Saturday, November 8, 2008

Thank God

As SusanG points out at Daily Kos, elections have consequences.
Okay, sometimes the WaPo tells us what we need to know.
Transition advisers to President-elect Barack Obama have compiled a list of about 200 Bush administration actions and executive orders that could be swiftly undone to reverse the president on climate change, stem cell research, reproductive rights and other issues, according to congressional Democrats, campaign aides and experts working with the transition team.
A team of four dozen advisers, working for months in virtual solitude, set out to identify regulatory and policy changes Obama could implement soon after his inauguration. The team is now consulting with liberal advocacy groups, Capitol Hill staffers and potential agency chiefs to prioritize those they regard as the most onerous or ideologically offensive, said a top transition official who was not permitted to speak on the record about the inner workings of the transition.

Stu Rasmussen

Found her on Megafilter today, just the random ramble looking for found, shiny objects.
Funny thing is, though, last night I saw a local production of the Pulitzer winning "I Am My Own Wife," and it was a brilliantly written and acted account of a German tranny who survived both Nazis and E. German Stazis.
Anyway, Stu has been active in Silverton, OR, business and city politics for two decades, but only recently discovered his true nature, or at least what it meant. They elected her mayor anyway.

Bush's Legal (IL)Legacy: What Next?

Ah, the always relevant McClatchy. I thought they'd never ask. It is, after all, four days since the election. (Just kidding, I know the NYT and WaPo intend to get around to it. Yeah.)
...Obama might sidestep the controversy with the Bush administration's help. If President Bush issues pre-emptive pardons to prevent prosecutions, the Obama administration should form a bipartisan panel, similar to the Sept. 11 commission, to oversee an inquiry, he said. Once pardoned, officials implicated in the controversy would be required to discuss details of the policies because they'd be unable to assert their Fifth Amendment right to avoid self-incrimination.

Quote O' Teh Day

From a comment thread at Boing Boing responding to a New Yorker article on psychopaths.
It reminds me of a friend of mine, who opened a new way of seeing for me when he remarked, "It's all chemistry."
I suspect he's abandoned that viewpoint, but I remain a reluctant convert.
Humans are just another physical system, interacting in complex ways with their surroundings, not metaphysically separable into a different kind of stuff at all.

Saturday Cat Blogging

Maru is today's featured feel-good at Boing-Boing. With good reason.

There are more at BB and a link to Maru's blog.

Taplin Says

there's hope, and sets a timeline. At least one commenter disagrees.
With a bit of luck, a great deal of skillful fiscal stimulus and riding the normal business cycle, I think the economy will begin to recover by the 4th quarter of 2009. By the fall campaign season of 2010, the Congressional Democrats should have the wind at their backs and drive the Republicans into true minority status.

One Way To Face The Recession

Krugman notes what should be happening and that Obama has promised action. I have to say I got so sick of the R's in my little blue state at the far northwest corner of the country accusing the Democratic governor of overspending and planning new taxes that I wanted to throw up. Maybe not that, but something.
Anyway, here we go.
Right now, we’re seeing a sharp drop in state revenues, which is going to lead to big cutbacks in spending and tax increases at exactly the wrong time.
Obama mentioned aid to state and local governments in his press conference yesterday. Indeed. This is a very quick form of fiscal stimulus, because it’s not about starting new spending, it’s about sustaining current spending. It should be done immediately.
But what if Bush says no? Congress should pass the aid plan anyway, and Obama should promise to sign it as soon as the current tenant vacates the White House. That way states will know that the money is coming, and be able to budget accordingly.

McCain Making the Rounds: Conan Last Night

Rahm! Obama's In Love

Here's the Emanuel roast at the epilepsy fundraiser organized by the Axelrods (the David and Susan that Obama refers to.)
The 'sphere loves this, it's all over.

Once Again, I Give You

the inimitable Gail Collins. (I read them so you don't have to.)

In the good old days, victorious politicians did not have to worry about currying good will. Their defeated opponents were sent to work out their issues in the Libyan salt mines. That doesn’t happen much anymore, so let’s try to be gracious.

Sure, it was an intense campaign. Of course, regrettable things were said in the heat of the moment. My mother and my sister Patti, for instance, had an argument about the prospects of the local Republican congressman that culminated in my mother betting her house that he would be re-elected. But when he lost, Patti generously announced that she had decided to let Mom stay in residence. I think this is the spirit we should all be trying to emulate.

