Local Matters

Community Sponsors

john mccain

October 13, 2008 - 8:53pm
posted by Guy Gabbey Jr in Barack Obama, politics, election, john mccain, nation and world.


"From each, according  to his ability; to each, according to his need"

"I think  when you spread the wealth around, it's good for everybody."

One  of these quotes I heard this morning, and immediatly thought of  the  other. The problem with them is that its straight from the  Karl Marx book of  Socialism.

So many times in this campaign  for president, Obama has said things much to  this effect and has  not been called out on it in any main stream media outlet.  Handing  the reins of this country to him would send America into a tailspin  of  which we may not be able to recover from.

Stepping  away from the Marxist  view of "spreading the wealth," lets look  at the tax plan for a minute.

In  his plan, only companies making $250,000 or more would  see a tax  rate. That seems great for you and me right? We make up the 95%  who  wont see a tax increase. WRONG!

Big  buisness is something that we all use everyday. Whether it be at  the gas station, or at Wal-Mart, Wendy's. When Obama's new tax  plan goes into  affect, these companies will immediatly raise their  prices. CORPORATIONS DO NOT  PAY TAXES! WE, WE PAY THEIR TAXES!  Coporations will not take a hit on their  profits. They need to  pay everyone down the line as well. So much for not seeing  an  increase.

Small business wont escape  the taxes either. First of all,  Obama's number of $250,000 is  too vague. Does that mean gross or net business  income. Does that  include the inventory that any store needs to carry?

That  not withstanding. Small companies have to buy from big companies.  Therefore, they'll be paying more. I like going to my local gun  store. Its  small, and costs a little more than the big box store,  but the tips and advice I  get make up the difference. When these  companies have to pay more for their  product, how are they going  to make up for it?

They can raise their prices. However,  that will make more people go to the  bigger stores, and forgo  the advice aspect for the deal. They could lay off  employees.  However, that will add to the unemployment numbers, and drive up  number of people having to rely more on the government.

How  about that. Even when Obama is trying not to show is socialism,  it comes  out in the end. The more people that have to rely on  the government, the more  power the government has over the people.

We've already given $700 billion to Wall St. Lets not let  socialism take over  anymore.

I'm Guy, a lifelong conservitive,  and I'll be voting against Socialism


October 4, 2008 - 7:27pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Barack Obama, john mccain, nation and world, Sarah Palin.

How desperate is the McCain campaign getting? They're getting silly with attacks on Obama because of tenuous ties to a former 1960s radical once accused of being involved in anti-Vietnam bomb attacks.

Palin made the chargers today.

(CNN) -- Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin on Saturday slammed Sen. Barack Obama's political relationship with a former anti-war radical, accusing him of associating "with terrorists who targeted their own country."

Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin lashed out at Sen. Barack Obama's  ties to controversial figure William Ayers.

Palin's attack delivered on the McCain campaign's announcement that it would step up attacks on the Democratic presidential candidate with just a month left before the November general election.

"This is not a man who sees America as you and I do: as the greatest force for good in the world," Palin said at a fundraising event in Colorado, according to a statement released by the McCain-Palin campaign. "This is someone who sees American as imperfect enough to pal around with terrorists who targeted their own country."

The Washington Post fact checked these chargers when Hillary Clinton raised them during the primary (so not only is McCain/Palin sliming, they're sliming with old news).

The only hard facts that have come out so far are the $200 contribution by Ayers to the Obama re-election fund, and their joint membership of the eight-person Woods Fund Board. Ayers did not respond to e-mails and telephone calls requesting clarification of the relationship. Obama spokesman Bill Burton noted in a statement that Ayers was a professor of education at the University of Illinois and a former aide to Mayor Richard M. Daley, and continued:

Senator Obama strongly condemns the violent actions of the Weathermen group, as he does all acts of violence. But he was an eight-year-old child when Ayers and the Weathermen were active, and any attempt to connect Obama with events of almost forty years ago is ridiculous.


But the Obama-Ayers link is a tenuous one. As Newsday pointed out,

Obama's ties to Ayers are no more meaningful than McCain's ties to Ho Chi Minh. They are the kind of ties that two people who share some overlap in political belief and live in the same neighborhood, caring about the same local issues, are likely to form. The only thing you can fault Obama for is planting the early stages of is political career in Chicago.

The politics of attack and destruction are bad for America. Clearly, Palin was hired to be the attack dog. That decision does not reflect well on McCain.

September 28, 2008 - 8:41am
posted by Howard B. Owens in john mccain, nation and world, Sarah Palin.

Sarah PalinAnybody of any ambition has probably found themselves in an awkward moment, dealing with something he or she isn't simply prepared to handle.

Conservative writer Rod Dreher reminds us what that is like, and why we might have sympathy for Sarah Palin, we're talking about somebody who would be Vice President of the United States.

