Tuesday, September 30, 2008

First Amendment and the Campaigns: No Signs on Public Property??

As a Virginian, I take alot of the sacrifices that have been undertaken by our ancestors very seriously. I especially get very frustrated when in modern times we allow the very things that our forefathers fought for and defended simply be cast aside for a modern day photo-op.

I hold contempt for the modern political campaign that would suspend rights granted under our Consititution while they campaign and then expect that we should feel confident that they will execute the office in which they seek and defend the very Constitution that on the campaign trail shred at various events.

Both campaigns may certainly be guilty of this, but recently it was the Barack Obama campaign here in the Commonwealth of Virginia at the University of Mary Washington that banned free speech for the purposes of a campaign rally.

Did Barack Obama forget exactly where he was? Did he forget that he was standing on hallowed ground?

Mary Washington, last time I checked, is a state-supported, public university which receives state tax dollars in support of its operations. In effect, all of us Virginians own it. In fact, the insurance policy carried on the very facilities in which were used by the Obama campaign are paid for from State resources funded by tax dollars. If something had happened there, would it not be the State who would be on the hook?

The Obama campaign banned all signs for the event stating it was being done as a matter of safety. Safety? Okay, I get the no golf umbrella thing at Major sporting events, but no signs expressing freedom of speech on State property?

Did the Obama campaign take a page out of UVA' s book? After the drubbing UVA was handed by Duke (31-3) I guess there is reasons for the "Fire Groh" signs to come back but the schools policy against signs at football games was one reason I will never contribute to the Alumni Fund or any UVA fundraiser. The Stadium is located on campus and like Mary Washington is part of the State system. Your tax dollars as work.

So it begs the question, why would a public University or a community cave to a political campaign and ban freedom of speech on public property during an event held on a Virginia campus?

Is it because those running our higher education believe they are above the declaration of rights under our Constitution and have the power to dismiss such rights, if but temporarily, for the purposes of promoting a political campaign?

After this election season, I would like to see a bill come before our General Assembly that would not permit any political campaign rallys on State supported property, especially if they plan to usurp the Constitution in any manner whatsoever. Our State system is based on tax payer support and should be recognized as such in the future and any University President whom allows the suspension of rights should be held accountable by the State or at the very least the community in which the University is located.

By the way, the U.S. Secret Service has stated that signs are in no way a security issue. So I think the Obama campaign should rethink its rationale for banning signs and removing signs from the crowds at rallies.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Republitarian: Shameful Video of Democrats Rejecting Oversight of Fannie and Freddie Called for by House Republicans in 2005

While here I posted a peice about how a few years back Rep. Baker (R) of Louisiana had called out the practices of Fannie Mae and Freddie mac and in fact challenged the truthfulness of the very tesitimony CEO Franklin Raines gave before a Congressional committee.

Over at the blog Republitarian, http://republitarian.com , they have the video that goes along with the piece we posted here that was dug out of hours of Congressional video footage.

It is the opinion here that the following leaders on display in the video simply have no shame.

It is leaders such as these that create such low approval ratings of our Congress and should be fully investigated as to the degree in which they personally or professionally have gained from the causes of this financial crisis.

Rep. Meeks
Rep. Waters (center stage this week and vocal about how crisis caused by Wall Street)
Rep. Franks (at the forrfront today as Finance Chairman in the House)

All defend their friends at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and have the audacity to blame regulators and not the management of these companies as far back as 2005 when regulators were alerting Washington to the mess in the books at these companies.

Democratic Solution in 2005? Hang the Regulators out to dry!!!

Is it not the Democrats now who say we need more and more regulation as they accuse Republicans as not wanting to regulate wall Street? Was it not the Republicans calling for it back in 2005?

Was it not Rep. Franks who stated that these mortgage gaints were "safe and secure"? Is he not now just three years later the Chairman of the Finance Committee in the House?

Well the video shown below shows Republicans calling for increased regulations as early as 2005. The actions of:

Rep. Baker
Rep. Royce
Rep Shays

Did not George Bush call for increased regulations and oversight by Congress?

Display that as far back as 2005, it was Republicans calling for increased scrutiny into the mortgage giants failure to follow the guidelines mandated by regulators in their accounting. Republicans called for more oversight by Congress and Democrats rejected it.

If you want to gain insight into how we got here, visit here and play the video.


Pay particular attention to Bill Clinton's comments about fellow Democrats who dropped the ball here.

This is a nice tie in to our previous post. Good work over at Republitarian.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Hispanic Community Backlash: Obama Never Visted Latin America

Apparently there is a growing sentiment of discontent the more the Hispanic community learns about the real Barack Obama. Offending many older Cuban Americans in the past with just gaffes as his willingness to meet and talk with the Castros and in another gaffe felt compelled to state that he would meet with Hugo Chavez as well.

Well, excuse us. When has Barack Obama ever met with any other Latin American leaders and more specifically Central America? Considering the greatest number of Hispanics residing in America have come from Mexico, Guatamala, Honduras and El Salvador many in the Hispanic community are questioni8ng my it is the next President could possibly be a man who has never met with nor felt compelled to meet with leaders from Latin America.

The Hispanic community certainly has a point now doesn't it?

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Post/ABC News Poll: Sleepwalking Pollsters

There comes a point when all these pollsters have to simply just take some time off, take a break, take a step back and look at and see if there are other motives behind the polling in the first place.

I only say this because alot of these polls are all over the place. How can all these different polling agencies not even be in the same ballpark half the time? Well the answer lies in the analysis.

The analysis bears out that the "polls" are not in effect polling effectively with regard to what the election day will bring. Some can infer that because we are so far away from November 4th that polls are meaningless and in fact they are except for one very important thing; the news soundbite.

Its not a coincidence that these news agencies conduct these polls and then provide the information to the broadcast groups and simply provide the results to them to broadcast. Very little specifics are released at the time a poll is released regarding respondents.

For example, the Post/ABC news poll released today has Barack Obama leading John McCain by NINE points. NINE? Yeap :

49% to 43%

The news media simply reports the results and portrays it as headlines without any analysis of the underlying data supporting the poll in the first place.

In this case, the ABC News poll is complete absurdity.

In polled 1,082 respondents (916 registered voters and 780 likely voters)
76% were registered voters

Of the 1,082 polled 54% Democrat Party 38% Republican Party & 7% Independent/Other
Leaning % : 46% Democrat and 28% Republican

44% Protestant 22% Catholic 11% Non-Protestant
Born Again Evangelical: 54% NO 45% yes

White 74%
Black 12% (163 respondents)
Hispanic 6%
Asain 1%

Female 52%
Male 48%

With datapoints as these I am amazed that John McCain got 43%.

Does ABC News actually believe that this sample is representative of the electorate on November 4th?

Or is the poll simply set up to provide talking points for the left and left wing bloggers that have taken this poll and run with it without disclosing any of the datapoints.

Again I call into the question the integrity here by those surrogates who use polls like this to "convince" people of a reality that is simply whimsical in an effort to drum up more support.

Look this election is close, very close and is leaning to Obama no doubt but NINE points. This just a day after other media release polling on 1/3 of the Democrats have a racial bias towards Blacks. That polling is about as valid as this latest ABC News poll.

This poll strikes of shilling for a candidate. There can be no denial of that given the parameters of the respondent group.

There is a 16% difference in the datapoint Democrat to Republican.


No way is this a fair and legitimate sample.

Public Policy Polling is a far better and legitmately consistent polling service in my view on balance, which is very telling about the mainstream media and how they conduct their polling groups.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Obama & Biden: Appalachia Need not Apply; No Coal in USA

Well here we go again. The Obama campaign saying one thing in one region and then another thing in another region.

You would think that these guys would learn that everyhting they say and do is under a microscope and that they should just determine a position of their own for a change instead of going with talking points from the campaign staff predicated on where the bus may have just stopped.

Obama has continually flip flopped on coal as we have covered here often throughout the Primary, but now Joe Biden gets in on the act as well.

Biden visited Virginia this week and actaully called himself a "hard line coal" miner given his birthplace of Scranton, PA and his roots. Biden of course has never been miner and some are fact checking whether he has even actually been in a mine in his capacity as Senator. But after pledging to Southwest Virginians positions favorable to coal he leaves the region and then has this to say: (video)


So which is it guys? Coal or no Coal? Is Coal really part of the future Energy Plan from an Obama-Biden administration or not?

Are the rumors true that former VP Al Gore will be named Secretary of Energy in an Obama-Biden administration?

Has Barack Obama given up on those voters that gravitated to Hillary Clinton in OH, PA, WV, VA in the Primary that make up the great coal region of Appalachia? Has he truly turned his back on clean coal technology or was the 85 million earmark he secured in the Energy Bill for Illinois to study IL coal capabilities for use in clean coal technology merely just a milking of the pork barrel system that John McCain opposes in Washington?

Monday, September 22, 2008

Faith in the Media Lost: Bailout Another Example of Favoritism

Many people have always associated Wall Street with the Republican Party. This has happened for the most part because Republicans have always sought a free market system and always have placed business as a focal point to the Party platform, but if Wall Street is as connected to the GOP as people would like to believe than the Media is certainly as connected to the Democrats.

