A Safety Tip- History Doesn’t Repeat Itself, But It Does Rhyme

    Some people will say that words like scum and rotten are wrong for Objective Journalism — which is true, but they miss the point. It was the built-in blind spots of the Objective rules and dogma that allowed Nixon to slither into the White House in the first place. He looked so good on paper that you could almost vote for him sight unseen. He seemed so all-American, so much like Horatio Alger, that he was able to slip through the cracks of Objective Journalism. You had to get Subjective to see Nixon clearly, and the shock of recognition was often painful.

    Hunter S. Thompson’s eulogy to Tricky Dick Nixon.

    ***

    But watching Palin’s speech I had no doubt that I was witnessing a historic, iconic performance. The candidate sauntered to the lectern with the assurance of a sleepwalker – And immediately launched into a symphony of snorting and sneering remarks, taking time out in between the superior invective to present herself as just a humble gal with a beefcake husband and a brood of healthy, combat-ready spawn who just happened to be innocent targets of a communist and probably also homosexual media conspiracy. She appeared to be completely without shame and utterly full of shit, awing a room full of hardened reporters with her sickly sweet line about the high-school-flame-turned-hubby who “Five children later” is “Still my guy.” It was like watching Gidget address the Reichstag.

    Matt Taibbi, discussing the most disgraceful VP pick in history.

    ***

    This is the ninth presidential campaign I’ve covered. I can’t remember a more scurrilous statement by a major party candidate. It smacks of desperation. It renews questions about whether McCain has the right temperament for the presidency. How sad.

    Joe Klein, discussing McCain’s willing and gleeful descent into the gutter.

    ***

    He has poisoned our water forever. Nixon will be remembered as a classic case of a smart man shitting in his own nest. But he also shit in our nests, and that was the crime that history will burn on his memory like a brand. By disgracing and degrading the Presidency of the United States, by fleeing the White House like a diseased cur, Richard Nixon broke the heart of the American Dream.

    Hunter S. Thompson again.

***

In the last few days, the McCain campaign has decided to go full on sleaze, and we now have the spectacle of major party candidates routinely, in their stump speeches, questioning the patriotism of the opposition. Not only questioning the patriotism, but insinuating, quite clearly, that Sen. Obama is in league with terrorists. In addition, they have released a commercial and have falsely stated in speeches that Sen. Obama does not support the troops and has accused them of being wanton murderers.

Make no mistake, for those of you in the media who still want to pretend that McCain is not in control of his actions, or does not want to pursue this course. This is their strategy. This is a choice. They made the decision to turn this election into a sleazefest:

“We are looking for a very aggressive last 30 days,” said Greg Strimple, one of McCain’s top advisers. “We are looking forward to turning a page on this financial crisis and getting back to discussing Mr. Obama’s aggressively liberal record and how he will be too risky for Americans.”

And the base is reacting. Whipped into a froth by their venomous cheerleading vice-jingoist in chief, a self-styled pitbull in heels, they are now shouting “treason” and “traitor” and even getting one fellow inspired enough to yell “kill him” in regards to Bill Ayers. She was even unable to stop bashing Joe Biden as he was today attending his mother-in-law’s funeral- she found time to spew out some more of her home-spun bile with a smile as she continued to recite her litany of nonsense and babble.

Meanwhile, we are required to ignore the unsavory connections of John McCain and Sarah Palin. We have to pay no attention to McCain’s relationship with radicals and Nazis and his weighing in on behalf of a man who has admitted to murdering a civil rights leader. We are told the Keating 5 fiasco is old news, and besides, McCain was innocent anyway, despite having professed guilt for two decades (fun fact- McCain’s lawyer is John Dowd, who was also Monica Goodling’s lawyer). Now that is change you can believe in! We must ignore McCain’s decades old relationship with Nixon-era crook G. Gordon Liddy. We must pay no attention to the fact that Sarah Palin is married to a man who willingly belonged to a political party whose leaders openly proclaimed that “My government is my worst enemy. I’m going to fight them with any means at hand.”

Having failed to sell themselves to the American public, McCain and Palin have nothing left to do but fling shit and hope they can turn Obama into Osama bin Laden. And even then, the most recent polls are showing they are failing. With McCain/Palin trailing by almost ten points in multiple polls, and with the markets diving yet another 5% today, the Republican candidates have nothing left to do but to stir up virulent anti-Obama sentiment, question his patriotism, assert he is a liar, and hope for the best. Not the best for the country, mind you. The best for them. This is John McCain’s respectful campaign. This will be his enduring legacy.

And they will fail, but you have to realize what we are in for these few weeks. If this is the rhetoric now, it is going to get worse. As such, a video for you all:

Yes, this is going to get worse, and no one should be surprised.



Stay Classy, Palinites

Charming:

McCain had said that racially explosive attacks related to Obama’s former pastor, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, are off limits. But Palin told New York Times columnist Bill Kristol in an interview published Monday: “I don’t know why that association isn’t discussed more.”

Worse, Palin’s routine attacks on the media have begun to spill into ugliness. In Clearwater, arriving reporters were greeted with shouts and taunts by the crowd of about 3,000. Palin then went on to blame Katie Couric’s questions for her “less-than-successful interview with kinda mainstream media.” At that, Palin supporters turned on reporters in the press area, waving thunder sticks and shouting abuse. Others hurled obscenities at a camera crew. One Palin supporter shouted a racial epithet at an African American sound man for a network and told him, “Sit down, boy.”

