Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Pennsylvania, McCain and Pickett's Charge

Herewith my own take on the new McCain Pennsylvania "strategy" that Mike Crowley brought up here, reconsidered here, and further eludes to here. This sums it up:

The go-north strategy assumes McCain thinks he can hold Virginia. But, even though VA wasn't named in yesterday's CNN story about states at least one McCain insider considers "gone," his chances there are looking awfully bleak, even if you assume a surprise Bradley effect. If Virginia's gone, too, then PA really is McCain's last shot.

I don't get it.

Looking at the polling in PA, it just doesn't seem like a good play. PA has gone blue for the last 4 elections, and Obama is ahead there by double digits--as much as 12 points in some polls. McCain hasn't been ahead in PA in a single poll since at least May. Even when McCain was surging, he wasn't winning PA.

And poster Mike, responding to Crowley's "reconsidered" post, makes nice point:

It's looking more like the primary where Plouffe's ground game built too many firewalls before Hillary invaded a state. Plus, McCain knows the $150 million in October combined with the flood of new donors means Obama began his version of Rove's final 72 hours when polls opened. McCain can burn his time and money in PA for the rest of the week but by early next week he'll know if Obama has already done the job on the ground. At that point he might save a close down ballot race but won't reclaim any state where 1/3 of the vote is locked in and it shows he's several points behind.
So I have to ask myself: is this a hail-Mary, a head-fake, or a kamikaze mission? Somebody help me out here. I agree that taking PA maybe wins McCain the election, VA or no VA--assuming Obama loses all the other battlegrounds: OH and MO and NV and FL and NC, which is not a done deal by any means. (I don't include CO as a battleground anymore; I think it's solid blue in 2008.)

Okay, sure, in that scenario PA wins McCain the election--but that's kind of like R. E. Lee saying, ca March 1865, that taking the Eastern Seaboard brings victory to the Confederacy. Absolutely true, and totally irrelevant, since Lee had no hope of capturing the Eastern Seaboard. And McCain, to my eye, has next to no hope of capturing PA.

Am I just fucked in the head, here? Because I really don't get it. Somebody please help me out, because PA for McCain looks like Pickett's Charge to me.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Powell Endorses....

...Barack Obama.

It's not exactly an original thought that Obama probably locked up this endorsement some time ago, and kept Powell in pocket until the best time.

This was, undoubtedly, the best time, kicking McCain while he's down.

What will be the effect of this endorsement? It's hard to imaging that it's anything but great news for Barack, but what is the magnitude of this vector? I think there may be competing factors here. On the one hand, it further cements American's greater comfort with the idea of Obama as CiC. Notwithstanding the tarnishing of his rep by the UN presentation, Powell still commands great respect in this country. The endorsement also emphasizes that Obama is surrounding himself with, and listening to, some very smart, mainstream political, economic and foreign policy titans. OTOH, there may be an undercurrent of "Powell endorsed Obama cuz he's black." My guess is this view would be held predominantly by people who wouldn't vote for Obama anyway.

So, yeah, net positive for Obama. But the magnitude? The effect on the polls, and the election? Anybody's guess.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

I Just LOVE Electoral Maps

It's a sickness, really. Maybe it's because, perversely, they reinforce the election-as-warfare concept. When you talk about McCain barely holding on south of the Mason-Dixon line, and how Obama has probably taken Virginia and is making inroads in Ohio...jeez, it sounds like something you'd hear in a Ken Burns documentary on the Civil War.

Anyway, I love electoral maps. So here's another cool one to add to your bookmarks. Zogby's interactive electoral map is pretty nifty (not to mention very, very blue right now). CLick on a state and get a succinct analysis of where things stand.

"Racism is a Luxury"

Priceless post from Sean Quinnn at fivethirtyeight.com. They've been tramping across the country, looking at battlegrounds and safe states alike, checking out the electorate, reporting on the ground games (or lack thereof), as part of their "Road to 270" series. Great stuff. But yesterday's installment, on Pennsylvania, takes the cake. Must-read graf:
So a canvasser goes to a woman's door in Washington, Pennsylvania. Knocks. Woman answers. Knocker asks who she's planning to vote for. She isn't sure, has to ask her husband who she's voting for. Husband is off in another room watching some game. Canvasser hears him yell back, "We're votin' for the n***er!"

Woman turns back to canvasser, and says brightly and matter of factly: "We're voting for the n***er."
My country, 'tis of thee...