Still, there is a fine line between good sportsmanship and being played for a sucker. I am thinking of McCain’s other BFF, Senator Joseph Lieberman, who not only endorsed the Republican ticket and spoke at the Republican convention but also said, in the course of the campaign, that unlike McCain, Obama did not always put his country first. Since Lieberman is part of the Senate Democratic caucus, all this is not normal like squirrels climbing trees. It’s more like squirrels breaking into your house and setting fire to the sofa.

Friday, November 7, 2008

And In Other News

— Barney the Bush Dog tried to bite a reporter today

— Final vote count will give Obama an electoral vote from Nebraska, one of only two states that allocates the EVs by Congressional district

— Rahm is a former ballet dancer and, "some say" at least he's our asshole

Besides The Pretty Lady

from Michigan, there were a lot of economic heavy hitters lined up behind No Drama today.
David Bonior (Member House of Representatives 1977-2003)

· Warren Buffett (Chairman and CEO, Berkshire Hathaway)-will participate via speakerphone

· Roel Campos (former SEC Commissioner)

· William Daley (Chairman of the Midwest, JP Morgan Chase; Former Secretary, U.S. Dept of Commerce, 1997-2000)

· William Donaldson (Former Chairman of the SEC 2003-2005)

· Roger Ferguson (President and CEO, TIAA-CREF and former Vice Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve)

· Jennifer Granholm (Governor, State of Michigan)

· Anne Mulcahy (Chairman and CEO, Xerox)

· Richard Parsons (Chairman of the Board, Time Warner)

· Penny Pritzker (CEO, Classic Residence by Hyatt)

· Robert Reich (University of California, Berkeley; Former Secretary, U.S. Dept of Labor, 1993-1997)

· Robert Rubin (Chairman and Director of the Executive Committee, Citigroup; Former Secretary, U.S. Dept of Treasury, 1995-1999)

· Eric Schmidt (Chairman and CEO, Google)

· Lawrence Summers (Harvard University; Managing Director, D.E. Shaw; Former Secretary, U.S. Dept of Treasury, 1999-2001)

· Laura Tyson (Haas School of Business, University of California, Berkeley; Former Chairman, National Economic Council, 1995-1996; Former Chairman, President's Council of Economic Advisors, 1993-1995)

· Antonio Villaraigosa (Mayor, City of Los Angeles)

· Paul Volcker (Former Chairman, U.S. Federal Reserve 1979-1987)

All very interesting but even more fun is the grousing by some TPM commenters that Granholm isn't enough of a brain to be in the company of the rest. They don't mention the mayor of L.A. because that could conceivably be racist.

So then somebody goes and gets Granholm's bio from Wiki and, sure enough, she was a beauty queen, and is also a Harvard law grad. Heh.

Sexism is alive and well in the 'sphere, but not, apparently, on the transition team.

Poor Us

Just bookmark The Onion, willya?

Obama Win Causes Obsessive Supporters To Realize How Empty Their Lives Are

Incoming! Christmas, Recession. Kaboom!

Possibly the best blog post I've yet seen from Jon Taplin, a man whose links and respect for connectivity inspire me.
Unfortunately for all of us, it was the new and different this time that just happened to be vital. It is therefore ironic that we fire these top CEOs when the trouble hits. The headline should read: “Come back, leaders of Merrill, Citi, Bear, and Lehman. All is forgiven (for a while).” The typical CEO is precisely equipped to deal with emergencies and digging out. Thus, Paulson was just the man to miss the point, but equally just the man – or at least a typically good one – to deal with a complicated crisis under stress.

So maybe Larry Summers isn't such a bad pick for SecTreas after all?


Patrick Moberg via Andrew Sullivan. Kewl. Click to enlarge.

President-Elect's First Press Conference/Liveblogging

UPDATE: From this day forward, it is President-Elect No Drama (and very little enlightenment)

I haven't tried liveblogging since Oscar night, and that was a lot of fun because I found the pictures of the most out rageous outfits (I'm looking at you Tilda (Swenson) Swinton, Daniel Day Lewis and wife, Arthur Miller's daughter).
I figure I'm as qualified to parse all this as the Village people with their hairdos and expensive suits. (I want all of Leslie Stahl's suits, only I will also need her body to pull it off.)

(C-Span announced Byrd is "stepping down" from Senate Apprpriations. Quired, actually. He's now loony tunes.)

