Posted: 13 Aug 2008 01:03 PM CDT
Blackmail? Elitist? These words used in association with Barack Obama? The best part is that it is Democratic supporters saying it.
Rocky Mountain News is reporting that Obama tickets come with a catch this year. The catch is that people that wanted to hear Obama's speech on the last night of the convention, which will be given at the Invesco Field at Mile High in Colorado, must "volunteer" to spend at least 6 hours working for the campaign.
Democratic supporters are complaining and calling Barack Obama campaign conditions to hear Obama's speech at the convention "elitist" and saying it equals "blackmail".
This has some people angered with one man saying he was told he would need to do 12 hours of phone work or canvassing in order to obtain the two tickets he wanted to the event.
When asked if he would be willing to do the work he replied, "hell no" and said those types of conditions were "blackmail".
A working mother from Centennial by the name of Heather Kreider, expressed her anger and frustration to the Rocky Mountain News, saying that "Democrats need to act like Democrats" and going further to explain her anger by stating, "Democrats work for a living, and they have to work and take care of their families. And they say these are open to those in the community, so they shouldn't ask people to drop everything in their lives for this."
Kreider claims these conditions are elitist and not fair and says the Democrats need to practice what they preach.
Still, Kreider got a message telling her that she had to do six hours of volunteer work by Friday if she wanted a chance at a ticket. Kreider said she will not do the work.
To make matters worse, it is reported that the telephone recording also makes it clear that satisfying the work requirement still does not guarantee someone to be eligible for a ticket.
A spokesman for the Obama campaign, Matt Chandler, claims that there is a box to check on the applications asking if someone would be willing to volunteer and he asserts that only people that checked that option were asked to volunteer.
Kreider maintains that she did not hit the volunteer option on the application.
Chandler also insists that people can still obtain tickets by becoming credentialed saying the majority of people that are credentialed will not have to do any volunteer work.
That also is in dispute with a previous reports that stated "Nearly 60,000 members of the public could receive the "community credentials" that carry the price of activism between the convention and the November election", according to The Denver Post.
Looks like more and more people are starting to open their eyes and see Obama for what he really is.
An elitist, socialistic communist.
Posted: 13 Aug 2008 11:25 AM CDT
Via Vets For Freedom email:
Dear Vets for Freedom Members:
Posted: 13 Aug 2008 11:02 AM CDT
There were 500 no-shows when Michael Phelps won his third gold medal for the swimming event, empty seats also when he won his fourth gold the next day.
Any number of reasons can explain what is happening in Beijing, China, for the Olympics, but the bottom line is, they are having to bus in state-trained "cheer squads" to help fill up the seats of the Olympic Park.
The U.S. softball team played in a stadium only about 30 percent full on Tuesday, while the day before, 10 of 18 venues did not reach 80 percent capacity.
Many reasons are being speculated on and offered by officials and observers, such as reserved tickets are not being used and people are waiting for the finals, or the tickets that were provided to employees of state-run enterprises decided it was not worth the trouble to attend, or the weather.
Others think that strict visa restrictions have kept some foreign ticket holders away but the problem isn't just with the stadium seats, but hotels and tourist sites all across Beijing are reporting lower that normal attendance for the month of August.
"Business is worse than at this time last year," said a receptionist at a 22-room hotel in Beijing's Chongwen district, where rooms cost $28 a night. "It's the season for traveling and last year the hotel was full. The Olympics should have brought business to Beijing, but the reality is too far from the expectation."
The report says that Chinese organizers that expected a far better attendance level were "blindsided".
The "cheer squads" are sent in shifts according to Wang Li, who is a 30 year-old working for an automobile manufacturer in Beijing, who says, "Today, 50 workers came to do the cheerleading job. Our company sends us to softball today, but other workers were sent to other venues to do some work. We come here on shifts."
She goes on to tell how they are coached in how to cheer properly saying they are taught to say, ""Olympics, Go, Go, Go! China, Go, Go, Go! Beijing, Go, Go, Go!"
Volunteers are brought in to cheer for each side to provide a "good atmosphere"
The International Olympic Committee has gone as far as to ask China to publicly address the issue, with Kevan Gosper, vice chairman of the IOC's coordination commission for Beijing, saying, "We've been saying, 'You're missing a great opportunity to get more of your people in here to celebrate your games.' I would want to stress how important it is for the host city that the venues are seen to be full and everybody has the opportunity to enjoy the festivities."