Its times like this financial crisis, many Americans are looking to the media to provide unbiased information or a sense of direction as to how to navigate the waters. During these times, not unlike 9/11, Americans put their politics on the shelf and focus on whats best not only for themselves but also the country. Why can't the media in this nation do the same?

Simple. They have a vested interest not unlike our politicians in Washington.

There is this notion that the mortgage companies are whom we should be directing the blame for the crisis and the mainstream media has taken up the torch of that bandwagon instead of attempting to analyze the crisis from the basis of cause and effect. While many Americans simply want to know whether their money and retirement money is safe and how the bailouts are going to impact them and their families, there are also those of us who understand that we are being outright lied to by the pundits and the media.

If this crisis has made us understand one undeniable prospect its that we should have zero faith in our media. The media has become nothing more that organizations "shilling" for political agendas. There is little desire on behalf of the media to actually review records and hold accountable those politicians they invite to appear on their programs who outright lie to the American people. There is littel desire for truth, but simply truths through peferred lenses.

Case in point. That this whole crisis in mortgage-backed securities has somehow been an apparent surprise to those who sat on the very committees whose function it is to perform oversight and that it is George Bush policy which is the culprit.

It baffles me how the media can interview the head of the Banking Committee and not even challenge him, in this case Sen. Christopher Dodd, with regard to the function of the committee and what it knew and when it knew it. Dodd has continually misled the American people as to his own situation regarding preffered loans and further what Congress knew for the better part of a week and is simply allowed to voice talking points that provide him and his associates cover in the calm before the storm regarding the bailout agenda.

If there are two leaders that should be called to resign from office for breaking the trust of the American people it is Christopher Dodd and Barney Frank. Now I realize both these men are Democrats and this call is not meant to be partisan and would be called for had the Republicans been the majority, but the fact remains the Congress is controlled by the Democrats since 2006 and they control the committees and there is an issue of accountability that must be exercised here. Congress has been party to this crisis as much as the private/public sector and eeds to be held accountable.

For these men to go on television and attempt to deflect responsibility to the GOP or John McCain in some form of another crys of a lack of not only transparency of the facts but also follow-up by the media. These gentleman have sat on these committees for years and have known exactly the issues befronting both the investment banks and the mortgage giants in Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

Could it be that all the money and contributions made by the folks on Wall Street, from Deleware's credit card industry, and Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae to Dodd , Frank, and others may have at some point called their integrity and objectivity into question?

Why is it left to the GOP to raise such issues and not the media which is supposed to be objective? Why has the media outlets provided both Party's an outlet not to hold to task but to promote talking points? Why has the media refused to look at the Congressional record? Why does MSNBC refuse to acknowledge both Mccain attempts in 2005 for oversight and George Bush's as well his first term. I can see how MSNBC might have missed it given Bush sought such measures some 17 times from Congress.

Are there no more Tim Russerts left? Has the loss of Tim Russert taken our media into a rhelm of marginalism? Has it left the NBC news division with little remnants of its former self as it allows its MSNBC unit to usurb its historical journalistic integrity?

No idea this crisis could happen?

Well, in 2000 it was LA Rep. Richard Baker on the bankinhg subcommittee that challenged the likes of Franklin Raines and the mortgage behemouths Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Baker called for increased oversight Baker even went as far as to say it was his belief that Raines misled Congress in his testimony before Congress and Baker also pushed for the resignations for the regulators who job it was to oversee the government service enterprises.

Bakers objections and call to arms was ignored by the Chairman. In fact, Barney Franks stated that the speculation of an impending crisis was "overblown".

"OVERBLOWN"!!! really ?

Franks later would say that in terms of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, "there would be no Federal liability whatsoever" and Franks also said he did not "regard Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac as problematic".

"PROBLEMATIC!"!! really?

In 2005, by the way one federal regulator in Armando Falcon Jr. resigned and another stated that these companies should be "scaled back".

Instead of focusing on the facts and history as a means of addressing this crisis and how it came about, the media simply is out to shift blame to of all people Sen. John Mccain. They would like America to believe that this crisis is merely the offspring of poor economic policy of the GOP according to Obama and not the work of long standing politicians from both Parties whom have personally benefited from the lobbying groups representing these companies.

By now we all are aware that Christopher Dodd and Barack Obama sit 1, 2 on the list for contributions made from Fannie and Freddie. We know that Obama has within his advisors those who benefited directly from this crisis or argueably were to cause of it and one actually ran Obama's VP search committee. And yet, Obama goes on the offensive against McCain thathe somehow is the problem.

Ugh? Okay. You make that leap than you might want to look to your VP Obama. Biden supported the legislation that Bill Clinton passed in the 90's that was the true deregulation mechanism that the media keeps trying to pin on Bush. Bush tried numorous times in his first term to get Fannie and Freddie checked. Lest we forget these mortgage companies are not exactly bastions of GOP-friendly people, but rather ex-partisans from the Clinton adminstration and those supporting Al Gore in 2000 over Bush. Bush would have no interest in propping them up as MSNBC likes to project routinely in its rhetoric.

The Congressional record points to the fact that it was Republicans in the House like Baker that routinely spoke out against this and forshadowed this crisis and it was "Barney's Rubble" in Congress that lock step shut those voicing opposition down.

Was this crisis truly a "deregulation" issue?

While I am sure that more will be falling out to address this point, I feel that the information we have now points more to poor lending practices and poor borrowing than anyhting else.

Exactly who was it who promoted the easing of credit standards and loan practices? Ugh? Well it was not Republicans but Barney Frank. It was a political attempt to drive up home ownership through easing the underlying qualifing at the same time have more capital and liquidity brought into the market to make the loans happen.

Are we to believe that from the time Bill Clinton passed his legislation that no one running the Banking and Commerce Committees in Washington were aware of ANY potential issues with this agenda?

Instead, Dodd and Frank seek to pass the buck of accountability to Wall Street and others and shift any blame from themselves and the media simply just goes right along with it.

I would hope that when this is said and done we get some real Congressional oversight not on Wall Street but on Congress itself. Obama claims he was the proponent of Ethics reform? Well lets see him hold to task his fellow Democrats in Congress who are cutting and running before the American people.

If Barack Obama cannot do that than he has no business being President of this great nation.

If he wants to convince independents that he is a serious candidate then he needs to take a stand on this on behalf of the American people.

Democrats had beter hope Obama wins in November because should McCain win the election I would expect him to "make so people famous" in Washington.

Starting with the nice loans Christopher Dodd got and the Congressional malpractice by "Barney's Rubble".

How stupid is the American electorate? Watch these folks will get elected by their constituents again and will still back and wonder why Washington is broken.

Term limits folks. Term limits is the only thing that can challenge such insidership.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

The True "Blue" Recession: Are "Blue" State Economies in Trouble?

To be honest, I still have no real understanding why the Presidential election is as close as it is right now. It seems that the same arguements get made every night on the media/entertainment programs as they try to grasp the harsh reality that no matter what they do Sen John McCain could still win this thing. The reality of the situation is based on the unpopularity of President Bush, the Iraq War, and now the economy it begs the question why Sen. McCain is still within striking distance and why these media concerns have to be frustrated.

Many Democrats in the media are using that little card from the political deck known as the ace of race card to explain the current situation. Given a current Stanford University study regarding the campaigns that concluded that 40% of the electorate may harbor views against blacks that may contribute to votes being cast in opposition to Barack Obama may bear that out to some extent I guess but I think there is a deeper more profound rationale as to why this election in closer than it should be. Peoples own States.

There may be a "blue" State recession in place and it is about to get worse.

A "blue " State recession? What exactly does that mean?

Well, if you examine the current economic data of country and review the numbers you will find that most States that typically are known as true "red" leaning states have economies that appear not to be participating in this so-called "recession" that the mainstream media likes to pound away at everyday as a means of propping up their preferred candidate.

Sen. John McCain's comments about the economy this week demonstrates his disconnect, but not from the reality of the facts, but from the reality that most people follow what the media portrays. Those of us who are students of politics and history know that while McCain's statements were accurate in terms of GDP and unemployment levels, the average person who pays little to those or even understands them simply relies on the press to tell them what the economy is doing. Its the "tell me how I should feel" syndrome.

John McCain's comments while historically accurate was pure political idiocy.

Are we in a national recession? No.
Are we now facing a serious financial crisis? Yes.

Whose to blame? Frankly, everyone in Washington is to blame, especially "Barney's Rubble" (Barney Frank & Company). The fact that Barack Obama is trying to play things off like he had no part in any of it is rather a stretch of political truths, but then his campaign has demonstrated a real knack for such in the last few months. Thats not leadership.

So if we are not in a national recession yet, are we in a regional one? Maybe.

We have seen this before during different financial times and in fact one major area that illustrates the point the best is the housing market. There are actually some pretty good tracking mechanisms in the real estate market that can be used to show how different parts of the country have performed in terms of housing starts and home prices relative to other areas of the country.

