Tuesday, September 30, 2008

VP Debate: The Fix is in!

VP debate "moderator" PBS's Gwen Ifill is releasing a pro-Obama book just before the inauguration that focuses on blacks who are 'forging a bold new path to political power' Click on title for a link to the story.

Amazon.com's description of the book to be released January 20th, 2009:

In THE BREAKTHROUGH, veteran journalist Gwen Ifill surveys the American political landscape, shedding new light on the impact of Barack Obama’s stunning presidential campaign and introducing the emerging young African American politicians forging a bold new path to political power.

Ifill argues that the Black political structure formed during the Civil Rights movement is giving way to a generation of men and women who are the direct beneficiaries of the struggles of the 1960s. She offers incisive, detailed profiles of such prominent leaders as Newark Mayor Cory Booker, Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick, and U.S. Congressman Artur Davis of Alabama, and also covers up-and-coming figures from across the nation. Drawing on interviews with power brokers like Senator Obama, former Secretary of State Colin Powell, Vernon Jordan, the Reverend Jesse Jackson, and many others, as well as her own razor-sharp observations and analysis of such issues as generational conflict and the "black enough" conundrum, Ifill shows why this is a pivotal moment in American history.

THE BREAKTHROUGH is a remarkable look at contemporary politics and an essential foundation for understanding the future of American democracy.

I wonder if she will sell more books if Obama wins... you think so?

Michelle Malkin's take:

Ifill and her publisher are banking on an Obama/Biden win to buoy her book sales. The moderator expected to treat both sides fairly has grandiosely declared this the "Age of Obama." Can you imagine a right-leaning journalist writing a book about the "stunning" McCain campaign and its "bold" path to reform timed for release on Inauguration Day -- and then expecting a slot as a moderator for the nation's sole vice presidential debate? ......

During the Democratic National Convention, Ifill offered her neutral analysis on NBC News before Michelle Obama's speech: "A lot of people have never seen anything that looks like a Michelle Obama before. She's educated, she's beautiful, she's tall, she tells you what she thinks and they hope that she can tell a story about Barack Obama and about herself."

During the Republican National Convention, the PBS ombudsman fielded numerous complaints about Ifill's coverage of Sarah Palin's speech. Wrote Brian Meyers of Granby, Ct.:

"I was appalled by Gwen Ifill's commentary directly following Gov. Sarah Palin's speech. Her attitude was dismissive and the look on her face was one of disgust. Clearly, she was agitated by what most critics view as a well-delivered speech. It is quite obvious that Ms. Ifill supports Obama as she struggled to say anything redemptive about Gov. Palin's performance. I am disappointed in Ms. Ifill's complete disregard for journalistic objectivity."

Congressman Wadlen: Bailout Bill Courage

Everyday our adult children make their mother and I proud of them. However, once in a while they so something that stands out. In the face of our present economic crisis our son has been outspoken in his support for the "bail out" to avert economic meltdown. Yesterday he posted on his blog a copy of an email he sent to our Congressman Greg Walden of Oregon's 2nd Congressional District that includes Medford and most of central and eastern Oregon. He posted this after the House of Representative narrowly voted down the bill with many of our fellow conservative Republicans voting against it. While many were panicking over the bills failure our son took time to thank some one who had cast a vote that took courage. The post is as follows:

I know all the congressional offices are being bombarded with messages
about this latest bailout bill. I know the vast majority are negative on the issue. My congressman, Gregg Walden voted for the bill. I knew better than to call his office and clog up more of his phone lines, so I sent the following e-mail message to his office:

Thank you for your courage
I know your office has probably received much criticism for this latest bailout measure. There are very likely some legitimate complaints about certain aspects of the bill. However, the necessity of the bill mitigates all those concerns. I want to extent my gratitude to Congressman Walden for his support of this bill in the face of such popular reaction. His integrity and courage to vote for this bill will only deepen my enthusiasm for his reelection in November. Best Regards,

I am proud of both my son and Congressman Walden who stood up in a time of cyrises.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Obama's Debate Gaffe:"I have a bracelet too..."

I have a bracelet too, from Sergent...uh...uh..."

In 1992 George Bush made a memorable gaffe when he checked his watch in the middle of the debate. It made it appear that he was impatient speaking to the American people.

In this instance the candidates show the bracelets in remembrance of a soldier, symbolizing just how much they care. Except when Obama mentioned his bracelet he forgot the name of the soldier that he's sought to honor for the past year, and had to look at it to remember the name. The importance of this is it shows Obama wearing the bracelet is more for show than true honoring of this soldier. Obama is big on symbolism but weak on substance. Do we really know where he stands on the issues and what he will really do if President?(Click on the title for a link to the video of the gaffe)

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Comparison of original Paulson bailout to compromise proposal

House Republican Whip Roy Blunt's office provides a side-by-side comparison of Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson's original Wall Street bailout proposal, the Democrats amendments and additions and the resulting final compromise by Democrats, Republicans and Treasury negotiators worked out over the weekend.

Bob Dylan Live 1964

What a wonderful trip back to the folk era of the early 1960's. Yesterday before the Oregon game with Washington State on TV I drove over to Ashland to purchased this double CD set issued in 2004 based up tapes of the 1964 concert 40 years before.The concert was On October 31 (Halloween)at Philharmonic Hall in New York City. As the booklet that accompanies the CD states:
"On Halloween night, 1964, a twenty three year old Bob Dylan spellbound an adoring audience in Philharmonic Hall in New York.... Many of the songs, although less than two years old were so familiar that the crowd knew every word. ....Dylan played his heart out...."

This was before Dylan went electronic and it was just Dylan and his guitar and harmonica. If you want to see what it was like to be excited about folk music in the 1960's this is the album to buy. John Baez appeared at the concert and sings four songs with Bob. The entire concert is on this on this Album. I am generally not a fan of Dylan's "live albums" because he tends to never sing his songs like they are on his studio albums .In this case with one exception they are often improved.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

"...have attached the stench of police state tactics to the Obama-Biden campaign"

The following is a press release issued today by Missouri Governor Matt Blunt:

Saturday, September 27, 2008
Contact: Jessica Robinson, 573-751-0290


Gov. Blunt Statement on Obama Campaign’s Abusive Use of Missouri Law Enforcement

JEFFERSON CITY - Gov. Matt Blunt today issued the following statement on news reports that have exposed plans by U.S. Senator Barack Obama to use Missouri law enforcement to threaten and intimidate his critics.

St. Louis County Circuit Attorney Bob McCulloch, St. Louis City Circuit Attorney Jennifer Joyce, Jefferson County Sheriff Glenn Boyer, and Obama and the leader of his Missouri campaign Senator Claire McCaskill have attached the stench of police state tactics to the Obama-Biden campaign.

What Senator Obama and his helpers are doing is scandalous beyond words, the party that claims to be the party of Thomas Jefferson is abusing the justice system and offices of public trust to silence political criticism with threats of prosecution and criminal punishment.

“This abuse of the law for intimidation insults the most sacred principles and ideals of Jefferson. I can think of nothing more offensive to Jefferson’s thinking than using the power of the state to deprive Americans of their civil rights. The only conceivable purpose of Messrs. McCulloch, Obama and the others is to frighten people away from expressing themselves, to chill free and open debate, to suppress support and donations to conservative organizations targeted by this anti-civil rights, to strangle criticism of Mr. Obama, to suppress ads about his support of higher taxes, and to choke out criticism on television, radio, the Internet, blogs, e-mail and daily conversation about the election.

“Barack Obama needs to grow up. Leftist blogs and others in the press constantly say false things about me and my family. Usually, we ignore false and scurrilous accusations because the purveyors have no credibility. When necessary, we refute them. Enlisting Missouri law enforcement to intimidate people and kill free debate is reminiscent of the Sedition Acts - not a free society."

Click on the title for a link to the governors web page

Just think what it will be like if Obama get control of the Justice Department and every U.S. Attorney in the United States!

Paul Newman RIP

"Never Give an inch that was the motto of the Stamper Family of Oregon.... and live it they did"

My favorite Paul Newman movie was "Sometime a Great Notion" (1971) based upon a Ken Kesey novel. Paul Newman stared and directed the movie. Paul Newman and Henry Fonda are the father and grandfather of a non union family of "gyppo loggers on the Oregon Coast near Newport.In spite of a strike they keep on logging and will not be intimidated by the unions and their bully boys. In the process of the dangerous work of logging, Henry Fonda dies, and Paul Newman has one of his arms frozen. At the end of the movie, Newman is floating the logs down the river to the mill with all the union goons watching from the riverside. Newman takes the arm out and straps it to the top of the tug boat, he is using to guide the log's to the mill. The middle finger is sticking out. He has lost his wife, his brother and father and he is taking his logs to market. Never give an inch! I wish it was on DVD!

