Merry Christmas From Chicago

⊆ 7:36 AM by James Manning | ˜ 8 comments »

Michigan Avenue


State Street & the Chicago Theater


Santa Rides the El


The El Train Decorated for Christmas

The Start of the Festival of Lights

The Parade of Lights Festival Down Michigan Ave

Mickey Lights Up The Magnificant Mile

The True Meaning of Christmas



I wish all of you a Merry Christmas and for those who do not celebrate, Happy Holidays. Enjoy being with the family and be of good cheer. It's been a great year and the blessing is that we're still here. I'm done blogging for the rest of the year and I'll see you guys in 2009!!!
Holla

 

What's In A Name?

⊆ 2:15 PM by James Manning | ˜ 3 comments »

I have no idea what goes through people minds when their naming their children, but it is clear that some folks shouldn’t be allowed to do it. Take a walk through the ‘hood and you will hear a host of “Afrocentric” sounding names. Though I don’t think Shaniqwa and Terenique sound very ethnic at all. Since those names have been around for some time, I think people are getting use to them.

People sometimes forget that children have to deal with the name given them throughout their adult life. Celebrities have this really bad. Madonna naming her children Lourdes and Rocco is crazy. Here are some other strange and odd names of celebrities:

Toni Braxton – Denin Cole (son)
Christie Brinklie – Sailor Lee (daughter)
Tom Cruise – Suri (son)
Richard Gere – Homer Jigme (son) where the hell did Jigme come from?
Kate Hudson – Ryder Russell (son)

There is an entire list here: Link. It’s actually pretty sad when you read it.

But the article I read today takes the cake for bad baby names. A couple has gone the extra mile by naming their children Adolf Hitler Campbell and Joycelyn Aryan Nation Campbell. That’s correct, some idiot parents actually named their daughter Aryan Nation. This is a cruel thing to do to a child because she will have to carry that for the rest of her life. (Read Article )

It is one thing for celebrities coming up with weird names after a night of puffing smoke, but naming a child after abhorrent human beings and racist organizations is tantamount to child abuse. I for one would not allow my children to befriend these children because I would be afraid of them being around the parents.

People, please… stop with the madness. I understand culturally relevant names and being a little creative. But remember, little Homer is going to be a teenager one day and Homer is probably not a name you want to carry while trying to survive high school. Can you imagine the jokes that Sailor will hear? And poor Adolf, his parents have set him up for a very lonely life. They’ll be known as “those kids with the racist names”.

Read Article

Question: What is the most creative name of a person you know.

My Answer: Stormy

 

Miss World - PHEWY

⊆ 8:51 AM by James Manning | ˜ 1 comments »

From 109 countries around the world, these fluzzies touted minimal talent, average beauty and a total disregard for cleavage. It was a beauty contest worthy of its insignificance and lack of prominence.

I was forced to watch part of the Miss World contest last night. I have to say that at times, it was the worst television I’ve ever seen and at other times it was close to the worst television I’ve ever seen. To make it interesting, I started rooting for a few of the girls. My favorites were Miss Venezuela and Miss India. I was also pulling for Miss Trinidad and Miss Angola.

So for those of you lucky enough to not see this sham TV, I’d like to present to you the finalist for the Peace on The Miss PHAT Contest:

Miss Venezuela:

Rating very high on the PHATness scale, Ms. Venezuela easily surpassed 100 other fluzzies but not having a booty that is banging off the tracks may hurt her in the end (no pun intended).



Miss India

Sophisticated, smart, beautiful and funny she is every man’s dream. However, the Miss PHAT Contest places more emphasis on slut-potential and she may just have too much class.



Miss Angola

I am a fan. I am a fan. Ms. Angola has a fun spirit and is exceptionally smart. But we care about body and fineness and she has both of those qualities as well.



Miss Trinidad

The finest of the finalist who I imagine is a great site to see during Carnival.



AND THE WINNER IS!!! (drum role)

Miss Trinidad!!!

In the end, she was the only one that showed us what she got and that made all the difference in the world. As for Miss World 2008, the judges chose some KGB fluzzie to represent the globe. But I guess we couldn’t expect more from Communist.

 

Blago and the Bars

⊆ 7:42 AM by James Manning | ˜ 8 comments »



Illinois politics is a funny game of shoots and ladder. The direction one takes on the ladder depends on whether you are shooting or getting shot in the back. The good politicians know to carry a lot of bullets but are selective when pulling the trigger. Men like Tony Rezco, Ed Vrdolyak and former Gov. George Ryan shot with reckless abandon hoping to be the last man standing. Then there is Gov. Rob Blagojevich who doesn’t have many friends, few weapons and the aim of a six year old taking a leak in a wind tunnel. Couple that with a big hairdo and even bigger ego and you get one of the worst politicians in Illinois history.

Blago as we like to call him, is being indicted on numerous charges but one being that he was attempting a pay-for-play scheme with the selection of President-elect Obama’s Senate seat. The following is from the Criminal Complaint filed by the FBI:



Paragraph 87: In particular, ROD BLAGOJEVICH has been intercepted conspiring to trade the senate seat for particular positions that the President-elect has the power to appoint (e.g. the Secretary of Health and Human Services). ROD BLAGOJEVICH has also been intercepted conspiring to sell the Senate seat in exchange for his wife’s placement on paid corporate boards or ROD BLAGOJEVICH’s placement at a private foundation in a significant position with a substantial salary. ROD BLAGOJEVICH has also been intercepted conspiring to sell the Senate seat in exchange for millions of dollars in funding for a non-profit organization that he would start and that would employ him at a substantial salary after he left the governorship.


Paragraph 90. Later on November 3, 2008, ROD BLAGOJEVICH spoke with Advisor A. By this time, media reports indicated that Senate Candidate 1, an advisor to the Presidentelect, was interested in the Senate seat if it became vacant, and was likely to be supported by the President-elect. During the call, ROD BLAGOJEVICH stated, “unless I get something real good for [Senate Candidate 1], shit, I’ll just send myself, you know what I’m saying.” ROD BLAGOJEVICH later stated, “I’m going to keep this Senate option for me a real possibility, you know, and therefore I can drive a hard bargain. You hear what I’m saying. And if I don’t get what I want and I’m not satisfied with it, then I’ll just take the Senate seat myself.” Later, ROD BLAGOJEVICH stated that the Senate seat “is a fucking valuable thing, you just don’t give it away for nothing.”


The rest of the complaint reads like the script of a movie. Blago put his foot deep into the mix this time and he should be going away for a long time. It really is a shame that our most recent governors have ended up in prison. That doesn’t say a lot about the selection process. Maybe now we can get an honest governor in Springfield. I feel sorry for the person that gets Obama’s seat because they will have a bullseye on their back the size of Lake Michigan.

Update: Just so everyone is very clear on where I stand. I believe this is a very GOOD DAY for Illinois. I do not support the bastard and am glad to see him go. I can't wait for the perp walk :D Blago is a crook and to have him and Bush out of my hair in the same year is something I thought was possible only in my dreams. Now, all we have to do is get rid of Todd Stroger and I will be riding high on political utopia.

 

The Big Three

⊆ 8:47 AM by James Manning | ˜ 8 comments »

I really haven't made up my mind whether or not a bailout of the American auto industry is a good idea. My gut tells me that it is not a good thing to do because the Big Three are just beginning to get their act together but they have a long way to go. They put all of their eggs in one basket (SUV's and trucks)while Asian car makers stormed the car market and Europeans cornered the luxury car market.

Living in Chicago, I don't have a need for a car so the only time I drive is when I rent. I have to admit that I like most of the GM cars that I've rented this past year. My favorite was the Saturn Aura. I also drove a Ford Envoy Hybrid to Kentucky and was happy with the gas mileage. American car companies are better in my estimation but $25 billion is a lot of money.

With enough strings attached, I would go along with a bailout. After giving AIG over $150 billion to cover bad paper, I see no reason why we shouldn't spend $25 billion to support 3 million American jobs. But the auto industry has some structural problems that it will have to address. It also needs to move faster with hybrids and electric cars.

As innovative as American companies are, it amazes me that we are so slow to adapt new technology. HDTV is just not catching on in America. I recall seeing HDTV in Japan when I was in the Navy and that was over 18 years ago. With cars, we somehow believe that getting 30 mpg is a big deal. We have the technology to have Hummer get 30 mpg so our cars should be getting 40 mpg at least.


2009 Saturn Aura


If I purchase a new car, it will be a hybrid and more than likely it will be a GM or Ford. But until then, I'm happy spending $20 a week for a bus pass. Owning a car would cost me an additional $500 a month. But I digress.

I am hopeful the Big Three can make a comeback and maybe it's time to think about bringing more manufacturing jobs back to America.

Discussion
1. Do you support a bailout for the Big Three?
2. Is there an American made car that appeals to you?
3. Do you believe American made cars are on par with Toyota and Honda when it comes to quality?

