September 29, 2004

2nd Quarter GDP Growth Much Higher Than Originally Estimated
— Ace

Adjusted by a big half-point upwards, from 2.8% to 3.3%

My source Deep Stoat tips me before it's up on Yahoo Finance. (I think.)

A chart here; full report here.

Some highlights:

* During the 2nd quarter of 2004, GDP grew at a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 3.3 percent. Over the past year, GDP has increased by 4.8 percent.

* Business investment was stronger than expected, growing at a robust 12.5 percent annualized pace in the 2nd quarter.

* Export growth was strong and the revised 2nd quarter trade deficit was slightly smaller than previously estimated.

* Residential investment, primarily home building, was also revised up and is now estimated to have grown at a very strong 16.5 percent annualized rate. This is the second strongest quarterly growth in home building in eight years.


CNN previously said that the initial reading of 3.0% growth was "much lower" than analysts' expectations of 3.7% growth.

Now, see if you can follow this crazy math:

If a .7% gap between expectations and early readings constitutes a "much lower" rate of growth, will CNN also report that an upward revision of .5% constitutes a "much higher" rate of growth than earlier reported?

I wouldn't bet the farm on that proposition.

On the other hand, I'm quite ready to provide the cowbell that's so obviously required by this turn of events:

Update: The insurgent militant reporters at Reuters have a glowing sub-hed for the faster growth:

NOT SO BAD, REALLY

Not so bad, really. When it fails to match analysts' predictions by .7%, it's much slower growth. When it's adjusted back up by .5%, it's "not so bad, really."


Posted by: Ace at 08:00 AM | Comments (2)
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EmailGate, Updated: CBS News Fails to Note Its "Worried Apolitical Republican Mom" Is a Committed Political Activist
— Ace

It wasn't just the emails that were phony; it was the main subject of the piece as well.

Although CBS News presented its subject as a "Republican" who didn't seem to care much for politics, it turns out that, of course, she's a rabid political activist:

The person at the center of Schlesinger's piece is a woman named Beverly Cocco, a Philadelphia crossing guard who is "sick to my stomach" that her two sons might be drafted. In his report, Schlesinger portrayed her as an apolitical (and even Republican) mom worried about the safety of her children.

"Beverly Cocco has spent most of her life protecting children in Philadelphia," Schlesinger cooed as he introduced his subject. "But as Election Day approaches, it's her own two grown sons who Beverly is most worried about."

Next the viewer hears an almost perfect soundbite from the "average" mother, carefully selected by Karas.

"I go to bed every night and I pray, and I actually get sick to my stomach. I'm very worried. I'm scared. I'm absolutely scared. I'm petrified."

At this point, an honest reporter would have seen fit to disclose Cocco's political connections. But Schlesinger refuses, leaving his profilee for the moment to cite an anonymous chain letter (more on that later) and then talk about what both President Bush and John Kerry think about the draft.

...

Beverly Cocco seems nice enough on camera, but she is hardly the "Pennsylvania voter" that CBS News wants you to believe she is. In fact, the apolitical mother of two is a chapter president of an advocacy group called People Against the Draft (PAD) which, in addition to opposing any federal conscription, seeks to establish a "peaceful, rational foreign policy" by bringing all U.S. troops out of Iraq. Like Schlesinger's Cocco, the group portrays itself as "nonpartisan"although its leadership seems to be entirely bereft of any epublicans.

The group's domain is registered to a man named Jacob Levich, a left-wing activist who in a 2001 essay compared the Bush Administration to the totalitarian government portrayed in George Orwell's 1984.

PAD also lists Anita Dutt, a Green Party activist who is also a member of an anti-war group called Bronx Action for Justice and Peace. In a March 3, 2003 New York Times profile of the group reprinted on the organization's web site, Heidi Hynes, one of its leaders, said of her fellow members that "none of us are Republicans."

And of course that's not the first time CBS News has used stealth liberal activists posing as "just normal nonpartisan concerned mommies," as RatherBiased.com reports.

Posted by: Ace at 07:24 AM | Comments (7)
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Do My Work For Me: Debate Drinking Game
— Ace

Boy, it sure is fun painting this white picket fence. I can't believe how lucky a boy I am to be painting on such nice day.

You want to try paintin' the fence? I don't know. It's really a lot of fun. What do you have in trade?

AnnieL wants to know what sort of a drinking game can be played during the debate. I'm stumped, myself-- I've never played drinking games, unless you count "drowning your feelings of inadequacy and residual childhood rage with Nyquil and prescription back-pills" as a "game."

