Palin Watch

In an interview this past Sunday with Fox News’ Chris Wallace, John McCain said the following. Wallace had asked him whether Governor Palin had turned out to be a drag on the ticket. (The phrase “cold political calculation” cam from Wallace, but I didn’t notice McCain being reticent to use it.)

As a cold political calculation, I could not be more pleased. She has excited and energized our base. She is a direct counterpoint to the liberal feminist agenda for America.

She has a wonderful family. She’s a reformer. She’s a conservative. She’s the best thing that could have happened to my campaign and to America. And when I see the enthusiasm and I see the passion that she has aroused, I am so happy.

And the fact is Americans are also beginning to learn that she ran a state. She’s an executive that has 24,000 employees. She took on a governor of her own state, of her own party.

She knows energy better than certainly most people in Washington. She’s had executive experience. She has knowledge and background, and she also has a compassion and understanding of special needs families. So I couldn’t be happier.

It must be killing McCain to have to say things like that.

Palin’s favorable ratings have been plummeting steadily after her initial introduction at the big convention. It is now obvious to everyone with a pulse that she is a complete lightweight with nothing to say on any of the great issues of our time. Polls are now showing that people view the selection of Palin as reflecting very badly on McCain’s judgment. We know that McCain wanted someone like Lieberman or Ridge, but instead kowtowed to his base by picking Palin.

Now he’s stuck making a fool of himself denying the obvious on nationwide television.

Palin, for her part, continues to make a fool of herself. Just savor her remarks about the role of the Vice President:

Q: Brandon Garcia wants to know, “What does the Vice President do?”

PALIN: That’s something that Piper would ask me! … [T]hey’re in charge of the U.S. Senate so if they want to they can really get in there with the senators and make a lot of good policy changes that will make life better for Brandon and his family and his classroom.

Mr. Garcia is a third grader whose question had apparently been sent to the network for this interview. I trust you are aware that Palin is mistaken about the role of the VP?

This led to an amusing exchange between Chris Matthews and Pat Buchanan on tonight’s Hardball:

BUCHANAN: She’s talking to second and third graders…

MATTHEWS: She’s talking like a second grader!

Sometimes even Matthews gets it right.

Then we have this amusing story from Politico about the budget for Sarah Palin’s wardrobe:

The Republican National Committee has spent more than $150,000 to clothe and accessorize vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin and her family since her surprise pick by John McCain in late August.

According to financial disclosure records, the accessorizing began in early September and included bills from Saks Fifth Avenue in St. Louis and New York for a combined $49,425.74.

The records also document a couple of big-time shopping trips to Neiman Marcus in Minneapolis, including one $75,062.63 spree in early September.

The RNC also spent $4,716.49 on hair and makeup through September after reporting no such costs in August.

The cash expenditures immediately raised questions among campaign finance experts about their legality under the Federal Election Commission’s long-standing advisory opinions on using campaign cash to purchase items for personal use.

I wouldn’t care so much about this story except that it reminds me of the way the media in 2000 reacted to the trumped up tale of Naomi Wolf telling Al Gore to wear Earth tones, in an attempt to endear himself to female voters. At the time they thought this story, almost certainly false, shined a bright light on Gore’s many psychological failings. I wonder what they think of this one?

On the other hand, perhaps we have enough real examples of Palin’s failings that we do not need to harp on this.


  1. #1 Blake Stacey
    October 22, 2008

    You’ve read Jane Mayer’s piece in The New Yorker, haven’t you? (You’d be a sorry excuse for a latte-sipping, hybrid-driving, freedom-hating liberal elitist intellectual if you didn’t at least skim the more salacious-sounding items in The New Yorker!)

  2. #2 RM
    October 22, 2008

    True trickle down economics-Sarah Palin spends $150,000 on clothes and some fortunate taxpayer gets her second hand clothes when she is through wearing them.

    The clothes, however, worry me far less than her total lack of understanding of matters that are critical to the advancement of mankind.

