Posts tagged ‘John McCain’

October 13, 2008

Conservatives Flock to Reprimand John McCain!! (Really)

A while back I wrote that Conservatives were flocking to reprimand McCain. I was joking then, but not this time.

Did he really think running a nasty campaign was going to work amidst a financial crisis? I guess that’s just more of his sound “judgment” rearing its ugly head again.

Advertisements
October 4, 2008

Fact-Checking the VP Debate

Joe Biden and Sarah Palin Vice Presidential Debate

As with any presidential campaign, lies and half-truths flow freely. The following is from wire.factcheck.org. The guys over there have done a real job of “Keeping them Honest,” throughout the entire Election.

Some highlights:

Killing Afghan Civilians?


Palin said that Obama had accused American troops of doing nothing but killing civilians, a claim she called “reckless” and “untrue.”

Obama did say that troops in Afghanistan were killing civilians. Here’s the whole quote, from a campaign stop in New Hampshire:

The Associated Press fact-checked this one, and found that in fact U.S troops were killing more civilians at the time than insurgents: “As of Aug. 1, the AP count shows that while militants killed 231 civilians in attacks in 2007, Western forces killed 286. Another 20 were killed in crossfire that can’t be attributed to one party.” Afghan President Hamid Karzai had expressed concern about these civilian killings, a concern President Bush said he shared.

Whether Obama said that this was “all we’re doing” is debatable. He said that we need to have enough troops so that we’re “not just air-raiding villages and killing civilians,” but did not say that troops are doing nothing else.

McCain in the Vanguard of Mortgage Reform?

Palin said that McCain had sounded the alarm on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac two years ago.

Palin is referring to a bill that would have increased oversight on Fannie and Freddie. In our recent article about assigning blame for the crisis, we found that by the time McCain added his name to the bill as a cosponsor, the collapse was well underway. Home prices began falling only two months later. Our colleagues at PolitiFact also questioned this claim.

Palin’s Health Care Hooey

Palin claimed that McCain’s health care plan would be “budget-neutral,” costing the government nothing.

The McCain campaign hasn’t released an estimate of how much the plan would cost, but independent experts contradict Palin’s claim of a cost-free program.

The Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center estimates that McCain’s plan, which at its peak would cover 5 million of the uninsured, would increase the deficit by $1.3 trillion over 10 years. Obama’s plan, which would cover 34 million of the uninsured, would cost $1.6 trillion over that time period.

The nonpartisan U.S. Budget Watch’s fiscal voter guide estimates that McCain’s tax credit would increase the deficit by somewhere between $288 billion to $364 billion by the year 2013, and that making employer health benefits taxable would bring in between $201 billion to $274 billion in revenue. That nets out to a shortfall of somewhere between $14 billion to $163 billion – for that year alone.

Palin also said that Obama’s plan would be “universal government run” health care and that health care would be “taken over by the feds.” That’s not the case at all. As we’ve said before, Obama’s plan would not replace or remove private insurance, or require people to enroll in a public plan. It would increase the offerings of publicly funded health care.

Did McCain “vote the same way” as Obama on funding troops? This correction by Factcheck.org answers that question.

Correction Oct 3: This article originally faulted Biden for saying that McCain had voted “the exact same way” as Obama on a controversial troop funding bill. We said that McCain was absent for the vote and so didn’t vote at all. Biden was, however, correct.

McCain did vote against the troop-funding bill in question, H.R. 1591, on March 29, 2007, when it originally cleared the Senate. The vote to which we referred, and which McCain missed, was a later vote on the House-Senate compromise version of the same bill, on April 26, 2007. McCain opposed the bill, which Obama supported, because it contained language calling for withdrawal of troops from Iraq. Biden was responding to Palin’s accusation that “Obama voted against funding troops.” Obama voted for the bill March 29 and April 26, and then on May 24, 2007, following a veto by President Bush, Obama voted against a similar troop-funding bill, H.R. 2206, that lacked any withdrawal language.


To read more facts on the topics that the Vice Presidential candidates discussed Thursday night, check out wire.factcheck.org and PolitiFact.org.