So, if anyone has any good ideas, post them here, and I'll use the best ones for a Debate Drinking Game.

Ace of Spades HQ: Interactive Entertainment. And by "interactive," I mean I just sit here and drink Nyquil-and-prescription-back-pills highballs.


Posted by: Ace at 07:08 AM | Comments (14)
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Reuters: "Random Violent Crime" Is the New Euphemism for Likely Islamism-Inspired Terrorism
— Ace

An Islamic Algerian man attempted to force a Norwegian airliner to crash using an axe he apparently smuggled aboard.

How are we sure he was attempting to crash the plane? Well, we don't have much evidence of that, except what he screamed out in lunatic rage:

"I’m going to crash this plane," screamed the asylum applicant[.]

Travelling Shoes notes that Reuters, ever alert for actions of a "militant" sort (like crashing passenger jets), offers the following paliative at the story's close:

Random violent crime is rare in the Nordic nation...

As it is in most nations, actually.

You know what's not quite so rare?

"Militant attacks." And/or "insurgency actions." Those aren't so rare as "random violent crime."

Posted by: Ace at 07:01 AM | Comments (3)
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This Race Is As Wide-Open as the LLM & Kerry Need It To Be
— Ace

Great point by an NRO reader.

Related: Howie Kurtz jumps on the New Liberal Conventional Wisdom, dubbing the polls not "fluid" but "volatile":

So Kerry not only has to catch up (to the degree these volatile polls show him behind)

"Volatile"? The big polls have consistently shown Bush ahead by 6-13 points. Even tossing out the 13, 12, and 11 point post-convention leads, there doesn't seem a lot of "volatility" in that persistent 6-8 point advantage.

The polls aren't just consistent with themselves; they're cross-consistent with each other.

But it's very "volatile." Gee, one day Bush is up by 13, the next day he has a paltry 8-point lead.

Posted by: Ace at 06:21 AM | Comments (1)
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September 28, 2004

Dan Rather Now Using Fake Emails For News Peg
— Ace

It's unbelievable, but it's true. Even as Dan Rather is being investigated for peddling transparently-sham forged documents, CBS News airs a story using already-debunked emails as the peg upon which to hang its draft-scare story.

RatherBiased has the full story. I'll just tease it.

Rather introduces a story "reported" by Richard Schlesinger. The "report" features video footage of these emails:

which can be read in their entirety here, and which have been thoroughly debunked as the typical dishonest wives'-tale chain letter at FactCheck.org.

Contrary to the claims in the email -- promoted by CBS News -- that the Selective Service is upping its budget in anticipation for a draft, the budget is actually flat:

The Selective Service Budget has not been increased. The scare story also gets it wrong when it claims the budget for the Selective Service is being increased by $28 million in 2004. In fact, the Selective Service System's budget is flat. Its total operating budget was $26 million in fiscal year 2003 (which ended last Sept. 30), and is $26 million for fiscal 2004 as well. Furthermore, the President is asking for $26 million again for fiscal year 2005, and the Office of Management and Budget actually projects that the agency will shrink in size from 161 employees to 156 next year. That's hardly gearing up for a draft.

Furthermore, it is not the Bush Administration, nor anyone actually interested in restoring a draft who has introduced the two "draft bills" in Congress. Democrats "pushing" bills to reinstate a draft, chiefly as a political stunt. Even the Democrats -- or especially the Democrats -- don't want a draft; they are "introducing" bills to reinstate the draft to call attention to whatever the hell it is that animates them these days.

The report publishes images of these emails as if they are genuine and their contents can be relied upon. Nowhere in the report does it state that the basic facts "reported" by the emails is in fact completely wrong. It features Bush and Kerry denying any interest in the draft, but then returns to a supposedly "Republican woman" -- aren't they all? -- being unconvinced.

After all-- she's got her emails. Emails that CBS News just publically endorsed.

Is this just another case of "aggressive journalism," or "journalism happening," as liberal media apologist Richard Cohen claims?

Posted by: Ace at 11:39 PM | Comments (21)
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60 Minutes: Not Very Forgiving About Stephen Glass' Fabrications
— Ace

It's ironic, and in a strict manner too, not in that fakey Alannis Morissette fashion.

When someone outside of CBS News was caught sending fake faxes to back up wholly-invented lies, Steve Kroft was a lot tougher than he seems to be on colleagues Rather, Howard, and Mapes.

(CBS) Every profession has its share of scandals, hoaxes and con men. And journalism is no exception.

