Posted: 02 Sep 2008 12:36 PM CDT
Gustav made landfall yesterday and surprised many by not doing as much damage as some expected.
While the U.S. Gulf states clean up the mess that Gustav has left behind, the National Hurricane Center is staying busy keeping their eyes on Tropical Storms Hanna, Ike and Josephine.
Next on the list is tropical storm Hanna who as of the latest advisory from the National Hurricane Center, is the tenth tropical storm of the season in the Eastern Atlantic, which is raining heavily on Southeastern Bahamas and Hispaniola.
Tropical storm warnings have been issued for Northern coast of Haiti from Le Mole St. Nicholas eastward to the northern border with the Dominican Republic. A tropical storm warning has means tropical storm conditions are expected within the warning area within the next 24 hours.
From there the projected path can be seen in the graph below.
Computer models project the paths of storms so changes are made until the last minute but they do give authorities time to issue warnings and take steps to prepare for a potential hit.
Behind Hanna is Tropical Storm IKE.
The latest advisory on IKE, which is continuously update, shows that IKE has strengthened a little over the Central Atlantic and located East of the Leeward Islands, moving West at approximately 18 miles per hour.
IKE is forecasted to gradually strengthen with the possibility of reaching hurricane strength by Wednesday.
Next on the list is Tropical Storm Josephine.
The latest advisory on Josephine from the National Hurricane Center, shows that Josephine is approximately 125 miles South-Southwest of the Southernmost Cape Verde Islands.
Josephine is moving west at about 15 miles per hour and the project path indicates it will pass South of the Cape Verde Islands today and tonight and be in open water in the Eastern Tropical Atlantic on Wednesday and Thursday. According to the National Hurricane Center Josephine could reach hurricane strength by Wednesday or Thursday as well.
To keep up with updated projections of where these storms are heading, you can access each set of advisories as well as 3 day and 5 day projected paths at the National Hurricane Center.
Posted: 02 Sep 2008 09:12 AM CDT
The sheer ridiculous of the speculation, rumors and outright lies being told by pundits across the web with no regard to actual research is amazing in it's scope.
What is does vetting entail for a vice presidential candidate such as Sarah Palin?
With Barack Obama's vetting process, it was apparent by his high profile team that was sent to speak to people on the Hill as word leaked time and time again, with John McCain the process was a little more discreet.
The man who was in charge of the vetting process for the McCain campaign was a lawyer by the name of Arthur B. Culvahouse Jr.
After being impressed with Sarah Palin after a one-on-one talk with her back in February at the National Governors Association meeting as reported by The Washington Post, John McCain had her name was added to a list of many, including the high profile candidates such as Mitt Romney, Tom Ridge, Tim Pawlenty and Joseph Lieberman.
The process stayed discreet until after John McCain had officially announced her as his running mate last Friday and since then speculation about the "vetting" process has been running wild.
The Washington Times details the process used by Culvahouse on behalf of John McCain and his campaign.
With the news that the McCain campaign has sent operatives and lawyers to Alaska a day before McCain announced her as his running mate, came more speculation asking if the McCain campaign was only now getting around to vetting Sarah Palin, with a senior adviser for the McCain campaign Steve Schmidt saying that a "jump team" was always scheduled to go to the eventual running mate's home town after the choice had been officially made "to work with the nominee's staff, help with information requests from local and national reporters, and answer questions about documents that were part of the review."
It all started with a list of potential candidates under consideration, which included Palin's name. From there approximately 25 people were tasked with the responsibility to pour through public records, public speeches and her stands on policy issues to identify any trouble spots she may have.
Culvahouse tells the Associated Press that as with the other possible VP choices, Palin's public speeches,financial records, tax information, litigation, investigations, ethical charges, as well as marriages and divorces were all scoured through.
For Palin specifically, the team studied online archives of the state's largest newspapers, including the Anchorage Daily News, but didn't request paper archives for Palin's hometown newspaper for fear the secret review would become public.
That public search produced information about the investigation in the dismissal of Alaska's public safety commissioner, who alleges he was dismissed for not firing Palin's brother-in-law, which has been come to be known as "troopergate" across the web.
A 40 page report, per candidate, was then put together and given to John McCain, Schmidt, campaign manager Rick Davis, and top advisers Mark Salter and Charlie Black. to go through.
The follow-up, according Culvahouse, included sending Palin a 70 page "intrusive" questionnaire asking for personal data and she was asked to submit federal and state tax returns for a number of previous years.