Big O--Big Ears, Ears, what will we call him?
Who's that pretty lady behind him.
Ease credit crisis, help hardworking families, restore growth. Heh.
Ram's there, hands on hips, ready to fight.
Joe's arms are folded.
1. Rescue plan for middle class, jobs, extention of unemployment insurance (good for my friedn Barb, laid off today)
2. Spreading impact on other parts of economy, small biz, local and state govts
global response
auto industry hardship---suppliers, small biz, communities that depend, backbone on Am. mfg
--admins should accelerate retooling assistance
--produce fuel efficient cars (pretty lady is Gov. Granholm of Mich)
---review implementation of admin's asstc, not unduly reward the financial criminals (okay, he didn't say criminals)
gorw middle class and strengthen eonomy in long term, can't afford to wait
Close---task is enormous, difficult choices, wont' be quick or easy
can succeed if put aside partisanship and politics "that's what I intend to do"
? first 100 days, priorities day one
O--transition team will monitor, need a stimulus package, focus on jobs, asstc to state and local govts
(none of this is detailed answer, )
? stimulus pkg in troule this year---
O--wants sooner rather than later, otherwise first thing he gets done as pres
?--Iran pres congrats, did you respond, how soon envoys to people we haven't been talking to
O--I's deve of nukes is unacceptable, suppt of terr has to "cease", sill review letter, respond appropriately
"we only have one pres at a tiem" ...I am not the pres and won't be until jan 20
?mtg with B on Monday, when disagree will you confront, openly disagree?
O--expects substantive conversation, won't anticipate problems, spirit of bipartisanship
difference inevitable, "critical tone" is Am. people need help, econ in bad shape, just completed longest election cycles in history time to set aside politics
?two wars in fin crisis, move quickly to fill crucial financial cabinet posts
O--will announce "I want to emphaize deliverate as well as haste"
not to rush
?John McCormick (from Chicago)---fill his senate seat-
O--gov's decision, criteria same as voter, capable, passionate hlpg working families
?Lynn Sweet--Chicago--cracked her shouldre running to his Grant Park speech
what doing to get ready, what kind of dog, private or public school?
O--has spoken to all living former presidents, reread some of Lincoln, all pres been very gracious,
the dog "this is a major issue" -- two criteria, Malia is allergic, so has to be hypoallergenic, pref for shelter dog (A lot of shelter dogs are mutss like me)
--Michelle will scout out schools
?(where's Helen?) state of U.S. intel,
O--If there was something i'd heard, I couldn't tell you
intel process has gotten better, beyond that, shouldn't comment
?income tax increases for rich -- "my tax plan represented a net tax cut"
all designed for job and econ growth---over next weeks and month will continue to look at data

didn't answer, end of conference

Well, if this is the way it's going to go, it's essentially weak, meatless, unspiced chili. President No Drama. Yeah, that's it.
If you watched it, what did you think?

When I first heard that the Obama's had pledged to get shelter dog, I felt Malia is too young to be forced to be politically correct. But from what Dad said today, my guess is she gets the Labradoodle she wants, which is also what I want. But I'll take a Westie.

TPM Ponders An Unusually United Democratic Future

And its own in the process.
Here's Josh reminding us what we've experienced:
For more than half a century before 1992, the Democratic party was actually two parties, even after the Civil Rights movement cleared the old-style segregationists and neo-dixiecrats from the party -- a national party and a southern one, a fact that created conservative governing majorities on numerous issues. What's more, both Clinton and Carter ran on platforms of bucking their party and its entrenched congressional majorities. For both these reasons and many others, what will begin in January is something this country hasn't really seen since the first half of the 20th century...
...Think of us, in that sense, as an insiders' publication for outsiders, which is how I've always thought of us.
Some of the glories of TPM past include the Social Security privitization fight and the USAGs' firings, which mainstream news people dismissed as irrelevant and which turned out to be one of the most blatant scandals of the administration.
I learned to rely on TPM and still do. If you never look at another political blog, keep TPM as your daily read.

Transition Web Site

Is apparently quite radical, as McCain predicted.
According to TPM, the flow charts has the president apparently answering to the Constitution and the v.p. is now in the executive branch. Heh.

