Wednesday, November 01, 2006

The Man Of Consequence: Why George W. Bush Still Matters

I have written over and over again, that the Democrats have things wrong. They are on the wrong side of the War on Terrorism, wrong on Immigration Reform, wrong on Social Security Reform, wrong about the Economy, wrong about Taxes, wrong about so many things. But the Democrats are correct, to some degree, about the fact that President George W. Bush matters, even in mid-term elections.

John Hawkins at Right Wing News took a poll of “right of center bloggers”, and asked them to select their top six choices from a list of purported reasons why the GOP is having difficulties this election. As always, John’s polls are informative, but I did not much like his list. A number of strong reasons – obvious to me at least – were not available as choices. As someone who lives near Sugar Land, I find it fitting to demand a write-in vote. The biggest single reason the Republicans are having difficulties this election, is because for some inane reason they started listening to the Democrats’ spin and abandoned the President. This plays right into an old strategy, but one which appears to still work – Divide and Conquer.

It’s simple, really – most Americans think about President Bush when they consider the Republican plan for how to handle Iraq, meet the threat from Terrorism, reform how taxes are assessed and collected, how we should choose federal judges and Supreme Court justices, and what cultures will be encouraged and protected in the United States. No other elected official comes close to such a complete alignment with a party position. No Democrat has established any sort of policy positions on the issues Americans repeatedly confirm they care about, and even the other leading Republicans only voice a part of the plan. President Bush is the Republican Party, so far as the people are concerned. Small wonder then, that the Democrats wanted to separate every Republican candidate from the President, because that is the one thing which would weaken Republicans more than anything else. No one is required to agree with the President on every issue, nor are you required to support him on every issue. But if you are a Republican, then you have to understand that President George W. Bush is your party’s voice and standard for all intents and purposes. The Democrats fear Dubya, and rightly so. And any Republican who plans on winning the fights which matter, will stand by their President.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

A Horror Story

Washington DC, Friday November 10 2006 (AP) – Democrats are still celebrating the takeover of both chambers of Congress in Tuesday’s mid-term elections, striking a serious blow to Republicans and the influence of now-lame-duck President George W. Bush.

Shaking his head, DNC Chairman Howard Dean laughed at his good fortune. “We had terrible turnout”, admitted the head of the Democrats’ national committee, “but we lucked out because the Republicans stayed home, too.

“It would have been very easy for the Republicans to have saved control of at least one chamber, but they sat on their butts and that worked for us

Baghdad, Iraq Monday February 5 2007 (AP) – Ordered by Congress to pull out of Iraq as soon as possible, U.S. troops began the first of a series of scaled pull-outs, removing 25,000 troops from positions deemed by Congress to be “too risky”. In related news, sectarian violence surged in Fallujah, Sadr City, and along the border with Saudi Arabia, as insurgents took heart in the American retreat. Over a thousand people are believed to have died in the new surge in violence over the past ten days.

Washington DC, Monday March 12 2007 (AP) – The U.S. Economy continued its slide for the third straight month, with Unemployment and the Consumer Price index both rising again. Economists say confidence in the economy has weakened due to fears of tax increases and a Congress which is hostile to the average person.

Beijing, Wednesday March 14 2007 (AP) – Iran and China have signed a landmark cooperation and defense treaty, announced today in a ceremony in Tienamen Square. Analysts believe that the weakened U.S. position in Asian and the Middle East made the deal more attractive than It would have been in past years, especially since Senate Foreign Relations committee chairman Joseph Biden has publicly warned that Congress would not approve “any more adventures” overseas for the foreseeable future.

Washington DC, Monday May 21 2007 (AP) – The Senate today slapped a stinging rebuke to the Bush Administration, by demanding a complete review and “overhaul” to intelligence-gathering procedures. In a move unprecedented since the Church Committee hearings of the 1970s, the Senate announced that the proceedings would be aired live and in public. Concerns about protecting “critical sources and methods” would be endangered by the publicity were brushed aside as “spooks trying to cover their behinds”.

The Hague, June 8 2007 (AP) – The International Court of Justice today indicted sixteen U.S. Marines on charges of abusing the human rights of over one hundred suspected members of Al Qaeda, by detaining Iranian nationals and incarcerating them without due process under the terms of Sharia. The case is widely viewed as a test case to determine the new American mood with regard to nations like Iran and North Korea. “It appears that the Congress has finally tired of allowing Bush to treat sovereign nations like beggars” commented an Iranian diplomat through Al-Jazeera. Veterans groups in the U.S. protested that turning over American troops to be tried in a foreign court was unconscionable, but a spokesman for the State Department explained that the new bill by Congress, which overrode President Bush’s veto, requires the United States comply with international law “in all respects”, including abiding by rulings from the ICJ.