That's how I remember Paul Newman. RIP

Friday, September 26, 2008

Debate: McCain Won!

In liberal Washington State McCain wins.

A Survey USA poll conducted after tonight's presidential debate found that Washingtonians are nearly split on who won. Forty percent said McCain won while 38 percent said Obama.
Among independents, McCain won by 43 to 34 percent.

Best moment: Obama: I have a bracelet too but I can't remember his name unless I read it off the bracelet. All Show!

Harry Reid....

Democrat Majority Leader in the United States Senate. This is the guy the majority of Democrats in the Senate elected their leader? No wonder nothing gets done!

On to the Debate!

Statement By McCain Campaign On Negotiations

John McCain’s decision to suspend his campaign was made in the hopes that politics could be set aside to address our economic crisis.

In response, Americans saw a familiar spectacle in Washington. At a moment of crisis that threatened the economic security of American families, Washington played the blame game rather than work together to find a solution that would avert a collapse of financial markets without squandering hundreds of billions of taxpayers’ money to bailout bankers and brokers who bet their fortunes on unsafe lending practices.

Both parties in both houses of Congress and the administration needed to come together to find a solution that would deserve the trust of the American people. And while there were attempts to do that, much of yesterday was spent fighting over who would get the credit for a deal and who would get the blame for failure. There was no deal or offer yesterday that had a majority of support in Congress. There was no deal yesterday that included adequate protections for the taxpayers. It is not enough to cut deals behind closed doors and then try to force it on the rest of Congress — especially when it amounts to thousands of dollars for every American family.

The difference between Barack Obama and John McCain was apparent during the White House meeting yesterday where Barack Obama’s priority was political posturing in his opening monologue defending the package as it stands. John McCain listened to all sides so he could help focus the debate on finding a bipartisan resolution that is in the interest of taxpayers and homeowners. The Democratic interests stood together in opposition to an agreement that would accommodate additional taxpayer protections.

Senator McCain has spent the morning talking to members of the Administration, members of the Senate, and members of the House. He is optimistic that there has been significant progress toward a bipartisan agreement now that there is a framework for all parties to be represented in negotiations, including Representative Blunt as a designated negotiator for House Republicans. The McCain campaign is resuming all activities and the Senator will travel to the debate this afternoon. Following the debate, he will return to Washington to ensure that all voices and interests are represented in the final agreement, especially those of taxpayers and homeowners.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

"Man Who Never Was"

According to Tony Blankly the Media is covering for Barak Obama who remains an unknown.

The image of Barack Obama that the press has presented is not a fair approximation of the real man. They have consciously ignored whole years in his life, and showed a lack of curiosity about such gaps that bespeaks a lack of journalistic instinct. Thus, the public image of Mr. Obama is of a "Man who never was." I take that phrase from a 1956 movie about a real life WWII British intelligence operation to trick the Germans into thinking the Allies were going to invade Greece, rather than Italy, in 1943.

To read the rest of Tony Blankly's column click on the title for a link.

High Blood Pressure Time !

As if politics and the economy aren't exciting enough now this:

University of Oregon freshman quarterback Darron Thomas was not hurt earlier this morning when a car driven by a teammate spun out of control and crashed into an oncoming vehicle on Gateway Street,
(click on the title for a link to the Register Guard news story.)

Oregon already has three injured QB !

Country 1st, Debate 2nd

See posts below

Report of Bob Schieffer of CBS News on why John McCain left the campaign trail and returned to Washington DC to help solve the country's financial crises.:

BOB SCHIEFFER: I am told, Maggie, that the way McCain got involved in this in the first place, the Treasury Secretary was briefing Republicans in the House yesterday, the Republican conference, asked how many were ready to support the bailout plan. Only four of them held up their hands. Paulson then called, according to my sources, Senator Lindsey Graham, who is very close to John McCain, and told him: you've got to get the people in the McCain campaign, you've got to convince John McCain to give these Republicans some political cover. If you don't do that, this whole bailout plan is going to fail. So that's how, McCain, apparently, became involved.
Continued Schieffer . . .

SCHIEFFER: He has gotten what he wants, he's going to have this meeting, kind of a summit today with the president and Barack Obama. I'm told that the leaders of both parties are getting close to having some kind of a bill. The question, though, is whether rank-and-file Republicans, especially, are going to vote for this.

And that's where McCain comes in.


Obama yesterday on going to his job in Washington DC as a United States Senator in a time of economic crisis. I guess preparing for a debate is more important !

OBAMA: You know, what I'm going to do is, I'm going to -- what I have told the leadership in Congress is that, if I can be helpful, then I am prepared to be anywhere any time.

What I think is important, though, is that we don't suddenly infuse Capitol Hill with presidential politics at a time when we're in the middle of some very delicate and difficult negotiations.

So, you know, I think the message is, if you need us, if I can be helpful, I'm prepared to be there at any point.

Now contrast the above statement by Obama with the following from John McCain made today:

McCain: I'm an old Navy pilot, and I know when a crisis calls for all hands on deck. That's the situation in Washington at this very hour, when the whole future of the American economy is in danger. I cannot carry on a campaign as though this dangerous situation had not occurred, or as though a solution were at hand, which it clearly is not. As of this morning I suspended my political campaign. With so much on the line, for America and the world, the debate that matters most right now is taking place in the United States Capitol — and I intend to join it. Senator Obama is doing the same. America should be proud of the bipartisanship we are seeing.

It has become clear that no consensus has developed to support the Administration's proposal to meet the crisis. I do not believe that the plan on the table will pass as it currently stands, and we are running out of time. So I am returning to Washington to seek five fundamental improvements to this critical legislation.....

Country first!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

John McCain .....Duty First !

See post below

UPDATE: John McCain orders that all of his TV ads be pulled off the air! He is serious about this!

UPDATE 2: Obama puts politics and first will continue to campaign while McCain brokers a deal to save the economy. Reminds me of when John McCain put duty first and supported the surge in Iraq when very few people though it would succeed. As McCain said at the time he would rather lose an election than to lose the war in Iraq.Time for Obama to return to the United States Senate and do the job he is paid for and I don't mean just voting "present".

UPDATE: 3 Democrat Majority Leader Harry Reid of the U.S. Senate playing politics with financial crisis?

Jonathan Martin of the Politico reports:

The Senate Majority Leader is urging McCain to stay away from Washington.

But, as Republicans note, he had a very different message yesterday.

“So we need, now, the Republicans to start producing some votes for us," Reid said at a press conference. "We need the Republican nominee for president to let us know where he stands on what we should do.”

Seems like he's about to get just that.

John McCain.......Man of Action


John McCains Statement:

"America this week faces an historic crisis in our financial system. We must pass legislation to address this crisis. If we do not, credit will dry up, with devastating consequences for our economy. People will no longer be able to buy homes and their life savings will be at stake. Businesses will not have enough money to pay their employees. If we do not act, ever corner of our country will be impacted. We cannot allow this to happen.

Last Friday, I laid out my proposal and I have since discussed my priorities and concerns with the bill the Administration has put forward. Senator Obama has expressed his priorities and concerns.This morning, I met with a group of economic advisers to talk about the proposal on the table and the steps that we should take going forward.I have also spoken with members of Congress to hear their perspective.

It has become clear that no consensus has developed to support the Administration' proposal. I do not believe that the plan on the table will pass as it currently stands, and we are running out of time.

Tomorrow morning, I will suspend my campaign and return to Washington after speaking at the Clinton Global Initiative. I have spoken to Senator Obama and informed him of my decision and have asked him to join me.

I am calling on the President to convene a meeting with the leadership from both houses of Congress, including Senator Obama and myself. It is time for both parties to come together to solve this problem.

We must meet as Americans, not as Democrats or Republicans, and we must meet until this crisis is resolved.I am directing my campaign to work with the Obama campaign and the commission on presidential debates to delay Friday night's debate until we have taken action to address this crisis.

I am confident that before the markets open on Monday we can achieve consensus on legislation that will stabilize our financial markets, protect taxpayers and homeowners, and earn the confidence of the American people. All we must do to achieve this is temporarily set politics aside, and I am committed to doing so.

