Patterico's Pontifications

10/23/2009

Obama Throws Creigh Deeds Under the Bus

Filed under: Obama,Politics — DRJ @ 9:46 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

The Washington Post reports the Obama Administration wants to make sure no one blames President Obama if Democratic candidate R. Creigh Deeds loses the Virginia Governor’s race:

“Senior administration officials have expressed frustration with how Democrat R. Creigh Deeds has handled his campaign for governor, refusing early offers of strategic advice and failing to reach out to several key constituencies that helped Obama win Virginia in 2008, they say.
***
A senior administration official said Deeds badly erred on several fronts, including not doing a better job of coordinating with the White House. “I understood in the beginning why there was some reluctance to run all around the state with Barack Obama,” said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity in order to speak candidly about the race. “You don’t do that in Virginia. But when you consider the African American turnout that they need, and then when you consider as well they’ve got a huge problem with surge voters, younger voters, we were just a natural for them.”

Deeds is hurt:

“Deeds said he was puzzled by the comments from unnamed Obama administration officials who said that he had virtually no chance to defeat Republican Robert F. McDonnell and that such a loss would reflect on Deeds’s failings rather than on Obama’s popularity.
***
“It is frustrating to read, because that’s not what we’ve been hearing from anybody over there,” Deeds said. “I’m just not sure where the talk is coming from. It just doesn’t make sense. . . . There’s been no disagreements between us of which I’m aware.”

Local Democratic strategists view the White House leaks as counterproductive and clueless:

“When it comes out of the White House, this Monday morning quarterbacking stuff before the election even happens, it’s devastating to the whole ticket,” said David “Mudcat” Saunders, a political strategist who worked to elect now-U.S. Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) governor in 2001 and Webb to the U.S. Senate in 2006. “I think Obama ought to find who did this to us, and I think he ought to fire ‘em. It’s totally without character.”

Paul Goldman, a Richmond activist and former chairman of the Democratic Party of Virginia, called the tactics “bush league,” an attempt to send a message to Democrats about crossing the White House without regard to the damage it might cause the state party and its candidates.

“It’s take-no-prisoners,” he said. “It’s exactly the kind of thing we voted out of office.”

Actually, Mr. Goldman, this is the untested, undefined candidate Democrats nominated and now everyone is getting a taste of exactly who you voted for.

– DRJ

Fun With Obama

Filed under: Humor,Obama — DRJ @ 8:43 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

President Obama loves to blame President Bush and Republicans for every problem, including this example from a recent San Francisco fundraiser:

“Even in the midst of a difficult and taxing health care fight, the president hasn’t lost his sense of humor–especially when making fun of his opponents. Last night at a Democratic National Committee fundraiser in San Francisco, the president offered an analogy for opponents of Demcoratic [sic] reforms: when I’m cleaning up your mess, don’t tell me how to hold the mop…and don’t tell me the mop is socialist.”

Jay Leno saw the humor, too, although from a slightly different perspective:

– DRJ

Pellicano Pleads Guilty; Anita Busch Blasts “Unethical Idiots” at the L.A. Times

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 5:52 pm

Anthony Pellicano and Alexander Proctor pled guilty today to threatening former L.A. Times reporter Anita Busch. The sentence was three years, to be served concurrently with his 15-year federal sentence for wiretapping.

I asked Anita Busch tonight if she had a statement and she sent me this:

I’m very relieved all the criminal trials are over. If this had gone forward, I would have had to testify in two more criminal trials. It was seven years since my life was threatened, computer hacked into and my phones illegally wiretapped. What they did to me was an act of domestic terrorism, and they are both in prison where they belong. Everything I said has now come to pass. I can hold my head high because I told the truth the entire time. What I learned through this experience was that most people are afraid of the truth … and that includes certain unethical idiots at the Los Angeles Times. Not only did they lie about my employment status, but also called Anthony Pellicano for help on my case and then hid that from their own staff, from me and from law enforcement.

Believe it or not, that’s the toned-down version.

If you don’t know what she’s talking about, here’s some reading for you:

I have previously documented Busch’s allegations regarding the attempts by an L.A. Times lawyer to “bring aboard” Pellicano for help concerning the threats to Busch. This was remarkably bad judgment at a minimum, given Pellicano’s shady reputation and the fact that an informant had told Busch that a private detective was behind the threats on Busch’s life. I have also documented the incredibly shabby treatment Busch received at the hands of that lawyer and others at the paper. I also published Busch’s eye-opening sentencing statement after Pellicano’s wiretapping trial, as well as the L.A. Times‘s response, which I showed to be lacking.

UPDATE: Technically, he pled “no contest” and not “guilty.” But it’s legally the same, at least as far as the criminal court is concerned.

