wrote:

    Judgment is what matters, not specific experience. The President is assisted by many others around him. The advisors he chooses is an indication of his judgment. Obama chose as his candidate for VP someone who will be a knowledgable contributor to the National Security Council. McCain chose someone who will not.

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  • 17. At 5:36pm on 18 Sep 2008, detroitarsenal wrote:

    As some one from the so called middle class whose wage is now less than it was 8 years ago, travelling over 60 miles to and from work each day and living in Michigan. McCain and in particular Palin have said nothing on how they are going to fix the ecomomy, all I seen and heard are attacks on Obama on how he single handed has caused the recession and high gas prices because he does not agree with off shore drilling?
    Palin runs a state that has a smaller population than many of the counties here in West Michigan. Lets hope they don't get in.

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  • 18. At 5:36pm on 18 Sep 2008, SaintDominick wrote:

    People should bear in mind that the comments that Sen. McCain made about Spain were made in Florida, in front of an audience of Cuban-Americans who represent the most extreme views of the GOP right wing. The comments have nothing to do is senility or ignorance of world geography (I don't think he mistook Spain for Venezuela or Bolivia), but with the audacity of the Spanish people when they voted Aznar out, the cocker spaniel that joined poodle Blair and their master W, in the initial invasion of Iraq. Their audacity became sacrilege when they voted in a socialist as PM who then had the nerve of encouraging investments throughout Latin America, including Venezuela and Cuba of all places! I doubt the neocons will forget, and much less forgive, that decision any time soon.

    JohnAAA. You may want to consider the tack taken by savvy GOP politicians to explain McCain's acknowledge ignorance of computers and the Internet: the reason he doesn't use them is because of his injuries while he was a POW. The explanation not only deflects Dem criticism, it makes it unpatriotic.

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  • 19. At 5:41pm on 18 Sep 2008, wanderingangus wrote:



    Chuck Hagel's comments are certainly important but they are also plain obvious.

    There is no comparison with Obama who is quite evidently a deep thinker who has spent years preparing himself for this campaign(witness his two books WHICH HE WROTE HIMSELF). And earning your political spurs on the mean streets of Chicago is very different to Wasilla.

    I work closely in the UK with people who have for years held positions similar to Palin's (although with larger populations than Alaska) involved. They are unanimous in saying that they would consider that their party leader had lost his marbles if they were plucked from their post at a day's notice to be a potential Deputy Prime Minister.

    Sarah Palin probably has many talents which make her suitable for the Governorship of Alaska. The greatest proof of her lack of insight into the suitablity of translating those talents overnight into a potential VP lies in the fact that she understood so little that she was prepared to accept McCain's reckless offer.

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  • 20. At 5:45pm on 18 Sep 2008, Rod Stark wrote:

    In response to #1 above, I agree that is why many Americans like Palin. But surely we want a president who is not just average. Our presidents should in general, I hope, be smarter than the average citizen; that's why we elect them to do the job. Otherwise we might as well go to the model of Classical Athens and choose our leaders by lottery from the population at large.

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  • 21. At 5:51pm on 18 Sep 2008, cannonballmartin wrote:

    At the article's bottom was a revealing comment about Obama's own vp mate not just questioning but slamming his lack of foreign policy experience. This seems a much bigger deal to me.

    And, really, one has to ask what the hell they're doing running together if it's not just a ploy to get votes. If Biden didn't think he was ready in the primaries, then what has changed that? He's either a liar or the two are pandering for votes.

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  • 22. At 5:53pm on 18 Sep 2008, TimothyR444 wrote:


    "If, however, you reject the outstanding candidate of a generation and vote for the old duffer and the mad librarian, the rest of the world will give up on you.

    You may not care about this but, in a shrinking world, it isn't advantageous when your country's name is mentioned to met by a resigned sigh and a shake of the head."

    Dear Wheelright:

    You must realize that these threats and accusations have been going on for several years now, and that we have become accustomed to the ugliness of anti-Americanism and the demands of other nations to vote according to what you want.

    The effect of all those instults is weating thinn.

    McCain and Obama are both pathetic candidates. Obama is merely a pompous, wealthy celebrity who is enormously popular because he represents a weak and masochistic America groveling at Europe's feet. McCain is all the way in the opposite direction, and equally feeble.

    I would like to have a dignified, mature, balanced, intelligent, seasoned candidate like Hagel, but all we have are two clowns to choose from.

    Surely Britain must have its own concerns? I wonder what the response would be if Americans decided to make demands of the people of Britain: lecturing, insulting, ridiculing, and telling you how to vote at the top of our lungs?

    How would you respond?

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  • 23. At 6:07pm on 18 Sep 2008, dceilar wrote:

    I have a feeling Justin that's the last we'll hear from him in a while. The Republican machine is going to hide him away somewhere, probably Alaska.

    Let's hope the Democrats milk this holy cow of a story!

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  • 24. At 6:49pm on 18 Sep 2008, wanderingangus wrote:

    # 23

    No one has mentioned that Chuck Hagel was one of the two Senators who accompanied Obama on his trip to Iraq in July.

    He has already said that he will not seek re-election to the Senate in 2010. He also said publicly that he would be happy to be considered as an Obama running mate - which sort of sends a message about what he thinks of his current Republican colleagues.

    I think we can can take it as read that he has come out for Obama.

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  • 25. At 6:50pm on 18 Sep 2008, David Cunard wrote:

    #22. TimothyR444: "I wonder what the response would be if Americans decided to make demands of the people of Britain: lecturing, insulting, ridiculing, and telling you how to vote at the top of our lungs?"

    Since the voters of the United Kingdom do not and cannot vote for an individual as head of government, the issue can never come about. Britons vote for policy - the three largest parties all publish a manifesto (platform) of their proposals should they form the next government. Remember, there are no political television commercials there and, here in the USA, personalities are much more of an issue. If we in America were limited to a number of five minute 'party political broadcasts' then perhaps some civility might return to the campaigns.

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  • 26. At 6:51pm on 18 Sep 2008, Gary_A_Hill wrote:

    cannonballmartin (#21), both campaigns try to score points with this line of attack, but practically everyone else understands that remarks of this nature made during a primary campaign are nothing but normal politically motivated statements.

    I wouldn't call them "lies" or "pandering." It's just ordinary politics, and a non-issue.

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  • 27. At 6:53pm on 18 Sep 2008, wanderingangus wrote:


    Timothy R444

    - If you don't like the debate on the site, then shove off back to an American one and leave us Brits to converse without a constant background buzz of abuse on our British site WHICH WE PAY FOR THROUGH OUR LICENCE FEES.

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  • 28. At 6:56pm on 18 Sep 2008, gunsandreligion wrote:

    #5, MarkFromOxford:

    Quite obviously you understand the basic economics
    which created the asset bubble which is now popping.
    But, I assure you, most Americans have no idea
    about what is happening. They have a vague
    sense of apprehension, but that is all. They have
    no understanding that the place of America in
    the world has forever changed because of
    gross mismanagement by the current administration
    and Congress.

    The way that the average person learns about
    such things is by experience, and we have only
    experienced relative prosperity since WWII.

    One of the major flaws of the Bush administration
    is that they did not ask for sacrifices from the
    American people. All I hear from Obama is
    a tax cut platform which is calculated to bring
    in the middle class vote.

    I don't hear anything from either candidate
    reflecting current realities.

    And, then, there is another problem with the
    Obama campaign, which is his image problem.
    It may not be obvious to someone as highly
    educated as yourself, but the US is a society
    which is run without intellectuals, in spite of
    our obviously intellectually gifted founders.

    We have only had an influx of intellectuals
    starting with WWII, and they have yet to make
    their mark on the interior of the country.

    Americans are really good at practical problem
    solving, but this does not generally require a
    modern world view. And, this is why we can
    wind up with a governer of a state as physically
    large as Alaska who thinks that the world was
    created in 6 days.


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  • 29. At 6:59pm on 18 Sep 2008, No Worries wrote:

    To TimothyR444

    You must realize that these threats and accusations have been going on for several years now...

    Threats and accusations? Most of us here don't see this, we see a perfectly reasonable observation. You may not believe it (and obviously don't care), but the rest of the world are starting to act like this when the USA is mentioned. And the rest of the world is not just Europe. There is nothing anti American in this at all, it's just an observation. trael a bit more, you'll know what I mean.

    Yes, I'm sure Britain has its own concerns, but as a nation that cherishes free speech Brits are allowed their opinion, especially on a British blog site! Again there is nothing in this post that is lecturing, insulting, ridiculing or telling you how to vote. Wheelwright obviously hopes that Obama gets the vote, but there is no lecturing. In fact I see written very clearly...Dear American friends, it's your country so of course you can vote for who you like...

    You need to relax my friend. You have unfortunately shown the world your political colors by the typical outburst and venom poured forth against anyone who disagrees with you. Carl Rove would be proud!

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  • 30. At 6:59pm on 18 Sep 2008, wheelright wrote:

    Hello Timothyr444. Don't take it personally. A poster a few weeks ago was offended by what he perceived to be condescending anti American comment. It wasn't - it was what we like to call free speech.

    He said how would we like it if we commented on British politicians? He should have a go. He wouldn't say anything we haven't said already.

    As Justin once said, the British don't care for politicians, whereas Americans try to like theirs.

    Of course we have our problems. Most of them caused by politicians. Whatever our many deficiencies, we don't mind poking fun at ourselves or having others do it to us or indeed doing to others also.

    A friend who moved to America has noticed this fearful oversensitivity and undeserved respect for politicians. Otherwise he loves it there and has no wish to return.

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  • 31. At 7:02pm on 18 Sep 2008, duhbuh wrote:

    Chuck "troops out" Hagel? Justin's embarrassing himself now. And as for his previous blog post in which he pleads that some of the anti-Palin stuff has gone over the top - well, coming from Webb the enabler that's almost as rich as the combined wealth of all of the Hollywood celebs who turned out for Obama the other day. The BBC's North America editor likes to portray himself as a standard-bearer against anti-Americanism but what he's really defending is America's coastal-dwelling, Democrat-voting liberal sophisticates. When it comes to the rednecks from the flyover states (and Alaska), he hates America as much as the next angry European with an ill-founded superiority complex. Fortunately the views of BBC commentators will have little effect on the presidential election. However, the BBC has worldwide reach like no other media organisation, and as soon as Palin became the VP choice Webb and his colleagues did their utmost to portray her as a hick. They helped write the narrative for the rest of the world: Palin is a throwback matriarch of a too-big family of banjo-plucking retards. There's barely a panel show or round-table discussion on the BBC which doesn't involve a combined assault on Palin, and that groupthink has been fed by BBC employees with their sneering dismissal of this remarkable woman's many achievements. One wouldn't know it from the BBC but it was Obama who thrived in the tainted, corrupt world of local party politics whereas Palin achieved her success by facing down similar vested interests in her party. And I wonder how many casual BBC listeners and viewers are aware that it's Joe Biden, not Palin, who can't keep his foot out of his mouth on the campaign trail. Not many, because that doesn't fit the narrative.

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  • 32. At 7:04pm on 18 Sep 2008, SaintDominick wrote:

    Ref 20

    That's why I am voting for Obama. I was simply voicing an opinion regarding the reasons why such a large number of Americans find Palin so appealing, and found W so acceptable. Charisma and mediocrity seem to be more important than vision and competence to many.
    I do wish, however, that the choices included seasoned leaders like FDR, able to look the American public in the eye and telling us the truth, instead of waltzing around the issues - and avoiding mentioning the solutions - because of fear we will not vote for them. Unfortunately, at a time in our history when we need a giant in the White House we are being offered lightweights that barely qualify for Mayor of a large city.
    We need one or two more political parties to ensure the entire spectrum of politics - and competence - is covered so that we don't have to chose between a clown from the right and one from the left.

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  • 33. At 7:10pm on 18 Sep 2008, gunsandreligion wrote:

    #31, duhbuh: nobody's paying attention to Biden,
    it doesn't matter what he says. Besides, Delaware
    is smaller than Alaska.

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  • 34. At 7:15pm on 18 Sep 2008, TimothyR444 wrote:

    If you don't like the debate on the site, then shove off back to an American one and leave us Brits to converse without a constant background buzz of abuse on our British site WHICH WE PAY FOR THROUGH OUR LICENCE FEES.

    wandering angus:

    Whether you like it or not, there are going to be Americans who show up here, as you are talking about Americans, our nation and our lives.

    I have no intention of "shoving off". I will speal up as I see fit. No doubt if you found an American site devoted to British elections, you would likely speak up there as well. That would obviously be your prerogative.

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  • 35. At 7:17pm on 18 Sep 2008, David Cunard wrote:

    #19. wanderingangus: "they would consider that their party leader had lost his marbles if they were plucked from their post at a day's notice to be a potential Deputy Prime Minister."

    I understand the drift of your argument, but must point out that the analogy is incorrect. A "Deputy Prime Minister" has no constitutional standing and if the prime minister of the day died or became incapacitated, the "Deputy" would not become head of government. In the event that there was no living 'party leader', The Queen would take advice and ask whoever was thought to be able to command a majority in the House of Commons to form a government in her name; I'm not at all sure that the deputy party leader would necessarily step into the post. At the present time, Gordon Brown has not appointed a Deputy Prime Minister.

    Nevertheless, you are correct that Mr McCain's offer was reckless - but that's what we have as part of the choice, hence the great interest in her background.

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  • 36. At 7:25pm on 18 Sep 2008, TimothyR444 wrote:

    Wheelright:

    "A friend who moved to America has noticed this fearful oversensitivity and undeserved respect for politicians. Otherwise he loves it there and has no wish to return. "

    I do not share this oversensitivity regarding politicians here in the US. I think both Obama and McCain are pathetic. I am fed up with the endless circus of the election year.

    Hagel is too good for us: he has too much dignity, wisdom, integrity and discretion. Even his refusal to endorse a candidate is impressive, as he refuses to give in to pressure.

    As for anti-Americanism: it is a strange and confusing experience to read the insulting remarks about Americans here on this blog. It is difficult not to take it personally. I had many positive experiences in Britain in the years before Bush. I don't recognize the Britain that is here on this blog.

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  • 37. At 7:27pm on 18 Sep 2008, Gary_A_Hill wrote:

    wanderingangus (#27), that's telling 'im (#22). I reread Wheelright's remarks, and I couldn't find any "demands" in it. I'm a US citizen, and I'd much rather read the remarks of a civilized Brit than an American boor. And, as you say, this is a British website.

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  • 38. At 7:33pm on 18 Sep 2008, Theowyn wrote:

    "#33. duhbuh: nobody's paying attention to Biden, it doesn't matter what he says. Besides, Delaware is smaller than Alaska."

    Yet, Alaska has the smaller population, 670,053 compared to Delaware's 853,476.


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  • 39. At 7:34pm on 18 Sep 2008, joshkin2001 wrote:

    I was born in Texas, raised on a farm where hunting was the best way to stretch the grocery money. I owned a horse and made "date money" by working working for the neighboring ranchers. Am I a "mid-west redneck"?

    I'm also Jesuit-educated, graduated Magna cum Laude with a science degree, traveled North America, Central America and Europe, speak three languages and am learning a fourth. Am I a "coastal liberal"?

    Considering that the greed of America's financial industry coupled with the economic stupidity of our government is crashing the rest of the world straight into recession, and the fact that the rest of the world holds the marker on a huge amount of our debt, I think any American who doesn't take foreign opinion into account when then vote this November is being criminally negligent.

    Palin is under-educated and narrow-minded. McCain is old and hidebound. Obama is smart and (probably) unscrupulous. Biden is old and hidebound. Since the old white guys pretty much cancel each other out, we're left with undereducated and narrow-minded versus smart and unscrupulous.

    Hobson's choice!

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  • 40. At 7:35pm on 18 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    WHY CAN'T MCCAIN DEFEND HIMSELF WITHOUT HAVING TO ATTACK OBAMA?

    WHY DOESN'T MCCAIN ANSWER A STRAIGHT QUESTION WITH A STRAIGHT ANSWER?

    WHAT DOES MCCAIN HAVE TO HIDE?

    WHY DOES THE MCCAIN CAMP ALWAYS INSISTS THAT MCCAIN "MEANT" TO SAY SOMETHING ELSE?

    IS AMERICA SUPPOSED TO UNDERSTAND MCCAIN FOR WHAT HE SAYS, OR FOR WHAT HE MEANS TO SAY BUT DOESN'T?

    WHY IS MCCAIN MAKING ENEMIES IN EUROPE?

    IS MACCAIN THE GOD JANUS COMING BACK TO EARTH?

    e-peace

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  • 41. At 7:39pm on 18 Sep 2008, gunsandreligion wrote:

    #38, Theowyn, that was actually a joke. But,
    the point that I was trying to make is that Biden
    is essentially the "invisible man" as far as the
    electorate is concerned. And, worse for the
    Democrats, he is an Easterner.

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  • 42. At 7:41pm on 18 Sep 2008, bajanlady wrote:

    I watch people, their expressions, body language. There is something about Palin that I have reservations about. An example; for all she says, it seems to me she has put her ambition ahead of her role as a mother. She has thrust her teenage daughter, [who must be going through a difficult period in her life and needs support] into intense media and public spotlight. I am sorry that just does not sit well with me. She comes across as condescending to public and media. My opinion is her choice is a pure political move. While I respect McCain for all he did in the past, he is not my choice for president at this time. I am not swayed by your color, creed or gender. I choose on the individual person.
    All 4 candidates have different qualifications, experiences and cannot be judged equally. The combination of Obama and Biden is far superior, a better mix of talents and balance than McCain and Palin.

    One of issues Americans should consider, is do they want to improve their international image? Do they want to interact and get better co-operation on the world stage? I firmly believe the world will react better to Obama and Biden, than McCain and Palin.

    If the Americans are swayed by superficiality and do not judge on deeper issues, if McCain and Palin are elected the Americans deserve what they get.

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  • 43. At 7:46pm on 18 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    JohnAAA has labeled mccain "mccain the uniter"

    I am seeing a sequel here:
    Anyone want to invest in the sequel:

    1) The rise and fall of student McCain
    2) Mission Impossible - The plane crasher
    3) The Vietnam years - A meeting with God
    4) The return of a "hero"
    5) Abandonment for riches
    5) The Senate's maverick
    6) Straight Talk 2000 - the Bush fight
    7) The De-Regulator
    8) The Return of the Reformed Maverick
    9) ....

    I am sorry John. I couldn't see where the uniter can come in. Considering he is out to accuse the same party he represents, which happens to be in power. WHen you give me a new word whose meaning you understand, I will see if i can use it.



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  • 44. At 7:46pm on 18 Sep 2008, Gary_A_Hill wrote:

    joshkin2001 (#39), actually, this is not a "Hobson's choice." Hobson's choice was take the horse that's offered or none at all.

    "Horns of a dilemma" might be more apt.

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  • 45. At 7:53pm on 18 Sep 2008, TimothyR444 wrote:

    Gary Hill:

    "I reread Wheelright's remarks, and I couldn't find any "demands" in it. I'm a US citizen, and I'd much rather read the remarks of a civilized Brit than an American boor. And, as you say, this is a British website."

    No doubt you will receive points from the Brits here for your attempts to ingratiate yourself. Nevertheless, there will be Americans who find this blog who refuse to be politically correct and will question the status quo here.

    The message is clear: Those who dare to question Obama need not apply. There is an extraordinary amount of hyper-sensitivity regarding Obama on this blog, reflected in a hysterical, cult-like adoration and worship.

    What do you say to those who dare to question him - or better yet, dare to question both candidates?

    An open mind is very helpful.

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  • 46. At 7:54pm on 18 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #40

    Stop shouting.

    Librarian Sam

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  • 47. At 7:59pm on 18 Sep 2008, seanspa wrote:

    What has McCain done to try to unite?

    Bipartisanship

    More bipartisanship warning - Fox News

    With the country split down the middle, it seems to me the only way to make progress rather than indulge in bunfights is to agree on what you can agree on and at least tackle those issues. I'm not aware of Obama reaching out in the same way, but I would be happy to hear otherwise.

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  • 48. At 8:00pm on 18 Sep 2008, proles wrote:

    "removed from all the internet-based nonsense" indeed...what a wry sense of self-deprecating humour! Almost as good as Hagel's own howler decrying lipstick smear (yes, pun) tactics because "It debases the system." And that's the whole point for Hagel, as well as, ironically enough, for Palin - and Obama and Biden, et.al. It's to keep the whole rotten, tightly-controlled, corporate Duopoly Party "system" going. That's what the whole sham 'election' is about, legitimising in popular imagination, "the system" That's what Hagel and other establishment figures are really worried about, not any lack of experience in foreign or other political affairs; but the fact that Palin will appear flaky and reflect back unfavorably on "the system"; or unwittingly (or wittingly) throw a spanner in the whole well-oiled machine of Duopoly Party rule. It's "the system" itself which debases popular democracy - and even more harmfully, debases international law, the UN Charter, the Geneva Conventions and any attempts by indigenous populations around the world to be free of American aggression and domination, so dear to sober establishment figures like Hagel. It is in fact, "the system" itself that is "debased", and if Palin can unintentionally help to discredit it, she may serve some higher purpose than the one intended of her.

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  • 49. At 8:00pm on 18 Sep 2008, wheelright wrote:

    TimothyR444. We really, really aren't being insulting. Honest. We are so polite in person that we relish the chance to be rumbustuous in print.

    We do comment adversely about our own shower of power cravers and their hangers on as we do about other peoples. They deserve it. It's good for them.

    The oversensitivity can often be about any aspect of American society. We tend to cast a rheumy eye over Britain anyway so it can be hard to offend us. This may not be mature or even desirable but there it is.

    I'm off to the pub now so I imagine by the time I surface this blog may well have expired. You had many positive experiences in Britain. I've always had positive experiences in America. We're even.

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  • 50. At 8:03pm on 18 Sep 2008, Gary_A_Hill wrote:

    TimothyR444 (#45), what I say is that any candidate for public office may be questioned in a civil way. I would also say that any person of any citizenship may express an opinion on a US election and should not be challenged for having expressed an opinion. (The opinion itself is, of course, fair game.)

    I do think it is out of place to make "demands" on citizens of other countries about how they conduct their political affairs, but I don't see much of that here.

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  • 51. At 8:09pm on 18 Sep 2008, TimothyR444 wrote:

    "One of issues Americans should consider, is do they want to improve their international image? Do they want to interact and get better co-operation on the world stage? I firmly believe the world will react better to Obama and Biden, than McCain and Palin.

    If the Americans are swayed by superficiality and do not judge on deeper issues, if McCain and Palin are elected the Americans deserve what they get."

    bajanlady:

    Yes, a positive international image is certainly a good thing. I quite agree that the Bush administration did a poor job there.

    But surely there is responsibility on both sides?

    There is a strong element of self-righteous fantasy in your comment. This blog is filled with comparable smug lectures. It may be helpful for you to consider your own nation, and what you must do. It is not enough to criticize and ridicule others. Responsibility must be reciprocal.

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  • 52. At 8:10pm on 18 Sep 2008, SaintDominick wrote:

    On the issue of deputies, I would like to mention that the USA had a de facto Deputy President in Dick Cheney during the first 5 or 6 years of the Bush Administration.
    There is little doubt that for better or worse, and whatever motives he had in mind, he was the brain behind all of our foreign policy decisions until very recently. Right now he is focusing on real estate in the Persian Gulf...

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  • 53. At 8:11pm on 18 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    We don't have ENOUGH MONEY to fix Social Security
    We don't have ENOUGH MONEY to fix Medicare
    We don't have ENOUGH MONEY to provide health care to ALL Americans
    We don't have ENOUGH MONEY to help out Americans losing their homes
    We don't have ENOUGH MONEY to fully help Katrina victims
    We don't have ENOUGH MONEY to fix our infrastructure
    We don't have ENOUGH MONEY to help ALL our veterans returning from war

    BUT

    We DO HAVE ENOUGH MONEY to bail out Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac
    We DO HAVE ENOUGH MONEY to bail out Bears Stearns
    We DO HAVE ENOUGH MONEY to bail out AIG
    We DO HAVE ENOUGH MONEY to pay for an unnecessary TRILLION DOLLAR war

    When the LITTLE GUY needs help, the GOP scornfully says, "GET ANOTHER JOB!" "That's socialism!"

    But when their BIG GUY CRONIES need a bailout, what do they say?

    SURE, NO PROBLEM. Where's the checkbook?

    -thx to a fellow blogger.

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  • 54. At 8:13pm on 18 Sep 2008, TimothyR444 wrote:

    "It's "the system" itself which debases popular democracy - and even more harmfully, debases international law, the UN Charter, the Geneva Conventions and any attempts by indigenous populations around the world to be free of American aggression and domination, so dear to sober establishment figures like Hagel. "

    Proles:

    Spare me the warmed over faux-Marxist claptrap.

    You obviously know nothing about Hagel. The idea that he is spinning a web of power and manipulation in an attempt to keep evil Americans dominating hapless and innocent victims is a grotesque cartoon.

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  • 55. At 8:31pm on 18 Sep 2008, TimothyR444 wrote:

    "I'm off to the pub now so I imagine by the time I surface this blog may well have expired. You had many positive experiences in Britain. I've always had positive experiences in America. We're even"

    I salute you, Wheelright. You actually take the time speak to me instead of at me.

    This reminds me of the decency, humor and sense of perspective that I came to know and respect in Britain, and which seems in short supply lately.

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  • 56. At 8:42pm on 18 Sep 2008, Long_Odds_Indian wrote:

    Do many Americans really want a Moose for Vice-President? How quaint. I would've thought they'd rather have someone who could get them out of the number of messes they've got themselves into... Enough already! I think we should start looking to China to lead the world...


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  • 57. At 8:50pm on 18 Sep 2008, David Cunard wrote:

    53. goleooo: "We DO HAVE ENOUGH MONEY to bail out Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac" In this case, just as well, since "the LITTLE GUY" would inevitably suffer if 'we' do not; after all, that's who it was set up to help.

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  • 58. At 8:54pm on 18 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    This software analysis of speeches suggests that Obama spins like a top. McCain hardly spins at all.

    Straight talker versus spinner - no contest, really ?

    http://tinyurl.com/4o6cap

    The USA Today article that found that Obama has no claim to be a "uniter" was by its editorial board. Obama write a piece defending himself - but he would do that, wouldn't he? Full of spin, no doubt, he is adept at that.

    McCain didn't need to write a piece, his record speaks for itself in terms of crossing the aisle and opposing his own party on majpr issues.

    Chuck Hagel can hardly be regarded as staunch Repub, any mroe than Joe Lieverman is regarded as staunch Dem. Although Joe says hios party has moved from its centralist position, the tradition of Presidents like Kennedy.

    I would say that Obama represents what are called the nutroots of the Dem party. Until very recently, his views were in lockstep with Daily Kos. Now he is trying to spin away from that - but can he be believed ?

    Palin represents the Limbaugh opposite in many ways, the extreme of the Repubs. . But she is only running for VP.

    McCain is the centrist. That is why he is still in the race - in spite of so many fights with his own party.

    It is still all to play for. But Obama is going to get hit hard this weekend for his connections with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

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  • 59. At 8:57pm on 18 Sep 2008, Millionaireslave wrote:

    The decisions of the next White House administration will have a tremendous impact upon the lives of our children. Would you leave them in the hands of a pitbull, even a lipstick-wearing one?

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  • 60. At 8:58pm on 18 Sep 2008, MagicKirin wrote:

    Justin:

    Did you post a Blog Lieberman questions Obama's experience?

    Since despite what All the Marbles thinks, Lieberman is as or more respected than Hagel

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  • 61. At 9:00pm on 18 Sep 2008, Schwerpunkt wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 62. At 9:08pm on 18 Sep 2008, Span Ows wrote:

    "Did you post a Blog Lieberman questions Obama's experience?"...of course not! This is the daily 'Find some bad news on Palin and post it" Blog. Yesterday we had 600+ comments on the 'Lotta sense' post when all it was was the media saying the media would stop doing what they're doing. Of course because the ehadline had 'doomed' and 'Palin' in the same sentence it's great fodder for the Obama luvvies.

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  • 63. At 9:13pm on 18 Sep 2008, Theowyn wrote:

    "#41. Theowyn, that was actually a joke. But, the point that I was trying to make is that Biden is essentially the "invisible man" as far as the electorate is concerned. And, worse for the Democrats, he is an Easterner."

    I know it was a joke. I was only pointing out how few people Palin has actually governed. And you're right, Biden is invisible. Perhaps the VP debates will change that, but I doubt it.

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  • 64. At 9:14pm on 18 Sep 2008, joe_NH_USA wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 65. At 9:16pm on 18 Sep 2008, Long_Odds_Indian wrote:

    Good, wheelright (#49). We should all go to the pub. Hopefully not the same one... (-:

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  • 66. At 9:18pm on 18 Sep 2008, Xie_Ming wrote:

    "Middle class" in America seems to mean "working with a job and paycheck".

    Does anyone have any evidence that all this campaign talk has any influence on voting? If so, how much?

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  • 67. At 9:20pm on 18 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    An interesting article on the elctoral college figures.

    Looks all to play for.

    http://tinyurl.com/529u4v

    I very much doubt whether Chuck Hagel will figure in most independents' choice. Repubs will mostly ignore what he says. I cannot see why Justin Webb suggests it will. It is far more likely that Joe Lieberman will sway independents, simply because of his greater stature. Notice that Lieberman has been very quiet since the convention.

    Hagel will not be campaigning for Obama in the way that Lieberman will be deployed for McCain.

    And why is Justin Webb back to the same focus on Sarah Palin ? Something visceral - how can such an unusual figure in BBC eyes be in the game at all ? ?

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  • 68. At 9:25pm on 18 Sep 2008, JoshNC wrote:

    I love how the BBC states Sen. Hagel is a "Top Republican" What they leave out is that he isn't running for re-election because he was going to be challeged by the conservative AG in the primary, and it would have been a really tough fight for him, in large part because in recent years he has been more of a Democrat than a Republican.
    He is not well known outside of his state, and not even that well liked in his own state, so this will no effect on the election

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  • 69. At 9:31pm on 18 Sep 2008, pollyvodka wrote:

    Finally, after months of daily reading I've been spurred into posting...

    From my understanding this blog isn't meant to be impartial. It isn't meant to give all sides of the story. It is a blog to start debate about America, generally, but thankfully not exclusively, for people in the UK.

    As someone who is politically interested, but has no vote for me it is the story of the first black American presidential candidate that grabs my attention. Of course it is also the treatment of the second female vice presidential candidate which interests me as well. And months ago it was the equally compelling story of Hillary Clinton's attempt to be the first female presidential candidate.

    In the last few months Justin has been accused as being pro-Clinton, pro-Obama, whereas in fact the only person he has said is likely to be the winner is McCain. I think what he does expertly is putting a cat amongst the pigeons and sitting back and seeing what everyone then comes up with.