Washington DC, Friday June 29 2007 (AP) – Just before the Fourth of July break, Congress dropped a bombshell on the taxpayer, increasing the employer and employee portion of SSI taxes to 22.7% each, with a warning that further increases may be necessary. Explaining the hike, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said “look, no one likes raising taxes, but the only way to fix this problem is to put more money into the system.”

Baghdad, Friday July 20 2007 (AP) – U.S. troops are exiting Iraq as quickly as possible, promised General Peter Schoomaker, Army Chief of Staff, but casualties are an inevitable price paid by “quitting before the job is finished”. U.S. forces have lost over a thousand casualties, including more than six hundred deaths, since the February decision by Congress to pull out of Iraq. Analysts say the country is effectively in civil war at this time, “total chaos in places” as confidence in the nascent democracy was shattered by the sudden decision by the United States to go home.

Islamabad, Monday July 23 2007 (AP) – In a stunning move, the government of Pakistan has cut relations with the United States, opened talks with Iran regarding regional issues, and opened a consulate for Al Qaeda. Officials for President Musharraf explained, “we are merely adjusting to the reality of new conditions.”

Washington DC, Monday, July 27 2007 (AP) – The Fairness Doctrine is back, and bigger than ever. Both chambers of Congress passed a measure which will not only require radio stations and cable television networks to provide “equal time and resources” to contrasting points of view, but for the first time also requires that political opinion websites, often called political “blogs”, be registered their financing reported, and agree to abide by “fair and reasonable” standards. Questions remain regarding enforcement, but one official who spoke on condition of anonymity said, “we can make sure extreme voices don’t get out of hand”.

Is it all just a bad dream? If you sit on your butt or don’t vote Republican, maybe not.

Happy Halloween!


Monday, October 30, 2006

You Know What They Say About Assumptions

Today is Monday, which apparently is Lame Excuse Day in the corridors of Real Clear Politics and Spin. I say this, because even as the RCP guys have backtracked a little bit on their weasel post of October 20, these guys are still saying, in the same sort of voice we hear from Couric, Pelosi, and other minions of Leftist Lying, that the race is a foregone conclusion. RCP is still, quite without merit, claiming that “the lack of any released polling is a sign that this race is almost definitely a Democratic pickup”. I must repeat the obvious, that the absence of information must never be taken as evidence for any assertion, because by definition you cannot derive something from nothing. You would hardly be satisfied with a doctor who did no tests, and used the lack of tests as a basis for his diagnosis. You would hardly be satisfied with a mechanic who didn’t bother to check out your car before telling you what he thought was wrong. Even those old mystic types who ripped out goat entrails to see the future, at least based their predictions on something. There are only two kinds of people who would deliberately try to sell the idea that no data must mean ‘x’. RCP is either getting really, really lazy, or else they are flat being dishonest. Even as they continue to spin this race as “over”, the story they link to in their most recent update calls the race “a statistical tie”.

The Houston Chronicle, not known for supporting Republicans, even admitted that when Zogby’s poll specifically named the candidates running for TX-22, “Sekula-Gibbs drew 52 percent support in that situation, with Lampson holding at 35 percent.”

President Bush is visiting Sugar Land today, and since he claimed 64% of TX-22’s vote in 2004, this can only help Sekula-Gibbs.

Why was there no polling information for so long? The obvious must once again be observed:

[] Through the first couple months of 2006, the widespread belief was that DeLay would run for re-election, and was seen as a very strong incumbent. I note that RCP never bothered to consider that the absence of polling then would have been an “indicator” that DeLay had already wrapped up another term, if we applied RCP’s methodology. The fact that DeLay is not planning for his next term, rather effectively disproves that fable RCP has been selling that ‘no polling’ tells us anything.

[] Ronnie Earle’s vendetta against DeLay was years in the making, and had several starts and stops and spurts along the way. As a result, DeLay ran in the primaries because the GOP wanted a consistent message sent to the district. As for Lampson, he did not even open his office to campaign in TX-22 until April 8th. The pollsters waited for the dust to settle before they could poll on the race, since there was a lot of doubt about who was running.

[] Shelley Sekula-Gibbs was not even running until September. This means that the polls had to decide whether – and how – to poll TX-22, since the nature of the write-in requirement made this election unique.