 

Agent 007: Bond.... James Bond

⊆ 10:58 AM by James Manning | ˜ 13 comments »

UPDATED: I posted this blog a while back but wanted to updated it to celebrate the new James Bond movie that opens tomorrow. Besides Iron Man, Quantum of Solace is the only movie that is on my "must see" list. When I first posted about the new James Bond, Daniel Craig wasn't even on the short list. I wasn't sure about him but he did win me over and now I am once again a 007 fanatic. I do believe this film will have all of the ingredients we all expect in a Bond movie:

(1) Awesome chase seen in exoctic locale.
(1) Shagged hottie in the first 15 minutes
(5) High-tech spy gadgets
(20) Bad guys killed in the first 10 minutes of the film
(300) Additional bad guys killed in a variety of cool ways.
(7) Exoctic cars
End the movie shagging a hottie in an exoctic location with lots of blue water around.

Now, in Casino Royale, bond response when asked how his drink should be made was, "Do I look like I give a damn". This is not the usual "shaken, not stirred" that one would expect. I am hopeful that he has upped his sophiticate and utter that famous phrase. There actually is some scientic reason for that request:

Scientists, specifically biochemists, and martini connoisseurs have investigated the difference between a martini shaken and a martini stirred. According to a study at the Department of Biochemistry at the University of Western Ontario in Canada to determine if the preparation of a martini has an influence on their antioxidant capacity, the shaken gin martinis were able to break down hydrogen peroxide and leave only 0.072% of the peroxide behind, versus the stirred gin martini which left behind 0.157% of the peroxide.[7] The study was done at the time because moderate consumption of alcohol appears to reduce the risk of cataracts, cardiovascular disease, and stroke, none of which afflict the fictional James Bond. Source

Go figure. Anyway, I am looking forward to the movies and will be in the theater tomorrow to watch!!!




PAST BLOG POST BELOW

There aren’t many characters in the movies that men of all ages and race wish they could be, if only for a moment. But, Bond… James Bond is no ordinary man. He is the embodiment of what we wish we were. Good looking, charming, mysteries, brave, a lady killer and able to kick ass with pull of a laser flashlight and an exploding tube of toothpaste and drive away in a $300,000 car with the bad guy’s girl on our lap.

There isn’t a man alive that wouldn’t want to embark on a journey of saving the world while bedding a few good looking dames in the process. Bond is a man… Bond is a hero… Bond is an ICON.

That is why the next James Bond must carry on the tradition of mackin’ broads, defying authority, saving the world and riding off into the sunset leaving the carnage of bad guys and broken hearts in his wake.

There are several actors ready to take the reigns. Hugh Jackman, Ewan McGregor, Jude Law, Heath Ledger, Clive Owen and Orlando Bloom are the frontrunners. I’m not sure either but if I had to pick I’d go with Clive Owens. He has a more mature look and the others are a little too young and pretty for my taste. James Bond is not a pretty boy.

Before we move on to the next Bond, let’s honor the men that portrayed one of the greatest heroes of the 20th Century.



SEAN CONNERY

Sean Connery – The original James Bond on which all others are measured. Connery was the best. Connery had a certain charisma, wit and way with the ladies as well as the cold-blooded, calculated mentality that you expect from the world’s greatest super-spy.
He Starred In:
Dr. No
From Russia With Love
Thunderball
You Only Live Twice
Diamonds are Forever

ROGER MOORE
Roger Moore – I was introduced to Roger Moore before I saw Sean Connery. Roger was not as cold-blooded as Connery. I guess you could call him the family friendly spy. He didn’t kill that much and when he did, it more spectacular than just walking behind the bad guy and breaking his neck. What Roger Moore’s Bond brought to the movies was the anticipation of the Bond Girl, the Bond Ride and the Bond Gadgets. If those were on point you knew you were in for a good movie.

He Starred In:
Live and Let Die
The Man With the Golden Gun
The Spy Who Loved Me
Moonraker
For Your Eyes Only
Octopussy
A View To Kill

TIMOTHY DOLTON


Timothy Dolton – He was ok, and I have to admit that ‘License to Kill’ was tight. But I just didn’t feel him. Too dark, no wit and I didn’t get the feeling that he was a playa on the level Moore and Connery. His two movies were more action-thriller and lacked the light-heartedness of previous Bond movies. I won’t rag on him – he was cool.

He Starred In:
The Living Daylight
License To Kill

PIERCE BRONSON


Pierce Bronson – Truthfully, I wasn’t sure about this cat in the beginning. Although I was a fan of Remington Steele, that didn’t automatically translate to liking him as 007. However, after the first movie, Goldeneye, I became a fan. He took it back to the Connery era – witty, ladies man and dark at the same time.

He Starred In:
Goldeneye
Tomorrow Never Dies
The World Is Not Enough
Die Another Day

 

Yes We Did

⊆ 10:04 AM by James Manning | ˜ 8 comments »



At the moment, it is hard for me to express what I am feeling. In 76 days the work will begin, but right now, the reality that a new era has begun in America is beginning to set in.

I was in Grant Park last night and it was a beautiful moment. I was surrounded by people from all walks of life. An older white couple sat on the grass behind me; an African American woman sat with her daughter on her lap; another young white woman danced with her daughter. Young white men yelled out Obama along side of young Middle Eastern women. It was a picture of America as she is, as we believe her to be. Songs normally reserved for soccer matches were sung by a group of Italian and Greek men and then others joined, interrupted only by calls of "Yes We Can".

We will get around to discussing the nitty-gritty of the campaign. But for right now, I'm just going to to remember the stories that my grandmother told me of marching with Martin Luther King Jr., and how one day I will tell my children and grand children of the time I campaigned for the first Black President of the United States.




 

The Electoral College Challenge

⊆ 3:29 PM by James Manning | ˜ 9 comments »

Ok, it is time to put you money where you mouth is. I have my prediction for election night and I am interested in seeing what you guys think. Most of the states are in the bag for either McCain or Obama so I want to concentrate on the swing states and the total number of electoral colleges.

Here is my prediction:

Pennsylvania – Obama
North Carolina – McCain
Virginia – Obama
Florida – McCain
Colorado – Obama
Ohio - McCain
Nevada – Obama

Total EV – Obama 291 McCain 247


Surprises for Obama:
I think Obama has a shot at Missouri, Indiana and Florida.

Surprises for McCain:
McCain may be able to pull off New Hampshire or Nevada.

This will be my last post before the election. Give me your predictions

 

In Defense of Sarah Palin

⊆ 7:28 AM by James Manning | ˜ 20 comments »

This will probably be the one and only post where I actually side with Sarah Palin. With the $150,000 wardrobe issue, I actually believe that is a non-factor but one that the GOP should stop trying to defend. Elizabeth Hasselback calling the controversy sexist is stupid and the campaign should not have put her on the stump. Not only does she is an idiot, but the sound of her voice make me cringe. How her husband tolerates her I’ll never know.

But the story behind the story is that Sarah Palin is going rogue. She is not happy with the way McCain handlers have presented her and McCain’s camp is placing the blame for their upcoming defeat on Sarah Palin’s dismal performance. I never believe Gov. Palin was ready for prime-time but come November 5, McCain will have to own the defeat. Sarah Palin has nothing to do with it.

Many on the Right have yet to acknowledge that McCain has run a horrible campaign. After locking up the nomination, he went into hibernation. His “green screen” speech was a hot mess. His campaign had no strategy outside of tarnishing Obama. His now infamous, “the fundamentals of the economy are strong” marked his downfall. Certainly Sarah Palin didn’t help and she has yet to recover from the Katie Couric interview. But that too was McCain’s fault. Rather than allow her the opportunity to get her feet wet with reporters, they tossed her into the deep end.

I don’t blame Palin for going rogue. This is John McCain’s last run at the Oval Office and Palin’s first. She has a future and McCain is the past. It will be interesting to see just how far under the bus the McCain camp toss Palin.

The Future of the GOP

Sarah Palin will be a popular figure in the GOP but I doubt she is a lock for the nomination in 2012. First, she may have money but at some point she will have to up some substance on issues. Her biggest problem is that she will have to learn how to attract independents because right now she is a “base” candidate in the vein of Pat Buchanan and that is too narrow of a window to win a national election. She will also have to compete with other up-and-coming GOP candidates. That is not an easy feat especially with Mitt Romney and John Thune waiting in the wings.

But her major hurdle will be that she must navigate the political scene with very little room for error. Any gaffe that reinforces her intellectual lightweight status will be the nail in the coffin for her political career. Another obstacle is staying on the national scene while residing in Alaska. Out of sight, out of mind and no state is further out of site than Alaska. Being governor will not afford her the opportunity to stay on the circuit.

Despite it all, I believe Sarah Palin will attempt to make a run in 2012 but I believe the Republican Party is in for a major overhaul and Palin’s style of politics may not be in favor by the next election cycle.