    I don't think that the level of abuse that is shown on this blog is necessary - either from the UK to America or from America to the UK - but really, please don't consider the comments of what 30 odd people on a blog as being representative of the views of a nation.

    And finally, isn't it sad that the blogs for "grown ups" are meant to be post moderated - why has this one got to the point where it has to be pre-moderated?

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  • 70. At 9:36pm on 18 Sep 2008, threnodio wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 71. At 9:40pm on 18 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    "One thing Sarah Palin cites as proof of her reform credentials is a pay cut she says she took when she became Mayor of Wasilla in 1996.

    "As mayor I took a voluntary pay cut, which didn't thrill my husband; and then as governor I cut the personal chef position from the budget, and that didn't thrill my hungry kids," Palin said recently, repeating a frequent refrain.

    But did she really get an overall pay cut as mayor? The record suggests a more complex story."

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  • 72. At 9:43pm on 18 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    For those who like NUMBERS

    Sarah Palin, by the Numbers

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/daniel-kurtzman/sarah-palin-by-the-number_b_127355.html



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  • 73. At 9:46pm on 18 Sep 2008, Gary_A_Hill wrote:

    JoshNC (#68), this blog is Justin Webb's opinions, not necessarily the BBCs. In any case, he seems to have removed the characterization "Top Republican."

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  • 74. At 9:52pm on 18 Sep 2008, detroitarsenal wrote:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Midwestern_United_States

    Just incase there anymore Texans who think they live in the MidWest.

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  • 75. At 9:55pm on 18 Sep 2008, Gary_A_Hill wrote:

    Oh, I see that "Top Republican" is a title on another item, not Justin's. In any case, any Senator could be described as a "top Republican" fairly, I think, as there are only a few Senators.

    Whatever Hagel's influence, I'm sure this comment is not something McCain wanted.

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  • 76. At 9:56pm on 18 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #58,

    Poor Johnny,

    The whole point of the editorial is to have a debate. They didn't say Obama has no claim to be a uniter, they said McCain has a longer record of disagreeing with his party. The two are not the same. And which also does not make him a centrist except on amnesty for illegal aliens, something which almost no one here is in favor of unless they need cheap labor at their plant. Another handout to corporate America.

    McCain didn't get the opportunity to write a response because he wasn't being asked to. When they write the next one - 'McCain, too old, f'd and confused to be President' he will get to respond. Or 'Palin, does she have a freaking clue about anything other than grabbing Government handouts' then she may get to respond. Maybe they can do a poll 'What can you see from your house that you know nothing about?'

    Really, being ignorant of US Today and how they write is no way to make your political points.

    Chuck Hagel is a Republican and many of us wish the party would move back to the views of folks like him and Specter. Lieberman is not a Democrat, he is an independent. And likely not for much longer after his recent performances the next Democrat to run against him will win. Like it or not Liebermans opinion on Obama is irrelevant. Just as the other Democratic candidates earlier comments about Obama are (when they said 'I don't think he is ready yet' and now say 'He convinced me.' an age old trick), and Giuliani and Romneys comments about McCain are.

    Freddie Fannie, you are so grasping at straws. Almost as good as the 'Chicago' hacker. The companies made a contribution to Obama, it's public record. Now they get a hand out from George W and his cronies. Oh my god! That makes Obama . . . What? A politician? Nice deduction Sherlocke.

    It is funny watching a lot of folks praying for a scandal about Obama now, feeling it is their only hope.

    But here's the thing John, it would already have come out. This is why we have primaries, so folks get vetted. When you grab someone from the fringe at the last minute they don't. That's a risk, don't know how it will play out now but since Palin is no longer cooperating with her party (a la GW with congress) and subpoenas are involved it is all going to get very nasty. For her.

    Really looking forwards to SNL this week.

    Amused Sam

    P.S. Another poll released, another point Obama pulls ahead

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  • 77. At 10:06pm on 18 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    JohnAAA,
    you and your republican chums, should form a what does mccain call it? a commision?

    yess that it...
    to inquire to BBC about Justin.

    Actually you should start an "Anti-Justin" coalition, that way you can go and demostrate at the front door of BBC headquarters.

    Come on, are you a Palinator or just cheap talk. You got to defend her image with your life. Justin seems to be ruining it for you...

    But actually, the last two topics, don't blame Justin. blame me. I posted the evidence and the links. I have respect for Justin not to allow him to be your target. He is much more qualified than Palin thus does not deserve your voluntary fingerpointing. Becoming a BBC journalists is much more difficult and demanding than becoming a US Vice-president.

    Actually next time you point fingers, think for a second...IF I POINT A FINGER AT SOMEONE, HOW MANY FINGERS AM I POINTING TO MYSELF?

    A clue? (a number from 1 to 5)

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  • 78. At 10:06pm on 18 Sep 2008, WisconsinMike wrote:

    Chuck Hagel should run, not walk, away from the Republican Party. Clearly, he has become a RINO (for those of you who may not be familiar with that acronym, RINO = Republican In Name Only). I agree that Governor Sarah Palin has no foreign policy experience. However, if that disqualifies her from being Vice President, then it also disqualifies Barack Obama from being President. Even "Foot-in-Mouth" Joe Biden has no real foreign policy experience, as his position on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee is strictly based on his Senate seniority, not on any knowledge or expertise in foreign policy matters (he clearly doesn't have any, and even more clearly has a VERY dangerous world view ... eclipsed only by the EVEN MORE dangerous world view of Barack Obama).

    As a general rule, Americans don't want, and don't believe we should have, the "right" to tell other nations who they should elect to be President/Prime Minister/Premier or to similar positions, and we adamantly believe we should be left alone to make our own choices as to who will be our President. If you want the right to vote for the President of the United States, then immigrate legally and become a citizen. Otherwise, please spare us your sanctimonious and patronizing prattle.

    Frankly, based on how well you run your own countries, your being in favor of a candidate for President is a strong reason to vote for the opposition.

    If you had any sense, you would be very scared of an Obama Presidency. I believe that he will bring US troops home from all overseas locations. When that happens, I hope you are prepared to either become Russian satellite states, or spend hugely more amounts on your own defense. You exist as free countries only because there are American patriots who are willing to fight, and if necessary die, to preserve freedom for all.

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  • 79. At 10:13pm on 18 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    Sam

    My impression is that Palin would cooperate with a fair investigation on Troopergate. The present one is being rigged. Like there were subpoenas for all the attendees of a crucial meeting - but French blocked any subpoena to the guy who actually CHAIRED the meeting. And from his oublic statements French is an Obama supporter - and it looks from here that he has the knives out for Palin.

    F Mae and D Mac are far more important. Obama will be seen as their defender - and he worked with ACORN which was in the lead in forcing banks to give sub-prime mortgages. He is up to his neck in the whole mess. McCain was a Senator who tried to promote a Bill to curb the excesses - and a Dem Senate blocked it. Obama had his chance to cross the aisle on this big issue, and like so much else he ducked it.

    You mischaracterise the USA article. They clearly went to a lot of work trying to build an assessment of who had done what. It was by the editorial board. But spin away, that's what your favoured candidate is expert at.

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  • 80. At 10:16pm on 18 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    WisconsinMike

    It is on foreign affairs that I am most troubled by Obama. He has nil experience, and it seems he wants to be far too chummy with the UN and with European nations that are doing damn all to defend themselves. A man for all seasons - faces all ways.

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  • 81. At 10:19pm on 18 Sep 2008, bk9061 wrote:

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/7623256.stm

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  • 82. At 10:21pm on 18 Sep 2008, Right_From_the_Start wrote:

    Oh, please.... Chuck Hagel is only a "republican" when he says stuff like this. He's been a "republican" in name only for years.

    Maybe Justin Webb can tell us precisely what foreign policy Barack Obama has? As Hillary Clinton famously said it was limited to a speech in 2005. But I don't see BBC headlines "Top Democrat Thinks Obama is a Zero in Foreign Policy Experience".

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  • 83. At 10:22pm on 18 Sep 2008, bk9061 wrote:

    "Their research, published in the journal Science, indicates that people who are sensitive to fear or threat are likely to support a right wing agenda.

    Those who perceived less danger in a series of images and sounds were more inclined to support liberal policies.

    The authors believe their findings may help to explain why voters' minds are so hard to change. "



    GOP, politics of fear?

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  • 84. At 10:23pm on 18 Sep 2008, Gary_A_Hill wrote:

    Wisconsin Mike (#78) seems to think he is a spokesman for what "we" Americans want. If he is not interested in what persons from other countries think, why is he reading a BBC website?

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  • 85. At 10:28pm on 18 Sep 2008, Gary_A_Hill wrote:

    Who is the arbiter of who is a "Republican" anyway? It is the party that has moved away from centrist Republicans in the past quarter century, not the other way round. The rabid right wing doesn't consider McCain a real Republican either.

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  • 86. At 10:40pm on 18 Sep 2008, peterm99 wrote:

    re: #76 SamTyler1969

    Regarding Fannie Mae and Freddy Mac, you are mistaken.

    In 2005, McCain proposed legislation to strengthen the oversight standards and processes for these two organizations, predicting that they would collapse unless stricter regulation was implemented. The Senators who received the most "contributions" from these entities (i.e., Dodd and others) fought hard to kill this proposal.

    This was pointed out previously by JohnAAA (several times). In a discussion, it is helpful to actually read the comments that the "other side" makes every now and again, rather than to reflexively attack all the time, as you are wont to do quite frequently.

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  • 87. At 10:41pm on 18 Sep 2008, TimothyR444 wrote:

    "Chuck Hagel is a Republican and many of us wish the party would move back to the views of folks like him and Specter"

    Sam Tyler:

    Hagel and Specter have virtually nothing in common.

    I would like to see Hagel as President. Specter is just a standard left-wing Dem who happens to bear the label "Republican". Hagel is a traditional conservative.

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  • 88. At 10:47pm on 18 Sep 2008, MagicKirin wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 89. At 10:52pm on 18 Sep 2008, apkeeley wrote:

    How is this surprising? Anyone in America who thinks is doubtful of Palin's credentials (or, rather, the lack of credentials).

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  • 90. At 10:53pm on 18 Sep 2008, David Cunard wrote:

    #79 JohnAAA: "ACORN which was in the lead in forcing banks to give sub-prime mortgages." No bank was forced to give sub-prime mortgages. Sheer greed on the part of individual 'mortgage bankers' and their employers was as much a part of the problem as anything else. If you've ever dealt with American banks you would know that the fees they collect, on top of outrageous interest rates for credit cards, contributes to the profit margin. You appear to have a dislike of ACORN because of its mission to assist low and moderate income Americans - and many of those are not Caucasian.

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  • 91. At 11:08pm on 18 Sep 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    Chuck Hagel is right.

    Joe Biden doesn't think Barack Obama is ready either.

    Joe Biden is also correct. Of course, Sarah is running for VP.

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  • 92. At 11:08pm on 18 Sep 2008, WisconsinMike wrote:

    JohnAAA (#80), I agree with you. Obama's foreign policy seems to consist only of "Let's talk." Talking is good, but only if backed by the ability and willingness to use Clausewitz's "other means."

    Gary_A_Hill (#84), No, I don't think I speak for all Americans, as should have been clear from my qualifying phrase "generally speaking" that allows for the fact that some may disagree with me. And I am, in fact, very much interested in what the rest of the world thinks. That does not preclude me from telling some of the posters here that I think they are flat out wrong.

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  • 93. At 11:12pm on 18 Sep 2008, bpopeye51 wrote:

    Chuck Who? Why am I not surprised the BBC takes a comment from Chuck Who and post it as gospel as to what makes America tick. Have any of you ever been to Nebraska or can name the State Capital? Hagel has all but left the Republican party, all but retired, skips his party's convention, and is quoted on the BBC. Now why is that? Why not ask Lieberman, Democratic Senator from Connecticut who spoke at the Republican convention, that he thinks about Obama's qualifications for President of the US? A community organizer from South Chicago? Give me a break. BBC, your colors are showing, again.

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  • 94. At 11:19pm on 18 Sep 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    I bookmarked this from this blog a few days ago... This seems like a good time to post it again.

    Objective measure of candidates experience.

    Sarah Palin gets a 3.00, which is the lowest for VP ever. Joe Biden has one of the highest scores for VP (or even POTUS) at 28.75.

    Barack Obama gets a 5.25, which is the lowest for POTUS ever. Next lowest was GWB in 2000 with 7.5, and I remember GWB talking about his extensive foreign policy experience dealing with Mexico. It's deja vu all over again.

    John McCain comes in at 26.25.

    I would love to see the Biden/McCain ticket.

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  • 95. At 11:30pm on 18 Sep 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    #61, Schwerpunkt :

    Wow. I tried to say that twice today, only to be referred to moderation. I hope the mods aren't on the take, because they sure don't want people to know about slimy Chicago politics. Is it fear of defamation, or fear of the Gotti family?

    People just need to do a little digging on the net, regarding the "hired truck scandal", some of the aldermen, Frank Caruso, Bob Torricelli, etc.

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  • 96. At 11:32pm on 18 Sep 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    #18, DominickVila:

    I agree. McCain knew what he was saying and not saying. Spain's government is not a friend to the US.

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  • 97. At 11:33pm on 18 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #79

    Johnny,

    Not at all. It was a good article, as was Obama's response. He also notes that it is more important to unite the American people than the hacks in DC. This nation is hurting. Even on points, maybe advantage Obama. Either way hardly an overall endorsement of McCain for Prez.

    I merely pointed out that the article does not say what you said it did, and that there was an opposing view that refuted the editorial. USA do this all the time and it is one of the reasons they are a reasonably fair publication, editorially. I am not attacking USA today, I am correcting you.

    As for Fannie / Freddie, it's such a huge scandal that it's been all over CNN and the news networks since tha Fannie bail out on Sunday. Grabbing the headlines. Not. Still, given most stories last 4-5 days at most this one has about 3 hours left to take it's toll. So far it seems to be breaking on the right wing blogs where they usually sound like Hitler in the bunker screaming about the thousand year Reich as the Russians rumble overhead. Oh, and you broke it to about 100 people here.

    LMAO

    As for Troopergate, she was for it before she was against it. It was initiatieed by a bipartisan committee of 8 Repubs and 4 Dems. It was fine until she had a campaign to run, now the McCain guys looked into it and concluded we gotta slow this thing down or we are in for an October Surprise.

    Legally it looks like her allies attempts to stall or stop it have no grounds, so the investigation will go ahead. She can't win on that now, if she is cleared of all wrongdoing she looks like she is anti transparency, an important part of any reform. If she is found to have issues she was condemned by her own party, the one she reformed then said they can't investigate her.

    Which comes to the main issue. McCains judgement. Picking someone with this hanging over them was just plain stupid. Like singing 'bomb bomb bomb, bomb bomb Iran'. Nice old geezer, stick him in the corner of the pub and give him a pint. Or elect him leader of the free world. I think not.

    And meanwhile McCain can't camapign without her at his side because she gets all the coverage. And if they do seperate venues she gets a bigger audience. Plus he's scared of what she might say even with a hand picked audience. When she said 'Let's play stump the candidate' yesterday he looked like he had a trouser accident and quickly jumped in to stop any chance of her taking questions.

    They cover half the ground while Obama gets as much media coverage and Biden gets to ground out votes rallying the unions and getting the 'Get out the vote' machine humming in the battleground states.

    As for Lieberman, he really has no influence with Independents. 'Hi I lost to Bush 8 years ago and I endorse this guy who lost to Bush 8 years ago'. Thanks Joe.

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  • 98. At 11:38pm on 18 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #93

    Popeye,

    As stated previously, Lieberman is an independent not a Democrat. No matter how much you want him to be, he isn't. Spinach ain't what it was.

    Just the facts.

    Sam

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  • 99. At 11:40pm on 18 Sep 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    90, David_Cunard:

    You are right. Fannie and Freddie are a containable problem, as they have an upper limit on the loans they give. It's the west and east coast multi-million dollar houses without adequate means to pay back the loan that are killing the market.

    So far this is a trillion dollar problem for the Fed. Strike that... For the American tax payer's children...

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  • 100. At 11:45pm on 18 Sep 2008, seanspa wrote:

    DC, John is not the only one to see a connection between sub-prime loans and ACORN. This was published back in February. Would you like to explain how the article is inaccurate (I honestly don't know if it is true or not) rather than just use the racist charge again?

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  • 101. At 11:48pm on 18 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #87,

    Timmy,

    They do. We of the GOBBBDMAWGWKMTSPFO endorse them both. And Olympia Snow.

    Candidate Sam

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  • 102. At 11:50pm on 18 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    Real Frigo...
    you really are mad!. Spain an enemy?
    So why don't we make all of Nato an enemy while we are at it?
    I mean it doesn't get any worse?
    all islamic countries dislike us,
    all socialist countries dislike us,
    all communist and dictatorship countries dislike us,
    That's about 75% of the world.
    A european 24% is an acceptable loss, don't you think? That way all we have left is CANADA. o wait they don't like us either. sh1t. Looks to me we are doomed to isolationism and dictature of a different name "democracy". I guess after all democracy and communism are the start and the end of the same circle.

    Brilliant idea real world man! Did you come up with it yourself?
    You really do think America is independent of foreigners don't you?

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  • 103. At 11:57pm on 18 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    "You Know It's A Really Bad Week When Your Running Mate Calls It Her Administration"...See The Video

    For all the fools who think it is McCain who will be president.
    It is no longer the McCain/Palin ticket. it is the Palin/McCain ticket.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2008/09/18/the-palin-mccain-administ_n_127567.html

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  • 104. At 11:59pm on 18 Sep 2008, TimothyR444 wrote:

    I assume you mean Obama in which case the rest of the world which you claim lacks such "inspired" leadership are welcome to him.

    He is a product of the Chicago party machine, by reputation one of the most corrupt and clique driven organizations in American politics. He has produced nothing and lead nothing in his "illustrious" career.

    His political standings tend to be on the left (yes I actually bothered to read his books) yet now suddenly he paints himself as a centrist. Sounds like the usual behavior of a career politician yet again.

    Shwerpunkt:

    I agree fully with you.

    I don't recognize the Obama they are talking about. He is a pop celebrity who represents the far-left of American political life and has no record at all of working with people who disagree with him.

    For some reason, he is worshiped in other parts of the world. This blog treats him like a cult leader. It's very confusing. Do they know - or care - who Obama really is?

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  • 105. At 11:59pm on 18 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    90 David_Cunard

    Please quit implying that I am racist.

    ACORN has been caught up in voter registration fraud in many states, and it is very closely connected to the Fannie Mae collapse. It specialised in getting mortgages that should never have been granted.

    Try this forensic trail, for example, headed "The best Congress Fannie Mae could buy :

    http://tinyurl.com/6mdzh5

    Here is some more on voter fraud :

    http://tinyurl.com/4tel3a

    or this :

    http://www.stoptheaclu.com/archives/2008/09/15/more-acorn-vote-fraud-attempts/

    or this on why the Dems are screaming about requirements for proper identification of voters at the polling station :

    http://tinyurl.com/4mevaw

    Here is some stuff in Obama still closely linked with ACORN - and some very funny payments his campaign made to them :

    http://tinyurl.com/4odscx

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  • 106. At 11:59pm on 18 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    "Max Bergmann, 09.18.2008
    This gaffe would seem to have very significant implications. Not knowing who the leader of Spain was or thinking Spain was in Latin America would not really be shocking coming from his running mate, but McCain has run on his foreign policy expertise."

    McCain knows it ALL!
    except that Spain is in Europe!

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  • 107. At 00:01am on 19 Sep 2008, realgonecat wrote:

    Hagel's questioning of Palin's experience is NOT important. His questioning of Bush's war has not been important. Good for him that he does, but he broke Reagans 11th Commandment---thou shalt not speak ill of another Republican, long ago, and his opinion may carry weight with disenchanted Libertarian leaning GOP folks, but he has no cred left as a GOP stalwart, any more than Leiberman has as a democrat, and all the Libertarians are voting for Barr anyway.

    Not saying no voters will be swayed, but if it's more than 100,000 you got yourself a scoop, and most of those will have their votes split up in diehard red states, like Nebraska, South Dakota, Wyoming, etc., and have ZERO impact on the electoral college tally.

    There has been big talk about winning the support of the political center and that also is malarkey. The dems will win if they have a turnout like they had in the Wyoming primary, where turnout nearly doubled the 2004 total. All that is needed is that a larger than average number of registered dems vote nationwide, and the Republicans MUST lose, simple math. No savior centrists need be schmoozed in any fashion. They can go fly a kite.

    RGC

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  • 108. At 00:03am on 19 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    what a shame. how many fools in this country, who keep giving mccain chance after chance after chance to get it right.

    if it was Obama who made one such mistake his head would have been giyotined several times by the republicans and the media.

    pathetic and shameful.
    For ages Americans before this baby boomer foolish generation have given their lives to make this country better, only for this country to be destroyed by the ignorance of their descendants.

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  • 109. At 00:04am on 19 Sep 2008, Tipoconsuerte wrote:

    Senator Hagel's should be commended for his comment. Only a true leader and patriot has the ability to put aside partisanship and state the obvious. The independently minded want qualified, competent and knowledgeable leadership to steer the country through clear paths. Partisanship only serves to obfuscate reality.

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  • 110. At 00:04am on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #100

    So Sean,

    Obama knew some people at ACORN (don;t know if he did) who camapigned to end discrimination which banks say resulted in them being 'forced' to offer liar loans which were packaged in derivatives that no one could value and were sold around the world that resulted in devaluation of the banks who bought thems balance sheets which led them to be unable to borrow cash to keep their businesses running and resulted in a global credit crunch that led to the collapse of majotr financial institutions that George Bush et al had to bail some out at the taxpayers while others were allowed to fail and be purchased by foreigners despite the moral hazard and this in turn led the Federal government to socialize insurance?

    Man, that's some evil genius! No wonder the press are making such a field day of it! And it must be true because the NY Post wrote about some of it. A Murdoch owned tabloid?

    This is too funny.

    Amused Sam

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  • 111. At 00:09am on 19 Sep 2008, ScurvyChipmunk wrote:

    Sir, I have to say (regrettably) that your assessment of the potential effects of Hagel's comments severely underestimates the ignorance of American voters. I would imagine that outside Nebraska fewer than one in twenty Americans has any idea who Chuck Hagel is, and independent voters are no better informed than the rest of us, possibly less so, which would explain why they see-saw between parties with starkly different ideologies.

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  • 112. At 00:11am on 19 Sep 2008, aquarizonagal wrote:

    To#69Pollyvodka

    I am so happy that you chose to post!

    Your words were so good. Please keep posting! I will say that I stopped reading after I read yours. There are some here who have a lot to share and others whose minds only hear their own thoughts and words. They keep repeating the same thing over and over. It is good to read new thoughts.

    Thank You

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  • 113. At 00:14am on 19 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    must watch
    http://www.thedailyshow.com/full-episodes/index.jhtml?episodeId=185171

    McCain for drilling,
    Democrats pass the bill for driling
    Republicans against the bill on drilling

    well...doesn't that mean they are against McCain?
    Or is McCain is more of a liar he already is?

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  • 114. At 00:16am on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    Sam

    Of course Fannie Mae has been all over the headlines.

    What is only starting to percolate through is Obama and the Dems generally preventing tighter regulation of Fannie Mae.

    And the wretched sub-prime mess has had very damaging effects over here as well. A fine mortgage provider and small-consumer bank, the Halifax, has just been forced under, as part of the HBOS group - so the historic Bank of Scotland goes under too. This will affect many thousands of their workers. I was in a branch of the Halifax today, the staff are worried sick. I have dealt with the Halifax for decades, they granted my first mortgage and I have used them many times since. They are a straight and efficient organisation with a fine history - all now undermined by the sub-prime mess and slice-and-dice games in Wall Street infecting the global financial system.

    The Halifax and Bank of Scotland (who have always had the right to print their own banknotes) are merely part of the backwash flowing from the absurd sub-prime mess that was caused by Dem notions that people were somehow "entitled" to mortgages regardless of their ability to sustain their repayments. When McCain and others tried to tighten up the regulation - referring specifically to injudicious lending by Fannie Mae - the Dems blocked it. That is a matter of record.

    And that is what will be made increasingly clear in coming days.

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  • 115. At 00:22am on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    "Obama disguising ties to radical leftist group " :

    http://tinyurl.com/4odscx

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  • 116. At 00:54am on 19 Sep 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    #102, goleooo:

    "Not a friend" means enemy to you? Glad to see you using your classical education.

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  • 117. At 00:58am on 19 Sep 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    This is not an American politician, but this is why I do not believe politicians should be allowed to be involved in government.

    Environmental Politics...

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  • 118. At 01:25am on 19 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 119. At 01:26am on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #114

    Yawn boring. Saying the same thing over and over doesn't make it a scandal, less so one for the presidential election.

    Too dull to respond with more.

    Sleepy Szzzzzzzzzzzzzz

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  • 120. At 01:30am on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #114

    That is the biggest whinyest post I have read on this blog.

    So the Halifax bought assets they couldn't value and are exposed by the volume of them? Fools.

    Poor governance, poor decision making. Let them fail. Someone will buy what is left, for what it is worth. The only place any blame can be laid is on the macroeconmic policy in the US that started the recession. Even so these guys took the profits for years, now they lose. Tough. Anything else is socialism.

    They took the gains, take the losses. That's capitalism.

    Business Sam

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  • 121. At 01:35am on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 122. At 01:52am on 19 Sep 2008, seanspa wrote:

    I'm sorry to see HBOS go. I worked for a company taken over by them a few years back and met some of the senior management at the time. They appeared decent people. The then chief exec James Crosby had the biggest head (literally) of anyone I've ever seen. Mind you, the staff in the local branch were miserable sods.

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  • 123. At 01:52am on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    We of the GOBBBDMAWGWKMTSPFO have noticed that this blog has been very boring today. Long posts saying the same thing.

    We have also been asked to clarify our position on social issues. While we have yet to put these in a policy document we can provide some feedback to the voting public to make it clear where we stand on the important issues.

    - We like bluegrass
    - We don't like Country and Western
    - Except Texas Country
    - We like Ali Velshi
    - We don't like Jack Cafferty
    - We like Librarians
    - We don't like people trying to look like sexy librarians
    - We like Cops, Nurses and waiters
    - We like full size pickups
    - We love guns, especially shotguns
    - We don't like proctologists
    - Or anyone else with 'the glove'
    - We like Justin Webb and Matt Frei
    - We like all BBC series with main characters called 'Tyler'
    - We like the SEC
    - We don't like Nancy Pelosi
    - We like economists
    - We don't like people who nothing about economics but think they do
    - We don't like Howard Stern, although we do like the fact he's made a 20 year career from saying f' on the radio
    - We like Kylie
    - We don't like Carly, but we do respect her
    - We like puppies
    - We don't like old people. especially the ones who smell of pee
    - We like Jeremy Clarkson
    - We love Richard Hammond and James May
    - We don't like Larry King
    - We don't like Greta Van Sustren, but we do like her husband
    - We don't like telemarketers
    - We like Car Talk
    - We don't like Le Show, but we do like Spinal tap (sorry Harry)
    - We don't like any movies with Meg Ryan in them
    - We don't like the new Star Wars movies, we do like the old ones
    - We don't like the old Battlestar Galactica, but we do like the new one
    - We love Clint Eastwood
    - We don't hate anyone, even the IRS

    Pax vobsicum

    Sam

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  • 124. At 01:53am on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #123

    Bet they moderate that

    Trying Sam!

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  • 125. At 01:53am on 19 Sep 2008, turningblueandgrey wrote:

    Somehow I think that low income 1st time buyers and ACORN etc. do not bear the brunt of blame for the current banking meltdown.

    I know that as a beleaguered lower-middle class breadwinner and taxpayer who makes every mortgage payment, I (and my kids) will probably bear the brunt of the cost for all this.

    When I was house-hunting as the market transformed from languid to red-hot almost 5 years ago, and lost at least 10% of my buying power by hesitating, thinking a bizarre bubble would burst any month, two things bothered me:

    1) Most lenders resisted my demand for a fixed rate loan. All kinds of adjustable rate or 'stated income' loans were practically shoved down my throat instead. Finally I found what I wanted - but I see why many people wound up saddled with an ARM if they did not know enough to persist.

    A trend that predated the hot market, of packaging and selling mortgages rather than holding them at the lender (which many old-fashioned credit unions still do) always bothered me too.

    2) On a number of business trips 2003 - 2005 I overheard fellow passengers: "I have 5 properties in SoCal"; "I have 8 houses in Las Vegas and 2 in Phoenix"; "I have 3 houses in Albuquerque - it's the next Las Vegas", etc.

    While there is great precedent for land-ownership being central to the American dream, well practiced and articulated by John Adams, this latest housing 'boom' included a rapacious and unfettered type of speculation that would not have sat well with any founding father and which proved damaging and usurious to the rest of us in the long run. The number of empty houses in Nevada speaks to the number of absentee speculators as opposed to 'real' homeowners.

    Are these guys all gritting their teeth to make all of their payments? I bet they are glad for all the Capital Gains cuts they enjoyed under Bush Republicans while they were 'flipping' houses on the way up. Now the damage that these speculators and aggresive bankers have done threatens to go further and 'break the buck' e.g. make it so that folks who tried to conservatively invest in money market funds will not get a dollar back for each dollar they've saved and put in.


    I don't care where Obama went to school. He is visibly smart and he is attuned to the growing pressure on the American middle class. Republicans have moved so far away from the values I was raised under by Ike-admiring children of the great Depression, that now Obama Democrats are much, much closer.

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  • 126. At 01:54am on 19 Sep 2008, SaintDominick wrote:

    I wish we had a Ross Perot or Michael Bloomberg running as Independents, I would have changed allegiance by now. The only thing that is worse than Obama's solutions to our economic crisis, which seems to be limited to saying that McCain doesn't get it, is McCain's solution to solve our economic crises by firing the chairman of the SEC. These guys are pathetic!
    Hopefully the White House, Congressional leaders, Fed, and the SEC chairman will come up with a solution that will put an end to the piecemeal collapse of our banking and financial crises in the meeting they are having at this time. I hope Pelosi, Reid, Bernanke, Paulsson and the rest of our leaders - both Dems and Reps - have the courage to seek a solution that benefits the American people without getting immersed in partisan politics and finger pointing.
    I suspect that initially the solution will appear as a huge burden to the taxpayers - as it is likely to exceed a trillion dollars - but as soon as all the failed corporations reorganize and start divesting their profitable assets, the government should be able to recover most of the money it will invest. Most importantly, they must restore consumer confidence before we reach the point of no return.
    As for our presidential candidates, I think they deserve an F.

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  • 127. At 02:00am on 19 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    110, Sam.

    During the McCarthy period I knew communists. Before the Iranian revolution I knew the revolutionaries. Some of these associations were social. Yet I am neither a communist nor a revolutionary.

    I guess that means I could never be president.