Ahem.

Even the New York Times was victimized a few months ago when it was discovered that one of its reporters, Jayson Blair, had plagiarized quotes and fabricated material in more than 35 of his articles.

But before Jayson Blair, there was Stephen Glass.

And after Stephen Glass, there was 60 Minutes.

Glass, a 25-year-old rising star at The New Republic, wrote dozens of high-profile articles for a number of national publications in which he made things up.

The shock of it all.

As 60 Minutes first reported in May, he made up people, places and events. He made up organizations and quotations. Sometimes, he made up entire articles.

And to back it all up, he created fake notes, fake voicemails, fake faxes, even a fake Web site - whatever it took to deceive his editors, not to mention hundreds of thousands of readers.

Sounds like "fake documents" to me. And it sounds like he deceived far fewer people than Dan Rather did. Or at least fewer people than Dan Rather intended to deceive.

Glass talks to Correspondent Steve Kroft in his first interview since his journalism career ended in disgrace.

No comment.

...

“Like a stock graph, there's going to be exceptions in this. But the general trend of the stories is that they started out with a few made up details and quotes. And granted a few too many, of course. But a few. And then they progressed into stories that were completely fabricated. Just completely made up out of whole cloth.”

...

“I loved the electricity of people liking my stories. I loved going to story conference meetings and telling people what my story was going to be, and seeing the room excited. I wanted every story to be a home run.”

I think Mary Mapes knows well that feeling.

How did this all work? How did Glass draw readers into these lies?

“I would tell a story, and there would be fact A, which maybe was true. And then there would be fact B, which was sort of partially true and partially fabricated. And there would be fact C which was more fabricated and almost not true,” says Glass.

“And there would be fact D, which was a complete whopper. And totally not true. And so people would be with me on these stories through fact A and through fact B. And so they would believe me to C. And then at D they were still believing me through the story.”

Sort of "accurate but not authentic."

By 1998, he was earning more than $100,000 and selling fabricated stories to Rolling Stone, George, and Harper's Magazine. He was also getting his face on television. His articles always generated lots of interest and very few angry letters to the editor.

“And that's because much of the time I wrote fictional stories about fictional people at fictional times doing fictional things. And those people don't write letters,” he says.

And neither do dead men. As I've mentioned before, this story was shoddy in terms of sourcing and fact-checking, nevermind the ludicrously-bad forgeries.

But if those forgeries had looked a little better -- Dan Rather would have his "scoop," and anyone challenging the story would be termed a crank. And yet the forgeries would still be as shoddily-sourced and fake as the actual ones.

The only reason this media hoax was exposed was because those forgeries were so transparently sham that it was obvious to most experts, and many non-experts, upon first glance.

Fictitious people don't deny stories. Neither do dead men. Maybe the liberal legacy media ought to remember that the next time words or documents are said by a political partisan to come from a dead man.

...

Lane, who is now a reporter for the Washington Post, says that Glass might still be duping editors, if it weren't for an online version of Forbes magazine, which was trying to do a follow-up on an article glass had written about a convention of computer hackers in Bethesda, Md. - specifically, a 15-year-old who had hacked into a company called Jukt Micronics and then extorted tens of thousands of dollars not to do it again. The Forbes editors told Lane they were having trouble confirming a single fact.

Oddly enough-- an on-line reporter uncovered Glass' fraud, too. It was considered a triumph for on-line journalism, which had gotten little respect previously.

Now, this is seriously ironic:

... He even went to the trouble to create a Web site for Jukt Micronics.

“It was ostensibly a web page from Jukt Micronics, which contained this letter claiming that The New Republic had portrayed them inaccurately in their story,” says Lane.

Was the Web site convincing?

No, says Lane. “The second I looked at it, I thought, ‘This isn't a real corporate Web site.’ I mean, first of all, it was on AOL members. You know. I mean corporations that make high-tech products in Silicon Valley don't go on AOL members.”

He created a "fake web site" which was a laughably crude and primative little page, with no graphics and childishly inept layout, which basically just said "Jukt Micronics" and listed a phone number or two-- not what you'd expect a professional software company to have for a web-page.

And, uhhh, you wouldn't expect them to have a freaking web-page on the AOL members domain-- the same domain where people post pictures of their cats and troll for those who are "Married but not Dead."

Not the sort of, ahem, forgery that would fool anyone.

And, give credit to Lane-- it didn't fool him for very long at all.

Now compare Lane's skepticism at seeing this obvious hoax with Rather's, Mape's, and Howard's determination to believe at any cost.

