s skippy the bush kangaroo: July 2008

skippy the bush kangaroo

Thursday, July 31, 2008

skippy's thursday nite music club

godsmack - whatever - live!

live at camp pendleton...w/special guest shredder sgt. wesley dimwitty

posted by skippy at 11:51 PM | 0 comments

mcmuffin's stupid ad backfires

john mcmuffin's latest ad comparing obama to paris hilton, would be right on the money, if only the hiltons thought so. martin eisenstadt's blog:

i hate to be the bearer of bad news, but it seems that the new mccain ad criticizing obama for being a celebrity has ruffled some unintended feathers. i, for one, quite liked the ad, but i hear whispers from the inner campaign staff that the phone was burning off the hook today with calls from paris hilton’s grandfather, william barron hilton (co-chair of the hilton hotel empire), furious that the mccain ad drew an unflattering comparison between obama and his own granddaughter.

it seems that the elder hilton has donated $18,400 to the mccain campaign, and $35,000 to the national republican senatorial committee in the last couple of years. (paris’s father, rick hilton, has given an additional $6,900 to the mccain campaign. suffice it to say, he’s none too pleased either.)..

i suspect that heads will roll at the mccain headquarters - if not within the staff, then i wouldn’t be surprised if steve schmidt starts looking for a new consulting firm for the next round of ads. this is a reminder to my brethren at the campaign: don’t bite the hand that feeds us.

paris hilton isn’t just a tabloid tart to be tossed around willy-nilly. she’s the living brand name of one of america’s most successful global corporations. it’s no wonder her grandfather’s upset: every time paris is in the news, fewer people stay at their hotels. try explaining that to the blackstone group - the hedge fund firm that bought into hilton hotels last year. blackstone chairman peter g. peterson gave $30,800 to the mccain campaign this year. guess who also called the campaign today?
meanwhile, obama's camp is countering w/an online site called the lowroadexpress.com. (we were not able to open the site ourselves, which may give the obama campaign pause as it its functionality...what good is a refuting if no one can read it?)

(thx to memeorandum for the initial link!)
posted by skippy at 2:36 PM | 10 comments

say hello

to the pfc. lavena johnson petition.

tho we are sad to have to be able to say hello to this blog.

for those of you unfamilair w/pvt. johnson's story, crooks&liars has a good wrap up of her tragic life and death:

nicole and i have both written posts about the mysterious circumstances surrounding the death of pfc lavena johnson, and democracy now! had a heartbreaking interview with her family last week. lavena’s family has worked hard to find the truth about her death and have finally had a breakthrough in the case. unfortunately, the new details they uncovered are so disturbing that they could potentially make the pat tillman and jessica lynch stories pale in comparison. the above video from cenk of the young turks captures my exact feelings about this horrific case. what you’re about to read will sicken and enrage you.

the army claims the 5’1” african-american soldier from north county died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound with a rifle on july 19, 2005. her father, john h. johnson, ph.d. of florissant, said color photos and documents obtained under the freedom of information act from the military suggest otherwise.

“our worst fears were substantiated when we started going through information from the army,” johnson said.

he said the pictures and documents from the incident proved that his daughter had been brutalized - raped, beaten, shot and set on fire.

“someone poured lye in her vagina to destroy evidence,” her father said. “her body was dumped in a dirty, filthy contractor’s tent. read on…
this was not a suicide. contact your representatives in the house and senate to demand a full scale congressional investigation begin immediately. this crime and obvious cover up cannot go unpunished.
posted by skippy at 2:24 PM | 2 comments

lt. governor john garamendi

Patty and John Garamendi
Originally uploaded by posimage40
announced today that he is looking to drop the lt. part of his title.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:35 AM | 1 comments

mission canyon...death trap?

my "stepfather" had tales of dealing with one of the major fires we had here in santa bar-b-que and mission canyon many years ago...but there are far more homes and people living up in the canyon than ever before.

View Larger Map
sometimes when ralph daniel looks out the huge plate-glass windows of his 1959 ranch house, a bobcat stares back at him from the patio. he delights in the quiet, the bird songs, the expansive view of the santa ynez mountains.

like millions of other californians, daniel, 63, likes to live on nature's edge. he is a 10-minute drive from both downtown santa barbara and los padres national forest. but he has no illusions. one day he expects to see a wildfire bolt through the chaparral and down the slopes toward his house on the fringes of mission canyon.

"that's where i think it's going to come from," he says, pointing to a ridgeline from a seat on his patio.

when it does, getting out could be a nightmare. like many rustic communities in the
west, mission canyon is a maze of narrow, twisting roads, dead-end drives and too few exits. - latte times

i remember many fond years up in mission canyon...the sound of the creek...the animals...the wild turkeys...the neighbors donkey. but, you have to be prepared to let go of your possessions in a seconds notice now with the area lacking in water.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 10:34 AM | 0 comments

elizabeth taylor *update*

Elizabeth Taylor
Originally uploaded by twm1340
has been reported to be on life support....**update** liz is said to be fine....and will be heading home from hospital.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 8:31 AM | 7 comments

mad about media sheep

mad kane, that is!
posted by skippy at 3:58 AM | 0 comments

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

skippy's wednesday nite music club - rip jo stafford

tonite we take a moment to mourn the passing earlier this month of the inestimable jo stafford. she was known as one of the premier american standard, swing and jazz singers of the last century. here she is solo:

jo stafford - the gentleman is a dope

and here she is with the group she started with, the pied pipers:

pied pipers - it started all over again

bloomberg tells us:

jo stafford, who sang backup for frank sinatra and performed with tommy dorsey, died july 16 at her century city, california, home, the new york times reported. she was 90.

the biggest hit for stafford, a singer in the pied pipers and then a soloist, was ``you belong to me'' in 1952, which sold 2 million copies, the newspaper said. her death, caused by congestive heart failure, was confirmed by her son, tim weston, the newspaper said.

a performer from the late 1930s until the mid-1950s, stafford started singing with her older sisters in a country- western group called the stafford sisters, then joined seven men as the pied pipers, the newspaper said. the octet was cut to a quartet and joined the tommy dorsey band, and became backup singers for frank sinatra, the newspaper said.

while recording with capitol records, stafford toured with the u.s.o. in 1944 and 1945, earning her the ``g.i. jo'' nickname from servicemen, the newspaper said.
of particular interest to skippy international was jo's work in musical parody. w/her husband paul weston, she helped to create the fictious and simply awful lounge act jonathan and darlene edwards, which spawned much speculation as to the true identities of the two terrible performers, and several records, with one winning a grammy for best comedy record in 1961.

jo's melodious caressing of lyrics and her enthusiasm and energy will certainly be missed.
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 2 comments

oil derrilicks....the ocean fleas

ocean fleas
Originally uploaded by zinkwazi
the rethugs out to rape and pillage our backyard for their own financial gain.

we must fight back. we must.
posted by SantaBarbarian at 10:34 PM | 0 comments

quote of the day

blue texan over @ fdl:

mcsame's promise to run an honorable campaign is holding up about as well as his wedding vows to his first wife.
posted by skippy at 6:33 PM | 1 comments

water finds its own level; or, dancing w/ the stupids

what else can we add to this? dan quayle is on the short list for next season's dancing w/the stars. realitytvworld:

former u.s. vice president dan quayle is on "the short list" of celebrity participants currently being courted by abc for dancing with the stars seventh season, gossipsauce.com reported monday.

the 61-year-old quayle is a former indiana senator and also served as vice president under george h. w. bush from 1989 to 1993.