But another approach would be to look at the current state of economies for some of the battleground states that seem to be in play in the election to explain exactly why this race may be so close.

If you look at Michigan, which is much tighter than many have predicted, is one state that Barack Obama needs to hold onto just as much as say Pennsylvania. Michigan currently is suffering on of the worst economies in the nation and just announced an 8.9% unemployment rate. The State incurred increase in taxes and the overall budget is in jeapordy under the poor leadership of Democratic Governor Grandholm. The State has a Republican legislature like Virginia, BUT if people want to make the legislature the scapegoat there than they certainly cannot at the same time blame President Bush given the last two years Congress has been controlled by Democrats.

So which is it? Is it Bush's fault or Congress? Is it Grandholm or the State Legislature? I wish the media would make up its mind on these matters, but again they are not really reporting the recent data from Michigan because they would hate for it to influence poorly on their candidate. 8.9% unemployment and the worst schools in the nation in Detriot, where they had to toss out the Mayor and no real coverage at all save covering the courtroom drama. What about the people of Michigan? Do they not deserve to have their story known. In fact, as close as it is in Michigan it gets a littel silly the way some outlets like MSNBC have now shifted focus away to places like New Mexico, Colorodo and Pennsylvania. When Obama was leadin by like eight points it was very important to cover, but now that is is even there appears to be no news. Go figure.

Ohio is another battleground State that Democrats thought that they could take away from the GOP stable and yet again, under a Democrat Governor the State has seen its unemployment rise to 7.2% and a net loss in jobs there that again is being placed on the steps of Bush. Evidently, the media has forgotten a littel thing called NAFTA inacted by President Clinton that to this day is still hurting the manufacturing areas of Ohio. And yet, the areas of Akron, Cleveland,canton, Toldeo, and Dayton still lean Democrat while Cincinnati and Columbus lean Republican. Its crazy.

I wonder whatever happened to Ross Perot? The guy might just deserve a medal. He predicted all, and I mean all of this including the financial crisis almost seventeen years ago. Is Ron paul the present day Ross Perot? Could be, but I doubt he would get the amount of votes Perot got in the national election. I wonder of Bill Clinton still sends Christmas cards to the Perots?

Illinois, the fighting Illini, have to fight for every job they got. While not a battleground state, it just goes to prove you get exactly what you vote for. They have unemployment around 7.5% and appear so entrenched in corruption that the only ones benefiting are the top and of course Barack Obama. Look at this guys own state. What has he down to help his own state? is he working with the Democratic Governor, the Democratic legislature, the other Democratic Senator, or the Democratic Mayor of Chicago? Illinois is a wonderful place but it is run frankly by a bunch of hulligans.

California is a state that suffering from some serious economic issues as well. Though the state has a Republican-lite Governor and has worked with the Democratic legislature as much as possible CA will still punch Obama's ticket in the Fall. Kerry took the State by 10% in 2004. It latest unemployment numbers are at 7.3%.

On another note lets take Virginia for instance. A Democratic Governor in Tim Kaine and a Republican legislature have returned in an unemployment rate of 4.4%, well below the national average. How was this accomplished? Well to be honest there will be a shortfall, but the economy has been aided by average taxes and increased spending in areas like the defense, contracting, consulting and such brought about by the War on Terror. Virginia has weathered many of the storms that other States could not in large part because of the employment rolls within the Federal government as well in Northern Virginia. The fact that things have not slipped has contributed more to Barack Obama keeping things really close in Virginia. In terms of housing, Northern Virginia (especially Manassas) has sufffered greatly in the mortgage crisis whereas as predominately and historically GOP areas like Central Virginia and Southwest were not hit as hard. Anoter result of the actions of "Barneys Rubble" in Washington. I do think Gov. Kaine, like Mitt Romney did in MA, with an opposition legislature has proven to be able to put Virginians first but am not looking forward to the proposed increase in taxes that may be on the horizon. Increased taxes, an Obama Presidency, and a net loss of jobs in technology and defense proposed by Obama may result in Virginia falling to the depths of Michigan, Ohio, or Illinois as well.

The bottomline here is that in States controlled by Democrats there appears to be a tendency to push for higher tax rates, higher regulations and increasingly higher environmental constraints upon economies and the end results are that "Blue" states have performed much poorer than say North Dakota, South Dakota, Idaho, Nebraska, and Okalahoma all with economies performing higher and better than the national averages and run by Republicans. This is a time for some real hard pressed budget considerations and a time to go NutriSystem or Weight Watchers with our State's financials.

And for the naysayers:

"Anyone who says we are in a recession, or heading into one-especially the wrost since the Great depression-is making up his own personal definition of "recession" and probably for his own political purposes" (Edward Leaner-UCLA economist)

Afterall a GDP growth rate of 3.4% and one growing 52 consecutive quaters is certainly not any "recession" I have ever experienced before. Not saying people are not hurting, not saying these are not difficult times, but I am saying this is not fundamentally a recession by any historical notion, but in these battleground states the issue of the economy is hightened in the debate because internally leaders have been ineffective.

Don't you just love it when Governors get on MSNBC and blame the Feds for all their woes? take some responsibility for a change like some Governors have for god sakes.

Some other data from other States in the mix:
Pennsylvania: (D) 5.8% (leaning Obama)
New Jersey: (D) 5.9% (tighter than expected-leans Obama)
South Carolina (R) 7.6% (safely McCain)
Florida: (R) 6.5% (toss-up)
*Though I like the (R) Governor down in Florida it has some real issues befronting it. If there is a state that may swing on the oil/drilling debate it could be FL. Those revenues could really assist that state. The hospitality industry and sales taxes from food, lodging, dining are getting hammered in 2008. Ask yourself, just how well did Disney World do this year with gas $4+?

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Public Policy Polling: Virginia

The latest edition of the monthly Public Policy Polling data is out for September 13 & 14th which polled 1,090 Virgianians regarding.

Very little has changed in Virginia, a critical battleground state for both candidates and Barack Obama still leads John McCain by 2 pts. The current polling has the race sitting at 48-46.

Just as last month the number of respondents to the poll were mostly declared Democrats but of those total respondents 93% declared themselves firm in their descision while 5% remained undecided. 55% of those polled were woman.

So far it appears as though Obama is strong with voters under 65, women, and minority voters whereas McCain has commanding lead with voters that are male, those over 65, and those white.

Virginia is remarkable in one respect and that is it has been relatively unaffected thus far by the conventions in terms of the polls. Other States like OHIO have moved over to John McCain.

PPP data for September has McCain 48-44 in OHIO where is has taken over Obama through his increases in declared independents supporting his campaign. Last month Obama has control of these voters, but there has been an eighteen point shift in white independent voters since August.

The ground game in Virginia the last few months has been overwhelmingly favoring Obama. If the polls in Ohio and Florida remain firm, expect resources from the McCain campaign to move into Virginia. The areas the campaign will target will be Hampton Roads/Va Beach and a return to Fairfax and Loudon areas where there is still Republican support. McCain will need these voters to offset the gains Obama will be handed by Alexandria, Arlington and Democrats in Fairfax.

I would expect and there is some talk of a Sarah Palin visit to Chesepeake/Va Beach while John McCain will revisit and campaign in NOVA where there is a considerable number independent voters.

Obama on the other hand may have to shift focus back to OHIO and Michigan and now even Wisconsin where his numbers are either falling or is getting tighter. Obama knows that if he wins Virginia it would be a severe blow to McCain, but if he loses the other states and PA remains competetive he may have to go defensive in areas that he did not plan on. No one thought that PA and Wisconsin would really be in play and with McCain remaining ahead in OH and FL the map is getting really tight.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Barack Obama and Virginia Defense Spending Procurement: Independents Saying Your No Jim Webb

If there is one single issue in Virginia that is driving Independents and moderates away from Barack Obama it is simply the fact that based on Obama's own statements and plans with regard to Defense spending and the Military in general many voters are quickly realizing that Obama is not Jim Webb and may be wrong for Virginia's economy.

Veterans make up roughly 800K of the Virginia population and the biggest proponent behind the Commonwealth's economy is certainly the Defense industry. The fact remains that the largest portion of our economy is directly impacted by defense spending and authorizations by Congress. This is a major reason why many Independents felt relieved when Se. Jim Webb passed on the potential running mate slot with Barack Obama. Virginia will already lose a senior Armed Services Committee member in Sen. John Warner due to his retirement. We could ill offered to lose Webb in the Senate as well.

The facts are plain no mater how folks in Northern Virginia seek to twist and turn them. Obama's rhetoric on Defense and his plans are not adding up. In 2008, 56 billion defense dollars has resulted in Virginia being the largest per capita on defense spending in the country. Virginia employs 245K civilian, active and reserve members in the Department of Defense. Only the state of California employs more.

Currently, there is a battle brewing in Hamption Roads and Virginia Beach between Obama and Sen. John McCain for votes. Barack Obama is attempting to fight in traditionally pro-Republican areas for voters that his campaign feels may have become disillusioned by the last four years of deployments and strain upon military families in the region. There is no denying that such issues certainly exist, but the Obama campaign is betting on emotions rather than the economic realities of Virginia and in particular the Hampton Roads region.

