Tag Archives: McCain

Politics

McCain supporters are not racist

There has been an increasing amount of talk about how McCain’s supporters (well, mainly on the Palin side) have begun a pretty vicious campaign and there has been an increasing amount of vitriolic racial attacks.  A lot of emphasis on Obama being a secret Muslim,  or calling him an Arab, or a lot of things.

Blogger Interrupted has posted a video detailing some of the ignorant attacks of SOME of the attendees.  With thousands of ralliers, it’s not surprising that you find some people like that.

What was more surprising was that finally, John McCain began to calm things down.  He took a step back and actually disputed some of his supporters.  In fact, one moment I can be proud of, he directly told the crowd that they did not need to be afraid of Obama.   He did, however, stop short of saying what Colin Powell did in his endorsement the other day: that even if Obama was a Muslim, that shouldn’t be an insult or a weakness.

Here’s a video of a brief moment:

The best thing I’ve seen so far, is the reaction of a few smart McCain supporters to xenophobic McCain supporters.  They essentially yelled at them till they left.   I think it does go to show that despite accusations from both sides, you shouldn’t jump to conclusions.

Featured

Alfred E Smith dinner was a Presidential roast

This was a refreshing change from the increasingly dark and mean presidential campaign.  John McCain and Barack Obama managed to sit down together at the 63rd annual Alfred E. Smith foundation dinner.  It’s become somewhat of a tradition for the presidential contenders to appear at this white-tie event to raise money for the charitable foundation, and actually seems to lighten the mood.

The candidates basically roast each other, and spare no expense mocking themselves either.  You can check out all the videos below.

Quite honestly, I think that McCain was a better tonight, but Obama definitely scored some big points with a few of his jokes.  Both quickly addressed the ‘That one’ comment from the debate (Obama explains that his name is actually swahili for ‘that one’.  McCain says it’s a nickname, and Obama’s nickname for him was ‘George Bush’).  Perhaps my favourite moment from Obama’s side was his mockery at his own perceived arrogance.  When asked for his greatest strength, he said his humility, and for his greateset weakness he said he was a little too awesome.  Also, keep an eye out for the middle name jokes and Obama’s wicked jab at Giuliani.   I’ll stop spoiling things now, and let you enjoy it.

McCain’s Speeches
Part1

Part 2

Obama
Part1

Part 2

Politics

Presidential Debate #2 overview

The “town hall” style meeting held instead of an actual debate was more of an annoyance than anything else.  Just now, when both candidates are sharpening their attacks and all that, we’re forced to settle for no real discusson or debate.  Instead, Tom Brokaw asks them questions he’s selected from submissions (and the audience gets to ask), and would then gently chastize each candidate for consistently going longer than the one minute they were each assigned to answer the questions.

For the majority of the time both candidates would deftly side-step the question and then simply talk about whatever they wanted. It was frustrating, and I was dissapointed that this is how it ended up. Still, I hope some people managed to get answers to their questions.

For those of you who’ve missed it, C-Span has the entire thing for you, and you can watch it below. Not exactly as riveting as most of the others I’ve seen, but not a bad way to spend an hour.

Watch this pile of terrible horse puckey if you are bored. Let us know in the comments.

Politics

Is Obamamania fizzling out?

Until recently, Barack Obama’s lead in the polls appeared insurmountable.  The presumptive Democratic nominee’s message of change seemed to be resonating with the American public, while his Republican counterpart’s efforts to endear himself to evangelical voters was proving largely fruitless.  In July, for example, polling website electoral-vote.com had Obama leading his opponent by over 100 electoral college votes.  Similarly, the results of a national poll released in mid-June showed Obama holding a healthy 15 point lead over McCain. 

Over the last few weeks, however, Obama’s lead has shrunk dramatically.  Pollster.com shows him leading by less than 70 electoral college votes, with states like Indiana and Missouri – until recently considered winnable by Obama – trending Republican.

Electoral-vote.com paints an even worse picture for Obama fans.  According to its calculations, McCain is leading in the vitally-important swing states of Ohio and Florida and, to a lesser extent, Colorado.  Under this scenario, Obama’s margin over McCain is a measly 3 electoral votes; a virtual dead-heat.  Should the election unfold along these lines, Virginia, the only remaining state in the ‘undecided’ column, would decide the presidency.  Both candidates have a realistic shot of taking Virgina – but it’s hardly the situation Obama expected to be in as the summer draws to a close.

So what happened?  Are people fed up with his incessant, ambiguous demands for ‘change?’  Perhaps.  More likely, though, is that McCain’s negative attack ads are finally having an impact.  Joan Walsh, writing in Salon, notes: “John McCain’s decision to slime Barack Obama … seems to be paying off in the short term, judged by his recent climb in many polls.”  And a host of news outlets and editorial boards have offered similar analyses.