Contrarienne Is Back

Through no fault of her own. Qwest Internet service was down since about this time yesterday and only came back a couple hours ago. I shudder to think how the businesses effected felt about it. Luckily, Contrarienne make no money whatsoever from this endeavor, and the outage allowed her to sort her overdue bills and otherwise clean up the kitchen counter.
I guess you already know Emanuel took the Chief of Staff job.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Who Is Obama?

One commenter at TPM offers a pretty succinct description that I happen to agree with.
Barack Obama is a temperamental conservative. He is cautious in his approach, measured in his rhetoric, and consensual in his style. Perhaps even more strikingly, he holds tenaciously to his positions in the face of the vicissitudes of politics. The hallmark of his campaign has been his consistency. These are Burkean virtues. But he applies these personal traits to the furtherance of a decidedly liberal agenda. His goals - expanding healthcare, caring for the environment, widening educational and economic opportunity - are of a piece with the Democratic agenda of the past century. His methods - focused on markets, individual responsibility, and economic growth - might be more aptly labeled conservative.
Comments are worth a read, too. These people are smart.

Transition, Ch. 2, Econ

Rest assured. Maybe.
There may be just one president at a time, but when it comes to the $700 billion bailout package, Barack Obama’s team is getting a toe in the door.

The Bush Treasury Department says that as it fills senior staff positions in the $700 billion bailout effort on a permanent basis, it will consult with the president-elect’s key economic advisers before he takes office on Jan. 20.

“Treasury recognizes that a smooth transition is in the best interests of the financial markets and is committed to making sure this one is done in a first-rate manner,” said spokeswoman Brookly McLaughlin.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Sen. Gordon Smith, R, Oregon

is the projected loser in his bid for re-election by the local newspaper, The Oregonian of Portland, whose political staff knows more than any outsider how the state's demographics work. Mostly, it's because the areas left to count, blue-blue Eugene and Portland suburbs, are likely to push his opponent over the top.
Merkley, Jeff Merkley, I think.

Three More Dem. Senators?

Franken and Coleman are in a recount and the odds are in Al's favor.
Chambliss in Georgia will have to go into a runoff.
Smith in Oregon may lose his seat once the only uncounted ballots from liberal Democratic areas in Eugene and suburban Portland are tallied.
Oh, wait, then there's Alaska, where Stevens' opponent believes he has a 50/50 shot at pulling it out.

And Harry Reid's having a little chat with Joe Lieberman about that Homeland Security chairmanship.
And there are now five new Democratic senators.

The Most Important Thing About The Transition Plan

is buried in the last sentence of this WaPo story:
Aides will move quickly to begin monitoring the government's various departments and agencies, obtain the necessary security clearances, and keep a close eye on any last-minute attempts by current administration officials to leave a mark on policy after Bush's term ends.


Nation Finally Shitty Enough To Make Social Progress

from The Onion via Andrew Sullivan, who is on a roll this morning. As I've mentioned, he has staff.
Carrying a majority of the popular vote, Obama did especially well among women and young voters, who polls showed were particularly sensitive to the current climate of everything being fucked. Another contributing factor to Obama's victory, political experts said, may have been the growing number of Americans who, faced with the complete collapse of their country, were at last able to abandon their preconceptions and cast their vote for a progressive African-American.
Enlarge Image Shitty Things
After enduring eight years of near constant trauma, the United States is, at long last, ready for equality.
Citizens with eyes, ears, and the ability to wake up and realize what truly matters in the end are also believed to have played a crucial role in Tuesday's election.


Consider This

1. The modern conservative movement began with the crushing defeat of Arizona Sen. Barry Goldwater in the 1964 presidential race. The modern conservative movement ends with the crushing defeat of Arizona Sen. John McCain -- who took Goldwater's Senate seat upon his retirement -- in the 2008 presidential race. 2. Modern liberalism began its implosion with riots in Chicago's Grant Park at the 1968 Democratic Convention. Tonight, modern liberalism is reborn at Chicago's Grant Park, where a black Chicago Democrat will celebrate winning the presidency.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Hello, Chicago

In case you missed it.

Change Gone Come

Yes, it will.

It Was Over 30 Minutes Ago

But I was too busy to notice.
10:17 PM ... Here are the numbers to consider. At present, with the called states of Ohio, Pennsylvania and New Mexico, Obama has 202 electoral votes. If Obama wins California, Oregon and Washington, which have never really been in doubt, he moves to 275. And he wins the presidency.
Okay, I was making chicken curry.