  3. #3 Ginger Yellow
    October 22, 2008

    “And the fact is Americans are also beginning to learn that she ran a state.”

    That was the very first thing Americans learned about her, beyond her name and gender. What we’re beginning to learn is that you don’t need to know anything about anything to run a state.

  4. #4 Reginald Selkirk
    October 22, 2008

    She’s the best thing that could have happened to my campaign

    That is so sad.

  5. #5 Reginald Selkirk
    October 22, 2008

    When it rains, it pours.

    AP INVESTIGATION: Palin children traveled on state
    ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) – Gov. Sarah Palin charged the state for her children to travel with her, including to events where they were not invited, and later amended expense reports to specify that they were on official business…

  6. #6 Alex, FCD
    October 22, 2008

    I wouldn’t care so much about this story except that it reminds me of the way the media in 2000 reacted to the trumped up tale of Naomi Wolf telling Al Gore to wear Earth tones, in an attempt to endear himself to female voters.

    I had not heard about this before, and I am extremely confused as to why this might be a bad thing, even if it was true.

  7. #7 Kevin
    October 22, 2008

    heh heh .. he said

    “aroused” …. heh…

    remember at one of her first speeches when McDopey spent the whole time staring at her ass and playing with his…. his wedding ring?

  8. #8 Science Avenger
    October 22, 2008

    It’s the idiot, stupid.

  9. #9 Koray
    October 22, 2008

    Why did she spend so much money on clothes from the unpatriotic NY?

  10. #10 Jim Harrison
    October 22, 2008

    There’s a slide show of Palin’s clothes over at Huffington Post. In the interest of objectivity, I’ve got to admit that she may not be remotely qualified as a political candidate for the vice presidency, but she’s a good model and her managers have excellent taste.

  11. #11 Robert O'Brien
    October 22, 2008

    Palin, for her part, continues to make a fool of herself. Just savor her remarks about the role of the Vice President…

    She is strictly correct. From Article I of the Constitution:

    The Vice President of the United States shall be President of the Senate but shall have no Vote, unless they be equally divided.

    The Senate shall chuse their other Officers, and also a President pro tempore, in the Absence of the Vice President, or when he shall exercise the Office of President of the United States.

    Did you doze off during civics, Jason?

  12. #12 JimCH
    October 22, 2008

    Robert O’Brien…
    Palin said something about getting in there with the Senators & making a lot of policy changes; this, in fact, doesn’t happen. Yes, of course, the Vice President may sit as the presiding officer of the Senate, but has no legislative role whatsoever, with the exception of casting tie breaking votes if the Senate is deadlocked.
    I think that it was clear that this is what Jason was referring to.

  13. #13 rimpal
    October 23, 2008

    O’Brien: Did you doze off during civics, Jason?

    Looks like you have a reading comprehension problem Bob. The Veep is not in charge of the Senate, and cannot “get in there ad make policy”.

  14. #14 Robert O'Brien
    October 23, 2008

    Looks like you have a reading comprehension problem Bob. The Veep is not in charge of the Senate, and cannot “get in there ad make policy”.

    The vice president is president of the senate. So when she said the vice president is “in charge” of the senate she was strictly correct. The reading comprehension problem appears to be yours. As for policy, a vice president can mix it up with the senate all he or she wants. Of course, she/he wields no more influence (probably less) than the majority or minority leaders.

  15. #15 Jim Harrison
    October 23, 2008

    Bob, most of us here obviously disagree with you on a huge number of issues; but pissing matches aside, do you really want to defend Palin? It’s not simply that the lady is poorly educated, naive, or superstitious–depending on your worldview, those attributes may be virtues–but that there is getting to be pretty good evidence that she’s just a religious con woman like Aimee Semple McPherson. She’s making awfully good money from her political career; and she certainly got a tremendous wardrobe for her efforts. I know that the campaign is now claiming that they planned to give all that stuff to charity after the election and I give them style points for using the extremely rare past-future-perfect-mendacious tense; but how is what Palin is doing materially different than a TV evangelist’s use of contributions to buy another Cadillac?

