Saturday, November 7, 2009

Say what you want about W...

by Smitty (h/t Baldilocks)

...he made the calls and stood tall for the public feedback. I've heard it said that he paid visits to all of the families who lost loved ones as a result of his decisions. You hear little of that, because W was more about action than propaganda.

One is un-confident that the current POTUS will ever grasp this lesson while in office.

Nancy Pelosi: Anti-American Anti-Christ

What kind of subversive commie would schedule a major debate on health care not only during Alabama-LSU, but also during Ohio State-Penn State?

She's evil.

UPDATE: The Satanic Pelosi just caused Alabama to give up a safety and a touchdown. LSU 15, 'Bama 10.

UPDATE II: 'Bama won 24-15, and the House is still debating. What a way to ruin an otherwise wonderful autumn weekend. There's a word for this: WRONG.

Roll, Tide, Roll!

The only deficit I care about right now is that the Crimson Tide trails LSU at halftime, 7-3. Greg McElroy overthrew what would have been a touchdown pass. Then, as the clocked ticked down toward the half, on first-and-10 in LSU territory, McElroy got panicked by a blitz and threw an interception.

Further such failures should not be permitted. In the second half, McElroy's job should consist mainly of handing the ball to Mark Ingram and Trent Richardson. Stick to the ground game and just let that big 'Bama line pound the Tiger defense to smithereens.

McElroy can worry about his Heisman stats next week. Today, Alabama must win.

UPDATE: 11:40 3rd quarter, McElroy 21-yard TD pass. He's redeemed himself. Temporarily. Nancy Pelosi? She's beyond redemption, an enemy of God and man.

UPDATE II: Final score: 'Bama 24-15, but it shouldn't have been that close. I don't know why Coach Saban doesn't establish the running game first in a game like that. Alabama's offensive line could have dominated LSU all day. But a win is a win, I guess.

On the health care vote

New York Times:
The House approved the rule governing debate of the big health care legislation by a vote of 242 to 192, suggesting but not guaranteeing, that Democrats would have the votes to pass the bill itself later on Saturday.
The House adopted the rule by a vote of 242 to 192, with 15 Democrats joining all 177 Republicans in opposition.
Whether this vote on the rule portends prompt approval of the bill is a dubious suggestion. The commendably unanimous opposition of the GOP caucus ought to give Democrats pause.

Without regard to policy, the political question is simple: Whose analysis do you trust? Should Democrats in purple districts trust Nancy Pelosi's assertion that passing this bill will not have disastrous electoral consequences for Democrats in the 2010 midterms? Or should those Democrats trust their GOP rivals, who appear ready to bet that there will be no downside to a "no" vote.

These purple-district Democrats are being asked to take a gamble, and I would not want to be in their shoes. The "no" vote is the safest bet for any Democrat unsure of his re-election chances in 2010. By voting "no," the Democrat "takes the issue away" from his Republican opponent, and will be able to point to his health-care vote as evidence of his bipartisanship, thus deflecting any charge of being a rubber stamp for the "Pelosi agenda."

The willingness of House Republicans to stand unified as The Party of No is likewise a gamble, although a smaller one. As Jennifer Rubin has wisely observed, the opposition party must oppose. Given that the economy will almost certainly still be in recession next fall and that Obama's popularity will likely continue its decline, the prospect of the GOP repeating 1994 will not be diminished by opposing the Democrats' signature legislation.

Let Republicans stand courageously by their "no," and it matters not whether the bill passes. GOP challengers in 2010 can make repealing ObamaCare their No. 1 campaign promise, and any Democrat in a marginal district who votes "yes" will face a ferocious opposition next fall.

RCP now has a Twitter page?

Who knew? At any rate, RCP/Twitter caught this exchange, beginning with my Tweet:
@Ali @Cubachi Reihan Salam Gets Punk-Smacked (I Got TIES Older Than You, Kid!) PLZ Re-Tweet
To which Patrick Ruffini responded:
@rsmccain Douthat and Salam get a lot of things wrong but can we dispense with the reflexive anti-intellectualism? #weneednewbuckleys
To which I subsequently replied:
@PatrickRuffini Anti-elitism is not anti-intellectualism Distinct phenomena, not to be confused #tcot
And furthermore:
@PatrickRuffini And we've got an annoying surfeit of Buckley wannabes #weneednewbuckleys #tcot
All of this, of course, prompted by the original punk-smacking of Salam. As to the accusation of "reflexive anti-intellectualism," I'll have more to say later. But right now my wife's waiting for me at church, where my son performs today with the academy orchestra, and I must go.

Thanks to Matt Crowl, whose Tweet brought the Salam piece to my attention.

Flying My Japanese Republican Allusion

by Smitty

This week's FMJRA, which will still be dominated by the NY-23 support proferred by so many blogs, is instead overshadowed by the Fort Hood killing spree. The title is a reference to Fischersville Mike's excellent historical metaphor for the Doug Hoffman affair.

Fort Hood:
  • South Texian quotes Stacy for pointing out the overarching bad guys.
  • Rhetorican also cheers Stacy's honesty.
  • Predictable Rick Moran refers to bald honesty as 'banality'. Let me see if I can be succinct, Rick: know your audience. Specifically, the jihadists. While we can bandy our abstractions about, theorize endlessly, and wax Shakespearean in our diction, the audience doesn't care fig #1 for such. They see your navel gazing as a giant "Kick me" (or worse, in Fort Hood). In mathematical terms, you're discussing calculus with a culture that, in aggregate, hasn't made it to algebra. This is a generalization, and there are tons of exceptions, but there you have it. Your audience thinks you represent twerpery. In a schoolyard metaphor, you're going to have to take some karate lessons and communicate to your bullies that you've got enough sack to put them on their backs. Your milk money will not be safe until you get you some sack, son.
  • Bob Belvedere rates Stacy as spot-on in his remarks. The Camp of the Saints also picked up a comment thread worth noting.
  • The Daley Gator declares the Political Correctness overview a must-read.
  • Obi's Sister: "Pray for the victims, their families, everyone effected. And our clueless President."
Hoffmania Central:
Obscene I: Departure
Obscene II: EndorsementObscene III: Finale
  • American Power went to bed sans optimism, but did wake up and track us again.
  • Reganite Republican Resistance noted the overall repudiation of BHO.
  • Adrienne's Catholic Corner faced Canolli denial.
  • So it Goes in Shreveport noted Stacy's (fulfilled) wish that the election be decisive, and asks What Does it All Mean?
  • Political Byline noted the stress Stacy was under.
  • Rhetorican liked "We have defeated the DailyKos candidate." Thankfully, there was no evidence of voter fraud.
  • NiceDeb covered all the races.
  • Mark in Spokane caught us in an update.
  • The Classic Liberal offered an overview of Hoffman analysis.
  • DaTech Guy did, as well.
  • Fischersville Mike hat tipped the "Worth the Fight" post.
  • The New Pamphleteers noted the quip about a book offer.
  • Left Coast Rebel rounds up the NY23 posts, with a touching BHO picture, too.
  • SouthTexian earns a quotation for good naval usage:
    Shortly after last year's debacle, I recalled James Lawrence's words of inspiration to the men under his command as he lay dying after a fatal encounter with a British warship in the Atlantic Ocean during the War of 1812: "Don't give up the ship!" Three months later, on September 10, 1813 at the Battle of Lake Erie, Lawrence's friend Oliver Perry led his naval squadron to an improbable victory over the British, flying a banner with that very phrase from his flagship. The American victory at Lake Erie thwarted a planned British invasion of the Ohio River Valley.