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  • 128. At 02:01am on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #123

    - We love Tina fey

    Sam

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  • 129. At 02:11am on 19 Sep 2008, john-In-Dublin wrote:

    At 4 Wheelwright made the dreadful threat that a McCain victory might be "met by a resigned sigh and a shake of the head." from the rest of the world.

    What kind of insane terrorist mastermind could threaten such a thing?!

    This [ref 22] set poor old TimothyR444 on yet another of his anti-anti-American rants, eg "You must realize that these threats and accusations have been going on for several years now, and that we have become accustomed to the ugliness of anti-Americanism and the demands of other nations to vote according to what you want."

    Threats!

    Tim, flower, you're getting like some elderly prude who sees sex everywhere. It just looks silly.

    He adds "The effect of all those instults is weating thinn."

    Well - who can argue with that....

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  • 130. At 02:12am on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    sam

    I have not seen any suggestion that Halifax/bank of Scotland was heavily involved in taking on rubbish US sub-prime mortgages.


    It has been hit by the virtual freezing of ALL normal credit markets caused by the sub-prime mess.

    So your argument falls flat on its face.

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  • 131. At 02:15am on 19 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    93. Popeye.

    The difference between Chuck Hagel and Joe Lieberman is that Hagel has a good reputation and Lieberman does not.

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  • 132. At 02:17am on 19 Sep 2008, john-In-Dublin wrote:

    31 - duhbuh wrote: essentially a long rant, Reps [except Hagel] good, Dems bad, the Beeb sucks, yada yada

    Presumably duhbuh is short for duh-buh-yuh. Except I don't think he's learned to write yet.

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  • 133. At 02:17am on 19 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    128, Sam.

    Now if Tina Fey were the vice presidential candidate I wouldn't have so many objections. Tina Fey is intelligent.

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  • 134. At 02:18am on 19 Sep 2008, seanspa wrote:

    Sam, you have to include the line "We're the Sweeny and we haven't had our breakfast" somehow.

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  • 135. At 02:19am on 19 Sep 2008, turningblueandgrey wrote:

    # 121 once more with the -isms, the recipe for name-calling seems to be 3 cups socialism to 1 cup marxism with a dash of Castro when talking about Obama, and a pound of fascism if speaking about the middle east...

    The only -ism that Americans have fought and bled to save ourselves and others from is totalitarianism, and it was not terribly different under whether Hitler or Stalin, Mussolini or Tojo, or even Barbary tyrants.

    I've met folks from scandinavia who can intelligently discuss the pros and cons of their 'socialist' care and education support vs. high taxes, trading family security for discretionary income. They are not emigrating in droves, and neither will we recreate that culture here.

    Call them whatever -ism you want, several basic safety nets were set up in America after the last economic meltdown of this magnitude, programs which Eisenhower respected but which George W. Bush targeted to pull out from under the lower 95% to 99% of us...

    Homeland security has become a pretext to move us closer by small steps to the really dangerous -ism, the one that has cost us so dearly before, totalitarianism.

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  • 136. At 02:20am on 19 Sep 2008, debbie_elle wrote:

    I am pleased that a prominent Republican politician is questioning the choice of Palin as a VP running mate to McCain. We all have the right to question her credentials for the job and not be accused of being sexist, elitist or any other "ist". As probably many other women, I was looking forward to seeing a female VP candidate. However I am left disappointed by her public speeches and interviews so far. Her interview with Gibson on ABC particularly did not impress me. Her answers were forced, scripted........ simply "lacking". It is the position on policies that voters are interested in, not the personality.

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  • 137. At 02:22am on 19 Sep 2008, BarryHaley wrote:

    My family has two sides. My mother's side is Unionist Democrat, as hard as nails. My father's family lived six blocks from the Romney estate in Michigan and were Republican since Christ left Chicago. Talk about a dichotomy. They always though, found common ground, especial on foreign policy. There are politicians and Veterans on both sides of my personal fence, so when a Senator like Hagal breaks ranks and questions Palin's credentials on foreign policy, yes, it gets noticed. If McCain wins, and something dire happens, I pray to God she is more a Truman than an Andrew Johnson.

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  • 138. At 02:24am on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #127

    Marby,

    by the same logic, yes. And if you are appointed to a board with someone you have to do background checks on all of them because you share all their beliefs. The lord knows what values I have on that basis. Even those they held before you were born but have since changed.

    It's silly isn't it

    Sam

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  • 139. At 02:25am on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #121

    I have a picture of a teddy bear!

    Dotty Sam

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  • 140. At 02:33am on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #69

    Amen to that

    #109

    and that

    #112

    and that

    #121
    ??????

    #125

    Amen to that

    #126

    And totally that

    Pax

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  • 141. At 02:36am on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #133

    Amen to that

    #134

    'Watch out Sean, he's got a shooter'

    #135

    Amen to that

    #136

    And That

    #137 and that

    Quality of posts tonight is really up!

    Happy Sam

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  • 142. At 02:36am on 19 Sep 2008, aquarizonagal wrote:

    I think what should be more disturbing is McCain's latest gaffe regarding Spain. I am not sure if that poor old man even knows what planet he is currently occupying.

    How many planets do we have now? Ten? Nine? Eight?

    Or maybe an easier one to ask McCain:
    How many continents do we have? or even easier how many fingers are on your hand.

    SO SAD!

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  • 143. At 02:37am on 19 Sep 2008, David Cunard wrote:

    #99. RealFrigid: "You are right. Fannie and Freddie are a containable problem, as they have an upper limit on the loans they give." You could have knocked me over with a feather!! I can't see that either FM has to shoulder the blame - and certainly not ACORN. There certainly was egregious 'red-lining' for mortgages and insurance which continued into the 1990s. I know from personal experience, having once purchased a house in the historic West Adams are of Los Angeles - no regular mortgage provider would look at it simply because of the area it was in, mostly inhabited by African-Americans and Hispanics and was considered to be "South Central Los Angeles". Now the same area is gentrified and the property is worth more than the house I live in out in the suburbs!

    There has always been an element of fraud in the mortgage industry; I have a friend who, being a veteran, purchased his house through the provisions of the GI Bill. His income at the time was not quite sufficient although he had a partner who would be co-paying the mortgage - in other words, the two could afford it. To get around this problem, under the question of Racial Origin (this was around 1972) the agent inserted the word "Black" which, needless to say, was untrue. The application sailed through without a hitch. The company? Countrywide Funding.

    #105. JohnAAA: "Please quit implying that I am racist." I didn't imply anything of the sort - you are far too sensitive. What I did write was that ACORN represented the interested of low and moderate income families, "many of those are not Caucasian." That includes the entire ethnic spectrum, not simply African-Americans as you seem to suggest.

    I would imagine that you never have applied for a mortgage or "First Trust Deed" in the United States. It is the original *lender* who makes the checks for financial suitability, not FM1 or FM2. Bank loan officers and mortgage brokers get paid a commission to place a mortgage, an incentive in itself for "creative financing". The lender then sells these relatively small mortgages to the eventual underwriter. The fault is entirely that of the banks concerned - having sold a loan to FM they are then home and dry and have no direct responsibility, save for servicing the loan and collecting the monthly payment. ACORN could not force any bank, let alone FM, to grant a mortgage; there is always some financial incentive for the individual loan officer to do so. As is often the case, it comes down to greed, both personal and corporate.

    Your links are primarily to other blogs which simply trot out the same accusations you make - and anything said by Phyllis Schlafly is automatically suspect given her vile opinions in the past. You have previously referred us WorldNetDaily, an organisation which would find fault with Christ for his "leftist" leanings. I do not see that the issue of voter fraud - which may or may not be as widespread as you intimate - is germane to the discussion about mortgages. It serves only to muddy the waters and to cast aspersions on an otherwise generous undertaking. Since you live, with your big screen and the luxuries of retirement, within close proximity to the Thames, I very much doubt if you have been refused a mortgage or a credit card in recent years. ACORN attempts to level the playing field for those less fortunate than yourself. You should spend a holiday living in somewhere like Carson or Compton, California or Trinidad, DC, in order to see how the other half lives. Possibly you might alter your opinion of ACORN, but probably not.

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  • 144. At 02:40am on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #123

    We of the GOkeBBBDMAWGWKMTSPFO have been petitioned and should clarify our position:

    - We like actors who say 'We're the Sweeney, son. And we havn't had any dinner' and 'Lewis'
    - We do not like Nazis. At all. Not one bit
    - We like people who say 'Power to the people!'

    Citizen Sam

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  • 145. At 02:41am on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #142

    Eight? I heard Pluto is a dog now.

    Astronomical Sam

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  • 146. At 02:43am on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    Obama's gmail has now been hacked as well : [Unsuitable/Broken URL removed by Moderator]

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  • 147. At 02:46am on 19 Sep 2008, MagicKirin wrote:

    ref #131

    Wrong Joe Lieberman is a great American and not the Senator from CT who took a sweetheart loan from Countrywide

    He also stands up to the hate mongers of Move on org and the Daily Kos. As well as the financial speculator and tax cheat George Soros.

    And the fact you don't like him proves that he is a great man

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  • 148. At 02:53am on 19 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    138, Sam.

    It is because I knew the communists and the revolutionaries that I understood them in a way that casual readers (and victims of propaganda) cannot.

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  • 149. At 02:55am on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #130

    Johnny,

    Totally, utterly wrong. Halifax went down for two reasons:

    1) the fear of enormous losses on the derivative mortage based assets that they own (and they have quite a few)

    2) short selling based on that fear

    If what you say was true, every bank would now be gone. But they are not. Most are suffering, but the smarter ones will survive.

    If you don't understand how the selling on of those assets works go do some research before you post. This is my bag, baby. Bring it on if you want to argue this one. I can go all night.

    Bottom line

    Recession trigger caused by massive US deficits run up by the party you admire. Depreciation of dollar assets due to weak economy. Enormous strain on companies with those assets. Write offs, banks lower risk tolerance and lend each other less, putting strain on the weakest.

    Then the Halifax. Poor governance, poor risk management, poor decisions, lack of confidence, market moves, out of business. That is capitalism. The business goes under, it has to be allowed to fail. Those 'miserable sods' (as someone said) are out of work. Tough. Their fault for choosing to work there. They can pull themselves up by their bootstraps.

    That's Republicanism at work. If you don't like it, you should reconsider your candidate.

    Can't have it both ways. No matter how hard you try.

    Me, I think it sucks for everyone and it will be a hard slog to put it right.

    Economist Sam

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  • 150. At 03:01am on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    Bill Clinton praises John McCain as a great man, says Palin is an instinctively effective candidate, thinks Hillary has the best handle on the financial mess, In passing he says he expects Obama to win.

    Hardly a ringing endorsment for The One ??

    http://tinyurl.com/4qs63e

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  • 151. At 03:08am on 19 Sep 2008, AndreainNY wrote:

    JohnAAA,

    As an American citizen, I am not that concerned about Obama's shady history with Ayers and his education boondoggle--that is, I find it morally repugnant but not a great risk.

    Let to his own devices, he has moved in some pretty questionable circles. I think this has come to an end. His past has been airbrushed. One by one his "associations" have been uncovered and dissolved. Even his wife no longer appears with him.

    I don't believe that his handlers will allow him to make these same mistakes again. And his supporters appear quite happy to ignore this part of his past.

    So, let's hope it's all behind us.

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  • 152. At 03:11am on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #148

    And I always forget to thank you for your service.

    Thank you.

    Grateful Sam

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  • 153. At 03:12am on 19 Sep 2008, AndreainNY wrote:

    Justin,

    This really isn't as important as you might think. It will get more traction on the net than it will among independents.

    I'm not so sure independent are affected by these kinds of partisan things -- to their credit.

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  • 154. At 03:12am on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #150

    Boring

    But since you agree with him you will also agree when he said Obama Biden are the right ticket for our future?

    zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

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  • 155. At 03:14am on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    I rather doubt if the US authorities have access to enough dollars to keep the system afloat. Puts me in mind of Galbraith's book on the Great Crash.

    But it was probably all Maggie Thatcher's fault for deregulating the city of London in the eighties, Big Bang.

    Yesm Bush was profligate. Obama would be too. McCain would not be, relatively..

    Another reason for McCain.

    And Obama looks in hock to Walll Street anyway, lots of money for him from there.

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  • 156. At 03:27am on 19 Sep 2008, David Cunard wrote:

    #99. RealFrigid - Regarding multi-million dollar homes, you might care to read this from the Wall Street Journal. How are the mighty fallen!

    #150. JohnAAA: "In passing (Clinton) says he expects Obama to win." Saying four times that he will win doesn't look to me as if President Clinton said it "in passing".

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  • 157. At 03:28am on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    Sam

    You are pretty boring too

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  • 158. At 03:32am on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    test

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  • 159. At 03:34am on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #155

    Yawn, no boring. Dull. Wrong.

    It's due to back macroeconomic policy. Big bang worked, it was great for London and for the global financial markets.
    Policy Sam

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  • 160. At 03:34am on 19 Sep 2008, jasongarcia wrote:

    Hagel is a bitter...non player.

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  • 161. At 03:35am on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    No, I'm fun. It's a widely acknowledged position.

    Amused Sam

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  • 162. At 03:40am on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #155

    BTW, McCain is worse than Bush. he wants to extend the tax cuts that are supposed to expire. Keep the deficit growing. Cut spending by maybe 1% for earmarks, if Sarah let him.

    Obama would not. Would cost me a ton of money each year, but worth it to get the economy back on track.

    Sleep well,

    Sam



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  • 163. At 03:42am on 19 Sep 2008, AndreainNY wrote:

    156. David_Cunard:

    Bill Clinton may believe Obama will win, but is only offering a lukewarm endorsement.

    I would guess Hillary still doesn't believe Obama can win. I bet no one is more surprised than she that he has managed to get this far. Documents from her campaign showed it believed he was dead in the water after Reverend Wright.

    Yes, yes, I know she's campaigning for him. She has to. She's a pro.

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  • 164. At 03:53am on 19 Sep 2008, LadyBobbieBea wrote:

    As I was watching the news last night as Obama give an answer about how he weighs out issues, sometimes obsessing a bit too much, yet still quite capable of making a decision, I thought of the Myers Briggs Personality Assessment. I know some don't give credence to such testing; however, it was (and still may be) common practice in corporate America, partiularly in team environments.

    I found the testing paticularly helpful in understanding leadership styles. As an ISTJ, I thought I sensed something familiar in his answer.

    Has anyone heard or seen anything about any of the candidates having taken such testing and the results? Something tells me it was mentioned in Obama's second book, but I borrowed it from the library and no longer have it.

    That would really mean something to me if they all took the test. I would actually understand the comparisons.

    b

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  • 165. At 04:03am on 19 Sep 2008, aquarizonagal wrote:

    To Samtyler1969

    I just finished reading all the posts here and you have made my day! Your responses to some of the more prolific posters was outstanding! You obviously have both knowledge and a sense of humor.

    Sorry, but I think that Pluto should still be counted as a planet. I was very sorry to hear about that particular bit of 'down-sizing.'

    You ARE fun! Keep it up!

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  • 166. At 04:11am on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    Sam said that Obama had some 200 electoral college votes locked away already compared to 100 and sme for McCain.

    I thought at the time those figures looked spurious, any gap was nothing like that wide.

    Looking at RCP's tally of poll averages state-by-state, Obama has 130 seats from states where the polling shows a lead of more than 10%, McCain has 114. No such large gap as Sam asserted there.

    If you add in the states that RCP labels as "leaning" to one side - as distinct from "toss-ups", Obama gets nother 45 giving a total of 175. McCain gets another 56, giving a total of 170.

    On that basis Sam was plumb wrong in asserting a 2 to 1 advantage for Obama.

    Don't economists do math any more ?

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  • 167. At 04:18am on 19 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    125, Bluejay.

    When we think of forclosures we picture poor people standing out in the snow. In fact, for many it was an financial decision, not necessarily based on need.

    When house values started to drop, and the mortgage exceeded market value, many cut their losses and defaulted. There is a house a couple of blocks away from me in forclosure. The defaulting neighbor owes almost $800,000. This is not a poor guy. He merely decided it was not a sound investment, and he could put his money to better use elsewhere.

    If anyone thinks that banks like to forclose, think again. The last thing they want is a bunch of houses on their hands. They are not realtors. (This is not by way of saying they are great guys.)

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  • 168. At 04:24am on 19 Sep 2008, TimothyR444 wrote:

    John-in-Dublin:

    "Tim, flower, you're getting like some elderly prude who sees sex everywhere. It just looks silly. "

    Considering the quality of your posts, you are hardly in a position to be making a comment about anything I posted. There's no a single word worh reading.

    This is a forum about politics. Perhaps you are not aware of that? So save your matronly scolding and whining.

    Surely you have something better to do with your life than cluck and fuss at Americans?

    Perhaps not....

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  • 169. At 04:25am on 19 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    126, Dominick.

    You don't have to sell me on Ross Perot. I voted for him twice. Unfortunately when you have a candidate from outside the establishment, both sides jump on him.

    Bloomberg is a good mayor. Not as good as Giuliani, but almost. If Giuliani had run as an independent, and not had to say all those dumb Republican things he did not believe in, he would have been a good choice. I think he dropped out of the race because he couldn't stand the part he was playing.

    He and Bloomberg are not Republicans in the strict sense. In fact, it is hard to tell which side they are on, an advantage in my opinion. I would call them independents by nature.

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  • 170. At 04:31am on 19 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    130, Johnny.

    I am not familiar with the particular bank you are talking about. I do know, however, British banks were handing out mortages like party favors, so don't get rightious we me.

    The fact is that when a bank fails in Britianland it shocks the country and makes ripples that affect other nations. When American banks fail it is felt around the world. Our fault, if you want to call it that, is in size.

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  • 171. At 04:31am on 19 Sep 2008, David Cunard wrote:

    #163.AndreainNY: "Bill Clinton may believe Obama will win, but is only offering a lukewarm endorsement." I don't think it would be expected that he would give gushing praise to someone that, on behalf of his wife, he had opposed. The public would see through that in a New York minute. A controlled endorsement and continued (public) confidence in Obama's victory works far better.

    Some time ago I predicted that without Mrs Clinton, Mr Obama could not win - but like so many others, I hadn't considered such an audacious choice by Mr McCain in Mrs Palin. There will be many who vote for the Republican ticket because of her - and just as many who will vote Democratic for the same reason. Understandably, the Clinton family is playing it very close and, as you say, Hillary is a pro. She'll fight on and whether the Democrats win or lose, she'll still have her Senate seat. In a way, she has the best of both worlds for the present.

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  • 172. At 04:34am on 19 Sep 2008, BienvenueEnLouisiana wrote:

    I'm not surprised that Senator Chuck Hagel questioned Palin's experience. Remember, he is one of the few Republicans in office that does not support the war or support their party's choice for the presidency. He has repeatedly worked and campaigned with Obama. Senator Hagel is no more than the Republican's version of Senator Lieberman, only Senator Hagel hasn't been tossed out of his party yet. It's sad that he feels he must oppose his party's agenda to stay in office in Nebraska. We might just as well have listened to an Obama aid because he practically is one.

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  • 173. At 04:39am on 19 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    147, Magic.

    "And the fact that you don't like him proves that he (Lieberman) is a great man."

    Fascinating statement. You seem to be saying that you don't have a mind of your own and are in favor of everything that I am not.

    Now I know how to brainwash you.

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  • 174. At 04:40am on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    Obama and the sub-prime (ie junk) mortgage game :

    http://tinyurl.com/3qhksj

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  • 175. At 04:42am on 19 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    150. Johnny.

    Given what I think of Bill Clinton (a corrupt influence peddler) I would take an insult from him as a compliment, and vice versa.

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  • 176. At 04:46am on 19 Sep 2008, BienvenueEnLouisiana wrote:

    For those who do not believe that Senator Hagel does not support Senator Obama openly as I've said, Google his name and see what pops up automaticly; better yet, go to his congressional website and see how often he has worked with Obama. He even went with Obama to Iraq. The (R) next to his name is ment only for the headlines, so they can read: Prominent Republican criticizes.......

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  • 177. At 04:54am on 19 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    166, Johnny.

    Do you have any outside interests, I mean in addition to Obama and Palin? Do you ever have fun? Have you ever told a joke?

    I see the pedantry and obsessiveness, but there must be another side to you. At least I hope there is....

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  • 178. At 05:16am on 19 Sep 2008, BienvenueEnLouisiana wrote:

    As for Palin not having enough experience, does Obama really want to have that debate?

    Palin held two executive positions before being chosen as McCain's VP. She was mayor of an Anchorage suburb- admittedly a small one. She was also the Gov. of Alaska.
    Capital: Juneau
    Largest city: Anchorage
    Area Ranked: 1st in the U.S.
    - Total 656,424 sq mi
    (1,717,854 km²)
    - Width 808 miles
    (1,300 km)
    - Length 1,479 miles
    (2,380 km)
    Population Ranked: 47th in the U.S.
    - Total 683,478
    (2007 est.)
    Density Ranked: 50th in the U.S.
    - Total 1.2/sq mi
    (0.46/km²)
    Median income Ranked: 6th in the U.S.
    - US$54,627

    I wouldn't be trust worthy if I didn't include the relatively low pop. and density.

    Also, the following should be taken into account on when discussing what experience Americans look for in a President:
    Generals who became President
    -12
    Governors who became President
    -16
    Vice Presidents who became President
    -14
    Representatives who became President
    -1
    Senators who became President
    -2

    The fact is that Americans value the executive experience that Palin has more than Obama's few years in the Senate.

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  • 179. At 05:22am on 19 Sep 2008, David Cunard wrote:

    #168 TimothyR444: "This is a forum about politics." Not so - it's about all facets of America and, at the moment, particularly the upcoming election. You seem concerned that John-in-Dublin called you 'flower' - it's better than being called 'petal' which Lily Savage might have said. Actually, John-in-Dublin's posts are quite rare, on this thread, he scores two while you score eleven. Hard to say that he "clucks and fusses about Americans" let alone make adverse comment on the quality of his posts. For someone who is "fed up with the endless circus" you sure do have a lot to say!

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  • 180. At 05:27am on 19 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    155, Johnny.

    Just from AIG alone the government stands to make a bundle. Banks are slathering to get their hands on some of the assets.

    AIG has many units in its empire, some extremely profitable. As I understand it, they could not take from Peter to pay Paul. I bought AIG yesterday at a knockdown price and expect to make money on it.

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  • 181. At 05:49am on 19 Sep 2008, paul939 wrote:

    180. Johnyy.

    AS far as I know, here in India, the AIG affiliates are still operational, and though their stocks have dipped somewhat, they have not depreciated as much as I expected them too. AIG might just pull through, but i wouldn't buy their stock now, after this entire fiasco.

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  • 182. At 05:58am on 19 Sep 2008, gunsandreligion wrote:

    Just tuning back in and found out about the
    feds' plan to rescue failing banks by forming
    a RTC for the new milenium. I'm jealous!

    All I can say is Rescue ME!

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  • 183. At 05:59am on 19 Sep 2008, manbearpigusa wrote:

    It seems that the media and the average US voter has let Sarah Palin off the hook for her general lack of knowledge of even basic national and international issues. Her home state is one of the most isolated places on Earth - geographically, socially and economically. While I don't blame Mrs. Palin for this, its a simple fact that her world is much smaller than the world she is potentially going to be leading.

    Palin's remarks have all been extremely scripted and she's been shielded from having to answer any questions. Of course, she's been studying for her eventual interviews and debates using index cards. Our (potentially) next President is using the same techniques that grade school students use to memorize test questions, to memorize McCains advisors economic and foreign policy?! Incidentally, McCain's advisers are made up almost entirely from George Bush's staff. It truely scares me to think that the McCain campaign thinks 6 weeks of cramming on index cards will somehow prepare her to lead us through the difficult decisions that will face our next President.

    By the way, the McCain supporters say that Barack Obama isn't as qualified to lead the country as Sarah Palin. Barack Obama grew up in Indonesia and received a Bachelors Degree in Political Science (International Relations) from Columbia. He then received a Doctorate in Constitutional Law (Law Degree) from Harvard (Graduated Magnum Cum Laude). I find it hard to believe that 2yrs of governing Alaska could ever translate to the vast knowledge required to deal with hard policy issues such as Iraq, Afghanistan, Russia and our economic woes.

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  • 184. At 06:09am on 19 Sep 2008, gunsandreligion wrote:

    Those of you who are uncertain as to how to vote
    will be impressed with the stupidity detector
    now that the bugs have been worked out.

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  • 185. At 06:10am on 19 Sep 2008, Arthur Putey wrote:

    Since Joe Lieberman's name has cropped up a few times here, I'm wondering if there are others who lean to my view that Lieberman let Al Gore down badly in 2000.

    Please correct me if I'm wrong, but in the nail-biting 2000 presidential contest, didn't Lieberman take plenty of time out to campaign for his own personal re-election to the Senate? It's a matter of history that Gore was ultimately defeated by the Supreme Court acting remarkably swiftly to halt the crucial recount in the nick of time for Bush, but had Lieberman spent much more time campaigning hard for a Democrat presidency then obviously the recount may never have even begun.

    So it seems to me that we've got Lieberman to "thank" - not entirely of course, but in part - for 8 years of divisive and destructive Republican government. In which case, one has to wonder which side he's been on for quite some time now.

    Or am I being somewhat unfair to the senator?

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  • 186. At 06:22am on 19 Sep 2008, nehick wrote:

    Neither candidate appears to have a "workable" plan regarding the economy or a revamping of the health care system. You are concerned they have no foreign policy experience? They don't understand the needs of their own people. . . and you expect them to understand global issues? It is much easier to throw mud at each other than speak about the issues.

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  • 187. At 06:39am on 19 Sep 2008, BillTyrone wrote:

    No. 164 - LadyBobbieBea

    Re: Personality Questionnaires and Psychometric Assessment tools.

    Yes, I remember well in the late 80s particularly with the evolution and development of Management Consultancy services interwoven into and on the back of the traditional accountancy practices, the increasing use of psychometric assessments. At the time I worked in the Executive Search and Selection field with one of the Big 6 global firms.

    Whilst a seeing a report on the 4 individuals would be of interest, I propose another angle here.

    What would be fascinating would be to see a psychometric report on certain individuals blogging here. By *certain* I mean some members, but not necessarily all, submitting say 15 to 20 plus posts daily.

    It is a funny old thing the web. It is effectively such a highly unaccountable medium that one wonders just how many Jekyll and Hyde or Walter Mitty-type characters are out there who love this medium and are addicted to it?

    Individuals who are desperate to portray a profile of knowledge, intellectual prowess and power. Who can forcibly get point after point and fact after fact across, often repetitively, without being eye to eye or in physical proximity to other human beings. Who also are at one with being as condescending and impolite as the moderators allow, from the remote safety of a keyboard.

    The reality? Its a funny old thing life experience and perception. What do you feel LadyBobbieBea?

    US electoral situation? As previously offered, all remains fair set for 4th Nov in my humble opinion.

    Regards, Bill

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  • 188. At 06:41am on 19 Sep 2008, Arthur Putey wrote:

    Apologies - I should have made it clear in my previous post (#185) that Lieberman was Al Gore's VP running mate in 2000.

    I know most of you will recall that inconvenient truth, but any reader unaware of Lieberman's place on the Democrats' ticket would probably find post #385 hard to follow.

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  • 189. At 06:48am on 19 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    185, Arthur.

    I will start by saying that the reason I didn't vote for Gore was because the Weasel (Lieberman) was his running mate. I stayed home. In the first place I always distrust sanctimonious people. They play on the god business to do whatever they want. I felt he was sleazy and sly.

    Surely I was proved right when he lost the Democratic primary in Connecticut because he felt his own desire for war outweighed his constituents' desire for peace. He then ran as an independent and cross-over Republicans voted him in.

    The present danger with the Weasel is that if McCain wins, the Weasel will be close beside him. The rumour is that he will be Secretary of State. That means war. He is so warped in his thinking that he looks to an enlarged war in the Middle East to protect Israel. He is a fool. It will destroy it. And us. But in the Weasel's eyes we are not important.

    If you google "Anita Mason" there is a very recent article by her ("Iranians Fear a McCain Presidency....") that deals with the consequences of a war with Iran.

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  • 190. At 06:58am on 19 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    184, Guns.

    Very funny video, and you, too.

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  • 191. At 07:00am on 19 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    187, Bill.

    C'mon. Don't be cute. Give us the list.

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  • 192. At 07:01am on 19 Sep 2008, gunsandreligion wrote:

    Well, Mr. BillTyrone and LadyBobbieBea, perhaps
    you could help me interpret the correlation between
    psychopaths, CEOs, and, possibly, politicians.

    One such link is described here.

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  • 193. At 07:05am on 19 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    187, Bill.

    I don't think the basis should be the number of posts, but the word count. Some people go on and on, and you have to scoll down twice to read their comment. Well, I have to admit I don't read those long ones. I pass on to one that shows a mastery of brevity.

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  • 194. At 07:05am on 19 Sep 2008, seanspa wrote:

    Sam, thanks for adding the sweeny quote. Am happy to have the original rather than the gene hunt version I suggested. Good move on captain slow and the hamster. Irreverancy rules.

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  • 195. At 07:15am on 19 Sep 2008, seanspa wrote:

    #189, Marbles, this is surely one of your nutty posts. You would prefer a politician to say what needs to be said (rather than what he believes) in order to get a party nomination? And then how dare those damned republicans vote for someone!

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  • 196. At 07:20am on 19 Sep 2008, DavidD wrote:

    I'm absolutely amazed that more American voters aren't disgusted by the totally cynical approach by the GOP to retain the White House, regardless of the consequences. It was fairly apparent that McCain was not the party leaderships preferred choice, but once they'd accepted the result they appear to have taken over McCains campaign strategy in the best interests of the GOP.
    So far, this campaign has been a defensive one, based almost entirely on diminishing Obamas appeal and offering nothing constructive in response.
    They noted the excitement that Obamas message of "change" elicited and we now have McCain shouting the same message.
    They noted the dismay that Hillarys' female supporters expressed at her being excluded from the Obama ticket and chose a woman as a running mate to exploit it, and not just any woman.
    She ticked all the boxes that McCain didn't. She's young, attractive, a middle class mother and her religious beliefs would align with the religious right. At no stage, it appears, was her suitability for the actual job considered.
    It reminds me more of selecting a mate from "Brides Online" than a serious attempt to provide a candidate who may have to lead the worlds most powerful nation.
    Are Americans prepared to vote a trophy bride into the second highest position in the land?
    Apparently the Republican strategists cynically believe they would.

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  • 197. At 07:29am on 19 Sep 2008, Parrisia wrote:

    Hitting on Palin will have a negative effect on Obama's campaign. He should simply focus on the issues like the economy, healthcare, unemployment, mortgages etc

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  • 198. At 07:41am on 19 Sep 2008, turningblueandgrey wrote:

    167 re 125 Allmymarbles

    My clarity must suffer in proportion to my getting wound up about a topic. I get more partisan too...

