A conservatory of Ldotter blogs.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

All you mouth-breathing yokels. . .

. . .out there in the hinterlands ought to be painfully aware of how Barack Obama feels about you now. He certainly made no bones about it when he was speaking to the "Marin County hot-tubbers" in San Francisco, recently:
"And it's not surprising then [you] get bitter, [you] cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren't like [you] or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain [your] frustrations."

Anyone remember my post a while back that said Obama's undoing will be his arrogance and duplicity? Well, there it is on full display.

Last night, he tried a do-over in Terre Haute, but came up very short:

No amount of dissembling is going to undo the damage that Obama has done to himself with his condescending caricature of middle America as a repository of angry, bitter, reactionary xenophobes who reflexively seek refuge in God and guns when confronted with a world they're incapable of understanding. His attempt to repackage his original sentiment as an expression of solidarity simply fails to address the fact that its underlying premise was that middle America really doesn't get what it's all about; that it is a vast collection of Pavlovian dogs, conditioned to respond to change in a way that has no relation to reality.

His attempt to exploit anti-Washington sentiment as a means of minimizing the impact of his deeply elitist dismissal of middle American values is, at its core, a confirmation of the very premise he's seeking to evade. It's as if Obama were saying, "Oh, oh! They're lashing out again. Better wave a red flag and distract them. Blaming Washington politicians is always a crowd pleaser."

Friday, April 11, 2008

I have a little techie bleg. . .

. . .for anyone out there who might be knowledgeable on blog feeds. I've been looking around the web for a way to get my posts from this blog to propagate over to my MySpace blog. This isn't of the utmost importance, or anything. It just seems like it would be a good idea. I'm not all that crazy about MySpace's blog setup, so I don't want to spend a whole lot of time working on it. But, having it sitting there doing nothing just seems like a waste of a decent resource, crappily set up as it may be.

Any ideas? I've seen a widget that you can use for it, but it just doesn't appear to be what I'm looking for. I would simply like to have my posts automatically appear over at the other blog, rather than have some widget sitting over at the side all by itself, serving no real function.

Many thanks to anyone who can help me.

One of the perks. . .

. . .of blogging is that from time to time, some wonderful benefactor bestows upon you a wonderful gift. Well, one of those gifts arrived for me yesterday in a small box from Mystic Monk coffee. And, let me tell you, if you are at all a fan of the bean, this stuff is for you. I recommend it unreservedly.

I got both the Colombian medium roast and some of the chocolate mint flavored coffee. Both are absolutely delicious. They're perfectly roasted without the slightest hint of bitterness. Being a huge fan of Colombian coffee, I've tried several brands, and Mystic Monk beats them all. As for the chocolate mint, it's a very smooth coffee -- like the Colombian medium roast, it is utterly devoid of bitterness, and the mint is subtle. It's great with just a touch of creamer, but just between you and me, I can't wait to get some Bailey's Irish Cream to put in it.

The Anchoress has posted her raves about Mystic Monk a few times, so if you'd like a second opinion, you can check out her site. You'll find that we both have come to the same conclusion. I don't know what their secret is, but those monks know how to roast beans. I can't recommend it highly enough.

Welcome to all visitors from TheAnchoress, and many thanks to The Anchoress for the link! It's always nice to share a link over a nice cup of coffee.

If you look to your right. . .

. . .over at the top of my sidebar, you'll see the new addition to my blog that I was up all night working on. Be aware that, if you're not a big fan of hard rock and/or heavy metal, you're not going to find much on there to like. But, at the same time, also be aware that I spent a good amount of time -- into the wee hours of the morning -- working on it in order to make it as unobtrusive as possible. That meant quite a bit of code tinkering for resizing and such. But, in the end, I think it was worth it.

It's the same player and playlist that I have on my MySpace and Facebook pages, so it's consistent throughout all my networking dealie-o's. I kind of like the uniformity. And, it's nice to have my own music to listen to while I'm blogging, even if no one else listens to it. I'll be changing up playlists from time to time, building different lists for the different types of music I enjoy. So, if you're not a metalhead, not to fear: it's not always going to be "that loud crap" you hate.

But, if you do like that kind of music, then by all means. . .enjoy!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

The posting is light. . .

. . .today because I'm still doing some tweaks on my MySpace page. I've added a music player and playlist, which is great. Unfortunately, it automatically plays when you open the page and I'm trying to figure out how to stop that from happening. You see, I have a taste for loud rock music, and some folks might be a tad jarred when they open my page only to be greeted by Pantera.

