Sharon Angle Raises a Whopping $14 Million This Summer

October 13, 2010 · Posted in The Capitol · Comment 

The big political news yesterday was that the GOP’s Tea Party candidate in Nevada Sharon Angle, a polarizing figure if ever there was one, raised a whopping $ 14 million this summer. How did she do it? Read this roundup.

Some are surprised. Why? Looney Tunes always grossed well.

The Moderate Voice

Indian Summer In Minnesota

October 9, 2010 · Posted in The Capitol · Comment 


Here in Minnesota, we are enjoying a few days of unseasonable warmth-a classic Indian Summer. I took this photo off my deck this morning; it illustrates how beautiful an autumn we are enjoying. Click to enlarge:


Unfortunately, October also features the baseball post-season. It has been a long time since October was kind to the Minnesota Twins. 2010 was a great year for baseball in Minnesota, as Target Field was inaugurated. Every game was a sellout, and the Twins compiled the best home record in baseball while strolling to an easy pennant in the American League Central.

For the Twins in recent years, however, the post-season has been the hard part. You can look up the numbers, but during the Gardenhire era they are just about winless in the post-season, and their chief nemesis has been the New York (“Damn”) Yankees. This year they drew the Yanks again, as Tampa Bay won the AL East. The Twins enjoyed home-field advantage over the wild-card Yankees, but that didn’t do them much good. The Yanks won both games in Minneapolis.

Tonight the third and last game of the series is being played at Yankee Stadium. As I write, the Yanks are up 5-0. They will complete the sweep tonight. Some Minnesotans argue that the current Twins team lacks “heart,” unlike that of the late ’80s and early ’90s. That could be, but I think the problem is explainable by more objective factors: the Twins simply aren’t built for the post-season.

The team’s virtues are depth and competence, especially in the field. Those are wonderful qualities for a 162-game regular season. You can win 90 to 95 games a year by having players in reserve to replace those who get hurt and by not throwing the ball away against teams like the Kansas City Royals. Unfortunately, when the Twins get to the post-season, depth doesn’t mean much-they can only play nine players at once, and starters are irrelevant after the top three-and the Yankees and other teams in the post-season don’t throw the ball away, either.

So, year after year, the Twins’ strengths are neutralized in October, and their weaknesses become glaring. They have no dominant starting pitchers, and hardly any power. This year, once Justin Morneau was sidelined by a concussion shortly before the All-Star break, their only legitimate home run hitter was Jim Thome, age 40. Against mediocre or lousy teams you can string together four or five singles and errors and score some runs. Against the teams that make the post-season, that rarely happens.

So, once again, the Twins make an early exit. Manager Ron Gardenhire got himself ejected from Game 2, as if to demonstrate to the team and its fans that he isn’t satisfied with another early exit. That’s fine, but the team will have to be restructured if it is to do any better next year.

Still, 2010 was a great year for Minnesota’s baseball fans. Target Field may be the best baseball venue in America, and it was unquestionably the place to be in Minneapolis this year. So, a fond farewell.


Wait ’til next year!

Power Line

Those awful Zionist summer camps

October 5, 2010 · Posted in Uncategorized · Comment 

Palestine News Network writes:

Israeli Channel 2 broadcasted a report on summer camps for settler’s children in the West Bank, focusing on building settlements and singing religious songs.

One of the administrators of the camp said, “We are instituting the idea of settlements in Judea and Samaria to increase focus on building in them. The youth learn in this camp the importance of settlements and the hard work and number of hours that go into building them in the Land of Israel.”

How horrendous - singing about building towns and singing religious songs! That’s just terrible! Much better if they would learn how to murder, the way that Hamas summer camps do:

The Fatah-affiliated Palestine Press Agency reported that the Hamas camps had been established in closed areas in various parts of the Gaza Strip so that the families would not see what’s happening inside them.

The agency quoted eyewitnesses as saying that children were being taught how to fire automatic rifles and handle hand grenades.

“The military training is taking place in the early hours; children are being taught how to use Kalashnikov assault rifles and other weapons,” said one eyewitness.

“The Hamas supervisors are also giving lectures to the children accusing Fatah of collaboration with Israel and betraying the Palestinians. They are also quoting phrases from the Quran that encourage the children to kill the ‘traitors.’”

Back to PNN:

Professor Ibrahim Abu Jaber said in an exclusive interview with PNN, “The idea of Zionism is covered by the tint of religion, and the leaders of the Zionist movement focus on that angle to establish settlements and guarantee that they continue. Before, the Jews didn’t live in the mountains of the West Bank. But after the brainwashing was complete, the extremist movements continued night and day until a new generation occupied the hills.”

Of course, the Arabs didn’t live in the mountains either, so the Jewish towns and villages are not taking away anyone’s homes.

Then our peace-loving moderate Professor Jaber says what he really thinks:

“They’re not only settling in the West Bank, but in the greater occupied Palestine of 1948 and close to Arab cities.”