 

Why I Hate: Conservative Pundits

⊆ 7:22 AM by James Manning | ˜ 1 comments »

Barak Obama left the campaign trail to visit his ailing grandmother. Most people understand this but leave it up to the talking heads on the right to smear him for the decision.

Yesterday, Brad Blakeman was on MSNBC chastising Obama for using his campaign plane to "go visit grandma". He made this stupid comment in the throes of defending Sarah Palin's $150,000 shopping spree; suggesting that the cost of flying to Hawaii to visit his sick grandmother is more controversial than spending $75,000 at Nieman Marcas.

View Clip Here

Then we have comedian/racist Rush Limbaugh, Michael Savage and James Corsi suggesting that Barak Obama's Hawaii trip is somehow related to his birth certificate.

From Michael Savage:

"And Obama's leaving for Hawaii -- why? Why? What's he doing there? Why's he going there, huh? What's he going there for, huh? Why's he gonna -- the last phase of a race, he's getting off the track just to visit his grandmother? Don't be stupid. It's the birth certificate issue, you fools, you."


From Jerome Corsi:
I'm headed out to Honolulu. I am not convinced that Barack Obama is going because his grandmother is sick. I appreciate that his grandmother is sick and he wants to be with her. I do recall that Barack Obama's mother died of cancer, and he didn't go to be by her side when she died. He relates that in his autobiography, Dreams From My Father. And I'm going out to do what digging I can on the birth certificate.


You can here it for yourself:


These guys are idiots. I think it is sad that there are people out there that actually listen to this crap. Maybe one day people will wake up and we can remove this garbage from the American landscape.

 

Project Runway: To the White House

⊆ 8:41 AM by James Manning | ˜ 8 comments »

It has been reported the RNC has spent $150,000 dolling up Sarah Palin and et al. That is a lot of money and it probably would have been wise to bypass Barney’s and Saks Fifth Avenue for Macy’s. With that said, as fashionable as Gov. Palin might have been in Alaska, I am sure she needed some polishing to stand on the national stage. There aren’t many of us that wouldn’t need a total upgrade if we were thrust into the spotlights. This is the look Gov. Palin need to show:


The hair could use some work but overall, it’s a good look.

If there is something that we can blast the McCain campaign about with regards to fashion is that they allow John McCain to wear that god-awful blue sport coat with the gold buttons, highlighted with a small-box checkered shirt. Someone should pull Cindy McCain to the side and tell her to get her act together. Wives don’t let husbands look frumpy… especially if you’re worth $100 million.


And then there is this abomination:


Again, there he is with the gold buttons on a blue jacket. MY GOD!!! Are you running for President of the United States or President of the local Moose Lodge? Plus, the jacket is too big and too long. In fact, the pants and the sweater are too large. They should put this Bob Hope ensemble out if its misery. I'm not the only one who thinks this. Check out this post with a series of pictures critiquing McCain's wardrobe.

Now, people are wondering how much does Obama spend on his suits. Well, there is a company called Hartmarx that makes Obama suits. It is the Gold Trumpeter collection and retail for $1500. The suits are 97% wool and 3% cashmere, pleated pants with an inch-and-a-quarter cuff. It’s a good look for him.


They say next to a wife, a good tailor is the best friend a man could ever have. I concur.

Michelle Obama seems to have a good sense of style as well. Unlike Gov. Palin, most of her dresses range somewhere between $150 and $400. Of course, I’m sure she has 100 times more clothes than Obama considering that she can’t wear the same outfit twice.


Joe Biden – Mr Scranton, Pennsylvania – is a very good dresser. This particular outfit seems a bit ornate with the cuff links, lapel pin and the tie making for a busy look. But the dark blue suit and silver hair makes for a classic look.


As opposed to Frumpy McGrump:


Note to self: Place into storage all sweaters received as Christmas gifts by the grandchildren until such time they can be burned or buried in the back yard. Again, Cindy McCain should be flogged for allowing McGruff to leave the house with an alien penis stenciled on his sweater. There is nothing worse than looking old and gay - especiall when your wife looks like a Klingon.


And this final photo is for my own entertainment. McCain’s jacket is too big but who would notice when he’s trying to grab Obama’s ass. It seems as though McCain has a thing for men.


He needs to tuck his shirt in and it wouldn’t hurt to order a little starch. Considering how bad John McCain dresses, having to take Sarah Palin from this:


To this:


is probably the best return on investment the campaign has gotten this fall.

 

Yes We Can

⊆ 8:22 PM by James Manning | ˜ 7 comments »

Don't believe the polls. There is still much work left to be done. We have the opportunity to change this nation. There are those who are too cynical to want to try or even believe that it is possible. They want to divide us, define us with ideological rants (socialist, Marxist, elite, liberal) - this has worked in the past. But we must change the way we do politics. Can we do it... Yes We Can.


 

What I Hate: Robocalls

⊆ 8:57 AM by James Manning | ˜ 2 comments »

Robocalls are in the news once again. I live in Chicago, and Illinois is considered a safe state for Barak Obama so it was with great shock that I discovered robocall messages on my voice mail. After listening to them, I really understand why people hate them. Just so you guys can get a feel for what it is like, I transcribed just a few of the messages. It is shameful what these guys have done to the political process.

[Message received today at 10:27 am] Hi, this is Barak Obama and as you know this country is in dire need of change. Not the change that McCain found under the pillows of his sofa and is now using to fund his campaign, but a change in the direction of this country. I’m hoping that I can count on your support on November 4. This message was paid for by the donations I received just a few minutes ago.

[Message received today at 11:05 am] This is John McCain. My friends I am here to inform you that Barak Obama is a socialist pig and has sold his soul to the devil. My friends, we cannot allow this man the opportunity to call for jihad from the Oval Office. I am the type of American that you need. Vote me on November 4, and spare our country from socialism. This message was paid for with public funds.

[Message received today at 12:23pm] Hi, I’m Colin Powell and I am supporting Barak Obama for President. He is exactly what America needs at this time in our history. Support America on November 4. Vote for Barak Obama.

[Message received today at 12:24pm] This is Rick Davis for the McCain Campaign. On November 4, we’re asking you to set aside your worries about the economy, healthcare, wars, Wall Street’s collapse and the overall shitty job that the Republicans have done over the past eight years and tap into your racist subconsciousness and vote for McCain. Though you will be voting against your best interest, at least you can say to your grandchildren that you didn’t vote for a black man.

[Message received today at 1:15pm] It's your friendly neighborhood Maverick here, and I’m paying for this ad with some Food Stamps I swapped for cash. So what is this election really about… Ayers…Ayers… Ayers… Joe the Plumber… ACORN and… um, hold on a sec. What are these kids doing… I know the hell they ain’t playing ball [sound of door opening] Get off my lawn you dirty rotten kids before I…
[Click]

[Message received today at 2:51 pm] Heeeey, this is Joey. That’s what my old man called me when we were just scraping by in Scranton, Pennsylvania. Ladies and gentlemen, John McCain, god bless him, is a total dick. He wouldn’t know middle America if it snuck behind him and gave him a good ole fashion weggie. That’s what the kids use to do to me when I was growing up in Willmington, Delaware. And ladies and gentlemen, there is nothing fun about a weggie. That’s what McCain and Palin will bring to the White House, a weggie for middle-America. Small towns across the country will have their whitie tighties scrunched in crack of their economic asses while the corporatcrats walk around in loose fitting, silk, Polo boxers. That's not right. It's not fair. This country needs…what do you mean shut the hell up? [sound of pushing and shoving] Hey, don’t take the mic, I’m not done talking. I’m never done talking… Wait…no… no… nooooooooo
[Click]

[Message received today at 3:27 pm] This is Sarah Palin and goshdarnit, I hear Joe’s got a robocall. Ohhh say it aint so Joe. While my opponents are palling around with terrorist and trying to convince mothers to kill their babies, I’m out traveling across real America, exciting the base and trying to keep Obama from completely humiliating ole McGrumpy. So go out a vote and then donate to my 2012 campaign run for President. Don’t be discouraged by my interviews with Katie Couric or the Tina Fey caricature of me. Those carpet-munching bitches will be long forgotten and I’ll be ruler of the free world just in time for Armageddon. God bless ya.


[Message received today at 4:00 pm] Wassup, bitches. This is Paris Hilton. I’m not running for anything but I have more money than any of the douche bags running for office and besides… I’m hot. In two weeks when you finally vote for one of these guys, you’ll go back to your pitiful, mundane, useless lives and they are going to forget about you until the next election cycle. In the meantime, they will make you hate one another, call each other names, then after the election, spend your tax dollars however they please. So why am I telling you this? Do I care? Not in the least. I just firgured you would like to know that I’m rich and it doesn’t matter to me who wins. I’ll see you bitches in the soup lines… while I’m passing by in my Mercedes. Smooches.