Friday, October 17, 2008

Tuesday, October 14, 2008


Over on the Stump, Noam Scheiber alerts us to Matt Dowd's comments on McCain's "craven" VEEP pick.

"Craven" is the best way to describe it.

This, for me, should be the gist of it for the electorate. In a desperate bid to solidify his base and pander to the XX half of the electorate, McCain put the entire nation at risk by choosing Sarah Palin.

"Country first," indeed.

"Honor," indeed.

Yes, McCain has bragged of being "the biggest deregulator you ever saw." His economic "plans" are disjointed and ad hoc at best. Unlike the thin gruel of the Ayers association, McCain's Keating Five involvement shows that he's been on the wrong side of issues that have tremendous currency. Even now, he continues to repackage the utter failure that is Reagonomics for the electorate. His obstinate subscription to the Bush foreign policy is a huge black eye, and his repeated references to some undefined, mystical "Victory" in Iraq hints at a disturbing Quixotic neurosis. His campaign has been disorganized, flat-footed, tactical (if you'll forgive) rather than strategic, and in some ways more malevant even than the Rove playbook. Last week his campaign had to pull back from incitations to violence.

And the man is fairly starting to dodder.

But forget all that. Palin alone disqualifies McCain, at the most fundamental level, to be Commander in Chief. In a crunch, at a time of crisis, he put himself ahead of his country, and showed that he could not be trusted to make decisions for the nation. Not only should he not be President, he should retire from public life altogether, in disgrace.

McCain is a man I once admired. Now I am ashamed of him.

Hitchens Endorses Obama...

...with his usual rabid eloquence.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Obama Campaign Leaks Prep Video

I don't know who this kid is, but if the election turns out the way I think it just might, he could have a very bright future. You gotta see this.

"It's Too Late" (for McCain)

Uttered by Joe Scarborough on Colbert. Wow.

More, Scarborogough lays out quite an indictment of the GOP and the Bush Administration. I'll try to get the video clip.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Ladies and Gentlemen, John McCain Has Left The Building!

There seems to be an emerging kerfluffle about how Barack and Michelle hung around to press the flesh in the town hall, while John and Cindy had already got out of Dodge.

Well, okay.

More to the point, the insta-polls show that Obama ran away with it.

Even some conservatives think that, maybe, This Was It. There's just one more debate. If the game hasn't changed by then, it's hard to see how the last debate, so close to the election, changes the course of the cyclone.

A very good night for Obama, on style and politics, and to my eye on points as well. Things are starting to solidify for him.


Buchannan Speaks

The foxy old bigoted warhorse, whom my wife and I suspect actually lives in television studios, is nevertheless a very smart political observor, and he's the first besides the anchors to make the call on MSNBC. There are caveats peppered throughout his assessment, and he thinks both Obama and, particularly, McCain, helped themselves tonight. But then there's this summation:

"...[Obama] surivived the second battle and....he's nine points ahead." (Emphasis Buchannan's.)

Update: here's TNR's assessment--"Obama Crushes McCain." Partisan? You betcha. I don't think anybody got "crushed."

First Impression

No blowouts, no game changers. Kind of a yawner, actually. If there were any watch-checking moments or major gaffes, I didn't catch them. I think the healthcare responsibility-vs.-right thing may blow up, and not to Mac's benefit. And there was absolutely no mention, not even tangentially, of Ayers, Wright or Keating. And Obama never brought up the issue of McCain's recent pivot to slime.

It seems to me, and yes I'm biased, but I feel as if Obama kept hammering on stuff that's been working for him, and McCain kept hammering on stuff that...hasn't been working for him.

McCain definitely looks like a plausible president, to be sure, and he looks the old warrior, but old he looks, and there's still some anger simmering under the surface. Obama looks confident, relaxed, poised, smart, presidential and....tall. Is Kennedy-esque going too far?

There seemed to be an undercurrent of Rope-a-Dope here. McCain kept swinging, but Obama never really responded in kind. He just kept sidestepping and head-bobbing.

So far in the debates, the insta-polls from the networks have predicted the responses in the polls. We'll see how it goes this time. But I don't see a game changer here. The way things stand, McCain needs a blowout. Obama just needs to maintain.

So I doubt that McCain saved his campaign tonite.

What Don't You Know, and How Will You Learn It?

Question is too clever by half, but Obama's immediate response is affecting: "My wife could tell you all about that." Says "country" when he means to say "world." Talks about the American Dream, and its accelerated decrepitude in the last 8 years. We can't fix it if we keep doing the same things (implicit: as McCain will do.)