No doubt, by this afternoon, there will be a unanimous outcry by all the right-wing bloggers decrying the jack-booted thugs and this incipient fascism. After all, these are the same guys who got their panties in a bunch because… people called a radio show while Stanley Kurtz was on. Surely whipping crowds into a froth will upset them.

Never mind.

*** Update ***

Eugene Robinson asks the real question– will the media play ball and give McCain what he wants, which is to change the debate from the economy to all the nonsense chum McCain and Palin are throwing in the water. Personally, I think the economy is just too big to ignore right now, and there might even be a backlash for McCain attempting this.



Gee- I Wonder Why This Is Happening

I can not imagine why the McCain campaign would do this (via):

Constantly under the watchful eyes of security, the media wasn’t permitted to wander around inside Coachman Park to talk to Sarah Palin supporters. When reporters tried to leave the designated press area and head toward the bleachers where the crowd was seated, an escort would dart out of nowhere and confront him or her and say, “Can I help you?” and turn the person around.

When one reporter asked an escort, who would not give her name, why the press wasn’t allowed to mingle, she said that in the past, negative things had been written. The campaign wanted to avoid that possibility Monday.

Couldn’t have anything to do with this, could it:

So we have McCain today getting his crowd riled up asking who Barack Obama is and then apparently giving a wink and a nod when one member of the crowd screams out “terrorist.”

And later we have Sarah Palin with the same mob racket, getting members of the crowd to yell out “kill him”, though it’s not clear whether the call for murder was for Bill Ayers or Barack Obama. It didn’t seem to matter.

Maybe the McCain campaign isn’t as incompetent as we think they are. They at least have the good sense to keep the media away from the loons at their rally.

This is going to get ugly, fast.



Headline Of the Year

Lehman Managers Portrayed as Irresponsible

No kidding. Loved this:

One Lehman document among thousands reviewed by the House committee showed that four days before the bank filed for bankruptcy protection, Lehman’s compensation committee was asked to grant $20 million in “special payments” for three executives who were leaving, Mr. Waxman said. An e-mail exchange recommending a delay in bonus payments was apparently brushed aside.

Another document showed that executives were warned in a January 2008 meeting that the company was facing liquidity problems. Yet the firm moved forward with capital outlays, including $5 billion in bonuses, $4 billion in shares and $750,000 in dividend payments between 2007 and the firm’s bankruptcy filing on Sept. 15.

Awesome.








Bloodsport

This video is disturbing. But know that Sarah Palin stongly endorses this despicable practice:

via Andrew








The Bailout to Nowhere

I guess the credit crisis isn’t that bad after all, because according to this report, Wall Street is about to say “Thanks, but no thanks” to the bailout:

Fears are mounting that many Wall Street banks and financial firms will refuse to participate in the US government’s $700bn bail-out package, leaving global markets and world economies in a perilous state for months to come.

‘There is a growing feeling that banks … might instead decide to tough it out,’ said Thomas Caldwell, chairman and CEO of Caldwell Financial, a $1bn-plus fund manager.

For the past two weeks all eyes in the market have been focused on US Congress and its attempts to pass Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson’s bail-out package – a bill to allow the US government to buy up to $700bn of toxic mortgage-related assets from American banks, which would in theory free the credit markets and set the gears of global commerce spinning once more.

Why might they decide to let things go down the tube rather than take the help? According to the story, the same greed that helped get us into this position:

But Wall Street analysts, believe the addition of so many terms to the bill might deter potential participants.

One of the least attractive elements is a section designed to curb executive pay at banks that participate in the bail-out package. These include limiting stock-related pay and banning ‘golden parachutes’ for executives.

‘I think this hodge-podge of regulations and rules will be enough to put many [chief executives] off participating,’ Caldwell said.

Sources close to Goldman Sachs and Merrill Lynch indicated the banks might choose not to participate in the bail-out as there is a growing view on Wall Street that the market may be bottoming out.

Charming. But, on the upside, if the market is bottoming out and they don’t need to take taxpayer money, I support it. If they are wrong, and bring about financial armageddon due to sheer greed, well, at least we know who to blame.

We’ll just file this under “country first.” I pray to the all-knowing FSM that either this report is wrong or Wall Street is right about the market having already bottomed out.








OJ To The Big House

OJ was found guilty on thirteen counts:

O. J. Simpson was found guilty late Friday on all 12 counts stemming from a confrontation in a hotel room last year, including armed robbery and kidnapping.

The verdict, which comes 13 years to the day after Mr. Simpson was acquitted in the highly publicized murders of his ex-wife and her friend, concluded a four-week trial that many have seen as a proxy for those unsatisfied by that 1995 outcome.

Mr. Simpson now faces 15 years to life for the kidnapping charge as well as a minimum of at least an additional 10 years in prison on the other charges. His attorney, Yale Galanter, said he would appeal.

After the verdicts were read, the judge revoked the bail for Mr. Simpson, a Heisman Trophy winner and an inductee in the National Football Hall of Fame. As his sister, Carmelita, wept and fainted in the front row, he was led away in handcuffs. Mr. Simpson is scheduled to be sentenced on Dec. 5.

Two thoughts:

First, His children now have a dead mother and their father, her murderer, will now die in jail. Anyone who would subject his children to that is subhuman.

Second, I can only hope that this will give the Brown and Goldman families some sense of justice. The last time I saw Fred Goldman on television, he was a snarling, bitter, angry man, and it was clear that the murder of his son had consumed him. Maybe this will give him some peace of mind.

Consider this your one and only post on the matter.