 

Endorsement: Colin Powell

⊆ 9:24 AM by James Manning | ˜ 14 comments »

What does it mean for the Presidential race to have Colin Powell endorse Barak Obama? I think many of us expected this endorsement but now that it is official, but having him come out so strongly is very important. The Right will attempt to disregard this but there are a lot of independents and center-right people who respect Powell and it will have some pull.

"I come to the conclusion that because of his ability to inspire, because of the inclusive nature of his campaign, because he is reaching out all across America, because of who he is and his rhetorical abilities -- and you have to take that into account -- as well as his substance -- he has both style and substance," Powell said. "He has met the standard of being a successful president, being an exceptional president."

I like this statement. It shows that Powell has been paying attention to the race and has come to his decision based on the evidence. I believe most people who support Obama feel the same way about Obama. John McCain is an angry man and feels that he deserves the Presidency. This is probably the same attitude that bedeviled Hillary Clinton. It seems incomprehensible to them that this young man could come out of left field and win.

We will see in the upcoming days what this will mean.

 

Oh the Agony. I Can't Bear It

⊆ 6:29 PM by James Manning | ˜ 2 comments »


There is no excuse to losing 3 games in the final minutes. There Bears should be 6-0 but to date all of their losses has come with defensive collapses in the final minutes of the game. Coming into the season my figured that the defense would carry the load with the offense but the offense is doing much better then many expected. Hopefully, my beloved Bears will turn things around for the final 2/3 part of the season. We have an opportunity to make a move towards the playoffs. C'mon guys. LETS GO!!!

 

Barak Obama!!!

⊆ 3:13 PM by James Manning | ˜ 3 comments »

 

My Country "Tears" of Thee

⊆ 10:16 AM by James Manning | ˜ 16 comments »



I expected the McCain campaign to pull out their bag of tricks sooner or later but I never really expected this level of hatred to rear its head. I am sorry to say that with the election of Barak Obama, the McCain campaign has ushered in a new of 1950’s level or racial hatred. What we are seeing now will not dissipate after November 4. No, what we are seeing is a new generation of racial intolerance which many of us thought was a product of bygone eras.

Make no mistake about it, Bill Ayers is not the issue. He is just a conduit for those to express their hatred and fear and McCain has stoking it with the help of Fixed News. I’ve always thought Sean Hannity was a racist and he has proven me right. But I never expected this from McCain. I never trusted him but I never thought of him as one that would go this deep into the gutter. He has and with it he has dragged American politics into a dangerous arena.

We are now on the precipice of destroying any hope of realizing Dr. King’s dream. If Barak Obama wins in November, half of America will actually believe that he is a terrorist and they will direct their hatred of Obama onto the African American community. Instead of using this opportunity as a means to finally put to rest the most divisive issue of American history, their hatred will invigorate them to work towards eroding the influence of African Americans in our society.

They will seek to destroy Obama and those of us that support him. They will set out to eliminate every Civil Rights gains made in the country. This is what McCain is creating with his campaign. He will regret that his final legacy will be that of a man that was willing to unravel the fabric of American society to win the White House. And he will see the rotten fruits of his labor and it will pain him to know that in the most important election of this generation, he chose the undignified path. With every racist rant from Sean Hannity, it will remind him that he appealed to America’s darkest side.

November 4, 2008 will mark a milestone in American history. There will be very little to celebrate. Either Barak Obama or John McCain will win but America as a whole will lose. Should Obama win, 50% of the electorate will feel that a Muslim Terrorist won and they display their hatred in ways we have never seen. Should Obama lose then 50% of the electorate will feel that stoking the fears of racial hatred is the most powerful force in American politics and despite what we’ve believed, not much progress has been made over the past 40 years.

As much as I love this country, I am sad for her.

 

The Roundup

⊆ 11:37 AM by James Manning | ˜ 0 comments »

Tomorrow is the 2nd presidential debate and I suspect the economy will be high on the list. After a weekend of mudslinging – much of which I didn’t pay attention to as it is football season and my teams (Illinois, Penn State and Da Bears) all won.

Sarah Palin went dirty as to be expected. When you have no ideas, no vision, no means of communicating a policy, why not send her out to sling mud. But bringing up Williams Ayers is probably the dumbest move as most Americans have no idea who he is and pretty don’t care. However, Charles Keating is a more interesting connection and one that will hurt McCain if Obama chooses to push it. I for one would rather not hear about either of these men and have the campaigns discuss how they are going to lead this country in what is becoming an increasingly difficult situation.

The Bears should be 5-0 right now but we’ll take 3-2 with some weak teams on deck. A good sign considering the Cubs stunk up the joint and the White Sox aren’t doing much better. Not a good post-season for Chicago baseball.

 

Classic Worst Person In the World

⊆ 8:00 PM by James Manning | ˜ 4 comments »

 

The Presidential Campaign: Where Does It Goes From Here

⊆ 10:06 AM by James Manning | ˜ 1 comments »

Here is my objective view of the election as it stands today:

While the discussion for the next couple of days will be the Vice President debate, the real story is with the campaign tactics that each candidate is pursuing. McCain pulled out of Michigan and is now going to focus on Maine, Pennsylvania, Ohio and Wisconsin. But before I go there, lets discuss the last night’s debate.

Sarah Palin was in danger of become a caricature and a drag on the McCain ticket. Last night she did just enough to stop the bleeding. If McCain would have allowed Gov. Palin to talk more in the past five weeks, her debate with Joe Biden could have added to the ticket, but instead it simply gave a sigh of relief to the base of the Party. For voters who were looking for serious answers for serious problems, the debate demonstrated that Gov. Palin and communicate the talking points but has no in-depth understanding of the issues.

In an election where independents and new voters will make the difference, a content Republican base is not good enough. From this point on, Gov. Palin will do no more media interviews outside of the friendly confines of Fox News and conservative talk radio. Again, that will do nothing to attract independents and young voters.

The focus now returns back to McCain and five weeks may not be enough time for McCain to turn it around. There are fewer people left to sway and Joe Biden’s proclamation to end the war in Iraq will go a long way with the American people. McCain now has to fight for states that Bush won. And here is the biggest problem for McCain; if the polls are accurate, Obama needs only to pick up 10 electoral votes out of the 115 electoral votes from states considered toss ups. Obama is making a big push in Virginia, North Carolina, Colorado, Nevada, Ohio and Indiana while still holding down Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Michigan. He is also revving up the campaign in Florida and Missouri. He may not win those two states but it forces McCain to fight for them.

Four weeks is a long time but if Obama can stay on message and fight in every battleground state, he should be able to pull this out. What Obama has to fight against is the dumbing down of American intellect by George Bush. I wished more job qualifications were based on the ability to say golly, you betcha and having a beer with Joe six pack. I’d be a millionaire.

 

Glad Tithing O Ye Bear Fans

⊆ 10:53 AM by James Manning | ˜ 2 comments »


Over the past two weeks, our beloved have sought scourge our loyalty with putrid performances oh so worthy of our disdain. I, having forsaken good judgment and commons sense, tapped into cumulative greatness of Bears history and crowned this the year that we return to our rightful place as lord and overseer of the gridiron.

My first week prediction of victory was like the discovery of a Minority Report from a Pre-Cog and with the hubris of Odysseus, I laid claim to my greatness. To my despair, such boastfulness is rarely reinforced with continued success and my “Mission Accomplished” sign was met with the cruel resemblance of the Bush Doctrine.

Having spat upon the glory of Red Grange, Walter Payton and Gayle Sayers, our beloved placed before us an indigestible feast of iniquity. For two weeks victory was at hand with only a competent display of fortitude necessary to secure glory. But they failed us and retreated into the filthy bowels of Soldier Field, adorned with the fragrance of hot steamy human feces, soiled in their sackless jockstraps.

With the mighty green winged men coming from the east to devour their rotting carcass, the Monsters of the Midway had to dig deep and find the strength to bring victory to the City of the Wind. So when the winged men from the east came calling, lead by the one they call McNabb, our Bears stood and took a bold swipe and beheaded the vermin in such a way that made King Henry VIII take note. Though we take no joy in what happened to Anne Boleyn, there will be no peace in the NFL kingdom until the Bears have produced a rightful heir to throne. The lineage of George “Papa Bear” Halas must be preserved. And with the victory over the Eagles, we consummated once again with our bride while the sultry sounds of the Super Bowl Shuffle played in the background.

And now we march on to greet the lowly Lions, the ghastly Falcons and repulsive Vikings with a renewed determination to destroy these teams and burn their existence in such a way that not even their pathetic, puny souls will emerge from the ashes.

THIS IS CHI-TOWN!!!!!