Yeah, they're pretty loud.

So, anyway, my apologies for the lack of blogging today. I'll be back in fighting trim when I have this thing worked out.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

For an abject Clinton flak. . .

. . .Lanny Davis can be a remarkably stand-up guy. I recall a point during the President's first White House run that he came to George W. Bush's defense when his integrity was called into question, though I can't remember precisely what the issue was. (Perhaps someone can refresh my memory?) Davis even defended Sen. McCain against the famously scurrilous charges raised in the New York Times not so long ago.

Today, he's doing everything he can to warn Democrats about what's to come should Barack Obama secure their nomination. He will be roundly criticized, as he has already been, for pointing it out. But, the fact remains that Jeremiah Wright is a problem for the Democrats that, despite their wishful thinking to the contrary, won't go away unless Obama makes a much more forceful denunciation of him, and addresses some very tough questions for which there are no good answers. Davis makes a very valid point in the following graph.
Attacking the motives of those who feel this discomfort about Senator Obama's response or nonresponse to Reverend Wright's comments is not just unfair and wrong. It also misses the important electoral point about winning the general election in November: This issue is not going away. If many loyal, progressive Democrats remain troubled by this issue, then there must be even more unease among key swing voters – soft "Reagan Democrats," independents and moderate Republicans – who will decide the 2008 election.

There is apparently a congenital defect in the vision of some Dem-symp talking heads that precludes them from recognizing an albatross when it is dressed in a dashiki. Somehow, Lanny Davis has managed to overcome this disability. Perhaps he had corrective surgery at some point before Hillary quit paying her staff's health insurance bills.

Whatever the case, Davis knows what he's talking about here. Unfortunately for the Democrats, many who suffer the aforementioned visual disability also lack the ability to detect sounds that fall within the frequency range of common sense.

McCain's new ad. . .

. . .is drawing raves from me, but not Yuval Levin at The Corner.

Levin comes away with the sense that the ad is somehow "downbeat" -- something I didn't pick up at all. I think the ad is actually a brilliant drawing of the contrast between the McCain campaign and those of his Democrat rivals. I think that people who see the ad and absorb the content will come away with the sense that, while the Obama campaign is preaching a "New Kind of Politics" from the pulpit on Sunday, on Monday through Saturday, it's engaging in the same old slash-and-burn politics it so disingenuously decries.

As usual, it's beautifully produced and filled with evocative images that hearken back to Ronald Reagan's "Morning in America" campaign.

I think Levin is thinking about the McCain ad in terms of its drawing a direct contrast with his opponent -- on the assumption that his opponent is Barack Obama. I think where he misses the point is that McCain, at this point, actually has two opponents with whom to draw a contrast, and that they're making it very easy for him to do it by virtue of the nature of the campaigns they're running against one another, and McCain.

On one side, you have two campaigns ripping at one another's flesh and flailing out at their common opponent in often haphazard fashion -- one of which purports be the very antithesis of what it actually is. On the other side, you have a man who has vowed to run a respectful campaign based on service to a cause greater than oneself. This ad brings these ideas into focus.

I don't see the defensiveness that Mr. Levin sees in this ad. I see it as a lesson in both civics and civility in the midst of a campaign where his opponents seem to hold both in contempt.

Watch the video and see what you think.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Captain Ed at Hot Air. . .

. . .raises a point about something that has been needling at me for a while now, but that I just hadn't been able to crystallize.
Also, as I wrote last week, I’d rather the candidates quit asking for apologies for offenses against themselves and instead used the offenses as legitimate fodder for campaigning. McCain’s no victim in American politics, and demands for apologies send the wrong message. Let Rockefeller’s words stand in testament as to what leading Democrats really think about our military.

I couldn't agree more. I've come to the conclusion that apology demands are almost counterproductive, and that the best course of action in response to the sort of breathtakingly insipid statements uttered by Obama surrogates of late is to simply say that they are an affront to decent Americans, a stain on the political process, and an outright slur against loyal American service members who are sacrificing everything in response to their nation's call to duty, and if Obama wants to be associated with those kinds of sentiments, then he should be prepared for the ugly consequences such words bring about.

Senator Wreck-a-fella. . .