A few other misleads of note:

  • Palin said, “We’re circulating about $700 billion a year into foreign countries” for imported oil, repeating an outdated figure often used by McCain. At oil prices current as of Sept. 30, imports are running at a rate of about $493 billion per year.
  • Palin threw out an old canard when she criticized Obama for voting for the 2005 energy bill and said, “that’s what gave those oil companies those big tax breaks.” It’s a false attack Sen. Hillary Clinton used against Obama in the primary, and McCain himself has hurled. It’s true that the bill gave some tax breaks to oil companies, but it also took away others. And according to the Congressional Research Service, the bill created a slight net increase in taxes for the oil industry.
  • Palin repeated a falsehood that the McCain campaign has peddled, off and on, for some time; that under Obama “millions of small businesses” will pay high taxes. As we reported June 23, it’s simply untrue that “millions” of small business owners will pay higher federal income taxes under Obama’s proposal.
  • Palin: We need to look back, even two years ago, and we need to be appreciative of John McCain’s call for reform with Fannie Mae, with Freddie Mac, with the mortgage-lenders, too, who were starting to really kind of rear that head of abuse.

    October 4, 2008

    Does Folksy REALLY work for you?

    Sarah Palin

    Sarah Palin

    I was born, and spent most of my childhood, in a small town. When I was twelve years old, my family picked up and moved to the big city of Atlanta. From one southern state to another, that hospitality was something that was never lost. I still smile at strangers when I walk down the street. Wave at my neighbors as I drive through my subdivision. Guest are still offered something cold to drink, something to eat. While others from bigger cities may scoff at this, one thing we from the south will always be known for is a hospitality that is genuine and meaningful.

    But here’s the thing… There is quite a fine line between that genuine graciousness and the quite disingenuous nature of what we saw displayed on stage, by Governor Palin, last night.

    Leading up to last nights debate, I had the opportunity to see several clips from Palin’s previous debates; and for a moment I thought perhaps that that would be the Palin that would show up last night. Not that I heard anything riveting during any of those performances… but the “folksiness” was kept to an absolute minimum. Why the drastic change of persona over the last couple of years? Is it that she doesn’t think she can speak to Americans, as a whole, as if we have more than two braincells to rub together? The only time I speak in the manner that she spoke to us last night is when I am playing with my 9 month old nephew. Being talked to as if I am an infant, or at best, a toddler is not something that I would calling “endearing.”

    Didn’t we, as Americans, learn our lesson last go around with Bush? That wanting to have a beer and pizza with the president (or in this case, vice president) isn’t a qualifying factor? That it simply cannot be the barometer by which we measure presidential competency? It’s as if many of us are allergic to those who are intelligent. How else can you justify smearing someone for being a Harvard Law grad, while praising someone who took years to find a major, after changing schools three or four times? Yes, that may make her “normal” and “just like many other Americans,” but is that what we really want in someone who has to deal with the complexities of being one of the leaders, if not the leader, of the “Free World?”

    The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.

    I know that the Obama/Biden ticket has been trying to draw comparison between the Bush/Cheney Administration, and what a McCain/Palin Administration would look like, but after last night, never before has the similarities been so glaringly obvious. A (potential) vice president that has their own interpretation of the constitution? Where have we seen that before?

    Palin made an attempt to further explain her position on the constitution and the role of the vice president today on FoxNews:

    Incoherent? Maybe. Unnerving? Definitely.

    September 30, 2008

    Palin makes it easy.

    I’m sure that, by now, everyone has seen Tina Fey’s masterful “reenactment” of the Palin/Couric interview from Saturday nights SNL. I simply MUST call it a reenactment due to the fact that much of it didn’t even have to be written. Most of the “verbage” (as Palin would call it) was lifted straight from Palin’s lips and delivered straight to Tina’s.

    Here is a side by side comparison:

    Ouch.

    Meanwhile, the McCain camp is continuing their line of attack on the “biased liberal media” for daring to hold them accountable for anything that comes out of their mouths. They’ve now added the phrase “gotcha journalism” to their repertoire of campaign vocabulary; which seems to include any question that Palin does not know how to properly answer. How convenient.

    So, let’s see if we have this straight… A young man asked her a question she didn’t fully understand because she was in a pizza place at the time? Let’s examine what she actually said, shall we?