With his last words, McCain raises the specter of the unknown, and talks about how he was raised by a single mom, too, because dad was at sea. Trying to project toughness and patriotism. "I'm asking the American people to give me one more opportunity."

And then, an interesting use of the past tense: "The great honor of my life was always to put my country first."

Have We Got Israel's Back?

McCain's approach to the questioner is very effective. Aaaaaannnnnd we're back to the sit-down-without-preconditions non-issue. Iranian nukes are bad.

"My friend." Buvez, mes amis.

What About Vlad?

Mac: "We're not gonna have another cold war." Really? Then he immediately raises the spectre of a successor to the old Soviet Union. The "I saw three letters, KGB" line, again. Waiting for him to nail Obama on his "wrong" call on Georgia. Doesn't come yet.

O, you want to send money to Georgia? Excuse me. Obama is a little too halting in this answer. And he gives us another I-told-you-so riff vis-a-vis Georgia, probably trying to pre-empt Mac from correcting his lapse above.

Brokaw: "Is Russia an evil empire? Yes or no?"

Obama: Not a yes or no answer.
McCain: "Maybe."

Mac never does cover his missed opportunity with the Georgia issue on this question.

Should We Go After Al-Qaeda in Pakistan?

Obama calls his questioner by name, and makes the question about Mess-O-Potamia. His answer is smart and rational. In the first debate, Obama was able to use this issue to sound tougher on terrorism than McCain. Now he's trying to do it again.

Mac: "Teddy Roosevelt is my hero." Then he Walks Softly and Talks a Big Stick. Again, I don't think this argument works against Obama, regardless of its merits, because he's trying to rebut Obama's "I will go in there and kill Bin Laden" argument. Oh, and I visited Waziristan. Yes, John, we know.

Kefluffle about followups.

O: "Nobody called for the invasion of Pakistan." Calls McCain on some of his own rash statements, and puts him on the defensive.

"I'll get Osama my friends." Open wide, puppies.

Bottom line short answer to the question, should we go after Al-Qaeda in Pakistan?

O: "Yes."
M: "I've been to Waziristan."

So far, I haven't seen a game-changer.

Can We Afford to Be the World's Cop?

Mr. Elliott asks McCain if our economic crisis will affect our ability to act as a peacekeeper in the world. McCain doesn't answer him by name.

"My Friends." Don't argue baby. Just swallow.

Mac: We're number one, and you can't put a price on that. I've got the experience. I've got the judgement. Wait for it: Obama fought the surge.

Yep. There it is. In all fairness, not a bad answer.

"My friend." Suck it down, bro.

Obama: A reprise on the "you were wrong" refrain. And then he ties Iraq neatly to the economy. Yes, we are number one...but we won't be if we keep hemorrhaging cash. Nice answer.

A fair enunciation of the Obama doctrine.

McCain elides the question to attack Obama again. How in the hell does this help him? This is the same stuff they hashed out in the first debate to no salutary effect for McCain. "YOu need a cool hand at the tiller." And, um, we should think that's you, after the last few weeks? But McCain's answer is still not half-bad, even though it probably echoes Obama's a little more than Steve Schmidt would like.

Health Care as a Commodity

Obama needs to address this questioner by name and he doesn't. But his answer is smart.

Sometimes obama's speech patterns are pretty halting. I'm waiting for him to go to his "Mac will tax your coverage" meme.

McCain's "Obama will fine you" for not getting/providing healthcare is a good jibe. Will it stick?

McCain says healthcare is a "responsibility" not a right. That...is the wrong answer. Will Obama take that opening?

"It should be a right for every American." And he brings his Mom into it.

Obama makes a medical error on asthma but makes a good stab at McCain on S-Chip. Overall a good answer.

What Will You Do On The Environment?

Almost all the questions so far are on the economy, and even this one mentions it.

"My friends." Glug, glug, glug.

"What's the best way of fixing it? Nuclear power." And Mac dismisses Obama's caveat that nukes must be safe. McCain's riffing on the power of the American workforce pretty effectively.

O: "If we can create a new energy economy we can create 5 million new jobs."

Counters on Johnny's nukes allegation effectively. Nails Mac to his Senate record.

"We can't drill our way out of the crisis."

On the followup: should be have a Manhattan-type project or a garage project?

Kinduv a bogus either-or question.

McCain's attitude is suddenly snarky and preening, at least to my eye.