Following September 11th, our national leaders came together at a time of crisis. We must show that kind of patriotism now. Americans across our country lament the fact that partisan divisions in Washington have prevented us from addressing our national challenges. Now is our chance to come together to prove that Washington is once again capable of leading this country."

Tuesday, September 23, 2008


With all the bad news about the economy I thought I would post two stories below that puts things in perspective. The first is about Capt Bruno de Solenni of the Oregon National Guard and the second is about paratrooper Shawn Murphy and the President of the United States. So Americans stop feeling sorry for yourselves and show some courage!

Capt. Bruno de Solenni R.I. P.

This is about Bruno Desolenni, who lived in Crescent City, Calif., but belonged to the Oregon National Guard, I Picked this post about him over at the National Review Blog:

Capt. Bruno de Solenni, R.I.P. [Kathryn Jean Lopez]

A brother of a friend of mine (Pia) was killed by an IED in Afghanistan this weekend, along with two Afghan interpreters. A fellow soldier was injured. I was just reading a letter Bruno's hometown paper published before he died; what he has to say and who he was and what he sacrificed and the grief his family suffers are reminders of the tremendous burden so few of us carry for freedom:

The bad days are when you put your buddy in a body bag and you don't even recognize him because his limbs are missing and there holes in him everywhere. The miracles are when his last words are, "tell my wife and kids I love them," before he dies in his best friend's arms after struggling for several agonizing minutes to get the words out because there is a fist-size hole in his head.

And last but not least, the best days are when an Afghan comes up to you thanking you for everything that you have done to help them and for making their (home) a better place now that the Taliban are gone.

If anything, this is probably the biggest reason why I proudly enjoy being over here. I can't explain it to anyone and there is no description of what it feels like, but it was the same feeling I got when I was in Iraq as well. And I am sure it's the same feeling that generations of American soldiers before me have gotten as they fought and sacrificed their lives for the freedoms that we enjoy today.

Perhaps the biggest thing that has made being over here much more bearable, is the amount of public support that we have received from people. Getting a care package or a letter of support when you are out in the middle of nowhere from a complete stranger, thanking you, does make the day seem a little better.

I would especially like to thank my Aunt Jan Martin, and The local Troop Support organization who have provided care packages to soldiers serving overseas and have volunteered endless hours of their time and energy making our lives easier. The British soldiers (who don't get anything) are extremely grateful as well.

Along with this, I would especially like to thank the members of the VFW who donated several hundred dollars of G.I. shirts to the company of Afghans that I have been mentoring. You have all truly made my life and my job easier. Without your support, life would not be as pleasant.

Last but not least I would truly like to thank everyone who has supported the soldiers and the efforts toward supporting these wars even when there wasn't an end in sight. Until about 6 months ago there wasn't a news outlet that was saying that the Iraq war was winnable and that this was another vietnam in the making. Had we let the politicians get ahold of this war it would have been.

Fortunately our president (who is not perfect) has stood his ground against the naysayers who deliberately exploited the death of American soldiers for their own political gain, showing no regard to their families and loved ones who are still mourning them to this day.

I can understand what it was like for Vietnam veterans who returned from the war and were spat upon for wearing their uniform and standing up for what they believed in. Unfortunately this is still all-too-true for many of the British soldiers returning home to their own country. There are even certain ethnic religious neighborhoods where they cannot even wear their uniforms because they will be beat up in their own country.

I pray to God we never come to that and thank the fact that what has changed drastically between Vietnam and now is that even if the public doesn't support the war, they still support troops which makes a huge difference. This is especially comforting if you are one of those soldiers walking through the airport wearing your uniform and coming home on leave or returning from a deployment.

Once again, I cannot thank everyone enough for their support and all that they have done …


Capt. Bruno de Solenni

A friend of his who survived the blast writes: “What do you say about Bruno? He was everything in a person I wish I was. Smart, kind and steel core that made him the best Officer on our team. He loved the Afghans and in combat never was there a better Operator or Leader. The man was absolutely fearless.”

Rest in peace. Thank you.

The Reason To Delay Air Force One...

I recived an email from a friend with this true story:

True story, via Seamus, about President Bush on his way to " Asia "

The Value of Service
Commentary by Lt. Col. Mark Murphy
354th Maintenance Group deputy commander

EIELSON AIR FORCE BASE, Alaska -- I learned a big lesson on service Aug. 4, 2008, when Eielson had the rare honor of hosting President Bush on a refueling stop as he traveled to Asia .

It was an event Eielson will never forget -- a hangar full of Airmen and Soldiers getting to see the Commander in Chief up close, and perhaps even shaking his hand. An incredible amount of effort goes into presidential travel because of all of the logistics, security, protocol, etc ... so it was remarkable to see Air Force One land at Eielson on time at precisely 4:30 p.m.--however, when he left less than two hours later, the President was 15 minutes behind schedule.

That's a big slip for something so tightly choreographed, but very few people know why it happened. Here's why.

On Dec. 10, 2006, our son, Shawn, was a paratrooper deployed on the outskirts of Baghdad . He was supposed to spend the night in camp, but when a fellow soldier became ill Shawn volunteered to take his place on a nighttime patrol--in the convoy's most exposed position as turret gunner in the lead Humvee. He was killed instantly with two other soldiers when an IED ripped through their vehicle.

I was thinking about that as my family and I sat in the audience listening to the President's speech, looking at the turret on the up-armored Humvee the explosive ordnance disposal flight had put at the edge of the stage as a static display.

When the speech was over and the President was working the crowd line, I felt a tap on my shoulder and turned to see a White House staff member. She asked me and my wife to come with her, because the President wanted to meet us.

Stunned, we grabbed our two sons that were with us and followed her back into a conference room. It was a shock to go from a crowded, noisy hangar, past all of those security people, to find ourselves suddenly alone in a quiet room.

The only thing we could hear was a cell phone vibrating, and noticed that it was coming from the jacket Senator Stevens left on a chair. We didn't answer.

A short time later, the Secret Service opened the door and President Bush walked in. I thought we might get to shake his hand as he went through. But instead, he walked up to my wife with his arms wide, pulled her in for a hug and a kiss, and said, "I wish I could heal the hole in your heart." He then grabbed me for a hug, as well as each of our sons. Then he turned and said, "Everybody out."

A few seconds later, the four of us were completely alone behind closed doors with the President of the United States and not a Secret Service agent in sight.

He said, "Come on, let's sit down and talk." He pulled up a chair at the side of the room, and we sat down next to him. He looked a little tired from his trip, and he noticed that his shoes were scuffed up from leaning over concrete barriers to shake hands and pose for photos. He slumped down the chair, completely relaxed, smiled, and suddenly was no longer the President - he was just a guy with a job, sitting around talking with us like a family member at a barbeque.

For the next 15 or 20 minutes, he talked with us about our son, Iraq , his family, faith, convictions, and shared his feelings about nearing the end of his presidency. He asked each of our teenaged sons what they wanted to do in life and counseled them to set goals, stick to their convictions, and not worry about being the "cool" guy.

He said that he'd taken a lot of heat during his tenure and was under a lot of pressure to do what's politically expedient, but was proud to say that he never sold his soul. Sometimes he laughed, and at others he teared up. He said that what he'll miss most after leaving office will be his role as Commander in Chief.

One of the somber moments was when he thanked us for the opportunity to meet, because he feels a heavy responsibility knowing that our son died because of a decision he made. He was incredibly humble, full of warmth, and completely without pretense. We were seeing the man his family sees.

We couldn't believe how long he was talking to us, but he seemed to be in no hurry whatsoever. In the end, he thanked us again for the visit and for the opportunity to get off his feet for a few minutes. He then said, "Let's get some pictures." The doors flew open, Secret Service and the White House photographer came in, and suddenly he was the President again. We posed for individual pictures as he gave each of us one of his coins, and then he posed for family pictures. A few more thank yous, a few more hugs, and he was gone.

The remarkable thing about the whole event was that he didn't have to see us at all. If he wanted to do more, he could've just given a quick handshake and said, "Thanks for your sacrifice." But he didn't - he put everything and everyone in his life on hold to meet privately with the family of a Private First Class who gave his life in the service of his country.

What an incredible lesson on service. If the President of the United States is willing to drop everything on his plate to visit with a family, surely the rest of us can do it. No one is above serving another person, and no one is so lofty that he or she can't treat others with dignity and respect.