Throughout the vetting process, Rick Davis, had multiple conversations with Palin and then it was time for Culvahouse to speak in-depth to Palin, which it is believed by some to have been done via a tip to Alaska, which ended up being tipped to a blogger who writes for Wizbang, who reported that Culvahouse was spotted in Juneau, Alaska, back in May.
Culvahouse conducted a three-hour interview with Palin, where she informed him of her daughters pregnancy, which he says was the first thing she volunteered, and she made mention of her husband Todd's DUI arrest in 1986.
Culvahouse also asked Palin follow up questions on the "troopergate" issue and then spent hours with her lawyer going over the details.
Among the findings from the public search of records on Palin, the Mccain campaign did find one more detail about Palin that has not been disclosed and spoken about endlessly in the media, blogs, forums and other outlets across the web, but it may be a deal breaker for some.
Palin had once received a citation for fishing without a license.
Oh the humanity!!!!!!!
That's it, throw her under the bus.
Posted: 02 Sep 2008 04:32 AM CDT
Ladies and Gentlemen, it has been almost two months since I posted anything of my own. Those who know me know I'm currently in a round of studies which are, quite literally, kicking my behind. I will be in these studies until the culmination--a major exam September 27, 2008.
That being said, I may have been sitting on the sidelines but I haven't been ignoring what's going on in the ring.
Frankly, I am appalled at the behavior of the general population. I'm even more appalled at the behavior of the media, in all its forms. For several reasons.
First, why have we come to expect such obnoxious behavior as that of Michael Moore and his ilk as common place? Why do we just roll our eyes and go on our way when we hear any of the drivel coming out of their mouths? When did it become acceptable to let their filth stand unchallenged--and unprosecuted? Who says we have to listen to the filth spewing forth and why aren't people like him being run out of towns on a rail?
Why? Because the fringe groups have tapped into all that guilt about not allowing people their First Amendment rights. Well, guess what. Those rights go both ways. Sure they are entitled to show themselves to be the idiots they are. We are entitled to not have to listen to them if we do not wish to.
Michael Moore thought it would be funny to make a comment regarding Hurricane Gustav--and project how God must be on the DNC's side because the expected landfall date was the start of the RNC Convention. Never mind people's lives were in danger. Never mind Michael Moore doesn't believe in God. Never mind the absolute offensiveness of these words coming from the mouth of a man who never said no to anything remotely edible (and probably quite a bit not considered edible). He thought Gustav was a wonderful joke.
And apparently former DNC Chair Dan Fowler thought the same. Actually laughing about a disaster set to hit an area still recovering from Katrina and Rita. Isn't that a lovely joke? Of course, when caught by some astute person on the plane he was traveling on, he immediately backpedaled, blaming the VRWC for his actions. And his apology?
Here it is:
"If this offended anybody, I personally apologize," Fowler told ABC News. "It was a mistake, and it was a satirical statement made in jest. And one that I clearly don't believe."Followed by this:
"I believe in a benevolent God," said Fowler. "I'm a religious person. It was a facetious statement, some might even say satirical, play off of what Falwell said."
That's an apology? I don't think so. It's the ramblings of a sick, twisted individual who, as an embodiment of what the DNC has become, can't take responsibility for his own words or actions.
Michael Moore has yet to apologize for his nonsense; in fact he's expanded on it.
I was just thinking that, uh, this Gustav is proof that there is a God in Heaven — that it would actually be on its way to New Orleans on Day One of the Republican Convention in the Twin Cities at the top of the Mississippi River.
Followed by this from his website [An Open Letter to God]:
These are sick people folks. But it gets better
Since the announcement of Governor Sarah Palin as the VP running mate with John McCain, the press, and indeed the entire country, has decided it's open season on her family, particularly her children.
It's been tradition children are untouched during campaigns. Apparently not if they are the children of the first female GOP VP pick. Then it's open season.
First, KOS started things off saying the Palins' youngest child was actually their grandchild. They had no proof of this, just seemed like something to say. The Palins shot back by exposing their oldest daughter Bristol is indeed 5 months pregnant and she and her boyfriend plan to 1) keep the child and 2) marry.
Let the howling begin.
Gov. Palin did the unthinkable and *GASP* allowed her baby to live, fully knowing he would be a Down's Syndrome child. This was her first mistake, according to the insane asylum refugees. She should have killed him in accordance with their views. To allow him to live is just wrong in their eyes. And oh, yeah--Trig had to be her daughter's child because Sarah never really "looked" that pregnant and didn't make all kinds of announcements. She actually did something most politicos find foreign--she did her job.