Doesn't McCain's ending remark about Obama's support of storage and reproceesing of fuel make Obama's point for him?

Entitlement Programs

Obama quickly makes this about the tax code, so that he can respond to McCain's last thrust and also elaborate on his tax plan. Almost a hint of outrage when he talks about McCain's tax plan--"unfair."

"My friends." Drink, damn you.

Back to bipartisanship, and how Obama doesn't fight with his party. Again.

McCain wants a commission on Medicare.

McCain looks awfully scrunched up. But he prowls across the stage.

"My friends." Drink!

What Sacrifices Will You Make?

McCain goes off on earmarks again. And then this insane idea of a spending freeze again. Obama needs to go after this.

Obama's answer is, to my ear, pretty damn smart. I'm not going to cut your programs; I'm going to ask you to cut your energy expenditure, and I'm going to ask Big Energy to step up to the plate.

"He wants to raise taxes." McCain compares Obama to Hoover. Ouch. Obama wants to kill small business. He's gonna steal your jobs!

Obama is chomping at the bit to respond...

How Can We Trust You Guys?

Are Obama's numbers on the deficit correct?

Both candidates are trying to put this on the kitchen table. Obama may be doing better, but only a little.

McCain answers with his record on bipartisanship, and how Obama has never been a maverick. Always Look For The Liberal Label. And we're on the earmarks again. I think his "look at our records" gambit may set O up for a response. Let's see...

McCain cops out on the priorities followup. Then pivots to the bipartisanship riff again. Build nuke plants, create jobs. Actually, he doesn't sound half-bad on energy. Two more "my friends" shots.

Obama, on the other hand answers the question "just like a family has to prioritize." And, oh, by the way, it's about your gas tank, your health care...

Oh, and back to that "look at records" bit...excellent riposte by Obama.

Brokaw bitching about time. Fuck, dude, you're the moderator.

How Does the Bailout Help?

McCain sez it's not a bailout, it's a rescue. Why in the world does he want to bring up his campaign suspension again? Not a good idea.

Here comes the Freddie-Fannie association...and the word "crony." Unbelievable.

McCain is promising to buy your mortgage. This is his Drama moment tonight. The enormity of it is just beginning to dawn on me. It may be the biggest pander of all time.

Obama: I told ya so (in re deregulation). Decent response to McCain's fannie-freddie jibe.

Brokaw bogusely tries to put words in Obama's mouth. Obama waves him off.

McCain pushing this huge mortgage pander again. Obama's name was not on some letter. Okay. So? Now some smart riffing on the strenght of American workers.

Liveblogging the Debate

Slightly different approach tonight than in the last one; I'll go by questions. And I'm hoping my good pal Steve Eley will be able to join us.

First up on Brokaw's agenda, of course, is the economy. Obama goes first, and immediately calls the questioner by name and immediately pins it to the Middle Class, and pins it on Bush, the GOP and McCain. Starts talking specifics, and pivots quickly to his middle class tax cut, projects to keep people in their jobs, energy, etc. Ties it all together. Decent answer.

McCain immediately tries to make it a needle on the Town Hall "issue." He goes to the deficit and reforms again...not sure that's a winner for him. He wants the treasury to buy up bad mortgages?!? Talk about doubling down. If you're drinking a shot for every "my friends," you just took your first hit.

McCain initially has no idea who to put in the Sec of Treasury post. Pulls out Warren Buffet and Meg Whitman. Okay. Hope OBama's thought about the answer to this question...yep, Buffet again, but Obama's quickly moving to empathizing with the struggling voters.

And Now For Something Completely Different

Back to science, which is what this blog is supposed to be partly about. We've been fiddling around, trying to get a working rat hypothermia model that's clinically relevant. We think we've got it now, and yesterday we tried our new system, the Arctic Rat (TM) suit, while monitoring both rectal temperature (body core temperature) and temporal muscle temperature ( a surrogate for brain temperature) in a rat under general anesthesia. Here are the results.

A couple of notes. The temperature is reported, obviously, in deg C. The x-axis time points are every five minutes, so the experiment went from 0 to 90 minutes. Target temp was 32 deg C, which is as far as we intend to go with the current study. That's equivalent to 89.6 deg F, or 9 degrees F lower than body temp. The top two curves are core temp and temporal muscle temp, and they correlate very nicely. The third curve down is the ambient temp (yeah, it's hot down here). The next curve is tank temperature; this is the temperature of coolant we used. The bottom curve is the difference between the two temps, which got tighter quickly and stayed that way; it was always under our max acceptable diff of 2 deg C.