We often think of service in terms of sacrificing ourselves for someone in a position above us, but how often do we remember that serving someone below us can be much more important? If you're in a leadership capacity, take a good look at how you're treating your people, and remember that your role involves serving the people you rely on every day.

Where do we get such men.......

Monday, September 22, 2008

New York Times Left-Wing Rag !

Steve Schmidt of the McCain/Palin campaign never said words that were more true than what he said today:

Let me first say we are First Amendment absolutists on this campaign. The press and anybody who wishes to cover this race from a blogosphere perspective or from a media perspective is of course constitutionally protected with regard to writing whatever they want to write.
But let’s be clear and be honest with each other about something fundamental to this race, which is this: Whatever the New York Times once was, it is today not by an standard a journalistic organization. It is a pro-Obama advocacy organization that every day attacks the McCain campaign, attacks Sen. McCain, attacks Gov. Palin, and excuses Sen. Obama. There is no level of public vetting with regard to Sen. Obama’s record, his background, his past statements. There is no level of outrage directed at his deceitful ads. This is an organization that is completely, totally, 150 percent in the tank for the Democratic candidate, which is their prerogative to be, but let’s not be dishonest and call it something other than what it is. Everything that is read in the New York Times that attacks this campaign should be evaluated by the American people from that perspective, that it is an organization that has made a decision to cast aside its journalistic integrity and tradition to advocate for the defeat of one candidate, in this case John McCain, and advocate for the election of the other candidate, Barack Obama.

Unfortunately they have a lot of company in the media in this election. What would we do without FOX NEWS, Talk Radio and the Internet. The New York Times is a dying dinosaur who no longer sets the "News Agenda."

What Oregon Fans in Southern Oregon missed !

This is what most Oregon Fans in Southern Oregon missed this on TV week because they do not get Comcast Sports Northwest on Charter Cable or either of the satellite providers.

Cheerleaders of Oregon

Oregon Football Pregame

Oregon Football Boise State @ Oregon

Oregon Football Postgame

Sunday Night Live with Mike Bellotti

Mike Bellotti Press Conference

And numerous replays of all of the above all week.

Comcast Sports Northwest has for the last two weeks been running full page color newspaper ads through out Oregon in an attempt to get consumers to pressure their cable/satellite provider to sign up for Comcast Sports Northwest. These ads are costing them a bundle on top of what they agreed to pay the Ducks. I hope it works out for them and I hope the Ducks have an iron clad agreement so that it is Comcast who has to eat the loss if they can't get widespread distribution for their Duck and Portland Trailblazer programing.

Good by to the Summer of 08

The Oregon Ducks have already played half of their home football games and the grade school kids have been back in school for three weeks but according to the calender it was summer until yesterday. I do love Summer. This summer my wife and I have been eating most of our lunches in the park near our office.Today, it's only 59 degrees outside so we will forgo lunch in the park. I guess summer is really gone. It's been a busy Summer what with our Son coming home from graduate school, the political conventions and the Olympics. Fall has a lot going for it. Football, football and football. There is also this year the Presidential elections. I love the fall foliage but hate to rake leaves.I also dislike the shorting days, the fog and the drop in temperature and the impeding doom of winter.

Miniseries "John Adams" wins 13 Emmys

"John Adams" set an Emmy record Sunday night, with 13 wins overall -- eight Creative Arts awards and five on the prime-time presentation, including outstanding miniseries.Outstanding Art Direction For A Miniseries, Or Movie. The 13 Emmy's are as follows:

1. Outstanding Art Direction For A Miniseries, Or Movie

John Adams • HBO • Playtone in association with HBO Films
Gemma Jackson, Production Designer
David Crank, Supervising Art Director (USA)
Christina Moore, Supervising Art Director (Hungary)
Kathy Lucas, Set Decorator (USA)
Sarah Whittle, Set Decorator (Hungary)

2. Outstanding Casting For A Miniseries, Movie Or A Special

John Adams • HBO • Playtone in association with HBO Films
Kathleen Chopin, C.S.A., Casting Director
Nina Gold, C.D.G., Casting Director
Tracy Kilpatrick, Casting Director

3. Outstanding Cinematography For A Miniseries Or Movie

John Adams • Independence • HBO • Playtone in association with HBO Films
Tak Fujimoto, ASC, Director of Photography

4.Outstanding Costumes For A Miniseries, Movie Or A Special

John Adams • Reunion • HBO • Playtone in association with HBO Films
Donna Zakowska, Costume Designer
Amy Andrews Harrell, Costume Supervisor
Clare Spragge, Costume Supervisor

.5. Outstanding Lead Actor In A Miniseries Or A Movie

John Adams • HBO • Playtone in association with HBO Films
Paul Giamatti as John Adams

6. Outstanding Lead Actress In A Miniseries Or A Movie

John Adams • HBO • Playtone in association with HBO Films
Laura Linney as Abigail Adams

7. Outstanding Prosthetic Makeup For A Series, Miniseries, Movie Or A Special

John Adams • HBO • Playtone in association with HBO Films
Trefor Proud, Department Head Makeup Artist / Special Makeup Effects Artist and Designer
John R. Bayless, Special Makeup Effects Artist
Christopher Burgoyne, Special Makeup Effects Artist
Matthew Mungle, Prosthetic Makeup Designer & Creator

8. Outstanding Miniseries

John Adams • HBO • Playtone in association with HBO Films
Tom Hanks, Executive Producer
Gary Goetzman, Executive Producer
Kirk Ellis, Co-Executive Producer
Frank Doelger, Co-Executive Producer
David Coatsworth, Produced by
Steven Shareshian, Produced by

9. Outstanding Sound Editing For A Miniseries, Movie Or A Special

John Adams • Don't Tread On Me • HBO • Playtone in association with HBO Films
Stephen Hunter Flick, Supervising Sound Editor
Vanessa Lapato, ADR Supervisor
Kira Roessler, Dialogue Editor
Curt Schulkey, Dialogue Editor
Randy Kelly, Sound Effects Editor
Ken Johnson, Sound Effects Editor
Paul Berolzheimer, Sound Effects Editor
Dean Beville, Sound Effects Editor
Bryan Bowen, Sound Effects Editor
Patricio Libenson, Sound Effects Editor
Solange S. Schwalbe, M.P.S.E., Sound Effects Editor
David Fein, Foley Artist
Hilda Hodges, Foley Artist
Alex Gibson, Music Editor

10. Outstanding Sound Mixing For A Miniseries Or A Movie

John Adams • Don't Tread On Me • HBO • Playtone in association with HBO Films
Jay Meagher, C.A.S., Production Mixer
Marc Fishman, Re-Recording Mixer
Tony Lamberti, Re-Recording Mixer

11. Outstanding Special Visual Effects For A Miniseries, Movie Or A Special

John Adams • Join Or Die • HBO • Playtone in association with HBO Films
Erik Henry, Visual Effects Supervisor
Jeff Goldman, Visual Effects Supervisor
Paul Graff, Visual Effects Supervisor
Steve Kullback, Visual Effects Producer
Christina Graff, Visual Effects Producer
David Van Dyke, Visual Effects Producer
Robert Stromberg, Visual Effects Designer
Edwardo Mendez, Compositing Supervisor
Ken Gorrell, Special Effects Coordinator

12. Outstanding Supporting Actor In A Miniseries Or A Movie

John Adams • HBO • Playtone in association with HBO Films
Tom Wilkinson as Benjamin Franklin

13. Outstanding Writing For A Miniseries, Movie Or A Dramatic Special

John Adams • Independence • HBO • Playtone in association with HBO Films
Kirk Ellis, Written By

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Southern Oregon Duck Fans Luck Out ?

I just got back to Medford from the game and it could be said that most Southern Oregon Duck fans who couldn't go to the game lucked out that they did not have to watch on TV the first three quarters of the Oregon football game with Boise State in Eugene. For three quarters the Ducks were outplayed by a team that wanted it more and the Oregon coaches were out coached by the Boise State staff. Fans in Southern Oregon missed the game because the Oregon Sports Network is not broadcast in most of Southern Oregon for the reasons well documented on this blog. The Ducks at the end of three quarters trailed Boise State 37 to 13 in what appeared to be a pathetic disaster. Just as the 3rd quarter was ending the Oregon coaches decided to burn the red shirt year for true freshman QB Darron Thomas. He came into the game and led Oregon on a great comeback that fell just short at 37 to 32. He was fun to watch and those Southern Oregon fans, at least who were at the game, may have seen the future for the Ducks. Let's Go Ducks..... beat Washington State.

