Tuesday, November 25, 2008

On Hiatus Until December 3

We have visitors coming to beautiful Kauai tomorrow, and they'll be staying for a week. I'm worn out on politics for a while anyway.

Happy Thanksgiving, everybody! 

Saturday, November 22, 2008

What Leadership Looks Like

I am SO looking forward to this man being our president!

Friday, November 21, 2008

The Sick, Pathetic Radical Right

Now that they've been decisively kicked out of power, their hysteria and maliciousness are growing exponentially. An excerpt from this post at Democratic Strategist:

One of the hallmarks of "movement conservative" opinion in recent years has been the growing tendency to treat itself not simply as a legitimate or "correct" point of view, or one that promotes policies good for the country, but as a cause that is synonymous with American self-interest, the Judeo-Christian tradition, and indeed, Western Civilization. This trend has naturally led to the depiction of its opponents as un-American, immoral and anti-religious, and, well, barbaric. Within the Christian Right, the need to demonize has become even more intense, in justification of the extraordinary step taken by religious leaders to adopt a "prophetic stance" against the wickedness of society and harness their pulpits and their flocks to the secular goals of the Republican Party.

From this point of view, "liberals" can't simply be wrong or ill-informed or open to persuasion. Those supporting a woman's right to choose must actually favor infanticide, euthanasia and human cloning. Advocates of a less militaristic foreign policy must be consciously aligned with America's enemies. "People for the American Way" favoring mild church-state separation rules must really aim at systemic descrimination against Christians. Proponents of marriage equality for gays and lesbians are actually bent on destroying the traditional family.

It is this frothing, ugly, disgusting sea of paranoia and lunatic-style hatred that right-wing hustlers like Sean Hannity (with his phony veterans charity), Ann Coulter (with her lying,vicious scribbling packaged as books), and Rush Limbaugh, with his  Pravda-like radio program, exploit, feed, and get rich off of. I can tell you, however, that this right-wing filth has deep origins. Ever since Herbert Hoover practically called FDR a Bolshevik in 1932, the Right has been pulling this crap. Joseph McCarthy and Richard Nixon were spewing the same venom in the 1950s. The Goldwater campaign in 1964 brought these idiots out in force. (I particularly remember a lying piece of Right-wing vomit called None Dare Call It Treason from that year.) Beginning with Nixon's presidency in 1969, the Republicans embarked on a 40 year campaign to paint the Democrats as weak, hostile to religion, traitorous, cowardly, and unpatriotic.  In truth, the Right has ALWAYS hated progressives, has ALWAYS called them traitors, has ALWAYS called them anti-American. What we are seeing now is simply the culmination of decades of vile Right-wing lies and hatred. The truth of the matter is startlingly simple: 

It is American conservatism that is the cancer on this country. It is the conservatives who have been killing America. It is the conservatives who are the threat to America's future--not us. 

Yes, the current insanity is particularly virulent, but it should not have been unexpected. You see, the Right wing has been engaged in a non-stop Hate Campaign for a long time. We shouldn't be surprised at the crude, ludicrous depths to which it has descended.

By the way, it you want a tragic but typical example of the searing damage this environment of Right-wing lies and fear has produced, check Eric Alterman's page here. It will make you sad--and it will open your eyes.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Is the Republican Party Dying?

Man, I hope so. Any party that is as deeply in the grasp of bigots, pinheads, and out and out enemies of ordinary working people as the Republican leadership is deserves to go the way of the Whigs and Federalists.

Not to mention the Know Nothings. But I repeat myself.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

The Scum Also Rises

Hate-filled racist cretins are coming out of the woodwork like crazy since Barack Obama won his decisive victory two weeks ago. The Christian Science Monitor has the story here. Excerpt:

The election of America's first black president has triggered more than 200 hate-related incidents, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center – a record in modern presidential elections. Moreover, the white nationalist movement, bemoaning an election that confirmed voters' comfort with a multiracial demography, expects Mr. Obama's election to be a potent recruiting tool – one that watchdog groups warn could give new impetus to a mostly defanged fringe element.

Most election-related threats have so far been little more than juvenile pranks. But the political marginalization of certain Southern whites, economic distress in rural areas, and a White House occupant who symbolizes a multiethnic United States could combine to produce a backlash against what some have heralded as the dawn of a postracial America. In some parts of the South, there's even talk of secession...