should he actually be cast for dancing with the stars, quayle would actually be the second politician to appear on the show -- following in the footsteps of third-season participant jerry springer, who had previously served as the mayor of cincinnati.
we don't know which is sadder: a former vice president stooping to appear on reality tv, or actually considering jerry springer a politician.

we understand dick cheney applied to be on fear factor; not as a contestant, but rather as the fear factor itself.

posted by skippy at 5:44 PM | 1 comments

riverboat ring your bell! fair thee well, anna belle! luck is the lady that he knows the best!

blue girl, red state finds the origin of the word maverick, which might make john mcmuffin want to rethink using that moniker for his reputation:

in the mid-1800's a new england lawyer named samuel maverick decided to try his hand at ranching in the san antonio river valley, but he was something of a stubborn sumbitch who thought he knew better than everyone else, and refused to brand his cattle. in less than a year, he discovered that his avaricious neighbors and outright rustlers had made off with his stock, so in spite of having good land and plentiful water, he was out of business in a year because he neglected the basics.

soon the texans of that era and area were applying the term derisively, to mean a person who was too stubborn or stupid to attend to business and ended up losing their shirt.
posted by skippy at 5:40 PM | 2 comments

a bone to pick with t boone

he's not quite the "white knight" as his newest marketing techniques may lead us to believe...

beyond wind plan, pickens eyes pipelines in drought-ridden us. while t. boone pickens has detailed his plans to develop windpower in the us, he has a lesser-known plan centered on becoming a water baron. - popular mechanics.
but oil is a thing of the past for pickens; the article claims he is now the largest single individual owner of water rights in the usa. he owns a huge ranch in roberts county, tx, and would like to pump ground water from the ogallala aquifer beneath his ranch and sell it to thirsty texas cities.

how much? try 200,000 acre-feet per year. he can pump this much because of texas' quaint ground water law, "the right of capture", aka "the law of the biggest pump." if you own land, you can sink a well and pump virtually to your heart's content. doesn't matter whether you own one acre or 68,000, the size of pickens' ranch. - waterwired
problem is....the ogallala aquifer is drying up.

water for pickens' plan would come from the panhandle portion of the ogallala aquifer. one of the largest underground repositories of water in the world, the ogallala stretches from texas to south dakota and once held more water than lake huron. that was a century ago, before the advent of cheap electric pumps gave farmers the power to lift water hundreds of feet. statistics on the ogallala are unreliable, but here's one: the aquifer waters one-fifth of the nation's irrigated land. and here's another: in less than a decade from its peak in 1978, the area of agricultural land irrigated by the ogallala fell by 20 percent, at least partly because of the ogallala's depletion.

the ogallala isn't like rivers, lakes or even most other aquifers: it has no source of replenishment. it holds "fossil water," sealed underground for hundreds of thousands of years. once it's used, it's gone forever. now, as the ogallala's water level continues to fall, pickens is proposing to expand its use, so far chiefly agricultural, to include supplying large, distant cities. - salon.com (2001)

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:24 AM | 6 comments

this is why skippy is in show biz

the hill.com has their annual "50 most beautiful people on capitol hill" feature - and if this is what passes for beautiful inside the beltway, that explains standards on other concepts like ethics and justice.

not that any of these people are ugly, by any stretch of the imagination. but, being "not ugly" is not the same as being "beautiful."

we think it was bill maher who is taking credit for the phrase that "politics is hollywood for ugly people." this feature, purportedly highlighting the most gorgeous in washington, seems to bear that out.

now, we don't mean to be catty about how people look. tho it must be pointed out that all 50 of these "capitol hill beautiful people" obviously posed for this feature, and must thereby consider themselves to be qualified to be counted as among the most attractive inside the beltway. so they are big boys and girls, they can take what we dish out.

but we only mean to use the hill's application of standards as a metaphor for what else goes on in dc.

just as being "not ugly" is not tantamount to being "beautiful," it also follows that being "not malicious" is not the same as being "beneficial;" that being "not destructive" is not the same as being "constructive;" that being "not highly immoral" is not the same as being "highly moral."

that being "not evil" is not the same as being "good."

[addendum: we thought of an even better phrase during lunch: "not going backward" is not the same as "going forward."]

dc is a place where good enough is; where just getting thru the day without getting slimed (or caught) is an achievement worth drinking one's self into oblivion over; where keeping the status quo is seen as progress.

we have no solutions, other than to keep harping at american citizens to be ever-vigilant about those they vote into office and their lackeys. democracy, as has been said, is not a spectator sport.

we must insist the denizens of dc raise their standards in all things; and to be perfectly honest, the gorgeousness of people is actually the last quality we care about in our government employees; let's get them to aim for justice, fairness and compassion first.

(tip o'the kangaroo tail to memeorandum for the link!)
posted by skippy at 10:09 AM | 7 comments

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

skippy's tuesday nite music club

in honor's of today's temblor in la...

carole king - i feel the earth move under my feet


big joe turner - shake, rattle and roll
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 7 comments

in honor of our little "foot massage" today

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 5:29 PM | 0 comments

because when you need good essay writing, you naturally turn to musicians

over at larghearted boy, the boy has asked his musician friends to write their thoughts about "why obmama" in an on-going feature.

essayists include greg saunier of deerhoof, and alina simone. hopefully more will be forthcoming.
posted by skippy at 4:34 PM | 0 comments

get a room already

via c&l, help media matters hold the press accountable for their obvious mclame man-love:

sign the petition.

remember, the center for media affairs at george mason university found that obama got far more negative press on the big three networks than mcsame (72% negative for obama to 57% negative for mclame).
posted by skippy at 4:16 PM | 0 comments

true hero in ken. church shootings - a liberal

via ian welch @ fdl:

something about the knoxville killings touched me, though. i saw the picture of the guy who did the killing "so ordinary" said the neighbours, "he seemed like a nice man" and i couldn't but agree. but what touched me, more, was this - a man named greg mckendry. mckendry's dead now, and he's dead because of this: he deliberately shielded others from a shotgun blast.

you don't survive that, and he had to know it. so he knew what he was doing, and he made a decision—to put the lives of others above his own.

then the congregants tackled the shooter, took him down, and held him for police.

love of others, sacrifice for others, and calm collective action to deal with a threat.

they say that unitarians are the most liberal church around.

i don't know if that's true, but in the face of tragedy, unitarians certainly showed what liberalism should be.
to which we can only add, remember that the liberals of the unitarian church disarmed the nutcase w/in 5 minutes of shooting, and they had no weapons.

god bless greg mckendry.