Friday, September 19, 2008

College Fooball Weekend

Enough of politics, unless there is a breaking story,the college Football weekend is before us. My University of Oregon Ducks are hosting the Boise State Broncos in Eugene on Saturday for a 12:30PM kickoff. I will be there! After the Pac-10 laid an egg last weekend and the Ducks had to win in double overtime against Purdue this is an important game for the Ducks.Our starting QB is out for at least a week so we will have rotate QBs .... A JC transfer... a good one..... and also a true Freshman. Boise State has had this game on their calender for the last year as a game to showcase their team and they are a dangerous team as Oklahoma found out year before last in the Fiesta Bowl. They run a lot of trick plays and their head coach is a former Duck Coach who would dearly love to win this game. In addition, his defensive coordinator is a former duck player.They are a well coached team. The Duck had better be ready and I know the fans of both teams are looking forward to this game. Unfortunately it will not be on TV in most of Southern Oregon because of the Comcast vs Charter dispute well documented on this blog. I feel sorry for the Duck fans in Southern Oregon who can not be at the game. The weather should be perfect for a football game , partly cloudy with a high about 70 degrees. It will be good to take a brake from the economic and political news of the week and enjoy the game. I love college football and all the hoopla that goes with it. When you get to be my age you realize that there will be a time when the game will go on without me and you lean to enjoy each moment. Lets go Ducks!

Teddy Roosevelt & John McCain

Today John McCain the maverick Republican took on the Democrat and Republican establishment as well as the Wall Street crowd and set forth his plan for reform just as Teddy Roosevelt did in another time of financial crisis. He proposed six reforms to the system summarized as follows:

First, to deal with the immediate crisis, I will lead in the creation of the Mortgage and Financial Institutions trust -- This trust will work with the private sector and regulators to identify institutions that are weak and fix them before they become insolvent. The MFI is an early intervention program to help financial institutions avoid bankruptcy, expensive bailouts and damage to their customers.

Second, I will propose and sign into law reforms to prevent financial firms from concealing their bad practices.

Third, we need regulatory clarity. The lack of transparency in our financial markets went unnoticed by the regulatory agencies scattered throughout Washington charged with protecting the common good. We've got the SEC, the FDIC, the CFTC, the SIPC, the OCC, the Fed. At best, this confusing assortment of regulators and institutions was egregiously lax in carrying out their responsibilities. At worst, they engaged in the old Washington game of guarding their bureaucratic turf, instead of safeguarding the public interest and protecting investors.

Fourth, we must ensure that consumers and investors are protected. Our regulatory system must protect consumers and investors by punishing individuals who engage in fraud, break contracts, or lie to customers -- like the predatory lenders who know you can't afford an adjustable rate mortgage, but mislead you into signing one.

Fifth, in cases where failing companies seek taxpayer bailouts, the Treasury Department will follow consistent policies in deciding whether to guarantee loans.

Finally, the Federal Reserve should get back to its core business of responsibly managing our money supply and inflation.

The full text of his speech is as follows:

If Governor Palin and I are elected in 46 days, we are not going to waste a moment in changing the way Washington does business. And we're going to start where the need for reform is greatest. In short order, we are going to put an end to the reckless conduct, corruption, and unbridled greed that have caused a crisis on Wall Street.

Here and all across our country, people are wondering what exactly is happening on Wall Street. And with good reason, they want to know how their government will meet the crisis. Clear answers are hard to come by in Washington.

As Senator Obama's leader in Congress memorably put it the other day -- and I quote -- "no one knows what to do." Perhaps given that reaction, it shouldn't surprise us that the Congressional leaders of this do-nothing Congress also said that they weren't going to take action until after the election, claiming that it wasn't their fault. I am hopeful that last night's discussions are a sign they have changed their mind and will take action soon. But any action should be designed to keep people in their homes and safe guard the life savings of all Americans by protecting our financial system.

There are certainly plenty of places to point fingers, and it may be hard to pinpoint the original event that set it all in motion. But let me give you an educated guess. The financial crisis we're living through today started with the corruption and manipulation of our home mortgage system. At the center of the problem were the lobbyists, politicians, and bureaucrats who succeeded in persuading Congress and the administration to ignore the festering problems at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

These quasi-public corporations lead our housing system down a path where quick profit was placed before sound finance. They institutionalized a system that rewarded forcing mortgages on people who couldn't afford them, while turning around and selling those bad mortgages to the banks that are now going bankrupt. Using money and influence, they prevented reforms that would have curbed their power and limited their ability to damage our economy. And now, as ever, the American taxpayers are left to pay the price for Washington's failure.

Two years ago, I called for reform of this corruption at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Congress did nothing. The Administration did nothing. Senator Obama did nothing, and actually profited from this system of abuse and scandal. While Fannie and Freddie were working to keep Congress away from their house of cards, Senator Obama was taking their money. He got more, in fact, than any other member of Congress, except for the Democratic chairmen of the committee that oversees them. And while Fannie Mae was betraying the public trust, somehow its former CEO had managed to gain my opponent's trust to the point that Senator Obama actually put him in charge of his vice presidential search.

This CEO, Mr. Johnson, walked off with tens of millions of dollars in salary and bonuses for services rendered to Fannie Mae, even after authorities discovered accounting improprieties that padded his compensation. Another CEO for Fannie Mae, Mr. Raines, has been advising Senator Obama on housing policy. This even after Fannie Mae was found to have committed quote "extensive financial fraud" under his leadership. Like Mr. Johnson, Mr. Raines walked away with tens of millions of dollars.

Senator Obama may be taking their advice and he may be taking their money, but in a McCain-Palin administration, there will be no seat for these people at the policy-making table. They won't even get past the front gate at the White House.

My friends, this is the problem with Washington. People like Senator Obama have been too busy gaming the system and haven't ever done a thing to actually challenge the system.

We've heard a lot of words from Senator Obama over the course of this campaign. But maybe just this once he could spare us the lectures, and admit to his own poor judgment in contributing to these problems. The crisis on Wall Street started in the Washington culture of lobbying and influence peddling, and he was square in the middle of it.

The financial services industry -- and there are many honest and honorable people who work in it -- plays a vital role in our economy. Mutual fund companies help Americans save for retirement. Banks and lending companies provide the mortgages that help us buy our homes. Investment firms supply the seed money that helps entrepreneurs create tomorrow's jobs. Insurance companies protect us against unknown risks.

Yet as the financial crisis continues and bailouts and bankruptcies mount, it's clear financial firms have lost the trust of the American people. That trust cannot be regained unless we adopt some fundamental reforms. Government has a clear responsibility to act and to defend the public interest. That is exactly what I intend to do.

First, to deal with the immediate crisis, I will lead in the creation of the Mortgage and Financial Institutions trust -- the MFI. The underlying principle of the MFI or any approach considered by Congress should be to keep people in their homes and safe guard the life savings of all Americans by protecting our financial system and capital markets. This trust will work with the private sector and regulators to identify institutions that are weak and fix them before they become insolvent. The MFI is an early intervention program to help financial institutions avoid bankruptcy, expensive bailouts and damage to their customers. This will get the Treasury and other financial regulatory authorities in a proactive position instead of reacting in a crisis mode to one situation after another.

The MFI will restore investor and market confidence, build sound financial institutions, assist troubled institutions and protect our financial system while minimizing taxpayer exposure. This is an important step, but it is not enough. I will also take the additional actions needed to make sure a crisis like this is never allowed to build and break over the American people again.

Second, I will propose and sign into law reforms to prevent financial firms from concealing their bad practices. An inexcusable lack of financial transparency allowed Wall Street firms to engage in reckless behavior that padded their profits and fattened executive bonuses when times were good, but now imperil the financial security of millions of Americans when their bets turned sour.

So much of the damage to our economy could have been avoided if these practices had been exposed to the light of day. Americans have a right to know when their jobs, pensions, IRAs, investments, and our whole economy are being put at risk by the recklessness of Wall Street. And under my reforms for the financial sector, that fundamental right will be protected.

Third, we need regulatory clarity. The lack of transparency in our financial markets went unnoticed by the regulatory agencies scattered throughout Washington charged with protecting the common good. We've got the SEC, the FDIC, the CFTC, the SIPC, the OCC, the Fed. At best, this confusing assortment of regulators and institutions was egregiously lax in carrying out their responsibilities. At worst, they engaged in the old Washington game of guarding their bureaucratic turf, instead of safeguarding the public interest and protecting investors.

