Archive for the ‘John McCain’ Category

>Catching up on the craziness

April 14, 2010

>There is so much craziness going on, and all of it seems to be coming from the Party of No, at various levels.

The picture is not of Republican crazies, more on this group later.

First, Nebraska Governor Dave Heineman signed a bill that restricts abortion to less than 20 weeks based on the assertion that fetuses feel pain after that.

Based on that logic, shouldn’t he also be signing a bill that bans circumcision? I’m just askin’.


Hillary Clinton’s name is being tossed around as a possible nominee to SCOTUS to replace Justice John Paul Stevens. A Republican friend of mine is promoting a conservative Internet “poll” which so far has 91% of respondents voting “no” to the possibility of a Clinton appointment. I would love to see Secretary Clinton appointed.

Also a lot of talk is being generated about Obama has to pick a “mainstream” nominee. What in the world does that mean? Republicans want a a progressive president to pick a conservative Supreme Court Justice. Ha! Obama could pick Mother Teresa (were she still alive) and Republicans would fight the nomination. So, President, pick whoever you want, because you are going to get a fight anyway, so you might as well fight for someone that fires up your base.


Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell want the big banks to fail. In fact, he says we can’t get out of this recession until they do.

Not only is the GOP the Party of No, they are the Party of Fail. Rush Limbaugh wants the president and the country to fail, now their senate leader is wanting the banks to fail.

Sorry, Mitch, but the President’s plan (that rescued us from economic meltdown) is working. I hate to get all “economics” on you (maybe in a later post), but we need to be hoping for the banks to succeed, just as we need to be hoping for small businesses to succeed.


And John McCain. What can I say? He is just a poor old man that should have quit while he was ahead. Americans used to love and respect him. Many Democrats and independents supported his presidential bid in 2000. You know, when he was making his name known as a maverick.
Now he has just gone Borneo it seems (that’s an old college phrase for “whacko”).


Speaking of old college days and such, I’m sure glad that there are still some hippies entertaining us.

Enjoy this video by Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros.

>Trick or Treat

November 1, 2008

>Trick or Treaters in this neighborhood were greeted by the future president, and never was so much laughter heard from little kids and even more from their parents.

Barack got fist bumps from 3 and 4 year olds, comments such as “Obama brings change,” and even had his picture taken by a mom. We probably had 50 or 60 kids, some in groups of 6 or 7, some by themselves, some 16 or 17 years old. The older ones discussed the election seriously. Some came to the door while their parent waited in the car at the curb. The parents hooted and hollered, and some motioned for Barack to come to the car so they could meet him.

A couple of kids said they wanted to see the scary mask, so they saw this guy.

The choice is clear.

These kids will hopefully tell their parents, and those of voting age will be reminded of how important this election is.

Never miss an opportunity to promote your candidate.

>Western Tribune Column and Art Announcement

October 25, 2008

>On Saturday, October 25, 2008 at Avondale Park in Birmingham…Art in the Park. Ted Openshaw will have on display and for sale his work. About a hundred other artists. 10-4

Ok I forgot about posting my column from the Western Tribune the other day. Here it is.


“Mr. Ayers, I don’t care about an old washed-up terrorist.”

Those were John McCain’s words in reference to former radical Bill Ayers during the final presidential debate.

If he doesn’t care, why did his campaign begin placing Robocalls, automated phone calls, the very next day that say the following?

“Hello. I’m calling for John McCain and the RNC because you need to know that Barack Obama has worked closely with domestic terrorist, Bill Ayers, whose organization bombed the U.S. Capitol, the Pentagon, a judge’s home, and killed Americans.”

Furthermore, during the debate, John McCain said he was not running a negative campaign.

This is the most deceitful presidential candidate I have ever seen, and I can’t believe anyone would vote for him.

Barack Obama was eight years old when Ayers committed his despicable acts. Since then, Ayers has become a distinguished professor and received man of the year awards.

As William Ibershof, the federal prosecutor of the Ayers case said, “I am amazed and outraged that Senator Barack Obama is being linked to William Ayers’s terrorist activities 40 years ago when Mr. Obama was, as he has noted, just a child. Although I dearly wanted to obtain convictions against all the Weathermen, including Bill Ayers, I am very pleased to learn that he has become a responsible citizen.”

A responsible citizen.

I am not sure I would even assign that label to John McCain, the way he is acting.