China kept scores tickets to offer people for free, many of which are not being used now and organizers that wanted those tickets originally are upset, such as Wu Qifa, who is a senior digital design engineer, who expressed how frustrated and annoyed she was when she saw the number of empty seats because she had gone to great lengths to obtain them.
Wu states, "When we wanted tickets, we couldn't buy them. My colleagues tried to buy online but were out of luck. I tried to line up to buy tickets but it was so impossibly crowded. . . . I think that some tickets for foreign countries are not sold out. Or some people who bought the tickets, but could not enter China."
Problems have plagued these Olympics with many saying the International Olympic Committee made the wrong call and criticizing them for slating the Summer Olympics to be held in China and recent stories only give them more reason to do so.
Journalists alleging police brutality while covering a demonstration of students for a Free Tibet, with the British journalist claiming that he was knocked to the ground and thrown in a van and questioned, to young girls being switched out being one girls voice was beautiful but Chinese officials didn't think her face was pretty enough so the world saw one face and heard a different girl's voice and even a story of an American citizen killed in an attack in Beijing on August 9, 2008.
Problems have plagued these Olympics with the lack of attendance just being latest reported on and no one knows what other problems will be reported from those that did attend when all is said and done and people have gone to their respective homes.
Posted: 13 Aug 2008 03:53 AM CDT
It's 1955. We're at 45th and Broadway, in the heart of the old Times Square. It's a chilly Spring evening; women are still bundled up in their furs, men still wearing their overcoats. We're standing under the great marquee of the venerable old Astor Theater (long gone now), watching a tall skinny young usher, all dressed up like an admiral, marching back and forth under the bright neon lights, spouting off his repetitive spiel to the endless throngs of cold, disinterested passersby:
"Step right this way, folks! Immediate seating in the balcony! Tonight we have 'East of Eden', with James Dean, Julie Harris and Raymond Massey! Next show begins in fifteen minutes!"
That's me. The eighteen-year old version. Living the big life in the Big Apple, and doing my best to live up to those stringent requirements for becoming a full-fledged, legitimate Bohemian (that "free-thinking, anti-establishment" movement that came onto the scene a generation before those infinitely more numerous and infamous Hippies).
I was already breaking one of the cardinal rules by working. But you have to eat and pay the rent so you compromise a little. With the exception of those evenings at the Astor, however, the rest of my life was pure unadulterated Bohemian. I was a struggling young art student, living in Greenwich Village in the 1950s. My girlfriend, also an art student, although somewhat less struggling, was the pretty, blond eighteen-year old daughter of a Brazilian embassy official. On those nights when I didn't have to work at the Astor, we'd visit one of the local coffeehouses or bars, and spend the night engaged in long, passionate discussions with our friends about -- art, or religion, or something like that.
I shared a cramped second floor "studio" on Grove Street with my best buddy, a fellow artist and boxer who earned his money sparring at Stillman's Gym. All of my friends were (to one degree or another) artists, writers, poets, musicians, or just plain Bohemians. During all this, I was, although I certainly didn't appreciate it at the time, involved in the subliminal process of constructing a persona, a persona that would, barring a few adjustments, and sometimes lengthy, inadvertent interruptions, last almost a lifetime. Almost.
On those rare occasions when I actually voted, I of course voted Democratic. If you had asked me why I considered myself a Democrat I would have probably answered something to the effect that the Democrats were the "party of the people", that they were caring and tolerant and "had concern for the little guy". And most importantly, though I probably wouldn't have admitted it at the time, that they were the polar opposite of the Republicans who were, to me, the corporate embodiment of my stern, materialistic Main Line stockbroker father -- against whom I would spend the greater part of a lifetime in unnecessary and self-destructive rebellion.
It's 2001. I'm sleeping late, the phone ringing wakes me up. It's my son Geoff, from North Carolina. Geoff is a former Army Ranger, fought in Desert Storm, he seldom gets rattled. He sounded rattled. "Dad!" He said. "Turn on the TV. Some crazy bastard just crashed into the World Trade Center!" I turned on CNN. We watched CNN together, he in North Carolina, me in Massachusetts. We hardly spoke. We just listened to the TV. Then, "Jesus Christ!" He said.
Both towers! All those people! Who did it? And why? Are we at war? Who are we at war with? Who the hell is Osama bin Laden? And who are these fanatical Muslims? What the hell does Islam have to do with the World Trade Center? And, most frightening of all, what's going to happen next?