And how did all of this end for Glass? Rather badly, of course. But then, he wasn't a big anchorman, now was he?

And with that, the journalistic career of Stephen Glass ended. He dropped out of sight and spent much of the past five years in therapy, trying to start over.

...

But then he admits that he continued to lie to them. Did he ever apologize to any of them? “This is the very beginning of a very, very long process of apologies. I didn't apologize to people. Because I was so ashamed.”

Certainly Glass could forgive them for perhaps being a little bit cynical about this apology, since he’s doing it on national television and not in person.

“I don't think that's right though, saying because I'm doing it on national television,” says Glass, even though he has a book out now about his life and hasn’t been in touch with these people for five years.

I wonder if Steve Kroft would forgive me for being cynical about Dan Rather's "apology," in which he apologized for very little of all. He apologized, basically, for Burkett's "lie" to him -- and I put that "lie" in quotes, because I'm not sure that Burkett lied to Rather and Mapes so much as he told them what they indicated they needed to hear.

Posted by: Ace at 08:54 PM | Comments (3)
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John Edwards Makes Campaign Appearance in the Swing State... New Jersey
— Ace

Yeahp. John "If I Was Invisible" Edwards was in Newark, NJ tonight.

NEWARK, N.J. - Before the 2001 terrorist attacks took the lives of her husband and more than 2,700 other victims, Kristen Breitweiser voted Republican.

Just askin'-- do we have any evidence besides the very-liberal-partisan Ms. Breitweiser's say-so for the oft-asserted claim that she used to vote Republican?

Richard Clarke also claimed to have "voted Republican" before deciding Bush was evil. That turned out to not be true at all, except in a very Clintonian sense.

Breitweiser, the media says, was a "registered Republican." But then, I'm a registered Independent, and I'm obviously not terribly Independent at all.

But the Middletown resident who helped elect President George W. Bush now believes wrong choices are being made, especially waging war with Iraq.

...

In the first visit to New Jersey by a candidate in the 2004 presidential campaign, Edwards criticized Bush's handling of the war on terror and national security issues.

...

While New Jersey was once considered a lock for the Democrats, recent polls indicate that Bush and his Democratic challenger John Kerry are in a virtual dead heat in the Garden State.

"It must mean that they are at least a little nervous," David Rohde, a political scientist from Michigan State, said referring to the Edwards visit.

...

Campaign officials would not say how much money they hoped to raise from Tuesday night's scheduled fund-raiser at the Hilton Hotel in East Brunswick.

So far, the Kerry-Edwards campaign in New Jersey has raised nearly $10 million, said Luis Vivciano, a spokesman for the campaign.

Republicans said the Edwards visit is a sign that Democrats are worried about winning New Jersey.

"I think it says a lot that Kerry has to go in and defend territory," said Kevin Madden, a spokesman for the Bush-Cheney '04 campaign.

The fund-raiser was "scheduled," although the reporter doesn't bother telling us when it was scheduled; and the reporter never says that the Newark rally was "scheduled" before recently, either.

Posted by: Ace at 08:32 PM | Comments (5)
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George Soros Launches His Own Blog
— Ace

A joke, you ask?

Not a joke.

All too real.

I guess Oliver Willis just wasn't delivering the knockout punch for him that he'd anticipated.

Karol says blogging just jumped the shark. I don't know if that's true, but all of a sudden this does seem sorta lame. It's like having your crazy pony-tailed hippie uncle force his way into the basement when you're hanging out with your friends and then keep dropping hints that he'd be game for "tokin' some kind" and suggesting to your girlfriend that she can take off her blouse if she likes, as he's "perfectly comfortable with the nude human form."

And you're like, "Get the fuck away from me or I'm telling mom, and then I'm calling your goddamned parole officer."

Posted by: Ace at 06:00 PM | Comments (13)
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Man Sought for Questioning In Connection With Threats on President's Life "Located"
— Ace

I just called the Secret Service to get additional information about Lawrence Ward:

U.S. law enforcement officials have been unable to locate an upstate New York man wanted for questioning regarding threats to President Bush.

Lawrence Ward, 49, left his Bainbridge home in central New York on Sept. 9. A photo of Mr. Bush along with the written words "Dead Man" were found in his house.

Mr. Ward has emptied his bank accounts and canceled his credit cards, said national security officials close to the case. Those actions were seen as measures to prevent authorities from tracking or finding Mr. Ward, said officials who spoke on condition of anonymity.