...postelection, at least two white nationalist websites – Stormfront and the Council of Conservative Citizens – report their servers have crashed because of heavy traffic. The League of the South, a secessionist group, says Web hits jumped from 50,000 a month to 300,000 since Nov. 4, and its phones are ringing off the hook

My God, when, when, WHEN are these people ever going to change? When? 

No Punishment WHATSOEVER for Lieberman

Senate Democrats voted heavily to allow Joe Lieberman to maintain his Homeland Security chairmanship, despite Lieberman's vile, ugly rhetoric in support of John McCain.

Hey loyal Obama supporters! Hey liberals and progressives, the people who make up the most loyal core of the Democratic Party! The Senate Democrats have a message for you: Go to hell.
Kissing Joe Lieberman's ass trumps everything else.

Monday, November 17, 2008

The ACTUAL Cost of the Bailouts: $4.3 Trillion

Not the $700 billion figure bandied about by everybody, it seems. CNBC has the goods here:

That's $4,284,500,000,000 and more than what was spent on WW II, if adjusted for inflation, based on our computations from a variety of estimates and sources.

I think it was the World War II comparison that caught my eye.

Ho-lee Crap.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Joe Lieberman: Lying, Two-Faced, SOB

Just in case my position isn't clear.

And there are Democrats who want this bastard to KEEP his committee chairmanship? My God, talk about Battered Spouse Syndrome.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Lieberman ACTUALLY Thinks He Has a Right to Be a Chairman?

Party traitor Joe Lieberman says that he must be given back his chairmanship of the Homeland Security committee in the Senate or he will leave the Democratic caucus. This from a guy who threw every piece of garbage at Barack Obama he could think of. He campaigned for McCain, for G-d's sake! This SOB is actually negotiating, even DEMANDING.

Screw him. Strip him of his chairmanship. If he walks, good riddance.

And Rachel Maddow puts in her two cents:

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

No, the Far Right Isn't Going to Settle Down

In fact, they're going to get more demented than ever. Bob Cesca is on the case:

Intellectual violence. While not a new term, it perfectly defines what we're seeing now: accusations and smears that so severely confound logic they literally attack -- violate -- reality and the human intellect. It's like a berkzerker dervish of argumentative elbows and fists indiscriminately flailing around, thwacking anything in its orbit, so much so that constructing a counterpoint is literally painful, "Why the hell am I trying to debunk this?! Ow! My head. Aw hell, I need a drink."

There is also a Facebook group demanding Obama's impeachment. Already. Two months before he becomes president.

Here's to the "Loyal" Opposition. They intend to be even more aggressively stupid, dishonest, vicious, and morally repellent than they were in the 1990s. And that is no small feat.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

On Veterans Day 2008

I would like to lend my small voice to the chorus of those expressing gratitude to our veterans on this day.  There is nothing our country should not do for them, because they were willing to do everything for us. 

By the way, we are down to our last World War I veteran, and the World War II veterans are passing away at the rate of 1,000 a day. Once they are gone, our last living ties to these conflicts will be gone forever, and that's a sobering thing to consider.

God bless the veterans, and may the day finally come when the scourge of war passes away from us forever.

Monday, November 10, 2008

A Tale of Two Presidencies

Check out the contrast between the incoming Obama and the outgoing Bush here. Bush is more unpopular than Nixon was on the day the latter resigned from office.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Reflections on the 2008 Election

The 2008 election was certainly the most momentous of my lifetime, and I include in that estimate the crucial 1968 election that began the era of Republican domination of the presidency. I've been thinking a lot about what happened, and I'd like to share some of those thoughts with you here.

1. Nationally, the Democratic Party is in the Ascendancy

Obama will end up with almost 53% of the vote, according to my calculation, once all of the early and absentee votes on the west coast are accounted for. McCain will end up with about 46%. Obama received a higher share of the vote than any Democrat has since Lyndon Johnson's epic 61% share in 1964. While Obama's popular vote margin falls somewhat short of true landslide status (a margin of 10 is generally considered the threshold), his victory was still decisive. Moreover, for the Democrats there are very heartening trends, and for the Republicans there are very ominous ones.

According to CNN's exit polls, the following picture has emerged:

Voters aged 18-24 went for Obama 68-30
Voters aged 24-29 went for Obama 69-29.
First time voters went for Obama 72-27 (!)