I remember the morning I woke up in my college dorm room and went in to take my final exam in my Formal Logic class. I knew I was unready. Massively unready. And now I was going to be put to the ultimate test. I sat down in Dr. Sarkar's class and resolved to wing it. Of course I failed the exam and failed the class, because I had no idea what I was talking about. I wasn't a bad kid, or even a stupid kid. I was just badly unprepared, and in way over my head. Seeing the Palin interview on CBS, I thought of myself in Dr. Sarkar's exam. But see, I was a college undergraduate who had the chance to take the class again, which I did, and passed (barely). I wasn't running for vice president of the United States.

I came to this quote through Ta-Nehisi Coates, who writes:

In election season, there is a price for being turned into a symbol. When actual journalists, with a rep to protect, show up, they are going to do their job. Which brings me to the sexism of John McCain. He knew full well what Sarah Palin was going to face if he nominated her. He knew that reporters would go through her past, that they'd quizz her on the present, that she would need to be ready, and he shunted concern aside, and tossed her to the wolves. Think on that for a mement. For one last run at the White House, he risked a future star of the party he claims to call home. How do you do that? I don't meant to rob Palin of agency, certainly she is also a victim of her own calculations and ambitions. But where I am from the elders protect you, and pull you back when you've gone too far, when your head has gotten too big.

McCain has a temper. It's one of the most distinguishing marks of his career. The American people haven't really seen it yet, not on a big stage. McCain is most vulnerable when attacked for what he has some glimmer of recognition is his own personal failings. If Obama really wanted to show America the real McCain, in the next debate, he would repeatedly question McCain's judgment in selected Sarah Palin as the veep nominee.  McCain would come unhinged. He blew it. Surely, he's losing sleep over it.

UPDATE: And this from Fareed Zakaria:

Can we now admit the obvious? Sarah Palin is utterly unqualified to be vice president. She is a feisty, charismatic politician who has done some good things in Alaska. But she has never spent a day thinking about any important national or international issue, and this is a hell of a time to start. The next administration is going to face a set of challenges unlike any in recent memory. There is an ongoing military operation in Iraq that still costs $10 billion a month, a war against the Taliban in Afghanistan and Pakistan that is not going well and is not easily fixed. Iran, Russia and Venezuela present tough strategic challenges.

September 28, 2008 - 8:14am
posted by Howard B. Owens in john mccain, nation and world.

A couple of worthwhile posts on John McCain.

First, E.J. Dionne on McCain's dishonest campaign messages.

McCain once campaigned on the idea that the war on terrorism is the “transcendent” issue of our time. Now, he’s stooping to cheap advertising that would be condemned as trivial and misleading in a state legislative race. Boy, do I miss the old John McCain and wonder what became of him. And I wonder if the media will really take on this onslaught of half-truths and outright deception.

So much for the "straight talk express."

And James Fallows points out that while McCain feels free to lecture Obama on tactics vs. strategy, he has very little grasp of the concepts himself.  And he's shown himself, time and again, and quite recently, at being a shot-from-the-hip tactician rather than a strategic leader.

Some examples are so familiar as to need no explanation: McCain choosing the ten-day tactical "bounce" from the surprise choice of Sarah Palin, in exchange for the enormous strategic risk in choosing an un-vetted and now obviously unqualified running mate. Or McCain rolling the dice with his threat to boycott the debate -- and then, once on stage, appearing to be only mildly interested in the financial-bailout deal that 72 hours earlier was the stated reason for overturning all agreements about the debates .

McCain is increasingly hard to stomach.

September 26, 2008 - 9:14am
posted by Howard B. Owens in john mccain, nation and world.

September 24, 2008 - 7:35am
posted by Howard B. Owens in john mccain, nation and world, Sarah Palin.

Sarah Palin is on the fast track in foreign policy education. Tuesday, she meet with heads of state at the U.N. and was briefed by non-other than Henry Kissenger.

Yet, she continues to duck reporters.

The candidate's staff carefully choreographed her debut onto the international stage, starting each meeting with a brief photo opportunity and allowing no questions. Unscripted moments were kept to a minimum.

At first, the campaign wanted to keep reporters out altogether. But after the five major television networks threatened to boycott coverage of the Palin meetings, a pool that included a print journalist eventually was allowed in.

Palin's press shyness is odd, because John McCain's entire career has been built on candor and openness with the press.  He is popular with reporters because he's never been afraid to hang out at the back of the plane, or the back of the bus and tell war stories and answer questions.  He's been known as one of the most accessible senators.

Yet, Palin hides. Why?  Or, what is it that John McCain has to hide?

There's only one reason you don't answer questions: You're afraid.

Los Angeles Times blogger Elizabeth Snead calls it "the cone of silence" around Palin.

McCain's camp has put a force field around the Alaska governor in recent weeks, and some in the media speculate that this is to keep her from dealing with unscripted questions from voters and reporters.

And it was even worse during these diplomacy sessions. Reporters were actually banned from the start of the meetings to stop them from asking questions of Palin.