What I'm happiest about is that we were able to get to our target temp quickly and then keep it pretty much on target with minimal adjustments of tank temperature. This model is almost ready for prime time. We have to tweak our sedation method and make sure the core and temporalis temperatures correlate with brain temperature, but once all that's done we're In Like Flynn. Hypothermia for brain ischemia is hot, and we're eager to explore not only its therapeutic benefit but also just exactly what it does at the molecular level.

How To Go From Straight-Talkin' War Hero To Grampa Simpson In Six Months Flat

There was a time when, as an Arizona native, I admired my state's junior senator, John McCain. I saw him as a true American, a moderate, and yes, as a straight talker. In 2000, when he ran against W, I was seriously ambivalent. On the one hand, I wanted W to win the nomination, because I thought he was a lightweight (boy was I wrong). OTOH, I wanted Mac to win, because I thought if a Republican were to win the White House, Mac wouldn't be too bad, and please Jesus oh please don't let W run the country (boy, was I right).

All that is gone now. McCain has shown us his true colors. Here's a nice piece from John Heileman at the New Yorker on how McCain blew it.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

"...a very aggressive last 30 days"

Interesting piece from Liz Sidoti of the Associated Press, putting the last 30 days of the race into perspective.

Some Republicans close to McCain's campaign fret in private that Obama may be pulling away for good; others aren't so pessimistic. But there's unanimity in this; McCain has dwindling chances to regain momentum in the face of stiff headwinds, and the upcoming debates are critical.

The conclusion that follows for McCain and the GOP is clear. Time to go scorched earth and start lobbing mustard gas:

GOP operatives say the goal is to undercut Obama, likely by raising questions about his associations with convict Antoin "Tony" Rezko, a former Obama top fundraiser, and Bill Ayers, a founder of a 1960s radical group.

"We're looking at a very aggressive last 30 days of turning the page on this financial crisis and getting back to discussing Mr. Obama's aggressively liberal record and how he will be too risky for Americans," senior adviser Greg Strimple told reporters Thursday.

Don ponchos and gas masks. Fix bayonets. It's about to get ugly.


Update: See also this from Pollster.com.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Biden v. Palin: Preliminary Polls

I can't believe these results. I figured if Palin showed up and didn't self-immolate, the "soft bigotry of low expectations" would give her the prize with the voters. But here's a preliminary CBS poll of undecideds:

Forty-six percent of the uncommitted voters surveyed say Democrat Joe Biden won the debate, compared to 21 percent for Republican Sarah Palin. Thirty-three percent said it was a tie.

Eighteen percent of previously uncommitted percent say they are now committed to the Obama-Biden ticket. Ten percent say they are now committed to McCain-Palin. Seventy-one percent are still uncommitted.

Both candidates improved their overall image tonight. Fifty-three percent of those surveyed say they now have a better impression of Biden. Five percent say they have a worse opinion of the Delaware senator, while 42 percent say they debate did not change their opinion.

Fifty-five percent say they now have a better opinion of Palin. Fourteen percent say they have a worse opinion, while 30 percent say their opinion hasn't changed.

After the debate, 66 percent see Palin as knowledgeable about important issues – up from 43 percent before the debate. But Biden still has the advantage on this – 98 percent saw him as knowledgeable after the debate. That figure was 79 percent before the debate.

Two thoughts: either this is completely off the wall, or undecided voters actually saw the same debate I did, and judged it not on the basis of expectations but on the actual issues.

538 is reporting similar numbers from CNN. Stand by.

Blogging the Debate

A semi-masturbatory stream-of-consciousness exercise in solo debate watching:

On the first question, about the bailout, Palin's answer is rehearsed, but clear and well-delivered. On the very next question, Biden gives a quick answer about bipartisanship and then pivots to attack McCain. Palin's response is, again, canned, but not half-bad. Pretty good, actually. If she keeps this up she's gonna make a lot of people on the right very happy.

Palin is talking directly to Joe Six Pack.

Biden looks a little somber. So far he's limiting his attacks to John McCain, effectively ignoring Palin.

...Until now. "The governor did not answer about deregulation."

Now we're on taxes. Biden's answer is effective and to the point. Palin responds with Biden's "paying taxes is patriotic" gaffe. OTOH, she seems to be referring to her notes. But she's knows she's doing well, and it shows.

But Biden's doing well to. On the McCain's health care tax, he's talking right to Middle America, and effectively.

