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Balladeer
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0 posted 05-14-2008 09:42 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer




serenity blaze
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1 posted 05-14-2008 10:28 PM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

The only thing I'll say publically now is the same thing I told the "non-partisan" pollster who had the misfortune to ring my number--

you are going to have to guess.

oceanvu2
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2 posted 05-15-2008 02:24 PM       View Profile for oceanvu2   Email oceanvu2   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for oceanvu2

Aw, Balladeer, there you go again, poking my democratic buttons!  Senator Clinton is still a Senator, not a piece of toast.  She is a Senator who has mathematically lost the race to become the party's nominee for President.  

If, through manipulation and collusion, she manages to steal the nomination anyway, she'd be following in the footsteps of our current President, and that's when she will lose my respect.

I'm not surprised by the level of vitriol this excruciatingly long primary season has engendered against both of Senators Clinton and Obama.  Both represent, just by their persons, a possibility of an enormous change in the political landscape, and change is threatening to many folk.

Of course, it seems like more of the same is threatening to many folks also.  Keith Olberman, who is one of my favorite cable news comics, adds little to the discussion when he goes on one of his tirades against President Bush.  The current regime is, ah, toast.  Time to get over it and get on with it.

It seems as if Senator McCain has been granted limited immunity by the fearful hate mongers of most stripes. That's fine by me.  By any reasonable estimate, the man has provided long and admirable service to the nation.  By any reasonable estimate, Senators Clinton and Obama have provided shorter and admirable service to the nation.  Anyone in the public eye is fair game for satire, but there is a difference between satire and vituperative ranting.

Which, of course, never occurs in "The Alley."     

It's too bad Whoopi Goldberg didn't decide to run for President.  Then we would have a chance to elect a strong black woman.  Or maybe I'm thinking of Kathy Griffen.

Best, Jimbeaux  

[This message has been edited by oceanvu2 (05-15-2008 07:43 PM).]

Edward Grim
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3 posted 05-15-2008 03:53 PM       View Profile for Edward Grim   Email Edward Grim   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Edward Grim's Home Page   View IP for Edward Grim

No... I do not eat face toast.



P.S. It looks like Ralph Steadman penned "toast." Weird...



"Imagination is more important than knowledge." Albert E.
Balladeer
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4 posted 05-15-2008 06:39 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

Senators Clinton and Obama have provided shorter and admirable service to the nation.

Interesting comment, Jim. I haven't seen the admirable service to the nation conducted by the freshman senator who has spent most of his first term running for president. while introducing no meaningful legislation of his own. Actually, I haven't seen Hillary's admirable service to the nation, either. It is a matter of record that, during her time as senator of New York, she has done very little indeed, passing most of the duties off to her fellow senator. Did she do anything admirable during her time in the White House? Who knows?....her husband will not release the records. The best bumper I've seen so far is ELECT HILLARY! THE WHITE HOUSE NEEDS IT'S SILVERWARE BACK!

No, this thread did not ask if Hillary was toast as a person, rather as a presidential candidate. It's a reasonable question. The time will come when she will have to decide on which side her bread is buttered
oceanvu2
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5 posted 05-15-2008 08:10 PM       View Profile for oceanvu2   Email oceanvu2   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for oceanvu2

Deer:  Aw, give them the same break Lefties give Senator McCain.  All three seem to be reasonable, decent people with different notions of how the nation might proceed.  No President governs by fiat, except maybe President Bush, who simply changes the "fiatitudes" as his administration goes along.

A satiric notion:  Maybe the next administration of whatever stripe will outsource our military concerns entirely to civilian contractors, thus laying off the responsibility for causing death and chaos on the business sector.

And, c'mon Deer, why be disingenuous?  The post was about the nature of Hillary Clinton, not about the nature of toast.

Not incidentally, when I mentioned the vitriol occasionally never expressed in the Alley, I wasn't thinking about you.

Even though I amiably disagree with you on politics.  So amiably, in fact, that I am going to vote Democratic anyway.

Best, Jimbeaux

Balladeer
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6 posted 05-15-2008 08:53 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

The breaks the lefties give McCain are about to end real soon, I'm afraid. He's getting a pass while they they tangle with each other.

