Posted on October 6, 2008 by ed
On the grounds between the two brick colleges, the chitchat between the scion of four-star admirals and the son of a prizefighter turns to their academic travels; both colleges sponsor a trip abroad for young officers to network with military and political leaders in a distant corner of the globe.
“I’m going to the Middle East,” Dramesi says. “Turkey, Kuwait, Lebanon, Iran.”
“Why are you going to the Middle East?” McCain asks, dismissively.
“It’s a place we’re probably going to have some problems,” Dramesi says.
“Why? Where are you going to, John?”
“Oh, I’m going to Rio.”
“What the hell are you going to Rio for?”
McCain, a married father of three, shrugs.
“I got a better chance of getting laid.”
Dramesi, who went on to serve as chief war planner for U.S. Air Forces in Europe and commander of a wing of the Strategic Air Command, was not surprised. “McCain says his life changed while he was in Vietnam, and he is now a different man,” Dramesi says today. “But he’s still the undisciplined, spoiled brat that he was when he went in.”
from Make-Believe Maverick : Rolling Stone.
A very interesting article that paints a very different picture of John McCain from the so called ‘maverick’ that he is so often painted as, further the label of war hero is questioned in what I think is probably a bit of a slanted article, but still full of a lot of valuable information on McCain that I feel isn’t being talked about by a lot of folks. Its a long article, but worth the read. Tim Dickinson Make-Believe Maverick: A closer look at the life and career of John McCain reveals a disturbing record of recklessness and dishonesty in Rolling Stone Available here
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Posted on September 29, 2008 by ed
There was no suspension of his campaign. His surrogates and ads remained on television. Huffington Post bloggers, working the phones, couldn’t find a single McCain campaign office that had gone on hiatus. This “suspension” ruse was an exact replay of McCain’s self-righteous “suspension” of the G.O.P. convention as Hurricane Gustav arrived on Labor Day. “We will put aside our political hats and put on our American hats,” he declared then, solemnly pledging that conventioneers would help those in need. But as anyone in the Twin Cities could see, the assembled put on their party hats instead, piling into the lobbyists’ bacchanals earlier than scheduled, albeit on the down-low.
Op-Ed Columnist – McCain’s Suspension Bridge to Nowhere – Op-Ed – NYTimes.com.
It appears that McCain’s concern over the economy and his insistence that he needed to stop campaigning and return to Washington to right the ship may have been showmanship and politics. (I mean what could McCain seriously do about the economy, who is self professed as ignorant on most economic issues) Despite all that and the fact many presidents have campaigned through much worse, including Lincoln in the Civil War and FDR in WWII McCain may have needed to try and stop the flood gates of a slipping campaign. This is at least according to an Op-Ed (link following the opening quote above) in the NY Times that mentions that “As recently as Tuesday he had not yet even read the two-and-a-half-page bailout proposal first circulated by Hank Paulson last weekend. “I have not had a chance to see it in writing,” he explained.”
Either way, as someone who once really respected McCain (2000 election cycle) I am now amazed at the transformation he has undergone all in the name of getting elected.
Filed under: Economics, Politics | 2 Comments »
Posted on September 20, 2008 by ed
An interesting article in The Nation that follows John McCain’s efforts to keep information concerning POWs that were left behind in Vietnam from reaching the light of day. The information concerns among other issues the fact that the US may have hundreds of POWs behind in Vietnam who were likely eventually executed as both the US and Vietnam chose to ignore the issue. The article mentions many pieces of evidence of the alive POWs including the fact that the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) received more than 1,600 firsthand reports of sightings of live American prisoners and nearly 14,000 secondhand accounts following our exit from Vietnam.
John McCain, who has risen to political prominence on his image as a Vietnam POW war hero, has, inexplicably, worked very hard to hide from the public stunning information about American prisoners in Vietnam who, unlike him, didn’t return home. Throughout his Senate career, McCain has quietly sponsored and pushed into federal law a set of prohibitions that keep the most revealing information about these men buried as classified documents.
