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September 09, 2008

Screw This, I'm Outta Here « Blogging »

I'm fed up with Spam.

I'm moving to some new digs, over at

I will slowly close down all the comments here, as the spammers find 'em.
At some point, I may move my archives over there.

...or maybe not.

A new day is dawning, y'all.

I hesitated, because every time I've moved, I've lost readers.

Well, I think I'm only down to 3-5 now, anyway. If I can't get you few to make the transition, I'm better off not worrying about blogging anymore.

See you on the new site! And there, I promise: no comments lost to manual spam killing!!

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Posted by Nathan at 10:04 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

September 08, 2008

Amusing « Politics As Usual »

This is the most ridiculous thing I've ever read. The writer has zero grounding in anything approaching reality. It's a collection of unsupported assertions designed to explain away the fact that the Democrats' platform is not supported by even a plurality of citizens, and is slowly losing support.

Thank you for your time.

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Posted by Nathan at 07:43 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)
Re: Unforced Errors « Politics As Usual »

Something occurred to me today at work. I wasn't 100% clear in my post about the Democrats unforced error.

See, I don't think the flags getting left behind say anything about Democratic Party patriotism, or Obama's ability to lead.

But while I won't go so far as to say "perception is reality", I will insist that perception matters.

Like it or not, Democrats have a perception problem.

There is a perception that Democrats don't love America for what it is, they love it for what it could be. There is a perception that when America is attacked by terrorists or criticized by Europeans, Democrats (and/or liberals) respond by wondering what we did wrong, rather than thinking maybe we're resented because we're right and a great nation. There is a perception that Democrats think Europe and socialism are just swell, and they want to make the US exactly like Belgium and/or Sweden.

Republicans take advantage of this perception to make Democrats appear less patriotic.

Democrats often make things easier on Republicans who want to do that. Such as refusing to wear a flag lapel pin after 9/11 (or even now) because it might be perceived as too jingoistic. They come up with terms like "flyover country." They make disparaging cracks about non-urban dwellers who "cling" to guns and religion.

Democrats forget two things:
1) Due to the balance between population and geography built into our Constitution (brilliantly, by the way), Montana and Wyoming have just as many Senators as California and New York.
2) There isn't quite enough population in the urban areas like San Francisco, Seattle/Portland, Chicago, New York, and D.C. to get elected President. So Democrats condescend to and disparage the people they need to win elections. They claim to be the party of the "little guy", the worker, the lower income...but only as long as they vote and are not heard.

How else do you explain liberal and/or Democrat disdain (if not hatred) for Wal-Mart? That's the middle-class store of choice.

So the flag thing was an error, plain and simple. Call it an error of not making a smart decision in dealing with unused flags. I think it far more likely that it was an error of someone not paying attention to details, or fulfilling their responsibility.

Because all spin aside, they flags were "in and around" trash dumpsters, and they sat there for one week and one day before anyone even picked them up. There's no possible way that can be considered theft, or dishonest.

Now, is it right that this hurts public perception of Democrats? [shrug]
As was pointed out, one under-emphasized aspect of a political campaign is it demonstrates the organizational and performance skills of your administration.

Like it or not, the American flag (and these were good-quality, cloth flags here) is seen as an extremely important symbol of the United States to a huge number of its citizens. Being careless of it would be like someone tearing up all your family pictures, and then saying, "Eh, it's nothing! I didn't hurt your family! Those pictures don't represent your family in any way, it's just pixels on paper! What, are you some yokel who thinks photographs capture your soul or something?!?!? What a rube!"

But in any case, like it or not (again), perception does matter. This was a blunder. Democrats are attempting to minimize the damage with spin, but I don't think it was very effective. And it was not a blunder that was caused by trying to do anything to Republicans, or prevent Republicans from gaining ground or anything. It was a complete mistake.

Now, for balance, I'll point out something I don't like much:
Misrepresenting truth.

Go read that. I saw the original transcript, and Obama isn't trying to shift the battle to a basketball court. He was asked a question by someone in the audience, and I thought that in that sort of context, his answer was very good, very human, and not arrogant at all.

Look, people, there's enough stupid stuff going on, like Obama and his campaign ignoring Sarah Palin's successes as governor of the largest single geographical space in the US to label her as just being a mayor of a small town. She actually accomplished quite a bit as Alaska's governor, whereas Obama has spent most of his Senate career to date campaigning for President. When he hasn't been campaigning, he's been avoiding taking any stand that could hurt him politically (and that goes back to his Illinois congressional days).

So do we really need to distort what Obama said about basketball? No.

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Posted by Nathan at 05:36 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

September 07, 2008

Chiefs 0-1: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly « Kansas City Chiefs »

The Good:
Brandon Albert started and played well, nailing down the left side pretty well.
Glenn Dorsey created pressure up the middle.
Brandon Flowers played like a vet, not like a rookie in his first start. He's playing like a top-10 pick.
If you're scoring at home, that's 3 rookies in their first NFL game that played like veterans.
McBride got some pressure from the right side, nearly getting a sack.
The Chiefs converted 8/16 (50%) 3rd downs.
Brodie Croyle didn't turn the ball over, and displayed good decision-making, good touch, and good strength on his throws.