    Perry then related the news of his triumph to General William Henry Harrison with this terse message: "We have met the enemy, and they are ours."
  • Yeah. Heck yeah!
  • Rightofcourse asks the 'Now what?' question.
  • Saber Point offers three cheers for Stacy's efforts.
  • WyBlog picked us up:
    saw an interview with Florida Governor Charlie Crist, who is the NRSC choice (over conservative Marco Rubio) to replace Mel Martinez in the Senate next year. Gov. Crist *laughed* when asked about the conservative grassroots uprising in NY-23. I don't think RINO Charlie fully understands the implications of what just happened in upstate New York. By the time he figures it out, it'll be too late.
In a category all his own:
  • The illustrious Bob Belvedere blogging like it's his job at the Camp of the Saints. Thank you, sir.

  • Update to the Hoffman File:
    Valley of the Shadow came through, too:
    The Daily Gator is also worthy of commendation:
    Obi's Sister linked us twice:
    • Noting Stacy's trip and the presence of Fred Thompson, and
    • The Red Dawn after the election. Wolverines!

    Joe Gandleman and Rick Moran:
    Other FMJRA Roundups:
    Miscellaneous Shouts:
    • Honesty in Motion hat tipped the Peggy Noonan piece.
    • American Power rounded up the Jason Shih reporting.
    • Little Miss Attila suspects I've a Neil Young blind spot. Neil is one of those artists whose catalog bespeaks his talent (e.g. Sinatra) yet whose work doesn't grab me. Is it the singing style? Yet I'm a huge Geddy Lee fan. Go figure.
    • Dustbury linked the bit about Environmentalism as a religion.
    • Obi's Sister bequeaths a Quote of the Day, and a hat tip for a cartoon.
    • Bob Belvedere liked the Monique-on-Meghan post:
      Its no fight, Stacy, its a slaughter. Meghan ain't got a chance against a nuclear Monique. Although, I do admit it was enjoyable to watch her Hiroshima Mzz. McCain.

      'Scuse me while I go buy the wife some flowers...
    And that's the FMJRA. Now to pack my trash and head South, towards the airport, and momma's home cookin' tomorrow. Please send updates to Smitty. Any sins of omission are purely accidental. God rest the victims at Fort Hood. May He strengthen their families in this time of horror, and may the Holy Spirit infuse the world with peace. May we meet evil with a firm, calm resolve not to succumb.

    So get her underway and moor her in Alexandria, VA

    by Smitty (h/t Lucianne)

    Old Ironsides' upscale Charlestown neighbors are trying to pull off what British, French and Barbary pirate guns failed to accomplish in more than two centuries - silencing the cannons of the nation's oldest commissioned naval vessel.

    Miffed residents of a posh condo complex have invited the commanding officer of the USS Constitution over for a glass of wine so he can hear for himself that the frigate's twice-daily cannon blasts - a tradition dating to 1798 - are "more disruptive to the neighborhood than you might have imagined."
    What a bunch of ignoble twerps. Charlestown, your pathetic residents deserve neither that wonderful old ship nor the freedom she represents.

    The Navy should open bids for the privilege of having this vessel moored, firing her guns twice a day. Our coasts are dotted with cities far more deserving than these people Charlestown.

    There is no irritation like seeing nominally adult people have zero grasp of the privileges they enjoy.

    Reihan Salam is too young for this
    're-inventing conservatism' gig

    The fact that he co-authored a book with Ross Douthat -- with the ridiculously pretentious subtitle "How Republicans Can Win the Working Class and Save the American Dream" -- would easily suffice to make me skeptical of Reihan Salam's judgment, even if he were 45. That he is both (a) a Harvard grad, and (b) only 29, more or less seals the deal.

    My prejudice against these Best And Brightest types is perhaps misunderstood. I do not automatically despise every young Ivy Leaguer. J.P. Freire graduated from Cornell, and he's a good guy. Helen Rittelmeyer graduated from Yale, and she's even better.

    What I hate, however, is the disrespectful Best And Brightest tendency toward know-it-all-ism, as if high SAT scores and four years at a school where tuition is $40,000 a year entitles them to pole-vault past the dues-paying journeyman career stage and start lecturing everybody else.

    The Internet facilitates such obnoxious precocity. Excuse me for resorting to the when-I-was-your-age argument, but before the Internet, not everyone had access to a national readership. Pixels are free, whereas publishing in print costs money and so, in the pre-digital age, it was a very rare thing for a callow parvenu or arriviste to gain access to the kind of punditry platform that National Review's blog affords Salam:
    As regular readers, I'm a huge fan of Tim Lee and his concept of a bottom-up approach to understanding and improving society. And so I was struck by the final paragraph of Republican consultant Alex Castellanos's New York Times op-ed on the Republican revival . . .
    You can read the whole thing, but what caught my eye was how Salam begins with the trademark know-it-all-ism of the Best And Brightest. Castellanos is even older than me and was working on big-time campaigns when Reihan Salam was still pooping in Pampers.

    Pause to contemplate what's happening here. In a rare reversal of its usual policy, the New York Times gives a Republican a chance to explain how Republicans won an election -- and not merely won it, but did the Godzilla-through-Tokyo stomp to an 18-point landslide. In response, Reihan Salam feels compelled to piss in Castellanos's cornflakes with his snooty oblique criticism, to the effect that Castellanos has offered an imperfect interpretation of McDonnell's Virginia gubernatorial campaign.

    It's a punk move, and betrays the ungodly arrogance that inevitably overtakes young people who've become accustomed to being petted and praised for how precociously clever they are.

    Young people, especially the most promising young people, must be chastised and disciplined if ever they are to develop to their fullest potential. This puerile Douthatian know-it-all tendency toward omniscient punditry -- "I've got a Harvard diploma! I know everything!" -- must be rigorously suppressed.

    Intelligence and wisdom are two different things. There are plenty of bright fools (and I may be one of them) just as there are those people of less stellar aptitude who, by patient toil and study, eventually eclipse the adolescent glory of the Best And Brightest in the same manner that Aesop's tortoise beat the hare.

    Much as I love the hierarchy-flattening effects of the Internet -- affording a guy with a Blogspot platform the chance to whack David Brooks, who certainly needs whacking and needs it badly -- there are some hierarchies that we should hesitate to level. Chief among these is the deference that the young traditionally owe to their elders.

    Remember that I am a father of six, including a 20-year-old daughter and two teenage boys.

    Are my kids bright and promising? You betcha.

    Do I let my kids get away with thinking that their youthful potential entitles them to special treatment and unmerited praise? Hell, no.

    If I don't indulge my own kids in their (arguably hereditary) tendency to think they're God's gift to the world, why should I sit silent while Reihan Salam presumes to lecture Alex Castellanos?

    Shut up and get me a cup of coffee. I got ties older than you, kid.

    Not sure this is accidental

    by Smitty

    Rocketman over at POWIP waxes alliterative at RG's risible remark "makes mendacity meter mark meteoric measurement" that Hitler comparisons to the current administration would be bad, because they were not, you know, everywhere five years ago. Great mildly NSFW graphic.

    Recalling that al Sahaf was known as "Baghdad Bob", Power and Control suggests "White House Bob" for Robert Gibbs.

    It must be noted, however, that Gibbs is no idiot. He stands there and defecates from his mouth to distract attention from even dumber stuff that his boss has done. So, in a modern existentialist lefty collectivist liberal deconstructionist amoral crypto-Marxist dhimmi anti-American plutocratic tool sort of way, he's kind of doing a good job.