(addendum: ian provided us w/a link to the story)
posted by skippy at 4:08 PM | 3 comments


aftershocks LA - quick snapshot
Originally uploaded by ttnk
alot of them.
posted by SantaBarbarian at 3:13 PM | 0 comments

if this city's rockin', don't come knockin'

a 5.8 earthquake has just hit the greater los angeles area. things fell off the shelf here at skippy international, but as of this writing, there are no injuries.

there have been three 3.8 aftershocks, so far.

updating later.
posted by skippy at 12:00 PM | 5 comments

say hello

tot he grateful dissident.
posted by skippy at 11:22 AM | 1 comments

baked alaska

sen. ted "bridge to nowhere" stevens has been indicted. mcclatchey:

sen. ted stevens, the longest-serving republican in the u.s. senate and one of the chamber's most powerful members, was indicted tuesday in washington for failing to disclose more than $250,000 worth of gifts that he received from businessmen who were seeking his help on federal issues and projects.

the seven-count indictment charges stevens with making false statements by failing to disclose things of value he received from the veco corp., an alaska-based oil services compmany, and from its ceo, bill allen, over an eight-year period.

the indictment charges that among the undeclared items were substantial improvements to stevens' home in girdwood, alaska; automobile exchanges in which he received new vehicles that were worth far more than the old ones he exchanged; and household goods, including a viking gas grill.
gas grill? we are above making the obvious senate-gas equvialency joke here, but apparently bill allen cooperated w/the investigation (presumably to cut a better deal for himself). cbs reminds us:

stevens has been the subject of a wide-ranging investigation -- and with this announcement -- stevens becomes the highest level politician charged in the department's crackdown on alleged corruption, cbs news reports.

steven's home was raided by the fbi last year with investigators taking a close look at renovations done on his alaska home.
sen. stevens is known as the man who got pork for his pet project, the bridge to nowhere, a $223 million transportation project which connected ketchikan, a tiny alaskan town to gravina, a tiny alaskan island. the 2005 repubbblican congress defeated a concurrent measure to help hurricane-ravaged new orleans in favor of this bridge.

readers of this space also recognize sen. stevens as a staunch opponent of net neutrality, the man who described the web as "a series of tubes."

(thanks to firedoglake and memeorandum for the links!)
posted by skippy at 11:02 AM | 2 comments

la is one big freeway

tales of the freeway blogger in los angeles.
posted by skippy at 10:57 AM | 0 comments


my...what a wide political stance "larry" has.

some democratic campaign buttons made for distribution in idaho show an unlikely pair: democratic presidential candidate barack obama and republican sen. larry craig. but don't expect the staunch republican to throw his support behind obama or for the presidential candidate to ask craig to change his mind and run for senate again. apparently the button manufacturer picked a picture of the wrong idaho larry. - seattletimes

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 8:13 AM | 2 comments

Monday, July 28, 2008

skippy's monday nite music club

vic damone & debbie reynolds - imagine

not the john lennon song you're thinking about, this is a number from the otherwise forgettable film athena
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 2 comments

just in case, we want all wackos w/guns out there, to know that we are 'moderate.' yeah, that's it, 'moderate.'

the man who shot up a church, killing two and wounding several others, loved to read hannity, o'reilly and michael wiener. knoxville news-sentinel:

police found right-wing political books, brass knuckles, empty shotgun shell boxes and a handgun in the powell home of a man who said he attacked a church in order to kill liberals "who are ruining the country," court records show.

knoxville police sunday evening searched the levy drive home of jim david adkisson after he allegedly entered the tennessee valley unitarian universalist church and killed two people and wounded six others during the presentation of a children's musical…

adkisson targeted the church, still wrote in the document obtained by wbir-tv, channel 10, "because of its liberal teachings and his belief that all liberals should be killed because they were ruining the country, and that he felt that the democrats had tied his country's hands in the war on terror and they had ruined every institution in america with the aid of media outlets."
until authorities found the hardly-ever-right wing reading material, we just assumed the guy hated musicals.

inside the house, officers found "liberalism is a mental health disorder" by radio talk show host michael savage, "let freedom ring" by talk show host sean hannity, and "the o'reilly factor," by television talk show host bill o'reilly…

adkisson, 58, of powell wrote a four-page letter in which he stated his "hatred of the liberal movement," owen said. "liberals in general, as well as gays."
again, another reason to assume he hated musicals.

apparently, however, his ex-wife, who took a restraining order out on adkisson years ago, was a member of the church he targeted for his rampage, so his berzerking may have had a more personal reason than first suspected. uuworld:

the knoxville news standard reported monday that adkisson's ex-wife, liza anderson, had been a member of the church.

witnesses reported hearing three shots fired before adkisson was tackled by church members while trying to reload his 12-gauge, semiautomatic shotgun. mckendry, the first to be shot, may have been trying to stop the man, members said. police arrived within minutes.
let's see the nra use this as a reason to complain about anti-gun nuts...the church-goers stopped the guy and wrestled him to the ground without weapons.

but his reading list can't be ignored.

(tip o' the kangaroo tail to memeorandum for the link!)
posted by skippy at 6:54 PM | 6 comments

we're on fire....yet again

california wildfire
Originally uploaded by y_davechen

near yosemite.
an out-of-control wildfire near one of the entrances to yosemite national park charred more than 18,000 acres, destroyed eight houses and has put about 2,000 homes at risk, fire officials said on sunday. - reuters

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 5:45 PM | 1 comments

hunger in america

welcome to the newest 3rd world country that can't feed it's own people...the good ol' u.s. of a.
food pantry operators throughout the los angeles region report that demand for free groceries has surged to the highest level in recent memory this summer as the sagging economy has hit not only the poor, but also middle- and upper-class families."this is probably the most people we've ever seen use emergency food assistance," said darren hoffman, communications director for the 35-year-old los angeles regional food bank.

"we're seeing people who were making $70,000 a year coming into a food bank for the first time. . . . they've used their retirement to pay their mortgage, and gone through their savings." - latte times

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 5:37 PM | 1 comments

no credibility gap here

harry shearer has a new album, songs of the bushmen (a musical impeachment), available at itunes.

the playlist includes various song styles, one for each of the people in awol's cabinet that deserves shearer's sharp wit pointed at them. our favorite was the faux-bluegrass ditty, the turdblossom special, dedicated to karl rove.
posted by skippy at 12:55 PM | 1 comments

this might get him out of the traffic ticket

chi sun-times reports that robert novak has been diagnosed w/a brain tumor:

chicago sun-times columnist robert novak said today he has been diagnosed with a brain tumor but says that, “god willing,” he plans to be back at work soon.

novak said he was diagnosed sunday with a tumor and will soon begin treatment at brigham and women’s hospital in boston…

the diagnosis was sudden. novak became ill sunday during a family outing near cape cod, mass. a family member called 911, and he was brought by ambulance to brigham and women's hospital, where the diagnosis was made.

it’s too early to know whether the tumor is malignant or benign, his assistant said. (via)
we are not being snarky at all when we say this could help explain his erratic behavior last week when he was involved in a hit-and-run accident in dc.

a statement released by novak says he will suspend his journalistic duties for now, but hopefully for not too long.

we at skippy international sincerely wish mr. novak a speedy recovery, and hope for the best in his medical trevails.
posted by skippy at 10:52 AM | 5 comments

in iraq, reality bites mclame in the ass again

mcsame has started a new line of attack ads against obama, proclaiming the latter to be playing politics with the iraq war. washpost:

obama's call for withdrawing u.s. troops from iraq, mccain said, "was political" and was made "in order to help him get the nomination of his party." in a different interview, mccain said that "senator obama just views this war as another political issue with which he can change positions."
mclame has driven home the idea that obama was wrong on the surge this last week; the campaign is implying that everyone besides obama, admits that the surge was a resounding success.

except, maybe, for reality. nytimes (login required, try "skippy" and "skippy"):

female bombers struck kurdish political protesters in kirkuk and shiite pilgrims in baghdad on monday morning, leaving at least 48 people dead and 249 wounded in one of the bloodiest sequences of attacks in iraq this year.

in the northern city of kirkuk, at least 24 people were killed and 187 wounded, after a female suicide bomber blew herself up amid thousands of kurdish demonstrators who had gathered near the provincial headquarters building, said brig. gen. burhan tayyib taha of the iraqi police in kirkuk. the bombing immediately set the city on edge. many kurds believed the city’s ethnic turkmen were behind the blast and retaliated by attacking the headquarters of turkmen political parties.

in the attacks in baghdad, three women used suicide vests and a bomb in a bag to make strikes just minutes apart, killing 24 people, all apparently shiite pilgrims marching in a festival, according to an official at the interior ministry. the dead included at least four children, one of them an infant, and there were at least 62 other people wounded, according to police officials and witnesses.
worse for mclame, his position that obama would rather win a presidential campaign than win a war is creating some blowback. john mashak in usnews&worldreport:

in every presidential campaign, candidates of both parties will say something over the line. sen. john mccain has already hit a low mark.

the senior senator from arizona said his democratic rival would "rather lose a war in order to win a political campaign." what's next, an open charge of treason?...

in fact, the iraqi leaders and even president bush have agreed on a goal of a heavy u.s. drawdown, even though the white house prefers to call it a "general time horizon" rather than a timetable. talk about a fuzzy description.

mccain still hasn't told us what his oft-called-for victory would look like. even his friend republican sen. chuck hagel of nebraska says mccain is treading on thin ground with his personal attack on obama's motives.
and obama is still ahead, today by the widest margin ever (49%-40%), in the daily gallup poll.

don't you just hate when reality won't cooperate?