    Every foreclosure lowers property values and increases the cost of capital for everyone, not to mention either credit damage (if 3rd house was just a 'bad investment') or wiping out savings for the owner - all bad outcomes.

    My point was that we are seeing the fallout from collectively allowing elements of unseemly greed beyond 'fair profit', and the desire to get in on a boom before getting left out, disproportionately motivate speculators, mortgage brokers, and even single-home buyers. All made worse with naive assumptions that steep gains and easy refinancing were the new norm.

    So there is lots of blame to go 'round, but assigning blame won't solve the problem, and some flail away trying to lay all this on ACORN or community organizers...

    BillT - insightful. I hope we all converse with 'real people' in the election home stretch more than we post...

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  • 199. At 07:49am on 19 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    195, Sean.

    Not nutty at all. We vote for persons who reflect our views. That is what elections are all about. If we are pro-abortion, for instance, we do not expect our pro-abortion candidate to get into office and become pro-life. That is a betrayal of trust.

    The weasel lost the primary because he thought he was more important than the people voting for him. He then felt betrayed. Can you believe that? Did he have the gall to think he was representing himself?

    And as for the Republicans voting for him - they can have him, and good riddance.

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  • 200. At 07:50am on 19 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    196, David de Jong.

    Please, please, please, don't tell me you are naive.

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  • 201. At 07:55am on 19 Sep 2008, GrantBudding wrote:

    Is it important? Generally speaking, people vote for Vice-presidents. Palin may be an exception. But they DEFINATELY don't vote against Vice-presidents.

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  • 202. At 07:58am on 19 Sep 2008, GrantBudding wrote:

    That being said, don't forget Obama's running mate said the same thing about Obama, and suggested that Clinton would have been a better choice.

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  • 203. At 08:01am on 19 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    195, Sean.

    Having a sene of humor does not mean you are nutty. It may, in fact, show sanity because humor creates balance.

    I think the rabid zealots are nutty. I think the people who expect the world to end if their candidate doesn't get in are nutty. I think people who do not have a sense of humor are nutty.

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  • 204. At 08:05am on 19 Sep 2008, gunsandreligion wrote:

    David_de_Jong,

    Don't worry about anything. Our political leaders,
    knowing that they are out of their depth, have
    cleverly contrived a series of maneuvers design
    to downsize the USA's power and influence to
    that of a third world country without any oil.

    Have you ever wondered about those guys
    in outer Mongolia riding around on ponies?
    They ran a mighty empire once upon a time.

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  • 205. At 08:19am on 19 Sep 2008, Clive Hill wrote:

    #31 duhbuh
    Elegantly put.

    #48 proles
    I fear 'international law', so much deployed against the Iraq War - yet not the Kosovo war - is an oxymoron.

    The world is still like the wild west. The UNSC is a committee of barons protecting their national interests. It is strange to see it portrayed sometimes as though it were some social worker network for the world.

    The USA has still to come to terms with a fundamental paradox of globalisation.

    Your value as a human being depends on where you live.

    It has been a problem to US armed forces in Vietnam, Iraq and now Afghanistan that the US values US citizens above other human beings. It is built in to the US system. The US army has, in a sense, a duty of care to its soldiers.

    So if a car is driving toward a US checkpoint and the soldiers at the checkpoint fear it, they can shoot at the occupants. They do not have to worry that they will get sued of pursued through courts. There are, of course, courts martial for blatant abuses but at the lowest level the principle still applies - if the soldier fears for his or her life, he or she can kill those who 'threaten' without fear of retribution.

    They do not have to worry about whose father, mother, sister or brother is in the car. It's nobody like them nor with their rights.

    Colin Powell said in an interview I saw that the US army would perform its mission 'safely' - a strange term for a general to use.

    Bottom line is, as far as I can tell, no order can be given to a US soldier by an officer which might compromise that soldier's safety 'unreasonably'. That seems perfectly reasonable at face value but its effect is to devalue the lives of everyone else.

    That's not just true of the US army of course. The British army learned a great deal in this regard in Northern Ireland where it was dealing with its own citizens. I believe the effect was that the British army worries more about whom it kills.

    The result of all of that is that the USA is perceived as blundering around using brute force and killing anyone that gets in its way. It is not a fair perception. The USA shoulders more of the burden of world problems than any other country. It has lost more blood and treasure in pursuit of the problems of others than any other country.

    The question is, what effect would that have on foreign policy if Barack Obama came to power ?

    Jimmy Carter tried to have an ethical foreign policy with mixed results. Joe Biden believed US troops should have been sent to Darfur (http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Floor_Statement_of_Senator_Joe_Biden_on_the_Genocide_in_Darfur). This was from Feb 2006, sample:


    I am suggesting that NATO increase the support it is already lending to the African Union with a small number of fully equipped troops to help with command and control, communications, and dissemination of intelligence, on the ground. And I am proposing that these troops stay in Darfur only until the U.N. force has deployed all of its troops. My colleagues should also note that the resolution urges the Security Council to authorize a Chapter VII mission for Darfur--one with an adequate number of well-trained and equipped soldiers--as quickly as possible, so that NATO troops are not engaged in an open ended mission

    In a way, that is disingenuous because the Chinese would have blocked any Chapter VII (use of force) resolution in the UNSC and Joe Biden must have known that.

    Still, the principle is the same. Do US citizens want to start seeing foreign lives as as important as their own - or even nearly so ?

    Tony Blair is 'blamed' for the Iraq War because he wanted to remove Saddam Hussein and stop him murdering his own citizenry. The argument is that he said WMD were there to further that aim. Nobody seriously suggests Tony Blair wanted oil, perversely that accusation tends to be reserved for the US administration - despite obvious French and Russian interests in oil.

    Whatever you think about that, what is the 'national interest' in the international arena now ? Do you just ruthlessly further your own national interest at the expense of the lives of others ? That is the Chinese approach 'None of our business' rules their foreign policy on abuses committed for their economic ends - like in Block 12A in Darfur.

    Will Barack Obama have an ethical foreign policy ? And whether or not he does, should he ?

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  • 206. At 08:22am on 19 Sep 2008, BienvenueEnLouisiana wrote:

    Yall, please spare us from the stale conspiracy theories about 2000. Lieberman's record in 2000 must be set straight. In 2000 he was a popular Democrat who held the party line; he was not however above bi-partisanship. Even today, he supports decidedly liberal social policies, only differing with the party he caucuses with , the Dems., on the war and his support for McCain. Take his positions today as they are, but don't rewrite history.

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  • 207. At 08:31am on 19 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    198, Bluejay.

    I agree with everything you say about the mortgage situation. You view is compehensive and balanced.

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  • 208. At 08:36am on 19 Sep 2008, Clive Hill wrote:

    #187 BillTyrone
    You just needed to say 'I do not like JohnAAA'. I think you have said something similar before.

    I do not know why JohnAAA attracts such a level of abuse. He does not seem to be abusive - please cite examples I may have missed.

    Maybe you do not like what he is doing in John McCain's cause ? There are others here doing something similar in Barack Obama's camp, I believe Ed_Iglehart does but I cannot follow a lot of his links because my network does not allow it.

    I have no problem with Ed_Iglehart or JohnAAA.

    Or perhaps I am missing the point completely ? I am old.

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  • 209. At 08:49am on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    I still cannot understand why Justin Webb focusses on an obscure article, probably drafted for him, by a relatively obscure Senator known to be in the Obama camp. Surely the open public remarks of Bill Clinton which do not look to be from a script would be worth a blog post - people actually listen to the guy.

    ...............

    allmymarbles

    And you are not obsessive in your support for Obama ? The sun shines out of his rear end in your book. And you are obsessive in your attacks on Palin too.

    Do I tell jokes? Yes I do, and my best friend has to use a lot of comedy in his work. I feed him material quite often. He keeps coming back for more.

    What I notice in this blog is a clique of Obama groupies who can only laugh at each others' attempts at jokes.Try dealing with the issues - or is that above your pay grade ?

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  • 210. At 08:59am on 19 Sep 2008, DavidD wrote:

    200 allmymarbles

    No, not naive. I was raised on programmes like "That was the week that was" and hold a rather cynical view regarding politicians. What amazes me, in this election, is the blatant and cynical strategy adopted by the Republicans in creating their ticket. How it can benefit America outside of the GOP retaining the Presidency, is beyond me.
    Rumsfeld showed how dangerous an egocentric and self opiniated neocon can be in government. Ignoring the advice of experienced Chiefs of Staff in order to pursue his own amateur theories.
    Palin frightens me even more, and that's saying something.

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  • 211. At 09:04am on 19 Sep 2008, Schwerpunkt wrote:

    95. At 11:30pm on 18 Sep 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    "Wow. I tried to say that twice today, only to be referred to moderation. I hope the mods aren't on the take, because they sure don't want people to know about slimy Chicago politics. Is it fear of defamation, or fear of the Gotti family?"

    Heh heh, that is a good question. My piece also got pulled. So I guess it is not possible to refer to anyone's or anything's reputation.

    In which case I will just mention that Obama IS a Democrat and he IS from Chicago. 'Nuff said. :-P

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  • 212. At 09:16am on 19 Sep 2008, Arthur Putey wrote:

    Thanks, allmymarbles for post #189. The Anita Mason article titled "Iranians Fear A McCain Presidency" is an important read, and clearly the topic should be attracting the sort of mass media coverage that has been recently devoted to, for example, metaphors involving lipstick.

    And I wonder why a generally astute young man like Justin Webb has - as far as I am aware - thus far turned a blind eye to the key election issue of war involving Iran...

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  • 213. At 09:36am on 19 Sep 2008, MagicKirin wrote:

    ref #199

    Wrong Marbles, Liebermann thought it was more important to represent the interests of the citizens of CT than the Democratic party.

    Why is it hard for you to comprehend bipartsianship?

    The weasals are leaders of the democratic party who are in the tank to the tax cheat George Soros and the hate groups like Move on.

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  • 214. At 09:39am on 19 Sep 2008, FinMember wrote:

    Hei, I am a Canadian living in Finland. I have been following the presidential campaign daily. I don't favour one party over another, but I find it hard to believe that an intelligent? electorate would consider a party that has turned the US from a respected country with a large budgetary surplus to a despised entity worldwide. They have created a Global financial meltdown. And made international travel cumbersome and annoying. They have huge debt. All this because of an inexperienced, inept president. How could Americans think of retaining a failed policy making machine.

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  • 215. At 09:39am on 19 Sep 2008, MagicKirin wrote:

    ref #185

    You are listening to All the Marbles too much.

    Liebermann campaigned hard for Gore.

    Some facts Gore lost his own state, all recounts proved Bush won in FL. It was the Florida supreme court who exceeded it's authority. The majority were staunch Democrats.

    Gore is the weasal by the way.

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  • 216. At 09:42am on 19 Sep 2008, MagicKirin wrote:

    ref #173

    no I just disagree and ammune to Move on and Daily Kos talking points which you seem to spout verbatim.

    Plus you seem to have a problem with Democrats who think beyond party doctrine.

    If you were a republican you would have a problem with Lincoln Chafee or Olympia Snow

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  • 217. At 09:53am on 19 Sep 2008, LadyBobbieBea wrote:

    No 187 Bill Tyrone

    Thank you for your wonderful response. I enjoyed your overview. It is well evident you are used to processing extremely large amounts of information, spotting trends, and making useful deductions.

    I felt you quietly observing us, though you haven't spoken for awhile.

    It's late, so I better make this brief. I just wanted to honor your response.

    I like playing amateur cultural anthropologist. Political blogs are a fascinating phenomenon, as fascinating as the prolific bloggers who invest their efforts, energy, and passion to express their views in debate. I'm really benefiting from all that I have learned thus far. It's eye opening to say the least.

    I have discovered that clicking on a poster's name takes you into a profile archive that shows all an author has submitted on all BBC blogs. It's interesting to see the flow and evolution as well as finding their references. That's how I find Ed's. He's wonderful about sharing information with us.

    Addiction? Absolutely, but understandable. I think its healthy as long as it does not cause an imbalance in their lives.

    There's a lot of ego strokes to enticing a stranger from another culture half way round the world in a political debate that may or may not influence their future. Jousting with documentation? That's fun!

    The chest pounding and showboating doesn't bother me. I can see past that. I just don't like those that come on and indiscriminately spew condescending vitriol (fortunately she's a rare sighting). Their discontent is not with us or with the content here, but with their own lives.

    b

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  • 218. At 09:57am on 19 Sep 2008, blondesally85 wrote:

    #7 Timothy,

    Urm.....how do you KNOW Obama is shallow and narcissistic?

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  • 219. At 10:00am on 19 Sep 2008, gtkovacs wrote:

    Timothy R44: As has already been said, please feel free to offer your views about British politicians. As a matter of interest, how many British politicians can you name.

    No one outside the UK may give a monkey's who the British Prime Minister is. It doesn't matter that much in the big world out there. But President of the US matters, to everyone. Where the US goes, economically, foreign policy, culturally, that is where we Brits end up.

    So we have to take an interest. I, for one, won't tell you how to vote in your election, and I think it a mistake that our PM has apparently expressed a preference - if the other candidate wins he'll have to deal with him. But not telling americans how to vote does not mean we can't have opinions, or express them.

    (And this blog is on the site of the British Broadcasting Corporation.)

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  • 220. At 10:08am on 19 Sep 2008, blondesally85 wrote:

    #14 MAII

    OH please, the reason no one mentioned the imminent and inevitable recession in the debates wasn't because they didn't see it coming. It was because they didn't want to bring it up.

    How do I know this? Because one of the first things you learn about Economics is boom and bust cycles. They all just tried to fob the layman off with stories about how great THEY were making the economy. Confidence leads to self-perpetuating growth...for a while. Maybe they didn't know how bad it would be....but they knew it was coming. Didn't everyone? It's BASIC economics, not rocket science.

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  • 221. At 10:12am on 19 Sep 2008, Clive Hill wrote:

    From the Anita Mason piece on Iran and John McCain (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/anita-mason/iranians-fear-a-mccain-pr_b_127044.html):


    After Barack Obama's trip to Iraq, and fruitful meetings with Iraq's President, Abbas Maleki, about a timeline for troop withdrawal and an Iraqi takeover, John McCain made a tactical political decision. He took credit for Obama's coup by declaring he would end the war in Iraq and bring the troops home. President Bush seconded it. Obama was outflanked. The Republicans stole his trump card - the ending of the war in Iraq. But are they ending it? That remains to be seen.

    The president of Iraq is Jalal Talabani. She probably meant the prime minister, Nouri al-Maliki.

    Barack Obama seems to have timed his visit partly to coincide with the conclusion of negotiation with Iraq on the Status of Force Agreement.

    He has expressed his views on the effect of the 'surge' here:
    http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/40d22fc0-7ae9-11dd-adbe-000077b07658.html

    Sample:

    Mr Obama’s comments, in an interview with Fox News – a channel which his campaign has clashed with in the past – come after months in which he has consistently outlined his opposition to the surge, which he has described as a tactical success imposed on a strategic blunder.

    “I think that the surge has succeeded in ways that nobody anticipated,” he said. “I’ve already said it’s succeeded beyond our wildest dreams.”


    I do not believe either candidate would do anything much different over Iraq.

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  • 222. At 10:17am on 19 Sep 2008, blondesally85 wrote:

    #22 Timothy

    Maybe I would get over my own self-importance and ask myself WHY these people were desperately wanting me to listen to them, rather than voting for the other man just to spite them.

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  • 223. At 10:29am on 19 Sep 2008, FinMember wrote:

    It seems strange to read so many posts that support one party or another, since we have no effect on American politics as individuals. I hope moderators keep comments from Americans to a minimum, this a European forum.
    Does Palin scare anyone else? There is no Global warning. Polar bears are not endangered. I won't co-operate with a legal enquiry because it's "tainted". Shades of impeached Nixon. She anwered questions when interviewed with "witty" remarks not real substantive answers. How can any thinking person give her credibility. All politicians have faults both Dems and Gop but hers should have disqualified her as a vice-presidential candidate.

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  • 224. At 10:43am on 19 Sep 2008, blondesally85 wrote:

    #46

    "Librarian Sam"

    simple but hilarious

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  • 225. At 10:53am on 19 Sep 2008, Xie_Ming wrote:

    I find it instructive that the initiative for rescuing the financial situation came from Nancy Pelosi and not from the White House.

    We all realize that Palin is not chosen for her
    abilities but for the identification with fundies.

    Has McCain expressed any ideas on issues?

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  • 226. At 11:02am on 19 Sep 2008, ear-to-the-ground wrote:

    hey justin, check this out...

    mccain doesnt seem to know where spain is, and that its a member of NATO and an ally. not a good thing, to be smack talking an ally. this makes one think that if mccain is ellected, america will run out of friends.... fast....

    anyway, here's the link: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2008/09/18/bizarre-mccain-remarks-ap_n_127346.html

    and no. 20 thank you for finally saying so. i would want a president who is smarter than me over someone i feel i could have a beer with and talk to "like a regular person". im so sick of the 'elietist' arguement. it just doesnt make sense.

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  • 227. At 11:21am on 19 Sep 2008, Clive Hill wrote:

    #225 Xie_Ming


    ...We all realize that Palin is not chosen for her abilities but for the identification with fundies...

    I don't.

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  • 228. At 11:25am on 19 Sep 2008, Parrisia wrote:

    I read from a BBC online newspiece: "Details of how an e-mail account of US Republican vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin was hacked have emerged. It is thought the attackers exploited the password resetting system of Yahoo's e-mail service. Details about Mrs Palin's life pulled from public sources reportedly helped defeat security questions. Information from Wikipedia and other online databases helped to establish Mrs Palin's date of birth, zip code and other personal information. Armed with this, the attackers convinced the Yahoo password re-setting system they warranted access and allowed them to re-set the password and then get at the account".

    While not discounting the serious security issue that has emerged and which Yahoo needs to address, isn't it a bit irresponsible on the part of one of the two possible, future Vice Presidents of the USA to be using "plain", non-government, non-extra secure email systems? Will she be doing the same when she does become VP?

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  • 229. At 11:31am on 19 Sep 2008, paul939 wrote:

    Palin thinks she can see Russia from Alaska. McCain doesn't seem to know a country called Spain exists. weird. I'm pretty sure Obama has more foriegn policy credentials than these two.

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  • 230. At 11:31am on 19 Sep 2008, Tramp wrote:

    Sarah Palin has enormous foreign policy credentials. Here they are in full:

    1. She's now got a passport.
    2. She's been to Germany, Kuwait and Mexico. And Iraq was somewhere in the distance when she was in Kuwait.
    3. She's been to Ireland (OK she didn't get out of the plane while it was being refuelled but it counts).
    4. Gibson told her what the Bush Doctrine is (although she may have forgotten by now).
    5. She can SEE Russia from Alaska. You don't need to know anything about a place so long as you can see it with your own eyes.
    6. Sometime soon she's going to break her duck and actually get to meet the leader of a foreign country.
    7. Alaska produces 250% of the US's energy needs (or whatever figure Palin is quoting at the moment).
    8 Er, that's it.

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  • 231. At 11:35am on 19 Sep 2008, Clive Hill wrote:

    #225 Xie_Ming


    I find it instructive that the initiative for rescuing the financial situation came from Nancy Pelosi and not from the White House

    That does not seem to be what this article, at least, is saying (http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/26780312/)

    Sample:

    WASHINGTON - Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson briefed congressional leaders Thursday night on plans to address the "illiquid assets" on U.S. financial institutions' balance sheets, possibly including the creation of a government
    facility to take on financial firms' bad debts

    Further on:

    Paulson briefed House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other congressional leaders at a meeting on Thursday night. Following the meeting, Paulson said the group's discussion focused on financial institutions' illiquid assets. "What we are working on now is an approach to deal with the systemic risk and stresses in our capital markets," Paulson said.

    Perhaps that second part was what made you think so.

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  • 232. At 11:40am on 19 Sep 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Change!
    ;-)
    ed

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  • 233. At 11:57am on 19 Sep 2008, Schwerpunkt wrote:

    214. "And made international travel cumbersome and annoying"

    Um, that would actually be the folks trying to blow up fly aircraft into buildings who have done that.

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  • 234. At 12:10pm on 19 Sep 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Sounds like a bailout at taxpayers' expense. We are on the verge of agreeing to buy up all the trash at prices which will leave the holders smiling. Some solution! More "Buddy Capitalism"

    The Gambling houses (Sorry, Markets) are cracking out the champagne A bit premature, I suspect.

    Ed McScrooge

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  • 235. At 12:24pm on 19 Sep 2008, MagicKirin wrote:

    ref #226

    Well I dont think the terrorist apeaser Zapatero is a friend of the U.S. He pulled out of a commitment to the U.S without consultation

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  • 236. At 12:32pm on 19 Sep 2008, blondesally85 wrote:

    #165

    Im glad someone else agrees with me about Sam's posts!!

    The naysayers are just jealous. Either that or they disagree with him on his position on Kylie....

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  • 237. At 12:44pm on 19 Sep 2008, Mark wrote:

    231.

    What you have mmissed is that before Paulson acted Pelosi had already written to Bush urging that action be taken and offering to extend congress to ensure a measure was passed.

    That said, I hope she demands a very high price for the bail-out Paulson is proposing. In effect, the taxpayer will take over the banking debts and the banks will be free to resume poor lending practices because the dud loans will be cleaned off their balance sheets. If it were me, I'd want:

    1. A 10 year ban on all bonuses, stock options and other fringe benefits for the companies involved. There is no way they should be allowed to line their pockets after the bail-out.
    2. The compulsory presence of a director from each of the SEC, Treasury, Auditor General's Office, and the 'Resolution' company on their boards for 10 years.
    3. Equity issued to government equal to the debt taken on by the 'resolution' trust.
    4. The restoration of the top tax rate to its level before the Bush tax cuts to ensure that the bail-out can be paid for, with immediate effect.

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  • 238. At 12:52pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    MarkinOxford

    That is about as fatuous a suggestion as I could imagine. Not even Pelosi would be so dumb. Was it a joke ?

    And while Pelosi was offering to extend Congress, Harry Reid was saying wveryone should go home, "we don't know what to do"

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  • 239. At 1:00pm on 19 Sep 2008, Clive Hill wrote:

    #234 Ed_Iglehart


    Sounds like a bailout at taxpayers' expense. We are on the verge of agreeing to buy up all the trash at prices which will leave the holders smiling. Some solution! More "Buddy Capitalism"

    I don't think so. The key question will be how the new agency prices (for purchase and sale) the securitised debt it takes on.

    Something like this was necessary. The problem is that financial institutions are getting hammered partly because of the amount of this 'toxic debt' they hold. It has a value but nobody is sure what it is. The problem is that that undertainty is destroying their reputations.

    In that situation, they just want a dustbin to chuck it in, almost whatever the price. I imagine small companies will crop up who buy this stuff from the government and do the usual debt handling stuff on it.

    The key will be the price the government buys and sells it at.

    #237 MarkfromOxford
    Well, it's helpful to extend congress but 'urging action' comes a little late, given the regulatory changes proposed by the Bush administration which were defeated by Democrats.

    From the New Yoork Times, September 11th 2003. I can't post the link, the post won't post with it in.

    Sample:

    The Bush administration today recommended the most significant regulatory overhaul in the housing finance industry since the savings and loan crisis a decade ago.

    Under the plan, disclosed at a Congressional hearing today, a new agency would be created within the Treasury Department to assume supervision of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the government-sponsored companies that are the two largest players in the mortgage lending industry

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  • 240. At 1:01pm on 19 Sep 2008, Clive Hill wrote:

    #238 JohnAAA
    I asked earlier for an example of you being abusive.

    You just supplied it.

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  • 241. At 1:08pm on 19 Sep 2008, john-In-Dublin wrote:

    # 196, David_de_Jong

    A fine post - this in particular [re Palin] caused one of those rare but genuine 'LOL's

    "It reminds me more of selecting a mate from "Brides Online" than a serious attempt to provide a candidate who may have to lead the worlds most powerful nation."

    :-)

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  • 242. At 1:08pm on 19 Sep 2008, Mark wrote:

    238

    I don't think the government should be in the business of bailing out the banks to the tune of $500 billion without exacting a very heavy price. No supply without redress of grievance.

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  • 243. At 1:11pm on 19 Sep 2008, john-In-Dublin wrote:

    # 197 - Parrisia - "Hitting on Palin will have a negative effect on Obama's campaign. He should simply focus on the issues like the economy, healthcare, unemployment, mortgages etc"

    "Hitting on Palin"?? Now there's a rumour I hadn't heard before. Has Michelle been told? Or indeed 'The First Dude' [Palin's husband.]

    ;-)



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  • 244. At 1:13pm on 19 Sep 2008, SaintDominick wrote:

    Liebermann is an opportunist willing to compromise his principles in exchange for a prominent job in government. He jumped on McCain's bandwagon because he thought he had a shot at the VP spot. He now realizes he was used and has been conspicuous by his absence since Palin was picked. Hopefully this is the end of his political career. although I would not be surprised if McCain throws him a bone if he is elected President. Let's face it, they both have a lot in common.

    I suspect the impending decision to bail out dozens of failing banks, financial institutions, and insurance companies saddled with bad loans has more to do with the need to prevent a total collapse of our financial system - and the need to protect bank depositors, investors, and pensioners -than with willingness to reward inept or unscrupulous. The unfortunate reality is that the US government has no choice but to step in and prevent a complete meltdown of our capitalist system. Bailing out failed institutions and then selling their assets to prosperous firms is not a socialist concept. Obviously, there is risk involved, dependent on how the bail out is implemented, but not near as much as letting the centerpiece of capitalism fail. One of the biggest problems is going to be the use of borrowed capital - or the effects of printing massive amounts of dollars - to carry out the bailout. The dollar may very well end up being as worthless as the old Italian lira.

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  • 245. At 1:19pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    chillO

    I don't think it was abusive in any personal sense. I thought those proposals were tongue in cheek, they look so totally impracticable - and said so. Politics is the art of the possible, not wishlists.

    Certainly not like being called a racist time after time without cause.

    But I heed you point, as you seeemd to be saying earlier I am normally polite, I don't like the ad hominem stuff between posters.

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  • 246. At 1:27pm on 19 Sep 2008, john-In-Dublin wrote:

    #230 from APbbforum

    Yet another LOL!

    What is it Young Mr Grace says? 'You're all doing very well!'?

    (Weeeellll - not QUITE all...)

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  • 247. At 1:27pm on 19 Sep 2008, Arthur Putey wrote:

    #238 JohnAAA: "Not even Pelosi would be so dumb. Was it a joke?"

    Vigourous debate is one thing, but this kind of comment is surely not too many light years away from being libellous, at least according to my dictionary.

    I wonder if Nancy Pelosi reads this blog sometimes?

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  • 248. At 1:31pm on 19 Sep 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Chill0 (205),

    Good questions. We shall see what we shall see.

    Peace to all,
    ed

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  • 249. At 1:35pm on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #233

    CNN this morning. Obama 233, McCain 189. 116 toss up.

    Statistical Sam

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  • 250. At 1:38pm on 19 Sep 2008, AndreainNY wrote:

    47. seanspa:

    "With the country split down the middle, it seems to me the only way to make progress rather than indulge in bunfights is to agree on what you can agree on and at least tackle those issues. I'm not aware of Obama reaching out in the same way, but I would be happy to hear otherwise."

    I agree. What I like most about McCain is his bipartisanship. Were he to win, he'd calm down a lot of the left by giving them a voice again.

    Bush just ignored them, which has resulted in a, shall we say, sensitivity to anything related to Bush's term. Witness the people voting against him despite the fact that he's entering retirement. Moving on will be a challenge for them.

    Obama has never done anything even close to McCain's bipartisan work, but that doesn't bother his supporters who aren't really interested in bipartisanship. They're interested in getting their guy in the power seat. Nothing unusual about this. It's how the game is played, and they're playing to win.

    I'll be greatly relieved if McCain wins because maybe we'll finally get out of this polarizing political cycle.



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  • 251. At 1:38pm on 19 Sep 2008, Clive Hill wrote:

    #245 JohnAAA
    Thank you.

    I know you were severely goaded in earlier threads.

    The schools are back. That may help on the abuse front generally.

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  • 252. At 1:40pm on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    237, 241

    Mark,

    All very solid ideas, particularly the tax suggestion. Although I doubt the SEC could provide the right number of folks to provide good governance and oversight on those boards, it really doesn't have the staff. They could force a senior auditor from one of the accounting firms to be hired in that role.

    On the benfits I would place the executive on a high percentage (70-80%) of variable pay based on return to shareolders from the pre crash position. Otherwise they will just load up their base pay. Also, middle managers should not be punished for this, it was the executive level who made the mistakes.

    Enjoy the pub!

    Sam

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  • 253. At 1:40pm on 19 Sep 2008, Xie_Ming wrote:

    From the American posters here, I have come to the conclusion that World leadership must be passed to other hands.

    Since Britain offers Blair, his clone Miliband, and the unfortunate Gordon, we must exclude its sons and daughters.

    Who, besides Hans Blix, could assume the mantle of leadership?

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  • 254. At 1:41pm on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #238

    John,

    Are you sure you are not running for some office as a Republican? Someone makes a well reasoned, economically sound suggestion, albeit it could use a few tweaks and you insult them and offer nothing of your own.

    Sad Sam

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  • 255. At 1:42pm on 19 Sep 2008, AndreainNY wrote:

    244. DominickVila:

    "Liebermann is an opportunist willing to compromise his principles in exchange for a prominent job in government. He jumped on McCain's bandwagon because he thought he had a shot at the VP spot. He now realizes he was used and has been conspicuous by his absence since Palin was picked. Hopefully this is the end of his political career."

    Lieberman has a pretty strong following in Connecticut, from what relatives there tell me.

    A lot of McCain supporters were sorry he wasn't chosen as VP. I like him, but he would have hurt the ticket, I think, which is too bad.


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  • 256. At 1:43pm on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #228

    More to the point not following even basic security standards.

    Oh dear.

    Sam

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  • 257. At 1:53pm on 19 Sep 2008, john-In-Dublin wrote:

    # 209 John AAAAAAAAAAAAA
    "I still cannot understand why Justin Webb focusses on an obscure article, probably drafted for him, by a relatively obscure Senator known to be in the Obama camp. Surely the open public remarks of Bill Clinton which do not look to be from a script would be worth a blog post - people actually listen to the guy."


    1 On Hagel, from Wiki - "Hagel's name was widely rumoured to be one of those considered by George W. Bush as a potential running mate in the 2000 election."

    2 JAAA, you're being disingenuous again. You know perfectly well why Justin doesn't do what you want. It's because, of course, as you point out ad nauseam, he's a leftie-commie-pinko-leftie-liberal working with all those other leftie-commie-pinko-leftie-liberals at the leftie-commie-pinko-leftie-liberal BBC. [A leftie-commie-pinko-leftie-liberal being anyone to the right of JohnAAA and/or Attila The Hun.)