    One can imagine Jake Tapper to Gibbs: "Wow, that was an incredibly stupid thing to say. Was that inept, counter-factual phraseology chosen to distract from [gaff X] by the POTUS?"

    No vote on PelosiObamaAintGotNoCare 'til Tuesday?

    by Smitty (h/t Patriot Room)

    Just got this writing in an e from Rep. Marsha Blackburn:

    As I write this, Members are being informed that the health care debate is likely to extend through the weekend. A final vote may not come until Tuesday. The Rules Committee, the body that decides what amendments will and not be considered on H.R. 3962 is meeting now. I am waiting my turn to offer a series of amendments that would make H.R. 3962 a better bill.
    Yep, there's nothing ronngg with that bill that another godforsaken ream or two of why-bother-read-it can't fix.

    At least Aimee Mann is hot:

    Friday, November 6, 2009

    Dr. Coburn's prescription to stop the Pelosi bailout for Abortion Inc.

    Sen. Tom Coburn, the Oklahoma Republican who developed a close friendship with President Obama when they served together in the Senate, is threatening to have the entire health care bill read on the Senate floor. . . .
    Coburn, who has a reputation for using procedural rules to block and delay legislation, has been an outspoken critic of the president’s health care overhaul. He recently told the New York Times: "My mission is to frame this health care debate in terms of the fiscal ruin of this country. . . . I have instructed my staff to clear my schedule for every minute that bill is on the floor."
    (Via Memeorandum.) Meanwhile, how to stop Nancy Pelosi's crazy scheme to rush the ObamaCare bill through a House floor vote on Saturday? Barbara Espinosa links a CNS News article:
    Rep. Bart Stupak (D-Mich.) told on Thursday he has not reached an agreement with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and therefore he and dozens of pro-life Democrats are still poised to kill the House health care bill. Stupak has organized a group of about 40 Democrats who are committed to killing the health care bill if Pelosi (D.-Calif.) does not allow them a straight up-or-down vote on an amendment that would prohibit federal dollars from paying for any part of any health insurance plan that covers abortions. . . .
    Read the rest of that and also Barbara's post at American Freedom. Pro-life groups are especially urging phone calls and e-mails to Congress from their activists who live in House districts represented by Democrats. If Pelosi can enforce discipline in her own caucus, she has enough Democrats to pass ObamaCare without a single Republican vote.

    The fact that ObamaCare would amount to a federal bailout of the abortion industry has not gotten much notice in the MSM, but the pro-lifers are ready to use that as a "wedge" issue, which could really hurt Democrats with Catholic voters in 2010.

    Planned Parenthood is America's largest abortion provider and gets a lot of its funding from taxpayers:
    In April [2008], the annual report of Planned Parenthood Federation of America revealed that the abortion giant had a total income of $1.02 billion -- with reported profits of nearly $115 million. Taxpayers kick in more than $336 million worth of government grants and contracts at both the state and federal levels. That's a third of Planned Parenthood’s budget.
    Planned Parenthood and other pro-abortion groups have been hit hard by the economic meltdown -- seems a lot of their supporters were Bernie Madoff's friends like Jeffrey Picower -- and this is one reason there is such a frantic urgency for the "public option" on the Left.

    Ann Coulter has said that abortion is the sacrament of the Church of Liberalism, and the Democrats desperately fear that they're missing opportunities to kill babies because of the funding shortage caused by the bankruptcy of their Ponzi-scheming friends. So now they want to bankrupt the rest of us to bail out the baby-killers, and trying to do it secretly by sneaking through their plan on a football Saturday:
    [Nancy Pelosi] is scrambling to buy off recalcitrant Democrats on two of the very issues that Rep. Joe Wilson and other House Republicans called out the White House for: abortion and illegal immigrant coverage. The wheeling and dealing is taking place behind closed doors. Once again, the Democrats who promised transparency are breaking their own promise to publish the final bill publicly 72 hours before the vote.
    Fortunately, there are these things called "elections," and something called an "economy," and these two things are having an influence, which may explain why Nancy Pelosi still doesn't have enough Democratic votes to pass ObamaCare. As Pundette observes:
    Some representatives are keenly aware that the jobs they save may be their own. The bad economic news combined with last week's electoral cautionary tales, unresolved hot button issues, and the sheer massiveness and cost of HR 3962 is making too many legislators queasy.
    If it weren't for the encouragement Pelosi gets from unprincipled RINOs (who would vote for nuclear war so long as you called it nuclear "reform" and threw in some pork for their districts) she might have dropped the whole thing months ago.

    UPDATE: According to the Washington Post, they have reached an agreement to vote on the Stupak Amendment, which is expected to pass. Smitty passes along a report that the House may not vote until Tuesday.

    Michelle Malkin: 'Political correctness
    is the handmaiden of terror'

    How true. And I'll risk accusations of Glenn-Beckism by pointing out that "terrorism" and "political correctness" are both legacies of Marxist-Leninist thought.

    Lenin advocated "revolutionary terror," first as a means of attacking the bourgeois regime and then, once the revolutioaries had seized power, as a means of intimidating the population and compelling cooperation with the revolutionary agenda.

    The phrase "politically correct" is also of Marxist-Leninist origin. The concept of "democratic centralism" required that the Bolshevik vanguard arrogate to itself the authority to dictate what was and was not true, what policies should be pursued, etc. Once the Communst leadership had decided what the proper "party line" was, then all dissenters were said to be politically incorrect, and were anathematized as Enemies of the People.

    This was how it came to be that after Stalin after Trotsky -- who had been second only to Lenin in the leadership of the Bolshevik Revolution -- he ordered Trotsky's image airbrushed out of photos of the original revolutionary leadership. And that was only one example of where political correctness led.

    It is amazing to me the degree to which this type of Marxist-Leninist thinking has not merely survived, but thrived despite the collapse of the Soviet Union. And nowhere is this more true -- in a deeply ironic way -- than in the way so many conservatives have forgotten the Soviet origins of modern terrorism. I quote from a 1977 Heritage Foundation study:
    The International Department of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union . . . has been the most important Soviet agency for the support of terrorism. Through this agency, the Soviets established two training schools for terrorists: the Lenin Institute or Institute of Social Studies and the Patrice Lumumba University in Moscow. Both of them regularly train their students -- 300 to 600 at any one time at the Lenin Institute - -in the techniques of "sabotage, terrorism, assassination, and other kinds of clandestine ar:d violent warfare."
    Another Heritage Foundation study from 1984:
    The presence in the U.S. of large numbers of disaffected aliens, many from cultures with traditions of political violence, could be of concern. . . . It is not unreasonable to assume that some of these may be sympathetic to the political goals of some terrorist movements that espouse their national, religious, or ideological beliefs. This minority may provide an audience for terrorist propaganda or a valuable infrastructure for terrorist financial or logistical support.
    Both of those studies were written by the author of The Soviet Strategy of Terror, published in 1981 by the Heritage Foundation. But the politically incorrect Sam Francis has been airbrushed out of conservative history. So it is that we have lost a vital key to understanding the problem of terrorism by "disaffected aliens . . . sympathetic to the political goals of some terrorist movements."

    History, Ancient and Modern
    Certainly, it is possible to see the roots of Islamic terror in the 7th century A.D., beginning with the warrior-prophet Muhammed and continuing with the Muslim conquests that advanced by the sword across Turkey and into Asia, over North Africa, to Spain, and into Europe before finally being halted by the Christian victory over the Ottomans at Vienna in 1683.