Then, horrors, it's come out she flew to Dallas, made a speech and flew back to Alaska one month prior to her due date. She developed an amniotic leak and by all accounts was in constant contact with her doctor. Her doctor--who was well apprised of the situation and more than likely had properly prepared delivery facilities to meet both Sarah's and her child's needs--before, during and after delivery. Sarah was not in labor. She was, understandably, in a hurry to get back to Alaska, and the doctors who were familiar with her case. BTW, Down's Syndrome occurs at conception--there is nothing after conception which "causes" Down's Syndrome. And, it occurs in older women ALMOST exclusively due to the age of the ova.
Alan Colmes of Hannity and Colmes fame decided he was going to take his shot and accused Sarah of causing Trig's Down Syndrome by her irresponsible plane trip after her "water broke" and "she went into labor" rather than staying in the hospital in Texas. Never mind she wasn't in labor, she was in constant contact with her personal physician and her water didn't BREAK, it was a leak.
THEN Sarah commits the horrible crime of returning to work 3 days after she gave birth. That's just the ultimate crime. Never mind this woman is responsible for running a state government. Never mind she is probably in better physical shape than about 90% of the general population. Never mind each individual woman is different in their recovery time. Never mind all that, she's committed the unpardonable sin of returning to work after 3 days. From all accounts, Trig goes with her to work. She doesn't rely on nannies to take care of her child.
Let's twist this a little more--some are even obliquely accusing Mr. Palin of being the father of Trig--with his daughter Bristol. Oh yeah, they went there.
The filth coming out today, greeting the news from the Palins that Bristol was indeed pregnant was absolutely unconscionable. Here are a few quotes from comment threads I've been helping monitor:
I think I will let the Christian Bible say it best:
BettyBowers4Prez on September 1st, 2008 6:50 pmThen there was this gem:
Jesse on September 1st, 2008 6:10 pmAnd this:
Posted: 02 Sep 2008 12:47 AM CDT
My best friends have two kids. A bright and endlessly energized little boy, named after yours truly -- and therefore destined to have the unfortunate and slightly demeaning moniker of Little Roger for probably as long as I am still around; and a beautiful little girl named Sophie, for whom this story is named. Sophie is a precocious and unexpectedly articulate, perhaps even loquacious eleven-year old: It has become virtually impossible to talk over Sophie's head or to attempt to disguise a supposedly adult conversation behind erudite words. However, this advanced state of intellectual development is neither intimidating nor annoying, because fortunately Sophie is also generous, sweet, kind and funny, and -- most importantly, not above laughing at herself. Sophie also has Cerebral Palsy.
Every summer, on Sophie's birthday, her father's generous employers hold an outdoor fundraising barbecue and party known as Sophie's Star. Over the years this worthy celebration has grown into one of this small town's major social events, with local bands playing and people dancing, the crowds getting bigger every year. Thousands of dollars have been raised for the cause, little Sophie has become something of a small town celebrity (you can see cars driving by with "Sophie's Star" bumper stickers), and this annual birthday gala has had the wonderful effect of bringing this good community of ours together in ways that are very rewarding and very special.
And the funds thus raised are indeed critical. The medical expenses involved in the continuous ongoing treatment and therapy required for children with Cerebral Palsy are truly staggering. But thanks to the open-hearted generosity of this little community, all of Sophie's needs have thus far been met. Among these treatments are annual visits to the Children's Hospital in Boston for her Botox/Phenol shots. Because this is an invasive procedure, and the patient is put to sleep during the operation, it is considered a form of minor surgery.
Three summers ago, in July of 2005, I joined the family for this annual trip to the hospital in Boston. Among all of her other worthy attributes, little Sophie is boundlessly courageous and brave. She faces these ongoing assaults to her little body without complaint. In fact, she appears to be genetically incapable of self-pity -- an admirable quality inherited no doubt from her loving parents.
After the operation, as we sat waiting in the hospital lobby for Sophie to awaken from her sleep, I was watching all the busy people hurrying by. The doctors, the nurses, the medical technicians, administrators and various hospital employees, all preoccupied with the fulfillment of their various missions, all serving that one major over-riding mission: To help people in their time of need, and to save lives, to save as many lives as they could possibly save. Many of these people had sacrificed and given up much of their personal lives just to be able to be here today, performing their missions, one of which, had been our lovely Sophie's minor operation.
Earlier that day, July 7, 2005, three thousand miles away, in London, another kind of operation had just taken place.