Studies show that people often retain voting habits acquired in their late teens and early to mid 20s. While many people switch their allegiances later, still it must be said that the Democrats look to be in good shape among the cohort of voters who are in their young adulthood now, and this bodes well for the future of the Democratic Party. McCain prevailed in only one age group: voters 65 and older, 54-44.

Moreover, consider the ethnic composition of the United States in 2050. You can get a good sense of it, perhaps, by looking at California now. And the Republicans have to see long-term disaster looming if that is indeed the case. All of the growing categories are going Democratic.

Again, according to CNN:

African American voters went for Obama 96-3.
Latinos went for Obama 67-30.
Asian voters went to Obama 63-34

In religious affiliation, according to MSNBC, Obama won among Catholics (54-45), Jews (78-21), those of other faiths (73-22), and those of no particular faith (75-23). McCain prevailed by 54-45 among Protestants/Other Christians (although I'm unsure how MSNBC is defining this category.) In gender, Obama prevailed heavily among women. In education, Obama won heavily among those who have done post-grad work and narrowly among all those with a college degree. Obama also won city dwellers AND suburbanites. In short, the Democrats are in a strong position to consolidate the gains they made nationally.

Obama flipped the following states won by Bush in 2004: Ohio, Indiana, Iowa, Virginia, North Carolina, Florida, New Mexico, Nevada, and Colorado. (He may yet win Missouri or even Georgia, but the chances are admittedly slim.) His victories in Indiana and Virginia are the first for a Democrat since 1964. Obama ran unusually strongly for a Democrat in the Dakotas and Montana, and he won a respectable 44% in Texas and 45% in South Carolina. Obama crushed McCain in Illinois and California by higher percentages than LBJ won over Goldwater in '64.

In fact, if you look at the numbers carefully, there are 21 states in the U.S. with 10 or more electoral votes, what we might call "big states". Obama carried 16 of them. In fact, thanks to Howard Dean's 50 state strategy, states such as Missouri, Georgia, Mississippi, Arizona, and even Alaska will be competitive next time.

And check this out: The Democratic Party's candidate has now won the popular vote in 4 out of the last 5 national elections.

Finally, the Democratic Party is now led by a man who raised more money from more contributors than anyone in history, and who assembled the greatest get-out-the-vote operation ever seen. In 2010 and 2012 the Democrats will have these vast resources at their service again.

Oh, and in case I forget: In the last two years, the Republicans have now lost about 57 seats in the House; their losses in the Senate, pending recounts, are potentially 15 seats.

2. The Republican Party is Becoming a Regional Party

For all intents and purposes, the Republican Party has ceased to exist in the northeast. Obama swept the region with 61% of the vote. In fact, over the last five elections, the Republicans have carried a state in the region ONCE--New Hampshire in 2000. Democrats have carried states in the region FIFTY-FOUR TIMES. (And I'm not even counting DC, which is an automatic win for the Democrats.) Obama ran 1,800,000 votes ahead of McCain in the region's biggest state, New York. Congressionally, the 2008 election was a virtual wipeout for the Republicans in the northeast. Out of 22 U.S. Representatives in New England, none is a Republican. Out of 29 House seats in New York, only 3 are Republican. In fact, out of 92 House members in the area, the Democrats now hold a 75-17 advantage. (!) In the Senate, come January, only 4 of the region's 22 Senators will be Republicans. And 8 out of 11 governors in the northeast are Democrats. In short, the GOP has been virtually eliminated in one of the major regions of the country.

In fact, the Republicans are now really only the party of the Deep South. Seven of the party's 21 governors are southern. The GOP's Senate and House membership is increasingly southern (almost half their Senators come from the South.) McCain carried 22 states; 11 of them are southern. McCain will probably end up with 173 electoral votes; 118 were from the South. Obama won the electoral votes of the non-southern states 309 to 55! And this map is almost startling. It shows the counties where the Republicans increased their share of the vote from 2004 to 2008:

In short, the Republican Party is increasingly the Southern Party. The Republicans are no longer competitive in the northeast, as we have seen, but they also face bleak prospects for the foreseeable future in Michigan, Wisconsin, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, New Mexico, Colorado, and the entire West Coast.

The Republicans are increasingly the party of older, less educated, less affluent, somewhat reactionary white Protestants. Considering the direction this country is going in demographically, I wouldn't want to be in their shoes.

