Wednesday, November 12, 2008

BREVITAS

WORD

Labor is prior to, and independent of, capital; that, in fact, capital is the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital and deserves much the higher consideration. - Abraham Lincoln


OBAMALAND

Jeffrey Goldberg, Atlantic -
The rumor about Obama's "Jewish problem" was one of the non-stories of the campaign. Approximately 78 percent of the Jews who voted went for Obama. Obviously, they didn't buy it. It is interesting, however, that if you had been able to tell people that "the guy who will be running the White House is essentially an Israeli," it may have quieted some people down. . . Emanuel is emotionally tied to Israel in ways that very few politicians are.

Fark on the president-elect's meeting with Bush:
Obama is already sitting down with an unpopular, aggressive world leader without preconditions

OUTLYING PRECINCTS

PR Watch - Barack Obama has been named Advertising Age's 2008 Marketer of the Year for the simplicity, consistency and relevance of his campaign. Hundreds of marketers, agency heads and marketing-services vendors attending the 2008 annual Association of National Advertisers conference voted for Obama's campaign over ad campaigns by major companies like Apple, Zappos, Nike and Coors. Ad Age called Obama's historic November 4 win the "biggest day in the history of marketing," saying marketers have a lot to learn from his campaign. At a time when 70% of the population thought the country was headed in the wrong direction, Obama adopted a simple slogan of "Change" that never varied throughout his campaign, while his competitors tried for months to find similarly simple yet powerful messages. Hillary Clinton first tried the slogan "Experience," then shifted to "Countdown to change," and then used "Solutions for America," while the McCain campaign tried on a long list of labels like "Maverick," "Straight Talker," "Conservative" and "Hero." By the time the McCain campaign settled on "Country First," it was too late. The relentless focus on "change" pressured Mr. Obama's opponents to talk about how their changes would differ from his, rather than focus on their strengths, like their experience, track records and relationships with world leaders.

Matthew Garrahan, Financial Times -
Hispanic voters helped clinch a number of swing states for Barack Obama, redrawing the political map in the process. A new generation of Latino voters in Nevada, New Mexico and Colorado flocked to Mr Obama, overturning long-held assumptions about their willingness to back a black candidate. In Florida, newly registered Mexican and Colombian voters also backed Mr Obama, overwhelming the state's traditionally right-leaning Cuban American electorate. In Virginia, hardly known for its immigrants, a surge in registrations since 2004 ensured 150,000 Hispanics made a crucial contribution to Mr Obama's slim victory there. . . The increase in the Latino vote is coming from two directions. More Latinos are turning 18 than any other ethnic group in the country: Latinos comprise about 12 per cent of the electorate but 18 per cent of young voters.. . .
Mr Obama enjoyed overwhelming support from young Latinos, with 76 per cent of those aged 18-29 backing him, according to CNN exit polls.

Overheard on Washington's subway: Woman One: Dammmnnn girl! This Metro so damn crowded. . . Woman Two: Shit yeah. Too many people here. . . Woman One: Don't worry, Obama gonna take care of that.

WATCHING THE COUNT

Brad Blog - This just in from Alaska, where thousands of new ballots continue to be found each day, since it was first reported that turnout in 2008 was 11% lower than in 2004. Thousands of ballots, nearly a third of them, remain uncounted nearly a week after the election. Their numbers could explain the strange results so far in races --- such as those of the felonious Sen. Ted Stevens (R) and the under-investigation Rep. Don Young (R) --- for which pollsters had predicted decisive losses for the Republicans. Even with the newly acknowledged ballots and even with Alaska's once-popular Gov. Sarah Palin and popular Sen. Barack Obama both on the Presidential ballot this year, turnout numbers still remain slightly below those from 2004. The Anchorage Daily News, with numbers somewhat out of date from those now posted below, called it all "puzzling" over the weekend, and pointed out much of what we've detailed here in previous posts.

WAR DEPARTMENT

Bryan Bender, Boston Globe -
A senior Pentagon advisory group, in a series of bluntly worded briefings, is warning President-elect Barack Obama that the Defense Department's current budget is "not sustainable," and he must scale back or eliminate some of the military's most prized weapons programs. The briefings were prepared by the Defense Business Board, an internal management oversight body. It contends that the nation's recent financial crisis makes it imperative that the Pentagon and Congress slash some of the nation's most costly and troubled weapons to ensure they can finance the military's most pressing priorities.

Those include rebuilding ground forces battered by multiple tours to Iraq and Afghanistan and expanding the ranks to wage the war on terrorism. The briefings do not specify which programs should be cut, but defense analysts say that prime targets would probably include the new F-35 fighter jet, a series of Navy ship programs, and a massive Army project to build a new generation of ground combat vehicles, all of which have been skyrocketing in cost and suffering long development delays.