Many in the financial services industry also either forgot or neglected their duty to act ethically and honorably. This shortcoming was aided and abetted by the creation of financial instruments that allowed lenders to escape any responsibility for the risk of their loans. In the past, lenders had to pay a price if they made a bad loan. Today, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac worked with Wall Street to bundle together all these dicey subprime loans and then pushed them off on investors who didn't have the tools of transparency needed to assess or even understand the risk.

The current system promotes confusion, encourages bureaucratic infighting and creates incentives for financial firms to cut corners. We need to enhance regulatory clarity by holding the same financial activity to one regulatory standard. We don't need a dozen federal agencies doing the job badly -- we need the best federal agencies to do the job right.

Fourth, we must ensure that consumers and investors are protected. Our regulatory system must protect consumers and investors by punishing individuals who engage in fraud, break contracts, or lie to customers -- like the predatory lenders who know you can't afford an adjustable rate mortgage, but mislead you into signing one. These actions are criminal and the people who commit them should be behind bars. And corporate governance rules will be reformed so that shareholders have a clear say in determining the pay of CEOs and other senior executives. On my watch, the consequences for corporate abuse will not be more enrichment, but more likely an indictment.

Fifth, in cases where failing companies seek taxpayer bailouts, the Treasury Department will follow consistent policies in deciding whether to guarantee loans. It must have well developed remedies for a financial crisis. With billions of dollars in public money at stake, it will not do to keep making it up as we go along.

Finally, the Federal Reserve should get back to its core business of responsibly managing our money supply and inflation. It needs to get out of the business of bailouts. The Fed needs to return to protecting the purchasing power of the dollar. A strong dollar will reduce energy and food prices. It will stimulate sustainable economic growth and get this economy moving again.

All of these measures will calm and help us to avoid future panics and disasters in the financial markets. But to get through this tough time for America, and to come out stronger, we need a strategy of economic growth. And the massive new tax burden that my opponent plans for the American economy is exactly the wrong answer. His tax increase -- along with the enormous new federal programs he proposes -- are the surest way to turn a recession into a depression. In every respect, the Obama tax hikes would make things even worse for the working people of this country.

I have proposed, and will sign into law, an economic recovery plan for working Americans that is directed to the middle class. It will grow this economy, create millions of jobs and bring opportunity back to Americans. You will get a tax policy that creates family prosperity and allows you to save for the future. I will not raise your taxes on income or investments. And we will simplify the tax code so people can understand it and do their tax returns themselves.

I will give every family a $5,000 credit to buy their own health insurance policy and let them chose their own doctor. This will make insurance affordable to every American.

I will double the child exemption from $3,500 to $7,000 to help families pay for the rising cost of living.

Under my plan, a married couple with two children making $35,000 will get $5,000 to pay for health insurance and additional medical expenses. This family would get another $1,050 from my child exemption. That adds up to over $6,000. That is a lot more than what any hardworking middle class family, gets under the Obama plan.

Business taxes will be cut from the second highest in the world at 35 percent to 25 percent. Tax incentives will spur investment in new plants and equipment. Research and development incentives will keep companies on the cutting edge of their industries. Healthcare costs will diminish. Companies will stop sending jobs overseas to low-cost, low-tax countries and start creating jobs here in America.

I will expand markets for our goods and services. A one in five of all jobs in this country are linked to world trade. In five states alone Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin and Colorado over 5 million jobs depend on trade. My economic recovery plan will create millions of jobs in America instead of driving them overseas.

I will adopt an "all of the above" energy policy which expands our use of oil, natural gas, clean coal and nuclear facilities. We will embark on a national mission to build an alternative energy base, creating millions of new jobs. We will create the most diversified energy economy in the world. And, I will return to the American economy the $700 billion dollars we send overseas every year to buy oil.

My opponent offers a very different economic future. He has continuously shifted his position on taxes. At the beginning of this campaign he promised to raise taxes on your savings and investments. He said he won't raise taxes for most people but he has voted 94 times in his short Senate career for tax increases and against tax cuts. He said he would only tax the rich, but he voted this year to raise taxes on those making just $42,000. Senator Obama has simply not given Americans good reason to trust him with your tax dollars.

My opponent is against lowering taxes on businesses which are the second highest in the world. He will impose mandated health insurance on businesses that would cost up to $12,000 per employee. He opposes free trade. He also wants to take away the fundamental right of workers to have a secret ballot when voting to be part of a union.

Now is not the time for these destructive policies that will cripple business growth, destroy jobs and hurt the middle class. Now is the time to take action to address this crisis and take action to put our economy back on a path of growth.

Even though Democratic leaders say they don't know what to do, I believe the deep problems afflicting our financial system won't be solved by one political party. There is only one candidate in this race who has a record of reaching across the aisle to work out the bipartisan solutions needed to move our country forward in times of crisis -- and I will bring that same spirit of bipartisan cooperation to the White House. It took members of both parties to get America into this mess, and it will take all of us, working together, to lead the way out.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Campaign Lies, Media Double Standards

Stuart Taylor a respected journalist for the National Journal has an excellent article on press bias Among other things he writes:

We still have many great journalists, but I no longer trust the major newspapers or television networks to provide consistently accurate and fair reporting and analysis of all the charges and countercharges. This in an era when the noise produced by highly partisan TV hosts and blogs creates a crying need for at least one newspaper that we can count on to play it straight.

To read the rest click on the title for a link..... warning Charlie Gibson will not like it.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

John McCain, Leadership in Time of Crisis

John McCain's Statement in Iowa:

I'm happy to be introduced by Governor Palin, but I can't wait until I introduce her to Washington. Let me offer an advance warning to the big spending, greedy, do nothing, me first, country second crowd in Washington and on Wall Street: change is coming.

We need reform in Washington and on Wall Street. The financial markets are in crisis. Times are tough. Enormous strain is being put on working families and individuals in America. I know that the events unfolding can be difficult to understand for many Americans. The dominos that we have seen fall this week began with the corruption and manipulation of our home loan system. The reason this crisis started was the abuses that took place within our home loan agencies, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and within our home loan system.

Two years ago I warned this Administration and Congress that regulations for our home loan agencies, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, needed to be fixed…

But nothing was done.

Senator Obama talks a tough game on the financial markets but the facts tell a different story. He took more money from Fannie and Freddie than any Senator but the Democratic chairman of the committee that regulates them. He put Fannie Mae's CEO who helped create this disaster in charge of finding his Vice President. Fannie's former General Counsel is a senior advisor to his campaign. Whose side do you think he is on? When I pushed legislation to reform Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, Senator Obama was silent. He didn't lift a hand to avert this crisis. While the leaders of Fannie and Freddie were lining the pockets of his campaign, they were sowing the seeds of the financial crisis we see today and enriching themselves with millions of dollars in payments. That's not change, that's what's broken in Washington.

There was no transparency into the books of Wall Street banks. Banks and brokers took on huge amounts of debt and they hid the riskiest investments. Mismanagement and greed became the operating standard while regulators were asleep at the switch.

The primary regulator of Wall Street, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) kept in place trading rules that let speculators and hedge funds turn our markets into a casino. They allowed naked short selling -- which simply means that you can sell stock without ever owning it. They eliminated last year the uptick rule that has protected investors for 70 years. Speculators pounded the shares of even good companies into the ground.

The Chairman of the SEC serves at the appointment of the President and has betrayed the public's trust. If I were President today, I would fire him.

We cannot wait any longer for more failures in our financial system. Structures like the resolution trust corporation that dealt with the failed savings and loan industry were designed to clean up the system and worked. Today we need a plan that doesn't wait until the system fails. I am calling for the creation of the mortgage and financial institutions trust – the MFI. The priorities of this trust will be to work with the private sector and regulators to identify institutions that are weak and take remedies to strengthen them before they become insolvent. For troubled institutions this will provide an orderly process through which to identify bad loans and eventually sell them.

This will get the treasury and other financial regulatory authorities in a proactive position instead of reacting in a crisis mode to one situation after the other. The MFI will enhance investor and market confidence, benefit sound financial institutions, assist troubled institutions and protect our financial system, while minimizing taxpayer exposure. Tomorrow I will be talking in greater detail about the crisis facing our markets and what I will do as President to fix this crisis and get our economy moving again.

Senator Obama has never made the kind tough reform we need today. His idea of reform is what his party leaders in Congress order him to do. We tried for bipartisan ethics reform and he walked away from it because his bosses didn't want real change. I know how to make the change that Senator Obama and this Congress is afraid of. I've fought both parties to shake up up Washington and I'm going to do it as President.