(some links via memeorandum, thanks!)
posted by skippy at 10:23 AM | 0 comments

"hello, god? it's me, barack"

the note left by barack "to the future" obama in the wailing wall on his recent trip to the mideast was stolen and printed in the press. cnn:

the u.s. presidential candidate visited the holy site early thursday and placed a note in the cracks of the wall -- a custom of visitors.

the note was subsequently removed from the wall, according to the israeli newspaper, ma'ariv, which printed what it said were the contents of the prayer...

"this sacrilegious action deserves sharp condemnation and represents a desecration of the holy site," said rabbi shmuel rabinowitz, who supervises the western wall, in a statement.

he said notes are supposed to be removed twice a year, on the eve of jewish new year and passover, and placed in a repository under supervision "to keep them hidden from human eyes."
here's the asspress report:

the nypost has published the note as well. and, defying religious tradition, we here at skippy international will also disclose the contents of the note:

dear god

pleez let john mccain's dependz fall down at the debatez.

posted by skippy at 10:14 AM | 5 comments

Sunday, July 27, 2008

skippy's sunday nite music club

joy division - transmission

joy division was a brilliant post-punk band whose lead singer, ian curtis, committed suicide when the band was on the brink of international stardom. wikipedia tells us:

joy division rapidly evolved from their initial punk rock influences, to develop a sound and style that pioneered the post-punk movement of the late 1970s. according to music critic jon savage, the band "were not punk but were directly inspired by its energy."[2] their self-released 1978 debut ep, an ideal for living, caught the attention of the manchester television personality tony wilson. joy division's debut album, unknown pleasures, was released in 1979 on wilson's independent record label factory records, and drew critical acclaim from the british press. despite the band's growing success, vocalist ian curtis was beset with depression and personal difficulties, including a dissolving marriage and his diagnosis with epilepsy. curtis found it increasingly difficult to perform at live concerts, and often had seizures during performances.

in may 1980, on the eve of the band's first american tour, curtis, overwhelmed with depression, committed suicide. joy division's posthumously released second album, closer (1980), and the single "love will tear us apart" became the band's highest charting releases. after the death of curtis, the remaining members reformed as new order, achieving critical and commercial success.
a great glimpse into this bit of music history can be found in the film control, which was based on the book (and produced) by curtis's wife debbie.
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 2 comments

knock knock - who's there? - cicero - cicero who? - cicero mero!

the skippy's have just returned from seeing the dark knight, and skippy assures us that the best, if not only way to see it is in imax.

it's a good flick, maybe not as great as the hype would have it, but heath ledger's performance certainly is brilliant.

the script could have used another pass with the scissors (it clocks in over two hours long), and some of the dialogue was mumbled and hard to understand, but the effects (especially harvey dent's two-face appearace) were great.

someone dies, and we won't give it away, except to say it was a surprise. and we enjoyed seeing exactly how harvey dent became two-face this time around, because the old batman movies had billy dee williams inexplicably become tommy lee jones.

posted by skippy at 7:27 PM | 1 comments

who's going to slap our faces with his cock now?

via anthony cartouche@roger ailes, the sad news: jeff goldstein has left protein wisdom.

let the flame wars begin.
posted by skippy at 2:20 PM | 15 comments

that's not what we meant by "the surge is working"

jim washburn at lacitybeat gives us a bit of history behind the 13 soldiers burned to death by faulty wiring provided by haliburton shell kellogg brown & root:

slow down. this highly decorated staff sergeant, ryan maseth, wasn’t killed by terrorists, but by a wrongly wired water pump, it was learned – after the army had obscured the reason for months. he is one of at least 13 u.s. servicemen who have so far been electrocuted in iraq, along with scores who have been injured in electrical mishaps, while, the new york times reported july 18, many soldiers report receiving daily shocks in their barracks and, in one recent six-month period alone, there were over 283 electrical fires that damaged or destroyed u.s. military facilities in iraq. just last month, 10 buildings at a marine base in falluja were destroyed in an electrical fire.

jesus christ, has reddi kilowatt changed his name to sunni kilowatt or something? why is it that even electricity seems to be at war with us now? of the 4,125 u.s. servicemen killed in iraq at this writing, one out of every 317 was killed in an electrical mishap.

so let’s get to the kellogg, brown & root of the problem: kbr – the halliburton offshoot that was given highly lucrative no-bid contracts to build facilities for our forces in iraq – evidently used such poor materials and untrained labor, with little or no oversight, that there are systemic electrical problems throughout the theater of war. according to a report by pentagon official ingrid harrison, kbr was aware of the hazards yet “chose to ignore the known unsafe conditions.”

a bit of history: when dick cheney was secretary of defense under george h.w. bush, he had the pentagon pay millions of dollars to halliburton to produce a study showing how, gee, halliburton could more effectively perform the infrastructure work – construction, food service, etc. – previously done in-house by the military. returning to private life, cheney, who had no business experience, was made ceo and chairman of halliburton, and used his pentagon contacts to weave halliburton into military operations.

the idea was that our troops would be better and more economically served by privatization. from electrocuted green berets to troops sickened by sewage water served as potable, from the shameful privatized conditions at walter reed hospital to billions in over-billing, it’s been working out great, hasn’t it?

by the epa’s new estimate, those 13 electrocuted servicemen are worth $93.8 million. kbr’s most recent contract to service our forces in iraq is for $150 billion. guess who wins that cost-benefit analysis?
funny how this sort of thing never gets discussed with all the "surge is working" debates in the media.
posted by skippy at 1:52 PM | 4 comments

the best way to show someone hating the troops is to show them loving the troops

mclame is airing two ads explaining how barack "to the future" obama hates the troops. ben smith at politico points out:

the mccain camp's best chance all along, polls have suggested, has been lingering doubts about obama's character, which range from unfamiliarity to a sense among some voters that he's in some way foreign to them. (that a sizable minority will utterly despise each candidate is a pretty basic feature of american partisan politics; the question is how wide this goes.) today, mccain is testing the depth and flammability of those doubts. it's a serious, frontal attack, and if the two candidates' ads on this air in the same large volume as earlier spots -—mike allen says this one's starting in colorado and pennsylvania — poll numbers emerging about a week from now will be interesting to watch.

also: jonathan martin catches an odd detail:

mccain's new ad accusing obama of refusing to meet troops includes a clip of obama playing basketball with ... troops.
we assume next mcsame will attack obama for wanting a timetable for withdrawl in iraq by agreeing to a timetable for withdrawl in iraq. oh, wait a minute...