What happened next was the Pentagon.
Immediately following the attacks on New York City, the Peace Protesters were out in force, filing into Manhattan's parks and squares with their obligatory candles and guitars, singing for Peace, and intimating, through their homemade signs and baleful comments that somehow we, the United States, through our purported self-interested imperialist aggressions, had brought all this on ourselves. These inflammatory pronouncements of course generated loud, angry counter-protests from some offended citizens among the surrounding crowd.
The painful debate had begun. Like some catastrophic earthquake, the horrific events of that awful day generated a gigantic fault line that stretched across the entire continent, dividing one half of our nation from the other by a seemingly unbridgeable gulf.
It's 2008. Where are we now? Still divided, still conflicted, a nation torn asunder, struggling to find its identity. And where am I now? Who am I now? This old reconstructed Greenwich Village liberal? What's happened? How did I change so much? How did I become this angry old right-winger? this indefatigable alarmist? this anti-Islamist warmonger? Was it those buildings coming down? Was it all of those people jumping out of those windows? Was it reading the Koran? Am I getting wiser with old age, or am I just getting harder? Did America change? Or was it just me?
That old Times Square is long gone now. All of those things are gone now. All gone.
Sometimes late at night when I'm lying alone in the darkness they come back, those ghosts of Times Square. That great glowing neon marquee, the venerable old Astor, our doomed hero James Dean and my pretty blond girlfriend, and all of those good friends and all of those long, passionate discussions, and that tall skinny young usher, all dressed up like an admiral, marching back and forth under the bright neon lights, spouting off his repetitive spiel to the endless throngs of cold, disinterested passersby:
"Step right this way, folks! Immediate seating in the balcony! Tonight we have -- "
What do we have tonight, folks? What will we have tomorrow? What, I wonder, would James Dean have to say about all this?
Cross posted from Radarsite
Posted: 12 Aug 2008 08:52 PM CDT
Written by Cassy Fiano
I wonder if the CPUSA gets a little tingle running up their legs, too. They're endorsing the Obamamessiah for President -- shocker -- even though he isn't quite the perfect little Communist:
Barack Obama is not a left candidate. This fact has seemingly surprised a number of progressive people who are bemoaning Obama's "shift to the center." (Right-wingers are happy to join them, suggesting Obama is a "flip-flopper.") It's sad that some who seek progressive change are missing the forest for the trees. But they will not dampen the wide and deep enthusiasm for blocking a third Bush term represented by John McCain, or for bringing Obama by a landslide into the White House with a large Democratic congressional majority.
Yes, let's keep our eyes on the prize. We'll have gulags and totalitarianism in no time, my dear comrades. Just keep votin' the lefties into office.
Liberals will read this and immediately start screaming shrilly about how it's right-wing FASCISTS!!!!!!! (their favorite insult ever, by the way) who actually advocate these things. But let's keep in mind that the Communists are trying to get us away from the right wingers. Just get away from the right wing and the government will take care of everything in your life for you, and we'll have wonderful income redistribution, and capitalism will be abolished, and if you think it's not the best thing since Disneyworld and sliced bread, well, you'll see things our way eventually, and if not... well, we can take care of that.
Exit question: how many Americans see an endorsement from the Communist Party as a positive?
Hat Tip: Little Green Footballs
Posted: 12 Aug 2008 08:22 PM CDT
Voight wrote an opinion editorial for The Washington Times, in which he admits that during the Vietnam era he was caught up in the "hysteria" which was brought about by what he calls the "Marxist propaganda underlying the so-called peace movement."
Jon Voight is an Academy Award-winning actor who is well-known for his humanitarian work and as estranged father of Angelina Jolie. Voight has just joined a short list of celebrities that has publicly come out against Barack Obama.
Voight says that Obama is sowing socialist seeds in young people and points out that people are affected by those that teach them when they are young.
Sen. Barack Obama has grown up with the teaching of very angry, militant white and black people: the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Louis Farrakhan, William Ayers and Rev. Michael Pfleger. We cannot say we are not affected by teachers who are militant and angry. We know too well that we become like them, and Mr. Obama will run this country in their mindset.
Voight claims that Democrats have worked a "propaganda campaign with subliminal messages, creating a God-like figure in a man who falls short in every way", as he goes on to explain why he feels as he does.
He goes on to call John McCain great and an American legend and he says there is not a cell in his body that can accept "the idea that Mr. Obama can keep us safe from the terrorists around the world."