Hampton Roads employs 59% of all Virginia defense-oriented workers. The U.S. Navy and Marine Corps have some 140K participating in both uniform and civilian roles there and one of Virginia's largest defense employers, Northrup Grumman's Virginia division brings 6.46 billion in contracts to bear upon the region through its divisions and as a result of its purchase in 2003 of Newport News Shipbuilding., which builds submarines and aircraft carriers. Of the 35K Grumman employees, 21K are located in Newport News.

Defense spending and the National Defense Authorizations by Congress result in Virginia being a direct benificiary of policy in Washington. The issue is how will defense policy be impacted should Barack Obama win the election in November. The fact remains one of the greatest sources of hope in our Virginia economy has been the defense industry since 9/11. Without such contributions there is very little to keep Virginia from being another Ohio or Michigan. Virginia has relied on these contracts to defense contractors and in fact it has been one area that has resulted in an increase in jobs within the economy as a whole.

So what are the reservations about Obama?

It is quite simple. Virginians who understand and grasp our economy remember the impacts of President Bill Clinton with regard to the military and defense appropriations. Clinton in dealing with cutting the budget was viewed by many as a moderate in dealing with spending. The problem was a majority of his cuts came in the defense arena.

From 1992 to 2000, 500,000 military personnel were dropped from the payrolls of the Department of Defense through the different service branches. Clinton also cut 50 billion in defense related spending as well. By 2000 the U.S. Navy saw a net loss of roughly 100 surface ships with no appropriations for replacements. The USAF saw a reduction of 30% of its force, the Marine Corps was cut by 22,000, and the U.S. Army lost 4 active divisions and 2 reserve component divisions due to the downsizing of the military.

If you recall a major issue in the 2000 Presidential Election was the Military's overall "readiness" standard. It is a fact that in 2000 12 of 20 of the Army schools of instruction; where soldiers gain their respective Military Occupation Specialties were given the lowest rating by command and 2 of the 10 Active Army Divisions received the same grade.

How does this relate to Barack Obama?

Obama is less a friend to the military than Clinton. Clinton while downsizing the Federal payrolls by 305,000 jobs did so by cutting 286,000 of that number related to the military and defense. It is of course one of the largest areas of the Federal budget and rightfully so if you are a big supporter of the U.S. Constitution. There has been some arguement that Obama will not replicate this given the current foriegn policy quagmire left by the Bush administration, but one has to remember that Clinton continued such reductions throughout deployments in Somalia (1993), Haiti(1994), Bosnia (1996) and Iraq/Kuwait (1998).

Should there be concern Barack Obama will do the same? You bet.

Obama has set forth many plans; heathcare, education, economy, energy but the only thing he has pointed to to pay for all these measures is raising the tax rates on individuals making in excess of 250,000. I fairness, Obama claims he will seek a tax cut for the middle class and if successful the only thing he will be able to do to meet all the financial demands of his plans is cut spending. And where do you think he will start?

How do we know he will cut Defense-related spending? Well, his own words are a start;

"I will cut missile defense systems"
"I will not weaponize space"
"I will slow the development of future combat systems"
"I will not develop new nuclear weapons"

These are Barack Obama's words. He also plans to reduce defense R&D in the budget as well.

Before the likes of Raising Kaine and Cobalt 6 cry foul, here is the exact video by the Obama campaign:


So why would Independents who supported Jim Webb in 2006 feel compelled to support John McCain. Simple. Webb is more like John Warner on defense and as a previous Secretary of the Navy has a firm grasp on the requirements necessary and has a vested interet in protecting Virginia's economy. Obama does not.

In short, Barack Obama is no Jim Webb.

In fact, if you look at the 2005 BRAC (base Realignment & Closure) process you will find that Ft. Monroe was ordered to be closed by 2011. This a net loss of 3,300 direct jobs in the Hampton Roads region and another estimated 1,000 jobs indirectly related to the base in the community. In fact, Naval Air Station Oceana near Virginia Beach was also recommended to be closed but was saved thankfully. It may not be so lucky the next time round of cuts that Democrats in Congress support along with Barack Obama's cuts in defense spending. Oceana employs roughly 10,000.

Jim Webb will have to fight for Oceana for us because most likely Mark Warner or Jim Gilmore will certainly not get a high ranking committee position as a freshman without some real assistance. Virginia had better hope that should Warner win he gets something for his speech at the Convention for supporting Obama by fellow Democrats in the Senate.

So while I am certain that there are many Virginians who have been under strain during these deployments and fighting the War on terrorism, I just cannot see them supporting Barack Obama given the regions utter dependence on defense spending and the military. The case has to be made to these voters in regard to Virginia's economy, which has stood better than most States because of the Defense industry.

We can only look to Barack Obama's record in the Senate;

National Defense Authorizations (S1042) NO
Emergency Defense Supplemental S240 NO
Nation Defense Authorization 2008 HR1585 NV
Military Commission Act S3930 NO
Funding for Operations Iraq/Afghanistan NV

Republicans like Thelma Drake from the region should be making the case on behalf of John McCain for her region that a vote for Barack Obama would be a net loss for the region in terms of jobs and economic vitality. If she has any belief in her own career preservation she had better get on it because you can bet that the Democrats in her region will blame her and not Obama for any further bases being closed or any defense cuts made by Congress.

So when we talk "Economy Stupid", lets make sure we put it into the context of whats best for Virginia as well. I would not expect that you will see the media do this for you. We are already facing a budget shortfall in Virginia and any reduction in defense appropriations will result in lost jobs and revenues for Virginia and could certainly create major concerns for our own economy.

So while thousands of young Virginians may be taken with Barack Obama, there comes a point where in reality they are really casting a vote on Virginia's economy for the coming years. There is a reason why Virginia has voted Republican for President for the last thirty plus years and the Defense industry, Military, and Defense spending has a lot to do with it.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Raising Kaine: The Distortions and Lies Just Keep Coming

I was always raised that when you get knocked down, you pull yourself back up. But you pull yourself back up with respect, integrity, and honor. I was alwasy taught to look at adversity as a means of overcoming and in the Marines we improvised, adapted and overcame.

What I was never taught was to lie, distort, spin, misrepresent as a means of getting back up. That is exactly what the online community Raising Kaine has done when faced with such adversity. Instead of remaining focused on the issues and attempting to promote or advance th agenda of the movement they endorse, they go negative and subvert any truth in the process.

Take for example the latest claim by Raising Kaine diarists that McCain/Palin campaign is "inflating" or "quadrupling" the number in attendence at the Van Dyck Park in Fairfax last Wednesday. The reported attandence at the rally was roughly 23,000, which was covered by all three cable networks as well as major newspapers.

It is Raising Kaine's contention that the rally was a mere 6,000. Mind you of course none of that community was likely there of course, but I recall an Obama rally last year in Virginia that they claimed had drawn around 10,000 people and to be sure this crowd was twcie that as this blogger managed to "witness" both.

Oh, but they claim to want to talk about "issues".

Well, Raising Kaineites I suggest you visit the blog TWO CONSERVATIVES and take a look at a the information that completely contradicts your repeated claims that McCain does not support equal pay for women or advancement of women in the workplace given the current records of the two campains.

Oh, no I am not talking about Sarah Palin.

I am talking about the fact that McCain has three women at the top of his campaign and the McCain campaign not only has more women working in it but McCain is paying those women better than that of the Obama campaign. Why is it that Obama's record yet agains does not measure up to your rhetoric Raising Kaine? Facts are disturbing I know but the record is right there in the campaign financials.

And because you have seen an Obama lead in the Virginia polls wither away in the last month, instead of working harder and fighting for your candidate's "vision" you resort to insulting McCain service and his injuries that prevent him from being able to use the computer as well as prevent him from dressing without assistance. "Issues" right?

It must be rather frustrating to have your candidate cut and run from your environmental platform. For everyday you bash Dominion Resources and ridicule our coal producing areas you have Barack Obama out there endorsing coal as part of his energy plan. Is he lying? Or did you guys just get the second biggest brush off in less than a year; the first being Mark Warner. How is it that the Democratic nominee in Obama and the State Party's nominee for Senate in Warner reject your platform? Or is it somehow you have convinced yourselves that they really do believe we should do away with coal completely as a means of generating energy or producing steel? yeah, why don't you guys take that message on the road to Appalachia and see exactly how many votes you get there.

And education, are not you folks at Raising Kaine against "charter" schools? But didn't Obama just come out in favor of such schools? And the bailouts that you guys look on as Republican based bailouts and the bailing out of the rich on Wall Street and not Barney on Main Street and oppose, is Obama not supporting such measures by the current Congress?

Lets keep peeling this onion guys. I wonder if they at RK will ever tire of scratching their heads regarding Obama. One thing is for sure, they got their wish in that Hillary Clinton was not selected by Obama for the VP slot and just maybe that will in the end be their undoing. If there is one person who can relate to McCain in terms of the lies, distortions, and frankly hate from RK its Hillary Clinton.