(links via)
posted by skippy at 10:36 AM | 1 comments

Saturday, July 26, 2008

skippy's saturday nite music club

dave clark 5 - glad all over

from shindig!
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 4 comments

if we weren't so secure, we might take it personally

we have no idea how we became a result on this internet search (nor do we want to).
posted by skippy at 9:27 PM | 0 comments

holy incompetence, batman!

we kid you not. andrew klavan (whom one commentor elsewhere wondered aloud if he was cliff klavan's idiot brother) writes in the wsj that awol is batman:

there seems to me no question that the batman film "the dark knight," currently breaking every box office record in history, is at some level a paean of praise to the fortitude and moral courage that has been shown by george w. bush in this time of terror and war. like w, batman is vilified and despised for confronting terrorists in the only terms they understand. like w, batman sometimes has to push the boundaries of civil rights to deal with an emergency, certain that he will re-establish those boundaries when the emergency is past.
at least the conservatives waited this time to see if the movie was going to be a blockbuster before co-opting it for their own agenda (they learned from cinderella man: wait to see if anyone actually goes to see the picture before lauding it as your own philosophy incarnate).

many, many other, better (at least, higher traffic) blogs than ours have already deconstructed the lunacy of this argument.

so we will content ourselves to point out two things: one, if awol is batman, using terror to fight terror, that makes osama bin laden the joker, and he's the one getting all the good press from the movie. there's even talk of a post-humous oscar nod for heath ledger; ergo, if bin laden is the joker, then we like him, we really like him!

and, secondly, if awol is batman, does that mean jeff gannon is robin?

posted by skippy at 7:05 PM | 4 comments

blogher? we don't even know her!

physioprof, writing over at feministe, examines today's nytimes article on the blogher convention in san francisco, and finds it lacking.

physioprof comes out swinging:

first of all, does it surpries you one fucking bit that this article–about the business activites of women bloggers–is in the fashion/style section of the times? cause you know, anything women do is all about fashion and style, it’s not real manly-man shit like business and sports and technology. the times article about how “blogging can kill you!!11!!!!1!eleventy!1!1!!!!” was in the technology section of the paper. you know why? cause the article is about how manly-man cheeto-huffing bloggers could die!!!! from manly-man stress-induced disorders like heart attacks!!1q!!1!! cute little laydeez chit-chatting about blogging and other little cute shit they do on the internet? fashion/style.
we read the article and have to agree that, ironically enough, it pretty well condescends to women bloggers, exactly the opposite result that the blogher convention was striving for:

last weekend, about a thousand bloggers, almost all without the y chromosome, attended the annual blogher conference, which began in 2005 to help female bloggers gain exposure. it has since evolved into a corporate-sponsored oprah-inflected version of a ’60s consciousness-raising group.
backhand-compliment much?

granted, many of wymyn's blogs are about momhood, sex lives and boyfriends, and a pet pic or two here and there. and that's the sort of angle the nytimes piece focused on:

there were tears at many emotional panels, and also much hooting and applause, whether in response to news that michelle obama had just written her first blog post on the blogher web site or that michelin would be giving away a set of tires.

there were also more than 40 brands, including general motors and k-y jelly, sponsoring the blogher event in hopes of connecting with the scene’s microcelebrities.

“i’m kind of famous,” said kristen dimont, whose design and parenting blog is called mod mom, during a break between panels on the first morning.

as if on cue, she was stopped by a woman toting a swag bag, who revealed herself as a blogger for mums the wurd, a product blog for parents. “you’re mod mom,” the admirer said. “i’ve been following you forever.”
granted, we don't tend to peruse those sorts of blogs. but we know for a fact there are many fine women writing about other subjects, ie, politics, personal freedoms, social issues and (dare we say it?) feminism.

aside from our old blog flame megan "don't call me jane galt" mcardle (she never blogrolled us, and she always blamed her co-blogger, the hussy!) we didn't see any name of any of the wymyn we read on a regular basis.

we assume jane hamsher and christy hardin smith and marcie wheeler were at the not-necessarily-the-yearly-kos convention in austin, which happened to run at the exact same time (a coincidence not lost on the blogher creators), so we can forgive the nytimes for not mentioning them. ditto for digby (yes! we coined that phrase, too!).

but not mentioning anybody from feministe? or jessica and her buds at feministing? or amanda, melissa, maryscott, echidne, roxie, or even avedon or marybeth?

the times article even alluded to dkos as a male-dominated blog. while that's true, there are many women front pagers there as well.

perhaps because most of the political/social female bloggers were in austin or just not in sf at the time, the times decided to concentrate on the wymyn that were present.

but to write about female bloggers and not mention those who are the top political writers in blogtopia and yes, we coined that phrase, seems deliberately dismissive.

(thx to memeorandum for the original links!)

addendum: whoa! how could we forget the beautiful and erudite pam, she of the house blend? who writes not only about feminist issues, but minority issues as well?

double addendum: even worse, amanda tells us she was interviewed for the article, and wasn't included in the published piece! which makes our point even pointier!

triple addendum: granted, the piece mentioned arianna. but until she links to us, we aren't going to.

quadruple addendum: how could we forget our benefactor, jeralyn merritt of talkleft? we are ashamed. she was one of the very first in blogtopia and yes, we coined that phrase, to link to, encourage and advertise our work, and we owe her much, if not all, of our blogging success. and, she's been an astute analytical blogging mind for over 6 years, and there's no excuse that the nytimes overlooked her talent.

quintuple addendum: our commentors remind us also of pam and lindsay and susie. and we imagine more will be forthcoming.
posted by skippy at 5:23 PM | 5 comments

bloody good show

we agree w/brandy, dexter rocks!
posted by skippy at 10:15 AM | 0 comments

the scary black man is even scarier than we thought

an email we received:


dear friend,

two weeks ago hugh hewitt sent you an email regarding his letter to a young obama supporter. thousands of you responded and requested this important pamphlet that puts the facts into the hands of people that are being fooled by all the obama hype.
gee, we didn't open that one. and we usually read all the stuff hugh sends us.

many of you have said that one copy simply isn't enough, more are needed to give out to friends and family. because of this overwhelming response we are now making three copies of letter to a young obama supporter available to you with your subscription to townhall magazine.
what a great idea! because we wouldn't want to go to the trouble of copying the pamphlet w/a copy machine when we could easily shell out some $$$ for a subscription to hardly-ever-right-wing paranoid drivel!

order townhall magazine now and get three copies of letter to a young obama supporter now! a $77 value for only $34.95!

your first issue of townhall magazine will include an in-depth report revealing the secrets of barack obama's chicago political machine. hugh's letter outlines the risks associated with putting barack obama in charge of the war on terror and the american economy. townhall magazine exposes obama's calculations and associations with corruption that have not been reported in the main-stream media.
that's great, because we haven't seen anything about obama's corruption in the news!

one of the greatest threats of an obama presidency is his opportunity to appoint judges.
and that he'll sleep with your sister.

in this special edition, you will learn just what judicial activism is and how leaders like justice scalia are holding the line against liberal judges.
like clarence thomas.

senator fred thompson's exclusive "closing argument" breaks down the consequences of activist judges and the dangers of judges that legislate from the bench.
and senator fred thompson knows all about the law, because he used to be the d.a. for new york, and he fired all the lesbians!

you will learn what left-wing radicals are planning to disrupt the democratic convention and hear from newt gingrich on the need to drill for oil here at home.
yes, because left-wingers hate the democrats! and newt gingrich loves oil!