And there we have it. It is not the fact that Jews are living in the West Bank that gets Arabs hot and bothered - it is the fact that Jews are living in Israel altogether.

In an article that pretends to show how extremist Jews are, we can see that the average Arab is far more intolerant than even the most intransigent Jewish “settler.”

(h/t My Right Word)

Elder of Ziyon

WSJ/NBC poll has GOP riding the wave of Wreckovery Summer

September 7, 2010 · Posted in The Capitol · Comment 

Gnarly, dude.

As if the Post/ABC poll didn’t deliver enough bad news to Democrats this morning, the usually sympathetic WSJ/NBC poll hits them again, and hard.  Barack Obama’s approval level has fallen to its lowest level in the survey series, 45/49, and confidence in his economic leadership has cratered.  But it’s the generic ballot question that will [...]

Read this post »

Hot Air » Top Picks

Republicans highlight ‘summer of failure’

September 7, 2010 · Posted in The Capitol · Comment 
 The NRSC is out with a new web ad Tuesday.

The NRSC is out with a new web ad Tuesday.

(CNN) - It hasn’t been the best of summers for congressional Democrats and now Republicans are making an effort to remind voters just how difficult the last three months have been for the party in charge in Washington.

In a new Web video out Tuesday morning, the National Republican Senatorial Committee repeatedly flashes reports from a wide variety of cable news programs that report a rising unemployment rate, question the efficacy of the stimulus program, discuss the possibility of a double-dip recession, and show President Obama’s sinking approval ratings.

The ad also takes digs at the president for embarking on a 10 day vacation in Martha’s Vineyard and first lady Michelle Obama for visiting Spain on a lavish trip with her daughter earlier this year.

“So … How was YOUR summer?” the ad asks. “The Recovery Starts November 2nd.”

CNN Political Ticker

As Summer Ends

September 7, 2010 · Posted in The Capitol · Comment 


Maybe it was the cumulative effect of blogging for a decade but I found words difficult these past three weeks of vacation. Not just writing them, but even reading them. I didn't look at a single news or opinion site online; I barely responded to personal emails; the books I intended to read lay unread. I inhaled the dunes and the air and the sea in so far as my lungs were able to operate at all; smoked a few cigars; admired a few beards; and hacked up more dark-colored phlegm than I can remember since the crippling asthmatic summers of my youth in the wheat fields of East Anglia. 

I glanced at the papers from time to time and finally managed to read last Sunday's New York Times, which was an almost comic expression of liberal despair (made bearable by Michael Gross's VF portrait of the creepiness of Palinism). Prayer, for the most part, eluded me; dog hair clogged the doorways of our first summer in the tiny cottage we bought last September; bears packed the streets, alongside countless sightings of dead ringers for Elena Kagan; dead-heading coreopses filled the mornings; and the cultural high-points for me were a new and stunning exhibit by the Cape artist Chet Jones and the performance art of Dina Martina, whose one-"woman" show I managed to see eleven times.

And so it was a strangely exquisite summer up here on the Cape, as beautiful as it has been oppressively hot and humid elsewhere. Even the dog days of July's heat wave had a joyous vibe about them in this little ashtray of a town, as Dina has it.

Perhaps some people just decided that simply enjoying a summer's day - imagine that! - was the best way to beat the blues. I've seen this town stricken by plague, then gripped by real estate madness, then giddy with marriage rights and now struggling through foreclosure after foreclosure. And I'm sure some of the vacationers were here because it's less expensive than traveling abroad, and because there was almost no rain for months. But there was also a simple kind of pleasure in the air that I haven't felt for a while, an appreciation of what is right here still in front of us, for all our problems and rancor and division: a free country, a balmy summer's night, a warm bay, and new friends now mingled with the old ones. 

For me, conservatism is partly about loving more deeply what we already know. And each of the now sixteen consecutive summers I have spent here - resolutely refusing to leave for any reason at all - are like photographic exposures upon exposures in my mind and memory - until everything is different and the same; and nothing is quite in focus; and the last thing that hangs in the air as the town exhales into September is a trace of someone's expression of joy, captured once, now overlaid on all the others.

Yes, I am a lucky man and this remains the place where my ashes one day will dissipate. And I'm glad to be back.

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New York Times - East Anglia - Performance art - Real estate - Blues

The Daily Dish | By Andrew Sullivan

CNN, Rasmussen and Gallup Agree, Recovery Summer is a Democratic Party BUMMER

September 6, 2010 · Posted in The Capitol · Comment 

Today, Labor Day marks the traditional start of the campaigning season. With only 56 days till election day, the GOP seems to be widening its generic advantage over the President’s party of progressive Democrats. According to the latest CNN Poll, the Republican Party has opened up a seven point lead with registered voters  in the generic congressional poll (last month the lead was only 3%).

What seems to be happening is that the undecideds are breaking for the GOP as their percentage increased to 52% and the Democratic preference stayed at 45%.

The GOP should not throw a party. When it comes to favorability ratings, both  parties are not viewed unfavorably by 49% of the population.