  16. #16 Robert O'Brien
    October 23, 2008

    Yes, I want to defend Governor Palin. Although, I think she is too green for a vice-presidential pick. Had McCain asked me, I would have recommended Mike Steele, the former lieutenant governor of Maryland, but that’s water under the bridge.

  17. #17 rimpal
    October 23, 2008


    Repeating Palin’s sound-bites doesn’t make what she said correct. Reading comprehension now it seems is the least of your problems.

  18. #18 Robert O'Brien
    October 23, 2008


    Your lack of native intelligence is not my problem. President means president. That is why there is such a thing as president pro tempore; the job of president of the senate is already taken by the vice president.

  19. #19 GFB
    October 24, 2008

    Mr. O’B.
    The problem with Gov. Palin is that she has her priorities are all messed up. She seems to be concerned with trite issues like the sanctity of life, by not killing her downs syndrome child. Silly stuff like the military, commander in chief of the only permanent national guard that monitors the national security watch of Russia, China, and other unfriendlies, not to mention national security by having a higher security clearance than either democratic candidate. Or even the welfare of her constituents with a 80% approval rating. but as we all know, they are only Alaskans, what do they know? Oops, almost forgot completely useless waste of time and money involved in the legislation of obtaining the largest supply of our own natural resources in history.
    Now if she was smart, she would have been involved in much more important issues like denouncing patriotism by worrying about what the terrorists think about be offended by our flag. How she and her husband could join in on flag burnings. How to vote “present”. What is involved in turning this country to a socialistic society (studying Karl Marx would help). How to sell the U.S. to the U.N.. How to lie about her religious convictions. How to get in bed with the Islamic terrorists that have killed thousands of our citizens. How to penalize the successful people, who already pay the greatest portion of taxes, and give it to the non-working people…to be fair (you know). How to decimate our military. And most importantly, how to control the media so they will ignore important issues so they can focus on her hair. Since the dems. have no “bad hair days” there is nothing negative for the media to report on, including these fore mentioned “important” issues. I guess she just doesn’t realize how important it is to get a Muslim extremeist in the White House!

  20. #20 Reginald Selkirk
    October 24, 2008

    Sarah Palin, Oct 24 2008

    “We don’t need smooth talk that glosses over that question. We need straight talk that answers it.”

    Somehow, that’s not how I remember the vice presidential debate.

  21. #21 GFB
    October 24, 2008

    i agree. even as a supporter of hers, i was disappointed in that aspect of the debate. also, i think Biden handled self with class. it was a very civil debate, a rarity now days.
    while Sarah didn’t lie, exaggerate, or slander, she should get a demerit for her style of answers.
    while we are at it, why don’t we apply this statement to Barak Hussein Obama. unanswered questions like:
    what was your involvement with ACORN?
    what relationship do/did you have with Mr. Ayres
    how did you pay for your ivy league education?
    how could you afford a 1.5 million dollar house just out of school?
    is it just coincidence that your neighbor is Rezko?
    are you sure that “my Muslim faith” was a slip of the tongue?
    was the statement of “57 states” bad geography, or a reference to the 57 Islamic states?
    what about your self proclaimed alliance with the radical African Nationalists? you know, the ones who perfected “necklacing” (the art of putting a tire filled with gas around the neck of a person, and setting it on fire.)
    are you a citizen of the U.S. or Kenya?
    and most importantly, if you have justifiable answers, why haven’t we heard them yet?
    granted it is not quite like sidestepping in a debate, but sidestepping is sidestepping…