subscribe today and we'll also send you three copies of letter to a young obama supporter now! a $77 value for only $34.95!
why, it's a deal at twice the price! where do we sign?
posted by skippy at 9:38 AM | 6 comments

anyone who speaks to multitudes just can't be trusted

ben stein, best known as ferris bueller's annoying teacher, has been making the rounds on screeching heads cable shows decrying the fact that barack "to the future" obama is going to hold his acceptance speech at invesco stadium in denver. giving a rousing speech to adoring fans, he must be like adolf hitler. via media matters:

stein might be right. anybody who has the power to attract 75,000 to listen to a speech in a stadium has to be evil.

posted by skippy at 4:35 AM | 6 comments

mea culpa

one of the interns at skippy international has pointed out an egregious error on the part of our blogroll department, which we intend to correct immediately.

we are not sure how this happened, but we have failed to list both martini republic revolution and world-o-crap on our roll, even tho both of those blogs have us on theirs.

trust us, our faces are red. both martini republic and world-o-crap have has not only been bringing superb blogging for many years to blogtopia and yes, we coined that phrase, and both are also purveyors of fine snark.

we highly encourage our dear readers to visit both blogs on a regular basis.

[mea culpa on the mea culpa: martini revolution, the blog we added to our roll, is a splinter blog from the now-defunct martini republic, which was what we were thinking of when we wrote this post last night. apparently we had one too mini martoonis. thanks to carl for pointing out our error.]
posted by skippy at 3:02 AM | 4 comments

Friday, July 25, 2008

skippy's friday nite music club

we can't help it, we have to get up and dance when we hear this one...

laura branigan - gloria
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 3 comments

"campaign as i say, not as i campaign"

via balloon juice, the martini revolution points out another mcsame gaffe/lie/confused old mannerism:

mccain was so busy criticizing obama for giving a speech outside the united states (ironically after his own challenge to go to iraq and afghanistan spurred obama’s trip) . . .

“i would rather speak at a rally or a political gathering any place outside of the country after i am president of the united states,” mccain told o’donnell. “but that’s a judgment that sen. obama and the american people will make.”
. . . that he forgot that he himself gave a speech paid for by his campaign “outside of the country” just last month:

however, on june 20, mccain himself gave a speech in canada — to the economic club of canada — in which he applauded nafta’s successes. an implicit message behind that speech was that obama had been critical of the trade accord. also, mccain’s trip to canada was paid for by the campaign.
somebody else mentioned mclame's trip to mexico and columbia earlier this summer, as well.
posted by skippy at 6:46 PM | 5 comments

beautiful meme-er

via scaramoucheblog, this is the best representation of this internet tradition we are aware of:

posted by skippy at 6:04 PM | 3 comments

say hello

to the gun-toting liberal.
posted by skippy at 6:03 PM | 1 comments

kafka drops

the talking dog interviews steve wax, lawyer for adel "project hamad" hamad and brandon mayfield, and others held at gtmo, federal defender for oregon, and author of the book "kafka comes to america"(he got here around seven years ago, by my count).
posted by skippy at 5:47 PM | 0 comments

we have a wiener!

you may have heard that michael savage outdid his rude self by saying austism was a racket and 99 percent of autistic children needed fathers to tell them to stop acting "like a moron."

as you can imagine, many people are not so happy about this. via crooks&liars, we find the blowback just beginning.

cleaveland's whk 1420 am is dropping savage's show. cleveplaindealer:

whk am/1420, the only cleveland-area station carrying savage's radio talk show, is break ing its contract with savage's syndicator, talk radio net work, said mark jaycox, who manages the cleveland stations under the salem com munications corporate um brella. whk is owned by cali fornia-based sa lem communi cations.

"this guy's a knucklehead, and i want to get rid of him," jaycox said…

jaycox decided to yank savage after receiving about two dozen calls and e-mails from parents of autistic children, who said they were hurt by the remarks
“i had one dad almost cry,” jaycox said.
savage has also been dumped from a seven-station syndicate in mississippi. and the disability rights coalition is calling for savage's firing from his syndication network. cbsmarketwatch:

the leader of a national coalition of disability, civil rights and social justice organizations called on talk radio network to fire talk radio host, michael savage for his hateful attacks on children and adults with physical and mental disabilities. jim ward, founder and president of ada watch and the national coalition for disability rights (ncdr), stated:

"ada watch/ncdr calls on talk radio network to fire michael savage. as america prepares to celebrate the 18th anniversary of the americans with disabilities act (ada) on july 26th, people with disabilities, parents, family members, friends and advocates across the nation are outraged over savage's latest attack on people with disabilities. his despicable assault on children with autism -- calling them "frauds" and "brats" -- is rightly being condemned as hateful and bigoted. but it is just the latest of savage's numerous and painful attempts to demean and disenfranchise people with disabilities."

savage has also used his bully-pulpit to declare that:

-- high levels of asthma impacting minority children was because "the children got extra welfare if they were disabled." (july 2008)

-- the "handicapped" workers at the phoenix cafe would "drool" and put dung in diners food. he made up names for the food on the menu, such as "nutburger." (july 2002)

-- members of the disability rights community are the "wheelchair mafia."

-- the americans with disabilities act (ada), the world's first civil rights law for people with disabilities, should be called the "lawyers' improvement act."

-- his political opponents are "degenerate slime bags" with "mental disorders" and have a "virus like leukemia."

-- when he was younger, he "touched the hand of a midget [dwarf]," it really "freaked him out" and, since that episode, he doesn't like public places. (june 2004)

-- the "autism lobby of devastated parents is just a scam to get more money."
if you'd like to help get this jerk off the air, go sign the petition.
posted by skippy at 5:14 PM | 0 comments

obama isn't visiting the troops, each side blames the other

this time the shrill pearl-clutchers were just plain wrong about barack "to the future" obama's decision to not visit troops in germany on his european vacation.

the hardly-ever-right wing cried aloud, oh that obama is snubbing our hard working men and women in uniform, but he's happy to raise cash at a nazi rally!

except, it was the pentagon that nixed obama's visit w/the troops. lynn sweet @ the chisun-times:

a scheduled visit by presumptive democratic nominee sen. barack obama (d-ill.) with u.s. troops friday at a military base in rammstein, germany was cancelled because the pentagon told the campaign it would look too political…

though the rammstein visit had been planned for days, obama senior strategist david axelrod said that that pentagon notified obama military advisor scott gration only yesterday or the day before that he should not come.

the pentagon "viewed this as a campaign event and therefore they said he should not come," axelrod said. obama has been at the base in previous overseas trips. he visited with troops--even played basketball--when he touched down in kuwait during the iraq and afghanistan leg of his swing.
but the plot thickens. the dod sez obama was welcome, just not his campaign staff. nytimes blog:

geoff morrell, the pentagon press secretary, issued a statement emphasizing that the pentagon did not cancel mr. obama’s visit.

“senator obama, in his official capacity, is always welcome to visit landstuhl or any other military hospital. but it is not permitted to bring with him campaign staff. his team was notified of that, and they made a decision not to visit the hospital. but we were ready and willing to host him there. in fact, we had made arrangements for his campaign plane to land at ramstein, and to take care of the campaign staff and press in a passenger terminal there, while the senator and senate staff, if he liked, went on to visit wounded warriors. they made a decision based on their own calculations not to visit. senator obama, like any other member of the senate, is always welcome to visit our wounded warriors or our military hospitals around the world. but they do so in their official capacity, and not as a candidate. he can come in and bring senate staffers as well, if he likes, but campaign staffers and press are not permitted to accompany him. that would be a violation of dod directives.”
so perhaps obama wanted a photo-op, and decided against it when none was available. which would be too bad for him, if true.