In total then, the lack of polling was clearly not due to anyone locking up the race, but rather the result of a series of events which raised questions about who was running, and how polls should address the decision. It is simply false to claim that Lampson has effectively won this race, and patently dishonest to manipulate a lack of data to claim a result not in evidence. In actual fact, there is no question at all that if this race were a normal head-to-head race with both Lampson and Sekula-Gibbs on the ticket for their respective parties, Sekula-Gibbs would enjoy a tremendous lead, and notions that the Democrats could hope to take this seat would be a poor joke. The only reason that Lampson is in the position he is, is the result of Democrat dirty tricks. I mention this, because most people outside the District do not understand the underlying facts of this race:

[] Lampson has never lived in Sugar Land, but comes from Beaumont. His eligibility for the Congressional race is not unlike Hillary Clinton’s “residency” which allowed her to run for Senator of New York. Sugar Land Texas, however, is very distinctly not New York, and such tricks do not sit well with many voters.

[] TX-22 is strongly Republican and Conservative. It has been described as “leaning” Republican, but that is very much an understatement.

[] Sekula-Gibbs is very well known in Sugar Land. Her candidacy to run for TX-22 comes from not only her residency there, but also her reputation, which is largely positive.

With those facts in mind, it would seem strange that this should be a race at all, but the Donks played their card well, even if it is a filthy card. Republicans who vote “straight-ticket” not only will not have a vote registered for Sekula-Gibbs, but would not even have a chance to write-in her name, because the Donks got the courts to rule both that DeLay could not run, but that no one else could be put in as a Republican on the ballot, so there is no Republican slot on that race. The real question then, is how many Republicans will understand how to write-in Sekula-Gibbs in this election. The 25% “undecided” response in the Zogby poll, it appears, comes from not only people who are undecided, but also include those who are unsure how to write-in Sekula-Gibbs.

From the available information, garnered from local news reports and the internal data from Zogby’s poll, it would seem reasonable to say that Lampson will collect almost all of the Democrat vote in TX-22. That sounds great, but as I said, that being a largely Republican district means that Lampson is looking to collect between 25 and 35 percent of the voter base there, depending on Donk turnout. As for Sekula-Gibbs, she is actually quite popular, but will lose a chunk of the Republican vote from people who fail to properly write her in. Her share of the voter base starts at 52 percent, but loses 15-20 points due to the write-in complication. Figuring in Republican turnout as well, her basic numbers are between 22 and 42 percent of the voter base. Adding those two together, plus the GOP voters who fail to write in Sekula-Gibbs, and that leaves about 17 percent of truly undecided voters. It is possible for anything from a 47% Lampson 28% Sekula-Gibbs result, to a 54% Sekula-Gibbs 31% Lampson result. The only honest answer here is that

A) This race is very much still undecided

B) Turnout will be critical for each side

C) Calling this a sure Democrat takeover is both dishonest and foolish.

The chief reason I mention this, is because so many on the Left and in the Media are calling TX-22 as an example of some kind of Donkey Tide, and come November 7 there will be a lot of those ‘experts’ trying to explain how their lies and distortions were either honest mistakes, or somehow not as bad as they will look in the light of actual results.

I repeat my earlier conclusion: I have no complaint against a partisan choosing to cheer for their side, but when someone who purports to be objective plays a trick like this, I will not hesitate to call them out. For whatever reason, RCP has abandoned honest evaluation of the evidence in favor of a disguised partisanship, and this conduct is clearly unethical.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

School Update

For those interested;

Completed Quiz on Chapter 10 in Accounting, got 100%, brings class average up to a nudge above 83% (Assignment 4 of 6 submitted but no grade yet);

Took Economics Quiz on Chapters 7, 10, and 11 today, scored 95%, class average at 99%;

Term Paper due for Business & Society Monday October 30 at 8 AM.

Quiz on Chapter 6 in Accounting this week.

Assignment 5 in Accounting due this Saturday.

Term Paper in Economics due November 14.

Just in case you wondered why I am not as chatty as usual.

Oh, and for the record Time Warner Roadrunner High-Speed Internet is a lying, bumbling, collection of con men and incompetents. More than half of Houston, they say, is unable to access their wonderful service for the second straight day, at least 34 hours and counting by my clock. What's even more telling about the "expertise" of these people is that they do not know what, precisely, is wrong, they will not say what they are doing to fix the problem, they have no idea when it will befixed, and they resent the hell out of customers being at all displeased by any of these things.

I am on dial-up right now. Don't expect any glowing reviews about Total Wripoff Roadkill Won't-Work Internet anytime soon.