Then there is this. After Obama explained that he voted against a ban on a procedure because it did not include protections for the health of the mother, McCain mocked “health of the mother”, saying that was an “extreme” position. If my daughter was experiencing a difficult pregnancy that was going to kill her, I would not consider it extreme to lose the fetus to save her life.

A tragedy, yes. Extreme, no.

When this particular disregard for women is considered along with his stated position of being against equal pay for women, I am amazed that any female would vote for the man. To do so would be regarding themselves as second class citizens.

>Debate Winner

October 16, 2008

>The winner of last night’s presidential debate was Joe the Plumber (for a while he had his own Wikipedia page, now it’s redirected to that link).

So let’s see what the polls say. Again, call-in and text-in polls don’t count. Scientific polls do.

CNN Obama 58 McCain 31

CBS Obama 53 McCain 22

Insider Advantage Obama 49 McCain 46

All that adds up to no gain for McCain.

The hardest thing to believe is that there are still people who are undecided as to who they will vote for. What does it take?

Anyway, this morning Joe the writer is about to become Joe the wallpaper stripper/painter. Let’s get busy.

>Western Tribune Column October 15 2008

October 16, 2008

>My Western Tribune column from October 15, 2008

McCain’s ace in hole turns out a joker

The John McCain campaign was a hand of cards just waiting to fold under the up swell of support that Barack Obama expected after his acceptance speech in Denver. But McCain chose Sarah Palin, the governor of Alaska, in hopes that her experience in the Governor’s office and her fundamental Christian beliefs would excite Republicans as well as attract independents.

That strategy worked, as long as American voters were kept uninformed about her. Over time, we have learned a lot, and I could produce a long list of misstatements and missteps that she made, but the ethics violation announced on Friday trumps them all.

A bipartisan Alaska legislative panel found Palin in violation of the state ethics law. The statute says that holding office is a public trust, and any effort to benefit a personal interest is a violation of that trust. In common language, she abused her power as an executive officer of the state.

Sarah Palin has been hammering the voters with questions about Barack Obama in an attempt to cast doubts on his trustworthiness. Now that she has been shown to have violated the public trust, should she be casting stones at Obama?

In past weeks Palin has claimed that her executive experience has prepared her to lead the country. Now, when we think about her executive experience, we are reminded of her abuse of power. Do we really want to send someone to Washington with that record after enduring eight years of Dick Cheney?

Moving up the ticket to John McCain, questions have been raised about his judgment. Barack Obama highlighted this argument effectively during the second debate when he questioned McCain’s judgment in voting for the war in Iraq.

Now we can really question his judgment in choosing his vice presidential pick. The investigation was authorized in July, well before he announced his choice. He or his staff had to know that the investigation was underway.

McCain is known to be a gambler, but why would a candidate take a risk with the most important decision he makes during his campaign? What does it tell us about the kind of forethought that might go into his selections for cabinet members?

McCain’s ace in the hole has turned out to be a joker, and it’s time for the voters to call his hand.

>Early Voting…Tonight’s Debate

October 15, 2008

>Early voting has been going on in several swing states. Why don’t we have this in Alabama? It would allow voting by people who may be unable to vote on November 4.

Absentee and Early Voting

Early voting differs from absentee voting in that voters may visit an election official’s office or, in some states, other satellite voting locations, and cast a vote in person without offering an excuse for not being able to vote on election day.

Early voting generally is conducted on the same voting equipment used in the regular election, as opposed to absentee voting, which is conducted on mail-in paper ballots. The time period for early voting varies from state to state, but most often it is available during a period of 10-14 days before the election, generally ending on the Friday or Saturday immediately preceding the election.

For information on voting absentee in Alabama click

Early voting is taking place in several swing states, and of course, early voters are polled just like regular voters. Here are some results, from fivethirtyeight and early voter poll results are listed alongside likely voter poll results:

In New Mexico Early voters Obama + 23% Likely voters Obama +6%

In Ohio Early voters Obama +18% Likely voters Obama +4%

In Georgia Early voters Obama +6% Likely voters McCain + 11%

In Iowa Early voters Obama +34% Likely voters Obama +10%

In North Carolina Early voters Obama +34% Likely voters McCain +5%.

This averages to 23% advantage for Obama.

Interesting observations:

In 2000 and 2004, early voters leaned toward the Republican. Bush had 62% of early voters in 2000 against Gore, and 60% against Kerry in 2004.

In past elections, early voters tended to be older, and more male than female. CW should allow that this favors Republicans, so one would expect McCain to do better among early voters.