The Secret Service has issued a nationwide alert for information on Mr. Ward, who left his house with a hunting rifle and told a neighbor he was leaving and would not return, officials said.

It turns out he's now been "located," in the Agent's words. He wouldn't say where or when. Or by who, but I didn't think to ask him that.

You know, these guys are really suspicious. I could feel everyone I talked to sizing me up as some sort of would-be accomplice trying to find out what the Secret Service knows.

And I have to say, when you're on the phone with the Secret Service, you get kinda nervous. This guy asked me "And you want to know about this for what purpose exactly?" in that cop-like manner and I swear I almost yelled "Five-oh, five-oh!" and ducked out the fire escape.

At any rate, it looks like the Be On the Look Out can be safely cancelled.

Update: It looks like the Washinton Times, and I, were both behind this story. Ward has already been interviewed by the Secret Service-- as of last week.

I found this article in a forum linking to this site. I don't know its original provenance, as no link was provided.

Bainbridge Man Denies Threatening Bush

Kyle Clark

Sep 26, 2004, 22:29

Larry Ward, the Bainbridge man who was the subject of a nationwide manhunt by the Secret Service says he never threatened President Bush's life. Ward came under suspicion after police found threats inside his North Main Street home. They consisted of a picture of President Bush with the words "Dead Man" spraypainted over the top.

Neighbors say Ward left town 2 weeks ago, stashing a rifle in his Toyota and driving out of Bainbridge. We pick up the Larry Ward story close to three thousand miles away. Action News spoke with Ward by phone, from the home of a friend near Olympia, Washington. Larry Ward says he wasn't running, "I have a lot of adverse circumstances i New York and I just had to walk away from them for a little bit."

Following Ward cross country were Secret Service agents worried that he might be a threat to President Bush and Senator John Kerry. Ward says he never targeted the candidates, "Absolutely false. I'd like to give them a good kick in the rear but I have no intention of murdering anyone, never have. I wouldn't know how."

The Secret Service thought otherwise. An agent caught up with Ward last Thursday in Washington State.

"He said 'Can I look at your car, can I look at your gun. Why are you reading those books?'" said Ward.

Books like American Terrorist, about Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh. A book that is far less sympathetic to McVeigh than Ward is, "I would, on a jury, probably find him guilty, but I think his motives and his thought process was honorable."

Ward went so far as to call McVeigh an American hero on this CD Ward made in his Bainbridge home. But what about the threat inside the home?

Ward told Action News, "On one of my walls, I have this political statement about Bush and a few months ago I was a victim of arson at my residence and vandalism. Someone spraypainted "Dead Man" over that."

Ward says he told his story to the Secret Service and has been cleared, "They said that they have no cause to be involved upon inquiry to me but they haven't said it publically, so I still have this lynch mob saying that I'm a wife beater and a president-murderer and god knows what."

Ward says he plans to stay on the West Coast for now, and he's not sure if he'll ever return to his home in Bainbridge. Action News asked the Secret Service to confirm that they interviewed Ward. A spokesman says they can't comment on an ongoing investigation. On Wednesday of last week, a New York City TV station reported the warrant for Ward's arrest has been dropped, and the Secret Service believes vandals may be behind the writing on the wall.

Sorry for the "Exclusive" stuff. I don't know what the story is now. The Washington Times just reported he's "disappeared" but this article from a day earlier seems to indicate everyone knows where he is.

Posted by: Ace at 11:47 AM | Comments (8)
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Quake Rocks SoCal
— Ace

A magnitude of 6.0.

I'm mentioning this just in order to explain why I didn't mention this before -- or, for that matter, why I don't cover obviously important stories.

For one thing, I assume that, for most, Ace of Spades HQ remains a second or third stop at best on the information superhighway. I don't bother linking stories that I assume everyone knows about from normal LLM channels or other, bigger blogs (like Instapundit).

For another thing, I usually don't link stories I have nothing to contribute to. The slaughter in Darfur is horrific; and of course I hope for a minimum of destruction and deaths due to this earthquake. As I similarly hoped for Florida and the Gulf Coast during this savage storm season.

But I think that's pretty obvious. True, sometimes the obvious just needs to be said anyway. But I try to keep in mind that this is a political/comedy blog, and not really a one-stop source for links on breaking news.

At any rate, my best wishes to California readers and their families -- and all Californians, of course -- during this tremulous time.

Posted by: Ace at 10:52 AM | Comments (9)
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"Tough Crowd With Colin Quinn" Probably Going Off the Air -- Unless You Help Out
— Ace

CNN reports that Tough Crowd With Colin Quinn will be going on haitus in November, and its future will be determined "at that time."