    All of that is relevant background, but has little to do with the specific manifestation of terror-jihad that has arisen in the Islamic world since the 1960s. The fanatical anti-American stance of these groups has very particular connection to the Soviet strategy of terror.

    The PLO and Fatah, in particular, received support from a network of communist agents. And the propaganda agents of the Kremlin were also involved. If you'll go back and study it, you'll notice that the Palestinian cause was embraced by the New Left shortly after American student radicals began trekking to Cuba and Eastern Europe for "study."

    The skeptic will point out that Marxism is dogmatically atheist, while Islamic terrorism is devoutly religious. True, but it is likewise true that although Marxism is anti-nationalist, the Soviets exploited nationalist sentiment (e.g., in Vietnam) wherever they felt it might advance their long-term revolutionary goal.

    Terrorism and 'Liberation'
    What is today considered a religious phenomenon -- Islam's jihad against the West -- actually originated with 2oth-century Arab nationalism, of which "Palestinian liberation" was the principle manifestation from the 1960s onward. This was all part of the Soviet agenda of creating satellites via "wars of national liberation."

    Whether it was the Viet Cong or the Sandinistas or the PLO, all such revolutionary outfits shared a common anti-American agenda. The Soviets supported all these groups for the same reason: One "brushfire" war at a time, the U.S. could be deprived of potential allies in its Cold War struggle against the Soviet Union, which claimed to speak on behalf of the victims of American "imperialism."

    When the Ayatollah's Shi'ite revolutionaries in Iran dubbed America "The Great Satan," they were merely expressing in religious terms what the Soviets were proclaiming in secular terms. In the calculus of the Cold War, what was bad for the U.S.A. was good for Moscow, you see. It wasn't until the Soviets tried to impose their will by direct military intervention in Afghanistan that they got a taste of the fanaticism of "liberation" the Kremlin had done so much to foment.

    Of Motives and Murders
    The homicidal rage of "Sudden Jihad Syndrome" -- evidently the motive for Nidal Malik Hassan's murderous rampage -- is the legacy of a history forgotten.

    Objectively, there is no reason that the Islamic world should be infested with violent anti-Americanism. There is no objective reason why Israelis should constantly be plagued by Palestinian terror, nor that Iranians should suffer under the yoke of the mullahs and Ahmadinejad. The resentments which give rise to these phenomena are unacknowledged fruit of the Marxist-Leninist legacy.

    Wherever it is proclaimed that capitalism is exploitation and that the United States is an agent of oppression, then the specific form and rhetoric of "anti-imperialist" violence -- whether religious or secular, ethnic or nationalist -- is just a detail.

    All of these latter-day "revolutionary" movements are, in some sense, mere third-hand replicas of a Bolshevik prototype. The Taliban are an Afghan clone of the Khmer Rouge, Hugo Chavez is the Ceauşescu of Venezuela and Saddam Hussein was a Mesopotamian Stalin. Conservatives ought to understand this, and to say it out loud, no matter how politically incorrect it may be to say it.

    More effort ought to be devoted to persuading the Islamic world that that their religion ought not require the periodic slaughter of Americans, Europeans or Israelis. But before we can persuade them of this, Americans must first persuade ourselves.

    Allen West on the Fort Hood massacre

    Press release from the Iraq hero's congressional campaign:
    Lt. Col. Allen West (Ret) is a former Fort Hood commander, most recently leading troops there in 2007. West has served in both Iraq and Afghanistan and says the horrible tragedy at Fort Hood is proof the enemy is infiltrating our military.
    "This enemy preys on downtrodden soldiers and teaches them extremism will lift them up," West said. "Our soldiers are being brainwashed."
    West served more than 20 years experience in the United States Army and although he is waiting for more information to be revealed on Thursday's tragedy, West is certain the military must look at this broader issue on how to prevent Islamic extremism from penetrating our bases.
    West has worked closely with the investigation of the planned attack on Fort Dix, New Jersey as well as the bombing of a soldier's tent in March 2003 while stationed in Kuwait. Both have been linked to Islamic extremism.
    "The most importantly thing right now is that we objectively assess this situation," West said. "But it is imperative that we take steps to make sure this does not happen again."
    Michelle Malkin has more on the massacre, including the news that the killer had come to the attention of law-enforcement six months earlier.

    Jihad? What jihad?

    Bizarre news from Washington, D.C.

    Sources tell me that a flock of ravens -- hundreds of them -- have taken up roost at 320 First Street, SE. The big black birds are said to be menacing passersby, causing a foul stench with their malodorous droppings, and startling schoolchildren who come to Capitol Hill for field trips.

    The weirdest thing -- and this is a rumor so disturbing that I wouldn't pass it along if it didn't come from a source who has previously been proven reliable -- is that these scary ravens are croaking something that sounds an awful lot like, "Guy! Guy! Guy! "

    Furthermore, congressional staffers tell me they noticed in late July that some of these ravens built a nest in the window of 2233 Rayburn House Office Building, and that when the eggs recently hatched, the baby birds were heard to chirp, "Pete! Pete! Pete!"

    'Investigators have grown more skeptical that Bill Sparkman died at the hands of someone angry at the federal government'

    Skepticism, wow! Who would have thought that the Associated Press might know a skeptic or two?
    Investigators probing the death of a Kentucky census worker found hanging from a tree with the word "fed" scrawled on his chest increasingly doubt he was killed because of his government job and are pursuing the possibility he committed suicide, law enforcement officials told The Associated Press. . . .
    There were no defensive wounds on Sparkman's body, and while his hands were bound with duct-tape, they were still somewhat mobile, suggesting he could have manipulated the rope, the officials said. . . .
    The strange case attracted national attention when it first came to light, prompting worries that it may be a sign of increased anger toward the federal government in the first year of Barack Obama's presidency. . . .
    Read the whole thing. (Hat tip: Dan Riehl.) Since we've now got official permission from the Associated Press to start asking skeptical questions, I say we begin with this one:
    • For whom did the case "prompt worries" other than AP reporters Devlin Barrett and Jeffrey McMurray?
    The original URL is no longer active for the Sept. 23 AP article -- also by Barrett and McMurray -- that went a long way toward "prompting worries" in this regard, but it happens that I quoted it in my Hot Air Green Room report:
    The FBI is investigating whether anti-government sentiment led to the hanging death of a U.S. Census worker near a Kentucky cemetery. A law enforcement official told The Associated Press the word “fed” was scrawled on the dead man's chest.
    After quoting that tendentious lede, I went pointed out how the AP article described the source:
    The article said this official "was not authorized to discuss the case and requested anonymity," and went on to cite David Breyer, a spokesman in the FBI's Louisville, Ky., office as saying that "the bureau is helping state police with the case."
    That article had a dateline from Washington, D.C., where Barrett is based, so you can bet money that it was Barrett's unauthorized source at the Justice Department -- and not McMurray's sources in Kentucky -- who leaked the tidbit about "fed" scrawled on the chest and the "anti-government sentiment" motive.

    OK, so here's the deal with anonymous sources: The source who gives a reporter bad information automatically forfeits his right to anonymity. Barrett's source misled him, so that the entire premise of that Sept. 23 article was bogus.

    C'mon, Barrett: Name your source.

    High time we made an example of some of these less-than-reliable sources, I say. And if you won't name your source, I can think of a few people on Capitol Hill -- hello, Mitch McConnell -- who might be willing to give me a quote or two for a story about how there needs to be an congressional investigation of leaks from unauthorized sources at DOJ.