They're calling it for Obama, making it a no-brainer now, but still fun to watch.
By the way, I'd like to remind you all that Contrarienne called 40 people in Ohio last night.


In my part of the world:
About 1:30 pm. the ferryboat, MV Coho, arrived from Victoria, BC just a couple of blocks from where we stood.  RVs and other vehicles poured off the boat and up the street towards us.  Then came six adults carrying rolls of heavy paper in their arms.  They parked their wheeled suitcases near our corner, unrolled their signs, and stepped forward with outreached hands for a handshake and introduction.  We couldn't believe it!!!  These folks had come all the way from Victoria, BC. with their homemade signs to "stand with us".  What a feeling of inspiration and support they gave us.
Their signs said:  "Canada loves Obama", "Victori-us for Obama",  "Canucks 4 Obama".  One lady said "We need America to once again lead by example".  My reply was "And we need Canada".

I Didn't Vote Black, I Voted Irish

From Andrew,
Supporters of US Democratic presidential candidate and Illinois Senator Barack Obama drink as they watch election results from Ollies Hayes Pub on November 4, 2008 in Moneygall, Co Limerick, in Ireland. Historians have unearthed records showing Obama's maternal ancestors lived, worked, married and had children in the Moneygall area more than 150 years ago. Fulmuth Kearney, who is Obama's third great-grandfather, left Moneygall for New York in 1850 to eventually settle in Ohio

Vigo Co, IND. Who Knew?

From TPM:
Democrats are cheered by early numbers showing that Obama holds a healthy lead in Vigo County, a place that one Dem described to us as "the most reliable bellwether county in the country."
"Vigo has only been wrong on president twice since 1892," this Dem enthuses.
A story in the Indy Star concurs, adding that of the most reliable bellwhether counties in the country, Vego "has voted closest to the national margin."
Right now, in Vigo County, Obama is up 57%-42%, with 80% reporting.
More numbers coming.

Exit Polls Are Crap II

That said: (NPR reporting glum GOP in Ohio, where polls just closed)
The head to head exit polls just were sent to the Huffington Post by a Democratic source. These are traditionally unreliable and should be taken with a grain of salt (see: Kerry's winning margins in 2004). For what it's worth, they project a big night for Obama in several of the key swing states.
The states looking good for Obama:
Florida: 52 percent to 44 percent
Iowa: 52 percent to 48 percent
Missouri: 52 percent to 48 percent
North Carolina: 52 percent to 48 percent
New Hampshire: 57 percent to 43 percent
Nevada: 55 percent to 45 percent
Pennsylvania: 57 percent to 42 percent
Ohio: 54 percent to 45 percent
Wisconsin: 58 percent to 42 percent
Indiana: 52 percent to 48 percent
New Mexico: 56 percent to 43 percent
Minnesota: 60 percent to 39 percent
Michigan: 60 percent to 39 percent
The states where McCain is leading in exit polls:
Georgia: 51 percent to 47 percent
West Virginia: 45 percent to 55 percent
Again, as a point of caution, here is what Democratic pollster Stan Greenberg said about exit polls in an interview today with the Huffington Post: "The biggest problem with exit polls is... we do know that young voters are much more likely to do an exit survey and seniors are much less likely to do an exit poll," he said. "So exit polls are heavily waited to young people, which normal bias favors Democrats especially this year."
More here. Remember it's all crap.

And in Other News

At least the NYT hasn't cut staff so badly that no one noticed. This is a very big get for us, I think.
Over the objections of the nation’s television broadcasters and other groups, Federal regulators on Tuesday set aside a disputed slice of radio spectrum for public use, hoping it will lead to low-cost, high-speed Internet access and new wireless devices.

Where Are You Tonight?

The elite, librul, mainstream media is out to PAHTY!
Jim Newell, Wonkette: "I will be at home furiously typing about various "numbers" as they come in, state-by-state, for 500 hours, until I am forced from my home by the race riots. CAN YOU FEEL THE HOPE?"


Indiana closes in 24 minutes! And Kentucky.

Exit Polls Are Crap

Use at your own risk. summarize: exit polls have a much larger margin of error than regular polls, they tend to skew to the Democratic candidate, they proved to be really bad predictors this year, they actually miss a ton of voters, and, ultimately, they can never be reliably sourced. (Believe it or not, I ran across a website yesterday that purported to have exit poll data!)
So, if you must indulge in exit polling data, feel free. Accept it as another part of the election scenery, and do not put a lot of stock -- or pin too many of your hopes -- to these results. I cannot caveat this emptor enough, people.