 

Fighting Back with Truth

⊆ 8:27 AM by James Manning | ˜ 13 comments »

Now that Sarah Palin has taken the gloves off with her sarcastic-laden speech with very little details as to what she and McCain will do for this country, we would be wise to take a look at her record. She touted her experience as a mayor being “something like a community organizer only with responsibility.” So let’s see what she was responsible for:

As Mayor

During her term in office, Palin cut property taxes and other small taxes on business. But as the Anchorage Daily News points out, “She wasn’t doing this by shrinking government.” During her tenure, the budget of Wasilla (population 5,469 in 2000) “apart from capital projects and debt, rose from $3.9 million in fiscal 1996 to $5.8 million.”


Palin also successfully pushed through a sales tax increase in Wasilla, which went to fund a $15 million sports complex. However, a land dispute over the sight of the complex led to “years of legal wrangling” and cost Wasilla almost $1.7 million, “a lot more than the roughly $125,000 the city would have paid in 1998 if it had closed a deal to buy the property outright.” Wasilla is still facing budget shortfalls from the case today.


When Palin left office in 2002, Wasilla had “racked up nearly $20 million in long-term debt,” or roughly $3,000 of debt per resident.


As a Reformer

As mayor of Wasilla, Palin hired a lobbyist and traveled to Washington annually to support earmarks for the town totaling $27 million. In her two years as governor, Alaska has requested nearly $750 million in special federal spending, by far the a largest per-capita request in the nation. While Palin notes she rejected plans to build a $398 million bridge from Ketchikan to an island with 50 residents and an airport, that opposition came only after the plan was ridiculed nationally as a "bridge to nowhere."


Note: She may have rejected the “bridge to nowhere” but kept the funds!!!!

She is currently under investigation for abusive power. It’s something she is prone to do as she fired individuals whom she felt didn’t support her while mayor of Wasilla. Considering what the Bush administration did to the Justice Department, this is not a good sign.

Advocate for family and children

She claims that parents with special needs children will have an advocate and friend in the White House. Well, as governor, she cut funds for special needs education from $8.26 million to $3.15 million. That’s a great friend to have, in a ‘hunting buddy of Dick Cheney’ kind of way.

Lies, Lies and more Lies

Major legislation by Obama: legislation that expanded efforts to intercept illegal shipments of weapons of mass destruction and to help destroy conventional weapons stockpiles. The legislation became law last year.

Obama on Taxes


The Tax Policy Center, a think tank run jointly by the Brookings Institution and the Urban Institute, concluded that Obama's plan would increase after-tax income for middle-income taxpayers by about 5 percent by 2012, or nearly $2,200 annually. McCain's plan, which cuts taxes across all income levels, would raise after tax-income for middle-income taxpayers by 3 percent, the center concluded.


Obama would provide $80 billion in tax breaks, mainly for poor workers and the elderly, including tripling the Earned Income Tax Credit for minimum-wage workers and higher credits for larger families.


He also would raise income taxes, capital gains and dividend taxes on the wealthiest. He would raise payroll taxes on taxpayers with incomes above $250,000, and he would raise corporate taxes. Small businesses that make more than $250,000 a year would see taxes rise.

In conclusion

Obama’s main charge about McCain is that he represents another four years of Bush/Cheney. We know that McCain is with Bush 90% of the time. McCain has tried to distance himself from the Bush legacy. However, he now has Bush cronies running his campaign, he believes in Bush’s approach to the economy and on how the war should be conducted. He has a neo-con partisan on the ticket with him. So what’s the difference between Bush/Cheney and McCain/Palin – lipstick!!!


http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2008/09/04/ap-attacks-praise-stretch_n_123771.html

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2008/9/3/163229/8631/847/584963

 

Oh God... This is Really Bad

⊆ 9:41 PM by James Manning | ˜ 0 comments »

We are back to the same ole nasty Republican attack machine. Sarah Palin's speech probably went well with hate-mongering righties but haven't this country had enough of this. We now have Dick Cheney in a skirt.

This woman didn't speak once about the economy. She listed putting an airplane on ebay as part of her experience. The Republicans are sick individuals. You can see that in the tone of this convention. Karl Rove has McCain running way too far to the right and Obama is perfectly clear... voting for McCain will be another four years of Bush.

At least now we can take the gloves off and attack Sarah Palin and show her as the fringe neo-con that she is. By Friday the Obama camp should have a nice punch in the face for this self-proclaimed pitbull with lipstick.

I guess I shouldn't be surprised that Republicans actually enjoyed this sophomoric tirade, but we are talking about people that believe Adam and Eve walked dinosaurs. These truly are the end of times.

 

The Palin Pick

⊆ 11:37 AM by James Manning | ˜ 4 comments »

Now that we have had a few days to digest John McCain selecting Sarah Palin as his running mate, it is time to make an analysis with clear eyes. My initial thought was that Sarah Palin was an odd pick and didn’t make any sense. In politics, I have learned, there is always a method to the madness. By the reaction of my right-wing friends, McCain made up the enthusiasm deficit and has co-opted the “change” strategy.

Obviously the talking-points were sent out to combat the inexperience argument that has arisen with this selection. I find touting two terms as a mayor of a town smaller than most Chicago suburbs as executive experience adequate enough for Vice President of the United States far fletched – but the right-wingers are making it in earnest. The additional 18 months as governor of a small state is weak as well. However, the experience argument was one that was not working with Obama and it will not work with Palin. After 8 years of Bush, the American people are looking for something different. Obama represents something different and McCain/Palin ticket represents the same. From that perspective, the Palin pick was a good selection.

There is considerable risk to Palin as McCain doesn’t have a relationship with her and have only 60 days to sell her to the American people. Any stumbles by Palin will be magnified and will reflect more harshly on McCain. Just as Obama has little room for error, Palin’s learning curve will be much smaller. At some point she will have to show some political/policy gravitas that will show the American people that she is ready to take the helm as Commander in Chief should anything happen to McCain. Barak Obama had this same test which he answered on his trip to the Middle East and Europe.

How to Attack Palin

The obvious approach would be a direct attack. That is exactly the wrong approach. It is not to the Democrat advantage to have Palin the central issue in this race. John McCain is still the issue and Obama/Biden should spend very little time talking about Palin. The media will do that and surrogates will scrutinize her stance on the issues. Any missteps by Palin will air on the 24 hour cable channels. This is not to say we should underestimate Sarah Palin. As you recall, George HW Bush won with Dan Quayle as a running mate. But it is to say that Obama/Biden can look past her and remain focused on McCain.

Things to stay away from

There are rumors on the Internet stating that Palin is not the mother, but the grandmother of Trig. Now, that is something that I’d rather not deal with. It is something for the National Enquirer to scope out and if it is true… then I’m still not sure how much it matters.

The latest development regarding the pregnancy of her 17-year old daughter is causing a stir. I do not believe that John McCain was aware of this but although it may something about abstinence-only education, it really doesn’t say much about her as a mother. There are many American parents dealing with teenage pregnancy and it should be left as a personal matter for the Palin family.

The Vice President Debate

Low expectations are a burden but not true when it comes to debates and giving speeches. No on expects Sarah Palin to match Joe Biden’s grasp of foreign affairs. She can come off as a light-weight but not clueless. This is a true gift because it means that she has to stand their and not mangle the names of foreign leaders and show some basic understanding of geo-political issues. So she wins the debate if in the end we are saying “she is not a dunce”. That’s a pretty low bar that most political junkies could hurdle.

In the end…

We will see what happens but the race is still Barak Obama’s to lose.

 

What Would a Black President Mean to America

⊆ 9:11 AM by James Manning | ˜ 8 comments »

This is the question that we so carefully avoid asking. Media pundits discuss the topic in coded language and many conservatives frame the subject in such a way as to stir fear in the American electorate. On any given day you will here terms like “radical”, “is he one of us”, “hard working Americans…” and so on. On the left we have Civil Rights leaders quietly providing tempered support to Obama and others suggesting that they would vote for McCain. Why? What would it mean if America elected Obama as president? Why are so many for fearful and others so hopeful? Lets start with the fears.

Why the Right is a afraid of a black President?
I would be wrong to say that most conservative are racist and this is the basis for their fears. However, I do believe that most racist are conservative so that is a part of it, but I don’t want to paint the entire conservative wing of America with a racist brush but all anecdotal evidence suggest that it is Obama’s race and not his policies that frighten them. The talking heads at Fox News and many rightwing talk show host focus primarily on Obama’s race. It is why they mention his middle name so often. Black American men have always been the pinnacle of the fears of white America. On an episode of the O’Reilly Factor where Bill was discussing immigration, he stated:

“break down the white, Christian, male power structure, which you're a part, and so am I, and they want to bring in millions of foreign nationals to basically break down the structure that we have."


This is the driving fear of a President Obama. The fear of losing absolute power.

