Patterico's Pontifications


Playing Politics

Filed under: Politics — DRJ @ 9:22 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

In an article about the Bush Administration after Hurricane Katrina, a Colin Powell associate demonstrates the Obama-Biden tactic of likening Republicans to George Bush:

Lawrence Wilkerson, top aide and later chief of staff to former Secretary of State Colin Powell, said that as a new president, Bush was like Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, the 2008 GOP vice presidential nominee whom critics said lacked knowledge about foreign affairs. When Bush first came into office, he was surrounded by experienced advisers like Vice President Dick Cheney and Powell, who Wilkerson said ended up playing damage control for the president.

“It allowed everybody to believe that this Sarah Palin-like president – because, let’s face it, that’s what he was – was going to be protected by this national-security elite, tested in the cauldrons of fire,” Wilkerson said, adding that he considered Cheney probably the “most astute, bureaucratic entrepreneur” he’d ever met.”

They really are afraid of Palin, aren’t they? Of course, this could also be part of proving fidelity to the new guard in Washington or a heartfelt statement of contempt for Bush and Palin. Whatever the motive, it’s classic Washington politics and members of both parties do it.

But it’s interesting to notice how often the fingerprints of Powell’s associates appear on efforts that hurt the GOP. Plame, anyone?


Sunrise, Sunset

Filed under: Miscellaneous — DRJ @ 7:18 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

Sarah Palin’s daughter Bristol reportedly had a boy Sunday in Alaska — Tripp Easton Mitchell Johnston, 7 pounds, 4 ounces. The Palin family has a knack for distinctive names. Congratulations to all.

Meanwhile, the family of Jennifer Seitz — a Florida woman who disappeared Christmas Day from a cruise ship off the Mexican coast — are mourning her loss at sea. The family announced today they believe she took her own life. My condolences on their loss.

Fellow passenger Jim Nestor described Feitz and her husband as having “large and raw personalities”:

“Many of the passengers saw them as contestants on an on-board game called “The Not-So-Newlywed Game,” modeled after a 1960s TV quiz show. The game was also carried on the ship’s closed-circuit TV channel.

“They stood out a lot more than other people,” Nestor, a retired police officer, told NBC.

Nestor, who appeared on the game show with his own wife, said he ran into Raymond Seitz day after his wife was reported missing.

“I had given him my condolences, and he had a plastic bag filled with quarters, and he said to me that he was going to the casino to see if he could change his luck,” Nestor said.”


Why Obama Ultimately Will Lose Religious Voters

Filed under: 2008 Election,Politics,Religion — WLS @ 4:25 pm

Posted by WLS Shipwrecked:

I’m responding here to this article by Nathan Diament today over at TNR about how Obama will win over religious voters during his first term.  The author considers the invitation to Rick Warren, the endorsement by Doug Kmiec, the fact that 20% of Obama supporters were pro-life, that he began his outreach to religious voters before announcing his run, etc., all as a foundation to claim that Obama will reach religious voters not with his words, but with his works.

I disagree for the following simple reason — Obama is not a truly religious man. 

I’ve always been convinced that Obama’s participation and membership in the Trinity United Church in Chicago was more about his political aspirations than about religious faith.   His rise in Chicago politics is linked to the support structure he built for himself with the South Side religious leaders and his career path of starting out as a “community organizer.” 

But, more significantly in my view, since resigning from Trinity, Obama has not joined a new Church — either in Chicago where he intends to keep his family home — or in DC for their time in the White House.

Further, Obama has yet to attend a Sunday church service since the election.  It was easy to make it to Sunday services while on the campaign trail — a visit to a local church in whatever town he happened to be campaigning in on a given Sunday during the primary or general campaign season was simply another opportunity to meet voters and be photographed.  All that ended on November 5.  Since then not one visit to a church.

While in Hawaii Obama skipped service on both Sundays he has been there, as well as Christmas day. 

I’m not a particularly pious person myself, and I don’t regularly attend church. But I didn’t pretend to be otherwise while running for and serving in elective office.

Obama will lose religious voters over time because they will come to see him for what he is — an opportunistic politician who used church attendance as a tool to get ahead.  He made them believe he was one of them when he truly wasn’t.

There won’t be any hiding it next time.

U.S. to Disintegrate in 2010

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:29 am

A Russian professor says so, so it must be true:

A polite and cheerful man with a buzz cut, Mr. Panarin insists he does not dislike Americans. But he warns that the outlook for them is dire.

“There’s a 55-45% chance right now that disintegration will occur,” he says. . . . Mr. Panarin posits, in brief, that mass immigration, economic decline, and moral degradation will trigger a civil war next fall and the collapse of the dollar. Around the end of June 2010, or early July, he says, the U.S. will break into six pieces — with Alaska reverting to Russian control.

You can see Alaska from Russia, you know. It’s not just a one-way deal.

I think 55-45 is too bold, by the way. I’m going 50-50. That way I’m right no matter what happens. I learned that from weathermen who say there’s a 50% chance of rain.

The article prompted a question about the White House’s reaction to Prof. Panarin’s forecast at a December news conference. “I’ll have to decline to comment,” spokeswoman Dana Perino said amid much laughter.

For Prof. Panarin, Ms. Perino’s response was significant. “The way the answer was phrased was an indication that my views are being listened to very carefully,” he says.

We’re not carefully listening with you, we’re carefully listening at you.

Then again, maybe this fellow’s predictions will find adherents here. Some of you are pretty pessimistic about Barack Obama. Just how deep does that pessimism run?

Dallas Cowboys Lose 44-6

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:13 am


The appropriate line comes courtesy of this June 2001 story about the death of coach John McKay, noted by commenter Pablo:

His team lost its first 26 games — 14 the first season and the first 12 the next. After one of those losses, when he was asked what he thought of his team’s execution, he replied, ”I think it’s a good idea.”

A lot of people in Dallas may be feeling that way about now.

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