Heated Discussions, Part II

Filed under: Humor — DRJ @ 5:38 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

Is it photoshopped or is it real?

– DRJ

Northwest Jet Overshoots Airport by 150 Miles

Filed under: Air Security — DRJ @ 5:30 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

A Northwest Airlines flight traveling from San Diego to Minneapolis on Wednesday took a little longer than expected to arrive:

“[The pilots] were at 37,000 feet as they approached the city and fell out of touch with air traffic controllers who tried desperately to reach them.

Ground control feared the worst — a hijacking — and prepared to scramble fighter jets.

The pilots said they were distracted by a heated discussion of airline policy, but experts wonder if they fell asleep. The NTSB may have a hard time confirming what happened, as it’s likely the voice recorder captured only the last 30 minutes of the flight — much of that time after pilots had realized their error and turned the plane back around.
***
Yet the pilots didn’t discover their mistake Wednesday night until a flight attendant in the cabin contacted them by intercom, said a source close to the investigation who wasn’t authorized to talk publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity.

By that time, the plane was over Eau Claire, Wis., and the pilots had been out of communication with air traffic controllers for over an hour. Pilots turned the plane back around and landed safely an hour and 15 minutes late, around 9:15 p.m. Wednesday.”

Apparently the conversation was so heated that the pilots didn’t notice cockpit warnings, repeated radio, data message and cell phone calls from air traffic controllers, and the twinkling lights of their destination. Reports say military F-16s were put on alert so this could have been tragic. (Despite 9/11, does it still take 30 minutes to mobilize a response?)

It sounds like these pilots fell asleep and I hope that’s the case because that can be fixed. IMO it’s far worse to imagine a pilot and co-pilot who are so mad they can’t remember to fly the plane.

– DRJ

Balloon Mom Admits Hoax

Filed under: Crime — DRJ @ 5:26 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

The balloon boy’s mother has reportedly admitted that the whole thing was a hoax:

“The mother of the 6-year-old Fort Collins boy believed to have been trapped in an airborne balloon later admitted to authorities that the incident was a hoax she and her husband had planned two weeks in advance.
***
The mother said the hoax was designed to make the family more marketable for future media interest, including television reality shows. She also said the flying saucer-shaped balloon had been made specifically for the hoax.

She said she told her three children to lie to authorities as well as the media.”

The cruelest part of their hoax is what this will do to their children.

– DRJ

ObamaCare: “We hope you guys know what you’re doing.”

Filed under: General — Karl @ 4:14 pm

[Posted by Karl]

From Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals:

RULE 1: “Power is not only what you have, but what the enemy thinks you have.” Power is derived from 2 main sources – money and people. “Have-Nots” must build power from flesh and blood. (These are two things of which there is a plentiful supply. Government and corporations always have a difficult time appealing to people, and usually do so almost exclusively with economic arguments.)

***

RULE 9: “The threat is usually more terrifying than the thing itself.” Imagination and ego can dream up many more consequences than any activist. (Perception is reality. Large organizations always prepare a worst-case scenario, something that may be furthest from the activists’ minds. The upshot is that the organization will expend enormous time and energy, creating in its own collective mind the direst of conclusions. The possibilities can easily poison the mind and result in demoralization.)

Given that the current phase of the Democrats’ attempt to take over the US healthcare system is mostly behind closed doors, most of what we hear is going to be gossip and propaganda — statements and leaks designed to manipulate other politicians and the public.

For example, on the so-called “public option,” we have been fed news stories about how the House Dems have the votes for a “robust” government-run insurance plan, only to find out that they did not, that the Dems being whipped may not have known what the “robust public option” is, that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi then did a public whipping to shame Dems into supporting her — and that the count leaves some 50 to 60 Dems in the air (though the number could also be as low as seven or eight).

On the Senate side, we have been fed stories about Sen. Maj. Ldr. Harry Reid warming to the idea of putting the “public option” into the merged bill going to the floor, with a state opt-out — with 57 or 58 Senators supporting it. But most accounts also have Sen. Max Baucus moving into action, and complaints from Sens. Ben Nelson, Olympia Snowe, Mary Landrieu and perhaps Evan Bayh following.

And though we have been fed stories about Obama quietly trying to shore up the public option, that does not seem to be the case, either:

On Thursday night, Reid went over to the White House for a talk with the president. The conversation centered on Reid’s desire to put Schumer’s national opt-out plan into the base bill. White House officials were not necessarily pleased, and they made that known. Everyone agrees that they didn’t embrace Reid’s new strategy. Everyone agrees that the White House wants Snowe on the bill, feels the trigger offers a safer endgame, and isn’t convinced by Reid’s math. But whether officials expressed a clear preference for the trigger, or were just worried about the potential for 60 votes, is less clear. One staffer briefed on the conversation says “the White House basically told us, ‘We hope you guys know what you’re doing.’”