    3 What he should do, to be 'fair and balanced', is be like you - ie relentlessly trawl the web for any claim or article in any way against the Dems and/or pro the Republicans, regardless of how blatantly biased, and print it as fact. If necessary, only referring to those bits which are anti-Obama. Whilst of course pointing out that he's not in any way biased - it's just those who disagree with him who are biased.

    4 As I recall you thought it worth mentioning more than once that Lady Ponsonby De Vere Snootiana de Rothschild [or whatever she's called], a noted 'PUMA' who I believe said even before he beat HRC that she wouldn't back Obama, had come out for Clinton. So any Dem who's for McC is news, and any Rep who's for Obama is irrelevant propaganda.

    Ho hum

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  • 258. At 1:58pm on 19 Sep 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Chill (208),

    I have no problem with Ed_Iglehart or JohnAAA."
    Neither do I. I just scroll past the one and admire the other. ;-)

    I'll Just take the opportunity to thank Bill Tyrone, Ms Marbles, Sam, Jaybird, G&R, Dublin John, Dominick, Arthur, Lady Bobbie, Mark (especially #237), the "clique of Obama groupies", and others for their useful contributions.

    Chill,
    "From the New Yoork Times, September 11th 2003. I can't post the link, the post won't post with it in."
    The link WILL post if you convert all ampersands (&) to & This can be done as "search & replace" in most text editors (or "manually") Details here (scroll down)

    Peace and prosperity to all
    ed



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  • 259. At 2:00pm on 19 Sep 2008, Nozlohosp wrote:

    TimothyR444. I have great respect for all Americans but I grow tired when they suggest that people from other countries "keep out" of their election. We now live in a globalised but unipolar world with the hegemonic USA involved in virtually every country's affairs in one way or another. Many national economies are in or about to go into recession originally caused by economic events in the USA. The current US led "war on terror" has made all our lives more dangerous than before. The UN, WTO, IMF, ICC are just a few of the international organisations that are either based in the US, almost run by the US or in the case of the ICC not supported by the US and hence weaker.

    The result of the forthcoming Presidential election will affect every country on this planet and that is why we all have a right to express our concerns and champion whosomever we feel will do the best job for Planet Earth. Americans can be very insular and inward looking and yet the administrations over the years have made the USA the global power that it is now. We cannot avoid being interested in the US Election whether we like it or not.

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  • 260. At 2:01pm on 19 Sep 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    BlondeSally, I forgot to thank you, though I had meant to.

    [smarmy smile]
    ed



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  • 261. At 2:05pm on 19 Sep 2008, Candace9839 wrote:

    Re:#230. Not so fast, she's been to Canada too...

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  • 262. At 2:07pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    ArthurPuter

    Come on, you can't be real. After all the invective flung at Palin - some of it salacious smearing - including plenty of derogatory lots of comments on her intelligence, that sounds a very synthetic point you are making.

    Pot, Black. Double standards ?

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  • 263. At 2:07pm on 19 Sep 2008, Xie_Ming wrote:

    # 205

    It would help to understand that the USA is repeating the imperialist attempts of the Britain in 1918-1932 in Iraq for the same reasons and is being thrown out for the same reasons. The only difference is the additional NeoCon idea of aiding Israel.

    ________________________

    Anyone not appreciating that the designation of Palin was a sop to the evangelical retards (some 30 % of the electorate) is either dull or disingenuous.

    _____________

    It is really time for the civilized folk in this World to start organizing an international body outside of and independent of, the USA.

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  • 264. At 2:12pm on 19 Sep 2008, Adrian_Evitts wrote:

    I hope that Hagel's emphasis upon Palin's ignorance of the wider world will carry some weight with somebody. Look what happened when the American electorate failed to do this with George and put him in the number 1 spot ... millions have paid and are still paying a very heavy price.

    Somebody needs to ask her some basic questions in an interview scenario - who's the new president of Pakistan? etc. - not to mention a few probing enquiries concerning the alleged abuse of her office of governor to rid herself of her trooper ex-brother-in-law. Remember the sacking of all those prosecutors who wouldn't tow the Bush line?

    Justin, I don't want to burn any witches. A new broom is needed at the Whitehouse, that's for sure - but does any seriously think that Palin and her broomstick will do any better than George?

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  • 265. At 2:14pm on 19 Sep 2008, Cortez wrote:

    Sarah Palin was just picked in an attempt to steal votes from the middle class white female voters in the midwest. She has little to no foreign policy experience and she governor of a state that has less people than most cities across the United States. She has also made quiet a few false statements about her personal record(Female George Bush neocon).

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  • 266. At 2:14pm on 19 Sep 2008, Mark wrote:

    240, 247

    Thank you. It is interesting to see what is regarded as the 'art of the possible'.

    When a private investor bails out a company in trouble it is usual to demand both equity and board representation as part of the deal. It is also pretty usual to make stipulations regarding remuneration until such time as the company is restored to financial health. Part of the cause of the present financial mess is the way in which remuneration works in the banking industry, and it is time that was tidied up. The executive managers all deserve to have their unexercised stock options cancelled.

    Or is it the idea of reversing the tax cut that frights so much? The tax cut will lapse in two years time and it has very little chance of being restored. The only issue about bringing its lapse forward is that it would represent a political humiliation for the chimp in chief. I suspect that is a very small price to ask for signing a $500 billion cheque.

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  • 267. At 2:15pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    RCP right now, rujningAVERAGES of all the major polls, not just a single poll :

    McCain/Palin 216 , Obama/Biden 202 , toss-ups 120

    More statistical than quoting one poll - less risk of poll skewing by underrepresnation of overrepresentation of particular demographics. CNN polls have a reputaion for skewing.

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  • 268. At 2:18pm on 19 Sep 2008, AndreainNY wrote:

    As predicted, McCain spoke at length about the F'mac/e situation, including his concern about it beforehand, the role of their lobbyists and the role of the former head on Obama's team.

    CNN is airing it now.

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  • 269. At 2:19pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    Sam

    Just because you regard something as reasonable and economically sound does not make it so. If defining the terms are your pay grade - why are you not in there telling them ?

    You seem to advance your opinions as fact. I thought the Dismal Science preferred fact to opinion ?

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  • 270. At 2:23pm on 19 Sep 2008, Mark wrote:

    252, 254

    Thanks Sam ... I'll be writing the book for the next couple of hours before I partake. You may be right about the remuneration thing. My point really is that the senior directors and managers cannot be allowed to return to their earlier ways: there needs to be some reform and even penalty for what has happened. Otherwise, it is just back to the trough. Cancelling their stock options is one such possibility, but I'd like to see a rather tougher line than that. Ordinary people will want to see that justice has been done in return for helping out.

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  • 271. At 2:31pm on 19 Sep 2008, dceilar wrote:

    I don't agree with the State bailing out these banks either. A company cannot have profits that are private yet have losses that are socialised.

    The taxpayer won't get their money back. In my opinion I'll nationalise them (in some cases without compensation) then sell them off later so there is no net loss to the taxpayer.

    If this current deal goes through then the US has already become a command control economy. The glory that is Wall Street is now a heavy weight. USA's days as a superpower may be numbered. The BBC's Robert Peston has written a good article about this.

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  • 272. At 2:39pm on 19 Sep 2008, TLMiles wrote:

    Perhaps "this kind of thing will have an effect on independents", but the thing referenced above (Hagel's criticism of Palin) could hardly have an effect upon independent voters outside Nebraska or the press corps. People who follow the insiders' horse race will know (and maybe care) who Hagel is. If they respect or are swayed by his views, they are members of the political ruling class, and have long ago made up their minds about whom they will support, or else have made up their minds about Hagel (who folks like you have been speculating will change the "r" after his name to a "d" for several years).

    The important point here that only a "Washington insider" would find this important to the choice of who will be the next President. People like me come to the BBC for something better than the "journalism" we've come to expect in the United States: all "strategy" and no content. The BBC output targeted at us over the last few years has come, increasingly, to resemble this. It is not flattering, helpful, or frankly, worth listening to.

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  • 273. At 2:44pm on 19 Sep 2008, FinMember wrote:

    To poster 233
    Bush was asleep at the switch and had been warned of possible terrorist attacks, which he ignored. To compensate he instigated draconian measures. The people who created 9/11 could have been stopped by a President who didn't spend Almost half his time in office on vacation.

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  • 274. At 2:46pm on 19 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    john in doublin,

    don't take JohnAAA too seriously. He is here to humour the rest of the bloggers. Every town has a clown. Wouldn't be an interesting blog if Justin lost his most fierce blogger, now would it?

    read with an open mind, there is only some 20 ppl who write on this blog, hardly decisive for the campaign.

    JohnAAA wishes to convert us all into "God's republican soldiers".

    P.S...
    Whoever is in America and Canada, download Michael Moore's Slacker Uprising latest movie come next Friday.

    JohnAAA, you need not apply. You feeling might get hurt. It's a bit "anti-patriotic" by your definition, and it has lots of bits of certain christians that even Jesus would go "They ain't my people"

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  • 275. At 2:53pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    JohninDublin

    The average user of the BBC website has never heard of Chuck Hagel. Virtually all of them will have heard of Bill Clinton. But Clinton's remarks are not posted - even as a paragraph musing about where the Clintons might stand right now.

    It is Mr Webb who is scratching around for stuff. Eagleton, Hagel, it is nonsense.

    Yes, I push one side. Lots of other people push the other side. It is called debate. I truly feel the BBC is biased - so I say so. If you don't agree, that is your privilege.

    I did not know the de Rothschild person, I simply posted an article saying that a Clinton fundraiser had declared for McCain. As against Obama. I did not repeat the point. Others may have. But as you mention it - I would have thought that fact was just as significant as anything Hagel says right now. There is a known uncertainty about whether PUMA may be negligible or may be significant in the end-results. I believe she was then brought on to TV to explain, her action was the focus of quite a bit of press reporting. ?

    By contrast, what Biden says (or has written for him) is I suggest of infinitesimal news interest. Did anyone other than Justin Webb raise it as mattering ?

    Was Justin Webb fed it fed it from TeamObama or DNC ? How else would he find such an obscure article ?

    And the central point remains. Mr Webb says the Hagel article is important. That is nonsense.

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  • 276. At 3:02pm on 19 Sep 2008, Clive Hill wrote:

    #258 Ed_Iglehart
    ..and here(NY Times article Sept 11th 2003) it is.

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  • 277. At 3:06pm on 19 Sep 2008, Xie_Ming wrote:

    # 263

    I can't imagine why #263 seems to have been upsetting.

    Britain invaded and occupied Iraq 1918-1932 for the same motives (oil and bases) as Bush and Blair did recently.

    And got thrown out for the same reasons.

    The only additional element was the NeoCon desire to aid Israel.

    For those who wish, references to the historical data can be supplied.

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  • 278. At 3:15pm on 19 Sep 2008, Clive Hill wrote:

    Dear Moderators,

    You did #274 before #269 - #273

    Shome mishtake shurely ?

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  • 279. At 3:24pm on 19 Sep 2008, Patrick Lockyer wrote:

    As a Brit in sunny Florida I listen to right wing radio and weep. They state today that they would prefer to vote for a guy who says he will be the Commander in chief on day one rather than one who states that he is a World Citizen. We are a global community and the world have just bailed out the USA financially. But still the 'righties' think that isolationism is the route to go. I write for Times-Union Jacksonville Fl and American Chronicle. Google 'patrick lockyer' to se my rants on the US foreign policy.

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  • 280. At 3:27pm on 19 Sep 2008, GarthLondon wrote:

    44. Gary_A_Hill wrote:

    joshkin2001 (#39), actually, this is not a "Hobson's choice." Hobson's choice was take the horse that's offered or none at all.

    "Horns of a dilemma" might be more apt.

    .....

    Apologies Gary, but it does (for Joshkin2001 at least) actually represent a Hobson's Choice. A Hobson's choice is a free choice in which only one option is offered. Joshkin2001 is saying Obama and Palin are effectivly the same choice, and that Biden and McCain are a non option. I don't agree with him, but just a note on semantics. He structured his argument rather poorly. He would have done better to argue it as more of a 'Mortons Fork'

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  • 281. At 3:31pm on 19 Sep 2008, Punkin101 wrote:

    Chuck Hagel is from the Washington cesspool and the Trilateral good-ole-boys group.
    I'm not narrow minded by any means, and I am sure Sarah Palin has alot to learn and true to any political canidate, she may have somethings she would like to hide.
    We need to overhaul the government and get rid of all the dead wood that is padding their pockets at our expense, and bring in some " Newbies" and fresh blood that hasn't forgotten how to WORK!
    Sarah Palin has a stong will, and wants to work for the middle class.
    If she has to takeover as President, heaven forbid, She will have advisors to help her, and as others have said, Congress and the house will have her under a microscope.
    So what is the problem?
    I think the good ole boys EGO's are getting hurt !

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  • 282. At 3:32pm on 19 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1842179,00.html?cnn=yes

    I thought this to be interesting.

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  • 283. At 3:37pm on 19 Sep 2008, Clive Hill wrote:

    #277 Xie_Ming
    Yes, please supply links to the historical data you are using.

    Not least because the League of Nations gave Britain a mandate to rule Iraq after WWI.

    I would be interested to see where your ideas came from.

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  • 284. At 3:44pm on 19 Sep 2008, Parrisia wrote:

    John in Dublic (#243) - you know what I am trying to say :)

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  • 285. At 3:48pm on 19 Sep 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    John,

    "RCP right now, rujningAVERAGES of all the major polls, not just a single poll :"
    Also "back loaded", in that it averages older polls in with the most recent. It is therefore, by definition not very "up to date". The betting, on the other hand is, and ias moving steadily away from McCain't

    ;-)
    ed

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  • 286. At 3:55pm on 19 Sep 2008, DavidD wrote:

    Are there no laws in the USA that holds directors responsible for financial losses due to reckless management?

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  • 287. At 3:56pm on 19 Sep 2008, goingconcern wrote:

    Is it just me or does Palin remind others of Australia's famously ignorant politician Pauline Hanson.

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  • 288. At 3:59pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:



    Palin Derangement Syndrome is rampant in New York - the cultural battle rages on. Heads are popping. It is amazing the hatred nthat Palin has engenderd - pure hatred. This is a real cultural war.

    http://tinyurl.com/4l35sk

    ................................


    Second ad on Obama and Fannie Mae :

    http://tinyurl.com/4yjpkc

    This could run and run.

    ...........................

    LA Times blogger raises questions about the ambiguities in Bill Clinton's statement.

    It is a week since Obama and Clinton metr in Harlem. A week goes by and Clinton is still getting redy to campaign hard.

    Sitting on the fence a bit ?

    http://tinyurl.com/4yjpkc

    ................................


    I wonder what Mort Sahl would have thought of all this.

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  • 289. At 3:59pm on 19 Sep 2008, Gary_A_Hill wrote:

    ArthurPutey (#185), I don't think that's a fair analysis. It's more appropriate to blame Gore for selecting Lieberman. The whole thing is more complicated than you suggest, and we can only speculate. Had the Supreme Court not intervened (improperly, in my view), the vote in Florida might still have gone to Bush. You might also reasonably assign some of the blame to Nader, who was on the ballot in Florida, although we cannot know how many of his votes might have gone to Gore. I would also point out that Gore did not carry his own state, suggesting that he was a weak candidate in his own right.

    Anyway, that's in the hands of historians now, and the more interesting question is what will happen on November 4th.

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  • 290. At 3:59pm on 19 Sep 2008, watermanaquarius wrote:

    JohnAAA
    With compliments flying from left and right might I take this opportunity to compliment you on your speed at typing. Your long drawn out pieces appear every few minutes, and although it is always 99% anti-Obama instead of supporting your man- ie 99% pro-Mccain, it comes over as a fraction monoglot , but you have every right to do it your way.
    Ed offered simple instructions for everyone re placing links which make for faster reading than copying and pasting the tinyurls you so regularily use.
    AndreainNY, David_C, chill0, young Mr Grace et al have seen their copy benefitted by following his simple instructions. Try it. I can not guarantie that either Ed, I , or others will read the same repeated stuff in the new format but it will sure look smarter.

    Sam- Appreciate your humerous and serious deeper postings very much, but have forgotten what the abbreviated capital letters stand for, and am too lazy to track back through the 1000s of postings to find it.
    Would it be possible [ as Ed does with his links instructions] to repeat it [ in your own time when the mood strikes of course]. Thanks

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  • 291. At 4:01pm on 19 Sep 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    #135, bluejay60 :
    Comparing Sweden's taxes to households in NY State.

    The bottom line... 42 percent is better than 50 percent, but not by much. The citizens of the US don't see the returns, since much of their taxes go to pay for wars, and very selective social programs (those over 65 years old and the very poor).

    I don't know what you want to call it, but it seems to be a system that mostly favors three groups, the very poor, the elderly, and the very rich.

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  • 292. At 4:05pm on 19 Sep 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    #278, chill0 :

    I believe it is a queuing system. Multiple censors reviewing groups of posts. Some are fast, and others are having tea time.

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  • 293. At 4:07pm on 19 Sep 2008, Kristopher wrote:

    Hagel the RINO ain't keeping his job after this.

    He will be replaced as soon as possible, mark my words. You do not get away with supporting a socialist presidential candidate while in the Republican Party.

    "Top Republican"? Only in the BBC's dreams.

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  • 294. At 4:10pm on 19 Sep 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Chill0,

    "the League of Nations gave Britain a mandate to rule Iraq after WWI."
    More like the British and French demanded (and were given) the mandates, which were to a large extent the result of the Sykes-Picot agreement.

    The mandates were effectively a new form of colony, but dressed up in the idea that they were to prepare the subject areas for self-government. In most cases this eventually happened, with the notable and deplorable exception of Palestine, for which see MidEastWeb for coexistence historical documents

    Salaam/Shalom
    ed


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  • 295. At 4:15pm on 19 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2008/09/19/wall-street-journal-editorial-board-skewers-mccain/#more-19356

    The way this is going, and the way McCain is lying openly to the nation, I expect George Bush to finally stand up on his own feet, and openly attack McCain, and endorsing Obama for President.

    At least that way Bush will show America, that he does care about America, not the republican party.

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  • 296. At 4:19pm on 19 Sep 2008, Gary_A_Hill wrote:

    FinMember (#214), I agree with you except for your blaming "all this" on Bush the second. The problem with financial institutions today are the consequence of a quarter century of Republican policies, implemented with some cooperation from the Democrats. The Fannie Mae problem actually goes back further, to 1968, when it was "privatized." That was during a Democratic administration and the Vietnam War, and the purpose was to get it off the budget.

    Since Reaganomics became the dominant political philosophy in the 1980s, the Republicans no longer worry about balanced budgets, as long as the deficts are for the "military-industrial complex."

    The question is, have Americans had enough of Reaganomics yet?

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  • 297. At 4:19pm on 19 Sep 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    For JohnAAA

    Look at the chart data and remember your differential calculus and the significance of the area under a curve....

    Salaam, etc.
    ed

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  • 298. At 4:25pm on 19 Sep 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    #286, David_de_Jong:

    There are many, many shareholder lawsuits.

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  • 299. At 4:31pm on 19 Sep 2008, Gary_A_Hill wrote:

    ArthurPutey (#247), calling an elected official "dumb" is not libel. It is merely an opinion.

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  • 300. At 4:31pm on 19 Sep 2008, stinachris wrote:

    just as a side note here, I've read many American blogs pertaining to politics and non of them comes close to the level of intellect as this one. Most people have nothing but inarticulate crap to say.

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  • 301. At 4:42pm on 19 Sep 2008, Gary_A_Hill wrote:

    David_de_Jong (#286), directors of corporations are not personally responsible for the consequences of their own bad judgment. If they were, nobody would be willing to be one. Directors can be held accountable for intentional wrongdoing, such as embezzlement.

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  • 302. At 4:46pm on 19 Sep 2008, FinMember wrote:

    Both American parties are guilty of distortions but mcain's seem more outright lies. Choosing a no experience politician (Palin) is another example of poor judgemet on behalf of someone who wants to be President, she is called barracuda but maybe parrotfish is more accurate. The point that sticks out to me is that Americans believe what they read in political ads when even journalists say liar. What about what has happened under a republican administration, failed financial responsibility and huge debt to fight a war for questionable reasons, but they did get rid of Sadam, good going.
    Republicans have repeatedly lied to further their agenda. Dems have their faults too maybe an indepentdant should be given a chance. Where are you Ross Perot?

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  • 303. At 4:47pm on 19 Sep 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    For those who like to post many URL's

    <a href="http://someurl">Some descriptive text</a>

    is the way to type in a hyper-link.

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  • 304. At 4:56pm on 19 Sep 2008, Gary_A_Hill wrote:

    kkbarrett (#293), Hagel has already announced his intention not to seek reelection, which is why he is free to speak his mind.

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  • 305. At 5:01pm on 19 Sep 2008, hms_shannon wrote:

    test

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  • 306. At 5:09pm on 19 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    JOHNAAA,

    why can't you defend McCain without having to insult Obama as a blogger posted?

    Shadow Governor

    More lies from liars.
    JohnAAA, you are a LIAR!

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  • 307. At 5:11pm on 19 Sep 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    I think Republican Nebraskans feel Hagel is being a bit disloyal to his party, even though many agree with his positions.

    Nebraska's Hagel Faces Political War at Home

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  • 308. At 5:15pm on 19 Sep 2008, bannedgunner wrote:

    duhbuh ,

    You are right! And just like all Republican you
    want every one too agree with you, otherwise you throw a tantrum.

    Look Man, Hollywood Elite has been built by lefties and it is their money, they can give it to whoever they want. Are there any Dems complaining about Christian right pumping money to Republicans?

    So its okay for Republicans supporters to
    finance their party, but Hollywood who makes no bones about it s being on the left should not?

    As far as Media goes, Yes BBC is more left and perhaps sides with Democrats, but so what? Murdoch and Fox news is more on Republican side. Stop whining just because everything is not to your liking.


    But then hypocrisy and Republicans go and an hand, "small town values" Been there! Back stabbing, gossip mongers, drinking, sex, and weeds . Survey after survey shows the small town sluts start sex at earlier age, and get pregnant more than their urban counter parts.

    So it was a surprised only to Palin that her teenage pregnancy was viewed as normal teenage girls just like any other small town girl. Not so! In Urban areas teenage pregnancy is viewed with irresponsibility by the parents. Yes it does happen, but it is not considered "okay" and not a "not a big deal"
    That is just another hypocritical trait of god fearing small town folks

    Can't blame MCCain for knowing this and still picking PAlin, it is nearly impossible to get any of God fearing small town family whose teenage daughter is not
    knocked up.

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  • 309. At 5:19pm on 19 Sep 2008, gunsandreligion wrote:

    MarkFromOxford, Sam,

    We've never been successful in limiting executive
    compensation. The way our financial system works
    is like letting thieves run an alarm company.

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  • 310. At 5:27pm on 19 Sep 2008, RealFrigid wrote:

    From the Iowa Tribune, July 17th, 2008;
    McCain praises Hagel in first trip to Nebraska

    I wonder how John McCain feels about Chuck Hagel today.

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  • 311. At 5:33pm on 19 Sep 2008, David Cunard wrote:

    #293. kkbarrett: "You do not get away with supporting a socialist presidential candidate while in the Republican Party."

    We are now descending into the ridiculous. Had Mr Obama Attleean proposals, then that might be true, but he doesn't. That he has a social conscience can only be for the betterment of the United States, but state ownership and management of essential industries is not on his agenda. Even his healthcare plan is not, like Britain's NHS, "socialised medicine" which so many Americans abhor. Neither Mr Obama nor the Democratic Party represent socialism as a political ideology. To suggest they do is, as one of our more frequent posters might write, is 'vile smear' and a misrepresentation of their proposals for a better America.

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  • 312. At 5:33pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    Ed

    Yes, betting has been moving against McCain after a strong move towards him - he had been lagging badl pulled back and had a brief few days ahead..

    The betting does not give any real feel for the individual states. Recent polls and today's betting -esoecially the TRENS inthe numbers, is what I look for.

    Here in the UK Labour is t about 27, the Tories at 52% Not much mention of it on the BBC though - this is a drantic gap historically - has been getting wider.

    It remains all to play for.

    ...................................

    Re. French and British colonialism in the middle East after WW1. I rather approve of the record of the British Empire, on balance, warts and all. (Now there's a surprise !) In quite a few areas of the globe its tenets of rule of law, binding contracts etc were better than the mess now. And I would cite Hong Kong and its Anglo-Chinese success as contibuting mightily to the dumping of Maoism in China.

    The territories in the Middle East had of course themelves been part of a differnt empire, they were not soveregn states.

    ...............

    Your method of doing links - is it only for the BBC website, or any site ? A refresher course would be welcome.

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  • 313. At 5:53pm on 19 Sep 2008, DougTexan wrote:

    Gleaned from an article writen by Derrick Jackson in the Boston Globe, Derrick gives hard numbers for the tax breaks and increases for American workers.

    McCain Percent Obama
    population
    -$21 up to 20 -$567
    -$118 up to 40 -$892
    -$325 up to 60 -$1115
    -$994 up to 98 -$1264
    -$49,000 up to 99.9 +$94,000
    -$291,000 to 100 +$543,000

    These numbers add up to adding to the annual deficits as follows:
    McCains adds $5.1 trillion deficit yearly.
    Obamas adds $3.6 trillion deficit yearly.

    All I notice is that both canidates bankrupt the country with calls for tax breaks, never mind the additional promises of both.
    McCains 3 trillion plus and Obamas 5 trillion plus in education, medical and welfare promises.

    Oh boy, the worlds nations saved the economy for a day by printing additional billions, then "Bush" saved the 'wall street bankers' with just an $85 billion give away to Investment firms, just two days after Fannie and Freddie got $85 billion. I think George like Ocho Cinco the football player!

    Palins experience or lack there of can do no worse.
    Obamas addition of the complete Clinton staff to his side, certainly looks like more of the same.
    Spain? Oh, its Latino.
    Biden quitting? Hillary to join Obama!!

    no peace in turmoil

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  • 314. At 5:54pm on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #269

    John,

    What makes you think I am not?

    Senior Sam

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  • 315. At 5:58pm on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    JohnAAA,

    Let me save you some time this afternoon. I'll do your next post for you so you can put some time into coming up with something good:

    Dear 'name of blogger'

    - Insult

    - Insult Obama, Biden or both

    - Claim BBC has left wing bias

    - Inaccurate claim

    - Link to right wing blog

    - Unsubstantiated claim mcCain is the answer

    - Obfuscation

    - Non sequitur

    - Tenuous attempt to cite family member as evidence of non bias

    - Irrelevant question

    End of post

    Time to go shoot something.

    Gunner Sam

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  • 316. At 5:58pm on 19 Sep 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Wall Street Journal (A murdoch "rag") Slams McCain.

    "While he was at it, Mr. McCain added the wholly unsupported assertion that "speculators pounded the shares of even good companies into the ground." It wasn't very long ago that he blamed speculators on the long side for sky-high oil prices. Then oil prices fell. Now Mr. McCain wants voters to believe speculators are responsible for driving mismanaged financial companies to ruin. The irony is that this critique puts Mr. McCain in the same camp as some of the Wall Street CEOs who have led their firms so poorly. They also want someone (else) to blame."
    And he goes on to threaten the wrong man/agency
    "
    "The chairman of the SEC serves at the appointment of the President and has betrayed the public's trust. If I were President today, I would fire him."

    Wow. "Betrayed the public's trust." Was Mr. Cox dishonest? No. He merely changed some minor rules, and didn't change others, on short-selling. String him up! Mr. McCain clearly wants to distance himself from the Bush Administration. But this assault on Mr. Cox is both false and deeply unfair. It's also un-Presidential."
    It seems the poor old fellow is a wee bit confused... or has "lost his bearings"
    "But while the president nominates and the Senate confirms the SEC chair, a commissioner of an independent regulatory commission cannot be removed by the president.

    From time to time, presidents have attempted to remove commissioners who have proven "uncooperative." However, the courts have generally upheld the independence of commissioners. In 1935, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt fired a member of the Federal Trade Commission, and the Supreme Court ruled the president acted unconstitutionally.
    Mutter mutter, fumble, fumble...
    ;-)
    ed


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  • 317. At 5:59pm on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #267

    CNN uses a poll of polls. Keep drinking the cool aid.

    Sam

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  • 318. At 6:00pm on 19 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #270

    Amen to that.

    Sad Sam

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  • 319. At 6:04pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    More Palin Derangement Syndrome. These people gotta be loopy.

    http://tinyurl.com/45rt4c

    This is a first - WaPo calls Obama deceptive ! And points out his hypocrisy. All on Fannie mae - this will stay in the hedlines, hopefully till the first debate.

    http://tinyurl.com/4vglct

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  • 320. At 6:05pm on 19 Sep 2008, SaintDominick wrote:

    Obama's speech in Coral Gables, Florida, a few minutes ago was interrupted by about a dozen black young protesters holding signs that read Blacks Against Obama, Obama Endorsed by the KKK, and other charges.
    The incident highlights a fact that is not being covered by the media, which is that the black community is not 100% behind Obama. I suspect the disillusionment of some members of the black community is not attributed to race, but the fact that Obama's policies focus on the welfare of all Americans rather than speficic policies designed to benefit ethnic minorities. I doubt this movement will have a significant effect on the outcome of the election, but it is worth noting that the alleged unconditional support that Obama enjoys from the black community is not as solid as some believe.

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  • 321. At 6:07pm on 19 Sep 2008, Parrisia wrote:

    On second thoughts: maybe this is one big marketing ploy i.e the simple avergae girl using a free Yahoo email address just like any other ordinary person.. What do you think?

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  • 322. At 6:18pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    308 u11

    The point about the BBC is that it is required to be neutral, balanced.

    But as you say - it leans left.

    You gotta accentuate the positive (about Dems)
    and eliminate the negative (about Dems)...

    We the licence payers are entitl;ed to getting "Mr In-Between" We most assuredly do not.

    And I foresee the BBC being pulled up very sharp. The licence fee principle has only a few years to run, some element of subscriptions could be brought in using normal user-authorisation technology because the BBC will by then be received by ome ot other form of set-top box. The BBC would have to earn its keep, not force its groupthink at us all the time.

    Increasingly large numbers of the UK publi are regarding the BBC as biased - which forfeits public trust. Many many people would be happy to see the licence fee halved, if not abolished. The more the BBC stays biased to the left, the greater the risks it is piling up for itself. At the very least, there will be a root-and-branch review of the BBC's legal status.

    Imagine if MSNBC - or Fox - was funded through a compulsory licence fee. That nonsense would be swept away in short order.

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  • 323. At 6:18pm on 19 Sep 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    JohnAAA,

    "I rather approve of the record of the British Empire, on balance, warts and all. "
    It's no coincidence that a majority of today's trouble spots are leftover unfinished British Empire business. I don't need to mention more than Palestine, Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, Kashmir, Zimbabwe....And French leftovers include Syria and Lebanon, and others. On balance, very little of which to be proud. The term "Perfidious Albion" has considerable justice. Just ask the Arabs and the Jews, both of whom were made solemn promises.