I have always been a believer that if you simply fight the battle for hearts and minds of the indepedents with simply the words of the other side it will go a long way in demonstrating just how pessimistic they really are about America. In fact, Friday night I was presented with a greatest hits from Raising Kaine from over the past few months and talk about a gold mine of opposition research. The more Virginians come to understand the "words" and the "tactics" Raising Kaine employ the more Leslie Byrne's they will suceed in getting defeated.

Just like the Connolly/Byrne primary, they have embarked into an arena of lies, distortions, and a strategy void of facts that will push people away and judging by the 20,000+ at the Fairfax rally that push is well underway.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Silence of Ignorance: Fate of Drilling

It always amazes me just how idiotic some of our politicians actually can be in the face of sticking with a political talking point no matter how invalid or ignorant.

If there is one message that the drilling issue points to in this election is in integrity on the issues. If Barack Obama was truly for more drilling as part of his energy plan it begs the question as to why the new head of the Party and the so-called future of politics cannot manage to push House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid off the ignorant positions they hold regarding the drilling debate.

If Barack Obama cannot call for a call to arms to get moving on energy policy how are we to have any real confidence that his changing views on the issue are genuine and not an election gimmick. We all know that Obama is shifting to the middle or center, but this should be an opportunity for Obama to demonstrate his new platform of putting reality above politics.

I seriously wonder if the Democrats are cappable of "putting country first". They ridicule the GOP slogan of John McCain and yet they have an opportunity here to demonstrate that an effective energy policy is a priority, now different that what was required after 9/11 when politics was put aside for the benefit of the country.

Hurrican aafter Hurricane traditionally slams the Gulf of Mexico every year and with the studies regarding global climate change endorsed by the Democrats that point to increased natural events like Hurricanes it makes you wonder that if they believe their own rhetoric and science behind the issues why they still fail to to action.

Why does Pelosi and Reid and Democrats in Congress suffer from an inability to connect the dots.

35% of our refineries are as of this morning in the direct path of Hurricane Ike. Drilling has been impacted in the Gulf States for six weeks staright now, reducing both production and refining. Given how so much of our national capabilities are located in a single region, th Gulf, isn't it about time to open up other areas to balance the exposure of our energy production.

Ike is currently approaching a Catagory 3. Isn't it about time that we begin to ask ourselves what happens if Houston, galveston, Port Arthur and all the way to New Orleans is hit with storm surges in excess of 20 feet. What will be the impact on energy prices and on the levels of the strategic reserve?

Those in Congress are playing politics for no other reason than to play wait and see politics regarding the election. They are demonstrating the very failure in Washington that both political campaigns have shaped the "reform" and "change" messages around. It is unbelievable that at a time when the Congress has an approval rating of about 12% that they would continue down such a path of ignorance.

Are they betting that Amercians will simply blame George Bush? Do they actually think that they will be given a pass?

I would like to see some direct campaigning and ads directed by the GOP at this Congress who has since 2006 continually sat on it s hands in an effort to shape the Election in November. They have the power to create an energy plan right now given that the two Parties on the campaign trail are so similar now.

Are they affraid of some sort of fallout given their position for so long has been to limit drilling to the current areas? Do they not see the opportunity before them? Do they not see the potential linking between them and obstrcutionism?

There is a chance here that if Hurricane Ike hits harder than expected that energy prices could see a mhuge run up due to shrinking supplies. Gas at the pump could easily rise back to $4 -$5 bucks a gallon going into the final weeks of the Election.

Who is willing to "bring about change"? I mean really. Washington has the power and support to refine the policy that would better shield us from the impacts of direct storms upon the Gulf by spreading our drilling capabilities and refining operations throughout the country.

They have the ability to do it right now, but lack the will to do so.

I have placed calls to my leadership (Cantor, Webb, Warner) pressing for drilling and though I had called the House Speaker's office regarding her comments regarding the Catholic faith I believe were not only inappropriate but factaully wrong, but also learned that the Speaker position on drilling will not waver no matter the destruction that Hurrciane Ike may leave in its wake. After moments of silence, her office's view is it is just another reason for renewables and not more drilling.

Silence then ignorance.

We do not even have all the things in place yet to make the move to renewables and it is as if they hope that the drilling industry suffers catastrophic devastation at some point so that they continue playing political chess on the energy issue.

Democrats are opening the door for Gov. Sarah Palin and her energy knowledge to walk right on in and fill the void for America on the real issues of energy as in is apparent that the leadership in Congress has completely failed to address the issue on behalf of all Amercians.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

9/11 Anniversary: Political-Free Day

As we all know, today marks seven years since the attacks on 9/11 and though the impact of that day has never left us, we hold in our hearts all of those families that have suffered as a direct result, and must endeavor to continue to honor all those and their families that have sacrificed.

Today should be a political-free day and all political-orientated bloggers should stand down.

And that is exactly what Alter of Freedom will do.

To thy brothers around the world; Semper Fi.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Public Policy Polling: North Carolina

While we wait for the next PPP polling data for the Commonwealth of Virginia, it is very interesting to see the shift undertaken to our south in North Carolina since Sen. John McCain selected Gov. Sarah Palin has his running mate.

The Democrats have for many months seen Virginia, North Carolina and Georgia as electoral votes that they thought Barack Obama would be successful in putting in play before the General Election. Remember the 50 State Strategyalluded to in the Primary.

It appears as though, for now, that the selection of Palin may have thrown a wrinkle in those plans.

Latest polling data has demonstrated a shift in NC to John McCain 48-44. This follows Florida's PPP data moving McCain to 50-45. We are still waiting to learn what the latest shift in the Virginia and Georgia polls will be, but based on the turnout today in Fairfax, Virginia, a heavily pro-Democrat area, I would expect some real fireworks on the way.

Many pundits are calling Virginia, like North Carolina a few weeks ago, too close to call. That said, Barack Obama has been losing ground in many polls throughout the country since the GOP Convention conlcuded. In Michigan for example, the PPP data has Obama leading now 47-46 whereas many pundits, especially MSNBC's, were given Michigan to Obama as late as last week. McCain is gaining in Ohio as well.

So whats up?

Simple. Its the small town and rural community vote that is fueling McCain/Palin's rise in the polls.

In North Carolina; Obama trails the McCain/Palin ticket 58-32 in rural areas. In the suburbs Obama is leading 48-47 and Obama also commands the urban areas 62-33. The problem is there are alot more rural areas scattered throughout the State and according to the data 7% of those in small towns/rural areas are still undecided.

The other troubling data point is in the latest PPP NC data:

49% respondents were Democrats and McCain earned 18% of that vote and 44% of the Independent vote

Another interesting data point is the Senate race in NC:

Elisabeth Dole (R) had been trailing K. Hagan throughout much of the year but as of this poll she has narrowed Hagan's lead to 43-42 and picked up 3% since the Palin announcement and the Governor's race is virtually a dead heat as well.

Given that 49% of respondents were Democrat and 36% were republican with 15% Independent, it appears as though McCain is taking just enough conservative Democrats and enough Independents to throw him over the top in NC.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Fairfax Partisanship Exposed: McCain/Palin Rally Moved

Just when you think that you have seen it all, leave it to the Democrats to ellevate the level of political partisanship to new heights. Having been born at Fairfax Hospital I feel an attachment to the County even today, but the County has forever changed both in politics and evidently civility.

The Mccain/Palin campaign had planned on holding a campaign rally on Wednesday at Fairfax High's Field House which would have been able to seat roughly 6,000 supporters, but Fairfax /Sully Democrats with the help of School Board officials demanded that the Republican rally not be allowed to take place on the school property.

Now I have heard about seperation of church and state, but seperation of state and state. The hypocrisy of these Democrats is quite evident in the context that Barack Obama is speaking today at the Lebanon High School gymnasium in Southwest Virginia today and back in June he spoke at a Bristol High School as well and many high school age students were in attendance.

What is it about NOVA Democrats that they felt so threatened by such a rally and those of us elsewhere in Virginia have very little issue with open rallies and town hall meetings?

Talk about major double standards by the Democrats in Fairfax. We all know if it had been Obama seeking the use of the Fairfax Field House there would have been little issue by the School Board who cited "school system policy" and was worried that high school age students should not be included, though they were invited to attend by the GOP and ask to sho support by wearing red to school on Wednesday if they were so inclined. Obviously, the Democrats felt that these students were ill-prepared to handle such a rally.

An yet, one student from Fairfax chimed how he was eighteen and would be eligible to vote and even serve the country but the school system would not allow him or his peers the opportunity to listen to a Presidential nominee.

Talk about shameful. We want our children to learn to be engaged in the process and yet these so-called Democrats prefer to promote true partisanship. Way to set the example to our young people Fairfax. Way to put politics before the process.

I call on the McCain/Obama campaigns to come "downstate" as the liberals in NOVA call here, we would be glad to accept either campaign here as we move the greatest debate of a generation forward to the election this Fall.

The response by Republicans has been overwhelming from "downstate" as well at the McCain Victory HQ and the rally has been moved to Van Dyck Park in Fairfax, which certainly will accomodate considrable more people than the Field House.