    “How about the Pakistan situation?,” asked Rovito, who said he was not a Palin supporter. “What’s your thoughts about that?”

    “In Pakistan?,” she asked, looking surprised.

    “What’s going on over there, like Waziristan?”

    “It’s working with [Pakistani president] Zardari to make sure that we’re all working together to stop the guys from coming in over the border,” she told him. “And we’ll go from there.”

    Rovito wasn’t finished. “Waziristan is blowing up!,” he said.

    “Yeah it is,” Palin said, “and the economy there is blowing up too.”

    “So we do cross border, like from Afghanistan to Pakistan you think?,” Rovito asked.

    “If that’s what we have to do stop the terrorists from coming any further in, absolutely, we should, Palin responded, before moving on to greet other voters.

    Where exactly does the breakdown in communication occur?? Is it that she hears words differently if she is otherwise engaged in… ya know, buying food? Is it even safe to say that, at the VERY least, she knew that they were talking about Afghanistan and Pakistan? Maybe it’s that she thought perhaps he meant in some fictional world where there is a place called Afghanistan and Pakistan and that he clearly didn’t mean THE Afghanistan and Pakistan?

    Straight talk express, my eye.

    September 26, 2008

    Palin is Out of Her League

    After watching Palin in interviews, it’s a given that she will be slaughtered during the debates. She has an extremely limited vocabulary that is compounded by her weak grasp of the issues. As described by conservative columnist, Kathleen Parker, “Palin filibusters. She repeats words, filling space with deadwood. Cut the verbiage and there’s not much content there.”

    I could not say it better myself.

    I honestly wonder how many other conservatives out there are willing to admit that Palin is completely out of her league. That this pick was a huge gamble that only paid off in the short run, and things are starting to unravel… Beginning at the base.

    Kathleen Parker joins a steady stream of conservatives that have been questioning McCain and his decision-making throughout this campaign.

    Kathleen Parker

    Kathleen Parker

    Palin Problem, by Kathleen Parker on National Review Online

    If at one time women were considered heretical for swimming upstream against feminist orthodoxy, they now face condemnation for swimming downstream — away from Sarah Palin.

    To express reservations about her qualifications to be vice president — and possibly president — is to risk being labeled anti-woman.

    Or, as I am guilty of charging her early critics, supporting only a certain kind of woman.

    Some of the passionately feminist critics of Palin who attacked her personally deserved some of the backlash they received. But circumstances have changed since Palin was introduced as just a hockey mom with lipstick — what a difference a financial crisis makes — and a more complicated picture has emerged.

    As we’ve seen and heard more from John McCain’s running mate, it is increasingly clear that Palin is a problem. Quick study or not, she doesn’t know enough about economics and foreign policy to make Americans comfortable with a President Palin should conditions warrant her promotion.

    Yes, she recently met and turned several heads of state as the United Nations General Assembly convened in New York. She was gracious, charming and disarming. Men swooned. Pakistan’s president wanted to hug her. (Perhaps Osama bin Laden is dying to meet her?)

    And, yes, she has common sense, something we value. And she’s had executive experience as a mayor and a governor, though of relatively small constituencies (about 6,000 and 680,000, respectively).

    Finally, Palin’s narrative is fun, inspiring and all-American in that frontier way we seem to admire. When Palin first emerged as John McCain’s running mate, I confess I was delighted. She was the antithesis and nemesis of the hirsute, Birkenstock-wearing sisterhood — a refreshing feminist of a different order who personified the modern successful working mother.

    Palin didn’t make a mess cracking the glass ceiling. She simply glided through it.

    It was fun while it lasted.

    Palin’s recent interviews with Charles Gibson, Sean Hannity, and now Katie Couric have all revealed an attractive, earnest, confident candidate. Who Is Clearly Out Of Her League.

    No one hates saying that more than I do. Like so many women, I’ve been pulling for Palin, wishing her the best, hoping she will perform brilliantly. I’ve also noticed that I watch her interviews with the held breath of an anxious parent, my finger poised over the mute button in case it gets too painful. Unfortunately, it often does. My cringe reflex is exhausted.