    Because you see, Devlin Barrett, I'm thinking this anonymous source of yours isn't FBI or regular DOJ bureaucracy. No, sir. My hunch is you got this tip from one of Barack Obama's political hacks over at Justice, which just happened to provide the White House with a story that fit their narrative arc:
    These Tea Party people and folks asking health-care questions at town-hall meetings -- they're dangerous! Kooks! Wingnuts! Extremists! Glenn Beck and Michelle Bachmann have got the wool-hats whipped up into a lynch-mob frenzy!
    Name your DOJ source, Barrett. Expose the culprit. Turn on the light, so we can watch that cockroach scurry away under the refrigerator.

    Meanwhile, somebody send out a search party and try to find Andrew Sullivan's credibility.

    Thursday, November 5, 2009

    Another Belgian-American goes berserk

    A madman inspired by Vlaams Belang and incited to violence by right-wing extremists . . . Oh, wait. No.


    Couldn't have said it better myself, Pamela. A jihadi psychiatrist? Yeah, there's your irony, Dr. Freud.

    Excuse the dark sarcasm. Having spent the past week in upstate New York with Ali Akbar -- yes, that's his real name, and he's a Southern Baptist from Texas -- covering a campaign repeatedly maligned as "radical" and "extremist," there is something especially bitter for me in this ugly reminder that there are still people who want to kill us all, just because we're Americans.

    The people who want to kill you are not Tea Party protesters or accountants from Saranac Lake, N.Y. They're not Kentucky populists or Belgian radicals.

    Anyone who wants to distract you from real dangers by telling you to fear this week's pet bogeyman -- global warming! creationists! Ron Paul! -- is not your friend. They are fools and liars who cannot be trusted. They are objectively evil.

    Hats off to Ott!

    by Smitty

    Trifecta features Dana Loesch and Stephen Green quizzing Scott Ott about his Lehigh County Executive camapign. He's ~1,000 votes out, and may or may not wind up in a recount.

    "The emperor has no clothes," says Ott, who's unsure about future political plans.

    (Mrs. Smitty has already told me I can't do more than support other candidates, which will no doubt depress Young 4 Eyes.)

    Shatner tries, fails to make Johnston sound coherent

    by Smitty (h/t Alan Colmes)

    In that vein, though possibly more obscure, is French and Saunders working out on Kylie Minogue, "I Should be So Lucky":

    Robert Reich: Hey, that last shot of smack didn't kill us. How 'bout we reload the syringe for another round of love in vein?

    by Smitty (PuffHo)

    Right now, there is only one buyer left: the government. The only way to get jobs back right now is for the federal government to spend even more on the roads and bridges and schools and parks and public transport and everything else we need. Make up for the cutbacks at the state level. And in this way put Americans to work. We did it during the Depression. It was called the WPA. Now yes, I know. Our government is already deep in debt. But let me tell you something. When 1 in 6 Americans is unemployed or underemployed, this is no time to worry about the debt. When I was a small boy, my father told me that I and my kids and their grandkids would be paying down the debt created by Franklin D. Roosevelt during the Depression and WWII. I didn't even know what a debt was. That kept me up at night. My father was right about a lot of things, but he was wrong about this. America paid down FDR's debt in the 1950s, when American's went back to work. When the economy was growing again. When our incomes grew, too. We paid taxes, and in a few years that debt had shrunk to almost nothing, as a proportion of the economy.
    Let's ref the National Debt Road trip, Mr. Reich:

    WWII kicks in around 0:46, and Truman is done around 1:00. Hell breaks loose under Reagan, as this fiction that "debt is OK as long as it's small, proportional to the economy" really took on popularity.

    Now, if we want to equate Reagan with FDR in terms of WWII/Cold War deficit spending, then, after perestroika/glastnost under Bush41, Bill Clinton (and that Newt dude?) should have been in Truman mode.

    Ah, but we continued to party like rock stars. Mr. Reich, the time to establish your credentials for financial responsibility and paying down the debt would have been when you were a member of Clinton's cabinet. So now you just sound like another spinner, beavering away on the emperor's new clothes. You go, dude. Make the cloth nice and thick; he's been looking rather un-insulated of late.

    Meanwhile, sober members of the crowd who understand that Bernie Madoff was hors d'œuvre for the real theft occurring on this Administration and Congress's watch have had enough. The Constitutional power to manage inter-State commerce is not a mandate to run the entire economy. Precedent over last century be damned: the States need to elect governors who can:
    • encourage free enterprise, and
    • hoist the international gesture for collectivist nitwits like you, Mr. Reich.
    Suggested soundtrack for Mr. Reich's ideas is Alice in Chains, "Would?"

    NY23 Farewell: Final deadline in the Buffalo airport; final wisdom to come

    The National Desk is about to head south, toward home, where I'm awaited by a wife, six kids, two dogs and innumerable cats who haven't seen me in a week. I just filed 1,400 words for the December print edition of The American Spectator -- subscribe now! -- and three weeks of campaign-trail frenzy are over.

    Just another hour or so to decompress and pack up the rented Nissan, and I'll be rolling down the highway, dodging the state police radar traps. Heaven knows what the rental agency will say when they see the (minor, superficial) damage to the Nissan caused by my low-speed collision with a deer when I made the mistake of slowing down in Tupper Lake.

    That was six days ago. Seems like forever. Please hit the tip jar. And pray.

    UPDATE: OK, I've now sent the photos and the editors are talking about how many pages the article will run in the December issue -- subscribe now! -- but it was impossible to summarize in a mere 1,400 words what has happened in NY23. The people involved in the Hoffman campaign were all aware that they were working to develop a new model for connecting Republican candidates to the conservative grassroots.

    As I was lashing together my article, it seemed to me that the tipping-point of the Hoffmania momentum shift was Oct. 16, when the Siena poll showed Hoffman surging while Scozzafava had fallen behind the Democrat. That was the same day Michelle Malkin's column called Scozzafava "An ACORN-Friendly, Big Labor-Backing, Tax-and-Spend Radical in GOP Clothing."

    Two weeks later, the final Siena poll confirmed what the Hoffman people had known for some time: Dede was heading for a weak third-place finish. So the RINO quit and repaid the GOP Establishment by endorsing Democrat Bill Owens. Exposing RINOs as untrustworthy creatures was worth whatever damage might be suffered by having Owens in Congress -- until next year, when the freshman Democrat will face a re-energized GOP grassroots in NY23.

    Go back and read my "Memo to the Grassroots." I didn't know it at the time, but that Hot Air Green Room post was written the same day that Yates Walker decided to hire on as manager of the Plattsburgh office of the Hoffman campaign. Yates was just one of several people who helped turn the Hoffman campaign into such a stunning dynamo of grassroots energy.

    Yesterday morning in Saranac Lake, Hoffman spokesman Rob Ryan -- whose insights appeared here more than once, attributed to a "campaign source" -- told me to make sure to say some kind words about the Hoffman staffers. The campaign managers, Dan Tripp and Matt Moran, were in charge of organizing and directing the campaign.

    Pollster John McLaughlin and press aide Sandy Caligiore did important work, as did HQ press man Sean Kennedy and logistics operative Sean Mahoney. Tripp's key aides O'Brien Murray and Jake Menges were important, as was Rick Ahearn, who learned to do advance work with Ronald Reagan. Bob Adney ran the Watertown office, while local Tea Party activists Jill Bernstone and Sil Johnson ran the operations in Madison and Oswego counties.