I will give them a beak, though....or, at least, Obama. I don't think he's a bad fellow who doesn't mean well. I'm sure he has good intentions. I just don't happen to think that his claim of having lived in another country for a time and having a grandmother in Africa satisfies his claims of experience enough in foreign affairs. Perhaps in another period of our history we could say, "Hey, let's give the rookie a turn at bat" but this ain't the world for an OJT president and commander in chief. Hillary? I don't even give her the benefit of meaning well...just being mean. I think the ex-white house travel office along with victims of her real estate dealings wil agree with me. Hillary is out for Hillary...period. She's proving that in spades now. She doesn't want to be president to make a difference. She just wants to be president.

You have an interesting choice but at least you have a choice. I don't even have that. it would be physically impossible for me to vote for either Obama or Hillary and I find it almost equally impossible to give my vote to McCain, especially after explaining lately his position on global warming and refusal to use our own natural resources to ease the energy crisis. I have never NOT voted but I may be on the bench this time, not willing to take my turn at bat. That's a sad thing...
Bob K
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7 posted 05-23-2008 03:19 AM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K


Dear Balladeer,

          I'd hate to see you not vote.  The press has been giving McCain as much or more of a break than the left wing has, and frankly, I think it's just as well.  I think the kind of smearing that passes for political dialogue tends to be highly distasteful, whether it's inside political parties (Remember the Bush-Reagan primaries, for example; and today's more one-directional Clinton-Obama bashing feels bruising even second-hand, listening to news reports) or between them.  I know we don't agree, but to have you not vote feels like something of a loss.

     McCain should be getting some scrutiny anyway, simply for his opting out of voting on today's extension of  G.I. Bill benefits to returning Iraq War troops.  Both Clinton and Obama returned to let their views be known and McCain let a fund-raiser get in the way.  Also, he apparently doesn't agree with the legislation and wants to support some other plan, but won't go on record for or against.  Along with his flip flop on the use of torture—previously he thought it would be bad for us because it would encourage its use against our own troops—this is a position that needs to be remembered by voters and needs to be explained clearly and in depth even by such an outstanding man as Senator McCain.

     Senator Obama's understanding of foreign policy seems at least the equal of President Bush's at the time when President Bush took office.  I didn't know you at the time, Balladeer, and don't know how you felt about President Bush's experience at that time.  If Senator Obama believes that you need to negotiate with those whom you have breaches in relations or poor relationships, then I believe he has a better grasp of foreign policy than President Bush does at this time.  While it's always good to continue talking with your friends, it's frequently life-saving to negotiate with your enemies.  And Senator Obama hasn't confused "discussion and negotiation" in his head with "appeasement," in the way that President Bush has.  It isn't always useful to confuse experience with understanding.  Vice-President Gore both had experience and understanding in diplomacy.  President Bush has experience but no apparent understanding, and Senator Obama has no experience that I am aware of but apparently a pretty good understanding.  I don't know about Senator Clinton, I suspect she has experience and understanding, but I don't see her showing any statesmanlike conduct at present to build my confidence in her.  It may not be possible in her current situation.

     I need to be reminded about the details of the travel office business with Hilary.  Part of the problem in considering her faults is that the Republican Party spent so much time and effort and money trying to find things they could use to smear her with so little success in terms of actual proof, that I tend to dismiss almost every accusation against her as another greasy smear tactic.  I've never seen any kind of legal proof on Whitewater that could stand up in court.  None of it has ever stuck to either Clinton, and not for lack of extraordinary time and money being spent on the matter.  Senator Clinton has been accused of making money, and I suspect she is guilty of this.  Is she unlike other successful corporate lawyers?

     Anybody who doesn't want to be President because they want to be President out of sheer ego, I suspect, won't have the motivation to get beyond the first serious smear campaign.  I know I wouldn't.  Wanting to do it for the good of others certainly wouldn't motivate me when people were spreading greasy rumors, and digging up half truths, and amplifying and distorting truths that I'd certainly rather forget and not deal with.  There may be others more selfless than I am about this, but I suspect the native ambition and ego has to be there to begin with.

     I think that's true for any candidate, by the way, not simply Senator Clinton; and I don't think it needs to be a bad thing.  Good presidents are able to transcend it and develop a hide like a rhino, and identify with the country, and are almost ruined when they have to leave office, the fusion between person and State becomes so complete.
Think well, and vote anyway.  I trust your conscience, whatever it says.