    Palin filibusters. She repeats words, filling space with deadwood. Cut the verbiage and there’s not much content there. Here’s but one example of many from her interview with Hannity: “Well, there is a danger in allowing some obsessive partisanship to get into the issue that we’re talking about today. And that’s something that John McCain, too, his track record, proving that he can work both sides of the aisle, he can surpass the partisanship that must be surpassed to deal with an issue like this.”

    When Couric pointed to polls showing that the financial crisis had boosted Obama’s numbers, Palin blustered wordily: “I’m not looking at poll numbers. What I think Americans at the end of the day are going to be able to go back and look at track records and see who’s more apt to be talking about solutions and wishing for and hoping for solutions for some opportunity to change, and who’s actually done it?”

    If BS were currency, Palin could bail out Wall Street herself.

    If Palin were a man, we’d all be guffawing, just as we do every time Joe Biden tickles the back of his throat with his toes. But because she’s a woman — and the first ever on a Republican presidential ticket — we are reluctant to say what is painfully true.

    What to do?

    McCain can’t repudiate his choice for running mate. He not only risks the wrath of the GOP’s unforgiving base, but he invites others to second-guess his executive decision-making ability. Barack Obama faces the same problem with Biden.

    Only Palin can save McCain, her party, and the country she loves. She can bow out for personal reasons, perhaps because she wants to spend more time with her newborn. No one would criticize a mother who puts her family first.

    Do it for your country.

    Kathleen Parker is a nationally syndicated columnist.

    © 2008, Washington Post Writers Group

    Link to the article.

    September 25, 2008

    McCain Gambles In Effort To Regain The Offensive

    Isn’t that what we ALL do when life gets a little hard…. Take a time out!!

    – – –

    John McCain, losing ground as the economic crisis deepens, sought today to beat Barack Obama to the punch by suspending his campaign, postponing Friday’s presidential debate, and calling for an emergency meeting between the President, congressional leaders and both nominees to produce legislation addressing the threat of a Wall Street collapse and a dangerous recession.
    Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

    September 20, 2008

    Tim Wise does it again… (White Privilege)

    Disclaimer: I’m not personally saying that I agree with everything he says, but I do enjoy the irony.

    By Tim Wise

    Tim Wise

    Tim Wise

    For those who still can’t grasp the concept of white privilege, or who are constantly looking for some easy-to-understand examples of it, perhaps this list will help.

    White privilege is when you can get pregnant at seventeen like Bristol Palin and everyone is quick to insist that your life and that of your family is a personal matter, and that no one has a right to judge you or your parents, because “every family has challenges,” even as black and Latino families with similar “challenges” are regularly typified as irresponsible, pathological and arbiters of social decay.

    White privilege is when you can call yourself a “fuckin’ redneck,” like Bristol Palin’s boyfriend does, and talk about how if anyone messes with you, you’ll “kick their fuckin’ ass,” and talk about how you like to “shoot shit” for fun,
    and still be viewed as a responsible, all-American boy (and a great son-in-law to be) rather than a thug.

    White privilege is when you can attend four different colleges in six years like Sarah Palin did (one of which you basically failed out of, then returned to after making up some coursework at a community college), and no one questions your intelligence or commitment to achievement, whereas a person of color who did this would be viewed as unfit for college, and probably someone who only got in in the first place because of affirmative action.

    White privilege is when you can claim that being mayor of a town smaller than most medium-sized colleges, and then Governor of a state with about the sam e number of people as the lower fifth of the island of Manhattan, makes you ready to potentially be president, and people don’t all piss on themselves with laughter, while being a black U.S. Senator, two-term state Senator, and constitutional law scholar, means you’re “untested.”

    White privilege is being able to say that you support the words “under God” in the pledge of allegiance
    because “if it was good enough for the founding fathers, it’s good enough for me,” and not be immediately disqualified from holding office–since, after all, the pledge was written in the late 1800s and the “under God” part wasn’t added until the 1950s–while believing that reading accused criminals and terrorists their rights (because, ya know, the Constitution, which you used to teach at a prestigious law school requires it), is a dangerous and silly idea only supported by mushy liberals.