3. Fox "News" and Right Wing Hate Radio Have Poisoned the Minds of Millions of People Against Obama

Every hideous lie imaginable was thrown at Obama during the campaign--baby killer, Marxist, Communist, Socialist, anti-Semite, anti-white, you name it. There are actually people today who are terrified of Obama because they think he is going to terrorize and imprison whites! (One of them was telling this to G. Gordon Liddy on the radio yesterday. And he seemed to agree!) Many are convinced Obama is going to confiscate their wealth and establish an anti-Christian state in America, complete with Islamic Law! And where did such insane sickness come from? From the frothing lies of Fox "News" and right wing psychopaths such as Coulter, Hannity, Beck, Liddy, Savage, Michael Reagan, Limbaugh, and all of the other far-right sewer rats. This will be one of Obama's most crucial challenges: how to reassure and conciliate those who are literally frightened to death by him and what they imagine he will do. These people will form the passionate, crazed core of the opposition to him, and they will attack him relentlessly. Some may even attempt to do violence to him. This is the outcome of 40 years of right-wing hatred and slander directed at the Democrats--a segment of the population that is thoroughly mentally unhinged at the thought of a black progressive president. Dealing with these wounded people will not be easy.

4. The selection of Sarah Palin as a candidate for Vice President was one of the most irresponsible acts in American political history.

Only now, after the election, are we hearing the truth about the full extent of Palin's shocking ignorance, dishonesty, and instability. People inside the McCain campaign have come forward to tell us that Palin didn't know Africa was a continent instead of a country, that she lacked a basic understanding of how the U.S. government even works, that she in fact knew virtually nothing about any major issue at all. Naturally, the question arises:

Why in the hell did McCain choose her to be potentially one heartbeat away from the presidency??

Palin's selection was an absolute outrage. Many talented and capable Republicans were passed over in favor of her. How dare the McCain campaign put this nation in that kind of danger!

5. Barack Obama will not be able to fix everything right away--or even in eight years.

Obama's supporters are almost euphoric about his election, and with good reason. The choice of this spectacularly intelligent, thoughtful, competent, and talented man to be our new leader is electrifying. He will be a 180 degree contrast to the miserable failure that preceded him. But we have to be realistic and sober in our expectations. The economic, foreign, and social problems the United States faces are so severe that Obama will be tested more than any other president since FDR. He will make mistakes; he will sometimes anger us; he will sometimes fall short. But given his ability, his team, and a cooperative Congress, I am feeling a hope that I have not had for eight long, dark years. In fact, I feel as if my whole body and soul have unclenched and relaxed. On 20 January 2009, I am once again going to be proud of my president.

6. The struggle is not over.

The whole apparatus of right wing hate propaganda is still in place. The hard right conservatives will try to undermine Obama at every turn, and the liars of the radical right will try to destroy him the way they nearly destroyed Bill Clinton. But they will find out that this isn't the 1990s. A mighty Liberal/Progressive/Democratic Netroots organization has arisen to fight back against the tide of sewage being generated by the Right Wing Noise Machine. The radical right wingers think they're going to push us around again. They're wrong. We in the Progressive Netroots are STRONG. We are UNITED. We are FIERCELY DETERMINED. And whenever our political enemies go after President Obama, we'll be able to say this, loudly and proudly:


Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Wow! Over 125,000 Gather to See President-Elect Obama

From icebergslim on DKos. (Click for bigger image).


Not just for a party, not just for an individual, but for ALL of the American people. This is a great night for hope, for change, and for our future as a nation. Congratulations, President-Elect Barack Obama!!

Why You Should Vote for Obama and Biden Today



Monday, November 03, 2008

Palin Was the Final Insult

The history of social conservatism in America is, in large part, a shameful and disgraceful one. It was social conservatives who demanded the protection of slavery in the new Constitution. It was social conservatives who helped tear America apart prior to the Civil War by their fanatical opposition to anything that would restrict slavery’s expansion. Social conservatives were the core of the viciously anti-immigrant Know Nothings in the 1850s. It was social conservatives who flocked to the Confederate cause during the war, and it was social conservatives who maintained the monstrous Jim Crow system of neo-slavery in the Deep South (and elsewhere). Social conservatives formed the post-Civil War southern church movement, based on the sentiment that the wrong side had won the Civil War. Social conservatives have, at various times, opposed votes for women, votes for African-Americans, the abolition of child labor, the end of segregation, tolerance of Jews, equality for gays, equal pay for women, biracial marriage, unions, minimum wage laws, workplace safety standards, health care for the poor, reproductive rights (including the right to birth control), the teaching of science in science classes, and environmental protection. Social conservatives were the core of the Klan revival in the 1920s. They were the howling supporters of the lynch mobs from the 1890s to the 1960s. They were Joe McCarthy’s worshippers. They were the George Wallace fans and the core of the White Backlash. They loved Jesse Helms.