  22. #22 GFB
    October 24, 2008

    Jim H.,
    are you sure that it is not you that is poorly educated, or did you just fail to put your “pissing match” aside? whether or not you like Gov. Palin, at least try to get something right. with an I.Q. of 120, and a college degree, she is certainly above average, not “poorly educated”. being naive, or superstitious certainly doesn’t apply. a fundamental Christian means one who has made a conscious decision that the Bible is the Word of God, and dedicating ones life to this truth. the exact same beliefs as Billy Graham, who is well known as being a naive, superstitious old fool, or is He actually well admired? Naive and superstitious is reserved for atheists/agnostics. Aimee Semple McPherson, according to Wikipedia, was an avowed agnostic as a teenager. (see previous sentence) That is the exact opposite of Gov. Palin. you couldn’t have more wrong if you had tried. She is the governor of Alaska, and getting paid what the job dictates. unless you know of any other income ( it is permissable to own a private company and have your spouse work) you have hit “wrong” right on the head, again. her wardrobe is from her party so that she will project the image that they want. it is their effort that dictates the wardrobe. by the way, don’t you think that the other candidates get similar perks? she has a track record that is consistent with her giving stuff to charity, or giving back what she could have had, but turned down. Remember the state of Alaska’s jet? you could have bought it on ebay. What exactly is Gov. Palin doing different than any other elected official? or is it just your way of slandering Gov. Palin and Christians at the same time? If you really feel the need to run down this lady, at least get ONE fact right.

  23. #23 Jim Harrison
    October 24, 2008

    GFB uses a great many words in a bad cause; but when somebody is barking at the moon, it is perhaps best not to reply.

  24. #24 GFB
    October 25, 2008

    Jim H. I apologize for the tone of my response.

    I don’t understand why intellectuals, like yourself, need to personally attack the lady. Wouldn’t it be more prudent to analyze the affects of the candidate on real issues? for example, giving all illegal aliens free social security benefits, medicaid, welfare, free housing, and subsidized education that most Americans don’t get? and the fact that you and i will pay for these 12 million illegal aliens benefits? i can make no apology for what i said, but i sincerely apologize again for the way i said it.

  25. #25 Jim Harrison
    October 26, 2008

    There are matters of fact and matters of value. I certainly don’t expect people with different priorities to switch over to mine. Thing is, though, a lot of the debates–or shouting matches–are about matters of fact. For example, GFB is apparently concerned that illegal aliens are getting free social security, medicare, and so forth. Unless a great many of them are forging paperwork, I don’t think very many illegals are getting social security or medicare at all. There has been a long debate among economists about whether they break even as far as benefits are concerned because they do pay various kinds of taxes, and they do a lot of valuable work as, by the way, McCain has pointed out on several occasions. Incidentally, if you don’t count illegal immigration itself, the illegals don’t commit very much crime either. Meanwhile, since they tend to be younger than the rapidly aging population of American citizens, they put less stress on the health system than one would expect from their numbers. All of which are reasons why McCain doesn’t beat the anti-immigrant drum except for tactical political reasons. He knows the serious economic problems of the United States can not be laid at their door. Anyhow the influx of illegals has much slowed because of the generally lousiness of our economy. At this rate, maybe we’ll end up slipping over the Rio Grande in the other direction. Seems to me that the issue is a huge red herring. We’ve got other problems that are vastly more pressing.

    For the record, I guess you could be unhappy about illegal immigration because of the role it plays in altering the demographics of the U.S. population. That is a value question, though with or without more immigrants, non-hispanic whites are going to be in the minority in a few years and that’s not a matter of values but of facts. We can deal with it in a variety of ways, but we can’t chose not to deal with it. My preference, which I believe was also the preference of many of the founders of the country, was to define American nationality in terms of political ideals and aspirations rather than race or ethnicity. A hundred years ago we seem to have collectively decided that it was OK for Americans to be from Italy or Greece or Poland even to be Jews or Armenians or Lebanese. I reckon we’ll still be Americans if a lot of us are named Sanchez or even Obama.

