Saturday, March 06, 2004

Let's Pretend

It is, of course, preposterous. There is no "furor" over the use of 9/11 images in the Bush re-election campaign advertisements. There is opposition to the use of those images, by Democrats and their media allies. But they oppose virtually everything the President does now. They hate issues that work in his favor. And they hate him.

It isn't that Katie Couric, for example, is biased against the President, as is frequently alleged. It's that she's opposed to him personally and politically. That's what's really going on. And everyone knows it.

Media are transparent now. We know what they really think because they can't help themselves. They're so self-involved and self-important, they actually think we care about what they think, instead of what they have learned. What started as a business of reporting has become, in all of its various guises, a platform for opinion.

Of course, the media types still have to pretend. They still have to do the dress-up thing (how do reporters dress?). But that too has become routinized. One of the routines is to proclaim a "furor" and then "report" on it.

New Poll Data

The Opinion Dynamics/Fox News poll is up. It's not good news for Senator Kerry. No one has said a negative word about him in four months and the best he can do is 44 percent.

Tony Blair on The War on Terror

It's an important speech. You can read it here.

Thursday, March 04, 2004

Peggy Noonan

There are good columns and great columns. This is a great one.

Wednesday, March 03, 2004

That's All Folks

I'll be off the blog for a bit, as I attend to other business.

They're Really, Really Angry

They're just not voting. Once again, as measured against 1988, the turnout in state after state was sharply down. This was particularly true in California, New York, Connecticut and Georgia. The turnouts in New York and Connecticut were stunningly low. Not that the TV gasbags have any interest in something as mundane as actual vote. They've got exit polls to misread.

Soul Brother

"President Clinton was often known as the first black president. I wouldn't be upset if I could earn the right to be the second." -- Senator John "Shaft" Kerry, talking to the American Urban Radio Network.

Tuesday, March 02, 2004

Buyer's Remorse

It's not a clean sweep -- Dean wins Vermont! -- but it's the end of Edwards. And therefore Senator John Kerry will be the 2004 Democratic presidential nominee.

Let the buyer's remorse begin!

Let's start with Kerry the candidate, whose tendency to coast is legendary. He's been coasting since New Hampshire, in case you hadn't noticed. Now that he is the nominee, he'll start coasting with a vengeance, driving his handlers to distraction. Sometime in April, this will become a story, as people start to notice that fund-raising is lagging, organization is behind schedule and the rings of consultants start to panic.

Next, let's visit the issue of Kerry the brand. No one knows anything about him, other than the fact that he served in Vietnam and represents Massachusetts in the US Senate. His economic plan has already been dismissed by The Washington Post as a fiscal joke. His various stances on the War on Terror are impossible to fathom. He has no coherent views on cultural issues. In other words, he's an empty net. Look for the Bush campaign to start working on its slapshot.

Finally, let's visit the issue of Kerry the pol. He's the unhappy warrior. And he has very few friends outside of the "band of brothers." The Bush network was and is vast. The Clinton network was vast. The Reagan network was vast. The Nixon network was vast. The Kerry network is astonishingly slight. When things go bad, as they do, you need friends in politics. As Kaus pointed out in his ode to buyer's remorse, Kerry has the fewest friends of any national politician since Carter.

The glue that holds the Kerry campaign together is negative -- "regime change" as Kerry himself puts it. It is a collection of complaints and resentments. Kerry's contempt for President Bush isn't feigned or strategic. It's complete. That works in Boston and New York and Los Angeles. It works with the megaphone media. Whether or not it will work in Ohio and Florida and Tennessee and West Virginia and Iowa and Michigan and Wisconsin is a long bet in a short market.

The Jeane Dixon of Polling

This is what John Zogby has become. It's so embarrassing you can't even look anymore.

Then the Aliens Came

Former Haitian President Aristede is spinning a yarn about an American "coup d'etat" and "kidnapping." American "whites" and American "military" forced him to resign. This from the man who brought "necklacing" to Haiti. The men and women who saved his worthless life now stand accused of heinous acts. This conforms with Ellisblog's second rule of human behavior: No good deed goes unpunished.

Update: The Washington Post has a persuasive account of Aristede's final days and hours.


Dear John Edwards Supporter,

We have received reports that some DFLers in Minnesota are receiving automated phone calls today from a woman attacking John Kerry over his support for NAFTA and claiming to support John Edwards. While we have not heard this call ourselves, it is purportedly rather gruff and rude.

Let me be clear: the Edwards for President Campaign does not approve of, and is in no way affiliated with this call.

John Edwards has run a positive campaign, focused on eliminating the two Americas we have today, lifting up middle class families and making sure we have fair, not just free trade policies. John Edwards has said that he will not use negative attacks to advance his campaign or try to tear down other candidates’ campaigns.

I hope this sets the record straight about our view of these negative tactics.

Please remember to be at your DFL precinct caucus tomorrow, Tuesday at 6:30pm and to vote for John Edwards. We appreciate your support very much.


Tom Ziemba

Minnesota State Director

Edwards for President

Thinking Twice and Thinking Alike

Driving off the cliff with Senator John Kerry is today's Democratic outing. Mickey Kaus explains why Democrats should think twice. His brief on Kerry is exactly right and well worth reading.


Common staph infections have become increasingly resistant to antibiotics. The New York Times report this morning is well worth reading, particularly if you have kids.

Monday, March 01, 2004


All the way to Super Tuesday and still no negative ads. A couple of correspondents have pre-emptively complained that Ellisblog has not given Senator Edwards credit for attacking Senator Kerry in yesterday's debate. Ellisblog responds: reciting the Washington Post doesn't cut it. Another correspondent complains that Ellisblog doesn't appreciate the fact that the Edwards campaign has no money to run negative advertising; his is an entirely free media camapign. Ellisblog responds: who says you have to buy time? Just make the ad, buy one placement and let the free media do the rest. Put chum in the water and the sharks will frenzy.

But it's all long since beside the point. Senator Kerry will be the Democratic nominee. Senator Edwards will not be the vice presidential nominee. If the battleground (as seen through Senator Kerry's eyes) is the Middle West, then keep your eye on Evan Bayh (D-IN). He fits three categories: (1) he won't upstage Kerry, (2) he balances Kerry's liberalism, and (3) he creates a problem for President Bush in Indiana.

This is New York

The White House correspondent from Hell turns out to be the world's worst debate panelist. Who would have thunk it?

Sunday, February 29, 2004

Still The Champ

The golfing press have been gearing up to write the "Tiger Slump" story and were hoping to hang it on the "winless on the western swing" peg. Happily enough, the story died today at LaJolla.