Why the Left is afraid of a black President
The Civil Rights movement succeeded because it always had an Ace in the Hole: Human Rights. As progress was made on the Civil Rights front, many of the leaders saw their power and influence wane. My generation and the generation that followed began to question the strategy of Civil Rights organizations that didn’t seem to take into account the progress they made possible. The relevance of its leaders came into doubt. The fear now is that a President Obama would further erode their relevance; not to white America, but to African Americans and other minorities. There is also the legitimate fear that in response to Obama winning, white America will seek to reverse many of the gains made by Civil Rights legislation, using Obama as a means to suggest that all is well in the Republic.

Why the Right would welcome President Obama

The Left’s fear is the Right’s joy. Obama, they believe, would mean that there is no longer a need for Affirmative Action programs. Any claims of racism by minorities would have no legitimacy. Any social program to assist poor African Americans would no longer be necessary because by electing a black man as president, America has remedied its past inequities and the playing field is now level. This is the very claim that is being made with the Arizona ballot initiative end Affirmative Action.

Why the Left would welcome President Obama

Beyond the obvious of ending eight years of Republican rule in the White House, there is a feeling that many of the structural inequities in America will finally have an advocate in Washington. It will also symbolize the crowning jewel of the Civil Rights fight. I grew up hearing that I could do anything I wanted to do, but the President of the United States was the one caveat that stood as a reminder to the reality of racism in this country. When Obama accepts the Democrat nomination, part of the barrier will come down.

Conclusion

I am not sure if Obama will win but this is a perfect test. McCain is the perfect placebo is this case study on America because he does not have an enthusiastic base. This election is truly a reflection on Obama and how comfortable America is with electing a black man. Any other Democrat would win this election going away. So the only think separating Obama from the White House is his skin color and the effectiveness of the right to paint him as the scary black man. Some may believe that a loss would be devastating. Because of McCain’s policies, I believe that to be true.

Obama is a pioneer as is Hillary Clinton. Often times, pioneers do not reap the reward of their effort. Martin Luther King never saw the fruits of his labor. They will be political forces for some time to come. What would a President Obama mean for America? If nothing else, it would that Bill O’Reilly was right in one part: the white male Christian, power structure is breaking down. But instead of immigration – it is hill fellow Americans wielding the hammer.

Technocrati Tags: | |

 

Supporting Obama

⊆ 7:46 AM by James Manning | ˜ 6 comments »

The following is a letter is one meant to inspire Obama supporters.

A reader advisory

This article is my response to a Barack supporter in the United States who was
concerned about the the possibility of colour and race being used surreptitiously in concert with elements of the media, to disguise an attempt to deny Barack Obama a fair opportunity to achieve his destiny. The Presidency of the United States of America.

Dear Barack supporter

To be credible, I need to reveal one or two facts about myself before addressing the subject of your concerns. I am a 68 yr old white male and an Australian citizen of Irish and Scottish heritage! As such I am not eligible to vote in your election. However I support Barack Obama for election as the 44th President of the United States, simply because he is by any standard, the most talented, and qualified candidate from either side of the political divide.

Only one candidate has satisfactorily demonstrated the type of skills and leadership qualities people quite rightfully expect to see in a candidate for the office of President. Specifically, in Obama’s overwhelming favour these include: His sound policy positions, diplomatic skills, political skills, sage judgement, people skills, personal ethics, temperament, proven management skills and of course at 47 yrs, his age advantage, when considering the work load and pressures involved in managing the most demanding job in the world.

Back to the original question! The fact is, we like Barack. Personally I wouldn’t care if he was green, had stripes or that he might be lousy at table tennis. I suppose that last bit is possible! None of this matters. People feel close to Obama. They can see he likes people and genuinely cares for them. He touches us through his natural humanity and in the midst of the political crossfire, we admire his strength, resolve, integrity and even politeness. It’s a rare thing we witness.

People know that his words, while beautiful to contemplate, are not false. We are reassured by his easy demeanour and his truth is reflected in the sincerity of his smile. People feel these things. They are confident in his ability because he communicates a clear understanding as to what needs to be done as President to restore people’s faith in the future. This time people are endowing a special man with their trust in addition to their vote. They sense they have arrived at a special place and time in their country’s history. A time many thought would never happen in their lifetime. And they have made their choice. Obama knows this and is respectful of that great responsibility.

Quite openly he has challenged every American to make a commitment to their own future and that of their country. He has invited them to work with him in solving the country’s problems thereby suggesting that together they can build a brighter future for all Americans. A concept readily embraced by people who are voting for change. It is a willing contract between the people and a man of the people, who if they prevail, will be their next President. Such a pact is historic. People can’t wait to start.

Around the globe people are beginning to feel more safe, more connected and more positive about the future at the prospect of an Obama Presidency. Ask anyone in any country, anywhere. Polls are confirming it. People of all age, race, colour, creed and religion have joined together as one, to work and volunteer, most for the first time, to help bring positive change. The ripple effect of this positive momentum is building like a tsunami as it reaches out and begins to touch the lives of people everywhere. It feels like an election for a world President!

Many years ago I read ” The Power of One” an amazing and inspirational book by the famous Australian author Bryce Courtenay. They made a superb movie based on the book. Those of you who have had the privilege to read it will understand it’s relevance to this article.

Please play the short video before reading the ending.


As human beings seeking a better world, we recognise a gifted leader when we see one.
And as Oprah with deep belief said so aptly. ” He is the One ”

The only colour I see in Barack Obama, is the colour of the future! It is a hue which promises to make the world a better place.
And a Presidency which promises to make America bright and beautiful again.

John Hay
Brisbane. Queensland. Australia
Email: john@tellingthoughts.com
Video: “To the Dreamers” produced by: Akin Salawu - AkinScribe5

Copyright John Hay (All rights reserved).



This is a great letter!!! Go Obama

 

Video: Phil Collins + Eric Clapton

⊆ 6:47 AM by James Manning | ˜ 0 comments »

This is one of my favorite songs by Phil Collins. Having Eric Clapton made it that much better.

 

Politics as Basketball: Primary Analysis

⊆ 8:17 AM by James Manning | ˜ 0 comments »

The Lakers and the Celtics will play for the NBA Championship and I am actually looking forward to watching it. As the Democratic primaries come to an end (thank God), I think it is fitting to use a basketball analogy in my analysis of what occurred between Clinton and Obama.

Kobe Bryant in the greatest player in the game today, but he alone is not great enough to take a team the Finals. In recognizing this, Lakers management traded for Pau Gasol and brought in Derrick Fisher. They put together a decent bench and a solid team was formed. The Celtics did the same thing in bringing in Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen. The Celtics also changed their strategy to focus on defense knowing they had enough talent to score points.

We could consider Team Hillary as the Lakers. She had the best players in the world and really is the storied franchise of politics. Her team could score at will and had all the big stars in attendance to watch her take the championship. Her starters were the best and her basic strategy was to pound the opponent so by halftime, the game would be over. Team Obama came in as underdogs and put together a solid team and formed a strategy to play all four quarters and extend the rotation to utilize all of the players on the bench.

At tip-off, Team Hillary goes down early but is looking at the clock figuring that by halftime (Super Tuesday) they will be up far enough to rest the starters. Team Hillary ignores the pick-and-rolls (Hope and Change), solid defense (Internet donations) and the 10 man rotation (grass roots organizations) employed by Team Obama. As halftime nears (Super Tuesday), Team Hillary is exhausted (low on funds). As the horn ushers in the end of the first half, Team Hillary finds itself in a close game with Team Obama.

Team Hillary comes out the second half with a media blitz stating how their starters are outscoring Team Obama starters and how their organization has more season ticket holders (white working class). This, they claim, is the evidence of a true championship team. But Team Hillary has to rest its starters and finds that their bench, which they never figured on needing, isn’t prepared. Team Obama goes on a run (winning 11 contest in a row) and by the time the starters return (Pennsylvania & Ohio), she’s down and the Commission (Super Delegates) is ready to crown Barak and MVP of the finals.

In the end, Team Hillary starters outscored Team Obama’s starters. (that in primary states, Clinton won 1,557.5 delegates, 16 more delegates than Obama's 1,521.5.) But Team Obama’s bench outscored Team Hillary’s bench (In caucus states, Stewart found, Obama won 366 delegates, or 191 more than Clinton's 175.) Team Hillary paid little attention to their bench and though they may be the storied franchise; have the most season ticket holders; have the most banners hanging from the rafters; it is the final score that matters. It’s not about the team that wins the first and third quarter; or the team who starters scored the most points. It is about the final score. And Team Obama won in the category that matters the most – the delegate count.

 

Two Faces of Conservatism

⊆ 8:26 AM by James Manning | ˜ 7 comments »



At war with Islam or not…

With Bush, the presidential election and the war in Iraq as its backdrop, the divergence of conservatism is amazing. On one side conservatives are pressing as hard as ever in trying to show support for the Iraq war. While this is an understandable position, it flies in the face of those conservatives that believe we are in a war against Islam. So how does one reconcile that we are in a war to bring democracy and stability to a country of Muslims and yet proclaim a war against these very Muslims? Why are we concerned with Mideast peace when we could simply have Israel rid the West Bank of Palestinians and be done with it? I do not understand this and I would like someone to explain it to me.