Posted: 01 Sep 2008 07:08 PM CDT
Classy protesters attack GOP delegates injuring an 80 year-old man. Yes, Pro-Peace folks are just so peaceful huh?
While Republicans are left with time on their hands because of altered conventions plans, they have taken to the phones and are collecting money for the victims of Hurricane Gustav who is pounding the U.S. Gulf Coast, as reported by Fox News.
The Republican Convention has been altered with state delegates collecting money for victims of Hurricane Gustav, Anti-war protesters did not alter their plans, turned violent and started damaging property and attacked an 80 year-old delegate.
About 150 red phones were set up in the ballroom and Cindy McCain not only helped make the calls, she and husband John McCain donated $25,000 dollars to relief efforts. In all, 90 delegates, volunteers, campaign staff and others in the Twin Cities for the convention were helping out at the telethon.
The telethon" started at 2 p.m. ET and had raised $1.165 million by 3 p.m. ET. One anonymous donor had donated one million dollars alone.
Inside the convention hall had been turned into a relief effort as the GOP suspended most activities and focused on helping the victims of the massive stor,
Outside, anti-war protesters, did not altered their plans at all.
What was supposed to be a "peaceful" anti-war protest, organized by a group called the Coalition to March on the RNC and Stop the War, turned violent when another group called Funk the War started becoming violent. Delegates were attacked, windows broken, tires were flattened and bottles were thrown and reports from Yahoo News say at least one fire was set.
The Police used tear gas and the end result so far is 56 protesters, dressed in black and telling reporters they were "anarchists", were arrested.
The scene took place several blocks from the Xcel Energy Center where the Republican Convention is being held in St Paul, Minnesota.
The delegates that were attacked were members of the Connecticut delegation. The disembarked from their bus near the Xcel Energy Center and were approached by a group of protesters that tried to rip their credentials off their necks and sprayed them with an unknown toxic substance which stained their clothes and burned their eyes.
One of those delegates was 80 years old and he needed treatment for injuries.
Five of those arrested had set a fire to a garbage can and tried to push it into the police vehicles
At one point, people pushed a trash bin filled with trash and threw garbage in the streets and at cars. They also took down orange detour road signs. One of them used a screwdriver to puncture the back tire of a limousine waiting at an intersection and threw a wooden board at the vehicle, denting its side. Another hurled a glass bottle at a charter bus that had stopped at an intersection. The bottle smashed into pieces but didn't appear to damage the bus.
Authorities have asked for and received 150 Minnesota National Guard soldiers to help them deal with protesters.
Posted: 01 Sep 2008 04:56 PM CDT
The final numbers are still being tallied but McCain campaign officials tell ABC News the total contributions for August made to the campaign is over $47 million, with $10 million coming in since the announcement of Sarah Palin as his VP pick on Friday.
Reports are coming out that John McCain has a record month in contributions with $10 million pouring into the campaign since the announcement of Sarah Palin as his vice presidential candidate.
According to Brian Rogers, a campaign spokesman, "We're still counting."
A top McCain official, tells reporters, "We were blown away. She has energized our base and when we see the money flowing like that we know we have a hit."
As a result, the official said, Palin will be asked to spend at least 80 per cent of her time raising money between now and the election.
Future monies will be collected on behalf of the Republican National Committee because John McCain opted to use the public financing system that has been used for decades, but which Barack Obama opted out of.
Any excess campaign funds from these donations, after McCain is made the official candidate will be steered to other candidates and different committees as required by law.
The overwhelmingly positive reactions in the last couple of days to the choice of the McCain VP pick in Palin, is amazing to see.
She is winning over conservative America by leaps and bounds, she has evangelical leaders stepping up and speaking up for her after her announcement about her daughter being pregnant, she has feminists, especially Clinton supporters, are watching the media with eagle eyes to trounce on sexism where ever it rears it's ugly head.
Crowds are larger than usual when she shows up with John McCain. People impressed with her all American attitude, her love for her country, her spirit and spunk.
John McCain chose well and I think the more people see of her, hear from her, talk with her and get to know her, these reactions will only get better.
There are those with doubts and few not as excited as others are expressing, but the majority of responses I have seen here and elsewhere, shows me that Palin is the right woman, for the right job.
Posted: 01 Sep 2008 02:30 PM CDT
Video of Obama "strongly urging" people to "back off", below.
The statement issued by Sarah Palin and her husband Todd, via the McCain website:
In the short time since the announcement from Sarah Palin that her daughter is pregnant and will be marrying the father of her child, reactions have started to come out with Barack Obama, taking the high road and declaring "families are off limits."