  26. #26 GFB
    October 26, 2008

    my concern is not the current status of the percent of illegal aliens now “slipping through the cracks” with S.S. benefits. the reason i do not feel it is a “red herring”, is that the illegal alien issue that i am referring to is in the near future, not the past, or even current situation. between Obama’s past declarations and voting records, it is obvious (and well documented) that he intends to give the 12 million current illegals full benefits of S.S, welfare, housing, education, medicaid, drivers licenses, et cetera, en masse and without even a penny of contributions from them, toward their costs. This huge and extremely quick change in the income versus expenses of the social security structure will certainly
    overload an already strained situation to the crisis level, forcing additional tax burdens for all naturalized citizens. in an odd twist of fate, those immigrants who actually followed the law by putting in the necessary time and effort to become naturalized citizens (along with us all) will be paying for those who don’t.

    also, keep in mind that a key component of the plans of the terrorists from 9-11 included obtaining drivers licenses for flying lessons, airline tickets, and much more. the verification and identification that a drivers licenses offers the bearer must be monitored through legalized citizenship, or the results can be catastrophic, as we have already seen.

    my concern is not racially motivated. 12 million (almost) instantaneous additions to S.S. and benefits without the necessary contributions made to the system has no specific racial qualifications.

    one hundred years ago, immigration and naturalization were mandatory. all one has to do is check out the history of Ellis Island in New York. that is all i was referring to regarding immigration, not any specific race.

    my motivation for the statement of concerns about this possible disaster, was to point out another of the many destructive plans of Obama if he is elected. these dangers are real, non patriotic, radical Muslim based ideals that are ignored, so that the media, and public they sway, can focus on the wardrobe of Gov. Palin. the example that this response was not about the comparatively minor problem of the current situation, but the potential catastrophic ramifications of mass benefits awarded to illegals, benefits paid into for many years by every naturalized citizen, shows that the priorities of the media (and those they influence) are seriously askew.

  27. #27 SLC
    October 26, 2008

    Re GFB

    For the information of Mr. GFB, a noted young earth creationist, evolution denier, global warming denier, etc. the charges against ACORN are a crock of horse pucky. Ed Brayton and his colleagues over at the Michigan Messenger have investigated this issue and have found the accusations against ACORN to be totally without foundation and nothing more then a Rethuglican attempt to steal the 2008 election.

    By the way, most thinking people would consider the ties between Senator McCain and the Reverend Sun Yung Moon far more troubling then the ties between Senator Obama and the Reverend Wright. Reverend Wright is a sober, sane individual compared with Reverend Moon.

  28. #28 GFB
    October 26, 2008

    Hi SLC. Nice to hear from you again. Glad to see that you remember me. Interesting link you have provided.

    After reading your submission, I followed a link offered on the same page as that article. Here is what I found:

    (Referencing ACORN from the Nevada Secretary of State’s office,) “Some of them used nonexistent names, some of them used false addresses and some of them were duplicates of previously filed applications,” Walsh said, describing the complaints, which largely came from the registrar in Clark County, Nev.

    Secretary of State Ross Miller said the fraudulent registrations included forms for the starting lineup of the Dallas Cowboys football team.

    “Tony Romo is not registered to vote in the state of Nevada, and anybody trying to pose as Terrell Owens won’t be able to cast a ballot on Nov. 4,” Miller said. (cute, isn’t it?)

    Walsh said agents from both the secretary of state’s office and Nevada attorney general’s office conducted the raid at 9:30 a.m. local time, and “took a bunch of stuff.” Miller’s office reported seizing eight computer hard drives and about 20 boxes of documents. (That certainly could be a whole lot of names.) But it’s not the first time ACORN’s been under investigation for registration irregularities. The raid is the latest of at least nine investigations into possible fraudulent voter registration forms submitted by ACORN — the probes have involved ACORN workers in Wisconsin, New Mexico, Indiana and other states.

    In 2006, ACORN also committed what Washington Secretary of State Sam Reed called the “worse case of election fraud” in the state’s history.

    In the case, ACORN submitted just over 1,800 new voter registration forms, and all but six of the 1,800 names were fake.