See the article in The Nation McCain and the POW Cover-up by Sydney H. Schanberg
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Posted on September 5, 2008 by ed
Worth checking out… if only to hear Karl Roves insanity and Bill ‘Papa Bear’ Orielly act like a fool (again).
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Posted on September 3, 2008 by ed
I can’t say I really ever watch any of the cable news channels unless I am prepared with a trash can to catch my vomit. Every now and then I do catch a good clip that breaks the mold of weak journalism that enforces the idea that we don’t really need 24 hour news channels. One example of actual questioning and failure to buy into the bs answers was shown in an interview with a McCain rep by CNN’s Campbell Brown (some seem to think she was being unfair), but apparently she was ‘too tough’ and now McCain doesn’t want anything to do with CNN and is pulling out of an interview with the ultimate cupcake Larry King.
McCain Retaliates Against CNN For Asking Tough Questions
On a side note, I think that this Sarah Palin choice for VP is going to go down as a horrible decision, and the campaigns idea to defend her as having foreign policy experience and being a tough reformer and a great mom is going to be remembered as a great debacle, if somehow they win and she is a VP I am going to pretty fearful for our country if anything happens to McCain, not that I have anything per se against creationist believers who choose to keep their heads in the sand but I think that this person who chose to go back to work 3 days after she gave birth to a baby and decided that being a VP candidate while raising this baby was a good idea isn’t much for family values, nor is a mother who would put her unmarried pregnant 17 year old daughter through the pain of the national spotlight isn’t who I want running the show either. Ugh…
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Posted on August 19, 2008 by ed
Two Ohio college presidents are among dozens nationwide who are asking lawmakers to consider whether the legal drinking age should be lowered from 21.
College presidents seek to re-examine drinking age – Cleveland Metro News – The Latest Breaking News, Photos and Stories from The Plain Dealer.
I have long thought our nations mandated 21 year old drinking age was wrong for a few reasons, one has to do with the method of implementing by withholding highway funds if states didn’t change to a 21 year old drinking age and also for the problems with binge drinking it creates. Lastly the idea of having something illegal for people who are able to vote, serve in the military etc seems crazy to me. Well apparently a push to rethink the 21 year old age is coming front and center as many prominent college presidents, including Gordon Gee here in Columbus have signed onto to the Amethyst Initative, that was just started:
Launched in July 2008, the Amethyst Initiative is made up of chancellors and presidents of universities and colleges across the United States. These higher education leaders have signed their names to a public statement that the 21 year-old drinking age is not working, and, specifically, that it has created a culture of dangerous binge drinking on their campuses.
The Amethyst Initiative supports informed and unimpeded debate on the 21 year-old drinking age. Amethyst Initiative presidents and chancellors call upon elected officials to weigh all the consequences of current alcohol policies and to invite new ideas on how best to prepare young adults to make responsible decisions about alcohol use.
Filed under: Law, Ohio, Politics | 1 Comment »
Posted on August 17, 2008 by ed
“the best campaign team in the universe ever,” working out of “ ‘The Daily Show’ news-scraper: 117 stories, 73 situation rooms, 26 news tickers,” and promising to bring “you all the news stories — first … before it’s even true.” (Quoting the current ad campaign for the election coverage of the Daily Show) Is Jon Stewart the Most Trusted Man in America? – NYTimes.com.
The NY Times answers the question in the title with a resounding yes. A fairly long article in the NY Times about the the Daily Show (the articles author has nothing but praise for it, which I guess I would agree with). While I got to admit I don’t watch it as much as the Colbert Report these days it is still amazing and I amazed I regretted the leaving of Craig Kilborne from the show (the original show pales in comparison to the show it has become). Anyways, it’s an interesting article and I am not surpised nor do I think its a bad thing that Jon Stewart is ocnsidered one of the most trusted names in news.
