Friday, June 18, 2004

Work that meme

This AP story, entitled "Kerry Still Standing Despite Ads' Damage", works an angle that the left has been eager to push:

President Bush's re-election team drove up negative impressions of John Kerry during a relentless $80 million advertising campaign the last three months, but the Republicans failed to undercut the Democrat's standing as a viable alternative to Bush.


The Kerry campaign counters that for all the money Bush has spent, the Republican has gained little traction.

"They have used their best opportunity, spent more than $80 million on negative advertising and John Kerry's in a strong position," said Kerry campaign pollster Mark Mellman. Most of Bush ads have criticized Kerry, although not all.

In between, two paragraphs point out something that has been often overlooked in this affair:

The Kerry campaign spent more than $60 million on ads that attempted to define the four-term Massachusetts senator for a significant part of the electorate that knows little about him and spots criticizing Bush's policies.

Democratic-leaning interest groups spent another $40 million on advertising critical of Bush.

Bush has been outspent by Kerry and his allies, which might explain his "lack of traction". The total spent by the Democrats does not even begin to address the relentless attacks levelled at the president during the Democratic primary, in which the candidates spent more time attacking Bush than they did their opponents.

It's nice to see that at least one reporter did a little number crunching while researching the article, but it's unlikely that those numbers will end up on ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN, or in the New York Times or Los Angeles Times.

posted at 07:17 PM | permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, June 17, 2004

Bartlett on 2008

Bruce Bartlett, a policy analyst during the Reagan administration and currently a senior fellow at the National Center for Policy Analysis, had a column last Friday which analyzes the 2008 elections, based on who wins this November. There's not a whole lot of new insight, but it is well-organized and briefly explores who will run in 2008, on both sides of the spectrum. (It's not going to be Cheney.) It's worth a look.

posted at 08:43 PM | permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, June 16, 2004

Operation Shoe Fly

Taking a cue from Chief Wiggles and his toys-for-Iraqi children initiative, SGT Hook has started up a new program in Afghanistan that he has dubbed "Operaton Shoe Fly". He is soliciting donations of new or used children's shoes, as a staggering number of Afghani children do not own a pair of shoes, something that most Americans (and Western Europeans) take for granted every day.

If you have shoes to donate, ship them here:

Operation Shoe Fly
B Co, 214th Aviation Regiment
Bagram, Afghanistan
APO AE 09354-9998

For more information on the program, follow the link to Sgt. Hook.

(link courtesy of Serenity.)

posted at 03:51 PM | permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, June 14, 2004

Paybacks are a bitch...

After Newt Gingrich resigned from his post as Speaker of the House (and his seat in congress) in 1999, there has been an unspoken truce between the Republicans and Democrats in congress. Gingrich, who rose to prominence in his (ultimately successful) crusade against then-speaker Jim Wright, was the victim of a politically motivated smear campaign by David Bonior (D-MI), who filed 75 seperate ethics charges against Gingrich. 74 of them were dismissed immediately, and while he was found guilty on the last, the IRS later cleared him of the charge.

Now, soon-to-be Ex-Representative Chris Bell (D-TX), defeated in the Democratic primary, has filed a three-prong ethics charge against Tom DeLay, the Republican Majority Leader in the House, charging him with illigal fundraising, abuse of office, and quid pro quo situations. The GOP has announced that they are going to respond in kind against a Democratic leader. This may come as a shock to Democrats, who are unaccustomed to such a response. (Gingrich never filed a single counter-charge against Bonior, although he probably should have done so). I wonder if Bell's action was designed to punish the Democratic Party in response to his defeat in the primary, as it is probably not in the party's best interests to start a parade of ethics investigations right before a critical election cycle.

posted at 11:21 PM | permalink | Comments (0)

Vocabulary test

This was quite a test. I guessed outright on 30 of them (and got 16 of them wrong), but I managed a respectable 165 (out of a possible 200). According to the author of the website, this puts me in the top .2 percentile (99.8), based on his own experience (his score was identical to mine). A quick look at some of the bloggers and blog readers shows the high literacy level amogst the blogs that have participated; almost all of them are at 140 or higher, and my score falls right in the middle.

(Link courtesy of XRLQ. It appears that half the blogosphere has taken the test in the past two days.)

posted at 11:00 PM | permalink | Comments (0)

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