    More recently, 27,000 registrations handled by the group from January to July 2008 “went into limbo because they were incomplete, inaccurate, or fraudulent,” said James Terry, chief public advocate at the Consumers Rights League. (Mickey Mouse registered in Florida, and those folks already have enough problems counting votes.)

    You may want to inform Mr. Brayton and his Michigan group that they may be rather lonely. In fact, the Detroit news, located in a city that has consistently a democratic stronghold, endorses McCain.

    I also believe that most thinking people would realize the differences in the “ties” between those in your comparisons. Senator McCain is a Christian, not a “moonie” thus not influenced by the doctrine of the Rev. S.Y.Moon.

    Rev. Wright is not sane or sober compared to anyone. His doctrine calls for bloody racial wars, and mass killing of the white “suppressors” among other abominations. This country has come a long way in its efforts to right the wrongs of discrimination. Rosa Parks and Dr. Martin Luther King’s dreams of equality and freedom for all in a peaceful society are finally nearing a long over due fruition. Genocide, on the scale that Rev. Wright seeks, can only be compared to the actions of Hitler, Stalin, and other godless dictators.
    Rev. Wright’s theological distortions of Christianity are unparalleled. His belief in genocide, hatred, and the total desecration of God’s Holy Name can only be compared to satan himself. and don’t forget, Obama “worshipped” under Rev. Wright for 20 years. (and probably would still be doing so, if it had not become a political liability.)

    In summation, we once again see the world differently. That’s OK. In fact, I think we would have difficulties only if we ever agreed. But I certainly still respect you and your misguided opinions. (only joking about the misguided part!) till next time…

  29. #29 Jim Harrison
    October 26, 2008

    An amazing number of people don’t seem to understand how social security works. There’s a piece of video making the rounds that shows McCain denouncing it because current recipients are getting their money from current workers. That’s just a weird charge. Any pension plan, retirement account, or just plain savings works that way. Present consumption always depends on present production. Or should we be burying cases of pork and beans in the backyard?

    In my lifetime, contributions to social security have been greater than withdrawals from the system. Payroll taxes have been a major source of funds for the general budget. Since payroll taxes are not progressive, increasing their rate is another way to reduce the overall progressivity of the American tax system. Now the Republicans are proposing to cut back on the eventual benefits of social security. In effect, they are proposing to raid the company pension fund to pay for CEO bonuses.

  30. #30 SLC
    October 26, 2008

    Re GFB

    1. Just for the information of Mr. GFB, Mr. Brayton doesn’t live in Detroit, he lives in Grand Rapids, the hometown of former Congressman and President Gerald Ford. In addition, Mr. Brayton is a Libertarian who does not support either Senator McCain or Senator Obama.

    2. The fact is that Mr. GFB is unaware that ACORN and all other such organizations are required by law to submit all registrations they solicit, even if they know them to be fraudulent. They have no choice in the matter. In fact, if they do not submit all such registrations, they can be held criminally libel. As Mr. Brayton points out, the fraudulent registrations were a fraud against ACORN as well as the state registrars and that, in fact, most of them were brought to the attention of the latter by ACORN.

    3. Mr. GFBs’ claim that Reverend Wright has called for genocidal wars is a god damn lie. To state that Mr. Wright, who by the way is a decorated Vietnam War veteran, unlike draft dodgers like George W. Bush and Richard Cheney, an obscure minister in an obscure church is in any way, shape, form, or regard more dangerous then a billionaire whackjob with a world wide business empire like Reverend Wright is evidence that Mr. GFB is seriously deranged. By the way, Reverend Moon claims to be he second coming of Joshua of Nazareth which most Christian organizations would consider to be blasphemy. In addition, the claim that Reverend Wright is somehow affiliated with Hitler and Stalin is completely ridiculous. As a matter of fact, I would argue that Governor Palin is the one who has such an affiliation. The minister of her church, who is at least as nutty as Reverend Wright, invited a Jews for Joshua of Nazareth representative to give a guest sermon at which the governor was present. This asshole proceeded to claim that the Jews who perished in the Holocaust deserved their fate for their failure to accept Joshua of Nazareth. This is in addition to his inviting an African witch doctor to give a guest sermon.