Trend wise the CNN generic numbers tend to match the trends seen by Gallup and Rasmussen . The chart below shows the trends of each of the three sources from April through Today. The CNN dates were used as a base and the Rasmussen and Gallup numbers were matched to CNN.  In some cases the Gallup or Rasmussen poll dates were a day or two off but since the purpose of the chart was to evaluate the trend, this was deemed close enough.

There are six lines on the chart, each of the blue lines, is the generic Democratic Party preference for each of the polls, and the Red are the GOP Preferences. (if you click on the chart you will be able to see a larger version).

Generally we see that the GOP had a small lead around tax day, but in June when the GOP started its “recovery summer” effort the lead began to shrink, but when it became obvious the economic situation is getting worse, the GOP has increased its lead and is indeed much larger than before.

What does this mean?  Generally America wants Obama’s policies to fix the economy. At the first sign of economic improvement, their generic congressional preferences changed. The Democratic Party saw this and began their Recovery summer effort. But when things turned sour, Voters began to realize that they were once again being promised a recovery that wasn’t happening and, I believe, they have given up on promises from this administration.  That doesn’t mean that if things turn around voters wont turn around, but it probably means that it will take results rather than program promises to turn voters around again.


Recovery Summer: Wish You Were Here!

September 4, 2010 · Posted in The Capitol · Comment 


Michael Ramirez provides a postscript to Recovery Summer, in the form of a postcard; click to enlarge:


Power Line

‘Recovery Summer’ Comes to an End

September 4, 2010 · Posted in The Capitol · Comment 

You can read our report HERE or watch our “World News” report here:

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Barack Obama - Unemployment - Economic - President of the United States - Employment
Political Punch

US Senate Briefing, Fri 9/3/10: The summer is in recovery; we wish it well

September 3, 2010 · Posted in The Capitol · Comment 

With summer drawing to an end, the Bureau of Labor Statistics announced the August employment numbers today, showing that the jobless situation is little changed from June and in some aspects is worse. According to BLS, 54,000 jobs were lost in August, while the unemployment rate ticked up to 9.6%. Sadly, 14.9 million Americans remain out of work.

Back in June, the White House dubbed this “Recovery Summer.” CNN wrote at the time, “Vice President Joe Biden . . . helps kick off what the White House calls ‘Recovery Summer,’ a six week long push to highlight what the administration says will be jobs created this summer and fall by a surge in federal stimulus spending across the country.” Just a month ago, Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner wrote in The New York Times, “Welcome to the Recovery.”

Unfortunately, it’s been a summer of dismal economic news. There are 283,000 fewer jobs now than when “Recovery Summer” was declared. Just last week, the AP reported, “The economy turns out to be weaker than we thought, and the outlook for the rest of the year is now looking dimmer. New figures issued Friday show the economy struggled this spring, growing at a meager 1.6 percent annual pace. The initial estimate was 2.4 percent, and even that was anemic.” Also last week, The Wall Street Journal reported, “Existing-home sales plunged to their lowest level in 15 years in July as inventories soared, painting a grim picture for the housing market absent government support in a stubbornly sluggish economy.” A month ago, Bloomberg News reported, “The number of Americans who are receiving food stamps rose to a record 40.8 million in May as the jobless rate hovered near a 27-year high . . . .” In July, the Los Angeles Times reported that American home foreclosures “hit a record high in the second quarter.”

This is why so few Americans are inclined to take President Obama’s assurance this morning that “[W]e are moving forward because of the steps that we’ve taken.” A recent Gallup poll found 59% disapprove of Obama’s handling of the economy. And CBS News pointed out last week, “Americans are more pessimistic about the country’s economy than they were last month . . . . Thirty-four percent now say the economy is getting worse, up from 26 percent [in July]. Only 20 percent now say the economy is getting better, according to the poll, conducted Aug. 20 - 24.”

Clearly there’s been little to no “recovery” during this summer and Americans are frustrated. As Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell said Monday, “[I]t’s no surprise that most Americans think the country is on the wrong track and that Democrat policies have failed to do anything to fix their top concern, the economy. It’s time to listen to the American people, lower the deficit by reducing out-of-control spending, prevent tax hikes and . . . create the environment necessary to grow sustainable, private sector jobs.”

On The Floor

The Senate has adjourned for August recess and is not scheduled to reconvene until September 13th.

When the Senate returns, it will consider a circuit court nominee and is then expected to return to Democrats’ small business bill, H.R. 5297. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has scheduled a cloture vote for Tuesday, Sept. 14th on an amendment to the bill from Sen. Mike Johanns (R-NE) which would repeal the onerous 1099 reporting requirements from the health care law.

From the Communications Center

ICYMI: VIDEO: “More Job Loss”

Around the Hill

Bureau of Labor Statistics: 54,000 Jobs Lost In August, Unemployment At 9.6%

The Wall Street Journal: Wyden Defects on ObamaCare

Liberty Pundits Blog

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