This is a perilous time, and more than ever, the world needs a united and strong America. If, God forbid, we live to see Mr. Obama president, we will live through a socialist era that America has not seen before, and our country will be weakened in every way.
His criticisms against Obama has ignited a firestorm among liberal blogs, that The Politico describes as going "ballistic", to which many rarely see when celebrities come out on behalf of Obama.
Jeffrey Wells, who runs the movie and pop culture website Hollywood-Elsewhere.com, suggested what many are interpreting as "blacklisting" Voight because of his criticisms about Obama in the opinion editorial.
Wells writes "[Voight is] obviously entitled to say and write whatever he wants. But it's only natural that industry-based Obama supporters will henceforth regard him askance. Honestly? If I were a producer and I had to make a casting decision about hiring Voight or some older actor who hadn't pissed me off with an idiotic Washington Times op-ed piece, I might very well say to myself, 'Voight? Let him eat cake.'"
Voight responds, via The Politico by stating, "It's out of line to insinuate that we should blacklist people for speaking their minds. It's a strange thing when people in this country can't express their opinions without being attacked." He then points out that liberals often speak out about political issues and that, "it's an important time for people on the conservative side to speak out."
Voight's daughter, Jolie, has stated that she has not yet decided who she will be supporting or voting for.
Voight has just joined the list of actors, celebrities and Hollywood types that are known conservatives or Republicans.
Posted: 12 Aug 2008 09:17 PM CDT
That was only part of Joseph Lieberman's statement to the crowd that greeted the Straight Talk Express in a hangar-like hall, where a large crowd awaited John McCain, to the tune of Rocky.
While introducing John McCain at a campaign event in Pennsylvania, Joseph Lieberman said "John McCain, who has always put the country first, worked across party lines to get things done, and one candidate who has not."
Joseph Lieberman is a former Democrat that is now a sitting Independent Senator from Connecticut and has formally endorsed John McCain. Lieberman caucuses with the Democrats almost all domestic issues but votes with Republicans on the majority of national security issues.
Video of Lieberman's remarks at YouTube here and shown below:
More of Lieberman's statement was sent out by the McCain campaign, via email: (this portion starts at approximately the 2 minute mark in the video above)
"I think it's 84 days from now that the people of America are going to choose their next president. And it's a big choice, because we know these are tough times at home economically, and dangerous times in the world. And in my opinion, the choice could not be more clear; between one candidate, John McCain, who has experience and has been tested in war and tried in peace, and another candidate that has not. Between one candidate, John McCain, who has always put his country first, worked across party lines to get things done, and one candidate that has not. Between one candidate that's a talker and one candidate who's the leader America needs as our next president. You never know -- we never know what crisis will occur in the four years of his watch; we've just seen over the last few days, as the Russians invaded a sovereign nation, Georgia. And watch the response of this man, John McCain, to that crisis: right, strong, clear, principled. The kind of president we need in the White House over the next four years, to protect our country, our security, and our freedom ..."
The portion that has many on the left side of the blogosphere criticizing Joseph Lieberman and claiming he is "smearing" Barack Obama is where he said, "Between one candidate, John McCain, who has always put his country first, worked across party lines to get things done, and one candidate that has not."
Some across the web are pointing out that he could have been speaking to the history that McCain has of reaching across the aisle which was part of that particular sentence, but Obama supporters as well as media blogs are using the "put his country first" remark in their headlines and focusing on that.
Lieberman finished his speech, but part of his introduction had him saying saying "It's great to be here with Rocky McCain", and when McCain took the stage he went on to speak to the crowd telling them about his recent phone conversations with the president of Georgia, whom he has known for years and calls "Misha" Saakashvili, telling the president that McCain's and America's support is with him by saying "today we are all Georgians".
Despite Obama supporters howling at the moon over Lieberman's words, they are not a smear, a smear is a lie and it is totally truthful and appropriate to put out that McCain has been tried and true in his support for America, in his patriotism and in his efforts to reach across the aisle and work with Democrats..... Obama has not.
Lieberman is spot on and the reactions from the Obamabots and Obama bloggers, shows exactly how much truth is in Lieberman's comment.
Posted: 12 Aug 2008 06:24 PM CDT
Debra Bartoshevich gave a public interview where she announced that she would support John McCain rather than Barack Obama. The Wisconsin Democratic Party wasted no time in voting to strip her delegate status and ban her from the Democratic convention.