    4. Mr. GFB is absolutely correct that Senator McCain is not himself a moonie. He and his top advisor Charles Black are facilitators for Reverend Moon. Here’s a couple of links detailing McCains’ ties to the good reverend.

    5. As for illegal aliens and social security, many of them are actually contributing to the fund with no prospect of ever collecting buck one from it.

    6. Mr. GFB claims that Senator Obama is a Muslim. Well, former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Colin Powell, begs to differ with him. I’ll stick with the general.

    Mr. GFB says that he and I see the world differently. I entirely agree. I accept methodological naturalism, he does not. Period, end of story.

  31. #31 GFB
    October 26, 2008

    Social security is a very unique animal. In retirement and disability claims, the monthly payments received by individuals are based on their lifelong contributions. Ideally, what benefits one receives are essentially their own money, and it is also based upon the average expectancy of life. With the increase in the average life expectancy, along with increased disability claims, and growing medical costs, the fund is being depleted faster than it is growing. To make up for this imbalance, money is being taken from today’s workers to pay benefits for yesterdays workers. Thus the problems of the solvency of the system. The real potential victims of this imbalance are the presently working people. The younger one is, the more likely the possibility of major problems.
    This problem is quickly approaching the crisis stage, and something needs to be done ASAP to save social security. To my knowledge, no fail-safe plan has been proposed. Neither the problems, nor the solution are of an individual political party’s concern. Hopefully a bi-partisan resolution will be the most effective, since it is problematic for all Americans.

  32. #32 SLC
    October 26, 2008

    Re GFB

    Mr. GFB is somewhat confused. He apparently is unaware that Social Security and Medicare are two separate and distinct funds. Indeed, the Medicare fund is in financial trouble and something needs to be done there. However, the Social Security fund is in much better shape and no immediate action is required there. I would suggest that Mr. GFB stop listening to morons like Robert Samuelson and cokeheads like Lawrence Kudlow Attached is a link to a blog entry by Mike the Mad Biologist in which he refutes the claims of Social Security insolvency. I am only posting a link to one of the threads on his blog. He has a number of blog entries on this subject.

  33. #33 Jim Harrison
    October 26, 2008

    Presently working people are at risk of not getting their social security benefits. After all, it is perfectly possible that the Republicans will some day get enough power to destroy the system, which, absent their intervention, is in perfectly good shape.

    Remember. There are two distinct issues about funding retirement: the question of whether workers in the future will produce enough goods and provide enough services to take care of themselves, their children, and retired people and the separate question of how benefits will be distributed to retired people. The first problem can be managed if we can increase the productivity of labor sufficiently. That involves such governmental and private activities as improving education, building infrastructure, and financing research. The second problem can be managed if we have an open and democratic government. Screwing over Social Security won’t help.

  34. #34 GFB
    October 26, 2008

    well SLC, you are at it again…

    1. “You may want to inform Mr. Brayton and his Michigan group that they may be rather lonely. In fact, the Detroit news, located in a city that has consistently a democratic stronghold, endorses McCain.”

    where did i say that Mr. Brayton lives in Detroit? state Mr. Brayton’s political party, or who he endorses?

    2. the argument was not about submitting the registrations they solicited, it is about how they obtained these registrations. Did Mr. Brayton comment on the 9 states that have ACORN under investigation? Their involvement in the “Worst case of voter fraud in the state of Wa. history? or the 27,000 registrations handled by ACORN this year that are now in “limbo” for various problems (including fraud)?