(tip o' the kangaroo tail to memeorandum for the links!)

addendum: greg sergent at tpm central confirms that it was the pentagon who nixed the trip, not obama's campaign:

"we have longstanding department of defense policy in regards to political campaigns and elections," pentagon spokesperson elizabeth hibner told me. "we informed the obama staff that he was more than welcome to visit as senator obama, with senate staff. however, he could not conduct the visit with campaign staff."

after being told this, the obama campaign announced yesterday that it had decided it was "inappropriate" to make the visit as part of a campaign trip.

it's unclear how obama could have made the visit at all, given the pentagon's directives. no senate staff was on the trip, and the obama camp says they received the pentagon's directives on wednesday, after they were already abroad.
posted by skippy at 9:59 AM | 6 comments

Thursday, July 24, 2008

skippy's thursday nite music club

robert johnson - me and the devil blues

robert johnson is widely considered to be the father of the blues, and the grandaddy of rock n' roll...most major rockers cite him as a big influence on their work, everyone from muddy waters and bob dylan and jimi hendrix, eric clapton and the stones to jeff beck, robert palmer and jack white.
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 5 comments

ich bin ein obama

michael j.w. stickings at the reaction has, well, a reaction to obama's berlin speech, and he makes a salient point:

upon initial reflection, i agree with michael crowley: the speech was "unsurprising, but elegantly wrought and delivered, and the stagecraft was perfect." my only major concern is that obama could come across as far too much of an internationalist for the american electorate, much of which is nationalist, isolationist, and, in terms of america's place in the world, arrogant and self-aggrandizing. indeed, some critics will likely charge obama with caring more about world opinion than about main street america. as noam scheiber puts it, "the combination of the visual and some of the rhetoric... was a little too post-nationalist for the typical american swing-voter. i'm not sure you win the presidency without being seen as an unambiguous nationalist."
well, no matter what obama does, it'll be wrong...because he's a democrat.

altho we had to laff as we channel-surfed past faux news yesterday. chris wallace and a panel of concern trolls were discussing"is the media biased towards obama?" complete w/a chyron that boldly proclaimed the same question.

to us, faux worrying about media bias is rather like the pot convening a panel of experts to discuss what color the kettle is.
posted by skippy at 10:05 PM | 1 comments

john chiang...california treasurer

ballsy and spineally fortified.

while the governor is poised to order the cuts on monday, state controller john chiang, who is responsible for disbursing state workers' paychecks, said thursday that he will refuse to go along with the governor, setting up a political standoff and a possible legal fight.

"the authority to issue people's paychecks is mine. i have both constitutional and statutory authority," said chiang, a democrat. "frankly, (the governor) is just trying to make me do something that's improper and illegal."- sfgate

contact mr. chiang. drop him a little "thanks."

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 9:54 PM | 1 comments

let's hope

Hauling the criminal Rove in
Originally uploaded by santa barbarian

this foible will finally land criminal rove in the slammer.

karl rove has threatened a gop high-tech guru and his wife, if he does not "'take the fall' for election fraud in ohio," according to a letter sent this morning to attorney general michael mukasey, by ohio election attorney cliff arnebeck. - the brad blog

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 9:45 PM | 0 comments

poll numbers are moving mclame's way...and, since america elects its president by the popular vote, then - oh, wait a minute...

much has been made of late about the tip in polls towards mcsame's favor. washpost:

mccain and obama are in a statistical dead heat in colorado, michigan and minnesota while the illinois senator has a more comfortable double-digit edge in wisconsin, according to polling conducted by quinnipiac university for washingtonpost.com and the wall street journal during the past week. only in colorado, however, does mccain hold a greater percentage of the vote share than obama.
the quinnipac poll has mclame up 2 points to 46%, while obama is down 5 points to 44%. and in minnesota, mcsame is up 7 and obama down 8.

oddly enough, the article doesn't deign to mention the margin of error in this poll, which we are betting is more than the measly 2 points separating the two candidates.

[ed. note: reader sean found the margin of error and posted them in our comments section. it was moer than the 2 points, but only fractionally.]

this would be of great concern if we elected the president by popular vote. but as al gore can tell you, that don't mean a thing if it ain't go that swing. john zogby, who maintains that his electoral map was remarkably accurate in the 2006 elections, still puts obama far, far, far ahead:

four states have changed color on the zogby electoral college map at http://www.zogby.com/, as presidential candidates john mccain and barack obama battle for the upper hand. obama maintains his substantial lead over mccain in the electoral college race, the latest map shows, as he remains at 273 votes, but mccain loses 14 votes.

the latest calculations represented by the map are the result of analysis by pollster john zogby, based on zogby and industry polling, as well as other factors.

pollster john zogby: "for the time being, obama maintains the edge and has the strength of a majority of electoral votes. his triumphant foreign trip allows him to continue to define this race. but too many of these states are close and a sizable number are undecided or choosing a third party candidate. so there is a lot of fluidity."
zogby's final electoral college tally is obama - 273; mclame - 146; toss up - 119.

and remember, a candidate needs 270 votes to become president.

of course, a zogby poll is worth exactly the same as a quinnipac poll: absolutely nothin'. it's the poll on the first tuesday in november that counts.
posted by skippy at 7:30 PM | 6 comments

value us! value us!

apparently the governator pissed off state workers with this little "plan" of devaluing workers for the state.....and they took to the steps of the capitol building.
"how many of you," she asked, "can pay your mortgage 'eventually?'" "how many of you can go to the grocery store and say 'hey, catch you later?'"

another union official, larry perkins, suggested that if the governor's plan is enacted, workers should work for 20 minutes, then take a 40-minute break to reflect their reduced compensation. - sacbee

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 5:18 PM | 0 comments

obama goes to germany

and speaks to crowd of 200,000.....mccain goes to german town....and has a little press gaggle outside schmidts fudge haus.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 1:31 PM | 3 comments

right on the button

moveon.org is offering a free obama button to anyone that wants one.

or you can get three buttons for a donation of $2! (or 45 for $20!)
posted by skippy at 9:13 AM | 2 comments

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

skippy's wednesday nite music club

perfume - electro world
posted by skippy at 11:59 PM | 4 comments

drinking for obama

skippy has just returned from an evening of platform planking and heavy imbibing at this month's socal drinking liberally meeting.

but, for a change, there was an actual point to the gathering...the group was joined by venice for obama, and had the mission statement, along with getting drunk, of helping to come up w/ideas for the national democratic platform.

of course, the 'getting drunk' part was probably not only easier but more productive in reality, but at least the energy and excitment produced by the idea of helping obama's campaign was palpable and infectious.

skippy saw several old blogging friends, including hekebolos, thereisnospoon, shayera and the ever-increasingly prolific d-day. and the lovely mary jack who, while still refusing to make a blog of her own, is an ethusiastic local democratic leader and provacateur.

tho a good time was had by all, skippy was reminded once again that if anyone can snatch defeat out of the jaws of victory, it's the democrats. faced with the task of coming up w/ideas for a global warming plank for the democratic platform, the group of liberal drinkers skippy found himself in took what seemed like hours, debating form and vocabularly, before even putting pen to paper (or, more appropriately for tonite's gathering, marker to oversiezed art tablet).

at one point, worried about reaching blue collar slash common american voters, one participant opined "farmers don't know much about the environment." (believe us, kids, skippy comes from a long line of american prairie dwellers, and if there's one thing farmers know about, it's the environment.)

but a good time was had by all, and the enthusiasm that obama generates is fun, once everyone gets over their own candidate having lost.
posted by skippy at 10:21 PM | 0 comments

revolt rumbles in tomato town?

look for some very unhappy state employees (and their friends and family) if the governator goes through with this plan.

arnold slashing pay for 200k state workers to federal minimum wage
(via calitics....)

btw...federal minimum wage $6.55/hr.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 5:14 PM | 2 comments

ok...morning cup o'joe

busted (motivator style)
Originally uploaded by Ceiling_Cat
you busted some of us bloggers. not.