Early voters seem to be staunch supporters, so this should not be taken as an indicator of how undecided voters will cast their ballots.

What can be learned is that Obama’s base, his staunch supporters, are turning out. Barring unforeseen events, they should also turn out on election day.

Picture credit CNN Getty Images

The final presidential debate is tonight, from Hofstra University in New York. The candidates will be sitting awful close to each other. Obama better watch out, because McCain has vowed to “whip his you know what.” I’d love to see them get into a scrap. Tune in.

>Bill Ayers…Marylin Shannon

October 13, 2008

>A lot of people who read this blog were not around, or not paying attention to the news in the late 1960’s and early 1970’s when Bill Ayers was doing his thing. But the McCain campaign is trying to paint Obama with the same brush they paint Ayers with. So I thought I would put a few facts out there.

Ayers was a member of the 60’s radical group the Weather Underground, or the Weathermen, a group that bombed public buildings to protest the war in Southeast Asia.

The Weathermen got their name from the lyrics to a Bob Dylan song, Subterranean Homesick Blues. Admit it, this brings back memories.

While Ayers has admitted to the acts for which he is accused, he was never convicted for any of them.

Much of what Ayers has said in recent years has been taken out of context. In 2001 after the 9/11 attacks he wrote a letter to the Chicago Tribune, in which he wrote, “I condemn all forms of terrorism — individual, group and official…Today we are witnessing crimes against humanity on our own shores on an unthinkable scale, and I fear that we may soon see more innocent people in other parts of the world dying in response.”

Yet people still try to portray him as a terrorist. They disregard that he is now a Distinguished Professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago, or that he had worked extensively for social justice and educational reform. In 1997 he was awarded the Citizen of the Year Award by the city of Chicago.

Ayers was one of the three co-authors of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge grant proposal in 1995 that won almost $50 million for school reform. Barack Obama was named to the Chicago Annenberg Challenge Project Board of Directors to oversee grants in the Chicago area. In addition both Ayers and Obama served on the board of the Woods Fund of Chicago, an anti-poverty group between 2000 and 2002. The Woods Fund of Chicago is an offshoot of the Woods Charitable Fund. Ayers is still on the board.

This is hardly an association that should reflect on Obama. Even William C. Ibershof, the lead federal prosecutor of the Weathermen Underground case thinks not. He wrote, in the New York Times on October 9, 2008, “I am amazed and outraged that Senator Barack Obama is being linked to William Ayers’s terrorist activities 40 years ago when Mr. Obama was, as he has noted, just a child. Although I dearly wanted to obtain convictions against all the Weathermen, including Bill Ayers, I am very pleased to learn that he has become a responsible citizen.”

But if you really want to bring up guilt by association, consider this clip:

MCCAIN SPOKESPERSON PFOTENHAUER: The article also concluded is that if Senator McCain had hung out with somebody who had bombed abortion clinics, no one would consider [raising the issue] illegitimate.

Enter Marylin Shannon. Shannon was a McCain delegate to the Republican Convention, from Oregon, who praised a woman convicted of attempted murder of an abortion clinic doctor.

From Raw Story:

McCain and Shannon appeared together at a fundraiser for the Oregon Citizens Alliance in 1993, a gathering of Christian right extremists that even fellow Republicans advised McCain not to attend because the group was so far outside the mainstream.

Speaking before McCain, Shannon offered some kind words for Shelley Shannon, who was accused and later convicted of shooting an abortion doctor: “I’m not related to Shelly Shannon, but I think she’s a fine lady,” the vice chairwoman of the state Republican Party said. McCain apparently said nothing to contradict that judgment, and less than three months later he voted against a bill that would make abortion clinic bombings a federal crime.

So McCain not only “pals” around with terrorist’s buddies, he endorses domestic terrorism by practically condoning bombing abortion clinics. OK, that may be a stretch (although McCain’s vote was wrong), wait, it’s not a stretch. McCain is siding with those who promote violence against doctors. Read the Raw Story link.

Anyway, the point is, this type of guilt by association reeks of McCarthyism. Don’t we ever learn?

>Rough Seas Ahead

October 10, 2008

>I am so glad that I am not a Republican today, because I would be so embarrassed to be associated with the party. McCain supporters are getting up in front of crowds and acting like complete fools. And the world is watching.

But it starts at the top. Much has been said of McCain’s uncontrollable anger and his erratic behavior.

