Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Awesome

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  • Paul Williams,

    See, I'm Italian and we have a proven remedy for that, so I can assure you that whilst writing that I had a hand firmly planted on my... Which accounts for the slow typing.

    Do we all need to do likewise to counter the hex... I've got lots of work on is all?

    Sydney • Since Nov 2006 • 2273 posts Report Reply

  • matthewbuchanan,

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 163 posts Report Reply

  • dc_red,

    most polls are unable to account for documented the surge in voter registration among democrats, or the likely surge among young people and minorities

    Didn't we hear this last time with Kerry? And wasn't there in fact at least a modest surge in voter registration and turnout in 04?

    Net result: 4 more years.

    Oil Patch, Alberta • Since Nov 2006 • 706 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Boden,

    The exit polls in 2004, which were mysteriously vaporised at some point during election day, actually had Kerry winning.

    And let's take a close look at what happened in Ohio...

    http://www.harpers.org/archive/2005/08/0080696

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 94 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    free trade

    Yup, I'll grant you that. This is one area where McCain has acted and voted consistently.

    campaign finance reform

    Ya rly. I think this demonstrated McCain's level of integrity on financing in this campaign.

    McCain actually abandoned a major campaign finance reform bill this year (another Republican had to take over as co-sponsor). And Russ Feingold, the other original sponsor, has endorsed Obama.

    As have the major campaign finance pressure groups:

    Craig Holman, campaign-finance lobbyist for Public Citizen, agrees with Donnelly’s upbeat assessment. "Obama has really taken the lead when it’s come to campaign finance and lobbying and ethics reform," Holman said, noting that Obama, with Feingold, got through a more stringent lobbying and ethics reform law than one originally proposed by McCain.

    So, saying McCain is the stronger candidate on reform is, like, crazy.

    the surge,

    Sure, if you believe McCain's absurd claim that "the surge" started the "Anbar awakening" and all. But even if he's right on that one, it seems a little odd to ignore all the times he's been wrong about Iraq. Or, for that matter, hasn't been able to find the sodding place on a map.

    This Boston Globe column rounds up some 2008 McCain bloopers:

    But, if foreign policy experience is Senator McCain's strong point, let's hope he chooses Senator Joe Lieberman to be his running mate.

    It was only a few months ago, in Jordan, when Lieberman had to whisper in McCain's ear to correct McCain's statement that it is common knowledge that the Iranians are training Al Qaeda fighters and sending them back into Iraq. After Lieberman "reminded" McCain that Iran is Shia and Al Qaeda is Sunni, McCain retracted his emphatic statement.

    Other McCain foreign policy errors indicate either ignorance or forgetfulness.

    McCain recently referred to the Iraq-Pakistan border although there is no such border, and referred to Czechoslovakia, which has been out of existence for 15 years. Lieberman might have whispered corrections in McCain's ear if he'd been there.

    Clearly, McCain has his finger on the pulse. Do you really want a President who would stand up and make stupid errors like that?

    strength in deomcracy, not "peace in our time " appeasement.

    Yeah, because the US so sent troops into Georgia, didn't it?

    compare that with a tech policy written by his campaign fundraisers. big deal for barry

    The guy is a past president of the Harverd Law Review. He consulted personally with Lawrence Lessig. You know what? I think he probably has a better handle on this stuff than the guy who can't use email.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22825 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    Didn't we hear this last time with Kerry? And wasn't there in fact at least a modest surge in voter registration and turnout in 04?

    We don't know what young people, African Americans and Latinos will do, but we know that Republican voter registration is down across the country, and Democratic voter registration is up by significant numbers. How the pollster account for any of this is not clear. Many still go for likely voter, and the definition of likely voter is somebody who always votes - I'm betting it will be different this time simply because it was different in the primaries (and pollsters took a bath, esp. in underestimating Obama's vote); but how they weigh the voter registration is key. When they ask registered voters, apparently they still do so according to the percentages from the last election.

    There's another thing: in the polls in which all candidates are included, esp. Obama already trounces McCain. Nader doesn't have nearly the same effect on Obama as Barr has on McCain.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    Do we all need to do likewise to counter the hex... I've got lots of work on is all?