Those same Congressional leaders who give Senator Obama his marching orders are now saying that this mess isn't their fault and they aren't going to take any action on this crisis until after the election. Senator Obama's own advisers are saying that crisis will benefit him politically. My friends, that is the kind of me-first, country-second politics that are broken in Washington. My opponent sees an economic crisis as a political opportunity instead of a time to lead. Senator Obama isn't change, he's part of the problem with Washington.

When AIG was bailed out, I didn't like it, but I understood it needed to be done to protect hard working Americans with insurance policies and annuities. Senator Obama didn't take a position. On the biggest issue of the day, he didn't know what to think. He may not realize it, but you don't get to vote present as President of the United States.

While Senator Obama and Congressional leaders don't know what to think about the current crisis, we know what their plans are for the economy. Today Senator Obama's running mate said that raising taxes is patriotic. Raising taxes in a tough economy isn't patriotic. It's not a badge of honor. It's just dumb policy. The billions in tax increases that Senator Obama is proposing would kill even more jobs during tough economic times. I'm not going to let that happen.

I have seen tough times before. I know how to shake-up Wall Street and Washington. I will get this economy moving. I will lead us through this crisis by fighting for you, and when I am President we will be stronger than ever before.

"Get in their face"

“I need you to go out and talk to your friends and talk to your neighbors. I want you to talk to them whether they are independent or whether they are Republican. I want you to argue with them and get in their face,” Barak Obama, Elko Nevada, Sept 17, 2008

This is how he is going to bring us together with the politics of "Hope"

He was right about the Surge ..... AND.... he was right about the Housing Market Financial System

Picked this up from National Review Online:

Bart Hall (Kansas, USA) wrote:

It’s not as though this couldn’t be foreseen. It was. By the same guy who called for (years before it happened) a surge of troops to turn things around in Iraq.

John McCain. 25 May 2005, speaking to the Senate:

Mr. President, this week Fannie Mae’s regulator reported that the company’s quarterly reports of profit growth over the past few years were “illusions deliberately and systematically created” by the company’s senior management, which resulted in a $10.6 billion accounting scandal.

The Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight’s report goes on to say that Fannie Mae employees deliberately and intentionally manipulated financial reports to hit earnings targets in order to trigger bonuses for senior executives. In the case of Franklin Raines, Fannie Mae’s former chief executive officer, OFHEO’s report shows that over half of Mr. Raines’ compensation for the 6 years through 2003 was directly tied to meeting earnings targets. The report of financial misconduct at Fannie Mae echoes the deeply troubling $5 billion profit restatement at Freddie Mac.

The OFHEO report also states that Fannie Mae used its political power to lobby Congress in an effort to interfere with the regulator’s examination of the company’s accounting problems. This report comes some weeks after Freddie Mac paid a record $3.8 million fine in a settlement with the Federal Election Commission and restated lobbying disclosure reports from 2004 to 2005. These are entities that have demonstrated over and over again that they are deeply in need of reform.

For years I have been concerned about the regulatory structure that governs Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac–known as Government-sponsored entities or GSEs–and the sheer magnitude of these companies and the role they play in the housing market. OFHEO’s report this week does nothing to ease these concerns. In fact, the report does quite the contrary. OFHEO’s report solidifies my view that the GSEs need to be reformed without delay.

I join as a cosponsor of the Federal Housing Enterprise Regulatory Reform Act of 2005, S. 190, to underscore my support for quick passage of GSE regulatory reform legislation. If Congress does not act, American taxpayers will continue to be exposed to the enormous risk that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac pose to the housing market, the overall financial system, and the economy as a whole. I urge my colleagues to support swift action on this GSE reform legislation.


The legislation was blocked by Democrats, with the assistance of a few Republicans.

James Johnson, former CEO of Fannie Mae and current Obama advisor, has cost us many tens of billions of dollars we can’t afford.

Franklin Raines, former CEO of Fannie Mae and current Obama advisor, has cost us many tens of billions of dollars we can’t afford.

John Nostradamus McCain!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

"You can’t keep looking like a messiah when you keep talking like Clinton."

John J. Pitney Jr. Professor of American politics at Claremont McKenna College:

"Obama has promised to cleanse American politics of dishonesty and special-interest influence. Some of his supporters have even compared him to Jesus.

The McCain campaign has pounded Obama for falling short of his own standards. And Obama has supplied plenty of ammunition. He broke his promise on public funding of his fall campaign. He pledged that he would fire any staffer who criticized Palin for private family matters. When a staffer did that, Obama reneged again.
In fact, if Obama were faithful to his own word, he would not even be in the race. Here’s what he said when he took his senatorial oath in 2005: “I’m not running for national office. I am here to be sworn in as the United States senator from the state of Illinois. I will not be running for president in `08.”

Obama has defended himself with lawyerly hedging and parsing. In other words, it all depends on what the meaning of the word “promise” is. No wonder Obamamania has cooled. You can’t keep looking like a messiah when you keep talking like Clinton."

To read the rest of Professor Pitney's essay click on the title for a link.

Palin and the Media Meltdown

Bret Stephens from the Wall Street Journal:

If nothing else, the media meltdown over Sarah Palin's candidacy for the vice presidency has exposed the not-unsuspected truth that, when it comes to historical ignorance and political amnesia, our cultural panjandrums are in a class by themselves.

ABC's Charlie Gibson is only the latest to offer himself upon the altar of self-parody with his pop-quizzing of the Alaska governor during their interview last week......

To read the rest click on the title for a link.

Monument Valley

Click on the title above for a wonderful article in the Washington Post Magazine about writer Glenn Frankel's pilgrimage to movie Director, John Ford's Monument Valley in Southern Utah. He starts out the article as follows:

A woman in a blue country dress and a white apron stares from the porch of a simple ranch house. She spies a lone rider framed by two distant, towering buttes, moving slowly across sage brush, sand and scrub. Martha Edwards realizes it's her long-lost brother-in-law, Ethan, (John Wayne)coming home three years after the end of the Civil War. Ethan's war has never really ended: Following the defeat of the Confederacy, he has been living south of the border as an outlaw and a hired gun.

The opening panel of "The Searchers," John Ford's classic western, sets the scene as Texas 1868, but the real setting was Monument Valley, Utah; the year was 1955;

Like me, Frankel is a fan of the movie 'The Searchers" and the magazine article is of his trip to Monument Valley in search of "The Searchers." His trip is very similar to my trip a few years ago. We also stayed at Gouldings Lodge and had a Navajo guide take us on a four wheel drive tour of Monument valley in one of the best days of my life. The picture above is of a younger me at "John Fords Points". As we drove into the valley I played a home made cassette tape recoding of the music from "She Wore a Yellow Ribbon" directed by John Ford and starring John Wayne and also filmed in Monument Valley. Each night at the lodge I played a VHS tape of a John Ford movie filmed there for the family. One morning I got up early to film the sun rising over valley and I spent a lot of time in the Gouldings Lodge Museum. I even saw the cabin that John Wayne's character used as his living quarters in "She Wore a Yellow Ribbon."

Monday, September 15, 2008

"How the West Was Won" on Blu Ray DVD ***** (UPDATED)

Last June when I bought my Blu Ray DVD player (Playstation 3) I bought it so I could watch this movie on Blu Ray DVD when it was released last week. I ordered it from Amazon.com and it arrived on Friday and I watched it Sunday and it was well worth the wait. It looks great! I have had a long love affair with this movie.

The following is the Internet Movie Data Base summary of the movie for those disadvantaged folks who have never seen this 1962 movie filmed in Cinerama!

Sprawling epic which follows the Prescotts, an emigrant family through four generations, from the Erie Canal in the 1830's to their settled home in the West a half a century later. On the way they encounter river pirates, and escape with the help of fur trapper Linus Rawlings (James Stewart), who subsequently marries one of their daughters, Eve (Carroll Baker). The parents are drowned on a foundering raft, and the other daughter Lilith (Debbie Reynolds) becomes a riverboat singer and catches the eye of a genteel adventurer Cleve Van Valen (Gregory Peck). They cross the plains together in a wagon train and make and lose a fortune in California; meanwhile Linus has turned farmer and, comes the Civil War, joins the Union Army and is killed at the Battle of Shiloh. One of his sons Zeb (George Peppard) also joins the army and stays after the war as a cavalry officer and is sent to Colorado to help guard the pioneering railroad against the Indians, whose land they are crossing. By this time Lilith is the elderly lady of the family, having survived long enough to see the dream of settlement realized,.....