     Sincerely, BobK.
Balladeer
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8 posted 05-23-2008 12:25 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

I need to be reminded about the details of the travel office business with Hilary.  Part of the problem in considering her faults is that the Republican Party spent so much time and effort and money trying to find things they could use to smear her with so little success in terms of actual proof, that I tend to dismiss almost every accusation against her as another greasy smear tactic.  

An easy out used there, Bob.  As far as Travelgate and Filegate is concerned, it wasn't so much the Republican party trying to dig dirt on her, it was the news media itself doing the initiating. No charges filed against the Clintons? They didn't call him Slick Willie for nothing, sir. I would suppose by that manner of thinking, since so many accusations have been thrown at Bush with no formal charges sticking, then you should also say that you will be willing to dismiss every charge against him as another greasy smear tactic by the Democrats.

Travelgate was a travesty and the first of things that were to show Hillary's character as a White House dweller.

It began in May 1993, when seven longtime employees of the White House Travel Office were fired, after a brief investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The White House said the action was due to financial improprieties in the office operation. Critics said the actions were done to allow friends of the Clintons to take over the travel business and that the involvement of the FBI was unwarranted. Heavy media attention forced the White House to reinstate most of the employees in other jobs and remove the Clinton associates from the travel role. WIKIPEDIA

Why did the Clintons want the travel office employess out?

They alleged that friends of President Bill Clinton, including his third cousin[2] Catherine Cornelius, had sought the firings in order to get the business for themselves.[4] Dale and his staff had been replaced with Little Rock, Arkansas-based World Wide Travel, a company with a substantial reputation in the industry[6] but with several ties to the Clintons.[2] In addition, Hollywood producer and Inauguration chairman Harry Thomason, a friend of both Clintons, and his business partner, Darnell Martens, were looking to get their air charter company, TRM, the White House business in place of Airline of the Americas.[9][2] The Clinton campaign had been TRM's sole client during 1992, collecting commissions from booking charter flights for the campaign.[11] Martens wanted the White House to award TRM a $500,000 contract for an aircraft audit,[11] while also seeking Travel Office charter business as an intermediary which did not own any planes.[12] WIKIPEDIA

The Clintons wanted their pals in and the travel office out and they were willing to trash the reputations of the travel office workers to do it. They charged Billy Dale with felony embezzlement and criminal conversion and had their lawyers spend 12 days in court trying to make the charges stick. He was acquitted in less than two hours. Many travel office fired employees were reinstated and subsequently sued the governement for it's treatment of them.  Greasy tactics, Bob? Yep, you called it right....

The Congressional investigation continued; on March 21, 1996, Hillary Clinton submitted a deposition under oath to the House Government Reform and Oversight Committee, again acknowledging concern about irregularities in the travel office but denying a direct role in the firings and expressing a lack of recollection to a number of questions.

Yes, Hillary's memory is a thing to behold. During one period of testimony, she said "I don't recall 17 times in a 15 minute period. Can a woman with such a faulty memory be a good president?

Then, of course, you can go to Filegate, in which Hillary is reported to have used up to 900 fBI files to investigate republicans. No, it could not be proven, and when the files showed up in her possession after months of searching, she claimed she had no idea how they got there. Obviously another sleazy Republican tactic.  The list goes on, Bob. Actually I wanted her to get the nomination because I wanted a chance for all of these things to get out, the things that anyone else would have been tarred and feathered over and in which the Clintons always wound up getting a pass. Teflon, indeed. You can just type in Hillary scandals in your search engine and review the sleaziness anytime you wish.


As far as McCain's voting against the extension of the GI bill benefits, first let me say I can't imagine anyone more pro-GI than McCain. Second this bill is a travesty and should be a humiliation to the Democratic Party. They took a bill that  concerning military funding and then purposely went out and added every piece of pork to it which would attract a senator into signing it.....which they did.

"Our troops deserve better than having essential war time resources held hostage to billions in unrelated spending," said White House spokesman Tony Fratto. "Congress should pass a clean war funding bill when they return from Memorial Day recess."

They added police dept grants, repairing roads, health research projects, levee and coastal restoration, 200 million for the space shuttle program and anything else they could get to sway votes for it. It's very easy, and incorrect, to say "McCain voted against GI benefits." What he did was oppose everything else they junked up the bill with.