I wonder if some of his anger is due to guilt about how he treated his first wife, Carol McCain. You remember, the woman who was injured in an automobile accident while he was being held prisoner, and who he abandoned, disfigured and disabled, for his current wife Cindy.


In 1979 – while still married to Carol – he met Cindy at a cocktail party in Hawaii. Over the next six months he pursued her, flying around the country to see her. Then he began to push to end his marriage.
Carol and her children were devastated. ‘It was a complete surprise,’ says Nancy Reynolds, a former Reagan aide.
‘They never displayed any difficulties between themselves. I know the Reagans were quite shocked because they loved and respected both Carol and John.’


But Ross Perot, who paid her medical bills all those years ago, now believes that both Carol McCain and the American people have been taken in by a man who is unusually slick and cruel – even by the standards of modern politics.
‘McCain is the classic opportunist. He’s always reaching for attention and glory,’ he said.
‘After he came home, Carol walked with a limp. So he threw her over for a poster girl with big money from Arizona. And the rest is history.

Now, while the Republicans are having their angerfests, (after admitting that if they talk about the economy, they lose), Obama is reaching out to people in a calm and determined manner, offering hope and solutions.

So when you are navigating rough seas, like today’s economy, who do you want, the calm determined captain looking ahead, or the angry, erratic captain jumping from place to place?

>A Shout Out to Bigots?

October 8, 2008

>The Democrats are up 3-0 in the debate series. Here are the numbers, using a couple of the same polls I used after the first presidential and vice-presidential debates. Fox polls and Drudge polls don’t count, so don’t ask.

CNN Obama 54 McCain 30

CBS Obama 40 Tie 34 McCain 26


And that sheriff in Lee County, Florida who used Obama’s middle name yesterday while introducing Sarah Palin may have been in violation of federal law. Story

A complaint sent to the U.S. Office of Special Counsel alleges that Scott violated the Hatch Act because his agency receives federal dollars, and Scott was engaging in political activity while on duty and in uniform. Erica S. Hamrick, senior attorney for the agency, said in an e-mail Tuesday that an investigation was being opened. Neither she nor her office could be reached for further comment Tuesday. …

Some also are questioning whether Scott violated the county code of ethics. The statute says no county government employees are allowed to wear any uniform or clothing that would identify them as such while engaging in a political campaign not sponsored by the county, even if they are off-duty.

Some believe the comment could have had “racial connotations”:

James Muwakkil, founder of the 300-member Fort Myers Coalition for Justice and a life member of the NAACP and ACLU, called for a formal apology. He said that while he supports the sheriff’s right to speak his mind, he criticized him for doing so while in uniform. He felt it was an affront to all county residents who may not share the sheriff’s views. He also felt there were racial connotations.

The entire McCain campaign is teetering toward racism. I know that one racist supporter does not mean the whole campaign is, but in Clearwater yesterday, this happened.

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.”

It’s not a big jump to think of John McCain’s referral to Barack Obama as a disdainful “That one” last night as a shout out to bigots.

Depersonalizing African Americans has long been a tactic of white bigots, and the use of terms such as “boy” or “that one” is easily recognizable.

Recall that John McCain voted against the law that created the national Martin Luther King Holiday in 1983, and in 1987 supported the Arizona Governor’s effort to rescind the Holiday in his state. In speaking to the Arizona Teenage Republican Convention that year about the Governor’s decision “McCain said that he felt (governor) Mecham was correct in rescinding the holiday.” [Washington Post, 1/14/1987; Phoenix Gazette, 4/13/1987].

So it’s no surprise that someone his age could still hold feelings of animosity even if, like George Wallace, he has had a change of heart in his later years. It’s becoming obvious.

>What I’ve Been Waiting For

October 6, 2008

>You knew it was coming. And there couldn’t be a better time.

Some of you are too young to remember these hearings in 1990, or the criminal activity that led up to them, or John McCain’s link to Charles Keating. This 13 minute video will get you up to date. Now, who do you want in charge of the economy? 747 Savings and Loans institutions failed, and the cost to taxpayers was $124 billion.

Robert Bennett, the Special Counsel for the Senate Ethics Committee said during the 1990 hearings: of the five senators here before you, Senator McCain had the closest personal friendship with Charles Keating. Their friendship predated Senator McCain’s political career. Senator McCain also was the only one who received personal as well political benefits from Charles Keating.” [Senate Ethics Committee Hearing into the Keating Five]

Talk about poor judgement, relationships with questionable characters, in fact, characters who have served time in prison. Maybe they will bring this up Tuesday night during the debate.