 In short, on almost every issue, they have taken the most morally bankrupt stance. They are the enemies of rational thought, the enemies of science, and believers in a religiosity that borders on irrational fanaticism. Many are hoping for the literal end of the world and the physical destruction of the vast majority of the human race. The modern Republican Party has cynically used these people, but it has not let them actually govern.

 Until now. The nomination of Sarah Palin, pushed by the most brutally radical sections of the Republican Party, represents the triumph of the Kristol-Coulter-Limbaugh-Hannity branch of the Party, what I like to call the Timothy McVeigh wing of the Republicans. Palin is the final product of the long and vile history of American social conservatism. She represents the final insult to the rest of the American people, and as such, it is her malign influence that has the Republicans on the brink of a well-deserved defeat. Everything about the way Palin has been marketed is a slap in the face to every rational man or woman in America.

 We were told that being the mayor of a tiny Alaska town (one in which the city manager did the actual work) represented “executive experience”.

 We were told that proximity to Russia= foreign affairs experience.

 We were told that Palin is the “foremost energy expert in America”, a grotesque, laughable falsehood.

Palin believes in demons and witchcraft. Her church believes Alaska will be the End Times sanctuary. Her church believes all Jews will either be converted or exterminated soon. She thinks the Bible is literally true. She believes in “spiritual warfare”. Her views are so extreme that even most Christians are appalled by them. Yet we were not allowed to question her.

 Palin and her husband have played footsie with a group of traitorous Alaskan secessionists, a group founded by a man so hatefully anti-American as to beggar belief.

 Palin considers the John Birch Society to be too liberal and considers progressive income taxation to be “socialism”.

She has an understanding of American government comparable to that of a fourth grader.

She knows nothing about any national or international issue. She is a half-educated ignoramus who thinks dinosaurs and humans lived together and that the earth is 7,000 years old. She is willing to block abortions even for the physically and emotionally shattered victims of rapists, and for 13 year old girls molested and impregnated by their own fathers.

She cannot give a coherent answer to any serious question and, alone in modern political history, she has never been allowed to give a press conference. Her medical records were also embargoed for no apparent reason.

Her administration in Alaska has been fraught with corruption and petty favoritism for her friends and supporters.

Oh, and she lies. Incessantly. Insistently. Repeatedly. About everything.  She throws every smear and slander against her opponents gleefully, revealing an ugliness of spirit that is repulsive. And her hypocrisy knows no bounds whatsoever, as she crows about being against earmarks while governing a state that gets more federal dollars per capita than any other.

In short, she is the sum total and epitome of everything modern American social conservatism stands for—Christianism instead of Christianity, proud ignorance, right wing fanaticism, bigotry of the most vicious kind, contempt for science, contempt for reason, contempt for our democratic republic, and  nauseating, self-righteous hypocrisy and moral fraud. She is wildly popular among the small minority of Americans that the social conservatives, despite their lying propaganda to the contrary, actually are. To the rest of us, she is an insult to our intelligence and our common sense. She, more than any other factor, has helped expose the Republican Party for the intellectually bankrupt shell that it has become. And after her defeat tomorrow, the Republicans will say that they lost because they weren’t conservative enough, and that they should have let Sarah be Sarah.

And the Palinization of the Republican Party will accelerate, as will the irrelevance of the party itself.

A nation’s people can only be insulted for so long. After repeated assaults on their intellects and sensibilities, they will rise up in huge numbers and thunder out, as our great nominee did in August, the following declaration of independence:


And tomorrow, their voices will be heard loudly and clearly.