Winning... by how much we’ll never know

This winning in Iraq thing is something that I am debating on Dee’s blog. I hear the minions on Fox News state how we are winning in Iraq but the odd part about this is that we’re not fighting in Iraq. We’re standing in the gap to ensure that the real fight that is taking place doesn’t escalate. It is the Sunni and Shia sects that are fighting with the Kurds standing idly by waiting to proclaim independence. Outside of body counts, no one is providing the American people exactly what we are getting for our weekly $5 billion investment. Security? I imagine that we could achieve the same level of security we have today for far less money and strain on our military.


Supporting the troops…as long as they fight

Here is where the two faces of Conservatism really hit the road. The squabble over adorning patriotic symbols and spew “support the troop” slogans while our men and women in uniform struggle when they return from Iraq. The military is discharging soldiers for “personality dysfunctions” so they can avoid paying disability caused by PTSD. As stated earlier, no one has a problem spending $5 billion a week to send soldiers to war but balk at paying $50 billion over ten years to assist these soldiers after they’ve given their pound of flesh – or arms, legs, brains, and some their lives. How sickening is it to say to a soldier that after 4 years, 2 tours in Iraq, you still have not sacrificed enough to earn tuition cost to a public university? Sad.

More Signs of the Apocalypse... in a scarf

Michelle Malkin, noted right-wing, manic, fuming, windbag conservative blogger took issue with a scarf that Rachel Ray (my current crush focus) wore for a billboard promoting Dunkin Donuts. She suggested in her, “I’m not suggesting” way that Rachel’s choice of apparel may indicate that the Food Channel diva supports terrorist. Michele says the scarf is a kaffiyeh - a scarf worn by women in the Middle East.

The funny thing about this is that these same Conservatives get on black people for seeing conspiracies in everything. Ok… the government created to AIDS to kill black people – they laugh it off. Police brutality is a problem. They don’t see it – even when it comes with a video of a black man getting his azz whooped on a LA street or a plunger is pulled from the anus of a black man. But now we have a moonbat “suggesting” that the type of scarf someone wears could place them into the terrorist sympathizer camp. Watch out! Your next trip to Ambercrombie & Fitch could get you labeled and enemy combatant. I guess opium and terrorist aren’t the only exports from Afghanistan that we need to worry about.

So sad!!!

 

Card Services Scam

⊆ 3:00 PM by James Manning | ˜ 19 comments »

Calling Scam

I received a call from today and when I answered it a voice recording stated that they had information regarding my credit card and could lower my interest rate. The recording instructed me to press “1” for a representative. I did that and a man came on the line and said he was with a company that helped people with more than $4000 in credit card debt. I’m not one of those persons so I asked him what company he was with. I got no answer. At that point I hung up.

I called the number back and got a disconnected message. Me being me, I did some snooping on the Internet and found out some information.

There are several scams offering unsuspecting consumers a reduced interest rate on their credit cards. They will ask you for you high balance credit card number and charge you a fee between $700 and $1000. This is a scam and you should not fall for. The golden rule still applies:

1. Do not provide your information to a stranger.
2. If it sounds too good to be true… it is.
3. Ask questions.

There are several phone numbers that they use but the most popular one is 954-424-9037

Check out these sites for more information:

http://honeypot.net/scam-calls-card-services
http://grantingersoll.com/2008/05/08/follow-up-on-consumer-services-and-warranty-activation-services-phone-calls/

 

Comic Strip: Scene One... Act One

⊆ 8:41 AM by James Manning | ˜ 1 comments »

 

Thoughts on Barak & Rev. Wright

⊆ 10:03 AM by James Manning | ˜ 4 comments »

At the end of every church service, the pastor of a southside church I attended would say, 'govern yourself accordingly'. This is what Rev. Wright failed to do. The Press Club is not a Sunday morning sermon and they are not apt to respond as a black congregation would. They brought him in looking for cannon fodder and it was his job to leave them with understanding. He was given the world stage to finally present himself in such a way that he would leave as a teacher and prophet and not as a demagogue or as an albatross around the neck of Barak Obama. He failed miserably.

For the past several months I have supported Rev. Wright and Barak Obama. I still support Rev. Wright but there comes a time when a friend must be set aside. Barak Obama is running for the most important and most powerful political office in the world. He will represent the will of the American people – all of her people. And her people have a problem with race relations. We know that. We have seen how they have used Barak’s middle name in disparaging ways. We have seen how they used a photo of him in native African apparel as a means to frighten people. And we have seen how they use Rev. Wright’s words as a means of communicating that Barak Obama is really a black separatist and cannot be trusted. This is the way of the world but we must be smart in combating the lies.

Rev. Wright spoke some truth at the Press Club. However, his rant about defending the black church was off. His statement about the government creating AIDS to kill black people is off. As an aside: the reason that black people can believe the government created AIDS is because the government has in the past purposely infected black people. Remember the Tuskegee Syphilis Experiment? Finally, giving the Q-Dog sign might not raise an eye in the black community but on the world stage, it will.

As intelligent and articulate as we know Rev. Wright to be, he failed himself and Barak Obama. The Press Club wanted tabloid snippets and they should have been given intellectual diatribes. Questions should have been answered in such a way as to raise the dialogue from mere politics to the mental condition of this country with regards to race. That didn’t happen and it was a lost opportunity on the reverend’s part.

Barak Obama had no choice but to distance himself from his pastor. There are black people that will disagree with his move but again, Barak Obama is running for President of the United States. There is more at stake and sacrifices must be made for the greater good. In the black community, we tend to want to criticize individuals that don’t stay “down”. That leads to some placing themselves in situations that are not healthy for them. See Michael Vick. See Pacman Jones. And if he is not smart, we’ll see Derrick McFadden fall.

I’m sure it hurt Obama to have to denounce his pastor in such a public manner. I have family that I don’t care to be around but I would hate to have to make an announcement to the world about them. This is the way of politics. But this issue had to put to rest before the General Election and to make the Superdelegates comfortable. There will be some that will say Obama waited too long but they weren’t voting for him anyway. There was a need to have Rev. Wright speak for Rev. Wright and not the Obama campaign. It is now time to focus on the task at hand and that is winning this nomination and beating McCain in November. The attempts to use Rev. Wright as a weapon against Obama will continue - that’s politics. For the sake of both men and this country, I hope they use wisdom and govern themselves accordingly.

 

This Can't Fly

⊆ 10:35 AM by James Manning | ˜ 2 comments »

I am about sick and tired of these airlines. I had a membership with ATA that would allow me to earn a free round trip ticket after 6 trips. The sorry airline decided to stop servicing Chicago when I reach four flights. I then turned to Southwest Airlines and they did a 2fer on me. Not only did they change their price structure that basically wiped out the minimum wage brothers special, they didn’t add any food for the a flight that now cost $100 more than it did this time last year. To make matters worse, they still haven’t fully changed the cattle call seating system. And we don’t have to mention the safety lapses. I tell you, these airlines are pissing on us like a 14 year old girl at an R Kelly summer camp retreat.


I am now a member with American Airlines and my experience with them has not been a very good one. I have yet to leave out of O’hare on time. In fact, I now go to the airport with the belief that I am entering the bowels of hell from which I may never return. The airlines cannot blame high fuel prices for their shoddy customer service.

 

Proof that Words Matter

⊆ 1:53 AM by James Manning | ˜ 2 comments »



You have got to be kidding me. I was listening to NPR’s Talk of the Nation and Bill Cunningham was explaining his use of Barak Obama’s middle name. On the show Bill suggest that the use of Barak’s middle name was his way of honoring Sen. Obama in the same vein that one would say John F. Kennedy, or Franklin D. Roosevelt.

Now, how does one refer to Sen. Obama as “Now we have a hack, Chicago-style Daley politician who is picturing himself as change. When he gets done with you, all you’re going to have in your pocket is change”. Then go out of his way to highlight Sen. Obama’s ethnicity with this rant: “he great prophet from Chicago takes the stand and the world leaders who want to kill us will simply be singing Kumbaya together around the table with Barack Obama.”

This is the same man who said on his radio show:

"it would be a shock" if Barack Mohammed Hussein Obama can be elected the president of this country in these difficult terrorist times."

Yet, Bill Cunningham would have us believe that his use of Hussein, Sen. Obama’s middle name, was not a slight of hand insult to disparage Obama’s ethnicity and connect Obama to Islam. Of course the righties were up in arms using their usual straw man argument about being PC. “What’s wrong with mentioning his middle name,” they whine.