    The links tutorial is here

    Bookmark it or whatever your browser calls it ("favourites" in windoze). The extra hints at the top are also potentially helpful.

    Salaam/Shalom/Shanthi/Peace
    ed

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  • 324. At 6:29pm on 19 Sep 2008, robzaba wrote:

    What he is saying is v important because he acknowledges that a Pres. or V Pres. simply MUST be able to connect with all parts of the world, and it must be experienced gained by previous meetings; seeing Russia from your wndow and using this as 'experience' is frackly embarrassing, for all the US's - and all other countries' - politicians and diplomats of all Nations.

    He sees this clearly. The Rep's hardline supporters simply do not.

    V scary...

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  • 325. At 6:29pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    Sam

    Amusing - but I do not set out by insulting people.


    And if you don't like what I post - don't read it.

    re CNN - you should have said it was a poll of polls. There is clearly a big discrepancy between RCP and CNN's methods or definitions right now. Both are right, both are wrong.

    I use RCP figures because they are updating daily, readily accessible. The site is realclearpolitics.com, click the "Polls" tab at the top.

    Your suggestion that McCain had only 100 or so seats looking safe looks wrong on both CNN and RCP figures.. I notice you haven't responded to the arithmetic I offered that contradicted you on that point.

    Inaccuracy abounds on all sides.

    The most important link I posted today was to the WaPo, not to a left-wing rag. As the slant of this blog seems to chime with the liberal media - slavishly at times - what is wroing with the contrary view ?

    You seem to be going very ad hominem, by the way. I don't see you making a similar critique of people who post nothing but leftie stuff, awho rgue always for the left and against the right. No names, no packdrill - but you are showing double standards.

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  • 326. At 6:41pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    Ed

    The troubles you mention were mostly there before th British Empire - tribal wars, autocracy etc. I would ague that the Brits had a cleaner and more moral withdrawal from empire than most - certainly better than the French. And prior to WW! many of the areas were under draconian rule in the Ottoman empire.

    Afghanistan was never part of the Empire, by the way.

    I find as I travel around that there is quite a degree of fondness for the "old days".

    And you completely omit countries like the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. The Anglosphere is arguably the best thing this world has seen so far. I trust you are not one of the "America is always wrong, it is all our fault" brigade. Like Obama tends towards.

    I recommend the three-volume "Pax Britannica" by Jan Morris. A fascinating read by a cosmolpolitan author, broad sweeps of history and lots of local detail. Arguably the best travel writer in the world - her books on New York, Hong Kong, Venice are classics of the genre. Long may she survive, she is a national treasure.

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  • 327. At 6:44pm on 19 Sep 2008, David Cunard wrote:

    I have not seen this story elsewhere; it concerns not the "bridge to nowhere" but rather its immediate sibling, The Road to Nowhere. Something more to admire about Mrs Palin's fiscal conservatism and fight against earmarks!

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  • 328. At 6:45pm on 19 Sep 2008, seanspa wrote:

    Enjoying the ride today, Ed? That 'Pelosi' plan seems to have gone down well!

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  • 329. At 6:47pm on 19 Sep 2008, john-In-Dublin wrote:

    #315 by SamTyler1969 wrote:

    "JohnAAA,

    Let me save you some time this afternoon. I'll do your next post for you so you can put some time into coming up with something good:

    Dear 'name of blogger'...

    etc"


    And the award for best post of the day goes to....

    :-)

    (Only one problem Sam - I think you're trying to satirise the unsatirisable - if that's actually a word...)

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  • 330. At 6:53pm on 19 Sep 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    The best poll and prediction analysis site (in my not-very-humble opinion) is Fivethirtyeight.com, which seems to be very much into in-depth data analysis.

    The problem (for some) is that the main man is a self-confessed Democrat, but that doesn't seem to bias his output in any obvious way. The last fortnight has shown, as elsewhere, a trend towards McCain, but this has reversed (in line with others) in the last couple of days.

    Data junkies should have a look.

    Happy trails for now,
    ed

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  • 331. At 6:59pm on 19 Sep 2008, David Cunard wrote:

    #312. JohnAAA: "Your method of doing links - is it only for the BBC website, or any site?"

    In addition to Ed's British Telecom link about how to do this, Google (and we know you can do that!) the words 'making links' and a number of sites will provide alternate instructions. Even how to make bold and and italic text should you wish. And they are for any site - nothing special for the BBC.

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  • 332. At 7:04pm on 19 Sep 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    John,

    "Afghanistan was never part of the Empire, by the way."
    Not for want of trying! There are British footprints all over it.

    The tribal troubles to which you refer were exacerbated by the arbitrary lines drawn by the colonialists. Wherever you see a straight line as a frontier, you can expect trouble. We will have to differ on the "benefits" of having been colonised.

    British policy of playing one side off against another, particularly in Palestine, has much to answer for - in blood and treasure - and the legacy continues today.
    "During the years of the Palestine Mandate, from 1922 to 1947, large-scale Jewish immigration from abroad, mainly from Eastern Europe took place, the numbers swelling in the 1930s with the notorious Nazi persecution of Jewish populations. Palestinian demands for independence and resistance to Jewish immigration led to a rebellion in 1937, followed by continuing terrorism and violence from both sides during and immediately after World War II. Great Britain tried to implement various formulas to bring independence to a land ravaged by violence. In 1947, Great Britain turned the problem over to the United Nations."
    In Detail

    Salaam, etc.
    ed

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  • 333. At 7:07pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    327 David_Cunard

    Don't believe all you read in the press.

    The road actually leads to a ferry point. But trust the LA Times to fail to mention that. It is tucked away on P23, apparently. The idea of a road and a ferry service at moderate cost makes some sense, methinks.

    The truth about that road

    (I hope this link works)

    The LA Times should always be taken with a pinch of Patterico. The old media try their tricks all the time - but they can often be quickly contradicted. It's all out there, ask Dan Rather.


    JohninDublin

    There you go again with the cliquey mutual admiration society.

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  • 334. At 7:11pm on 19 Sep 2008, Simon21 wrote:

    "Hagel questions Palin's experience
    Justin Webb 18 Sep 08, 03:46 PM GMT This is important - removed from all the internet-based nonsense, this kind of thing will have an effect on independents. "

    This is a straightforward judgement. After all she is apprently incapable of knowing what country she is in.

    When combined with McCain's antics not apparently knowing who the president of Spain was or where the country is - then wwe have a ral pinky and perky performance.

    It is good however that so many Americans are not prepared to have these two cast them as idiots - and then try to argue that being an idiot is a good thing.

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  • 335. At 7:15pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    Ed

    Try reading Jan Morris, it wasn't all bad. She describes what was there before.

    I agree that arbitrary lines on the map cause problems all over the place. But many of the "new" nations demanded freedom on the boundaries then existing - or on new boundaries they insted on, like the India / Pakistan split. And have often botched it up entirely sice then. Try ascribing som of the blame to th indoigenous peoples, theor propensity in many cases for endless violence and / or autocracy and corruption.

    If I had a free choice of where to live in the world, I would choose places in the Anglosphere every time. New Zealand for example

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  • 336. At 7:15pm on 19 Sep 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    David,

    "And they are for any site - nothing special for the BBC."
    Different sites accept different subsets of HTML "entities".

    Another BBC blogger has provided this effort to determine bbc compatibility.

    Also, for Blogspot blogs, the blockquote seems to fail posts. My tutorial seems to cover most BBC idiosyncrasies.

    Enjoy.
    ed

    P.S. SeansPa, A bit early to tell, I reckon, and we've only got partway back, even at almost 9% on the FTSE....time will tell.






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  • 337. At 7:18pm on 19 Sep 2008, mdalerwill wrote:

    I've been reading these boards for some time, but this will be my first post. Allow me to introduce myself: I'm the mythical beast, the undecided American voter (well, not all by myself, but you get the idea). Why do I say mythical? Because there just don't seem to be many of us sticking our heads up into the crossfire between the rabidly pro-Obama and the rabidly pro-McCain.

    I have been reading all manner of political blogs in hopes of hearing exactly why people are voting for their candidates. This one is the most civil, despite some behavior that does embarrass me as an American.

    To my fellow Americans, please keep the posts civil (and intelligent!), not just because you are representing an image of us to the outside world, but also because some of us actually want to know your thoughts and thought-processes as an aid in making our own decision. Lord knows what passes for media in our country is little help with the slanted coverage. One might think we could rely on what our actual candidates are saying to make such a decision, but not when it all seems to be promises light on details.

    To those from other countries, I am interested in hearing what you think too. I'm not squeemish about people criticising my country.

    And to answer the question posed by some, yes, it does get my attention when someone like Hagel (on his way out of the party machine) states his thoughts on the subject.

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  • 338. At 7:18pm on 19 Sep 2008, turningblueandgrey wrote:

    Re 291, realfrigid

    You are correct that New York may well be the one state that is best to cherry-pick from all 50 states for a comparison to make the USA tax burden seem closest to that of Sweden.

    A national comparison, or a comparison with a more 'average' American state may have been more to the point.

    I've lived and worked in 5 states, in all 4 of the 'lower 48' time zones, from the Atlantic to Midwest to Southwest, and never paid as much as NY taxes...

    But you are right to point out that

    1) Swedish taxes are spent in Sweden not Iraq.

    I imagine that our bridge repair and highway construction funding shortfall - not too mention a big chunk of unemployment - would be solved if a dime or maybe a quarter had to be spent at home for every dollar patriotically approved for the Iraq war; and

    2) the richest 1-5% of Swedes do not get a Smorgasbord of tax breaks




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  • 339. At 7:20pm on 19 Sep 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    John,

    "new boundaries they insted on, like the India / Pakistan split. "
    That was drawn by a British Civil Servant, who had never stood on a single foot of it.

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  • 340. At 7:22pm on 19 Sep 2008, seanspa wrote:

    Ed, I know very well that a rise precedes a fall. I was just missing your daily post about the subject.

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  • 341. At 7:23pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    There was an opportunity for a bipartisan show of disapproval against Ahmedinejad on his visit to New York.

    But the Dems have pulled the plug on that, I see, with Biden and Hillary withdrawing - and Dem pushing Palin away now.

    Politics before country ?

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  • 342. At 7:24pm on 19 Sep 2008, seanspa wrote:

    Ed, I've just noticed the capitalisation you used in my username. Good guess - Sean is my son's name.

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  • 343. At 7:28pm on 19 Sep 2008, Simon21 wrote:

    "325. At 6:29pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:
    "Sam

    Amusing - but I do not set out by insulting people. "

    Not my experience. You called Obama someone who "consorts with terrorists".

    A pretty foul insult



    re CNN - you should have said it was a poll of polls. There is clearly a big discrepancy between RCP and CNN's methods or definitions right now. Both are right, both are wrong.

    I use RCP figures because they are updating daily, readily accessible. The site is realclearpolitics.com, click the "Polls" tab at the top.

    Your suggestion that McCain had only 100 or so seats looking safe looks wrong on both CNN and RCP figures.. I notice you haven't responded to the arithmetic I offered that contradicted you on that point.

    Inaccuracy abounds on all sides."

    Which is why your increasingly desperate attempts to state daily polls prove something is farcical.

    One has to use political/social judgement etc in these matters and of course history.

    And it is a fact that incumbent parties etc have always struggled in a recession.

    "The most important link I posted today was to the WaPo, not to a left-wing rag. As the slant of this blog seems to chime with the liberal media - slavishly at times - what is wroing with the contrary view ?"

    Because extremist right wing sites are tainted with rascism

    "You seem to be going very ad hominem, by the way. I don't see you making a similar critique of people who post nothing but leftie stuff, awho rgue always for the left and against the right. No names, no packdrill - but you are showing double standards."

    Since you cannot define leftie, all the term means is someone who contests your extremist views.

    Which is most of the world.



    326. At 6:41pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:
    Ed

    "The troubles you mention were mostly there before th British Empire - tribal wars, autocracy etc. I would ague that the Brits had a cleaner and more moral withdrawal from empire than most - certainly better than the French. And prior to WW! many of the areas were under draconian rule in the Ottoman empire."

    Not entirely correct. India Rhodesia, ireland SA were epic disasters with which we are still living.

    "Afghanistan was never part of the Empire, by the way."

    SO the retreat from Kabul never happened? Fascinating I could have sworn it did. So could those who died at Gandamak

    In fact Britain frequently ruled Afghansitan and parts thereof

    "I find as I travel around that there is quite a degree of fondness for the "old days"."

    But no one ever asks for the empire to be restored.

    "And you completely omit countries like the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. The Anglosphere is arguably the best thing this world has seen so far. "

    That depends on what you mean. These countries annihlated their native populations. Ask a Koori or Cree what they think of the Empire and they may give you a dusty answer.

    "I trust you are not one of the "America is always wrong, it is all our fault" brigade. Like Obama tends towards."

    Better then the US is always right even when it isn't. The US is a country nothing more, nothing less.

    "I recommend the three-volume "Pax Britannica" by Jan Morris. A fascinating read by a cosmolpolitan author, broad sweeps of history and lots of local detail. Arguably the best travel writer in the world - her books on New York, Hong Kong, Venice are classics of the genre. Long may she survive, she is a national treasure."

    But not a historian. There are plenty of good histories on the Empire about - Thomas Pakenham is good on Africa. Bury my Heart at Wounded knee, by Dee Brown is not brilliant, but it has since been followed by a number of excellent studies.

    One always has to guard against nostalgia, as David Cannandine said, "too much nostalgia is like another activity, it makes you blind".

    As Orwell said the British Empire was designed to exploit and was built on bayonets.

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  • 344. At 7:28pm on 19 Sep 2008, turningblueandgrey wrote:

    Re 337

    welcome and thanks for thoughtful first post

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  • 345. At 7:31pm on 19 Sep 2008, FinMember wrote:

    Isn't it funny,in China you can't even chose which idiot rules, but in the US you get a choice of which idiot makes stupid descisions for the next 4 years. Dem or Gop the only real difference is that Gop have been in power for the last 8 terrible years. 9/11; global financial difficulties; massive debt; Katrina-failure by the richest country in the world to help. Now the American public is offered Palin as vp. No experience in foreign affairs, no real political experience, an evangelical whose teen-ager gets pregnant out of wedlock, she would be an embassasment to anybody but a desperate mcant-

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  • 346. At 7:37pm on 19 Sep 2008, Simon21 wrote:

    "335. At 7:15pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:
    Ed

    Try reading Jan Morris, it wasn't all bad. She describes what was there before."

    But she is not a historian.

    "I agree that arbitrary lines on the map cause problems all over the place. But many of the "new" nations demanded freedom on the boundaries then existing - or on new boundaries they insted on, like the India / Pakistan split. "

    Well the split was a british idea, indulging Jinnah and they were warned about the consequences.

    After all the British had followed this policy in Northern Ireland

    "And have often botched it up entirely sice then. Try ascribing som of the blame to th indoigenous peoples, theor propensity in many cases for endless violence and / or autocracy and corruption."

    Oh this is because they are born to it are they? In the genes?

    Never heard of corruption in the "Anglosphere",like er now.

    "If I had a free choice of where to live in the world, I would choose places in the Anglosphere every time. New Zealand for example "

    And would this be near a Maori settlement?

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  • 347. At 7:40pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    Ed

    The Indian Civil Service did have maps - and so did the civil servants in London. The bounbdary lines essentially followed the lines of the pre-existing states withi India

    The ills of the subcontinent are primarily the fault oif its own denizens these days. Pakistan looks like a basket case - is that Britain's fault ? India is more successful, democratic - a British legacy ?

    Again - try reading what things were like before th Brits arrived. Life was nasty, brutish and short.

    Now every Indan speaks with the lilt of the Welsh teachers and missionaries who followed along with the soldiers and traders. That can't be bad.

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  • 348. At 7:40pm on 19 Sep 2008, Simon21 wrote:

    "341. At 7:23pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:
    There was an opportunity for a bipartisan show of disapproval against Ahmedinejad on his visit to New York."

    Indeed there was, a ridiculous performance but there you are.

    "But the Dems have pulled the plug on that, I see, with Biden and Hillary withdrawing - and Dem pushing Palin away now."

    Inviting Palin was a gross insult to all concerned. Fortunately Mrs Clinton scuppered that, rather neatly.

    Pity though the Iranians would have been dying to hear her speak, it would have done their cause no end of good.

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  • 349. At 7:43pm on 19 Sep 2008, Xie_Ming wrote:

    Some of our more ignorant and assertive posters know very little about the British invasion and occupation of Iraq.

    It was for oil and advanced strategic bases.
    They used 350,000 troops and said that they needed 500,000 (sound familiar?)

    They also set up an Oil Company.

    They had the same problems that the American-led occupiers occur to do and left for the same reasons.

    Here is some good reading, together with very literate reports from the woman was, effectively, British Vice-Pro-Consul for Mesopotamia.
    Gertrude Bell: Queen of the Desert, Shaper of Nations
    by Georgina Howell
    Farrar, Straus and Giroux,481 pp., $27.50

    Desert Queen: The Extraordinary Life of Gertrude Bell, Adventurer, Adviser to Kings, Ally of Lawrence of Arabia
    by Janet Wallach
    Anchor, 419 pp., $15.95 (paper)

    Gertrude Bell: The Lady of Iraq
    by H.V.F. Winstone
    Stacey International, 504 pp., $29.95

    Review of the Civil Administration in Mesopotamia
    by Gertrude Bell
    London: HMSO, 147 pp. (1920)

    The Gertrude Bell Project
    University of Newcastle upon Tyne www.gerty.ncl.ac.uk

    ________________-----

    Under Bush Sr, helping Israel was the third objective in priority. Under Bush junior, it became the second most important objective. The NeoCons who did the Pentagon planning made sure that Israel's goals were obtained.

    We can go into that aspect after the curious have learned about Gertrude Bell and her era.

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  • 350. At 7:44pm on 19 Sep 2008, Simon21 wrote:

    "We've got to remember what the desire is in this nation at this time," she said. "It is for no more politics as usual, and somebody's big, fat résumé, maybe, that shows decades and decades in that Washington establishment where, yes, they've had opportunities to meet heads of state."

    "I'm ready," Palin said. "I have the confidence in that readiness and knowing that you can't blink.""

    Yes but confidence is not the same as ability is it?

    And the ever so slight ability to be able to tell what country you are in.

    And doesn't everyone blink?

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  • 351. At 7:49pm on 19 Sep 2008, john-In-Dublin wrote:

    # 311 David_Cunard wrote:

    "To suggest they do is, as one of our more frequent posters might write, is 'vile smear' and a misrepresentation of their proposals for a better America."

    No. Sorry. You're being too cryptic. NO idea who you could be referring to there.

    JJJohn-IIIn-DDDublin

    ;-)

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  • 352. At 7:52pm on 19 Sep 2008, Kristopher wrote:

    Ah ... so Hagel bailed before he could be removed for being a closet Democrat.

    Good.

    You either support your party, or you resign from it and accept the consequences.

    Disloyalty should never be ignored.

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  • 353. At 7:53pm on 19 Sep 2008, Simon21 wrote:

    Ed

    The Indian Civil Service did have maps - and so did the civil servants in London. The bounbdary lines essentially followed the lines of the pre-existing states withi India"

    A meaningless comment since those states did not have solid borders until the British drew them up

    "The ills of the subcontinent are primarily the fault oif its own denizens these days. Pakistan looks like a basket case - is that Britain's fault ? India is more successful, democratic - a British legacy ?"

    Yes because Britain wanted partition. Many at the time said it was a bad idea.

    Not to mention the indulging the concept of the religious state, whihc the UK had done in Ireland, and was to do in Palestine was and is. a disaster.

    "Again - try reading what things were like before th Brits arrived. Life was nasty, brutish and short."

    And remained so for many years after the British arrived.

    "Now every Indan speaks with the lilt of the Welsh teachers and missionaries who followed along with the soldiers and traders. That can't be bad."

    Every Indian? Many remember Armritsar and the horrible slaughters of the conquest. Not something to be proud of.

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  • 354. At 7:57pm on 19 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    McCain lying once again.
    This time the White House and Republicans can't take to defend a liar.


    McCain Lying

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  • 355. At 7:57pm on 19 Sep 2008, invisibleserendipity wrote:

    #345

    I am not sure that I would put the word funny anywhere near to the Party you are referring to. Funny - the CCP? Absolutely not.

    Or, were you trying to make some point that lost effectiveness with your opener?

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  • 356. At 7:59pm on 19 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    McCain knows it all!

    BUT OF COURSE!

    hmmm

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  • 357. At 8:01pm on 19 Sep 2008, Xie_Ming wrote:

    We all realize that Palin is not chosen for her
    abilities but for the identification with fundies.

    Has McCain expressed any ideas on issues?

    _______________

    Of course we all realize the situation with Palin, but the moral and ethical corruption of the American propagandists is so ingrained that they will not admit it.

    This is the corruption that has pervaded the US regime and much of their society.

    The NeoCons are amoral and guided by their culture of legalism. They use this to manipulate the unfortunate and unsophisticated fundies.

    (Remember Carl Rove walking the halls of the White House and whistling "Onward Christian Soldiers"during the last election?)

    The civilized World should be discussing, now, how to being the UN, the Organization of American States and other international bodies away from the corruption of the USA and into more favorable environments.

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  • 358. At 8:03pm on 19 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    McCain loosing his mind!
    Republicans against McCain.
    The big boys had enough.

    McCain's Scapegoat

    Debating with McCain's supporters from now on, after days and days of obvious lies and empty accusation by the old man, would be an insult to the intellect of any living creature, including humans.

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  • 359. At 8:04pm on 19 Sep 2008, Tramp wrote:

    This is what the person who "knows more about energy than probably anyone else in the United States of America" said today:

    "Of course, it's a fungible commodity and they don't flag, you know, the molecules, where it's going and where it's not. But in the sense of the Congress today, they know that there are very, very hungry domestic markets that need that oil first. So, I believe that what Congress is going to do, also, is not to allow the export bans to such a degree that it's Americans who get stuck holding the bag without the energy source that is produced here, pumped here. It's got to flow into our domestic markets first."

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  • 360. At 8:08pm on 19 Sep 2008, smoffatt-American wrote:

    Excerpts from Hagel's quotes from the article:

    "I think it's a stretch to, in any way, to say that she's got the experience to be president of the United States," Hagel said.

    "Experience is not the only qualification for elected officials — judgment and character are indispensable.

    "Washington experience isn't the only kind of experience, Hagel said, and he noted that many White House occupants have been governors with no time inside the Beltway.

    "But I do think in a world that is so complicated, so interconnected and so combustible, you really got to have some people in charge that have some sense of the bigger scope of the world," Hagel said."

    ...

    So I guess that in Sen. Hagel's opinion, experience isn't necessary, as long as you have judgement, character and "some sense of the bigger scope of the world."

    Nothing wrong with that sentiment.
    ...

    Fact #1:
    If you have a strong throwing arm, you can stand in Omaha and throw a rock across the Missouri River, from Nebraska (predicted to vote for McCain) into Iowa (a state firmly in the Obama camp).

    Fact #2:
    The Omaha World-Herald circulates in 7 states, including Colorado - a battleground state. The combined population of the single largest metropolitan areas in each state (NE, IA, SD, WY, CO, KS and MO) is over 5 million. The paper claims a circulation of 200,000, with 300,000 registered users of it's website.

    Question #1:
    Do you think that the paper might benefit from posting headline and an article about a Republican from Nebraska disparaging the GOP's candidate for Vice President?

    Question #2:
    Do you think that the writer, the editor and the paper might each benefit from an article that attracts national (and in the case of bbc.com, international) attention?

    ...

    In my humble opinion, the comments in the interview are non-issues.

    I'll leave it up to you to decide exactly how much of this article is the paper/editor trying to increase the paper's circulation.

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  • 361. At 8:08pm on 19 Sep 2008, David Cunard wrote:

    #333. JohnAAA: "The road actually leads to a ferry point." Actually, no. The statement was that it *could* lead to a ferry, not that it does or will. At the present, the road does not lead to anywhere and, as far as I can determine, there are no immediate plans for a ferry or other terminal when it's completed. There *could* be a series of bridges - but nothing is on the drawing board. Incidentally, if you go to the second page (2) on the LA Times link, you will see for yourself the word "could" - it is in the antipenultimate paragraph. As you say, don't believe everything you read :)

    And yes - your link worked!

    #336. Ed Iglehart "Different sites accept different subsets of HTML "entities"." With respect, that was not JohnAAA's question. It was about the method of linking - the BBC does not have a method which _only_ it can utilise. Http mark-up is for all sites - not just for one. There may be some anomalies with individual sites or blogs, just as there are with the presentation of and on different browsers, but in general use it works in the same way.

    The additional link is most informative though, but most likely will be of use to only those who wish to use hypertext - many sites only permit plain text to be used. Nevertheless, I shall study and learn!

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  • 362. At 8:12pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    Simon21

    The point was that I did not seek to insult people here. You do, frequently.

    And now in your post you accuse articles or websites that disagree with your views as being tinged with racism. A kneejerk and false charge. HotAir for example is run by a Filipino, it simply gives pointers to a variety of sources. Likewise the Townhall site.I believe - a signposting site to lots of press and web articles. Same with the RealClearPolitics site. And is the WSJ racist ? - you seem to be saying that.

    Your needle is really stuck in that groove, isn't it ? You have repeatedly accused me of being racist. Now you accuse entities like the WSJ of being tinged with racism. Let's have chapter and verse, or drop it..

    ....................

    re. polls, I was responding to poll figyres that Sam had posted.

    ...............

    I have never said that Britain or the US are always right, or their histories unblemished. But you seem to be very much of the glass-is-empty party,

    .......

    Britain did not frequently rule Afghanistan. Try reading some history - that country was outside the Raj.

    ..............

    You have never read Jan Morris's Pax Britannica. It is a work of history. All the volumes get 5 stars at Amazon, many years on - check them out, you could learn something. Quite a few historians have commended the sweep and the detail of her work. And yes - she does use extensive footnotes with references to original sources. I do not know of any other work of such breadth and readability. You are condemning without any knowledge one of the finest writers Britain has produced since WW2.

    George Orwell is apposite. He worked at the BBC. That is where the "Stuff Unwelcome News r facts Down The Memory Hole" idea comes from.

    And his dissection of socialism was exquisite.

    .......................

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  • 363. At 8:16pm on 19 Sep 2008, seanspa wrote:

    Goleoo, did you actually read the story you linked to in #354? It does not say McCain lied about anything, it says that a mcCain advisor issued a statement based upon a report in the NYT. It turns out that the NYT report was wrong.

    So the story is that someone other than McCain rushed to believe a story without checking the facts. Wow, that wouldn't happen here, would it?

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  • 364. At 8:25pm on 19 Sep 2008, Old-Man-Mike wrote:

    A small comment from SPAIN

    There is some confusion here. Zapatero is President of the Government, King Jaun Carlos is Head of State. President is used here in the same way as President of a Corporation is used in the U.S.A. Each of our Autominous Regions has a President. Here it is (in English) is The Prsident of the Government of Catalynia.

    We do not take it badly when someone says Spain is not there friend, we make our own judjments. What others think of us is there business. The comment by John McCain just about got into El Pais today.

    Modern Spain looks more and more South towards North Africa, our Mexico and East towards Eastern Europe as far as Russia. Please remember Russia, as the Soviet Union was the only State the came to the aid of the Republican Government in the Spainish Civil War of 1936 to 1939, supplying fighter aircraft and pilots.

    Spanish people are no against any people including Americans but were very, very angry with the Popular Party government that tried to commit is to the war in Iraq without a mandate from the United Nations and in breach of International Law.

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  • 365. At 8:26pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    Which of the 57 states of the Union is The One in today ?


    .................

    Simon21

    re the partition of India and Pakistan, it was Jinnah who demanded it. Britain eventually had to accept what he was demanding. Again - you blame evrything on Britain. Which is blinkered, I suggest. Self-faaggelation is not a healthy habit, one's nation is not always in the wrong.

    David_Cunard

    The point is that the LA Times buried any mention of a ferry point on page 23. Which was deliberately misleading. The intention of the front-page LA article was to suggest that Palin was building a road to nowhere whatsoever. Untrue. No wonder the LA Times is losing circulation. I find it a joke when I see it. Perhaps I am spoilt by the UK press which cannot use any local monopoly position to skew the news.

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  • 366. At 8:28pm on 19 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    sean,
    I am sure the mccain advisor did so on his own account...who asks the old man for permission? Who cares ?

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  • 367. At 8:35pm on 19 Sep 2008, David Cunard wrote:

    #343 Simon21 re JohnAAA's "Long may (Jan Morris) survive, she is a national treasure."

    "But not a historian." Most biographers in Britain would say that she is an historian in addition to being a travel writer and former news reporter. There are of course many books on the British Empire, not least "The Rise and Fall of the British Empire" by Lawrence James.

    I'm not so sure that if her life story were to have taken place in America that she would be regarded as an 'American National Treasure' - Britain is far more sophisticated in such matters. The rabid right and Evangelical movement would not approve of her earlier life or more recent Civil Union.

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  • 368. At 8:38pm on 19 Sep 2008, AndreainNY wrote:

    223. FinMember:

    "I hope moderators keep comments from Americans to a minimum, this a European forum."

    Uh, oh. It's time for a mini-lecture for you on the term, "European."




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  • 369. At 8:39pm on 19 Sep 2008, brit_fan1948 wrote:

    I believe that most Americans pay little attention to a candidate's credentials. In my experience, what most of us do pay attention to, unfortunately, is personality. Americans in general are distrustful of politicians, and feel that no matter who is elected, the little guy will get the short end. So we vote for the candidate who seems likely to do the least damage to us personally, and not the candidate who has the best plan for helping the country or the world. I know that's cynical.

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  • 370. At 8:41pm on 19 Sep 2008, AndreainNY wrote:

    273. FinMember:

    "To poster 233

    Bush was asleep at the switch and had been warned of possible terrorist attacks, which he ignored."

    Bush was in office all of 8 months and hadn't even completed naming his Cabinet members by 9/11.

    There was no specific threat. In fact, they believed it was a threat to Europe.



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  • 371. At 8:42pm on 19 Sep 2008, panmaestre wrote:

    Would you rather have your best bud that you can drink a beer and fool aroundwith, at the helm of the first country of the world during a dark global economic crisis or a near nuclear incident; or someone who's smart, intelligent, thoughtful, qualified, of sound judgement. You can see what the country experienced in the last eight years and as a result where the whole world is due to the lack of qualities specified in the latter section above. Our choice affects the whole world and our future....its not something flippant as to say that he reminds me of myself of she's like me coz she has 5 kids.... there's a reason why I'm not the leader of the free world; otherwise any joe of the street should be able to stand for election.