FREEDOM & JUSTICE

Washington Post -
In the summer of 1962, FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover was scanning his morning Washington Post when an item on Page A15 caught his eye. Norman Mailer's most recent article in Esquire magazine had mocked Jacqueline Kennedy for, among other things, being excessively soft-spoken for a first lady. Hoover scribbled a note: "Let me have memo on Norman Mailer."
Over the next 15 years, FBI agents closely tracked the grand and mundane aspects of the acclaimed novelist's life, according to previously confidential government files. Agents questioned his friends, scoured his passport file, thumbed through his best-selling books and circulated his photo among informants. They kept records on his appearances at writers conferences, talk shows and peace rallies. They noted the volume of envelopes in his mailbox and jotted down who received his Christmas cards. They posed as his friend, chatted with his father and more than once knocked on his door disguised as deliverymen.. . . The bureau's first confidential memo on Mailer, dated June 29, 1962, noted that the writer "admitted being a 'Leftist' " and said that he had described the FBI as a "secret police organization" that should be abolished.

INDEX OF RELEASED FBI FILES ON PROGRESSIVES, ARTISTS ETC

DRUG BUSTS

Phil Leggiere, Don't Tase Me Bro'
- A Port Lucie, Fla. teenager was playing a joke on his 13 year old friend, pretending he had a bag of pot. Police charge him with: possession of a counterfeit controlled substance with the intent to deliver.

HUNGER

Ecosalon
- The United Nations' Food and Agriculture Organization stated that it would only take $30 billion a year to launch the necessary agricultural programs to completely solve global food insecurity. (Severe hunger afflicts 862 million people annually.) $30 billion sounds like a lot of money, but considering we've just bailed out Wall Street to the tune of nearly a trillion, it's trifling. . . . Global military and arms trade expenditures hit high at about $1 trillion annually. Approximately $540 billion is spent by the United States alone. . . . The United States Department of Energy spends $23 billion yearly just to develop and maintain nuclear warheads.. . . The U.S. Congress has approved $44 billion of U.S. funds for Iraqi construction projects . . . $30 billion was spent on Homeland Security in 2008, and they're requesting $35 billion for 2009.

ECO CLIPS

Inhabitat -
Recently New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg proposed that NYC begin charging shoppers 6 cents for each plastic bag issued at the register. The policy . . . comes several months after Ireland introduced a similar tax that cut the use of plastic bags by 94%. . . The proposal differs from recent measures in Los Angeles and San Francisco, where plastic bags are being banned for certain uses, such as grocery shopping. . . If they are looking for an example, they need only go to the IKEA store in Brooklyn, where a small charge of 5 cents per bag cut the demand by half.

THE MIX

Some gay activists
used the term 'nigger' against black passers by during a demonstration in Sacramento. The anger was directed at blacks for their role in approving California's Proposition 8 which outlaws gay marriages.

GREAT MOMENTS IN BRITAIN

Telegraph, UK -
Her fellow clergy may have turned the other cheek when they saw their new female vicar wore leather jackets and rode a motorbike. But when the Rev Teresa Davies admitted after a Christmas lunch that she and her husband had an open relationship and enjoyed wife-swapping holidays in the south of France, her colleagues' Christian ideals of tolerance and forgiveness were tested to the limit.

Her parish also took objection when the 37-year-old mother-of-two also held three church services while drunk, smelling of alcohol and swaying from side to side, with the result that the choir "fell apart under her direction". At a tribunal, Oxford-educated Mrs Davies was found to have "acted in a manner that is unbecoming or inappropriate to the office and work of a clerk in holy orders" and was barred from ministry for 12 years.

FURTHERMORE. . . .


Auto 123 - We've spotted GM testing a vehicle for a very specific customer and this may very well be the strangest, most unique test car we've ever seen. While we haven't been able to get anyone to comment officially on this vehicle, privately we've been told this is in fact the next-generation "Cadillac One" presidential limo.

We think this behemoth might actually be more of a truck than a limo. With so much armor being added, it appears GM may have needed a medium-duty truck chassis like the Topkick platform. . . As far as powertain, all we can say for sure is that it sounded like a very large diesel was under the hood. Possibly a V8 Duramax. Style-wise, we can see bits and pieces from a few different Cadillac models. Xenon headlights from the Escalade adorn the front while the rear seems to have some STS parts. We can also see holders on the top of the front fenders where two small American flags would traditionally go. The doors on this limo are absolutely astounding. We'd guess they are at least 8 inches)thick!

Rules of Thumb - Driving for 30 miles at 75 mph will get you someplace 5 minutes sooner than driving 30 miles at 50 mph. Your chances for death in an accident at 75 mph are 50% greater than at 50 mph.

GREAT MOMENTS IN GOVERNMENT ADVICE

2 Comments:

At November 13, 2008 12:40 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Re: Rules of Thumb. At 50 mph it would take 36 minutes to travel 30 miles. At 75 mph it would take 24 minutes. That is a 12 minutre difference. If the writer can't do the math on a simple time distance equation, why would I trust his ability to understand statistics correctly. To me that's 12 minutes less exposure to potential accidents by driving faster.

 
At November 13, 2008 1:59 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"The anger was directed at blacks for their role in approving California's Proposition 8 which outlaws gay marriages."

You wanted this in so much you were willing to anonymously source an interracial incident. Why is it you want juries to be fully informed, but not your readers?

Prop H8 wasn't put over by an "Obama surge" of new voters, it was older whites who felt that making civil rights subject to majority vote was an enjoyable moral pastime.

 

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