That means they're cancelling it.

If you don't watch the show, it's funnier than Leno and Letterman, and you really ought to check it out. It's on 11:30PM (EST) on Comedy Central.

You might also want to know this: It's one of the most right-wing shows ever put on TV. It has a mix of liberal and conservative comics, but for once the conservatives aren't outnumbered, and Colin Quinn -- the self-styled "Total Package" -- is a strong Bush supporter, and defends Bush night after night.

The show is a little uneven, because how funny it is depends on the comics appearing that night. But when the Big Guns are in -- Nick DiPaolo, Greg Giraldo, and Da Goddess' personal favorite, Jim Norton, are on, it's usually howlingly funny.

So, look: Why not support the show by tuning in once in a while? Especially if you're a Nielsen-metered household. Conservatives have kept a couple of shows off the air; can we keep one on the air?

If you're already a fan of the show, let Comedy Central know it by writing them a little letter at this form. And if you've not yet watched it, check it out this week and then write a letter, telling them, truthfully, you've watched it and you like it.

I wouldn't mention politics or how they need a counter-balance to the left-wing and unfunny John "Cutesy-Cute" Stewart. They don't care about politics; they only care about viewers and ratings.

Quinn beats Leno and Letterman hands-down. I don't think I've watched either of those shows more than three times since "The Total Package" has been up against them. If you're up at 11:30, there are worse ways to spend half an hour.

Sorry to Be So Bossy Update: Jeepers, I've got a BOLO up at the sidebar and now I'm trying to enlist you in saving a show I like a lot. Sorry for the presumption.

But honestly, I think most of the readers here would like the show. I imagine many of you already are watching it anyway.

Posted by: Ace at 10:29 AM | Comments (10)
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And Now the Pew Poll, Too
— Ace

Eight points, and that from a poll which has tended to show, ahem, more generous levels of support for Kerry than commonly assumed.

It's getting silly.

Update: It Just Got Sillier. Jackie Stallone's psychic dogs now scent a Bush victory, too.

Her dogs show Bush with a 49-44 lead, trending well with Catholic women.

Hat tip to Rich Lowery at NRO.

Correction: Mark of Rational Explications says I've got a lot of loose shit going on with my math; the lead is 8, according to Geraghty, not 6 as I first wrote.

I could have sworn the poll was 48-42. But it's 48-40.

Update: Poll's now up.


Posted by: Ace at 09:44 AM | Comments (7)
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Shock: Producer for Rathergate Forgery Story Worked for Liberal Democrats
— Ace

No, not Mary Mapes; the other one. Josh Howard.

Certainly no "shadowy links" here!

One of the most offensive things about this whole scandal was Rather's dismissal of critics -- who were of course not only right, but obviously so -- as "partisan political operatives." That's the liberal media in a nutshell-- those who argue against the liberal media line a "partisan" and "extremist" and not to be trusted, while they happily quote left-wing sources and "experts" without noting the partisan affiliation of those sources.

So Dan Rather did the following:

-- He called Bill Burkett, a rabidly-partisan, viciously anti-Bush crank an "unimpeachable source."

-- He let hardcore feminist and liberal Mary Mapes dick around on this story for five years, and then defended her unethical behavior in putting these forgeries on the air.

-- He employed a former staffer for Chuck Schumer as a main producer on the story, while simultaneously dismissing his critics as "partisan political operatives."

The liberal media doesn't, it seem, really mind "partisan political operatives," so much as it objects to Republicans and conservatives generally.

I would like the liberal legacy media to explain why it is that half of the country is to be presumed dishonorable and dishonest for daring to express an opinion that diverges from its own.

Posted by: Ace at 09:25 AM | Comments (2)
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It's Real: New Jersey is in Play
— Ace

A FreeRepublic poster digests Rasmussen's state-by-state polls, showing Kerry with a [edited due to Rasmussen's complaint about proprietary information] small lead in the Garden State.

FreeRepublic also points me to this poll by StrategicVision (no, I've never heard of them before either) which finds that Kerry leads by a single point -- 45-44 -- among likely voters.

Now, that isn't much of a lead at all. That really is a virtual tie.

These latest polls seem to confirm previous indications of a big shift in favor of Bush. One earlier poll had the race tied; another had Bush ahead by 4. I don't believe Bush is ahead in NJ, but I do now believe the race is approximately tied.