The more the Democrats- at least the liberal ones anyway- pull this kind of crap the more average Virginians will rally behind John McCain and Sarah Palin.

This action by those in Fairfax is rather Un-Virginian in my book in the tradition of Patrick Henry and others and frankly goes against every tradition we as Virginians hold dear.

Sen Joe Biden, Nancy Pelosi: Faith not Science? Follow-up

This is a follow-up to a the previous post "Sen. Joe Biden: Faith not Science?" that was posted following an interview that Sen. Biden gave Tom Brokaw on Meet the Press Sunday. One of the premises to Mr. Brokaw's probing on the issue of life was a direct result of comments Rep. Nancy Pelosi made just a week or so before stated that:

"church leaders (Pelosi is Catholic) for centuries hadnot been able to agree on when life begins"

If you reference the previous post you will find that Sen. Joe Biden followed this week with:

"as a matter of faith life begins with conception"

I am astonished, but not surprised, the mainstream media has not thought that this correlating statements by two high ranking Democrats deserve more examination. Well, apparently the Catholic Church has made that determination and have in fact rebuked Biden and Pelosi, both Catholic, for the views expressed representing views/positions of the Catholic faith.

House Speaker Pelosi stated that "we don't know" when life begins and "so I don't think anybody can tell you when life begins, human life begins" and she further went on to say that "the Catholic Church for centuries has been discussing this".

The Catholic Church's doctrine committee has criticized House Speaker Pelosi for "misrepresenting the history and nature of the authentic teaching of the Catholic Church on abortion" and Cardinal Justin Rigali of Philadelphia, an area that will be hotly contested by both campaigns this Fall for Pennsylvania's electoral votes stated:

"the teaching has not changed and remains unchangeable, direct abortion, that is to say, abortion willed either a s an end or a means, is gravely contrary to the moral law....the church's moral teaching never justified or permitted abortion at any stage of development."

The Church went on to say;

"In keeping with this modern understanding (ie the science) the church teaches that from the time of conception (fertilization) each member of the human species must be given the full respect due to a human person, beginning with the respect for the fundamental right to life"

In fact some bishops charge that "the right to choose" is simply an alibi that contradicts Christian and Catholic belief.

While it is not my intent to argue in favor or in opposition to the right to choose, I would like our media to examine the critical thinking that in my view appears void of any logic these politicians use in making these statements.

I was directly asked in college in Cell Biology exactly when life begins and how it begins so I find it that the so-called cream of the crop in Congress in our nation are so science-challenged that they cannot address the issue on a fatual basis.

These two leaders are Catholics who fail to be advocates for the culture of life and as a fellow Catholic it is disturbing at the lack of resolve these Catholics have on the issue and they weaken the Church's moral grounding by not remaining true to the real traditions of the Church.

While there certainly are underlining issues, the greatest issue to me is the complete ignorance, either intentional or not, these leaders in Congress have regarding this line of rhetoric directed at when life begins.

I would much rather of these leaders make the case for the "right" and why it should be a "right" based on intellectual integrity and not this, as Barack Obama says "made-up stuff" these leaders are presenting to our nation.

The facts are and the science is simple:

Conception=Fertilization= Human Life

Any arguement that "we don't know" when life begins is not only misleading but out right ignorant of science and ignorant as to what we are teaching in our educational system throughout the country.

If you are not noticed, these blips hurt the Democrats as the latest polling as shown an increase in % of John McCain's current support amongst Catholics nationally polled now at 70% up sharply from early summer.

In Virginia:
73% of declared Pro-Life voters and 30% of Pro-Choice voters support a McCain/Palin ticket

Monday, September 8, 2008

Survey USA polling for Virginia: McCain inches Up

The lastest Survey/USA poll conducted for Virginia was conducted (9/5 - 9/7) for weeks after its previous poll which revealed Barack Obama was polling greater than John McCain. The latest poll illustrates a small move by McCain, who now leads Obama in the Commonwealth 49% to 47%.

Frankly, I am waiting for the next Public Policy Polling results to come in in large part because the Survey/USA poll is only a spectrum of 900 respondents of which 807 were registered but only 717 were deemed likely voters.

One interesting point was that both candidates apear to be losing 10% of voters from their own declared Party and Obama earned 15% of the self-declared conservative vote and McCain earned 11% of the liberal vote.

Some of the data:

54% males supported McCain 43% Obama
43% females supported McCain 51% Obama
59% of whites supported McCain 37% Obama
84% of African-Amercians support Obama 14% McCain
73% pro-life support McCain 24% Obama
65% pro choice support Obama 30% McCain

55% of Indepedents McCain 34% Obama
6% polled still undecided


42% of respondents "could change mind" Obama
39% of respondents "could change mind" McCain

51% "mind made up" McCain
47% "mind made up" Obama

The map:

The map appears to be very similar to past elections in terms of likely support.

Barack Obama:
Will need to hold John McCain to a modest 25% or less in NOVA where Obama holds his strongest base of support. Barack will reap rewards of newly registered voters and should strongly hold; City of Richmond, Norfolk, Hampton Road, parts of Newport News area and will need to shore up large young voter turnout in Williamsburg (W&M), Christopher Newport, Old Dominion, University of Virginia, Virginia Tech for example to offset gains Mccain may have with older vote in those areas. The I64 corridor should offset McCains numbers in Norfolk (military, veterans) and Va Beach. Obama will need greater turnout in Suffolk to offset Chesepeake. Some have predicted Chesepeake to be split, but I think McCain now is seeing his registrations rising from new conservative voters following the Pat Robertson line. In fact many of these evangelicals are younger ones as well.

John McCain:

Will focus Wednesday in Fairfax, Va at his rally on meesages directed at military, veterans, moderates and independents. Though the rally is in Fairfax, his message will be broader. McCain should secure SW Virginia and much of the I81 corridor of the Valley. He will pick up most of his NOVA support in Stafford, Prince William, Spotsylvania and parts of King George, down into Fredericksburg. McCain will need to win with greater margins to offset NOVA numbers of Obama by votes in Chesterfield, Henrico, Goochland, Louisa, Hanover, Caroline, Powhatan, Amelia, Dinwiddie, Prince Edward. McCain will struggle in parts of Prince George with non-military and will lose by greater margins in Petersburg and the City of Richmond that he will need to offset in Central and rural Virginia by those areas down in Danville, South Boston, Lynchburg and Roanoke and the remaining SW counties.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Sen. Joe Biden: Faith not Science?

I have been highly critical of the mainstream media regarding the depth of which they chose to question the record of Senator Joe Biden. Personally, I find Mr. Biden a remarkable politcial figure in our nations history and virtually my entire adult life. I cannot remember a major issue trying our nation at any time in the last twenty years that Joe Biden was not approached for a comment.

When I learned that Sen. Biden would be on Meet the Press this morning, I was confident that Tom Brokaw would be objective and challenge him on the issues as Tim Russert would certainly have. I was sure that Mr. Brokaw would keep in the tradition of the show and not let the interview seem be a talking point one that we have seen all to often this campaign.

The most striking thing I took away from the interview was some deep insight into exactly how it is this Democrat team rationalize their ideals. I was rather shocked to learn that Sen. Biden, a fellow Catholic, would explain his view on abortion as rather a simple view of faith and religion.

Visit here: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21134540/vp/26591154#26591154

The explaination intrigued me. The idea that "life" begins as he states in his view "at conception" is tied to the society which he refers to as a "pluralistic" culture by way of faith and religion seem to be a valid point on balance given the intense nature of the issue of abortion but I was left a little baffled by the fact that this revelation was coming from the Democratic nominee for Vice President. I do not think you would get an arguement from most Americans regarding "conception" or even fertilization but stressing that it is a direct result of ones religious views and one's faith.

Pardon me, but what about Science?

Our young people learn about reproduction, either sexual or asexual, in a science context like biology not in a religious class. And since there are those in our society who prefer not to allow our young people to learn about religious values or history in our public school systems let stick with the science aspect.

The very notion that religion and values is what determines when life begins or is conceived is interesting given all we teach our children. Scientifically we can determine the age of an embryo not by faith or by religion, but by what we know through science. We know exactly how an embryo should progress through its development through science and not faith.

My hope was that Mr. Brokaw would have followed up the response with these basic truths. Birth and delivery while certainly a blessing from God, is performed through the parameters governing the science, in this case the true medical science, that has been universally accepted. Faith does not determine when an egg is fertilized. Are those couples currently undergoing invitro governed by faith or by the science that is the foundation that would permit such fertilization in the first place.

So my first part was a question of science. My life is deeply rooted in faith but objectively to answer a question of abortion by a Democrat I was surprised that the answer was not based more in the science. And I wonder why not?

Could it be that the science simply does not fit the politics? If science tells us that life begins once an egg is fertilized than of course the arguements brought about by many that promote abortion and partial birth seem rather baseless. So science tells us that life actually begins the moment the embryo enters that first stage of development and of course that is what we teach our young people today in any science class.

And yet, Sen. Biden promotes a notion that life begins at conception as a matter of faith. No mention of science.