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Posted on May 16, 2008 by ed
President Bush has recently been making a lot of dumb statements, some are about his sacrifice of giving up the sport of golf to show solidarity with our troops who are fighting and dying overseas (see story), another unfortunate statement he made was in front of the Knesset in Israel comparing Obama’s pledge (not by name, only by implication) to talk to all countries, including enemies with so the so called ‘Appeasers’ who allowed Hitler a wide birth to do as he pleased as he gathered up chunks of Europe. The problem with the comparison is that Appeasement does not refer to the mere act of talking to someone, it wasn’t Chamberlain’s Government talking to Hitler that defines appeasement, it was giving away half of Czechoslovakia that defines appeasement.
Some radio host who I’ve not heard of (that isn’t saying much, I don’t know conservative talk show hosts or really any radio hosts for the most part) got bashed pretty good by Chris Matthews in an interview for using the term appeasement and having no idea what it was Neville Chamberlain had done wrong.
Also see NY Times story “Bush Assails ‘Appeasement’…“
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Posted on April 30, 2008 by ed
This is money laundering: we borrow money from China and ship it to Saudi Arabia and take a little cut for ourselves as it goes through our gas tanks. What a way to build our country. (Describing the results of putting in a gas tax holiday – resulting in increased consumption)
I just mentioned the gas tax of McCain recently and how dumb it is (see below), and then Hilliary Clinton jumps on the idea as well. Thankfully Obama hasn’t seen fit to give the ridiculous idea his approval as well. These candidates all have top notch economist advisers who apparently get overshadowed by their staffers who want to get dumb votes. Thomas Friedman has a good explanation of why it would be stupid in h is column “Dumb as We Wanna Be” while I don’t always agree with Friedman, he has some good thoughts on globalization and good that can come from it among other ideas, so I try to remember to read his column.
His column then proceeds to explain how we have not made any push into wind and solar power, which you can argue have strong potential both as renewable sources, but maybe right now more importantly in reducing dependency on hostile regimes (won’t have to go to war to keep our wind supply). Yet despite this he recounts the fact that all incentive programs have ceased.
While all the presidential candidates were railing about lost manufacturing jobs in Ohio, no one noticed that America’s premier solar company, First Solar, from Toledo, Ohio, was opening its newest factory in the former East Germany — 540 high-paying engineering jobs — because Germany has created a booming solar market and America has not.
Filed under: Business, Economics, News, Politics | 1 Comment »
Posted on April 17, 2008 by ed
I just heard about this on my drive home today (thankfully while on the subject of gas its only a 5 minute trip), anyway John McCain the presumptive Republican presidential nominee has proposed a summer gas tax holiday, meaning the 18% or so federal gas excise tax would be discontinued for the summer so as to spur on the economy, allow people to travel and generally drive like gas prices were what were used to. This is all well in good if you forget for a moment that the gas tax funds a lot of important road projects (yeah, its not like we couldn’t just ramp up the deficit a bit more and borrow). Secondly the price of gas in the summer going up reflects and increase in demand and the fact that capacity is constrained, such that if the price dropped supply already being extreme would be further challenged by a surge in demand – surely a boon to big oil, but is it really a boon to Americans who would deluding themselves that it is domestic issues that are driving the price up – the reality is high gas prices are here to stay as China and India are now happy to buy barrels of oil even when they are over $100 a barrel. It is the price raising over the summers that will remind people that they need to be responding to the market forces and finding alternative ways to vacation (maybe closer? maybe think about using the greyhound bus long the realm only the realm of the lower classes one might say but no reason to think that everyone needs to take their cars w/ them on vacation.
Marketplace on NPR had a nice piece on why it is a stupid idea and there are a number of articles (including a Fox News article) that rip the idea apart as well, so I am not too worried that it will gain traction and garner a chance of becoming law. That said it is a bit troubling to see a supposedly grounded in economics (at least his advisers were?) candidate turn against what is most certainly a smart tax. While debatable, many would agree that it is best to tax inelastic goods so as to decrease dead weight loss, or secondarily to tax items that you are wishing to discourage consumption of – sin taxes etc., gasoline falls into both camps and I would argue that we don’t tax it enough – as I have mentioned before In re: Skiing in the Emirates.
If we want to lower prices long term we need to reduce demand, not to mention the gain of reducing the oil producing nations grip on the world.
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