    White privilege is being able to be a gun enthusiast and not make people immediately scared of you.

    White privilege is being able to have a husband who was a member of an extremist political party that wants your state to secede from the Union, and whose motto was “Alaska first,” and no one questions your patriotism or that of your family, while if you’re black and your spouse merely fails to come to a 9/11 memorial so she can be home with her kids on the first day of school, people immediately
    think she’s being disrespectful.

    White privilege is being able to make fun of community organizers and the work they do–like, among other things, fight for the right of women to vote, or for civil rights, or the 8-hour workday, or an end to child labor–and people think you’re being pithy and tough, but if you merely question the experience of a small town mayor and 18-month governor with no foreign policy expertise beyond a class she
    took in college–you’re somehow being mean, or even sexist.

    White privilege is being able to convince white women who don’t even agree with you on any substantive issue to vote for you and your running mate anyway, because all of a sudden your presence on the ticket has inspired confidence in these same white women, and made them give your party a
    “second look.”

    White privilege is being able to fire people who didn’t support your political campaigns and not be accused of abusing your power or being a typical politician who engages in favoritism, while being black and merely knowing some folks from the old-line political machines in Chicago means you must be corrupt.

    White privilege is being able to attend churches over the years whose pastors say that people who voted for John Kerry or merely criticize George W. Bush are going to hell, and that the U.S. is an explicitly Christian nation and the job of Christians is to bring Christian theological principles into government, and who bring in speakers who say the conflict in the Middle East is God’s punishment on Jews for rejecting Jesus, and everyone can still think you’re just a good church-going Christian, but if you’re black and friends with a black pastor who has noted (as have Colin Powell and the U.S. Department of Defense) that terrorist attacks are often the result of U.S. foreign policy and who talks about the history of racism and its effect on black people, you’re an extremist who probably hates America.

    White privilege is not knowing what the Bush Doctrine is when asked by a reporter, and then people get angry at the reporter for asking you such a “trick question,” while being black and merely refusing to give one-word answers to the queries of Bill O’Reilly means you’re dodging the question, or trying to seem overly intellectual and nuanced.

    White privilege is being able to claim your experience as a POW has anything at all to do with your fitness for president, while being black and experiencing racism is, as Sarah Palin has referred to it, a “light” burden.

    And finally, white privilege is the only thing that could possibly allow someone to become president when he has voted with George W. Bush 90 percent of the time, even as unemployment is skyrocketing, people are losing their homes, inflation is rising, and the U.S. is increasingly isolated from world opinion, just because white voters aren’t sure about that whole “change” thing. Ya know, it’s just too vague and ill-defined, unlike, say, four more years of the same, which is very concrete and certain.

    White privilege is, in short, the problem.

    September 18, 2008

    Obama and the FM’s: Corrections

    Relevant corrections appear at the end of the original entry.

    This entry has been inspired by a comment that I received from a McCain supporter. I like to try to deal in fact as much as possible. Supporters on both sides are subject to being deceived by campaigns stretching the truth, cherry picking information and at times, even out right lying.

    Jen C left an “impassioned” response to my blog regarding Republicans Turning on McCain. It wasn’t MY blog, but a blog supplied by The Huffington Post (yes yes, that horrible Liberal Rag!) I somehow doubt that she actually READ the article, but c’est la vie!

    The icing on the cake from Jen’s response was a link to YouTube that she left of Obama “confessing” to being Muslim. ::rolls eyes:: Now, one would think that I wouldn’t waste time with such drivel, but it does give me the opportunity to highlight more lies from the McCain Camp.

    As such I am led to the following…

    As supplied by FactCheck:

    McCain’s allegation about Obama’s contributions from the FMs is not true. As we’ve said many times, it’s illegal for candidates to accept contributions directly from corporations. But the FEC does keep track of the employers of individuals who give at least $200 to candidates. And according to the respected nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics, in the 2008 election cycle Barack Obama has received $18,150 from employees of Freddie Mac. CRP does not list any Obama contributions from Fannie Mae.