The diplomacy factor and experience factor?  Good question there. Obama has no experience whatsoever. He can say nothing more eloquently than anyone else but saying nothing does not get the job done. His desire to "talk" to our enemies would beg the question "Talk about what?"  If he thinks his factless glibness would do any good, he's sadly mistaken. As the leader of QATAR said, "This is not Mr. Rogers neighborhood over here. Arabs respect straight talk and force." What would he have to say to Iran, Hamas or even Cuba, for that matter? "Don't you fellas know that killing people is wrong?"  That wouldn't get too far. They understand only one kind of language. I don't see where Carter recently did any good. We have always tried to use diplomacy. The UN tries to use diplomacy while begging African dictators to stop the genocide and slaughter of millions and to please let aid in to help victims. What exactly has diplomacy done for us? France tried to be diplomatic with Hitler. That worked out well. The turning points of our history deal with the times we disregarded diplomacy and acted, like Kennedy with  the Cuban missile crisis, Truman ending WW2 and Reagan saying, Mr. Gorbachev, tear down that wall!" I can understand people not liking his "cowboy diplomacy" but I, along with many, find it refreshing. He calls down the "evil-doers" and the "axis of evil". He doesn't mince words. Ok, some will claim that he doesn't mince words because he doesn't KNOW many words and that's ok, too. I shudder to think of Gore having been president after 9/11. Say what you will about Bush methods, but we haven't been attacked here for the 7 years following and don't think it's because they haven't tried or lost desire to. I still feel that, despite everything you, Democrats in general, and even I, on occassion, feel that Bush handled poorly, history will judge him  very favorably, much more so than Clinton.

McCain will have a lot to answer for. I disagree with many things he stands for. Patriotism is not one of them. Neither is experience. Even without my vote, I cannot see him losing to an inexperienced, no-substance freshman senator or a lying, conniving, inexperienced (word I cannot use here). Should be interesting....

By the way, if you want a closer look at the real Hillary, you can find her here..  http://www.snopes.com/politics/clintons/hildabeast.asp

WARNING: No one who does not want to be subjected to foul language should go to that link!

Bob K
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9 posted 05-24-2008 02:46 AM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K




Dear Balladeer,

          Vote anyway, even if it's simply to balance mine off.

     One talks to one's enemies about the things that keep you at the point of wishing to open hostilities in the hopes of reducing the likelihood of that happening.  If one can think of no other reason to talk to one's enemies, there's always that to fall back on, isn't there?

     If you believe that all senator Obama can provide is factless glibness—and I see no evidence this is true—then I would suggest that even that somewhat neutral state of affairs would be preferable to our current situation where our President is given to abrasive provocations.  As with his recent comments about appeasement, characterizing those who would negotiate with their enemies as being akin to those like Neville Chamberlain who would give in to nazi aggression, he takes thoughtless and occasionally potentially damaging stances to our own national interests for short term political gain.  Within a day or two of his issuing those statements, Bill Gates had come out in favor of negotiations with Iran, and The Israeli Prime Minister announced that he had been in secret negotiations with Syria for some little amount of time now.
Imagine The Israelis as being Nazi appeasers, along with Bush's own CIA director and, Oh yes, General Petraeus, who also apparently announced that negotiations with Iran might be a decent idea as well.  That last one I heard on Air America, Mike, and I don't have a secondary source to back it up with yet, but they seem to be pretty good with their facts, though you don't enjoy their opinions.

     I have no hope that history will judge Bush harshly, or Clinton.  Neither case would make me feel happy.  I have my own fears about the outcomes, of course, but in the long run history will probably forget us.  I have only the faintest idea that there was a Cheops I.  I don't know if Cheops II was his son or came further down the line.  I feel fortunate to even think I know that the name was pronounced like the cut of lamb or pork Cheops.  I haven't the slightest idea who came before or after.

     I don't think that either President Bush or Senator McCain gets many points for saying they're holding out for a clean bill before they're willing to vote for it on the extention of G.I. benefits.  I don't think any bills go through congress without some sort of riders and ammendments tucked onto them.  There is always something you have to accept along with what you want in the main part of the bill.  Sometimes bills are purposely defeated by including "poison pill' ammendments in them so that no matter how wonderful the main elements of the bill may be, nobody is willing to sign on because the rider says that you have to strangle puppies every day before breakfast, and nobody's willing to have their name anywhere near a bill like that.