McCain appears to be taking a page out of Bush and Rove’s playbook.  A cursory glance at 2004 polling data reveals a striking similarity between the two election cycles: during the summer of ’04, Kerry led Bush by several dozen electoral college votes and looked poised to take back the Oval Office for Democrats.  However, shortly after the launch of the now-infamous Swift Boad ads, Kerry’s lead began to evaporate.  Of course, we all know how that story ends.

Is a similar fate in store for Obama?  Hopefully not.  Already, he’s started to fight back.  According to an article in today’s Independent, Obama is “now running an uplifting national advertising campaign while delivering fierce attacks on his opponent at the local level in key swing states [Emphasis added].”

While some would say that Obama’s new strategy is hypocritical given his pledge to “transcend the bickering of national politics,” I think it’s about damn time he started to fight back.  Negative campaigns win, whether we like it or not.  And, to be perfectly honest, I’d rather see Obama take the White House with a vitriolic campaign than lose it with an “uplifting one.”

Regardless, if he doesn’t manage to reverse his sliding poll numbers soon, negative campaign ads could be the least of Obama’s worries.

Music

Obama and McCain’s favourite music

If you remember, way back in April, we briefly covered the presumptive presidential candidates favourite music.  At that time, John McCain had not really let any kind of full list go.  Now we have it.  Blender Magazine (the unloved offspring of Maxim) has compiled a list of the candidates’ own choosing.

Check it out below.

John Mccain’s Top Ten
1. Dancing Queen ABBA
2. Blue Bayou Roy Orbison
3. Take a Chance On Me ABBA
4. If We Make It Through December Merle Haggard
5. As Time Goes By Dooley Wilson
6. Good Vibrations The Beach Boys
7. What A Wonderful World Louis Armstrong
8. I’ve Got You Under My Skin Frank Sinatra
9. Sweet Caroline Neil Diamond
10. Smoke Gets In Your Eyes The Platter

Barack Obama’s Top Ten
1. Ready or Not Fugees
2. What’s Going On Marvin Gaye
3. I’m On Fire Bruce Spingsteen
4. Gimme Shelter Rolling Stones
5. Sinnerman Nina Simone
6. Touch the Sky Kanye West
7. You’d Be So Easy to Love Frank Sinatra
8. Think Aretha Franklin
9. City of Blinding Lights U2
10. Yes We Can will.i.am

If I was living in the US, I think the fact that Obama picked Sinnerman as one of his favourite songs would be enough to convince me to vote for him.

It’s also pretty funny that Obama had to pick that will.i.am song (Yes we can).  It’s basically a 4 minute long celebrity endorsement of Obama.  Not that I blame him for publicizing it, it’s probably a pretty smart move.

McCain’s choices are even more amusing.  It’s hard to imagine a grizzled POW and war veteran loving ABBA so much, but to each their own, I guess.  And at least he does love Louis Armstrong, extra points for that for sure.

[Source: NPR thanks to Blender]

Politics

McCain’s advisor promised to leave campaign

Well, only sort of.  This is an extremely long overdue post (especially since Obama is now actually the Democratic nominee).

Back in May, almost exactly a month ago, Mark McKinnon kept his promise that he would leavve the McCain campaign if Obama was going to win the nomination. read more »

Politics

The Nightmare Ticket

The Onion, in a stroke of genius, has run an article lampooning the hundreds of times we hear about possible VP nominations for each party.  Especially on the Democratic side.

Ever since we heard that Obama’s nearly got the show wrapped up, we’ve been hearing demands from the Clinton camp that she be made VP as a “consolation prize”.  Others have been saying that Obama and Clinton should want to get together to form the “Dream Ticket”.

Well, my friends, I give you the Nightmare Ticket.

According to the Onion (yes, it’s fake news, for those who don’t know) McCain, Clinton, and Obama would run together.

“”No other ticket is capable of rallying this nation around a clearer, more unified message of chaos and hopelessness,” the candidates said in unison from three separate podiums, each adorned with its own American flag arrangement and personal message. “Together, we will lead this nation into the future—a future where absolute deadlock over even the most minute decisions and total inefficiency on matters of the war, the economy, and the environment will launch a bold new age of confusion and social decay. For America, the only choice is [indecipherable]!”

Hilarious.

They also make jokes about how they’d split up the office into President, Vice President and also a “Middle President”.  Sounds funny, but it’s probably pretty accurate about what would happen if Obama did pick Clinton.  I think Bill would be heading for that “Middle President” role.