Recently a Wisconsin Clinton delegate was stripped of her status for stating that she might vote for John McCain. Taking a page out of the Wisconsin Democratic Party's playbook, the Colorado Democratic Party is now threatening another Clinton Delegate.
Today it is being reported that the Colorado Democratic Party is threatening one of their Clinton national delegates, Sacha Millstone of Boulder, Colorado, for making statements critical of Barack Obama.
The Colorado Democratic Party alleges that Millstone made "disparaging public remarks" about Obama but Millstone asserts that her remarks were not public, they were made to a fellow delegate, in a supposed private e-mail exchange.
Her remark to the fellow delegate was that she was not sure whether she would vote for Barack Obama at the Democratic National Convention.
After that email exchange, that fellow delegate filed a complaint with the Colorado Democratic Party suggesting that she be stripped of her national delegate status.
That led to William Compton who is the political director of Colorado's Democratic Party. to email Millstone saying, "You are directed to come in to the party headquarters and explain your comments and why you should remain a national delegate ..."
Millstone says she sees this as a threat, stating, "I think that one of the reasons I got this letter was to intimidate me. It sounded very totalitarian. I thought it sounded undemocratic and I was completely shocked." She continues on to say, "Having conversations on the pros and cons of those candidates, I don't think this is an unusual thing at all in the Democratic Party."
The chair of the Colorado Democratic Party, Pat Waak, claims that when a complaint is issued, they are required to hear the complaint and decide whether it should be brought to the rules committee.
When Waak was asked if private correspondence can be used to investigate complaints, her response was, "We have used documents, memos, other things in the past where complaints have been filed. We have used whatever comes to us. That does not mean it goes to the rules committee."
Waak concludes by saying that as far as they are concerned the situation with Millstone is over.
Millstone "firmly" believes the email to her was a direct message to Clinton delegates throughout the nation warning them not to criticize Barack Obama if they wish to keep their national delegate status and attend the Democratic convention in August.
Millstone has the last word by saying "I think that it was calculated to have an impact on other delegates and I think this kind of communication does have a very chilling impact on other delegates because people become afraid to speak up. They become afraid to say what they think."
She concludes the interview with "You can't get unity by telling people to shut up."
Posted: 12 Aug 2008 01:41 PM CDT
The blog for Congressional Quarterly published a piece yesterday showing similarities between certain phrases and historical facts that John McCain listed in his public statements regarding the ongoing Geogia-Russia conflict that is raging, questioning whether McCain, via his speechwriters, plagiarized portions of entries from the popular information site Wikipedia.
Yesterday CQ showed similarities between John McCain's statement regarding the Georgia-Russian conflict, and historical facts published at the information site, Wikipedia. Today the campaign offers an internal memo from speechwriter to rebut that claim.
They offer a third instance but admit that those similarities are not as pronounced as the ones listed above.
After that piece was published the McCain campaign provided The Politico with an internal email from McCain's top speechwriter Mark Salter, where he laid out the directives from the candidate as to what he wanted in his statement for Salter to write up for him.
In that internal email that was written Sunday afternoon, before the CQ piece was published, it said, "Jsm just called. He would like to explain a little georgian history. Old nation. Absorbed into ussr. Independent after cold war. Plagued by corruption. Then rose revolution. President us educated."
Then, Salter added, McCain wanted to explain why the issue is important. "Intimidating and laying marker for others in near abroad like ukraine. Pipeline etc. Then get into his recommendations."
This leaves a few questions.
Was Wikipedia one of the information sites that Salter referenced in obtaining the information that McCain wanted in his speech?
According to McCain aides "there are only so many ways to state basic historical facts and dates and that any similarities to Wikipedia were only coincidental".
They did not deny that Wikipedia was one of the sites referenced.
Is consulting Wikipedia, or Britannica or any other informative sites to obtain facts that writers use for articles, speeches, blog posts or any other type of communication, considered plagiarism if the information is used but reworded to match the writer's style?
One might also wonder if every single word uttered from the campaign trail is written by speechwriters or do the candidates ever just speak off the cuff?
Last but not least, if Wikipedia was referenced, are there not far more informative sites that could be used, that do not have controversy surrounding them on whether their information is factual?
Disclaimer- As a writer, I myself have used Wikipedia as a reference, but many, like me, often verify the information from another source. For myself that is Britannica with a premium membership, I verify, then link to the Wikipedia piece, if it is factual, because those without memberships cannot get the full Britannica entry.
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