. . .has sunk to a level of outright cravenness unseen in quite some time with his attack on John McCain as some sort of blood lust driven marauder.
"McCain was a fighter pilot, who dropped laser-guided missiles from 35,000 feet. He was long gone when they hit. What happened when they [the missiles] get to the ground? He doesn't know. You have to care about the lives of people. McCain never gets into those issues."

These are the words of a mainstream Democrat, elected by a statewide vote -- not some bedroom community of tragically hip pseudo-radicals with too much time on their hands. I have a hard time believing that this kind of thing will go over well back home in West Virginia, which has trended rightward over the past few elections cycles.

But, more important than the electoral consequences of this statement is what it reveals about how Rockefeller views the service of our troops. If he can say these kinds of things about a man who suffered unimaginable torture at the hands of his captors on the principle that he was honor-bound to endure -- as no man should ever have to -- so that those who were captured before him were entitled to gain their freedom before he could, what must he think about the men serving in Iraq and Afghanistan right now?

Rockefeller is an Obama supporter. He attacked John McCain's personal integrity -- his fitness as a human being -- in order to benefit Barack Obama in an election. If Barack Obama doesn't come out and forcefully denounce Sen. Rockefeller and his words, it will lay bare the entire pretense of his "New Kind of Politics" as nothing but a cynical ploy just as Sen. Rockefeller has laid bare the truth that is the cowardly scumbag of a politician that he is.

And, in considering what Rockefeller said in the context of Obama's warm-up act, Ed Schultz, who recently called John McCain a "warmonger", you have to wonder whether or not there is a pattern of intentional character assassination of the lowest sort. Obama fired an aide for calling his primary opponent a "monster". Did Jay Rockefeller do anything less in his characterization of Sen. McCain?

UPDATE: Altered text for readability.

How many more times. . .

. . .is Barack Obama going to sit in front of a camera with America watching and listening and lie straight to our faces?

It's becoming pretty clear that, even as Obama promises a "New Kind of Politics", he is cut from the same cloth as the greatest practitioner of old-style Democrat politics of our time, Bill Clinton. And, to top it off, he does it with an even greater flair for glib deceitfulness than Old Scratch himself -- shamelessly and repeatedly.
“[McCain] wants to continue this war in Iraq maybe for another 100 years.” -- Fox News Embeds Blog, 4/5/08

“And when it comes to foreign policy, John McCain says he wants to fight a hundred year war, a hundred years he says, as long as it takes.” -- Chicago Tribune’s “The Swamp” Blog, 2/9/08

“[W]e are bogged down in a war that John McCain now suggests might go on for another 100 years ...” -- MSNBC Democrat Presidential Candidate Debate, Cleveland, OH, 2/26/08 (at 5:39 point)

Arrogance and duplicity. Those two words will haunt Barack Obama.

Monday, April 07, 2008

There is no Hope. . .

. . .in the South for Obama.

H/T - Jonathan Martin @ Politico.

Keep an eye on the faces. . .

. . .of Obama and Clinton tomorrow, when Gen. Petraeus gives his testimony, and see if his words don't elicit a disappointed reaction. Hillary will still be living with the stupidity that caused her to, in so many words, call the general a liar by claiming that it would require a "willing suspension of disbelief" in order for her to lend any weight to his remarks. Expect Obama to spend his entire time making a statement, rather than engaging in the kind of question-and-answer session one would expect of a statesman interacting with the highest official in theater responsible for the exercise of our military force on the ground.

Expect them both to cling to the moronic mantra that we are seeing no political progress as a result of our efforts there. But, before then, be sure to familiarize yourself with this post from Rich Lowry, over at The Corner. It is truly a gem, and puts the Dems' endless defeatism in perspective.

Clinging to idiocy. . .

. . .is apparently a virtue among the Democrat electorate. I can't otherwise fathom why both Clinton and Obama would persist in brandishing an irresponsible withdrawal of forces from Iraq as a selling point for their campaigns. It's pretty clear that Americans are beginning to become more optimistic about the outcome of our current strategy there, and as the months stretch on into November, it seems highly likely that we will experience continued and growing success as more Iraqi troops are able to contribute to the nation's security.

And why else would both candidates continue to perpetuate the outright deception that John McCain plans to occupy Iraq for the next 100 years -- particularly when Obama himself has allowed for the presence of a 60,000 - 80,000-troop "strike force" with no set date for withdrawal? Could it be that they simply have no clue whatsoever when it comes to the use of military force abroad? The longer they continue on the course they've set for themselves, the more inescapable that conclusion becomes.