In 1992, Peter Jennings called Bush the Elder's loss of New Jersey as "the dagger in George Bush's heart," or something very close to that. That wasn't really true at all -- NJ had been Republican a long time ago, but, by 1992, it was a true swing state and trending Democratic -- but whatever. I don't think that's liberal bias; I just think that's a guy trying to fill time on a boring election night, and saying dopey things.

But I'm hoping we'll get to see New Jersey finally get to play a genuine "dagger in the heart" role 12 years after Jennings' premature announcement of its blade-like qualities.

Update: Robert comments:

Since the Democrats held their convention in July, and the Republicans in August this allowed the Bush campaign to spend money from his war chest much longer than Kerry. Kerry had to move to the $75 million 5 weeks before Bush. Now that all of the "safe" blue states are suddenly in play, he probably can't afford to advertise in all of them. Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Michigan, even Oregon for Gods sake. Not to mention of course Florida and Ohio...

This is true, and especially true with regard to New Jersey, one of the most expensive media markets in the country. NJ doesn't really have its own TV stations (not big ones, anyway); it gets its broadcast signals from two of the priciest markets in the nation (NYC and Philly).

But I don't know if that matters. I always think that a candidate has to act as if his base is secured -- there's no point pouring money into NJ; if NJ isn't in the bag on election night, ad-blitz or not, then Kerry's going to lose. I think he has to just assume/hope that NJ is in the bag and continue putting the bulk of his resources into the so-called swing states, even if many of them seem more like Bush states than swing states at the moment.

Bush will certainly visit NJ a couple of times, though. To gin up support, to show the flag, and to announce that he's now playing on Kerry's assumed turf.

Can Bush win NJ? I really think he might. Kerry has to hope for more bad news on the economy and in Iraq/the GWOT and that such news changes the polls in NJ for free.

As if he wasn't doing that already.

Update: Gerry from Daly Thoughts says that StrategicVisions is a polling firm which has previously done most of its political work for the Republican Party, although they're now doing their own independent polls to increase their visibility. But, as he says, keep in mind the possible bias.

Gerry is also proud he's been calling New Jersey a battleground for quite some time. Big deal. Ever been to Newark?

FreeRepublic pulled the thread on the state-by-state numbers, as that's Rasmussen's proprietary (i.e., subscription only) information. So I'll be a stand-up guy and pull the numbers, too.

I'll just say that Kerry's lead right now is the same number that King Arthur was supposed to count to before releasing the Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch. Not the number he did count to, mind you; the number the Book of Armaments instructed him to count to.*

"Two" points is not the lead; neither shalt thou say that "four" points is the lead.

"Five" is right out.

* If right now you're dying to tell me he did eventually count to the number I'm talking about, you're a big freakin' dork.

Don't run from it. Own it.

Yet Another Update: Joe the Unabrewer points out that the Philly market has lots of campaign ads running, because Pennsylvania is in play. So NJ -- especially southern & western NJ -- will see lots of Kerry ads, whether Kerry makes a specific play for NJ or not.

Duh. I should have known that.

Posted by: Ace at 08:10 AM | Comments (15)
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Man Threatening Life of President Bush Disappears
— Ace

They're hunting him, but he's vanished.

Does anyone know where I can find a picture of this Lawrence Ward guy? (Don't bother with Yahoo or Google images; no dice there, at least for me.)

It could help the hunt to have his picture widely publicized in, say, oh, I don't know, blogs or something. I for one would put his mug in the sidebar.

Posted by: Ace at 08:03 AM | Comments (9)
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Kerry's Ultimate Flip-Flop on Iraq
— Ace

Real Clear Politics has a must-read article running in FrontPage Magazine.

Why is it that Kerry was prepared to act unilaterally against Saddam under a Democratic President but not under a Republican?

It appears that the Crossfire "quote" published first in the Washington Times and then linked here wasn't quite authentic. But, ironically enough, it was accurate; Kerry didn't use the precise words earlier attributed to him, but he argued both on Crossfire and on the Senate floor that ultimately Saddam would have to be brought to account, whether with our scary-important allies or without them.

Posted by: Ace at 07:58 AM | Comments (2)
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September 27, 2004

CNN Headline, And I Quote: "Bush apparently leads Kerry in pre-debate poll"
— Ace

Emphasis mine.

The CNN/USAT/Gallup poll shows Bush ahead by 8 with likelies and, oddly enough, ahead by 11 with registered voters. (The ABCNews/WaPo poll also finds Bush doing better with RVs, so maybe this is a real thing going on here.)