    Just got off the phone with Dan Tripp, who would no doubt laugh at the idiocy of Rachel Maddow:

    This wasn't about a bunch of extremists purging a moderate. To begin with, Dede Scozzafava is no "moderate" and the people who made the Hoffman campaign such a dynamo were no more "extremist" than that dangerous right-winger, Ronald Reagan.

    Dan Tripp says the basic problem is that the GOP establishment has gotten used to outsourcing campaign work to high-priced consultants, to the neglect of old-fashioned "boots on the ground" volunteer organizing. And who can disagree? The Republican Party has some analogs of perennial Democratic loser Bob Shrum -- the overpaid "expert" who knows everything except how to win elections -- and these professional losers have been collecting fat fees for failure.

    Doug Hoffman was willing to stand up and fight, and by doing so, helped awaken the Ordinary American to the possibility of what can be done if people will take on an active role as citizens, becoming involved with the political process and refusing to let the "experts" boss them around.

    As Yates Walker told me over breakfast Wednesday morning at the Blue Moon Cafe on Main Street in Saranac Lake: "I couldn't be prouder." So I'm heading south with my head held high, and with hope in my heart.

    The NY23 National Desk is now closed, and the next stop is home. Thanks for your prayers.


    Dear James Wolcott: Blow me

    Perhaps "blow me" is not the kind of commentary that would make me popular with Vanity Fair readers, who are used to such lofty intellectual matter as Gisele Bundchen nude. But dig the cluelessness of the world's most pretentious dropout from Frostburg (Md.) State University:
    Nobody nowhere no way no how is going to buy a "book" by defeated tea bagger Doug Hoffman, who will now recede into the woodwork of irrelevancy to spend more time with his hanging ferns. . . .
    If Sarah Palin's emancipation proclamation is being shoveled out to the rabid faithful as a loss leader, a cheap giveaway, how much additional landfill would be needed to accommodate the return copies of the political testament of an obscure guy whose loss handed the Congressional seat to a Democrat for the first time since dinosaurs walked with Jesus? . . .
    Wolcott is recycling second-hand memes poached from the liberal blogosphere. He has nothing original to say, and throws less traffic than Sadly No or Crooks and Liars. He is a has-been pop-culture critic whose employment by Graydon Carter seems to be chiefly due to Wolcott's marriage to a Vanity Fair contributing editor.

    Wolcott knows as much about politics as such a person might be expected to know. Wolcott seems incapable of doing any actual reporting. There was never any chance of him trundling his obese corpus up to the Adirondacks to cover this election. He will, however, sneer at any journalist who actually works for a living.

    So while I've logged thousands of miles and hundreds of hours covering NY23 -- and have spent a few years studying the conservative book market from a perspective of economic self-interest -- I know nothing about nothing, and James Wolcott knows everything.

    Excuse me for wasting more than two words on Wolcott. I'm on deadline, and the distraction was annoying.

    Why CNN sucks

    Greetings from the Buffalo Niagra International Airport. Just put Ali Akbar on his plane back home and, with deadline looming for the December issue of The American Spectator -- subscribe now -- the National Desk has been set up at the airport bar for a few hours.

    I'm being forced to watch CNN, where the host of "American Morning" just finished interrogating (not interviewing) Rep. Michelle Bachmann. CNN's John Roberts did his assigned job, reading from DNC talking points and forcing Bachmann to respond point-by-point to the liberal argument -- which, however, was not presented as a liberal argument, but rather as "some critics say" or, simply, as facts.

    At one point, Roberts raked Bachmann over the coals for calling ObamaCare "socialized medicine." That is to say, he was spinning for the Democrats, who know that "socialized medicine" has negative connotations compared to "health care reform."

    This rhetorical battle is, however, only about politics, and has nothing to do with the policy at dispute. In terms of policy -- what will it cost taxpayers? how will it affect delivery of health care services? et cetera -- it doesn't matter if you call it Super Duper Rainbows And Unicorns Sexy Delicious Health Care Paradise. The policy is the policy is the policy.

    John Roberts made no acknowledgment of this underlying reality. His job was to pretend to be objective while striving to depict Bachman and all other opponents of ObamaCare as extremist fringe kooks: "Socialized medicine! How dare you call it socialized medicine!" And he did that dishonest work with transparent enthusiasm.

    This segment was followed, a few minutes later, by a puff-piece profile of Valerie Jarrett, who was given the kind of tough, aggressive, critical treatment that the Jonas Brothers get from the editors of Tiger Beat.

    It is CNN's pseudo-objectivity -- a liberal perspective presented as The Way It Is -- that annoys the informed viewer.

    The White House has waged a propaganda campaign against Fox News (which frankly presents a conservative perspective as The Way It Is) while Fox's two cable rivals (both liberal) slide into Nielsen irrelevance, unable to attract a mass audience. And the geniuses at CNN can't seem to figure out why this is.

    I'll give Newt a 'C'

    by Smitty (via Hot Air)

    Allah Pundit links Newt eating some crow on Hannity. Allah throws on an interesting spin:
    His endorsement was always strategic, to support Republican leaders at the local level and dissuade third-party challenges next year.
    Well, that's all very tactical. I appreciate that Newt feels himself a sports coach, looking to score the points required to win the game.

    However, if the game itself is more of a problem than the other team, then I wonder if Newt's approach has much strategic value.

    Keep drifting to starboard, Newt: you'll get there. Also, that dream coalition will materialize. Attempts to dissuade third-party challenges are likely to hurt more than they help.

    Wednesday, November 4, 2009

    Carrie Prejean is Joe the Plumber?

    by Smitty

    According to Monique Stewart, yes.

    Reading the post, HotMES seems to be coming down heavily based upon scant (and maybe not even scantily-clad) evidence. The court of public opinion doesn't really support fair trials, does it?

    I don't think Carrie can achieve full-on Plumber-hood. Joe still has the best on-line summary of BHO. Carrie's chief crime is one shared with BHO and, most recently, the Mainiacs.

    Hopefully, Carrie graces CPAC with her presence and we get to find out if she's sincere like one hopes or in it for the money, as HotMES apparently suspects.

    Was 'Divide and Conquer' Among Alinsky's Rules?

    by Smitty

    Megan McArdle's post about social conservatives in the GOP caught the eye. Here is part of a comment on her site:
    And few things get [NY-23 residents] angrier than how the Republican party has been taken over by "the Texans." This is shorthand for the southern-oriented, Protestant-oriented religious right. They hate that crowd more than any Democrat could. Betrayal by your own side always hurts the worst.
    Hm. I'm confident that if Governor Perry really had the whole GOP hog-tied, we'd be moving towards an Article V cram-down that would have Princess Pelosi's makeup running in the Tammy Faye Bakker fashion.

    Megan responds to the comment less figuratively than I to the notion, however:
    Social conservatism just isn't the main issue there. Abortion will be legal no matter what happens on the federal level, and a lot of local Republicans are perfectly fine with that. Evolution will be taught in the schools. What animates Republicans in the upstate is a deep economic conservatism. Their social issues are confined to frowning at drug use, excess drinking, and people who won't work to take care of their families. (And in rural Western New York, there's no question about who can't work, and who won't . . . it is not an anonymous sort of place.)
    As long as social issues dominate the Republican Party, they will continue losing their north--I had a lot of relatives who at least considered voting for Obama. Ironically, I wonder if the tea parties won't help bring the two wings of the Republican party together: guns and lower government spending are the two things all members can agree on. But if the south wants to keep its northern Republicans--and the congressional seats that come with them--it's going to have to back off trying to make the northern party look like a miniature version of itself.
    To amplify Megan and beat the Federalist drum, the social issues are not what should drive the national GOP. Sure, I'll agree with social conservatives all day long on the usual issues. The reason you Do Not Want legislation about marriage and abortion at the Federal level is that it's as evil as the 16th Amendment. It short circuits the chain of command for the Federal government to concern itself with sexuality, just as it does for the IRS to have eminent domain over your wallet.