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  • 372. At 8:45pm on 19 Sep 2008, seanspa wrote:

    Goleooo, who cares about the truth? I know you don't, but I actually read most of the links provided, and then I double check the stories to try and eliminate any obvious bias. I prefer to base my judgements on facts rather than prejudices, it's just my sub-intellectual way. .

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  • 373. At 8:50pm on 19 Sep 2008, premiumcheese wrote:

    There've been quite a few posts on here regarding the way some people appear to be anti US and I thought I'd add my thoughts.

    There are a lot of times when I get angry about aspects of US foreign policy, particularly to do with America's dealing with Britain. Things like not sending IRA terrorists back to the UK then asking us to send out troops to Iraq and Afghanisation. Using British military bases (including two very near me) for the Missile Defence Shield. That ridiculously one-sided extradition treaty and so on.

    But then I think of the times I've been to the US and the great experiences I've had: Washington DC, Boston, San Francisco and yes, I have to admit, Vegas.

    And I think of people like my friend Beth, born in Wyoming but living in California who in a moment of madness married a Brit. Or my mate Jason from Arizona who has an encyclopaedic knowledge of British rock bands.

    Brilliant people who I wouldn't want to be without.

    So I reckon that a lot of the time, even though the discussion can get a bit rowdy, there are plenty of us who do actually like America quite a lot. I mean, I shout about my own government, but I still like Britain.

    Oh and for the person who ranted about the Empire: you should read what Bill Bryson has to say about it in Notes from a Small Island. We did dismantle it largely peacefully (and a good thing too). If everyone hated us, there wouldn't be 53 countries in the Commonwealth.

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  • 374. At 8:50pm on 19 Sep 2008, SaintDominick wrote:

    Ref 364

    I understand the system of Autonomous Regions that is in place in Spain, the democratic freedoms that exist in that country, their robust economy and, above all, I respect their right to decide who to support and trade with, but I think they are making a serious mistake if they think Russia is a partner they can trust. You mentioned the help the Spanish people got from the old Soviet Union when they were being massacred by fascist forces, but you forgot to mention the gold - the entire treasury of Spain - that was deposited in the Soviet Union for safekeeping towards the end of the civil war and has never been returned. Any chance of getting it back?
    Insofar as McCain's remarks, don't forget they were made to a Cuban-American audience in Florida that considers anyone who helps or invests in Cuba a monster worthy of extermination. It is also important to bear in mind that King Juan Carlos spat with Chavez notwithstanding, many Americans consider Spain's decision to leave Iraq an unfriendly act. Their contributions in Afghanistan and the losses they have incurred there fighting alongside US and fellow NATO forces are not going to change public opinion in the USA. The fact that they elected a socialist President does not help matters, and it becomes irrelevant in a country that only recognizes one Head of State, rather than regional heads of state.
    BTW, my ancestry is 100% from Spain (Galician, Basque, Canary Islands) and I am married to a Spaniard.

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  • 375. At 8:56pm on 19 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    Is McCain lying?

    Find Oot

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  • 376. At 8:59pm on 19 Sep 2008, David Cunard wrote:

    #365. JohnAAA "Which of the 57 states of the Union is The One in today ?"

    I hope that was an attempt at sarcasm since 7 and 0 are not close on the keyboard.

    "The point is that the LA Times buried any mention of a ferry point on page 23." Apparently you have not seen a recent edition of the paper. If page 23 is "buried away", then perhaps you can explain why the Leader/Editorial and OpEd columns are at pages 26 and 27. As it is, the so-called "buried" continuation from page 1 takes up almost the entire space of page 23, which I have in front of me as I type. There are two other items, one an advertisement for Target, a popular chain department store, and the other an article headed "Todd Palin refuses to testify in probe of his wife." It is not "buried away".

    More to the point is that there are no plans to either provide a ferry, construct a terminal building or provide new smaller bridges - these are things which state officials say "could" be done - not *will* be done. The project is unabashedly the road to nowhere.

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  • 377. At 8:59pm on 19 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    Is McCain lying again?

    Find out again

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  • 378. At 9:01pm on 19 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    Is McCain lying AGAIN?

    Check the facts

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  • 379. At 9:01pm on 19 Sep 2008, AndreainNY wrote:

    288. JohnAAA:


    "Palin Derangement Syndrome is rampant in New York - the cultural battle rages on. Heads are popping. It is amazing the hatred nthat Palin has engenderd - pure hatred. This is a real cultural war."


    Palin's achievement seems to represent their failure, somehow.

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  • 380. At 9:03pm on 19 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    Is McCain the maverick or a reformed maverick (liar)?

    Check Facts

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  • 381. At 9:05pm on 19 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    Is Palin the vp to nowhere, just like the bridge to nowhere?

    I said to congress thanks but no thanks, and yes but yet thanks i will keep the money

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  • 382. At 9:07pm on 19 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    sean,
    i have noticed.
    your opinions on "truth" oscillate more often than McCain's.

    But thanks for understanding that I care not about your truth. Guess why?

    It's a lie!

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  • 383. At 9:10pm on 19 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 384. At 9:22pm on 19 Sep 2008, john-In-Dublin wrote:

    An article on Palin

    "Actually, Dan Quayle is looking pretty good right now."

    "The swift disintegration of Palin's anti-pork credentials has been especially amusing."


    http://tinyurl.com/4fn6ej

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  • 385. At 9:28pm on 19 Sep 2008, Mark wrote:

    346 Simon

    I'm sorry; I have no wish to defend anything JohnAAA says as I find all his views somewhere to the right of Genghis Khan, but the following is unacceptable and racist; the moderators should have known better:

    John wrote:

    "If I had a free choice of where to live in the world, I would choose places in the Anglosphere every time. New Zealand for example "

    and you replied:

    "And would this be near a Maori settlement?"

    Now, I have a free choice to live in New Zealand: I'm from there; my parents and sisters still live in Wellington; my grandfather was one of only two European officers in the Maori Battalion during WW2: so I know a little more about New Zealand than I suspect you do. There may be suburbs like Porirua that are Maori predominant, but New Zealand is a fully multicultural society in a way that should make the US feel ashamed (and I know what I'm talking about). I'd be quite happy for a child of mine to marry a Maori; the greatest living NZ artist is a Maori (Ralph Hotere ... google him), and there are many Maori who have had very significant careers. Yes, unfortunately, Maori and other polynesian groups also feature at the problem end of the social statistics, but don't tar many good people with a single brush, or with the ignorant belief that they live in settlements.

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  • 386. At 9:32pm on 19 Sep 2008, NoRashDecisions wrote:

    David Cunard #25: I've seen this type of responce from you toward any American posters, be they rude or respectful, who ask and/or demand unkindly that foreigners not tell them who to vote for. You automatically asume that an American asking a Britain not to tell them how to vote and asking how the Britain how they would like it if the tables were turned means that the American doesn't know how the British system of government works and proceed to explain it to them. Well let me just asure you that the two most certainly do not go hand in hand!! An American asking a Britain (if they were to percieve that the latter were being a bit intrusive when expressing their opinion on the American election) not to tell them how to vote in said election means just that! It doesn't mean that the American doesn't understand how the British system works! And as regards them asking the British public how they would feel if Americans told them how to vote, that means within the confinds (for party not person), of the UK electoral system I.E. Labour/Tory/Liberal Democrat, as aposed to Berack Obama/John McCain/Ralf Nader!! I think everyone in our respective countries has a pretty good idea of how each other's electoral systems works (or at least everyone reading this blog.) Though I do agree with you that if we had a parlamentary system in the US, people wouldn't vote nearly as heavally on personality versis policies!! But alas, we are stuck with the one we have.


    Also please read my post at #403 on the 'September 14th entry...its very important regarding Russel Brand.


    And I must say, I'm very taken back by your comments regarding Bachilors digrees in the US...what makes you think it is so very much easier to get one in the US as aposed the UK?


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  • 387. At 9:49pm on 19 Sep 2008, mdalerwill wrote:

    I would like to say a few things about the candidates but I've got to do something first.

    I'm going to say a bad word, so avert your eyes if you must... socialist. (Waiting for the sky to fall.) Socialist. SOCIALIST.

    Wow. I didn't combust or something, although I cannot yet be certain I'm not going to hell. After all, I have learned in all the board reading that I'm doing that short of communism, the worst thing that can befall a country is socialism.

    And this is important, because many Americans are afraid that Obama is going to turn us all into socialists and throw open the doors of social welfare, and the deluge of deadbeats waiting to live off the state will drown us all. And I, for one, am thoroughly... unconcerned. Hmmm.

    Don't get me wrong, before someone tells me to go live somewhere else, I love many things about being an American. Being afraid and judgmental about anything other than democracy is not one of them. Delivering democracy to unprepared nations at the end of a gun is also not one of them.

    That being said, you might think I'm primed as an Obama voter, but I don't like his healthcare plan and have other issues to look at as well. I just needed to pop off about this socialism phobia.

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  • 388. At 9:51pm on 19 Sep 2008, seanspa wrote:

    test - who let Goleooo be one of the mods!

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  • 389. At 9:54pm on 19 Sep 2008, seanspa wrote:

    I looked at McCain's claim on Obama's stance on nuclear power and I agree that his claim is wrong. Read all about Obama and the nuclear option

    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02/03/us/politics/03exelon.html"

    If you bother to read this, you’ll also spot the part about Obama being less than honest about legislation he wrongly claims getting passed.

    Goleooo, when you grow up, you'll realise that politicians all say what they think they need to say to get elected. If you want to know what politician A stands for, don't ask politician B. Trouble is, you can't believe A either. That’s why I prefer to base a judgment on a track record of doing something in office rather than merely falling for some fine words.

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  • 390. At 9:57pm on 19 Sep 2008, MagicKirin wrote:

    ref #320

    The idiots who disrupted Obama's speech or spirtua breathan th the Code Pink kooks who dusrupted McCain at the GOP convention.

    They are the ilk of All the Marble and JackForge who seem intolerant of anyone who has an opposing viewpoint.

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  • 391. At 10:02pm on 19 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    NoRashDecisions,

    as an American who grew up most of his life in Europe, graduating from Stanford,
    I can tell you this much. Most of the US bachalor degrees are pathetic. Most of people in Europe learn what we learn in College in secondary education. Thus meaning a high school european student is more qualified than a college american student.
    Unless you went to top schools and actually maintained high B or A, you are only fooling yourself.

    But our education system is a failure, because it is not about education, it is about business. That's why people are forced to do masters and phd after college, because a college degree is absolutely useless. The system is set up to milk people through loans they have to get to pay for school, when schools like harvard, stanford, and other major ones, have enough money not to even need the student to pay tuition. In a global economy a typical american student is not qualified to do anything. Unless you have experience to back up your education as many of us in science and medicine do, sacrificing hrs and working 80hrs weeks for several years to get ahead and catch up with those that are ahead of us at least in our field.

    But nothing of course is black and white. It is far more complex. The UK system is far harder as the level of education is far higher than here. Thus it is easier, though useless in terms of knowledge to get a degree here.
    However, in EU, jobs are given to the most qualified candidates and most people have to compete through examination, while in the states it is about who you know.

    Perfect Example...Look into Alaska's administration.
    A real estate agent who had a great love for cows, friend of governor becomes director of the Division of Agriculture in August. So much for someone with a degree...

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  • 392. At 10:05pm on 19 Sep 2008, turningblueandgrey wrote:

    Re 364 - true enough, but please don't overlook the American volunteers (the "Lincoln Brigade") who came to Spanish Republican aid as well, even if not as a concerted, national US effort.

    373 - agreed that in general, the British deserve credit for accepting the ebbing postwar tide of empire and rise of independent nations more peacefully and harmoniously than say, France.

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  • 393. At 10:06pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    385 MarkinOxford

    I had not seen that in post 346 Simon21 was once again falsely accusing me of racism. He cannot stop himself, it seems.

    Thank you for mentioning it - or should I say Kiaora Korua.

    As it happens I know Wellington and around, I like going to Porirua market on Saturday mornings, mix with the Maoris. And I visit a Maori family there, elderly father and mother from one of the outer Cook Islands. Plus I have partied with other Maoris in Windy Wellingtom, have worked with them for weeks on garden projects for one of my daughters.

    And I love stopping off en route from Los Angeles in the South Pacific, have had good times in Tahiti, the Cook Islands twice, Fiji twice. In Rarotonga last time I stayed with an islander - not in the tourist hotel 50 yards away- and the previous time I had stayed with a local family near the main town.

    Likewise on two trips to Fiju, if I am in the small Yasawa islands, I choose to sit and chat with Fijians in the evenings, sing along with them - maybe tell jokes, chat rugby, - rather than sitting with the. tourists whom I can meet any day anywhere. And my favourite place in Fiji is a tiny campsite run by an old Fijian, on an empty beach on the far island of Taveuni. .....Or if in Nepal, I want to be chatting with the retired Ghurkhas in Pokhara after a trek, not the British officers in the pub over the road.

    All that may be indicative of why I resent the continual false accusations of racism that Simon 21 keeps flinging at me.

    I will be in New Zealamd again in December - and while there I will look out my Maori friends, have a few Steinlagers with them. I rather doubt that they would take to Simon21 though. They wouldn't invite him to their settlements !

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  • 394. At 10:06pm on 19 Sep 2008, David Cunard wrote:

    #386. NoRashDecisions "I think everyone in our respective countries has a pretty good idea of how each other's electoral systems works (or at least everyone reading this blog.)"

    On the contrary, I think very few do. Those who read The Sun, The Mirror, The Express, News of the World rather than The Times, Telegraph or Guardian are unlikely to read about - or understand - the nuances of American politics or the part played by the Electoral College. Similarly, many Americans don't understand that the British electorate does not vote for the head of government as is the case in the United States; some even think that the Monarch has some political power.

    "And I must say, I'm very taken back by your comments regarding Bachilors digrees in the US...what makes you think it is so very much easier to get one in the US as aposed the UK?"

    Because British universities require that undergraduates can spell.

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  • 395. At 10:06pm on 19 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    sean,

    a track record?
    like the one of being a de-regulator for 24 yrs, only to become a regulator in 3 days?

    wow...choke on your goat cheese oldie.

    looks like you need to grow up faster than me.

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  • 396. At 10:08pm on 19 Sep 2008, timohio wrote:

    re: 20. RodStark:

    Not to be tedious, but only the lower level public offices were filled by lottery in ancient Athens. And you had to have basic qualifications for the job (i.e. you had property). It wasn't just anyone off the street. The Athenians weren't crazy.

    Personally I've always thought that the aristocrats of the Roman Republic had an interesting ethos. It wasn't considered enough just to be rich, you had to contribute to the greater good of the Republic in order to be considered a great man. In their competition amongst themselves, they ran for public offices and were expected to put up buildings, etc. for the public good out of their own pocket. And wealthy aristocrats were expected to serve in the military, starting as junior officers and working their way up.

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  • 397. At 10:08pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    And i am now off to a local small club, to chat with the Sikh Indians who run it.

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  • 398. At 10:11pm on 19 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    besides sean,

    do you know how nuclear energy works? You think it is easy and a walk in the park don't you?

    you are afraid of nuclear weapons on one side, and talk of nuclear power on the other as being a "breakfast breathing exercise." Or are you going to force canada to host our nuclear centrals?

    You don't want a nuclear leak in your ignorant hands, let alone a chernobyl in America.

    p.s. don't be jealous the mods block you. If you were sane, you would block yourself too.

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  • 399. At 10:14pm on 19 Sep 2008, aquarizonagal wrote:

    To#373Premiumcheese

    That was a lovely post!

    I think that you can ignore the really cranky posters. Most of us respect the viewpoints of those outside the USA, especially people from the Uk because we share so much of the same heritage and culture with you.

    I think that it was our president Truman who said: "If you can not stand the heat, get out of the kitchen!"

    So, I would say to USA posters who do not want to be challenged by our brothers and sisters from abroad, if it is too hot for you here, you might try moving to Alaska!

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  • 400. At 10:23pm on 19 Sep 2008, aquarizonagal wrote:

    To Edinglehart

    I have had a really random.

    Could this person JohnAAA have a lot of that 'fantasy money' placed on McCain. Perhaps that could be why he is so gungho (Have I used that term correctly?)

    Anyway, if I had 'fantasy money' or much of any money I would not bet on McCain.

    Good luck to you!

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  • 401. At 10:24pm on 19 Sep 2008, hms_shannon wrote:

    # 373...

    Good post,Its all about friends all over this
    small world..

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  • 402. At 10:35pm on 19 Sep 2008, seanspa wrote:

    #398, talking of sanity! I haven't said anything in support of or against nuclear power, numbskull. I was looking at Obama's support of it. Where did "breakfast breathing exercise" come from? Not my words. You're making things up!

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  • 403. At 10:47pm on 19 Sep 2008, aquarizonagal wrote:

    To#401Ukwales

    Yes!!! Please read my #399

    May you and all of us live long and prosper!

    Some of us here in the USA are doing our very best to make it better. Please keep hope, I do.

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  • 404. At 10:51pm on 19 Sep 2008, dceilar wrote:

    JohnAAA

    #326

    I would ague that the Brits had a cleaner and more moral withdrawal from empire than most - certainly better than the French.

    You forgot to mention that the peaceful ending of the British Empire was carried out by a succession of 'socialist' governments. It wasn't done by the governments that you crave for. I believe the French at that time had a succession of right wing governments.

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  • 405. At 11:15pm on 19 Sep 2008, timohio wrote:

    re: 394. David_Cunard:

    Well now, be fair. There are universities and there are universities. Everyone in the US knows which American universities are selective and which are not. Every high school senior with big ambitions can rattle off the names of the good ones and they are not all on the East Coast, either. Ohio, where I live, is filled with very good small private colleges. There is strong competition to get into the good schools. The mediocre ones tend to draw students from their own regions and those students, after graduation, tend to become local businessmen or go into technical fields. They fill local labor pools. And there is a great variety even in the mediocre schools. There will often be one or two programs that are really excellent.

    Also, I taught in one of the mediocre universities for a year and I can tell you that the best students in those colleges could compete with students in any university in the US. They are just handicapped by lack of financial resources.

    Are you maintaining that every university in the UK is better than every university in the US?

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  • 406. At 11:16pm on 19 Sep 2008, goleooo wrote:

    sean that is not what I meant.
    you misunderstood my verbiage.
    It must be one of those foreign quotes stuck to my mind, that are a little difficult to make sense of in English.

    Sorry I sounded a little like McCain there.

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  • 407. At 11:18pm on 19 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    213, 215, 390, Magic.

    refs. 189, 199, 212.

    I know whence your love of Lieberman (and your antagonism towards me). Lieberman wants dearly for Israel or America to attack Iran. Your problem is that your focus is on Israel, and have little thought for the welfare of the Middle East (an area you do not evan want to understand) or, more importantly, for your own country, America.

    You would plunge us into a devastating conflict of unknown dimension with the mistaken notion that it would protect Israel. If you are an American, Magic, your first loyalty belongs to your country - America.

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  • 408. At 11:26pm on 19 Sep 2008, MagicKirin wrote:

    ref #393

    John AAA don't take it personally that is his argument with several of us.

    You don't worship Obama so you are a racist.

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  • 409. At 11:27pm on 19 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    Magic, postcript.

    In such a war the first nation to go under would be Isreal. But with your tunnel vision, you can't see that.

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  • 410. At 11:32pm on 19 Sep 2008, SaintDominick wrote:

    As bad as our fiscal and economic situation is, it could have been a lot worse. Imagine what would have happened to millions of retirees if our Social Security funds had been converted into personal accounts and entrusted to companies such as Lehman Brothers, Bear Stearns and Merril Lynch for investment! Thanks Heaven for the courage shown by the Dems in Congress when they opposed that initiative which was championed not only by President Bush, but by Sen. McCain as well. I wonder what McCain's thoughts are on that subject; I suppose they are as fluid as his position on the bailout of AIG on Tuesday, and his contradictory remarks on the same subject on Wednesday!
    McCains flip flopping reminds me of Kerry's famous "I was for it, before I was against it", but as opposed to Kerry there is a good chance that McCain's Teflon coating will continue to protect him from in-depth analysis on that and similar issues, the same way the Keating Five issue is out of our radar scope.

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  • 411. At 11:44pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    404

    Not so. Inependence for India and Pakistan was in 1947 under Attleeas lbour PM - and very bloody.

    There was no more withdrawal from Empire until the mid-1950s, starting I believe with the Gold Coast / Ghana in 1957 and involving most of the colonies in Africa and also the Caribbean. The Tories were running the show from 1951 until 1963. The most notable Colonial Secretary was Iain McLeod. All peaceful - except that Kenya had had the Mau Mau troubles.

    I believe Singapore, Malaya, Burma, Malta, were all at that time too. Cyprus was 1960, Malta was 1964.

    In other words there was a flurry of withdrawal fro Empire / Commonwealth from the mid-1950s. Iain McLeod and his successors presided over it as Tory, drove it fast, had a rolling programme of many indpendences flowing though.

    The subsequent Labour Governemt under Wilson was not really noted for colonial withdrawal except the formalites of some of the Caribbean islands - following legislation and planning the Tories had initiated.

    Independence fror the South Pacific islands, very small and economically weak, did not occur until later in the 1970s.

    Pretty well all of it was benign and peaceful. Britain granted them all their independence but continued to provide a lot of aid.

    The general policy was bipartisan, of course - but was not a socialist achievement.

    McLeod was as crisp a fiscal conservative as you could imagine - sadly he died within weeks of becoming Chancellor oof the Exchequer in the incoming Heath Governmnt of 1970. But he seems to have been a humane and careful Colonial Secretary.

    Other than India/Pakistan, all that record compares very favourable with the French. Since independence, Britain has not sought to interfere with the ex-colonies. France to this day is interfering - lots of French military inolvement in Africa, Tahiti is a blot on France in many ways, islands in the Caribbean are still essentially seen as being part of metropolitn France.

    Dutch withdrawal from the East Indies was messy and I believe bloody.

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  • 412. At 11:48pm on 19 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    Obama will come off badly over the Fannie Mae business. Quite right too !

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  • 413. At 00:06am on 20 Sep 2008, aquarizonagal wrote:

    To #407Allmymarbles

    I feel sorry that your wisdom, experience and knowledge fall to ears that have been stuffed with the wax of dogma and rhetoric.

    Please do not stop trying to bring understanding to all of us. I always read your posts. I am very worried about how the USA will deal with problems in the Middle East.

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  • 414. At 00:08am on 20 Sep 2008, David Cunard wrote:

    #405. timohio: "Are you maintaining that every university in the UK is better than every university in the US?"

    Not having studied at all of them I cannot possibly tell, but the standard for admission is I believe higher in the UK than in the US. Goleooo at #391 answers your question better than I can.

    For a start, the UK does not have an equivalent to "state universities", descendants of "state colleges". The numbers are quite different; for example, California State University Northridge (in the Los Angeles area) has 36,000 undergraduates, whereas Oxford (the UK one) has around 12,000, but spread over 45 colleges and 'halls'. Now it may be unfair to compare CSUN with Oxford, but they both give degrees, and I suggest to you that Oxford's may be of more value than that from CSUN. In my experience, a BA in the US is roughly the equivalent to sixth form level in a British educational establishment. I know one should not generalise, but that's how it seems to me.

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  • 415. At 00:16am on 20 Sep 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    John,

    "And you completely omit countries like the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. The Anglosphere is arguably the best thing this world has seen so far."
    As Simon has notd in passing, there is something those on your list above share - they are those places in which the native population has been decimated, displaced and rendered virtually insignificant. They are the successes of "Europeanisation". They are mostly "white", and your preference for them may reveal (if you examine yourself) the reason some have accused you of racism (unconscious or not).

    The places I've highlighted, in contrast, are those for which attempted "Europeanisation" was a disaster.
    ""...the most striking and immediate effect of the spread of
    European settlement beyond the boundaries of Europe itself was
    its lethal impact on indigenous peoples and societies." -- Clive Ponting (A Green History of the
    World)"
    Interestingly, where the Spanish went, they intermingled rather more with the indigenous folk (and the Africans they imported), and although there are serious problems, the cultures are more likely to settle into stability than the places abandoned by the other Europeans. The biggest problems remaining in Latin America are mostly disproportionate land and wealth in "European" hands.

    Of course, all such generalisations are simply that.

    Salaam, etc.
    ed

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  • 416. At 00:24am on 20 Sep 2008, aquarizonagal wrote:

    To#412JohnAAA

    You do not live in America, as far as I know. So, I really must ask this: How much of your personal money have you staked that McCain will be elected president?

    This is one of the few reasons that might explain why you have flooded this blog with so much nonsense about your choice for our election.

    I am always willing to read the thoughts of those outside of the USA because it gives me a better perspective of my country but you, sir, have gone too far in my opinion.

    Recently, I have skipped most of your posts and only read the replies to you from some our most learned posters. I personally believe that these good people should not waste any more time with you.

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  • 417. At 00:29am on 20 Sep 2008, dceilar wrote:

    Come on JohnAAA those Tory goverments were extreme socialist by today's standards. Tony Benn once remarked that if MacMillian was a Labour MP during the 80s and 90s he would have been expelled for being too left wing. Those Tory governments carried on from the Labour government in it's 'socialist' plan.

    Those Tory governments believed in the 'mixed' (both public and private) economy, reconciliation with the trade unions, common foreign policy, Keynesian social economics, and, of course, the welfare state.

    Rhodesia had it's problems though, which I believe you mentioned previously that you were involved in. Were you a civil servant then?

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  • 418. At 00:37am on 20 Sep 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Mdalerwill,

    "And this is important, because many Americans are afraid that Obama is going to turn us all into socialists and throw open the doors of social welfare, and the deluge of deadbeats waiting to live off the state will drown us all."
    Too late! Shrub, Bernanke, Paulson, & Co. have already applied Social welfare to the financial system! (Note the date: MONDAY, OCTOBER 22, 2007)....

    Peace & Prosperity
    ed

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  • 419. At 00:37am on 20 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    413, Aqua.

    We are unfortunately a minority, and Obama has, for some reason I can't fathom, abandoned the subject of the Republican desire for war.

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  • 420. At 00:42am on 20 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #322, 325

    Quad Erat Demondstrandum

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  • 421. At 00:43am on 20 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    414, David.

    The best universities of the UK are comparable with the best of the US. However, the worst of US universities are so bad that they have no equivalent anywhere. They are inferior in every way to top American highschools. They should not be allowed to hand out diplomas.

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  • 422. At 00:47am on 20 Sep 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    David,

    "Because British universities require that undergraduates can spell."
    Your specs are far too rosy! I have taught in the British Higher Education system, and it is just as variable as in the USA. Many of my students arrived with very poor language skills. There are good institutions, poor ones, good teachers and poor ones, good students and poor ones, everywhere. I'm sure Mark will confirm this for you.

    Peace
    ed


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  • 423. At 00:51am on 20 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    416, Aqua.

    Johnny does rant, doesn't he? I only reply to him on nonpolitical subjects. Even then, he comments can be so long (and often a rehash of what he has said before), that my eyes begin to blur and I usually give them pass.

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  • 424. At 00:59am on 20 Sep 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    John,

    "Other than India/Pakistan, all that record compares very favourable with the French. "
    What about PALESTINE? To what does that compare favourably? Possibly only with the other contemporary mad attempt at partition on the Subcontinent...

    Peace
    ed

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  • 425. At 01:02am on 20 Sep 2008, seanspa wrote:

    Aquarigonagal, you may find that JohnAAA continues to post the same messages here, ad nauseum, to show that he will not be bullied into silence. I actually find the accusations of racism leveled at him uncalled for, so I have some sympathy for him there.

    There are a few posters here with little better to do than goad John. I am as fed up with the inevitable reply from Simon as I am with the inevitable post about polls from John. We are know about RCP polls now, John, so if we feel the need to look them up, we know how to.

    How about a day when we all just post postive things about candidates, and other posters? After all, I suspect there is very little mind-changing going on here right now. If you can't say something nice and all that. Alternatively, Justin, how about throwing in something non-political for a change? How about a discussion on good Shepherd's pie recipes? Or a discussion on whether fat frank would play well in the Galaxy?

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  • 426. At 01:13am on 20 Sep 2008, DennisinOhio wrote:

    As a native Nebraskan, I keep very current on the mood in my home state. Chuck Hagel is not respected at all in Nebraska and he continually embarress people he represents. He is not running for reelection as he knows he would be soundly defeated and his seat will soon be taken by a REAL Republican. This man is an egomaniac and will say or do anything to get attention, and is too stupid to know the difference apparently between good and bad press. The people of Nebraska will probably give the McCain/Palin ticket about 70% approval on Nov 4 and I still predict the ticket will win in a landslide of 10-15%. The Dems have self destructed and in their desperation to turn the train around, they and their RHINO friends (Reps in Name Only) only serve, through their hysteria, to drive those final nails into the Obama/Biden coffin.

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  • 427. At 01:18am on 20 Sep 2008, David Cunard wrote:

    #417. dceilar: "Come on JohnAAA those Tory goverments were extreme socialist by today's standards"

    I feel sure JohnAAA will rebut this in more words than I, but suffice it to say that this is nonsense. Having lived under both Conservative and Labour governments, I can attest that there was nothing "socialist" about Harold Macmillan, during whose administration uranium and 'heavy water' was sold to Israel and which enabled them to embark on their own nuclear weapons programme. This was contrary to the policy of the subsequent Labour Government of Harold Wilson which was against assisting Israel with the manufacture of atomic weapons. Macmillan may have been 'centre-right' but was certainly no socialist.

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  • 428. At 01:23am on 20 Sep 2008, WildGardener wrote:

    #391, #405, etc.

    You can't easily compare the US and UK/European education systems stage by stage because the organization is fundamentally different, and unless you understand the terminology, the "divided by a common language" principle applies. (As one example, "professor" has a completely different meaning on either side of the Atlantic)

    Having said that, the UK university system has been greatly devalued at the bottom end by New Labour, by renaming a large number of organizations which used to provided vocational and technical training for the 18-21 age group, (including part time and industry-linked courses) as "universities" - with a corresponding growth in worthless degree courses in Media Studies, Tourism Management, Sports Science, American Film Studies, etc, etc...

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  • 429. At 01:27am on 20 Sep 2008, David Cunard wrote:

    #422. Ed Iglehart: "David, "Because British universities require that undergraduates can spell." Your specs are far too rosy! etc."

    You apparently missed the sarcasm of the remark having ignored the writing of the questioner. I'm not all sweetness and light!!

    #425. seanspa: "Justin, how about throwing in something non-political for a change? How about a discussion on good Shepherd's pie recipes?" Indeed - and the difference between Shepherd's Pie and Cottage Pie - now that should stir up considerable debate. Or the delights of Haggis, about which Ed might be able to educate us. Just as interesting as whether Chuck Hagel will make a difference or not, if not more so.

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  • 430. At 01:29am on 20 Sep 2008, mary gravitt wrote:

    Somebody needs to question this woman. She says AIG should not have been bailed out when it controls most of the world's finances.

    Globalization is more than losing your job to China.