If Reid’s debacle on the “doc fix” this week is any indicator, that is some audacious hope at 1600 Penn. More broadly, the White House, especially Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, have been for the “public option with trigger” for months — which is why the usual lefty suspects are protesting now, and why the story about Obama warming to the public option should have been flagged as “fishy.”

After all of the sturm and drang, it still seems quite possible that the soap opera is a Narrative in which Reid works so hard to get the public option into the bill, but is thwarted by the eeevil Rahmbo — as opposed to revealing a “silent filibuster” of ObamaCare. In the meantime, the Dems hope that a Narrative of momentum will demoralize ObamaCare’s opponents, and become a self-fulfilling prophecy.

–Karl

Fact-Challenged Piece on ACORN in L.A. Times

Filed under: Dog Trainer,General — Patterico @ 7:41 am

Peter Dreier’s op-ed about ACORN in the L.A. Times is so filled with inaccuracies it’s hard to know where to start. Let’s start with Dreier’s false statements about the recent ACORN videos:

Two “gotcha” right-wing activists showed up at about 10 ACORN offices hoping to entice low-level staff to provide tax advice for an illegal prostitution ring. In most ACORN offices, the staff kicked the pair out. In a few cities, staffers called the police. In two offices, however, the staff listened and offered to help. That was wrong. But ACORN immediately fired the errant staffers.

Huh?

Let’s bypass the edited Philadelphia video for now.

DRJ has painstakingly documented the release of ACORN videos in San Diego, in San Bernardino, in Brooklyn, in Washington, D.C., and in Baltimore.

Watch the videos. ACORN employees are seen advising two young people on how to hide money from the federal government, misrepresent the nature of their business on tax forms, and so forth. They repeatedly shrug at explicit descriptions of a prostitution ring involving girls 13-15 years old smuggled across the border.

That’s more than two.

And that’s assuming there are no more videos. I think that would be a bad assumption.

What’s more, in the post on the San Diego video, you can see Andrew Breitbart categorically state that, as DRJ put it, “no ACORN office kicked James and Hannah out based on the fact that they were doing something nefarious.” I have seen no proof to the contrary. What I have seen is ACORN claiming that happened — and then videos appearing from those cities proving ACORN wrong.

You’re entitled to your own opinions, Peter Dreier, but not your own facts.

Let’s move on to Dreier’s false claims about voter fraud:

Our study documented that many news outlets reported the voter fraud allegations without attempting to verify them. Had they done so, they would have discovered that not a single person who signed a phony name on a registration form ever actually voted. What occurred was voter registration fraud, not voter fraud, and it was ACORN that exposed the wrongdoing in the first place.

Ahem.

Darnell Nash of Cleveland, Ohio, was registered to vote by ACORN nine times for last year’s election. Nash cast a fraudulent ballot and was convicted of vote fraud and voter registration fraud. He’s currently serving a six-month prison term.

A spokesman for Cleveland’s Democratic prosecutor Bill Mason told me earlier this month that a local investigation of ACORN remains wide open.

[UPDATE: I have since learned that the American Spectator article was incorrect to assert that Nash was convicted of vote fraud. He was charged with vote fraud and numerous other felonies, but was convicted of three counts of false registration. I have written the author of the American Spectator piece seeking a correction but have received no response. Details in an update to this post.]

As DRJ recently noted, another ACORN-linked group is connected to a New York case in which voter registration fraud not only resulted in actual vote fraud, but likely even threw the election to the Democrats. In comments to that DRJ post, Richard Aubrey noted the problem: “Problem is, if a guy votes fraudulently, how do you know it’s fraudulent? If it looked fraudulent, you wouldn’t let him vote and, presto, no fraudulent vote.”

To me it’s common sense that there are tens of thousands of illegal votes cast in every national election. With well over 10 million illegal immigrants, many with phony documentation that appears authentic enough to allow them to work, collect welfare benefits, etc. — you think none of them cast votes in elections, where you usually don’t even have to show an ID to vote?? You think ACORN registered none of the ones who did vote?

Even if you stick with only the documented example above, Dreier is wrong to say there are none.

The L.A. Times should correct Dreier’s misrepresentations.

Obama Administration Formally Requests Polanski’s Extradition

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 6:36 am

Polanski’s hiring of Eric Holder’s pal apparently didn’t work:

The Swiss government says the U.S. has formally requested the extradition of imprisoned director Roman Polanski for having sex in 1977 with a 13-year-old girl.

I’m not going to compliment Obama on doing the right thing here, because it’s like what Chris Rock says about obeying the law and police orders. It’s what you’re supposed to do.


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