Friday, October 24, 2008

Penultimate 2008 Election Thoughts

With a week and a half to go before the election, I realized that there isn't enough political media coverage. So I guess I'll have to put on my pundit hat and make up for the slackers who should be doing their jobs.

Poll Vaults

Nearly every poll shows Obama with a fairly comfortable lead, anywhere from 52%-39% to 49%-45%. And then out of nowhere the AP came out with a poll that showed Obama and McCain in a statistical tie, 44%-43%. I thought this had to be fishy. Sure enough, the number of evangelical Christians included in the poll was double the amount of those who voted in the previous election (46% to 23%). Unless there's been a rash of baptisms down by the river, I think it's safe to ignore that AP poll. But if you're a right-wing radio host, you should breathlessly claim that, unlike what the liberal media wants you to believe, the race is a dead heat.

Joe the Plumber

To hear McCain and his cronies speak of it, Joe the Plumber would benefit under McCain's plan. Have you seen the interview between Barack Obama and Joe the Plumber? Joe the Plumber said he was thinking about buying a business, and if his business is successful enough to earn (and report) more than $250K, why would Obama want to single him out to pay higher taxes? Obama then went on to explain his plan in excruciating detail. Joe the Plumber seemed impressed and deferential. In reality, Joe the Plumber will likely continue to earn less than $250K, in which case he'll be better off financially under Obama's plan. And if he does happen to earn (and report) more than $250K, would his tax increase really have a significant enough to affect his business? Why all the Joe the Plumber fuss?

I would say, "I don't get it," but that's not true. I get it. McCain has nothing. Except Ayers! Obama associated with Ayers! Oh, and Obama's a socialist because he believes in the same progressive tax system that's been in place since Woodrow Wilson was president.

Biased Reporting

The mainstream media has been biased against Republicans. Check out the following AP news release:

WASHINGTON (AP) — Freddie Mac secretly paid a Republican consulting firm $2 million to kill legislation that would have regulated and trimmed the mortgage finance giant and its sister company, Fannie Mae, three years before the government took control to prevent their collapse.

Looks bad for Republicans, right? However, if you keep reading the article, you'll realize that Chuck Hagel and Republicans were on the right side of regulating Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae, and the Democrats opposed it. The controversy is that the Republican lobbyist firm got involved and convinced a few Republicans to be on the wrong side -- the Democrats' side.

AM Radio

During the last week, as I've been shuttling the boys to various activities, I tune in to the Seattle station that plays right-wing radio. I've gotten to hear what the likes of Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, and Michael Medved have to say about the political landscape.

Limbaugh's not quite as effective as he was when he was addicted to drugs. He's mailing it in. With Hannity, I get a feeling that after the show, he gets on the phone and berates RNC pols for McCain's lame campaign. "I make $20 million a year! I deserve better than this!" With Medved, I feel like I'm listening to an overly sincere impersonation of Ned Flanders.

By the way, did you know that Freddy and Fanny are the primary cause of our economic woes? It's true! Too many black people were allowed to buy houses, and now they're getting foreclosed on, and it's driving the banks into ruin. No mention of bundled loans or the ideology of deregulation in support of the free market.

Throwing Bush under the Bus

I'm surprised McCain's assessment of Bush hasn't gotten more press:

"We just let things get completely out of hand," McCain said of his own party's rule in the past eight years.

"Spending, the conduct of the war in Iraq for years, growth in the size of government, larger than any time since the Great Society, laying a $10 trillion debt on future generations of America, owing $500 billion to China, obviously, failure to both enforce and modernize the [financial] regulatory agencies...failure to address the issue of climate change seriously," McCain told the Washington Times aboard his campaign plane en route from New Hampshire to Ohio.

Yep, that'll rally the base. Now if he can just explain why he bragged about helping Bush get elected and re-elected, and why he bragged about voting with Bush more than 90% of the time, and how his economic plans and foreign policies are fundamentally different from Bush's, he may gain some traction.

And did you know that Barack Obama pals around with terrorists?