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  • 431. At 01:32am on 20 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #393, 397

    John,

    Small observation. One of the prime give aways that someone suffers from institutional racism is that they trot out, at the drop of a hat, all of the different cultures that they interact with. In particular focusing on 'their families'.

    I am begining to wonder whether you do have a deep seated issue that you should talk about. How do you feel when you meet that Sikh family? Is there anything that you notice is different about them, as opposed to your family?

    Analyst Sam

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  • 432. At 01:37am on 20 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    428, Wild.

    I am sorry to hear that you are introducing low-level "universities" as bad as ours. I thought we had a monopoly.

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  • 433. At 01:39am on 20 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #373

    Great post. We of the GOBBBDMAWGWKMTSPFO need to add:

    - We like Bill Bryson

    Isn't he chancellor of a University or something now?

    Funny though Notes form a Small Island is (particularly that bit about Weston Super Mare) I still believe A Walk In The Woods is the most LOL funny. He may be the one guy in the world who truly 'gets' both the US and the UK.

    Happy Sam

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  • 434. At 01:40am on 20 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #425

    Sean, I'm in.

    Can you explain how Pittsburgh has decent sports teams and all those in Philly suck?

    Confused Sam

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  • 435. At 01:41am on 20 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    430, Mary.

    You give no reference for this wild statement. Who are you taling about. By the way I bought AIG two days ago.

    It is rumoured that a group may make the government's loan unnecessary. That is talk. Not a done deal.

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  • 436. At 01:45am on 20 Sep 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    David,

    I didn't miss your sarcasm (should I be offended that you thought I might?), but the misspellings you highlighted were as nothing to the levels of functional illiteracy (and innumeracy) I found in some of my 18 year old entry-level students, and it wasn't all dyslexia by any means.

    Haggis, whether for eating or sport, is one of the delights of Scotland, often enjoyed in good company with ample lubrication.

    "Is there that owre his French ragout,
    Or olio that wad staw a sow,
    Or fricassee wad mak her spew
    Wi perfect scunner,
    Looks down wi sneering, scornfu view
    On sic a dinner?

    Poor devil! see him owre his trash,
    As feckless as a wither'd rash,
    His spindle shank a guid whip-lash,
    His nieve a nit;
    Thro bloody flood or field to dash,
    O how unfit!

    But mark the Rustic, haggis-fed,
    The trembling earth resounds his tread,
    Clap in his walie nieve a blade,
    He'll make it whissle;
    An legs an arms, an heads will sned,
    Like taps o thrissle.

    Ye Pow'rs, wha mak mankind your care,
    And dish them out their bill o fare,
    Auld Scotland wants nae skinking ware
    That jaups in luggies:
    But, if ye wish her gratefu prayer,
    Gie her a Haggis"

    Robert Burns
    Slainte!
    ed

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  • 437. At 01:46am on 20 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    428, Wild.

    All this talk of schools makes me want to check out Palin's, but I am afraid I will develop heartburn. (I'll bet basket weaving, or some such, was on the list of courses offered.)

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  • 438. At 01:54am on 20 Sep 2008, aquarizonagal wrote:

    To3425Seanspa

    Sorry, I have little sympathy for JohnAAA. It is my very humble thought that he has tried to batter all posters with his opinions. If he were a USA voter, I could have more respect for him, but he has stated more than one time that he is not.

    My question is why must he be so crazed( I am sorry if this is not a good word) about an election in which he may not vote?

    Cui bono?

    This is what I ask whenever anyone seems to be too invested in the outcome of anything.

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  • 439. At 01:58am on 20 Sep 2008, gunsandreligion wrote:

    Ms. Marbles, now that you have bought AIG,
    us taxpayers are off the hook. All I can say is -
    WELL DONE!!!

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  • 440. At 01:59am on 20 Sep 2008, seanspa wrote:

    Sam, Pittsburgh v Philly? Neither have a good rugby team so I'd struggle to comment. Is it the Pirates Crosby plays for? I remember the 70s when the Steelers were top, but more inconstent now. Hines Ward's pretty impressive though. As for Philly, there's the eagles - someone here claimed an affilation recently, so I'll heed my own advice and ay nothing. As to why, it's probably money!

    Bill Bryson - he's top of my list as someone to have a beer or five with in a pub.

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  • 441. At 02:01am on 20 Sep 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Ms Marbles,

    I'll have you know I enjoyed a semester of Bait Casting and another of Fly Casting. Physical Education was mandatory in the first two years of University as was English (and ROTC).

    In the much-vaunted British educational system it is quite possible to gain a PhD in Nuclear Physics after abandoning English at "O level" (~9th/10th grade).

    And they wonder why Americans are verbose!

    ;-)
    ed

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  • 442. At 02:31am on 20 Sep 2008, aquarizonagal wrote:

    I have a question.

    "Lipstick on a pig" was one of those Nine Day Wonders.

    However, I have not seen a word on this blog about the most recent slur on Obama that I believe was sponsored by Dobson and his 'Focus on the Family.' Why not?

    I do not have all the facts but have seen the box of waffle mix with a picture of Obama that is being sold to raise money for groups seeking to promote discrimination and divisive politics. It is disgusting! But I doubt there will be much real discussion here.

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  • 443. At 02:34am on 20 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    438. Aqua.

    Johnny obviously wants to show us that he is superior us. He may also want to prove that the British in general are superior to Americans. His vehemence is very peculiar.

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  • 444. At 02:37am on 20 Sep 2008, timohio wrote:

    414. David_Cunard:

    I think you are comparing apples and oranges. Yes, there are many public schools systems in the US that graduate poor to mediocre students who then go on to attend poor to mediocre state colleges and get degrees that are virtually worthless and shouldn't be compared to Oxbridge or MIT.

    Part of the difference in the educational systems of each country is that in the US a bachelor's degree has come to be awarded to graduates of programs who in other countries would have attended technical schools. Everyone understands that and no one would compare a degree in sports management from a local state college to a degree in computer science from a top public university. But in the state-supported college systems, there are absolutely excellent universities that produce excellent graduates. Take a look at the ranks of Nobel laureates. There are quite a few graduates of American public universities among them.

    And I think when you compare numbers of students from UC Northridge to Oxford, you are missing the point. Raw numbers of students are meaningless when you compare the difference in size of populations of our two countries.

    How about comparing Berkeley to Oxford, or Michigan to Oxford? My son has worked with Oxford students, and although he certainly respected them, I don't think he was blown away by their brilliance.

    I'm sure I could find colleges and universities in the UK that were inferior to the best public universities in the US. But that would be setting up a straw man.

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  • 445. At 02:45am on 20 Sep 2008, seanspa wrote:

    Aqua, do you mean this?

    It looks quite funny to me. They give the opportunity to either enter the site, or exit left (to the Obama/Biden site) or exit right (to the Ron Paul site).

    What is the problem, part from it poking fun at your chosen candidate? I didn't further than John Kerry saying "I know a thing or two about wafflin' and I approve this mix", so apologies if it is genuinely offensive.

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  • 446. At 02:47am on 20 Sep 2008, AndreainNY wrote:

    416. aquarizonagal:

    "This is one of the few reasons that might explain why you have flooded this blog with so much nonsense about your choice for our election."

    438. aquarizonagal:

    "It is my very humble thought that he has tried to batter all posters with his opinions."

    *************

    Odd that you should feel "battered" by a differing viewpoint. Is there something that makes you believe you shouldn't have to hear his views? He is, after all, equally entitled to his views and to post them.






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  • 447. At 02:50am on 20 Sep 2008, timohio wrote:

    436. Ed Iglehart:

    I'm sorry Ed, but the very idea of haggis makes me shudder. And I can't forgive the Scots for inventing golf. That has resulted in enormous amounts of toxic chemicals being dumped on vast stretches of territory that otherwise would be filled with native flora and fauna.

    But, fortunately, they have many other fine qualities. The Scots, I mean.

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  • 448. At 02:55am on 20 Sep 2008, Arthur Putey wrote:

    Given how far one or two of our co-bloggers are prepared to go to discredit Chuck Hagel, I'm surprised they missed one window of opportunity in particular.

    Within the last few days this BBC online forum has seen the adjective 'Marxist' flung more than once at Obama, though no actual facts have been provided to justify such a peculiar viewpoint. But then Ronald Reagan himself once said that "facts are silly things", so I guess that making fact-free accusations is par for the course for a certain kind of mindset.

    So why not go one step further and assert that Hagel was a close associate of Marx? OK, the relevant names are spelled slightly differently, but they sound the same, and that's surely good enough for your average moose-shooting creationist fan - with or without the lipstick.


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  • 449. At 02:57am on 20 Sep 2008, aquarizonagal wrote:

    To#439Gunsandreligion

    We should all get in early and buy AIG. Despite what many may think 80% of the stock in this company for only 85 million is not exactly a shabby bargain. This is not totally a 'freebe' for AIG.

    As far as I understand, AIG owes us big time and they will have to PAY, as long as we have the people in government who will see that they do so.

    I say, if you have any money left, buy, buy buy!

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  • 450. At 02:58am on 20 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    441, Ed.

    Yes, they can end the study of English at O Level. But their English reaches a higher standard than ours at that point. Basically they write much more. Even their exams, for instance, require essay answers, none of this true/false business.

    Three of my children sat O Levels and A Levels in England.

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  • 451. At 03:03am on 20 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    442, Aqua.

    I have also seen a picture of Obama as a shoeshine boy polishing the shoes of Palin. This kind of trash will only influence those who would never vote for Obama anyway.

    Such demeaning pictures might also have a reverse effect and drive people away from McCain.

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  • 452. At 03:07am on 20 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    439, guns.

    Hell, you've got it all wrong. I just want to make money!

    Any resemblance to altruism is strictly coincidental.

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  • 453. At 03:14am on 20 Sep 2008, NoRashDecisions wrote:

    David Cunard #393: I get your point on the respective electoral processes though you should know that while the US does have a primaree process, in the general election people (well, most people,) vote for party just as other countries do. I disagree with you on the university comparison thing...I think it dangerous of you to claim that most American high school graduates who can't spell are admited to college and universities, whereas most high school graduates (or the equivolant of that) in the UK who can't spell are left to their own devices without even a passing glance from universities.


    WildGardener #428: I agree with you on cautioning people against making comparison between our education systems unless they understand thuroughly how they both work, nevertheless, I don't agree with you on the '"devided by a common language" aproach explaining the difference between them. I don't know how you define the word "professor", but I define it as a teacher of a class or course. I think the word you are thinking of is 'principal (the leader of a high school) where the term which is used in the UK is 'head teacher. And to both you and AllMyMarbles at #432, how do you guys supose those who work in the film industry get their foot in the door? Don't entirely write off these "so-called" universities!!


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  • 454. At 03:14am on 20 Sep 2008, seanspa wrote:

    Damn, including links means you have to double-check everything or post at least twice - and then give up with the href.

    http://obamawaffles.typepad.com/obama_daily_waffles

    gives more details on the waffles. They deny having anything to do with Dobson, but apparently there is a picture of Obama on the packaging in a turban. They say it's only satire but I recall a publication a while back that did this and they were roundly - and rightly - condemned.

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  • 455. At 03:27am on 20 Sep 2008, AndreainNY wrote:

    My goodness.

    There is an ad from a group, Born Alive Truth, with Ganna Jesson, 31, claiming she survived a failed abortion and is asking Obama to support the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act.

    I have recently read that babies have survived abortions but I've never heard of one surviving until adulthood.

    I understand Obama's desire to not support anything that endangers abortion rights, but he did, in fact, vote against this, which in my view, was a mistake.

    And though it has been claimed that it is a lie that he voted for this, FactCheck.org has confirmed with his campaign that he did so.

    What is in dispute is his reasoning for doing so. He said it lacked certain provisions, which it did not. Then, his campaign said he would have voted for it had he been in State Office at the time of the vote.

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  • 456. At 04:07am on 20 Sep 2008, gunsandreligion wrote:

    I really don't know about how various institutions
    stack up, but I do know that there is a great deal
    of variation between Universities here in the States.

    Regardless of what Justin has posted in the past
    about sobriety in the US, my alma mater, Lehigh,
    has the distinction of having been disqualified by Playboy
    magazine as being unqualified to win a contest
    of beer drinking schools on the grounds that
    the contest was "limited to amateurs."

    However, there is some body of opinion that
    people who passed through Lehigh's hallowed
    halls after me invented a popular game involving beer, tennis balls,
    and some cups and a waterproofed table.

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  • 457. At 04:09am on 20 Sep 2008, David Cunard wrote:

    #444 Timohio "And I think when you compare numbers of students from UC Northridge to Oxford, you are missing the point."

    You have hit on the point inadvertently; there is no UC Northridge, which would mean it was part of the University of California. It's a "state university" which was formerly a "state college". The point I was attempting to make was that both Oxford and CSUN confer degrees on their students, which would appear to be identical - and BA is a BA is a BA. But it's not. To illustrate: I worked with a major Hollywood studio and backstage there were a number of younger assistants. One of these was studying for her "bachelors" and to celebrate the upcoming degree her mother was taking her to Europe. I enquired about her destination - "Parislondon" was the response. I pursued the line and asked which it was, Paris or London? She - and this was someone about to receive her BA - did not know that Paris was the capital of France and London the capital of Great Britain and were in fact to different cities - with two different languages. I don't believe this was anomaly. The upshot was that she could proudly use the post-nominal 'BA' in just the same way as an Oxford graduate could. That's the difference. The letters may be the same, but the quality is not.

    446. AndreainNY: "Odd that you should feel "battered" by a differing viewpoint. Is there something that makes you believe you shouldn't have to hear his views? He is, after all, equally entitled to his views and to post them."

    It's not that we (or she) are not interested in his views, it's the dogmatic manner in which they are presented. Never once have I seen a retraction of a statement when it has been demonstrated, without a shadow of a doubt, that he is wrong. There is no humility whatsoever, no flash of humour, no wit. We are told how wonderful he is, a past Civil Servant, apparently privy to closely guarded information, we know what wine is preferred, the size of his computer screen, how many countries he has visited and even where he will be this December. Many of us have successful lives but we don't bare all on this blog. To cap it all, he has no vote and never has explained his dedication to the Republican cause. Yes, he is equally entitled to his views, but the manner in which he posts them is frequently objectionable. That's what irks.

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  • 458. At 04:10am on 20 Sep 2008, DougTexan wrote:

    Palin experience, sounds like a trip throyugh time, possibly the good old times of the 1950's were the internet didn't exist, and what you saw, is what you bought.

    Lets delve in to another insightful piece of information as to where in time and who paid for what?

    are you buying?

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  • 459. At 04:11am on 20 Sep 2008, SamTyler1969 wrote:

    #452

    Aqua,

    Not a dumb bet! Respect is due!

    Humble Sam

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  • 460. At 04:15am on 20 Sep 2008, AndreainNY wrote:

    455, Correction:

    The survivor's name is Gianna Jessen.

    She survived the saline injection, was born weighing 2 pounds and has cerebral palsy.

    She created the TV ad directly addressing Obama, asking him to support the Act.

    She was on the BBC website in 2005.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/4500022.stm

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  • 461. At 04:19am on 20 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    439. guns; 449, aqua.

    A word about AIG. There is a senator named Chuck Schumer (D. NY). He is a piece of work with no principles or ideals and his whole purpose in life is to grab as much TV and press time as possible. If someone has an idea, before you know it good ole Chuck is presenting it as if it were his own, right there on your TV set.

    So he decides to make a name for himself by going after AIG, a huge international company. With nothing of substance he keeps feeding the media. Where there's smoke, there must be fire, right? People get panicky and then what happens? That's right, they pull their money out. And when they pull their money out, a sound company becomes unsound.

    I am not telling you guys to buy AIG, because on the stock market you never know what will happen. I took a flyer and bought when it had almost bottomed out. I know the company has massive assets, but....

    Thank you Chuck. Hope you enjoyed your game with the media. Maybe you can destroy another worthwhile company if you put your twisted mind to it. Never mind if millins of people suffer for it.

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  • 462. At 04:21am on 20 Sep 2008, seanspa wrote:

    In 445 I said that the waffle thing looked funny. It passed the mods. In 454 I found further info and said that I had changed my mind. For some reason this has been referred to the mods. Obama waffle is funny. Obama in a turban is not.

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  • 463. At 04:24am on 20 Sep 2008, DougTexan wrote:

    No wonder "not so humble Ed" likes that polling site, sorry, exited and closed it. almost funny its so,.. sided for ed. This is better as you can leave the way you came or tak an oposing view.

    Good link ed, just politicin'

    :)

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  • 464. At 04:26am on 20 Sep 2008, AndreainNY wrote:

    Oy. My apologies again.

    He would have voted for a later bill had he been in office.

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  • 465. At 04:29am on 20 Sep 2008, gunsandreligion wrote:

    Oh, I have to correct myself, I meant ping pong balls.
    I guess that shows that I missed out on this newfangled
    activity.

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  • 466. At 04:34am on 20 Sep 2008, LadyBobbieBea wrote:

    Check the trailer on You Tube for Oliver Stone's new film, "W", coming out October 17. It's rather revealing.

    b

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  • 467. At 04:36am on 20 Sep 2008, David Cunard wrote:

    #455. AndreainNY: "There is an ad from a group, Born Alive Truth, with Ganna Jesson, 31, claiming she survived a failed abortion." (For anyone Googling this, the name is actually Gianna, the omission of the 'i' was probably a mistype by Andrea.)

    According to the links on this site, Gianna's mother was seventeen and in her third trimester. We don't know what she told the technician - she could have said that she was not so far advanced in her pregnancy. Supposedly "an infant born 10 weeks premature, the product of an attempted saline abortion." How it was known that it was "10 weeks premature" is not known. Considering that the baby was put up for adoption, the story line of being with thirty other young persons, all having the same procedure, seems suspect. She does have cerebral palsy, but somehow there's something about it which doesn't quite add up. My suspicious mind no doubt, but she does have a piece of paper which says she survived.

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  • 468. At 04:38am on 20 Sep 2008, AndreainNY wrote:

    457. David_Cunard:

    "Yes, he is equally entitled to his views, but the manner in which he posts them is frequently objectionable. "

    Well, you'll just have to learn to live with him, as he's not here to entertain or impress you.

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  • 469. At 04:44am on 20 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    456, guns.

    The main thing, guns, is that you excelled. It's better to excel in beer drinking, than not to excel at all.

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  • 470. At 04:59am on 20 Sep 2008, seanspa wrote:

    Marbles, is this the same Schumer who's taken $116,400 from AIG? Not that he's alone - they are all at it.

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  • 471. At 05:22am on 20 Sep 2008, seanspa wrote:

    Aqua, I can only say you were right - there is not allowed to be a discussion on the waffle mix. When I suggested discussing recipes earlier this wasn't exactly what I had in mind, and I didn't realise that the mods would be so against it.

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  • 472. At 05:38am on 20 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    470, Sean.

    Yes, that is our boy. You would think that if Schumer thought it a rotten company, ethics would have prevented his acceptance. But we all know ole Chuckie has no ethics. AIG is only one example.

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  • 473. At 05:38am on 20 Sep 2008, gunsandreligion wrote:

    Ms. Marbles, I was a Lilliputian among
    Brobdingnagians, but at least it was the big league.


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  • 474. At 05:47am on 20 Sep 2008, Xie_Ming wrote:

    # 458

    If one lives in a world of propaganda and evil smears, then his mind will eventually be contorted in a similar fashion.

    The antidote is to seloect reputable news sources, especially those that offer different views.

    Initially, it will be discomfiting and require thought and analysis, but one will grow, both intellectually and ethically.

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  • 475. At 05:52am on 20 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    I think the reason we are not hearing from Johnny Triple A is that Obama is ahead in the polls. If it starts to lean the other way again, he will be back to say, "I told you so."

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  • 476. At 06:09am on 20 Sep 2008, David Cunard wrote:

    #468.AndreainNY: "Well, you'll just have to learn to live with him, as he's not here to entertain or impress you."

    He does neither, but he does attempt to do the latter. We do live with him, like an over-opinionated guest who bores the party, but we're too polite to say 'please leave'. He's far too fond of his own 'voice' to acknowledge that perhaps it's time to be quiet or depart.

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  • 477. At 06:21am on 20 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    473, guns.

    Do you think if I were to say "Grandpa and the Moose-hunter" that the mods would punish me? I think it is very catchy name for the duo.

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  • 478. At 06:25am on 20 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    457, David.

    Your Parislondon acquaintance was a classmate of the moose-hunter.

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  • 479. At 06:32am on 20 Sep 2008, Arthur Putey wrote:

    Re #475, I've got another theory: perhaps Johnny A-cubed is on a wild google chase following up my note (#448) in which I mischievously suggested a Chuck Hagel link with Marxism on the rock-solid grounds that the name Hagel looks and sounds suspiciously like Hegel.

    (For the record, Karl Marx was much influenced by some of the ideas of German philosopher Georg Hegel.)

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  • 480. At 06:58am on 20 Sep 2008, David Cunard wrote:

    #475. allmymarbles: "I think the reason we are not hearing from Johnny Triple A is that Obama is ahead in the poll."

    Nah - he's having an early night after staying up to take those calls from the Antipodes. Remember, the UK is ahead of NY time by five hours, and eight for the Coast. Like a bad penny, he'll turn up again! But where is MAII? Only one post on this thread and twenty-four hours ago. Or perhaps they're dining together in Bermuda, that's about mid-Atlantic, which would be a most interesting meeting!

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  • 481. At 07:03am on 20 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    458. Doug.

    Throughout our lives we meet all sorts of people. This is particularly true if you live in big cities and are an intellectually curious person. I have known communists, stockbrokers, revolutionaries, millionaires, iconoclasts, drunks, vegans, nihilists, evangelists.... You name it - I have known it.

    But does that define me? No, it doesn't, but it sure gives me a lot of knowledge about what makes people tick.

    And what about you. Have you lived your life with clones of yourself? Have you never met people outside your inner circle? I don't think you can "no" truthfully.

    It is easy to pull up all this dirt about Obama and make it sound meaningful. "You are who you met?" I don't think so.

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  • 482. At 07:26am on 20 Sep 2008, gunsandreligion wrote:

    #480, David_C, I notice that whenever I bring
    up the point that I doubt that MAII is an American,
    and could prove it by asking him a few questions,
    he moves on to another blog.

    #477, Ms. Marbles, why don't we focus on
    the candidates' literary accomplishments?

    For McCain: "The Gettysburg Address,"
    rough draft. Finally John gets a chance to
    give his own speeches.

    For Palin: a movie script: "4,000 BC"

    For Obama: "The Audacity of Hope", just the
    concrete approach needed to pop an asset bubble,
    but a real step forward from his last book,
    "How to Serve Man," which was featured in
    a Twilight Zone episode. Stay tuned for his
    next book, "The Wright Stuff."

    For Biden: "War and Peace," a short compendium
    of his foreign policy. This proves that if Putin
    gives us any more trouble, Biden can talk
    him to death, or at least put him in the
    old folks' dacha.


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  • 483. At 07:37am on 20 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    479, Arthur.
    You are evil. That is a compliment.

    480, David.
    I can't say that I miss Johnny. But I do miss staphylococcus aureus. He is outrageous enough to be fun. I like your suggestion about the misanthropes meeting. Would Johnny look down his nose and recite data? Would Staphy snarl insults and drink plonk?

    Do you think that Johnny is Staphy in a new guise?

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  • 484. At 07:42am on 20 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    482, Guns.

    People like you and me can see the funny side of an earthquake or a tidal wave.

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  • 485. At 08:14am on 20 Sep 2008, FinMember wrote:

    I thought this site was to discuss a highly ranked republican addressing Palin's inexperience. The amount of extraneous information has been very interesting however.
    Presidents are not elected for their choice of running mate but the poor judgement shown by choosing someone like P should hurt. It has in the past, a bad choice, only for political gain usually is a sign of desperation.

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  • 486. At 08:24am on 20 Sep 2008, BillTyrone wrote:

    A couple of discussion topics re US Finance + Foreign Policy situations.

    1. Financial.

    a. The proposed fix filtering through - taking a step out of the box, could this and other recent Govt / Fed buy ins actually be challenged legally?

    b. Is this scramble to fix asap actually a sound panacea in the making or pie in the sky with potentially catastrophic ramifications if it all goes pear shaped?

    c. Panic aversion or political posturing (as in delaying the enevitable)?

    Listening to a piece *

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  • 487. At 08:32am on 20 Sep 2008, gunsandreligion wrote:

    BillT, there is really no way out of this with
    all of our skin intact. It will be interesting to
    see if either candidate, if elected, has the
    forthrightness to tell the American people
    that taxes have to go up and that we have
    to tighten our belts.

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  • 488. At 08:36am on 20 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    ararizonagal

    No, I have no money waged on the outcome of the election. I think McCain is far the better choice, is all.

    dceilo

    You claimed the roll-back of Enpire was caried out by the socialists. No, it was mostly carried out by Tories. You then said the Tories were socialists. No they were not. People like Iain McLeod, the then Colonial Secretary, was scathing about socialism, he saw it as his duty to attack it for the folly it was - and is.



    The place seems to be litttered with people who fling the most absurd and sick stuff around about Palin - but get on their high horse when Obama is criticised. They indulge in personal attacks on Palin - the Palin Derangement Syndrome - but if I criticise Obama on the issues - and on his close assocations which I believe are directly relevant to making a political judgment - off go the false charges of racism again.

    So I just bang back .


    seanspa

    You are right - stupid false taunts of racism would make anyone cross. I would imagine that House Rules should block them as being insulting, but they often don't, it appears.

    If those insults had not been flung at me the first time I popped in here, I probably would have wandered off. Having been repeatedly insulted, I decided to stay.



    David_Cunard

    You are correct. I was out dor a while late last night, then went to bed. Hence no response to a lot of the silly posts since then.

    I find your posts patronising to a degree - but I only say so now because you and others seem to resort to personal criticism rather than sticking to the issues.



    Sam

    You continue to demean yourself by making snide allegations of racism.

    ............................

    Someone suggested being positive about the candidates. OK. John McCain forecast the Fannie Mae / Freddie Mac disaster and the wider mess from sub-prime mortgages, he proposed measures to try to prevent it, but that 2005 Bill was blocked the Dems. People say he has nil knowledge on the economics side - that single issue disproves the point. He is just a bit modest about his limitations, is willing to take advice. His record on Fannie Mae is good, Obama's record on Fannie Mae is awful.

    John McCain does not believe that increasing taxes as a general policy is good for the economy. He is focussed on keeping the US economy moving Obama apparently prefers to increase taxation - not for any economic reason, but for re-distribution reasons, regardless of the disincentive effects on companies and entrepreneurs.

    John McCain's proposals on energy would have a reasonable chance of gaining a far greater degree of energy independence. Obama's propsals will not - because they exclude nuclear, they oppose real drilling for oil and gas (The Dems wouldnot allow a vote on drilling - then they tried a false vote on ridiculoussly restricted drilling which de facto meant no drilling.) Obama's energy policies are a load of hot air. Or waffle. They hold out no realistic prospect of achieving energy independence. (Or so I am told by energy engineers)


    John McCain showed on proposing the surge that he had foresight on how to resolve the situation in Iraq. Obama got every call about the surge wrong - and then refused to agree that the surge was largely working.

    McCain had the right response to the Russian invasion of Georgia, Obama did not - until he caught up with McCain. McCain would not go into negotiations with enemies of the US without pre-conditions, Obama would.

    .......

    Top of the morning to you all.

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  • 489. At 08:45am on 20 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    485, Fin.

    Your last paragraph: That is what I am hoping.

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  • 490. At 08:55am on 20 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    488, Johnny.

    Same stuff. Obama-bad; McCain good. Nothing in between. If you were not so autocratic in your manner it would be possible to have a discussion with you. It is because of this attitude that I never respond to you on political issues.

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  • 491. At 09:04am on 20 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    allmymarbles.

    Au contraire - you have quite a few times tried to engage me with foorling questions. I have ignored them - and you do not like that.

    Nothing good in between ? I have said before that Hillary seemed OK. Biden is a duffer but seems OK.

    Why are you obsessive about Liebermnan ? You really hate him ?

    But please don't bother to reply.

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  • 492. At 09:05am on 20 Sep 2008, Xie_Ming wrote:

    # 490

    It is perfectly obvious that the individual is a propagandist

    and I believe none of his claims as to nationality, etc.

    This may be taken as an example of the corruption that permeates the NeoCons and is bringing America down.

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  • 493. At 09:11am on 20 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    492

    You calling me a liar about my nationality ?

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  • 494. At 09:19am on 20 Sep 2008, Ed Iglehart wrote:

    Ms Marbles,

    "But their English reaches a higher standard than ours at that point."
    On that, we'll have to disagree.

    xx
    ed

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  • 495. At 09:21am on 20 Sep 2008, Xie_Ming wrote:

    # 407

    It is a teaching of Orthodox Judaism that one living outside of Greater Israel is living in exile (galut).

    Such exiles may function as sympathizers/agents (sayanim).

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  • 496. At 09:22am on 20 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    An interesting note form an an Alaskan - "We are all freaky-deaky"

    Freaky-deaky

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  • 497. At 09:29am on 20 Sep 2008, FinMember wrote:

    Clinton had his faults (mostly personal behaviour) but he left bush a respected country in credit surplus. bush and the gop have reversed all that. Many in the rest of the world question the Iraq war and suspension of human rights for "suspected" terrorists. Furthering the interests of the military-industrial corporations and big Oil, while engendering this global financial crisis.
    How could Americans consider another gop president? But after observing US politics it is possible but very scary.

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  • 498. At 09:33am on 20 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    492, Xie.

    Perhaps, or he may just be an overbearing person who can't stand opposition. He has never criticized McCain, and it is impossible for someone to be so perfect. Even though I support Obama there are flaws in him that I have in the past discussed repeatedly.

    It is impossible for a man who appears to be intelligent to defend McCain's choice of an ignoramus as his running mate. It was obviously a political decision, but a poor one. Biden was a political decision, but Biden has credentials. Were Palin to become president her position would have to be run by old-timey Washingtonians and we would never know who was president.

    I think Johnny cannot bear to be contradicted and will stick to a position even if it makes him look foolish. He salves his ego by telling himself that we are a lessor order of humankind incapable of understanding his superior thought processes.

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  • 499. At 09:40am on 20 Sep 2008, allmymarbles wrote:

    494. Ed.

    You may well be right. I made my judgment based on my children. Three of them are published writers (general public, not academia). They also had the advantage of attending very fine English public schools, so I guess that makes the difference.

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  • 500. At 09:54am on 20 Sep 2008, JohnAAA wrote:

    allmymarbles

    That was another self-righteoes post. You seem to specialise in them.

    I have never ever seen you raise a single question about Obama. I have seen you saying appalling things about Palin, and condoning appalling things said by other people. You have never had a good word ever about Palin.

    And Joe Lieberman obviously makes your blood boil.

    That sounds an extremist position to me. You are far too preachy about others - have a look at what you yourself write.

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