Yes. We. Can

Andrew Sullivan's Ringing Endorsement of Obama

It's something to behold. Sullivan has been a relentless critic of the Bush-Cheney administration's barbaric tactics in fighting against terrorism and John McCain's acquiescence to them. Key excerpt:

But, in the end, McCain emerged by default [as the Republican nominee], a torture victim himself, and a critic of some aspects of the conduct of the war. But we saw in 2006 that, when push came to shove, even McCain acquiesced to the legalization of America's use of the very same torture techniques once used against him. And in this campaign, we have seen how no Republican candidate can escape the logic of bigotry, fanaticism and xenophobia that now grips and motivates the Republican party base. We have also learned, much more importantly, that McCain would appoint Justices to the Supreme Court who would acquiesce to and constitutionally entrench the dictatorial presidency that Bush-Cheney believe in as loyally as Roberts, Alito, Thomas and Scalia. That means we are one vote away from the court ever restraining this unchecked executive. It doesn't matter who that executive is and what party he or she belongs to. What matters is that the controls upon it - controls critical to the endurance of constitutional balance and individual freedom in America - have been frayed to the breaking point. There is no greater cause right now than repairing that.

If I were to give one reason why I believe electing Barack Obama is essential tomorrow, it would be an end to this dark, lawless period in American constitutional government.

If They're Right..

it means Obama is about to win a blowout victory. If Gallup is accurate here, and the national turnout is about 140 million, that means Obama wins the popular vote by around 15,000,000.

Another national survey finds the Democrats with the widest lead of ANY party in the generic Congressional preference contest since 1964, the year of LBJ's huge victory over Goldwater.

No complacency! No over-confidence! Go vote on Tuesday! Help other Obama voters get to the polls!

Go for the biggest victory we can win.  

America deserves it.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

The Great Debate!

Ah Yes! Cheney Endorses McSame

I have argued again and again that McCain's election would simply constitute a third term for George Bush and Dick Cheney. I'm glad Cheney agrees:

Cheney has been, by any measure, the worst Vice President in American history, and as deadly a threat to his own country's traditions and security as any leader we have ever had.

It was Cheney who said "Deficits don't matter" while he cheer-led for the policies that have left this nation's economy close to meltdown.

It was Cheney that kept America's energy policy firmly in the hands of the oil industry.

It was Cheney who vigorously sought to use the 9/11 attacks for Republican political advantage.

It was Cheney who, along with Bush, tried to block the 9/11 investigation.

It was Cheney who helped steer lucrative government contracts to his friends and former business associates. Cheney's Halliburton holdings have TRIPLED in value since 2001. He has presided over corruption that borders on fantastic in its scope.

It has been Cheney who has pushed most vigorously for the vast expansion of executive power that has taken place since 2001. He has shown NOTHING but contempt for our nation's constitution.

It was Cheney who was more instrumental than any other person in demanding the Iraq War, and it was Cheney who lied, covered up evidence, and manipulated intelligence to bring it about.

It was Cheney and his "legal" advisers who pushed the hardest for the use of torture against terrorist suspects, undermining a proud American tradition that stretches back to George Washington's time.

It was Cheney's office that deliberately exposed a U.S. CIA operative, doing so strictly to inflict political vengeance, an act that bordered on treason.

It has been Cheney, above all, who has branded anyone who disagreed with his policies as a traitor, a terrorist-sympathizer, and an enemy of America.

It is Dick Cheney who has actually been president for the eight disastrous years we have just been through.

He has manipulated and controlled the empty, narcissistic, morally bankrupt shell of a human named George W. Bush for Cheney's own purposes.

Cheney is so massively unpopular and so widely despised that he hasn't been visible at all in the Republican hate campaign until now. I'm glad he's come out from under his rock. It helps remind people of how much is at stake in this election.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

On the Moral Necessity of Defeating McCain

Josh Marshall says it brilliantly. Excerpt:

I'm under no illusion that negative or even nasty campaigning will come to an end in the USA. I don't think that's realistic or even necessarily desirable. Hard-fought and brass-knuckle politics is something built into the fiber of American politics. It's part and parcel of the intensity of belief and passion that many of us have for the issues at stake in our elections.

But McCain's campaign has devolved into something altogether different ... what with its increasingly open appeals to racial conflict and aggressive invocations of blood hatred of Arabs and Muslims. As The New Republic phrases it, McCain's "subtle incitements of racial warfare and underhanded implications of foreign nativity." Over the months we've become desensitized to the moral depravity of McCain's campaign.

Moral depravity. As good an explanation of the McCain campaign as any I've seen.

Do You Really Want to Know the State of the Race?

First, read this outstanding article about the current polling situation here.

Second, watch for this guy's numbers on Monday night. He nailed the 2004 election EXACTLY.

Third, check out these two sites here and here.

That should hold you for a while.