Politics

McCain’s running mates

McCain, according to the NYT, has compiled a very short list of possibly running mates.

So far, Gov. Charlie Crist of Florida, Gov. Bobby Jindal of Louisiana and Mitt Romney have been asked to meet McCain at his ranch.  Notice that Huckabee is nowhere to be found.

Most interesting of all of this is Gov. Bobby Jindal, the first Indian-American Governor in the United States.  SepiaMutiny, a popular blog on Indian-American affairs has definitely taken notice.  They (in my opinion) correctly note that part of the reason Jindal is in the running is to counter Obama’s appeal.  In essence, it’s the “not a white guy” approach.  Racist, perhaps, but something that is doubtless being considered.  With someone “ethnic” on the slate, McCain would do well to avoid the inevitable charges of racism that will be levelled at him during the campaign against Obama.

The NYT article has also smartly noticed that just the appearance of considering these people will help McCain’s campaign in their representative states, and it is possible that Jindal’s consideration is simply symbolic.

Overall, Crist looks to be the favourite.  Romney really doesn’t bring much to the table, besides maybe helping capture the democratic stronghold of Massachusetts.   Crist can deliver Florida, a state that is undoubtedly embittered after the Dems decided not to award them their delegates at the national convention.   Florida is what made Bush, and I imagine all eyes will be on it in this election too.

Politics

Senators say whether they’d agree to be vice president

TheHill.com has somehow managed to ask all 97 sitting Senators whether or not they would consider the VP nod from the presidential candidates.

They’re reproduced (verbatim, they claim) the responses from all the Senators.  Here’s a couple of nice little jewels:

Sen. Bob Bennett (R-Utah)
“Of course. Big house, big car, not much to do. Why not?”

Sen. Sam Brownback (R-Kan.)
“I would be honored to be asked. I’ve got to appraise the position in considering it. But I haven’t gone to the step of saying whether I would or wouldn’t at this point … I’d probably take away from the ticket, too. There’s always pros and cons. I’m strong pro-life, pro-marriage, and some people would say, ‘Well, I don’t like that.’ But really, people vote for president. Not vice president. I think vice president can hurt you more than it can help you. I can’t remember any time in my lifetime where I voted for a president because of the vice presidential nominee.”

Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.)
“Yes. Sign me up. I’ve been kidding people for years: The hours are better, the wages are just as good — whoever heard of a vice president getting shot at? — and it’s a great opportunity to travel. And actually since time has gone by, the job is robust … So sure. Anybody here would, if they’re going to be honest. The chances are slim to none. But I promise you, I would deliver all three of Delaware’s electoral votes.”

Sen. Larry Craig (R-Idaho)
“I would say ‘No, Hillary.’ ”

Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa)
“No, I’d have Jon Stewart stand in for me. Jon Stewart. That’s my guy.”

Sen. Daniel Inouye (D-Hawaii)
“If I were asked, I would say, ‘You’re out of your mind.’ ”

There’s tons more of these in the article above.  Really, these answers cast a whole new light on the US Senate.  For one, there are a lot of insanely old Senators.  There was one talking about how he was shortlisted for a VP spot back in ’76, and a few more who’ve been around at LEAST that long.   There’s self-deprecation, with one Senator saying that there are lots of capable people, and he’s not one of them.

It’s a good read, so definitely check it out.

Music Politics

Comparing Presidential Music

According to his Facebook fan page, Barack Obama is a fan of legendary ’90s super-group The Fugees! If you were wavering before (and are a 4080reader), this alone should clinch it for you. Even ten years ago it would have been political suicide for a presidential candidate to publically reveal he or she listened to hip-hop, let alone consider a rap group among his/her favourite musicians (can you imagine Bill Clinton revealing he was a fan of, say, Public Enemey in 1991?). Also on Obama’s list are Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Bob Dylan, Stevie Wonder and Johan Sebastian Bach. Our boy has an impressive, if not eclectic, taste in music.

On Hillary Clinton’s list? Carly Simon, Aretha Franklin, the Rolling Stones and U2. Not bad, although I’d give the edge to Obama so far.

How about McCain? Nothing! He lists his favourite movies (“Viva Zapata,” “Letters From Iwo Jima” and “Some Like It Hot” (seriously?)), books (“For Whom The Bell Tolls”) and tv shows (“24” and “Seinfeld”), but a list of favourite music is strangely missing. Does the Republican nominee not listen to music? Or perhaps his taste is so strange his handlers are afraid to reveal it to Facebookers? Interesting.

Finally, how about Dennis Kucinich, that plucky underdog who, for the longest time, refused to quit the race? Dude is a fan of Michael Franti and Spearhead! Sold!