I first saw the movie in 1962 or 1963 while a teenager and fell in love with the movie. In those days there was no video for home showing on VHS much less DVD so I bought the sound track record album. One of the best parts of the movie was the music and Debbie Reynolds singing "Home in the Meadow." The Theme music to the movie has become a western classic. I played that record over and over and later bought the cassette tape on a family vacation in Tuscon and Old Tuscon. We played it a lot on family trips and our Kids know it well. About a year ago I got the soundtrack on CD.

Seeing the movie again presented problems. When I was in the Army stationed near Colorado Springs in 1970/1971 the movie was re released and shown at a theater at the famous Broadmore Hotel. I went and was disappointed by the picture quality. The movie was filmed in Cinerama which meant it had three panels for a curved screen. When shown on a traditional flat screen the three panels stood out with two distinct lines separating the three panels filmed by three cameras.The movie looked terrible on TV. The same problem presented it's self when I bought the two VHS tape set in the 1980's. When DVD finally was introduced I hoped that the problem had been solved but again was disappointed when I purchased the DVD early in this decade. Well, the Blu Ray DVD release of this movie has corrected the problem and you get a great clear detailed picture with out the two lines separating the three panels. With the magic of electronics they have eliminated the lines in all but a very few scenes.The movie has not looked better since 1962!
The Blu Ray edition even has an option so you can recreate the effect of the Cinerama curved screen.

The movie was directed by three directors and my favorite is the Civil War section directed by John Ford.I still get a lump in my throat when a young George Peppard says goodbye to his mother, Carroll Baker, as he goes off to war. We also see a cameo of John Wayne as General William Tecumseh Sherman and Raymond Massey as Abraham Lincoln. Pappard returns home to the music "When Johnny Comes Marching Home" in a bitter sweet scene that tugs at your heart!

The movie has everything.... rafts on whitewater, buffalo stampedes, an Indian attack on a wagon train, a shoot out on a train and of course the Civil War. Who can ever forget the singing of Debbie Reynolds when she leads the wagon train members, camped for the night, in a rousing singing and dancing sequence to get them out of their doldrums.Spencer Tracy also adds perspective and gravity in several "voice overs" that tie together this episodic movie.

I love westerns and this was probably in 1962 one of the last few westerns that took a positive view of the American West and America. After "How the West Was Won" Hollywood started releasing movies that emphasise the closing of the west and violent western movies that made hero's out of villains and outlaws.

Well done!

(Click on title for a link to more info on the blu ray movie with lots of pictures from this new addition)

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Week Three: No Coach Bellotti Show in Southern Oregon

Today in an attempt to put pressure on Charter Cable in Southern Oregon, Comcast Sportsnet ran a full page yellow/black/green ad in the sports section of Medford's Mail Tribune, Sunday newspaper. The full page ad has a large picture of an Oregon Duck football player with number "00" and states: "DUCK FANS, DON'T MISS A MOMENT OF COVERAGE. TO GET COMCAST SPORTSNET CONTACT DIRECTTV, DISH NETWORK OR CHARTER BY CALLING 877-8CSNNW-9" The ad doesn't say how much Comcast Sportsnet is charging but I have talked to a source here in Southern Oregon who confirms $2.00 per Charter Cable subscriber per month is close. Typically Comcast will not allow a cable operator like Charter to put Comcast Sportsnet on a higher "Sports Tier" so only those that want it will pay the additional cable cost. If you polled most Charter customers in Southern Oregon, they would not want to increase their cable bill by $2.00 to get the Mike Bellotti show and a few Oregon football and basketball games that they used to get free. Hopefully there can be some compromise between Charter and Comcast... make it happen!

I called the number on the ad and reached a recorded message that said that the cable provider in my area did not have Comcast Sportsnet and then transferred me to Charter Cable where I get their regular recorded call menu of options for incoming calls.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Oregon Ducks Win in Double OT

The Oregon Ducks who trailed the Purdue Boilermaker 6 to 20 at halftime came from behind to win the game 32 to 26 in double overtime in West Lafayette, Indiana. Our adult kids who were at the game called us on their cell phone after the game from the stadium and our daughter said "the Ducks never make it easy!" Any Duck fan who has followed the Oregon Ducks for any period of time know the meaning of that statement. They never do! There were many times during the game it looked like the Ducks were headed to an embarrassing loss. Now redemption! Now the kids can go back to their motel bar and watch the Ohio State vs U$C game on TV and celebrate. Have fun Kids! Great day to be a Duck! Go Ducks!!!!!

(Click the title for a link to the AP report on the game)

Friday, September 12, 2008

Friday Night Lights

What a pleasant night for high school football in Medford, Oregon. My wife an I went to the South Medford Panther game with the Sprague Olympians from Salem. We saw a lot of old friends.South Medford won 42 to 14 but it was closer than the score. At halftime South Medford had only scored 7 points to Sprague's 14 and looked anemic. South Medford could very well have been down two touchdowns. About halfway through the 3rd quarter South Medford caught fire and the roof fell in on Sprague. The large crowd went wild as the team stepped it up. Go Panthers!

Oregon vs Purdue

This Saturday when the Oregon Ducks takes the field against the Purdue Boilermakers in a college football game in West Lafayette , Indiana on September 13th,there will be two Wickre's in the stands cheering on the Ducks! Our daughter was able to get two tickets for her brother and herself. She lives in Washington DC and will fly to the game. Her brother who is at the University of Kentucky in Lexington will drive up to join her. Both of our adult children have received their college degrees and neither went to the University of Oregon. However, they are both Duck fans and love to go to Oregon games. Last year they both attended the Oregon game against Michigan in Ann Arbor and watched the Ducks dismantle the Wolverines. Go Ducks beat the Boilermakers!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Gov. Sarah Palin 1; ABC's Charlie Gibson 0

"Ms. Palin didn’t look rattled or lose her cool in her first interview with Mr. Gibson, the network anchor, on Thursday night, but sailed through with general answers, sticking to talking points that flowed out quickly and spiritedly....

Gibson, who sat back in his chair and wriggled his foot impatiently, had the skeptical, annoyed tone of a university president who agrees to interview the daughter of a trustee, but doesn't believe she merits admission."

Where do those quotes come from..... National Review......Rush Limbaugh..... NO its from an article by New York Times TV critic Alessandra Stanley!

Now from National Review by Ruth Wedgwood:

ABC News anchor Charles Gibson may have thought he was giving a fair but “tough” interview to Governor Sarah Palin of Alaska, in the first press contact with the new vice-presidential candidate.

But ABC did itself no favors. Viewers watching the dagger-and-sheath interview — aired on national television last night and endlessly replayed on “YouTube” — could easily draw a different conclusion. Unconsciously or not, Gibson’s manner and language fairly dripped with condescension and disbelief.....

It was the flourish of a trial attorney who chooses to substitute body language for substance, in persuading the jury that the witness is unworthy.

It was, to be plain, a distraction from what could have been an interesting conversation.

Most women, even now, are quite familiar with being talked over and not so subtly demeaned when they venture an opinion. It happens at dinner parties, in Washington and New York, where Gibson reigns as a network anchor, and even in educational classrooms.....

The television host, who came to broadcasting from Princeton and its Tower Club, via Washington’s Sidwell Friends School, would have been well served to ask some local folk (or even some big city women) what they thought of his navigation skills.

I will never view good old "Charlie" Gibson in quite the same light. He was a prig!

He reminded me of a British Officer in a movie about the American Revolution or the French and Indian Wars who looks down his nose at the lowly American "colonial" who wants freedom.

UPDATE: now Jay Nordlinger of National Review:

I have now examined long stretches of tape. (I sound like an assistant football coach, I know.) And he is amazingly condescending, prosecutorial, and snippy — even interrupts a lot. Insufferable. This is not the Gibson American television viewers have long known.

Poor Charlie,now Charles Krauthammer of the Washington Post joins in:

Such is not the case with the Bush Doctrine.

Yes, Sarah Palin didn't know what it is. But neither does Charlie Gibson. And at least she didn't pretend to know -- while he looked down his nose and over his glasses with weary disdain, sighing and "sounding like an impatient teacher," as the Times noted. In doing so, he captured perfectly the establishment snobbery and intellectual condescension that has characterized the chattering classes' reaction to the mother of five who presumes to play on their stage.