Imagine if you will that you are having a heated discussion with an unfriendly individual and in the middle of the verbal exchange the gentlemen pulls out a gun and he places it on the table in front of you. To any sane person, this would be considered an act of intimidation. You would not accept an explanation that he pulled the gun out because he wanted to show it to you because you seem like the type that enjoyed guns. And the fact that conservatives are insulting our intelligence with their defense of Bill Cunningham, further demonstrates why no sane black American should be a part of the Republican Party.

 

Words, Food for Thought

⊆ 8:26 AM by James Manning | ˜ 3 comments »



I love dining and my selection of restaurants is based on the food, the ambiance because the experience is just as important as the food. I’m not at all interested about the workings of the kitchen so long as what comes out of the kitchen is a delight to my taste buds. Chicago has a lot of restaurants that serve the purpose of ridding one’s appetite, but only a select few have a certain je ne sais quoi about them.

It seems odd how the biggest complaint giving regarding Barak Obama is that he’s a great orator with no substance. Recently, Hillary Clinton stated that “Speeches don’t put food on the table. Speeches don’t fill up your tank, or fill your prescription, or do anything about that stack of bill.”

The GOP has placed aim on this same issue. They do so because let’s face it, no one would mistake Hillary Clinton or John McCain for great speakers. But what is missing in the attack of Obama is that words actually do matter.

If you think about the great leaders of our time, a familiar trait that many had was the ability to communicate with their followers. Not only did they communicate well with constituents and supporters, they inspired them. We don’t pay much attention to Winston Churchill’s day to day decisions during the war. But we do remember his speeches. Ronald Reagan wasn’t called the “Great Trickle Down Economics President”, he is referred to as “The Great Communicator”.

Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X, John F Kennedy… all had a vision, political philosophies and ideas… but what set them apart was their ability to inspire, to lead to connect with masses. A leader must have the ability to influence people to action. There are no shortages of ideas and great leadership is not measure by how many bullet points one can come up with to solve problems.

There is a reason why millions tune in to watch the State of the Union address then completely ignore the Ways and Means Committee meetings that airs on C-Span: we have no interest in seeing the making of sausage nor do we want to listen to someone describe how sausage is made. Tell us about the dish. Tell us about the ambience; the music playing in the background, the wine selection. Inspire me to the point where I am anticipating a great dining experience.

I have no doubt that all of the candidates are capable of slaughtering a cow (i.e. present legislations to Congress) and we have two candidates saying with a bad Russian accent, “Come, watch me slaughter fat cow and I feed you,” and another saying “Our featured meats are seasoned to perfection over an open flame to capture their individual flavor to be savored in atmosphere reminiscent of the Rio Grande do Sul of Southern Brazil.”

All serving steak… but I’m dining at the Rio Grande do Sul… bone apatite.

Note: Part of the description comes from the Fogo De Chao website. If you have never dined at a Brazilian steakhouse, you are missing out on one of life’s greatest pleasures.

 

Conservalib: Pest Control

⊆ 9:35 AM by James Manning | ˜ 2 comments »

Lately the CEO’s of ConservaLib have been receiving a lot of hate mail from pundits and from supporters of John McCain and Hillary Clinton. Many are upset at our pursuit of promoting independent thought and a principled approach to selecting a candidate to the electorate. We realize that they are just haters who are probably in need of a good night of boinking. But none the less, it is our duty to respond to these lowly sex deprived, pathetic little peons trying to get all up in our glamour.

In determining how we should respond, we found that the political environment in which we operate restricts the violent retribution to which we are accustomed. There is also the reality that there are many politicians, political junkies and political bloggers facing the same predicament with haters so a more universal response is in order.

Below you will find images that will help you effectively communicate with the haters and save emotional energy and type space for more productive use. Feel free to use them as you please.

Happy campaigning from your friends at ConservaLib.

CLICK ON THE IMAGE SEE THE LARGER IMAGE














 

Enthusiasm vs. Apathy

⊆ 11:03 AM by James Manning | ˜ 7 comments »

There is an obvious distinction between the enthusiasm and apathy that doesn’t require much discussion. Enthusiasm connotes excitement in or for a particular event, subject or individual. Apathy is an indifference to or a lack of emotion for an event, subject or individual.

When it comes to political support, enthusiasm is a politician’s best friend next to incumbency. If a politician has neither, then pragmatism is the next best thing. The lowest forms of support are the anti-vote and apathy. The wild card support is the enthusiastic anti-vote which is a totally unreliable because those supporters can so easily become apathetic. And here is where we find Mitt Romney and John McCain.

At this stage of the race, John McCain has garnered pragmatic support. He is the likely nomination so many in the GOP are hedging their bets and throwing him their support. Mitt Romney, who has failed to generate an enthusiastic support, has now become the anti-McCain candidate. McCain, for his part, has mostly pragmatic supporters which is why he leads in the polls.

The problem I see with Mitt Romney’s campaign is that he is always running against McCain or against Hillary Clinton. This type of campaign gives the pragmatic voter an out because they are allowed a, “That may be true but…” statement to validated their pragmatic decision. He does nothing to motivate voters to support him because of what he stands for that is not in contrast to his opponents. Yes, he does have to at times contrast himself with McCain but as you see with McCain and Huckabee, they speak about what they believe in and what they stand for and if you disagree, then so be it. Rudy Giuliani ran on his own terms (as flawed as it was), but he did have an enthusiastic following.

Viewing what is happening on the Democrat side, there are excited voters and since the candidates are very close on policy, it is the intangibles that are motivating people to go to the polls and vote for either Clinton or Obama. If Mitt Romney were to win the Republican nomination, his largest block of voters would be the anti-Democrat or anti-Hillary block. That will not be enough to overcome the overwhelming excitement on the Democrat side. John McCain will have the same problem only he would face an anit-McCain block from his own Party.


No matter what the talking heads and prognosticators tell you, the Presidential election is more about ideology and emotions and has very little to do with policy. Most of us know that any policy presented by the President will go through a bureaucratic blender called the Congress. Though I am no fan of Ronald Reagan with regards to his policy, I readily admit that he was able to inspire Americans and that has been his lasting legacy. I seriously doubt we’ll get that from Mitt Romney and that is why he will not be the next president.

 

It's Official: I Won't Support Hillary

⊆ 8:15 AM by James Manning | ˜ 6 comments »

I thought about this long and hard and I’ve come to the conclusion that I will not support Hillary Clinton for President unless Barak Obama is her running mate. This is a matter of principle because her campaign has systematically destroyed the excitement that our Party had. We were happy with all three candidates and would support whoever pulled off the nomination. But after Iowa, Hillary panicked and took to gutter politics.

With Rudy Giuliani out of the race, I have no stern opposition to any Republican candidate. I think any of them will be better than Bush and I’m willing to give them the benefit of the doubt. Also, I’m not about to vote for the lesser of two evils crap.

We have already seen that hatred for a candidate does not eclipse the apathy a Party has for its own nominee. That is why the Conservatives distrust of McCain will dampen the impact of their hatred for Mrs. Clinton. The Democrats were a lock for this election cycle and the Clintons destroyed.

Unless they do some serious outreach, they will not get my support come November.

 

Bush, Obama and Rudy

⊆ 9:43 AM by James Manning | ˜ 5 comments »

State of the Union

It was nice to see Bush end his last State of the Union speech. It is the end of an era that I should hope is never repeated. I have never supported the President so it will come as no surprise that I didn’t think much of the speech. Basically, it was a laundry list of things he hasn’t accomplished and would like to now. For instance, he informed Congress to send him a bill with a 50% reduction in earmarks or face a veto. This from a President that didn’t veto a single spending bill until May 2007 after Congress added timelines to the Iraqi occupation.

Overall, I think the Bush Presidency is a failure on many levels. Most of it could probably be blamed on his management style of letting his subordinates have their way and stubbornly supporting them even when the evidence suggested otherwise.

Onward Obama

Obama’s victory in South Carolina was impressive but even more impressive is the events in the wake of Bill and Hillary’s attack of Obama. Though many may not feel that endorsements carry a lot of weight, as surely the case with celebrity endorsements, political endorsements are something entirely different. Endorsements by Ted Kennedy and now Democrat Governor Kathleen Sebelius of Kansas do carry a lot of weight, particularly when it comes to political infrastructure and access to power brokers.

Barak Obama will have some support in the East Coast and will surely take Illinois and Georgia. He will then have to make some inroads in the Plain states and has gotten some important backing in Arizona. After Super Tuesday, Barak Obama should garner enough support to win the nomination even with Hillary having the support of the Party establishment.

Good Bye Rudy

I’ve never supported you and I am so glad that you made the idiotic move of not running in the early states. There are some that want to blame the media for ignoring you but you my friend did this to yourself. You are a one-note Johnny and even your record on 9/11 is suspect. Your appearances in the debates were lackluster and you pandering in Florida is transparent. I think you should refund everyone that paid you to speak to them on the aspects of leadership because you have proven that you don’t know what the hell you are talking about. I have only two words to say to you… I’ll Holla!!!