"We have been blessed with five wonderful children who we love with all our heart and mean everything to us. Our beautiful daughter Bristol came to us with news that as parents we knew would make her grow up faster than we had ever planned. We're proud of Bristol's decision to have her baby and even prouder to become grandparents. As Bristol faces the responsibilities of adulthood, she knows she has our unconditional love and support.
Reactions are coming out fast and furiously from Evangelicals, supporters and even Barack Obama issued a harsh response.
Starting with Barack Obama's reaction when he was asked to comment on the news that Sarah Palin's 17 year-old daughter was pregnant, he said it was irrelevant to the political campaign and went on to admonish "I think peoples families are off limits and people's children are especially off limits, " as reported by CBS News.
He continued on to say that he would strongly urge people to "back off" further stating , "My mother had me when she was 18 years old," Obama said, adding that families should deal with these issues privately. "That shouldn't be the topic of our politics, and I hope that anybody who is supporting me understands that's off limits."
He continued on to assert that no one in his campaign is involved nor will be and he concluded by saying, "And if I ever thought that it was somebody in my campaign that was involved in something like that, they'd be fired."
Watch the whole video above, those were just the highlights.
Other reactions coming out include evangelical leaders, who expressed excitement and immediately united behind the John McCain/Sarah Palin ticket within hours of McCain announcing Palin as his running mate as TIME noted last Friday when the announcement was made.
Dr. James C. Dobson of Focus on the Family issued a statement right after the news came out today, reported by ABC News:
David Brody brings the response of another top Evangelical leader Dr. Richard Land, President of the Southern Baptist Convention's Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, who states, "This is the pro-life choice. The fact that people will criticize her for this shows the astounding extent to which the secular critics of the pro-life movement just don't get it. Those who criticize the Palin family don't understand that we don't see babies as a punishment but as a blessing. Barack Obama said that if one of his daughters made a mistake and got pregnant out of wedlock he wouldn't want her to be punished with a child. Pro lifers don't see a child as punishment."
Brody himself believes this will resound with the religious community as well as with Americans as he points out, "Look, this development will actually be positive for the most part with Evangelicals. First they hear that Sarah Palin chooses the life option even though she had a Downs Syndrome baby and once again the family (and Bristol) has chosen the life option in this recent case. That's a double "ca-ching". Let's call this the Evangelical daily double," he thin goes on to point out how this will cause people to relate to Palin and her family.
These were the first reactions from the core base of the Republican Party supporters and considering their are already hundreds of stories written about this in such a short amount of time, it should be expected that more reactions will be coming out in the days to come, from both sides of the aisle.
The handling of this delicate situation will be a true indicator of the "tone" the next two months of political campaigning will go.
Obama probably understands immediately that if his supporters continue to attack Palin on this issue, he will be the one to suffer for it politically and no one can blame him for trying to set the tone and shut his far left extremist supporters up before they kill his chances completely.
Do I think his supporters will listen?
The smart ones will, the "Obamabot" portion of his supporters will not, and they will make such noise that it will be associated with Obama and he will suffer politically because of them.
(Added the updates from the previous post on this issue into the body of this piece because the other post was getting unruly.)
Posted: 01 Sep 2008 01:37 PM CDT
According to the latest advisory from the National Weather Center, which is listed here as advisory number 19, but is constantly changing as the advisories are updated, Hannah has become the fourth storm of the season, at 75 mile an hour winds it makes Hannah a Category 1 as of this time and is has caused the Government of the Bahamas to issue a Hurricane warning for Central and Southeastern Bahamas.
While Hurricane Gustav makes landfall in the U.S Gulf Coast states, Hurricane Hannah now heads toward the U.S. East Coast.
Projections show that Hannah could continue along it's current path and make landfall potentially affecting Florida, Georgia and possibly North Carolina if it follows the projected path, which has the North Carolina Red Cross keeping some of their supplies close to home in case they are needed to combat the potential hit from Hannah.
The U.S. Coast Guard units are prepared to send more ships, aircrafts, medical teams, disaster assistance teams to areas affected and some have already been sent to the Gulf Coast to help with the damage seen from Gustav which is a Category 2 as reported at Bradenton News.
The projected path of what is now a Hurricane Hanna is expected to hit the East Coast of Florida within 3 days unless the storm slows or loses strength after hitting land in the Bahamas, but even then it is expected to gain strength again once it goes over the warm waters again.
Hannah was not projected to become a Hurricane until Tuesday or Wednesday initially.
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