The Bad:
All sorts of pressure came from the right side as McIntosh struggled in pass coverage.
Bowe had at least four drops at key moments that could have turned the game for us.
Brodie went out of the game with a shoulder injury.
Neither the running game or the passing game could get any momentum.

The Ugly:
LJ had just over 3 yards/carry; part of this is that the Pats weren't scared of our WRs, knowing they could rotate coverage to Bowe and Gonzalez and not worry about our #2/3 WRs. And it worked, until Darling finally made a big catch near the end of the game.
We lost on the road despite winning the turnover battle, the time of possession battle, and having the Patriots run 3 plays from inside their own 1-yard line.

Reasons for optimism:
Even without Brady, the Patriots have lots of weapons, with 3 pro-bowlers on their line, Wes Walker, Randy Moss, a decent stable of RBs, and a good defense. Yet we still almost beat them on their field, despite the number of rookies and 2nd year players getting significant playing time.
This may well be the best defense we face all season, or at least the one that matches up best against us. Our offense should do better next week.

Reasons for pessimism:
We caught a break when Brady went out of the game, but still couldn't win.
We took 4 shots at the end zone from the 5 yard line, and couldn't gain a single yard.
We had the Patriots on 3rd and 11 just one foot from their own goal line, and let them get a 51-yard pass play that kept a TD drive alive.

Key takeaways: Our young players got lots of experience in this game, and it will pay off this season in improved performance. We stopped Tom Brady on his first two drives before he went out with an injury, and that isn't easy to do. We came within 5 yards of beating the Patriots on their home turf. This team will end up 10-6 or 11-5...but with 3 losses in their first 5 games.

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Posted by Nathan at 09:44 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

September 06, 2008

HUGE Unforced Error by the Democrats (UPDATED) « Politics As Usual »

Democratic convention flags found in trash:

If this catches on, it will undermine all the work Obama and Democrat politicians have done to try and convince people they love America.

In the comments, Mr Lady points to one possible explanation. Plausible, but not definitive, as I explain in my reaction.

But if you go back to the original link, and follow the links there, you find this:

The person claims the majority of the bags with flags in them were near the trash, on a dock, and would have been thrown away. The person thinks it was probably an oversight by the Democrats rather than any nefarious plot against the flag. But the person doesnt believe anyone was coming to get them: The flags were there for a week and a day and no one came looking for them.

Caution, someone may try to claim these pictures are of the flags. Nope. It's the flags in the picture I posted.

Now, I'm sure it is an oversight, not a planned dis of the nation's symbol.

However, as I say in the comments, my military experience makes me take such symbols very seriously, and there is no more important symbol of the United States than the flag. Seriously.

It probably doesn't matter as much to enough of the rest of the US to make a difference, though.

Again, it will be interesting to see how it plays out...and if it even gets mentioned by Newsweek, CNN, the NYTimes; and if so, what spin gets put on it by them.

My business is making assessments of what is really going on behind foreign govt smokescreens. And in this case, if the Republicans stole the flags, I expect to see theft charges made. Failure to make any charges will be a strong (though not definitive) indication that the flags were going to be thrown out.

Final Update:
From the Hot Air post's comments:

Remember were not just electing one person or two, were choosing an administration. The people that Obama associates with will be giving positions of authority and power over us in the new administration. We have to judge not just Obamas actions, we also have to judge the actions of those around him.

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Posted by Nathan at 10:23 AM | Comments (8) | TrackBack (0)

September 04, 2008

And Another Thing! « Politics As Usual »

The truth is slowly becoming clear to all:

All Republicans have to do is win the conservative vote to win the Presidential election.

Republicans no longer have to court Democrats to get enough.

We are now pretty much at least a 51% conservative (not Republican, mind you) nation. Maybe higher.

That's what all the churn about Palin is about. McCain got the conservatives on his side, and will win the Presidency now (barring a major miscue that allows the Democrat-supporting media to de-legitimize* either or both Republican nominees, a la Dan Quayle).

Read More "And Another Thing!" »

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Posted by Nathan at 10:50 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)
More Palin Reactions « Politics As Usual »

Someone mentioned Hillary Clinton's, "No way. No How. No McCain."

That reminded me of how horribly wooden Clinton is. I know some say she gave a good speech the other night, but in my opinion, she is a horrible speaker. Atrocious.

That line, for example, sounded like a high school drama class attempt to act. By a freshman.

And, not her fault, but her voice really stinks. It tends to rasp and grate, so you can tell she got a voice coach. But now, when she pitches her voice to carry (like she did in that line), she drones.

Bob Dole was a bad speaker with a bad voice, too. George W. Bush is a bad speaker with a pretty decent voice. The point is, you have to just speak and let the microphone do the work. Clinton can't, or won't (because of how bad her voice sounds when she speaks normally). It sucks that we demand certain aspects from our elected officials that don't have a direct relationship to governance, but Hillary Clinton lacks this key aspect. She'll never be POTUS.