Nate Says It's Over, So That's, Er, Official

It will be fun to compare once the returns start rolling in. OMG, less than 3 hours!
Our model projects that Obama will win all states won by John Kerry in 2004, in addition to Iowa, New Mexico, Colorado, Ohio, Virginia, Nevada, Florida and North Carolina, while narrowly losing Missouri and Indiana. These states total 353 electoral votes. Our official projection, which looks at these outcomes probabilistically -- for instance, assigns North Carolina's 15 electoral votes to Obama 59 percent of the time -- comes up with an incrementally more conservative projection of 348.6 electoral votes.

We also project Obama to win the popular vote by 6.1 points; his lead is slightly larger than that in the polls now, but our model accounts for the fact that candidates with large leads in the polls typically underperform their numbers by a small margin on Election Day.

This race appears to have stabilized as of about the time of the second debate in Nashville, Tennessee on October 8th.

Glory In The Day

If you feel like wallowing in the personal stories of Obama voters, go here.
My polling place is at the fairgrounds in Southern Maryland, about 40 minutes from Washington, D.C. This used to be tobacco country, but is slowly being developed, or other crops are grown. We waited until 10:00 to vote, to avoid the lines. When we got there a 97-year-old Black man was being wheeled out of the polls in his wheelchair. It was the first time he had ever voted in his life. When he came outside he asked if anyone could give him an Obama button. There were none left at the Democrat's booth so I gave him mine. He was so proud and I started crying. He looked at me and said, "why are you crying? this is a day for glory." I am still crying.
Side note: Good thing the weather is pretty good across the country. With nearly all mail-in here for the last few years, and before that with permanent absentee, it's astounding that people have to stand in line for hours in bad weather just to vote.


From the voter open thread at TPM:
I'm 60 miles west of Philly - Reading - Mt. Penn Borough.
We were 17th in line at 6:30. Voted at 7:05. By the time we left, a line of nearly 100 stretched down 25th Street.
Lots of youngsters.
Special Note: Upon exit, a well-tailored Obama "Observer" from NY state asked us if the machines were operating properly.
What a friggin ground game!!!
I only hope that Obama's crew has observers in states like VA, OH, FL.

Post O' Teh Day

Boyd Reed at TPM:
I have a confession to make.
I did not vote for Barack Obama today.
Worth a read. You might cry.


Election Day 2008

Washington, D.C.

Do The Right Thing

"You can always trust the Americans to do the right thing. After they've tried everything else."

Winston Churchill


By 6 p.m. PST

We will know the result.
Here's why:

If Obama wins North Carolina, expect him to romp to a huge victory as that would suggest that a number of closely contested red states go Democratic.

An Obama victory in Florida or Virginia would also be fatal to McCain. Victory in both augurs a landslide. If he loses both, it would suggest that the electoral map is reverting to form and we might be in for a long night.

John McCain can’t win unless he takes Pennsylvania, which should be a key early indicator. Because if Obama loses Pennsylvania, it’s hard to see him winning in places like North Carolina or Virginia anyway.

Everyone’s nerves are frayed at this point, but it’s hard to see how McCain wins; signs of the outcome should be abundantly clear by 9 P.M. EDT.

Close Race in Washington State?

That's what a KPLU reporter told me about the governor's race this morning, and that's what I would have believed based on old polls had I not seen the TPM rundown of the last polls. One had Gregoire up by six, another by nine.
The only reason we may not know the outcome right away is that King County's slo-o-ow machines won't have all the votes counted tonight and that county represents a third of the state vote.
By the way, the Sec. of State is predicting only an 83 percent turnout. I don't believe that. I think it will be much higher and may check out the registration numbers later today if I'm really bored.

Voter Suppression

Look, folks, I know there's lots of bad GOP behavior breaking out all over the country. It was to be expected, and it's fully documented by all the blogs I read, none of which believes it will be effective.
Remember, the Obama campaign figured on all this. They've got 4,000 lawyers in Florida alone and an excellent trouble reporting and response system in conjunction with a lot of other organizations.