That said and if true and it is a matter of faith, should we then accept the Democratic platform on global warming and climate change as a matter of "faith". I thought that those strict constructionists regarding climate change always point to the "science" which they say is indisputable. The science behind the issue requires us to address all the issues. They use the science as a matter of principle in their platform. Al Gore's "Inconvenient Truth" as we were told was based completely on science and as a matter of fact the same proponents of this agenda are the ones who oppose the teaching of creationism along with evolution because it is not rooted in science but faith and religion.

Interesting dicotomy.

Barack Obama and Joe Biden would like to use science as a means of support for their specific arguements and positions on various issues, but dismiss it from the issue of abortion and the killing of a human life. Barack Obama thinks the issue is "above his pay grade" with regard to when life starts/begins exactly and apparently Joe Biden is equally confused given is rationalization regarding "as a matter of faith life begins at conception".

No Joe. As a matter of SCIENTIFIC fact LIFE begins with the fertilization process of the egg in the first developmental stages of an embryo and therefore that is when a life is created/begun and if you would like to argue the point regarding the value of a pro-choice platform that is one thing, but do not confuse the basis of life as a question of "faith".

Fact is their position is a psychological apologetic one in that it provides society with an out should they chose an abortion by instilling a line of psychological compassion for taking of a life by disputing whether that life is really a life or not. They have focused the issue of "rights" upon those in the position of power over the individual (the one opting to abort a life) over that of the powerless ( in this case the unborn) by traveling down this line of faith and religion and since we live in a pluralistic society we have to respect all points of view on this from differing religions.

No Joe.

That is why we use science as a convenant in the first place and our laws should reflect that regardless of religious ideology. Apply the same accepted scientific principles that you so readily apply to other aspects of the Democratic platform and determine to be consistent in how you base your political ideology.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Raising Kaine: Using Sexism and Racism

As a Virginian, I have absolutely no issue with people who wish to tout whatever their agenda is from whatever soapbox they wish to tout it but it really reveals alot about the the real nature of teh current culture war being fought.

I do not recall such viseral attacks against Joe Biden upon his selection as the VP candidate by Barack Obama. I do remember his positions being challenged in the context of Obama's record like the War on Iraq. Joe Biden and Hillary Clinton both supported the War and the fact that Obama did not is a vaild line to draw distinction. I do not recall the level of family attacks brought upon the Biden family as the left has dealt the Sarah Palin family.

Visit sites like Daily Kos and our own Raising Kaine rag and new get the kind of America these folks see as the future. Sexism is fine when it suits there political ends I guess. Sexism is fine in the context of protecting liberalism I guess. Apparently, its not the issues they want to discuss or uncover, its not the policy that they want to debate, its about tearing people down for political expediency. Its about embarking on a path of destruction and laying wake to families for no other purpose than because they like to do it. Why?

The conservative nature of Sarah Palin is obviously a direct threat to what liberals seek to bring about in America over the next decade.

Look I have my views and my own bias but I can come to a point of critical thinking regardling issues where I can see what makes sense in the Obama platform and also what I gravitate towards in the Mccain platform. The differecnes lie in the fact that none of these people behind rags like Raising Kaine want to debate issues, what to solve issues or want to examine the pro and cons of different path regarding solutions. Instead its all or none proposition bound by a refusal to respect anyhting offered up by anyone with an (R) next to their name that border what I would risk calling the next wave of hate in this country.

Did the protestors in Denver destroy property? Did the protestors place police and fire at risk? What does it say about a protest backed by the far left in terms of thei value systems? this has nothing to do with the right to assembly. It goes further than that. In a pro-Democratic town within a pro-Democrat state, they have sought destrcution and mayhem for the benefit of whom exactly?

Now I know I have been very critical of Raising Kaine, but this week demonstrates a level of hate that is reminiscent of the Allen campaign brought about by those behind the blogging community. Its about sound bites and less than factual spins brought about to instill a sense of fear and rally hate in those that would be inclined to exhibit such behavior. Of course, there is no requirement for a blog to be open to all sides and afterall its a online community afterall for liberals but the part that scares this Virginian is that its viewership is increasing.

It is not just an issue of feeling George Bush has failed or that they have a different positions on issues than the nominees of the GOP, its the level of hate and the means to which they will go "knowingly" to ruin or disparage the reputation of someone independent of the issues. The take events that suit their purposes and spin those into a tabloid portrayal of threads that frankly shame all Virginians.

They do not just do these things soley against the GOP. Often they will attack our own Governor whom they feel who them is office with regard to him putting Virginia first and not their agenda on climate change, coal, or matters like the Wise County plant. Its the manner in which they seek to advance their agenda that should be alarming.

Just look how they rationalize how their candidates "qualifications" are somehow rock solid simply based on the fact they are Democrats. They refuse to concede any ground on any issue and in fact reject bipartisanship at all levels.

They have no issue with attacking a woman and her family for political purposes and when the truth is revealed that they got it wrong, like the implication that Sarah Palin's newborn was actually her daughters and not her own, they move on and pass it off as being a "diary" and they are not responsible for "diaries" on the site that the run as a community. They use this a cover frankly in my view.

If someone hung a rope in your yard from a tree in your front yard with a noose who do you think the law and people would come after? Thats right. The homeowner.

You provide a medium for people to dispense hatred then you deserve to be called out for it. There will be an immense backlash in the coming years I feel against such digital plantation owners of these communities that are simply one notch about those skinhead rags in my view. Are not these communities becoming bastions of hate?

Do not get me wrong there are blogging communities on the right that behave in the same manner and need to be called out for their role as well.

The scary aspect of such rags these days is they raise money for Parties and act in the role of a PAC which calls into question whether Parties are using these mediums to do their own "unofficial" bidding. To get rumors viral for their benefit with never having to defend their role in it whatsoever.

This week in a thread over at raising kaine there are a variety of Sarah Palin threads that offer up baseless allegations like "baby wolf killer" without any backstory as a mean of firing up animal rights folks against Palin. What they do not tell you is it was the Native Peoples of Alaska and the Tribal Adminstration that sought the ordinance to reduce the wolf population after results from the Alaska Virology Lab confirmed that there was an increase in rabied among the Elmendorf Wolf Pack that was attacking not only dogs but people as well. Areas like Marshall, AK actually ordered an alert status regarding children in the community and a curfew in the town in response. RK and the liberals seek to tie these ordinances to reduce the wolk population as the measures of "flatearthers" and "anti-environmentalists" when the order had nothing to do with oil but the safety of the areas in question. This is just one example of the twist and bend effect with no evidence or backstory provided.

Another is how they portray Governors as having no real command of the National Guard units as they seek to diminish the record or any achievement or qualification of Sarah Palin. These same folks had no issue with touting Gov. Kaines though in this area when he was a potential VP selection. Kaine, a former Mayor, even has to find this line of attack against Palin laughable. As they contend that Palin has never done "anything" in terms of the Alaskan National Guard they demonstrate their complete void of facts and intelligence. Control of the Guard is within the Executive Authority of every State Constitution in the Union. A Governor is responsible for the Guard and appoint all of its General and Flag officers whioch are confirmed by the State legislature. The Federal government for deployment purposes requests units from States which goes through the Governor's office and yet they contend that palin has nothing to do with her Guard units at all. Void of truth and void of intelligence.

If you try to explain this to those liberals you points fall on deaf ears and occaisionally you will get the honorable "troll"rating for challenging their warped talking point agenda baseless of any facts. Its a badge of honor frankly.

The other day, Lowell Feld, one of the founders of Raising Kaine, participated in a thread and stated the reason why there was just a disparity between the recent Mark Warner polling data where he was polling 7o% of the vote and Barack Obama's 47% in his race against McCain was racism. With no facts or evidence in hand from respondents from the Public Policy poll , his simple conclusion was Virginians not supporting Barack Obama who are supporting Mark warner are those who are "racist".

Racist? Really? So with no evidence and no facts it is rational to call 23% of those respondents "racist" simply because they feeled compelled to support Mark Warner but not Barack Obama.


It could not be that a majority of Virginians are conservative and find Mark Warner a moderate Virginia Democrat and find Barack Obama an ultra-liberal aligned with the agenda of the folks at Raising Kaine could it?


Could it be an overwhelming number of Virginians either are veterans or have veterans in their families here in Virginia and believe John McCain's service to our country, which of course the liberals dismiss b/c his military service occurred in an unpopular war that they did not support by the way, makes him a remarkable person and candidate in this election when compared to Barack Obama's lack of military service or experience?


Really Lowell? If you could back that up with some actual facts and evidence that would be wonderful, otherwise how about not alienating small town Virginians from the Democratic Party and insulting conservative Democrats who are attracted to Mark Warner's message and not your message of division and hate promoted on Raising Kaine against the wonderful people of the Commonwealth.

I could care less if someone is Democrat, Republican, Liberal or Conservative in the context of this because we are all Virginians.