    Let’s not stop there:

    But Obama is not No. 2 on the list of those getting contributions from the two companies, as McCain said. In fact, he ranks fourth in combined contributions, trailing Sen. Christopher Dodd, Rep. Melissa Bean and Sen. Lamar Alexander. McCain also neglects to mention his own $9,500 from Freddie Mac.

    Somehow, I doubt that the John McCain supporters have a problem with McCain also receiving money from employees of Freddie Mac. Let’s call this one of those “educated guesses.”

    Furthermore:

    Obama is second on the list of those getting contributions from employees of only Freddie Mac. But, seriously, neither candidate’s number really makes much difference. Obama has raised more than $389.4 million in the 2008 election cycle. That makes his combined contributions from the FMs work out to roughly 0.005 percent of his total contributions.

    Know what is even more of a hoot??

    And McCain has raised about $174.2 million, making his combined FM contributions work out to … 0.005 percent.

    Oh and as far as his other ties to the FM’s?

    On June 4, Obama announced that Caroline Kennedy, Eric Holder and Jim Johnson would head his VP search committee. Kennedy, of course, is the daughter of JFK. Holder was Bill Clinton’s deputy attorney general. Johnson remained on Obama’s committee for just a week. He resigned on June 11, amid allegations that Johnson received preferential treatment from Countrywide Financial Corp.

    But Johnson wasn’t the current CEO of Fannie Mae, as you might think from listening to McCain. He left nine years ago, in 1999.

    Source: http://wire.factcheck.org/2008/09/18/freddie-fannie-and-barack/

    I, of course, respect voters decision to support John McCain, but before running with every little thing he says, they may want to verify it first. He’s been known to lie.

    In the interest of fairness and keeping voters informed: Obama’s Lies.

    ________________________________________________________________

    Source: http://wire.factcheck.org/2008/09/19/freddie-fannie-and-barack-%e2%80%94-corrected/

    Turns out, our initial post “Freddie, Fannie and Barack” was erroneous. We’ve struck out the incorrect sections from our earlier post.

    We said originally that Obama was the fourth largest recipient of donations from troubled mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. That’s wrong. Our post was drawn from data from the Center for Responsive Politics’ Web site, OpenSecrets.org. But the data we used were incomplete.

    We talked to a spokesperson from the Center for Responsive Politics who told us that looking at all election cycles since 1989 (the first year for which CRP has data), Barack Obama is in fact the second-largest recipient of contributions from employees of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, their unemployed spouses and dependent children and both of the FMs’ political action committees.

    According to CRP, Obama’s total contributions from the FMs work out to $126,349. Of that sum, $6,000 comes from the FMs’ political action committees, and the rest from individuals who work for one of the two companies. Obama’s FM contributions account for about 0.03 percent of his total contributions to date. McCain’s FM haul is a smaller $21,550, all from individuals. That’s about 0.01 percent of his total contributions. We stand by our doubts that either candidate will be much swayed by numbers of this size.

    September 16, 2008

    Conservatives Turn On McCain-Palin


    The facts are this: Every so called “qualification” that the Mac Camp have attributed to Palin, if not an outright lie, has been a gross exaggeration. Someone who is truly qualified for the position does not have to inflate their resume in the way that she has. This may work for obtaining menial jobs, but we are talking about the vice presidency to a man who has had several bouts with melanoma.

    This is serious stuff.

    Sarah Palin has many virtues. If you wanted someone to destroy a corrupt establishment, she’d be your woman. But the constructive act of governance is another matter. She has not been engaged in national issues, does not have a repertoire of historic patterns and, like President Bush, she seems to compensate for her lack of experience with brashness and excessive decisiveness.

    More on Sarah Palin
    Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

    September 16, 2008

    Republicans Flock to Reprimand John McCain!!

    OK, maybe not so much a “flock” as much as a little teeny trickle. But, it’s still slightly amusing, and marginally enjoyable all the same.

    Mitt Romney is the latest republican to openly criticize John McCain for his turn toward “The Dark Side” of politics.

    See the video:

    Mr. Romney also touched on the fact that, despite numerous unbiased reporting of his distortion of the facts, McCain and his henchmen have continued down the same path. He warned that if they insisted on continuing down this road, that they will continue to take heat for it.

    So far, the Mac Camp haven’t strayed too much from message.