    Nope, just me.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Richard Llewellyn,

    My rugby watching mates and I have a rule whereby whenever Dan Carter lines up a kick, we abuse the shit out of him, his kicking ability, the way he's wearing his hair, whatever we can think of to ensure we don't hex him.

    heh - all we need now is for Chris Rattue to write an article about how Obama doesn't stand a chance against the invincible McCain, and we are home and hosed :)

    BTW - on the subject of awesome, I've just been helping out at the Olympic teams arrival in Auckland, and Valerie Vili is one awesome looking athlete, who was clearly delighted with the reception. Mahe Drysdale was also amazing, spending literally hours with all of the kids who wanted photos taken with him and to talk with him - that man has a future in politics if he wants. In fact everyone showed a lot of patience and smiles. Lots of warm fuzzies all round.

    Mt Albert • Since Nov 2006 • 399 posts Report Reply

  • LegBreak,

    How much can we seriously read into what happened in 2004?

    At that time, (enough of) the US seriously believed they had just defeated Al Qaida by invading Iraq.

    And don’t forget that Kerry was stunningly uninspiring.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1162 posts Report Reply

  • dc_red,

    How much can we seriously read into what happened in 2004?
    At that time, (enough of) the US seriously believed they had just defeated Al Qaida by invading Iraq.

    But how many still do (or believe something equally preposterous)?

    And don’t forget that Kerry was stunningly uninspiring.

    Err, look who he was up against! ;-)

    Oil Patch, Alberta • Since Nov 2006 • 706 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    Michelle Obama did indeed speak well. Glad I watched the entire speech, the news last night focused on the video link with her husband. She really peaked near the end of the first ten minutes talking about her father, Dr King, etc.

    The swift-boating campaign trying to link Obama with the former Weatherman Bill Ayers is astonishingly cynical and dishonest.

    This really is braindead stuff isn't it. Also on the list of people that Obama should have to avoid: Nelson Mandela, most Prime Ministers of Israel, anyone in charge of Russia and/or Georgia at present, the whole Middle East... not to mention the entire current US administration.

    Bill Ayers was never involved in any serious terrorist activity though at one stage he certainly planned to. Nor was he convicted of anything upon coming aboveground - charges were dropped due to the misconduct of the FBI and COINTELPRO. The worst he did was participate in the damaging of buildings and a statue.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6243 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Poole,

    free trade
    Yup, I'll grant you that. This is one area where McCain has acted and voted consistently.

    In NZ, we're actually not losing anything if Obama comes in and takes them away from free trade. We've already dragged the US before the WTO more than once, and won. They're hypocritical isolationists at heart, and it shows.

    Plus, if they turn their backs on free trade, we're not at risk of getting fucked with an FTA like the one used to roger the Aussies. No FTA at all is better than an FTA that is projected to have final economic benefits to the value of 0.5% of GDP, when it is fully implemented 20 years after signing, and comes with requirements to gut (the Aussie equivalent of) Pharmac, rewrite copyright law in the model of the DMCA, and distinctly unbalanced trade provisions for agricultural products. Our FTA with China will be in full force before the AUS-FTA completes, and they started several years earlier.

    Auckland • Since Mar 2007 • 4097 posts Report Reply

  • Gareth Ward,

    On the free-trade bit - we could actually see some movement from an Obama-stration on this. Our canny trade operators like Clark and Goff could quite easily go to him and say "we're a small country, not going to have any real impact on you guys, but we are a symbolic nation when it comes to trade and creating an FTA with us would be a good look for you internationally on free trade without hurting that base you're pandering to".
    Most likely worded a little more diplomatically than that of course.


    To me, McCain is awful (really cemented with his "I'm Hamas' worst enemy" Rambo attempt on the Daily Show) and unthinkable - Obama lacks in policy-backing to his speeches (publically, even if it really is there in the background) and while that would frustrate me if I was a US voter the decision would still be an absolute no-brainer.
    Voting for McCain because you think he's more likely to make a decision is hardly a comfort when you consider the decision he's likely to make.