On "what will you give up," Biden gives a very brief token answer then effectively elides the issue and makes it about McCain's economic plan. Palin isn't anywhere near answering the question, but instead makes it about her reformer issue and attacks Obama. Ifill calls her on it. Palin's answer is effusive, but pretty lame on substance.

As of right now, I think Palin has more than cleared the low bar set for her by expectations going into the debate.

On climate change, Sarah starts to babble just a bit.

Biden looks at his notes too, but his riposte on cliate change is solid. Sarah Palin says she doesn't want to argue about the cause, just fix it. How, asks Biden, can you fix it if you don't know what's causing it.

On energy, Palin is certainly holding her own.

Biden just said "same sex marriage." Oops. Palin pounces. But I think the exchange diffuses to nobody's particular benefit.

"Your plan is a white flag of surrender in Iraq." Ow. Let's see how Biden responds. He'd better. Nope. Maybe indirectly. We'll see how that plays out in the spin.

Palin: "nuke-yoo-lar." Heh heh.

This won't be a blowout for either side. Looks like it's gonna be a tie, and that goes to Palin.

Argument on Afghanistan works well for Palin, although not against Biden.

Not sure how Biden's passion on Darfur will play with the electorate.

Biden's getting wordier.

Still, if it were anybody but Palin up there, I think Biden would be widely considered to have performed a crushing victory. Won't play that way, though.

On the VP question, both of them get back to the treasured middle class voter.

"There you go again."

On VP as subject to the executive, Palin is seriously babbling. Biden schools her.

Biden suddenly chokes up. Very affecting. Suddenly Palin's response seems cold in comparison.

I'm getting seriously tired of Palin's "lifted" Reagan quips. And if I hear "maverick" one more time....

Right on cue, Biden skewers the "maverick" myth, and makes a moving appeal to the Middle Class at the same time. Beautiful.

I can't escape this impression:

Palin: cutesy-poo. Well-prepared.
Biden: passionate. Steeped in the issues.

Now, stand by for the spin. I note that a Palin gaffe has been reported already: she botched the name of the commander in Afghanistan.

If The Real Thing Don't Do The Trick You Better Make Up Something Quick

Ann Wilson will always be a babe to me, no matter how roughly time treats her. But I have to say she hasn't been this sexy in a long time.

Michigan Just Lost More Jobs

McCain just yanked his campaign from the Wolverine State.

There's absolutely no way to read this as anything but an ominous development for Johnny Mac. Presumably, new numbers in FL, OH, NV and NC are scaring the living bejeezus out of him, and rightly so. To be real, I think Obama has had MI in the bag for a couple weeks at least--and judging by the last several election cycles, where MI toyed with being a swing state but always broke for the Dem, it was probably never really in play to start with. Smarter for a desperate McCain campaign to try to deprive Obama of VA, NV, NH--and maybe Colorado, although I think there is probably no Rocky Mountain High for McCain in November. And McCain simply cannot afford for FL to be in play. So this was a smart move for him, although definitely not one they wanted to make. McCain's recent "life's not fair" remark is another sign of the grim mood on the Straight Talk Depress. It's not over till it's over, and I still think the 3N threat is a very real one to Obama, but McCain had better get some damn good news, and real soon. It's crunch time.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Breath of "Fresh Air" on Wall Street

Wow. Busy blogging day today. Guess I'm trying to make up for lost time.

Today's interview by Terry Gross is Must Listening*...and a much more eloquent and informed take on the issues I addressed in a recent post.

*Audio will be available soon.

Don't Mean A Thing If You Ain't Got That Swing

There's much good news for Obama (and precious little for McCain) in today's Quinnipiac swing state analysis.

Update: The Q-polls have been absorbed by Nate Silver and there's a rare early post at 538. Today's projection shows Obama winning about 85% of 10,000 simulation runs, with 51.4% of the popular vote, and carrying the Kerry States + OH, FL, NV, NM and CO, for a total of 336 EVs. Is that what November 4th will look like? Don't believe it for a minute. All elections tighten. This one will do the same--only more so, I predict--and I just can't believe that Obama will carry OH and FL. The 3N vote will be strong in those states.

But right now, Obama doesn't need OH and FL. This is the best Obama has looked on 538 all year (RCP and Electoral-vote.com give similar strong showings on their electoral maps). Going into October, this is definitely his election to lose.

Fair and Balanced Pennsylvania Coffee Shop Banana Split

Fuckin' hilarious.