Mr. Feld, you and the Raising Kaine community may seek to turn Virginia into the next Maryland as you and the diarists jhave promoted in the past, but I believe most Virginians reject you and your tact on principle.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Olbermann & Mathews diminish Profession and even Woodrow Wilson

You have to admit if you thought that the liberal media was going to play fair, you know the so-called "fairness Doctrine" advocates than maybe the mothpieces of the Democratic Party ought actaully validate or in this case "vett" their commentary.

As Keith Olbermann , fired from Fox Network after being fired from ESPN and Chris Mathews take lead from the Daily Kos as what appears to be their only source and apparently the new research department of MSNBC they get caught playing their own version of hardball with the facts.

Make no mistake. The allegiances of Mathews and Olbermann are easily transparent. But to follow the daily Kos line of attack against Gov. Sarah Palin and the validity of her childs suffering from down syndrome actually being born to Mrs. Palins daughter and not her not only crosses the line but the two and MSNBC as a whole appear ready to advance other talking points by the daily Kos without any fact checking of their own.

Olbermann and Mathews inform its viewers that Sarah Palin was a member of the Alaskan Independence Party and actively sought the seccession of Alaska from the lower 48. The source that would prompt this prime time relevation would be the blog Daily Kos and of course they ran with it.

As it turnd out the Daily Kos, the blog that sponsored its conferecne in which the likes of Obama and Clinton attended in the Spring, in anattempt to smear Gov. Sarah Palin on the internet failed to inform MSNBC that its information was purely fictitious; okay completely made up.

Any apologies or retractions? Of course not, you see MSNBC is an opinion medium not a news medium. Its "The Place for Politics" alright, the place as they see it. Not only have they engaged in rumors and inuendo against Gov. Palin but have even gone after her 17 year old daughter Bristol.

Apparently they would like to "vett" Bristol Palin and her boyfriend more so than Barack Obama. They make no mention that Barack Obama backstory his he to was conceived out of wedlock and born in 1961 to an 18 year old. After 19 months on the campaign trail and that was not apparently news worthy enough to make any of the daily shows on MSNBC and yet all now they talk about is Palin's daughter determination to keep her child and somehow make that out to be sensational.

Later in the night the two discuss parts of Thompson's speech and reference his views regarding Barack Obama being the "most liberal and most inexperiencned nominee" in modern history responded with asking what Republicans would have thought about Woodrow Wilson's experience as solely a college professor from Princeton? Implication being he was th least experienced.

Well Keith and Chrsi if you studied up before you spoke you might have learned that Woodrow Wilson was Governor of New Jersey in 1910 before running for President. Governor. So Wilson had three years "Executive Experience" fellas and that still makes your guy Barack Obama the least experience nominee.

No fact checking, no "vetting" of the truth, just partisan off the cuff hacks against two incredible Americans.

MSNBC continues to not only embarrass the "news: division of NBC and diminish any faith people have in modern journalism but I wonder just how long Tom Brokov and Brian Williams can continue with the course of this network. These men have had respectable careers as true journalists and gentlman and their legacy at NBC is being tarnished by the networks new political hacks.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Independent Labor Day BBQ: Moving Red & Blue

While the mainstream media and Washington insiders seek to advance agendas or perpuate the divisive nature of modern politics for their own personal gain, many Americans are beginning to tune out such mediums and hunker down in terms of this election season.

Speaking with quite a few Virginia conservatives, both Democrat and Republican, and Independents at the Labor Day BBQ and cookout it has become obvious that the middle is rejecting the politics of division and committing to making determinations as to what is best for the country and not respective Parties.

People need to understand that it is in their best interest to put their communities first and not look to Washington as the place that should be shaping our lives. Certainly, the nations capital plays a role but those that impact our daily lives the most are those local leaders that rarely if ever get held accountable for actions taken that directly effect our schools, roads, safety, and quality of life.

What we learn with having civil discussions within the community independent of forced ideological differences by those forces that seek to profit from such divisions created the Parties is that in most of us all seek the same things for our lives and our families. Everyone wants our children to be provided the very best opportunities to succeed, that our neighborhoods are as safe as possible, that our elderly or respected and cared for, that our roads and infrastructure are funded, and that their is a balance between the contribution of the business community and the individual in terms of tax revenues to fund budgets.

Citizens want leadership not politics. In 2006, citizens voiced opposition to the status quo only to hand over Congress to the same crowd that simply wears a different hat. The past two years we have witnessed the most incompetent leadership in Washiongton, both in the Congress and in the White House. There is varying degrees that everyone will agree, but there is no denying that Washington is broken on every level.

Citizens cannot sit idlely by and allow their County or City governments to go the same way. We have seen the problems in the City of Richmond that has disturbed many residents and triggered the overwhelming rejection of Regionalism in the greater Richmond area. Taking government back does not begin with lofty rhetoric but with real change and real leadership whose only vested interest is moving the country and its future in the right direction.

This election will be all about faith. Not faith in the traditional mainstream media portrayal but faith in the men and woman we elect to office on a real personal level. We have to be confident in the individual that they truly represent change and are willing to work for change regardless of the personal and political cost. These leaders should be servants of the will of the people and not the will of a few Party bosses.

My concensus is in talking with folks is that most Virginians that are true conservatives or at least lean that way feel they have two ways to express what they feel the direction should be and what the focus should be through our upcoming elections. Its is apparent that these Virginia conservatives and Independents will be supporting:

President: John S. McCain/ Sarak Palin (R)
Senate: Mark Warner (D)

Indepedents have always seen McCain as one of the champions, but the backlash to the media constant attacks on Sarah Palin are moving Conservatives (both Democrat and Republican) to McCain as well. Of course, the social conservative wing of the GOP here in Virginia embrace Mrs. Palin, but I think that the national groups are underestimating the quality of judgement that Virginians display in Presidential elections. It reinforces why Virginia can have a Democratic Governor and Assembly at times and still support Republicans for President. The mainstream media like to place Virginia up as a toss-up State for the upcoming election, but frankly I think they are misjudging the overall will of the people and are banking on the center made up of conservatives of both Parties and Independents moving toward Barack Obama.

There is absolutely no sign of that happening on the ground. Liberals will point to the latest polls where Obama is beating McCain before his selection of Palin 47-45, but 26% of those responding are Independents and 8% are Undecided and the same respondents say that 75% of them (Democrats, Republicans, Independents combined) support Mark Warner for US Senate.

Why? You will not find any explaination from the left or its blogs nor will you at major media outlets because now in August it does not serve their agenda. In fact, it undermines it. If Virginia is such a toss-up State, how can there be such a disparity between the number of folks supporting Mark Warner and those Obama from the same polling pool?

The answer? The middle/center of Virginia conservatives. Most Independents are conservatives in ideology not liberal, but on many issues are closer to the libertarian point of view on issues or have left the GOP in rejection of the GOP platforms focus ona pure pro-life agenda which they may reject but are aligned on a greater number of other issues than they are with the liberal, controlling arm of the Democrat Party.

Mark Warner has proven to conservatives his ability to govern from a moderate point of view on balance. People realize that he raised taxes, but also that on balance as a Democrat he is on the complete opposite end than say an Obama or Howard Dean. His speech at the convention reinforced this idea. He spoke of bipartisanship.

If the center supports and gets John McCain elected, who better to work with a McCain administration than a moderate Democrat over a Jim Gilmore who represents the far right of the Virginia GOP. I ask many people here, "downstaters" as the liberals in NOVA like to passionately call us all, if Tom Davis would have made a difference and most folks answered Yes.

Tom Davis in my view would have appealed greater to the center and all Virginia conservatives than Gilmore has and with any surge in McCain's numbers would have helped the GOP in that Senate race. The insiders dealt their hand and in the end they will suffer for it from a political perspective. In short, for a majority of the center to have voted against a Warner campaign, Tom Davis should have been the selection.

That said though. There is no indication from conservative I speak with daily that Mark Warner is delivering those that support him over to supporting Barack Obama. The case has not and is not being made by the Warner campaign as they have within the scope of Virginia shifted to the Obama lines of attacks in an attempt to get behind Obama which is alienating the center from supporting Obama. Fact is, they know Warner and have connected with him on issues but not Obama. The more they learn about the platform the less inclined it seems they are to embrace Barack Obama.

Throw in the attacks, personal and political, by the media and blogs against Sarah Palin and the anarchists marching on a Convention is such a destructive manner that most Americans find dispicable spells real trouble with conservatives.

So, Virginians are moving both Red (Presidential) and Blue(Senate) all the while this goes unnoticed by the mainstream media who just a few short months ago were stating how Democrats Kaine and Warner and Webb would deliver Virginia to the Obama camp and support a Democrat for the first time in virtually thirty years. It was a great talking point to influence the "change" mantra brought about by the favorable media coverage of Obama back then but the reality on the ground it seems is not working in that way frankly.

When we turn our focus on this election and the debates, we need to make sure that we do not forget or take our eye of those leaders here at home that are impacting our lives with EVERY vote they cast.

In speaking with those from Chesterfield ,I know we have alot of work to do here in getting our County back on track and while the current Board of Supervisors may be in its infancy there is a large amount of frustration with the direction the Board is moving. More on this to follow.