    3.on Hannity and Combs, Rev. Wright made the following statements:
    god dam America
    The white USofKKKA sponsored state terrorism against Palestinians and black Africans.
    and his quote;
    “The loss of a few thousand Americans on 9-11 is nothing compared to the (white) Americans killings of millions through terrorism.”

    When Hannity tried to ask questions of Rev. Wright, the Rev. kept saying “have you studied the work of Dr. Cone over and over. i counted 12 times. He also brought up black theology presented by Dr. Cone. Here is Dr. Cone’s definition of black theology.

    “Black theology refuses to accept a God who is not identified totally with the goals of the black community. If God is not for us and against white people, then he is a murderer, and we had better kill him. The task of black theology is to kill gods who do not belong to the black community… Black theology will accept only the love of God which participates in the DESTRUCTION OF THE WHITE ENEMY. What we need is the divine love as expressed in Black Power, which is the power of black people to DESTROY THEIR OPPRESSORS HERE AND NOW BY ANY MEANS AT THEIR DISPOSAL. Unless God is participating in this holy activity, we must reject his love.” (seriously deranged?)

    Just because Mr. McCain knows Rev. Moon does not even imply he shares any beliefs with him. And as i told you before, because a church invites a guest to speak does not mean that the church, or any of its members adheres to the speaker’s beliefs.

    4. your effort to confuse an acquaintence with sharing similar beliefs, is, even for you, quite lame.

    5.Illegal aliens contributing to a program that they are currently not even able to apply for? please tell me that you are kidding. the 12 million i was referring to are not registered, paying into, or receiving any benefits.

    6. I certainly respect Gen. Powell. But his impressive abilities as a general have nothing to do with his opinions of the political candidate he endorses. Remember Obama’s “my Muslim faith”, and the “57 states” (which are muslim, not American) not to mention his endorsement of partial birth abortion? (the tenets of Christianity are completely opposed to this murder.)

    Boy, the venom must have really built up in you, this time you were 6 for 6. Can’t you do any better?

    “Black theology refuses to accept a God who is not identified totally with the goals of the black community. If God is not for us and against white people, then he is a murderer, and we had better kill him. The task of black theology is to kill gods who do not belong to the black community… Black theology will accept only the love of God which participates in the destruction of the white enemy. What we need is the divine love as expressed in Black Power, which is the power of black people to destroy their oppressors here and now by any means at their disposal. Unless God is participating in this holy activity, we must reject his love.”

  35. #35 Kevin
    October 27, 2008


    “Social security is a very unique animal”

    Hogwash! Either it IS unnique or it is NOT. You cannot be very or somewhat unique….

    and factually…

    “Ideally, what benefits one receives are essentially their own money” – NOT! and what does this even mean? are you talking about some other, ideal according to you, system?

    “growing medical costs” applies to Medicare/aid NOT social security.

    “To make up for this imbalance, money is being taken from today’s workers to pay benefits for yesterdays workers.”

    you really don’t know what you are talking you? SS is currently running a SURPLUS. do you know what that means? and, rightly or wrongly, SS ALWAYS takes money from current workers, cause if you are retired and not working…you are not PAYING!

    Do you think there are piles of $100 bills in sacks in the basement?

    What do you think paid for all the tax cuts for the rich? They got all the money up front, and will complain bitterly about having to give some back. They better because you and I already put our money in the system and we want some of it back.

  36. #36 Robert O'Brien
    October 27, 2008

    you really don’t know what you are talking you? SS is currently running a SURPLUS. do you know what that means? and, rightly or wrongly, SS ALWAYS takes money from current workers, cause if you are retired and not working…you are not PAYING!

    Sounds like a Ponzi scheme.

  37. #37 Jim Harrison
    October 27, 2008

    Whatever it sounds like to a conservative ideologist, Social Security is actually a contract between the generations. Take care of the grandfathers, and the sons will one day take care of you.

    Social Security and Medicare have prevented an enormous amount of human suffering. They’ve made life more decent for millions of people. What libertarian dogmatism has to put up against that is one of the great mysteries.

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