     With this bill, the number of Senators signing on was not only the vetoproof 67, but and addition 8.  I think 22 voted against it.  Kennedy was sick and couldn't be there, so it wasn't even that all the Democrats who could have voted for the thing were actually there.  Senator McCain wanting a perfect bill was not a decent solution.  Senator McCain thinking he had a better plan was not a better solution.  If he has a better plan, let him try to pass it later, as a revision of this one, after we get something in place that gives the extra coverage that these new vets need.

     I know he's a patriot.  I want him to show that he continues that fine tradition by prohibiting torture, by supporting the GI bill and by extending VA services for PTSD and for long term care of brain injury and nursing care treatment of those who are going to be needing it as a result of this war that he supports.  Once troops are injured or return home with some disability, you don't toss them on the trash heap of history, and you make sure that the funds are their to pay for them to lead lives second to none.  There should be no quibbles, even from patriots who are still the walking wounded of former wars, and who have earned our compassion many times over.

Balladeer
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10 posted 05-24-2008 08:09 AM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

Once troops are injured or return home with some disability, you don't toss them on the trash heap of history

Quite melodramatic in the early morning hours, aren't you, Bob? I do not see where the veterans are being tossed on any trash heap now. Can their conditions be improved? Of course, but to paint a picture with that type of rhetoric should be beneath you, I would think. No one needs to convince ME that patriots deserve all the country can give them.

Just because it was not an absolutely clean bill, sir? It went far beyond that. Yes, we know that congress is great at piggybacking things they want to bills (that's how they get their raises through) but they went overboard here, as acknowledged by every mjor news agency I listened to, including ABC, NBC and CBS. They were on such a mission to make it veto-proof by luring over as many Republicans as possible, they threw everything they could on it. Provisions for a kitchen sink may be in there somewhere. Why? So people like yourself can say "Look! Mc Cain is against helping veterans.", not necessarily a new tactic by congress.

You heard something on Air America? I thought they went bankrupt many months ago or are you referring to something you heard on there before they crashed? I personally had no opinion of them at all. I listened to them one time and found them to be, not only factless, but unentertaining. Obviously many people found that to be the case, since it never really got off the ground. Limbaugh wannabe's who think the key is screaming never really make it very far.

Besides, how far could Air America fly with only a left wing?
Bob K
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11 posted 05-24-2008 04:51 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K

Dear Balladeer,

          I am melodramatic 24/7.  How dare you try to limit me to early morning hysterics.  Ha!  Take that!

     Yes, the VA is in crisis.  We spoke about this before and I gave you non partisan links that went into detail about it, especially about the way that nursing care is being farmed out.  The administration is trying to force vets who are not appropriate for nursing home care into nursing homes; the staff are trying (with some success so far) to keep them from doing so.  Check out the links.  I made a point of keeping them non-partisan.  This is not something that should have politics mixed into it; it should be dealt with solely on the basis of what's best for the vets.  Profit should be kept the heck out of it too, unless it's an accidental byproduct or it's on a bid or salary or such.  Great for the inventors of the CAT Scan and the Pace Maker, which came out of VA research.  Services shouldn't need to be padded if we can supply them as well or as cheaply in-house.

     The DAV is also unhappy about the current situation, especially the way the VA is funded:
http://www.dav.org/voters/mandatory_funding.html

     They've kept it mild and to the point.  

     As for McCain being the Veterans friend, over the last few years that's not been the case so much.  Despite his claim to have supported veterans so well (and this surprised me, too, Mike, when I actually looked it up) there are several veterans groups that are unhappy with Senator McCain.  Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America thought McCain deserved a "D" for his voting record on this war.  DAV gave him a 20% rating.  Vietnam Veterans of America said McCain voted with them 8 times and against them 15 times in a list of key votes.

     There's more, but I was upset and didn't have the heart to include it.  I did get these from left wing sources, but I couldn't find any right wing sources that even mentioned Senator McCains veteran's rights voting records.  Perhaps if you check, you can find some that give more encouraging data.  I would be heartened to see it.

     The walking wounded of former wars that deserve our compassion was not a random reference to the poor guys in homeless shelters or who have a tough time holding on.  There are loads of them as well as the well adjusted well functioning folks who go about their daily life with memories they deal with.  Some are lucky enough not to have difficulties at all.  I was actually talking about the compassion I feel I owe the Senator himself, even having done as well as he has.  Yours, BobK.
 
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