CNN's headline: Bush is apparently ahead.

"Apparently"?

He's on the very edge of the margin of error. The MoE is +/- 4 for either candidate; but that doesn't mean that a 8 point lead is meaningless-- far from it. It is pretty unlikely these men are tied at the moment; furthermore, Kerry can't be ahead, unless this is one of those 1-in-20 polls that is simply unreflective of the greater population.

With the ABCNews/WaPo poll confirming the general picture -- Bush ahead, and significantly so -- the "1-in-20 polls are garbage" theory would seem to be weak.

Does CNN typically say that one candidate is "apparently" ahead by a whopping 8 points (more with registered voters), or do they only do that when the wrong candidate is "apparently" ahead?

Ace of Spades HQ Headline:

Panicked CNN Liberals Apparently Still Believe They Can and Should Cocoon Their Audience

Hey, look, I only said apparently.

Ace of Spades HQ Future Headlines (provided to me by my friend, the time-travelling bologna sandwich called Johnny Coldcuts):

Bush Apparently Wins Re-Election

Apparently Takes 325 Electoral Votes; Apparently Nets 55% of Vote in Reagan-Like Avalanche

Will Take Second Oath of Office in January, Apparently

Judy Woodruff Apparently Suffering From Clinical Depression; Will Apparently Spend a Few Weeks at the Hazelton Clinic

Posted by: Ace at 05:51 PM | Comments (25)
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The Left Still Loves Its "Romantic" Totalitarian Killers
— Ace

...but at least there's the occasional non-leftist liberal to tell them to grow the fuck up already.

Paul Berman bitchslaps Robert Redford for the disgusting haigiography to Che Guevera he produced.

And he wants to know when the Che-lovin' Hollywood community will get around to making a movie about one of Che's many victims.

So Stupid It Hurts My Teeth Update: Travelling Shoes highlights a just-plain-brilliant idea from the Daily Kos on how Kerry can win Pennsylvania:

The question is, will John Kerry speak out and call for the release of [convicted cop-killer Abu-Jamal] Mumia, or at the very least demand a new trial for him?

No, "Kos." The question is, have you been mixing medications, or are you just plain fucking retarded?

But let me answer your question, dearheart. Will John Kerry call for the release of a convicted cop-killer? How about: Will John Kerry even allow the words "Abu-Jamal Mumia" to pass his lips?

Um, no.

Good Lord All Mighty. This is what passes for reasonable thought among the biggest of the big left-wing bloggers.

For the love of all that's holy, you don't hear me calling for the release of, I don't know, Bucephalus "Stony" Herkemer, three-time race-murderer and leader of the White Power Militia gang.*

*Although, to be fair, Mr. Corrigan also claims to be a "political prisoner." He claims that ZOG (the Zionist Occupational Goverment) is frustrating his attempts to begin the RaHoWa (racial holy war) which will "cleanse" the country of "undesirables."

Now that I think about it-- when will President Bush call for the release of this poor man? I think doing so might really help him in Oregon.

Posted by: Ace at 05:32 PM | Comments (9)
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Kerry Coins a Brilliant New Word: "Misleadisments"
— Ace

Remember, we have to elect John Forbes Kerry because he's so much smarter than Bush. W is for wrong, now "misleadisments" -- Jonathan Swift has nothing on this guy.

Kerry is whining yet again, this time about advertisments. Apparently Bush's work and his don't, or else he wouldn't be making this cynical call to pull them off the air.

Well, there's that, and the fact that liberal 527's would continue to put out ads. Meaning that while Kerry's and Bush's ads might be off the air, there would be a lot of advertising remaining -- 90% of it liberal, from The Media Fund and MoveOn.org.

How fucking transparent is that ploy?

Anyway:

SPRING GREEN, United States (AFP) - Democratic presidential challenger John Kerry appealed for an end to the TV advertising war that has marked his election battle against President George W. Bush.

Kerry said the avalanche of negative television spots and attacks being shown on US screens was scaring off voters.

"Americans need a real conversation over our future," Kerry said in a speech at a school in Spring Green, Wisconsin.

"What they don't need is all these trumped up advertisements, they just make people curl up and walk away," added the Massachusetts senator.

"I'm calling them 'misleadisments,'" Kerry said of the adverts. "It's all scare tactics ... because (Bush) has no record to run on."

I'm calling the "misleadisments."

He seems terribly proud of that.

I'm calling this election a "misleadisblowout."

Posted by: Ace at 01:25 PM | Comments (24)
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