Before Palin's first meeting with Karzai, campaign aides told the pool reporters that followed her they could not go into meetings but that photographers and a video camera crew would be let in for pictures.

President Bush and members of Congress routinely allow reporters to attend photo ops, and the reporters often ask questions at the beginning of private meetings before they're ushered out.

Not this time. Two or more news organizations, including the Associated Press, objected to their reporters' exclusion and were told that the decision was not subject to discussion. When aides backed down, campaign spokeswoman Tracey Schmitt said the reporter ban was a "miscommunication."

Finally, one reporter was let in.

Is this any way to run a campaign in a democracy?

September 23, 2008 - 12:01pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in john mccain, nation and world.

Author and Vietnam War expert Sydney H. Schanberg has been following John McCain's fight against full disclosure on missing POWs from Vietnam for decades.  He supplies a full write up on the history for AlterNet.

The sum of the secrets McCain has sought to hide is not small. There exists a telling mass of official documents, radio intercepts, witness depositions, satellite photos of rescue symbols that pilots were trained to use, electronic messages from the ground containing the individual code numbers given to airmen, a rescue mission by a Special Forces unit that was aborted twice by Washington and even sworn testimony by two defense secretaries that "men were left behind." This imposing body of evidence suggests that a large number -- probably hundreds -- of the US prisoners held in Vietnam were not returned when the peace treaty was signed in January 1973 and Hanoi released 591 men, among them Navy combat pilot John S. McCain.


Throughout the Paris negotiations, the North Vietnamese tied the prisoner issue tightly to the issue of reparations. Finally, in a February 1, 1973, formal letter to Hanoi's premier, Pham Van Dong, Nixon pledged $3.25 billion in "postwar reconstruction" aid. The North Vietnamese, though, remained skeptical about the reparations promise being honored (it never was). Hanoi thus held back prisoners -- just as it had done when the French were defeated at Dien Bien Phu in 1954 and withdrew their forces from Vietnam. France later paid ransoms for prisoners and brought them home.


On November 11, 1992, Dolores Alfond, sister of missing airman Capt. Victor Apodaca and chair of the National Alliance of Families, an organization of relatives of POW/MIAs, testified at one of the Senate committee's public hearings. She asked for information about data the government had gathered from electronic devices used in a classified program known as PAVE SPIKE.

The devices were primarily motion sensors, dropped by air, designed to pick up enemy troop movements. But they also had rescue capabilities. Someone on the ground -- a downed airman or a prisoner on a labor gang -- could manually enter data into the sensor, which were regularly collected electronically by US planes flying overhead. Alfond stated, without any challenge from the committee, that in 1974, a year after the supposedly complete return of prisoners, the gathered data showed that a person or people had manually entered into the sensors -- as US pilots had been trained to do -- "no less than 20 authenticator numbers that corresponded exactly to the classified authenticator numbers of 20 US POW/MIAs who were lost in Laos." Alfond added, says the transcript: "This PAVE SPIKE intelligence is seamless, but the committee has not discussed it or released what it knows about PAVE SPIKE."

McCain, whose POW status made him the committee's most powerful member, attended that hearing specifically to confront Alfond because of her criticism of the panel's work. He bellowed and berated her for quite a while. His face turning anger-pink, he accused her of "denigrating" his "patriotism." The bullying had its effect -- she began to cry.

After a pause Alfond recovered and tried to respond to his scorching tirade, but McCain simply turned and stormed out of the room. The PAVE SPIKE file has never been declassified. We still don't know anything about those 20 POWs.


It's not clear whether the taped confession McCain gave to his captors to avoid further torture has played a role in his postwar behavior. That confession was played endlessly over the prison loudspeaker system at Hoa Lo -- to try to break down other prisoners -- and was broadcast over Hanoi's state radio. Reportedly, he confessed to being a war criminal who had bombed a school and other civilian targets. The Pentagon has copies of the confessions but will not release them. Also, no outsider I know of has ever seen a nonredacted copy of McCain's debriefing when he returned from captivity, which is classified but can be made public by McCain.

Before the election, before John McCain can become president, if he's fortunate enough to win, shouldn't all of his service records be released?

July 28, 2008 - 9:01pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in politics, election, john mccain.

My friend Matt Welch (who wrote a book about John McCain) takes a look McCain's speech trumpeting his support of the surge and suggesting Obama's lack of support disqualifies him for the highest office in the land.

What interests me here is McCain's classic trait of personalizing all policy debates. If you disagree with him, it must be because you are dishonorable, and placing politics ahead of country.

and ...

Second and more interestingly, at the time of the surge, there was zero political cost to McCain supporting the surge. He was running in a Republican primary, and not particularly well, so his ironclad support for troop escalation was largely seen by many Republican stalwarts (in a season where the only anti-war candidate was being treated like a leper) as one of the best things going for the guy, given his various transgressions on other counts.



Subscribe to



Copyright © 2008-2020 The Batavian. All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy | Terms of Service

blue button