Palin, on the other hand, is a good (not great) natural speaker. She has a nice voice, and she let the microphone work for her.

Here's another good roundup of Palin driving left-leaning pundits nuts.

Two related things have also struck me:
1) Lefties are deriding every Republican speech and ad as attacks and smears and negative.
2) A very, very few lefties are saying they are disgusted with their side's sudden vicious, hypocritical, and apparently sexist attacks on Palin.

Well, as has been said many times, this is nothing new.
It goes back to McCain's military service meaning nothing, but Kerry's making him a better choice for the job than Bush, after Clinton's lack of service meant nothing when Clinton was running against the elder Bush and Dole. It goes back to ignoring Senator Byrd's history as a racist (among many others), yet never relinquishing attacks against Strom Thurmond and Trent Lott as racist (among many others). It goes back to denouncing Rice, Powell, Steele, and Thomas (among many others) as not really being black, simply because they are Republican (-leaning). It goes back to abandoning the self-descriptive of "progressive" for the world "liberal" when people figured out what progressive meant, then abandoning "liberal" when people figured out it meant the same thing as "progressive" (trying to fool people with words). It goes back to playing the same word games over abortion, too.

Simply put, Democrats want power. They don't care how they get it, really. They will use all sorts of concealing terms and word games to hide who they are and what they stand for, they promise all sorts of magic dreams to single issue voters to build support, they make extravagant promises of government assistance and pork to buy votes, all so that they can enact an (elitist) agenda they know that the majority of the US will not, and would not ever, agree to. To be fair, they truly believe that once enacted, a majority of Americans will be pleased with the result...but they have no qualms about using any verbal or political tactic to get the votes to enact it over the current objections of the majority.

So attacking Palin because she is an effective conservative spokesman is par for the course.

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Posted by Nathan at 09:35 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
My Thoughts on Sarah Palin « Politics As Usual »

Man, there's just too much to link in order to make my points.

So let me just say this:

Republicans are not as sexist as left-leaning pundits think we are. Palin is popular because she has conservative credentials. It has very little to do with her gender (although some feminist-leaning Republicans are certainly into that aspect). She would have been a great pick, regardless of her gender.

See, I don't know about Democrats, but Republicans I know actually pay pretty close attention to politics. Democrats, in trying to be Big Tent (so as to get more votes, I think), have lots and lots and lots and lots of single-issue voters who don't pay attention to the needs of other single-issue voters. Blacks and Hispanics hate each other politically. We just saw the rift between feminists and blacks play out between Obama and Clinton, right? Abortion on demand is just a silly concept to the gay rights groups. If Democrats have a unifying theme, it is that they represent the assumptions and condescension (although often not the actual needs) of urban, upper-middle class whites.

Here's a good example of the Democrat prejudice at work. He absolutely doesn't get Republicans. That's not really a bad thing for us, of course. We get lots and lots and lots of mileage from left-leaning pundits not understanding how we think and why we vote. Which results in lots of Cargo Cult-like aping of conservative stances like the "Strong and Tough" pretense a few years back, and the Kerry War Hero bid that directly lost the last election.

See, conservatives (and to be honest, there is only an indirect connection between conservative voters and Republican politicians) have a unifying political concept that underlies everything we vote for:

Individualism. We believe in individual responsibility, individual accomplishments, individual failures, getting to enjoy the fruits of your individual successes and paying the price for your individual failures. That means we tend to reject identity politics that looks only at group identifiers like gender or skin color. As a result, even though we do/say things that left-leaning pundits/voters can only understand as racism, we are actually far less racist than Democrats. We see people as people. We reject Obama as being an inexperienced smooth-talker, regardless of his race. We reject Hillary Clinton as a shrill scold, regardless of her gender. We believe things like, if one person can succeed from bad circumstances, anyone can. We believe in teaching to fish, not giving a lifetime of fishes. We do not believe, like Democrats apparently do, that identity is destiny.

Another thing that Palin's performance and reception shows me is that Democrats are in big trouble, politically. Conservativism is growing in power and acceptance. Please note, conservativism, not the Republican Party. Like I said, there is only an indirect connection between the two.

In fact, there wasn't a single conservative in the field for the Republicans this election cycle. The closest was Fred Thompson, who wasn't really a conservative, but adopted the mantle of Champion of Conservative Values, with the intent to use his acting/speaking ability to articulate our political views.
Heck, as much as I like and support him, George W. Bush isn't really a conservative. He is a conservative on foreign policy issues, but doesn't get much credit for it because he can't articulate why he makes the decisions he does.

In any case, Sarah Palin represents a true "pro-life, pro-personal gun ownership, spending cuts, increased energy production, personal-responsibility, self-growth, truly representing your constituents" political philosophy. She's going to be very successful in the Republican party because of it, and it will drive Democrats nuts.

Just like it says here and here.

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Posted by Nathan at 09:12 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)