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posted by SantaBarbarian at 4:32 PM | 3 comments

when bloggers attack

from the creative minds of thers, water tiger and dan mcenroe, comes:

mccain's latest ad
posted by skippy at 1:19 PM | 3 comments

note to cnn....

Senator Chuck Hagel
Originally uploaded by Arab American Institute
when you show senator hagel up at the podium speak, perhaps you can allow the viewers to hear what he is saying instead of lively chipmunk chatter about what the "anchors" think obama is going to say. i didn't want to hear what the chipmunks said...i wanted to hear what hagel said. i could see him on the screen...i wanted to hear him too.

it really made the chattering class hosts look more foolish than usual.

and, although i disagree with him on most issues, i do give hagel credit for standing up to awol (showing more spinal fortitude than most of the democrats) and going on this bipartisan trip.
posted by SantaBarbarian at 11:03 AM | 1 comments

bob novak, [bodily orifice], cited after hit-and-run

the politico is reporting that bob "valerie plame is a partisan" novak was involved in a hit-and-run with his vehicle in dc today, and was cited by police:

syndicated columnist robert d. novak was cited by police after he hit a pedestrian with his black corvette in downtown washington, d.c., wednesday morning.

a politico reporter saw novak in the front of a police car with a citation in his hand; a wjla-tv crew and reporter saw novak as well. the pedestrian, a male in his 60s, was hospitalized at george washington university hospital with minor injuries according to the metro fire department. novak was later released by police and drove away from the scene.
politico goes on to describe novak driving away from the scene, only to be chased down and detained by a guy on a bicycle:

the bicyclist was david bono, a partner at harkins cunningham, who was on his usual bike commute to work at 1700 k st. nw when he saw the accident happen…

bono said the pedestrian, who was crossing the street on a "walk" signal and was in the crosswalk, rolled off the windshield and then novak made a right into the service lane of k street. “the car is speeding away. what’s going through my mind is, you just can’t hit a pedestrian and drive away,” bono said.

he chased novak half a block down k st., finally caught up with him and then put his bike in front of the car to block him and called 911. traffic immediately backed up, horns blared, and commuters finally went into reverse to allow novak to pull over.

bono said that throughout, novak "keeps trying to get away. he keeps trying to go.” he said he vaguely recognized the longtime political reporter and columnist as a washington celebrity but could not precisely place him.
novak is known to not be pre-disposed to kindness to pedestrians...

in 2001, he cursed at a pedestrian on the corner of pennsylvania avenue and 13th streets northwest for allegedly jaywalking.

“’learn to read the signs, [bodily orifice]!’ novak snapped before speeding away,” according to an item in the washington post’s reliable source column.
this does not bode well for mr. novak. first the mclame campaign uses him shamelessly, then he runs over an old guy.

maybe he thought the guy was mclame.

addendum: via thinkprogress, here's the local abc (wjla) report:

the money quote from reporter suzanne kennedy:

i just spoke with the bicyclist about three minutes ago. he tells me that the pedestrian was actually splayed across the front of novak’s convertible, and that there would be absolutely no way novak would have not known that he had hit someone.

double addendum: jon swift tells us that the man novak hit is an obama supporter. that's one way for the gop to win...

[ed. note: jon swift updates his post to reflect the fact that he got his facts wrong; the obama supporter was the bicycling witness, not the pedestrian victim. we really should start reading this crap before citing it...]
posted by skippy at 9:40 AM | 7 comments

you know things are going bad for mclame when his base (the media) turns on him...

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

poor john mcsame...even anonymous joe klein of primary colors time's blog swampland is picking on him...by pointing out the obvious:

john mccain said this today in rochester, new hampshire:

this is a clear choice that the american people have. i had the courage and the judgment to say i would rather lose a political campaign than lose a war. it seems to me that obama would rather lose a war in order to win a political campaign.
this is the ninth presidential campaign i've covered. i can't remember a more scurrilous statement by a major party candidate. it smacks of desperation. it renews questions about whether mccain has the right temperament for the presidency. how sad.
joe goes on to point out that of course, there have been worse things said in other campaigns, but usually said by surrogats or 527's. this is the first time in joe's memory that one candidate has essentially accused the other of actual treason.

we point this out not because it's news that mclame is desparate and willing to shoot off his mouth without thinking first...that's not news to anyone who's been paying attention.

but rather we find it interesting that a pillar of the mmm (multi-millionaire media) finds it newsworthy. the trend seems to be that pundits are actually paying attention to the crap coming out of mclame these days, and not dismissing it as "authentic maverickism."

this might be a good thing.

addendum: elrod at the moderate voice points out that this sort of reckless accusation-tossing will hurt mclame amongst independents, the folks he needs the most to win:

who will be most put off by this? independents. one thing i’ve learned from participating on this blog with joe gandelman is that independents do not like all the mud-slinging, fear mongering, and accusations of treason. in 2004 bush could get away with that because he ran a base election and not a play for the middle. mccain, on the other hand, needs to do well among independents in order to win. these tactics will only turn independents off and mccain looks, well, unpresidential.

double addendum: well, apparently not all of the media has noticed. huffpo reports that cbs deliberately edited out from their newscast an historically-incorrect answer from mclame to a question from morning personality katie couric, and instead inserted an answer to a totally different question!

from the transcript:

katie couric: senator mccain, senator obama says, while the increased number of us troops contributed to increased security in iraq, he also credits the sunni awakening and the shiite government going after militias. and says that there might have been improved security even without the surge. what's your response to that?

mccain: i don't know how you respond to something that is as-- such a false depiction of what actually happened. colonel macfarland was contacted by one of the major sunni sheiks. because of the surge we were able to go out and protect that sheik and others. and it began the anbar awakening. i mean, that's just a matter of history.
in fact, as spencer ackerman and ilan goldenberg have reported, the record firmly establishes the opposite: instead of being caused by the surge, the key signs of the anbar awakening occurred not only before that strategy was implemented, but before it was ever conceived.

yet mccain's error was not seen by any cbs evening news viewers. as msnbc's keith olbermann noted (video below), "cbs curiously, to say the least, left it on the edit room floor. it aired katie couric's question, but in response, it aired part of mccain's answer to the other question instead." (ironically, this edit came on the same day that mccain's campaign released a video mocking the media's "love affair" with obama.)

the fact remains, however, that the military official cited by mccain, then-colonel sean macfarland, described the anbar awakening in september 2006 -- four months before the "surge" was even announced -- noting that tribal leaders were "stepping forward and cooperating with the iraqi security forces against al qaeda." moreover, a military review written by macfarland notes that his unit actually left anbar before most of the surge troops arrived; his success in the region came between june 2006 and february 2007.
huffpo has an embed of olbermann's report on this, you may want to check it out.

(tip o' the kangaroo tail to memorandum) for all the links!)
posted by skippy at 8:22 AM | 4 comments