    Auckland, NZ • Since Mar 2007 • 1727 posts Report Reply

  • Stanley Pointen,

    'It's going to be a thing of Lyndon Johnsonesque proportions. You mark my words.'

    Ah, the last real Texan in the White House. Bush, of course, is an eastern frat-brat fraud, and no Texan.

    What I find facinating is how the US MSM have run with Michelle's party piece so fairly. Sure, CNN and others took it live, which restricts the media's ability to interpret news for us, but the 'analysis' has been very even-handed.

    And on Lyndon, he knew, as I think the Obama people do, that it is about tactical turn out, not top line national polling. The electoral college rules this race. And on this basis, a landslide is entirely possible.

    Auckland • Since May 2008 • 26 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    lacks in policy-backing to his speeches (publically, even if it really is there in the background) and while that would frustrate me if I was a voter the decision would still be an absolute no-brainer.

    That sounds uncannily familiar, locally speaking.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19706 posts Report Reply

  • George Darroch,

    People, the election has already been decided. Diebold accidentally leaked the results.

    WLG • Since Nov 2006 • 2264 posts Report Reply

  • Danyl Mclauchlan,

    One was when I tried to roll over during treatment on my messed-up back on Monday.

    What's wrong with your back?

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 927 posts Report Reply

  • uroskin,

    As an aside, over the next three nights Triangle TV and Stratos TV will broadcast the VOA DNC (Triangle from 10pm-1am, Stratos from 10.30pm-1.30am, Wed/Thu/Fri)
    Next week, the RNC will be covered Tue to Friday (Triangle TV 10pm-1am, highlights on Stratos at 5-6pm)

    Waiheke Island • Since Feb 2007 • 178 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    What's wrong with your back?

    Oh, just an unpleasant and cascading series of strains and spasms. Nothing serious. Except when I move.

    Unfortunately, it looks like my ace new ergonomic chair ain't arriving till next week.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22825 posts Report Reply

  • Andrew Smith,

    The interview with Rick Warren was telling. Obama once again came across as far too idealistic and hugely adept at platitudes. McCain has flaws in his econoimc knowledage, but came across as decisive and realistic. The election will come down to Leadership and expereince. Obama, even with a manicured wife, will have no chance when the people come to make that choice in November. The Dems have already 'F*ked' it up.

    Since Jan 2007 • 150 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    McCain has flaws in his econoimc knowledage

    For instance, he's lost count how many houses he owns.

    The election will come down to Leadership

    It's never a bad time to quote George Carlin: "Leadership camp... Isn't that were the Nazi went?"

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    Obama, even with a manicured wife

    Dear gods, Andrew, are you actually refering to her hands, or did you perhaps mean to say something like 'intelligent' or 'articulate'? Or do you think people are watching that speech and thinking 'wow, she managed to brush her hair'?

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4651 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    Michelle Obama's Democratic convention speech.
    I thought she was incredible.

    She isn't running though. And the US constitution doesn't call for a couple to be elected.

    I'm not knocking Obama, but I do find a system where the candidate and their partner are assumed to be a political team somewhat presumptive.

    It'd be nice to have a Democratic women president whose girlfriend's a Republican, one day.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5550 posts Report Reply

  • Danielle,

    Obama once again came across as far too idealistic and hugely adept at platitudes. McCain has flaws in his econoimc knowledage, but came across as decisive and realistic.

    See, I thought McCain came over as someone barking talking points without really even considering the questions. If you'd been playing a drinking game and taken a tequila shot every time he said 'my friends', you'd have been dead from alcohol poisoning in about twenty minutes.

    Also, idealism? That's a bad thing?

    even with a manicured wife

    There are a lot of weird implications stemming from this clause, and I don't think I like a single damn one of them.

    Charo World. Cuchi-cuchi!… • Since Nov 2006 • 3828 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    I'm not knocking Obama, but I do find a system where the candidate and their partner are assumed to be a political team somewhat presumptive.

    Sure. But that's the reality. The Right-Wing talking Points Machine has been using Michelle as an attack vector against Barack for months. She had to get up there and turn that around -- ideally, without turning herself into a black Steptford wife. She nailed that.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22825 posts Report Reply

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