    While I'd probably never want to visit, a State should have all of the wherewithal to turn itself into Gomorrah. You may agree that XX already has. Trying to use the GOP as a means to enact legislation to force XX to your line or mine is wrongheaded. The Evangelicals, of all people, ought to know this. See Romans 7:7-12.

    Politics is secular, and we have to be pluralistic. While the Sermon on the Mount is a personal favorite, a political treatise it is not. (And it tapers off drastically as a foreign policy platform.) People remain responsible for their own actions. It is not on me if the unborn are murdered. I'm comfortable opposing having tax dollars spent to fund the murder, but not with the Federal government controlling the individual behavior.

    Thus, while I'm personally as socially conservative as they come, it's my hope that the socons relax a little bit, and realize that they may be doing Alinsky's dirty work, to a degree. Be socons at the State level, and focus on the fiscal issues for national politics. 'Hang together, or hang separately'. Cooperating is both more in keeping with the spirit of the Constitution, and more likely to succeed in preserving the country in the face of a collectivist takeover.

    Because the fruit of their faith is surely the apple whose core is an orgy of worms in a knot of rot.


    by Smitty

    (for Fischersville Mike)

    Not any day another
    naif advances dumb assertions
    naturally, although destined, as
    now all dimwitted attempts
    need arrive, damaged and
    neglected, at DELETE's attention.

    Message from NY23

    Ali Akbar and I just dropped by the luxurious Best Western Carriage House Inn in Watertown, N.Y., on our way to Buffalo. This morning, we went by Hoffman HQ in Saranac Lake, where "Dougie" -- as his childhood friends call him -- was thanking supporters who dropped in. The phone kept ringing as well-wishers called in from everywhere to encourage him to keep up the fight. One call came from Silver City, N.M., another from an American working in Japan as an English teacher.

    Hoffman said one of his neighbors told him today that this amazing campaign was "target practice." One of his old friends stopped by and mentioned the yard signs she had distributed. "Keep 'em for next year," Hoffman said.

    While one staffer had told me immediately after the concession speech that Hoffman had been "crushed" by the narrow defeat, the candidate was feeling decidedly more encouraged by the time his wife, Carol, came by to take him to lunch (their first lunch together in three months, he said).

    Hoffman said Tuesday evening, when it became clear that he'd fallen 4,000 votes short of victory, he was disappointed not so much for himself, but on behalf of all the many people who had lent their support to his campaign. Wednesday morning, however, dozens of those supporters had already contacted him -- both in person, and through the Hoffman campaign Web site -- to tell him how proud they were of his effort, and to urge him to keep fighting.

    What does it mean? We'll let Michelle Malkin answer that question for now.

    Ali's flight leaves Buffalo at 7 p.m., and we'll have to drive hard to get to the airport in time. But I just felt I needed to take a minute to pass along this message:


    UPDATE (Smitty): Fred Thompson's winners and losers mentions Hoffman.

    UPDATE II (Smitty): American Glob embeds Rush Limbaugh, and here is some more Fred Thompson analysis.

    Continuing the Dede Honesty Trend

    by Smitty (h/t Samizdata)

    Following the revelation of Dede's True Blue colors (NTTAWWT) comes word in the Telegraph that "Climate change belief given same legal status as religion" in a court case where some PHB's inner child was discriminated against for tree-huggery:
    An executive has won the right to sue his employer on the basis that he was unfairly dismissed for his green views after a judge ruled that environmentalism had the same weight in law as religious and philosophical beliefs.
    When coupled with some of the latest nitwittery from the UN on the defamation of religion (modulo Judaism and Christianity), we can foresee a future in which Al Gore will damn all of our wallets in court to the tune of copious dollars. Your billfold and mine subjugated to endless torture to pay for our environmental blasphemies.

    If this trend of telling it like it is continues, I predict TOTUS will have our president openly curse Adam Smith by the 2010 elections.

    No backing down

    From my American Spectator article today:
    Even while the Hoffman campaign's early-evening "cautious optimism" gave way to concern -- with staffers huddling in the "war room" here at the Hotel Saranac -- one official of New York's Conservative Party was already in a celebratory mood, laughing as he yelled into his cell phone: "Guess who will not be representing the 23rd District? Dede Scozzafava!"
    The liberal Republican Scozzafava suspended her campaign four days before Election Day, but still got about 7,000 votes -- a number greater than the margin of victory for the Democrat she endorsed, Bill Owens. Her defeat was victory enough for some conservatives, on a night when the GOP swept the off-off-year gubernatorial elections in Virginia and New Jersey. And the candidate who drove Scozzafava out of the race struck a defiant tone in conceding his narrow loss to Owens.
    "This one was worth the fight . . . And this is only one fight in the battle," said Hoffman . . .
    Read the rest. Also read Michelle Malkin's post about her determination to keep fighting.

    Like I said, "This isn't over."

    It's on: Erick Erickson vs. Ryan Ellis

    Americans for Tax Reform's Ryan Ellis has decided that the problem with the conservative movement is . . . conservatives.

    Erick Erickson whacks him upside the head.

    Whack him again, Erick!

    Prediction: Hoffmania will continue

    OK, so Doug Hoffman fell 4,000 votes short of a House seat. But ask yourself this: What will Regnery pay him as a book advance?

    The basic idea of the Hoffman campaign -- an ordinary citizen taking a wild gamble on a political campaign, waging an against-all-odds underdog battle against the Establishment -- is nothing less than the epitome of the American Dream.

    Hell's bells, it's a Disney movie starring Rick Moranis!

    The peculiar circumstances of the NY23 special election put Hoffman in the glare of the national spotlight and, given his admitted lack of political "rock star" credentials, he did a lot better than any of the experts might have expected. As he said in his concession speech:
    "This one was worth the fight. And it’s only one fight in the battle, and we have to keep fighting."
    It was Hoffman's willingness to fight that made him an inspirational figure, and Erick Erickson says the fight must go on.

    If the Republican bosses think they're going to pick another candidate in NY23 for 2010, they'd better think again. The grassroots conservatives -- the Tea Party people, the pro-lifers, the Club for Growth, Fred and Jeri Thompson, Sarah Palin -- who backed Doug Hoffman aren't going to forget his courageous example.

    By the way, some campaign sources tell me that Mr. Hoffman was very emotionally bruised by Tuesday night's result. In recent days, he had come to believe -- like a lot of us believed -- that he was about to win an upset victory. If you'd like to send Mr. Hoffman a note of encouragement, please go to the contact" page at his Web site.

    This isn't over.


    Recalling Ronald Reagan

    by Smitty

    From the FaceBook page that drives legislation:
    The race for New York's 23rd District is not over, just postponed until 2010. The issues of this election have always centered on the economy – on the need for fiscal restraint, smaller government, and policies that encourage jobs. In 2010, these issues will be even more crucial to the electorate. I commend Doug Hoffman and all the other under-dog candidates who have the courage to put themselves out there and run against the odds.