The point they most heavily rely on in their implacable opposition to our continued presence in Iraq appears to be the "lack of political progress" among the varying factions there. Leaving alone the fact that there has been measurable progress on the political front, it leads one to wonder just how they expected any progress to be achieved in the midst of an insurgency largely composed of foreign entities working hand-in-glove with Muqtada al-Sadr -- a power mad cleric bent on fomenting sectarian discord for the sake of his own political influence.

The very fact that al-Sadr has twice called for an armistice in the latest offensives conducted by largely domestic Iraqi forces should indicate to even the most jaundiced eye that there is a potential for a great deal of political reconciliation, so long as America exercises patience and works with those domestic forces to impose the will of the current government. Until the Maliki government can establish the sense that it is capable of imposing its will, there's no reason for the sources of discord to change its ways. So, why the rush to cut off our support of the current government just as it is making measurable strides toward the ultimate goal of a free, stable, and democratic Iraq?

The answer is as disturbing as it is simple: the most left-wing elements among the Democrats have established themselves as the base, and nothing short of precipitous withdrawal, regardless of the conditions on the ground, will be acceptable. Any talk of reconsideration from any candidate will lead to howls of protest and accusations of betrayal -- something neither candidate can afford with the nomination yet to be decided.

But, now that both candidates have made the withdrawal of troops a centerpiece of their candidacies, and as long as they continue to attack John McCain for his counseling of prudence and resistance to predetermined withdrawal dates, one has to wonder how they plan to sell themselves to a public that, by the time their nomination is decided, will have seen considerable success in a war that they may not like, but one that they are also not too keen on losing.

When it comes to healthcare. . .

. . .it seems the best people to ask about solutions would be doctors, no? Well, a new national study of physicians did just that, and they came to a fairly decisive conclusion that John McCain's plans for reform stand a much better chance of being implemented than those of either Clinton or Obama.

When Americans are faced with a choice of healthcare reform plans, and are given all the necessary information, wouldn't it make sense to point out the realistic chances of any given plan to actually be put into place? If so, the choice becomes, "Do I want to reform the system, or not?" If Americans decide they'd really rather just hear of bitching and moaning from politicians who will never get anything done, they'll support either Clinton or Obama. However, if, as I suspect is the case, Americans want someone to actually accomplish something in the way of expanding access to healthcare, they'll support John McCain.

A pound of flesh extracted. . .

. . .Michelle Malkin congratulates all real Americans for caring enough about the sovereignty of their nation to get worked into a letter-writing lather about an ad in a Mexican magazine. Quoth Malkin:
You know what has been heartening the past two days as reaction to the Absolut Reconquista ad continues to pour in? The fact that so many of you still take our sovereignty seriously and are willing to give voice to your concerns without apologizing for it.

Apparently, enough of these very serious people peppered V&S Absolut Spirits with angry emails that they felt compelled to issue a "genuine and sincere apology".
We apologize
Posted Sunday, April 06, 2008, 7:38:29 PM

During the weekend we have received several comments on the ad published in Mexico. We acknowledge the reactions and debate and want to apologize for the concerns this ad caused. We are truly sorry and understand that the ad has offended several persons. This was not our intention. The ad has been withdrawn as of Friday April 4th and will not be used in the future.

In no way was the ad meant to offend or disparage, or advocate an altering of borders, lend support to any anti-American sentiment, or to reflect immigration issues.

To ensure that we avoid future similar mistakes, we are adjusting our internal advertising approval process for ads that are developed in local markets.

This is a genuine and sincere apology,

By Paula Eriksson, VP Corporate Communications, V&S Absolut Spirits

I'd say that's pretty good work. I daresay it'll be a long time before any European booze peddler threatens our sovereignty again.

The duplicitous Senator. . .

. . .Barack Obama's campaign is having a little trouble getting out from under its own rhetoric these days. It seems the McCain campaign is slowly but surely forcing him to concede that he's been deceitful in his characterization of Sen. McCain's words.

Patrick Hynes sent along a link to this post over at Politico.com.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

My apologies. . .

. . .for the light blogging today. I've been busy setting up a MySpace and a Facebook page to go along with my Twitter. It seemed like a good way to while away a Sunday/laundry day. Besides, it's been a while since I took a day off from blogging.

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