What to Watch For Tuesday Night

From Politico
PUNDIT PREP — NBC News Political Director Chuck Todd on “Today” and why Virginia at 7 p.m. Eastern may tell the night’s story: “They count their vote pretty quickly — they’re a very efficient state, as far as that’s concerned. We probably will know by 8 o’clock ... 8:15 . And if we’ve called this race by 8 o’clock and it’s conforming to the public polls that we see now, and Obama’s got that by 8 o’clock, boy, suddenly the path’s going to get narrow and all of us are gonna start having to come up with different words to describe how the election’s going.

***“If we HAVEN’T called Virginia and it’s getting closer to 9 o’clock, 10 o’clock, that could be a pretty good night for McCain.”

If O gets the Old Dominion, “We’re going to be watching just three states at that point — Florida, Ohio, North Carolina. Because if Obama’s got Virginia, all he needs is one more of that triangle. ... If he gets one of those three, then there’s no patch to 270 for John McCain.”

Monday, November 3, 2008

My Fellow Americans

I called 40 people near the town of Grand Rapids, Ohio, tonight to ask them if they'd voted, who they supported and let them know where their polling place was.
It was fun. One 87 year old lady was for Obama, some wouldn't say, so I know who they were for, one guy said he wasn't even sure he would vote, lots of young ones for Obama and one 74 year old asked me how much I was being paid. When I told her I was a volunteer, she told me to get a job. I told her I was retired and didn't need a job, and she said she just didn't know why anyone would do what I was doing. Love 'em all. My fellow Americans.

An Election Day Scorecard

I have no idea how accurate it is.

From Radical Center at 538, 10/9/08:
Even some of the media outlets have been letting go of the 'razor-thin-margin-too-close-to-call-statistical-dead-heat-anyone's-race' mantra and actually stating what those of us with polling data and a spreadsheet have been saying for weeks. It's not really that close people. It was the same way during the primaries - the storyline after Super Tuesday was always 'Obama leads by the narrowest of margins'. All a real journalist had to do is go to Wikipedia, copy their HTML chart into Excel, and play with numbers to find that the votes for Clinton just weren't there. Weren't for a long time.

PeteKent made me think of an 538-inspired project I worked on yesterday - an election night scorecard. (thanks PeteKent, now find a phonebooth and turn back into a rational non-koolaid-drinker)

These are the returns I am going to be interested in and when they come in:

Time State Electoral Votes
7:00 Indiana 11
7:00 Virginia 13
7:30 Ohio 20
8:00 Florida 27
8:00 Missouri 11
8:00 New Hampshire 4
8:30 North Carolina 15
9:00 Colorado 9
10:00 Nevada 5

By my way of thinking, McCain can only afford to lose NH or NV, but not both. My guess is by the poll closing times, the networks will not be able to call IN, VA, OH, FL, MO. Maybe they will call NH - we will see. If they call any of the first five for Obama, pop the corks, but I think the networks will be too cautious to do so until substatial numbers of returns come in.

Tomorrow Night: Watch For This

From Geo. St. via Rick Davis, McCain's campaign manager:
Here are the six states to watch between 7pm and 8pm tomorrow night:

Virginia and Indiana after the last polls close at 7pm, Ohio and North Carolina after 7:30pm, and then Pennsylvania and Florida after 8pm.
These are the canaries in the coal mine.
McCain campaign manager Rick Davis conceded on "This Week" that John McCain has to win five out of six of these states to have a viable path to the presidency.
He could get there by holding all of the Bush states -- Indiana, Virginia, Ohio, Florida, and North Carolina -- and losing Pennsylvania, and then sacrificing Iowa and New Mexico.
But he will then need to secure Nevada and Colorado and all the rest of the Bush states later in the evening.

Nate Says

Nate Silver of knows more than anybody about the numbers in this election. So tomorrow night, remember this:
Also, there are some states that truly do appear to be "must-wins" for McCain. In each and every one of the 624 victory scenarios that the simulation found for him this afternoon, McCain won Florida, Georgia, Missouri, Indiana and Montana. He also picked up Ohio in 621 out of the 624 simulations, and North Carolina in 622 out of 624. If McCain drops any of those states, it's pretty much over.

Sunday, November 2, 2008


Grizzled old bowlegged cowboy. I talked him into making a video for HBO's The Blacklist. but its initial show was really, really good with people like Toni Morrison and Chris Rock but they're soliciting submissions from ordinary folks and CT's on there. I've known him for 45 years.

Two Days Left

From One Dick To Another