    To the tireless grassroots patriots who worked so hard in that race and to future citizen-candidates like Doug, please remember Reagan’s words of encouragement after his defeat in 1976:

    "The cause goes on. Don't get cynical because look at yourselves and what you were willing to do, and recognize that there are millions and millions of Americans out there that want what you want, that want it to be that way, that want it to be a shining city on a hill."
    Recall that, had nothing been done, an even more leftist candidate than Owens may have taken the one-year seat. Owens wins, but understands that, if he's running in 2010, he can't ignore the Hoffman voters, any more than Bill Clinton to ignore fiscal conservatives who voted Perot.

    The Conservative Party and the Tea Party are undeniably a force with which to reckon. This blog recommends a strong buy on stock in all cotton undergarment manufacturers. After these election results, the Left will be stocking up, that is certain.

    Keep fighting the good fight people, and the country may yet be restored.

    P.S. Obviously, the Hoffman campaign needed to trick BHO into campaigning for Owens...

    Tuesday, November 3, 2009

    NY23 Election Results HQ; UPDATE:
    Team Hoffman predicts 'close' victory; UPDATE II: Numbers in the war room; UPDATE III: HOFFMAN CONCEDES

    12:35 a.m. WED. 12/4: "This one was worth the fight," Doug Hoffman said in his concession speech. "This is only one fight in the battle."

    Now all the pundits -- who, as Michelle Malkin observes, claimed that tonight didn't mean anything -- will tell us what it means. Nice work if you can get it.

    I'm on deadline for the American Spectator, so not a complete wrap-up just yet, but when Hoffman's speech was over, one of his supporters said two words that struck me: "Twelve months."

    Exactly. And only four months until . . .

    Well, it's cold in upstate New York in November. But it's warm in Florida in August. Hit the tip jar.


    11:32 p.m.: Neither the Owens campaign nor the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee is declaring victory. As Ryan told me shortly after 11 p.m., "You don't see the Owens people jumping for joy. . . . They know the same thing we know" -- namely the uncertainty of unreported precincts and uncounted absentee ballots.

    11:25 p.m.: "I think it's very premature," Hoffman campaign spokesman Rob Ryan said of the report that NBC News had called the race for Democrat Owens. "There's a buncn of big question marks out there." With many thousands of military absentee ballots and key precincts not reporting, the Hoffman campaign is ready for a long night.

    11:20 p.m.: Hoffman campaign sources report that only 50 percent of the votes in Oswego County have been counted.

    11:15 p.m: NBC has reportedly crawled out on a limb and called Democrat Bill Owens a winner. Beware of that.

    10:51 p.m.: Clinton County is more than 75% counted, and the numbers there project well for Hoffman. A campaign source just said, "We're doing good in Oneida and St. Lawrence [counties], but we don't know if that's being reflect in the numbers" being reported on TV.

    The top command of the Hoffman campaign is in a private banquet room dubbed "the war room," where they are crunching the numbers precinct by precinct. It's already been a longer night than most expected and guests at the party upstairs are getting restless.

    Problems are reported with a total of 11 voting machines (4 in St. Lawrence County and 7 in Fulton County). With 63% of precincts reporting, Owens leads 49% to Hoffman's 44%, a margin of about 3,400 votes, with 5% for Dede Scozzafava. Many military absentee ballots (Fort Drum is in the district) are yet to be counted.

    10:29 p.m.: Reports of voting machine malfunctions in St. Lawrence and Fulton Counties. National Review is a bit worried. The Hoffman campaign is still optimistic, but this long delay is stressful. As the percentage of returns increases an early lead for Democrat Bill Owens is shrinking. Whereas Owens led by 8 points with 21% reporting, it's now 5 points with 39% reporting. Stay tuned.

    10:11 p.m.: At this point, with about 20% of precincts reporting, it appears that Democrat Bill Owens is returning very strong numbers -- indeed, suspiciously strong numbers -- in Dede Scozzafava's home territory of Jefferson County.

    10:05 p.m.: There have been reports of problems with voting machines in the district. However, early returns from Clinton County -- home territory for Democrat Bill Owens -- indicate a Hoffman victory. Total turnout for Republicans was stronger than for Democrats in that key county.

    In a conference call with bloggers, Susan B. Anthony List President Marjorie Dannenfelser just described the apparent conservative surge as "an organic movement that is rising up." SBA list put more than 200 volunteers into the 23rd District and distributed more than 100,000 pieces of literature on behalf of the Hoffman campaign.

    9:20 p.m.: Watertown office of Hoffman campaign reports "strong" Republican turnout. GOP turnout in Plattsburgh also reported strong, lower turnout for Democrats.

    9:15 p.m.: Hoffman press aide Sandy Caligiore: "We will win a close election." Conservative Party official Jim Kelly said he expects Hoffman to win a 42%-45 plurality in the three-way race. Remember that, even though Dede Scozzafava suspended her campaign on Sunday, her name is still on the ballot.

    9 p.m.: Polls just closed. The Watertown (N.Y.) Daily Times is planning to livestream the vote count. Will update frequently with the vote count, related news, and reports here from Hoffman campaign headquarters in Saranac Lake.

    NY23: 'cautiously optimistic'

    That quote is from Doug Hoffman campaign manager Dan Tripp, who says, "I know it's a cliche."

    I spoke to Dan just now in the ballroom of the historic Hotel Saranac, about 15 minutes before the polls close here in New York. Of the eagerly awaited results, Dan says that Jefferson, Clinton, Madison and Oswego counties will decide the election.

    Press corps pinup idol John McCormack is now here. Shhh! Don't tell anyone.

    Finally VA-8 Gets Some Love

    by Smitty

    I've bemoaned the lack of attention given NOVA's finest piece of work.

    Today all that changed. The Track-A-'Crat came through, noting Jim Moran's equating the GOP with the Taliban.

    I'm not sure yet who the GOP will put on the ticket against this joker. Unfortunately, lack of blood circulation in the legislative district has left a distinctly blue color about the collective face.

    Jim "Taliban" Moran. I think we may have a winner here. Let's see if we can make that the phrase the unruly hair in his coiffure.

    NY23: 'Revolution'

    At the American Spectator:
    Doug Hoffman campaign spokesman Rob Ryan just said the off-year congressional election in this sprawling upstate district represents a political "revolution."
    "People have just stepped up to the plate," Ryan said, describing the surge of grassroots volunteer support for Hoffamn. "They're sick and tired of politics as usual. They're sick and tired of the culture of corruption in Washington. They're sick and tired of sending all their money to the IRS." . . .
    Read the rest.

    UPDATE: Drew M. of Ace of Spades HQ is in town! Somebody tell him to find me at the hotel restaurant. We'll have a mini-Ace-o-Palooza.

    NY23: A Nation Awaits the Historic Result

    The media have descended in droves on the Hotel Saranac -- built in 1927 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places -- which will be the scene of tonight's anticipated Doug Hoffman victory party. While the TV hotshots are setting up in the ballroom upstairs, we bloggers have taken over the A.P. Smith Restaurant next to the lobby. Kerry Picket of The Washington Times and Hooah Mac of Red State are here.

    Dave Weigel of the Washington Independent just showed up. He says he's guessing Hoffman to win by 11%-12%. Two tables away from the National Desk, Jimmy Vielkind of New York Observer and Liz Benjamin of the New York Daily News are chatting with Jeremy Peters from the New York Times. Just a few pictures to set the scene:

    Note the rich wood paneling and chandeliers in the historic banquet room where I'll be poaching free buffet food later tonight. Life is good.

    A CNN reporter prepares for her historic broadcast.

    A hotel maintenance man removes a historic chandelier to prepare for the historic occasion.

    The National Desk, 7 p.m., in the historic A.P. Smith Restaurant.