Saturday, April 17, 2010

David Frum's Wife Still Frustrated that the Republican Party and Conservative Movement Don't Care About What Her Husband Has to Say (Update)



Later today, David Frum's wife, Danielle Crittenden, will put up a post at the Frum Forum about Governor Palin's speech last night in Hamilton, Ontario. Crittenden attended the speech, and it seems a safe bet that she'll write about how much she hated it.

Crittenden is certainly entitled to her opinion, but three things should be pointed out.

First, Crittenden's opinion appears to be a minority opinion among the attendees if you read the reports of the event from the Hamilton Spectator, Canwest News Service, and Vancouver Sun.

Second, her friends have effectively called her husband a liar. Well-respected conservative Richard Murray recently broke off his friendship with the Frums because David Frum deliberately misrepresented why the American Enterprise Institute parted ways with him. Murray wrote the following in the National Review (emphasis added):

I have known and liked David and Danielle Frum for many years, and what I am about to write will end that friendship. I regret that. But [Frum's] statement goes beyond self-serving. It is a calumny against an organization that has treated him not just fairly but generously....

I also think that for David to have leveled the charge that Arthur Brooks caved in to donor pressure, knowing that the charge would be picked up and spread beyond recall, knowing that such a charge strikes at the core of the Institute’s integrity, and making such a sensational charge without a shred of evidence, is despicable.

Finally, the Frums have been attacking Governor Palin since the 2008 election ended. They remain frustrated that Palin remains one of the most popular figures, if not the most popular figure, within the Republican Party and conservative movement. The Frums are frustrated by the fact that Republicans could win an unprecedented number of seats in the 2010 midterms, notwithstanding the fact that the Frums guaranteed us that Palin's brand of politics would ensure that we would become a permanent minority party. The Frums are frustrated by the fact that conservative and moderate Republicans are proudly wearing the "Party of Hell-No" label as a badge of honor. We have said "hell-no"... to the Frums.

Disclaimer: This post should not be read in any way as an attack on other bloggers at the Frum Forum as I believe some of them do good work for the Republican Party and the conservative movement regardless of any political differences I have with them. This post is about David Frum and his wife.

Update: Frum shamelessly plays the guilt-card by posting a letter that allegedly comes from a dying Democrat. I had the same response to this abhorrent tactic from Frum as the comment made by "Franco 2 at Apr 14, 2010 at 5:23 pm."

Update #2: Remember this exchange between Mark Levin and David Frum?



Update #3: David Frum's wife has finally published her article regarding Governor Palin's speech. First, Frum's wife predictably fails to note that Palin spoke off-the-cuff, extemporaneously without a teleprompter for nearly an hour.

Second, Frum's wife doesn't tell the FrumForum readership that the charity did not hire her as a speaker to give a political speech.

Third, Frum's wife claims that Palin's speech "was political theater—but not political leadership" as if she's qualified to discuss either. The tenor of Frum's article is one of pure frustration; their frustration is with the fact that millions of Americans listen to Palin, whereas almost nobody attends their symposiums about why the Republican Party should tax fats, support an increase in the government's role in healthcare, and adopt a carbon tax in order to stay viable as a political party.

Does Frum's wife really disagree with the idea that political leadership is convincing the electorate that your political opponents are wrong? If not, then she should probably pick up today's Las Vegas Review-Journal that featured an article discussing how a majority of Nevadans now question global warming and oppose cap-and-trade. In that article, Frum's wife would be surprised to find who exactly the Las Vegas Review-Journal is crediting with producing an argument that "has shown greater resonance in public discourse." I don't know how else to characterize producing an argument that "has shown greater resonance in public discourse" other than political leadership.

*Bumped

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Judi McLeod: Sarah Palin Could Be the Most Genuine, Real Politician I Ever Met



Judi McLeod of Canada Free Press attended Governor Palin's speech in Hamilton, Ontario Thursday night. The encounter obviously left quite an impression on her.

She wrote:

I attended the event thinking that perhaps Gov. Palin was getting a little full of herself, but I was wrong.

Sarah Palin could be the most genuine, real politician I ever met.

If only more politicians could be more like the down to earth Sarah Palin, we’d all be better off for it.

Read more here.

Contrast that wake up call to what Cathy Areu of Catalina Magazine had to say on Bill O'Reilly last night. She called Governor Palin a diva, and the only thing she had to back that up was the fact that the governor has made quite a bit of money since July.

So she has a beef with making money? Without any proof whatsoever, she insists that the money just has to change her because that's what money does.

O'Reilly handled her pretty mildly, and even so, he set her up to make herself look like the catty, jealous woman she obviously is. Perhaps Ms. Areu should have a talk with Judi McLeod. Maybe then she'd learn that some people can actually acquire the American dream through a combination of God's blessings and hard work without turning into the bitter loons Areu appears to be or the elitist brats she's accusing the governor of now being.

When O'Reilly said she can have money and still relate to others, Areu states:

"I don't think she can. I don't think she can. I don't think she can relate to the folks."

Three "I don't think she can"s--or four or five, for that matter--won't make her any more sensible, and certainly won't change the facts. No matter how many times she states her opinion, it remains an opinion--one that belies the experiences of a plethora of people, including Judy McLeod, Adrienne Ross, and so many of you. And you know what I always say anyway: "a person with an experience is never at the mercy of a person with an argument." Areu has an argument, and not even a good one. The last time I checked, "I don't think" won't hold up in court, although I don't think she thinks either!

To her insistence that "money changes a person," I say, yes, it allows you to pay your bills, give to charity, and do some things you weren't able to do before. So what's the problem? I suppose she would trust Governor Palin more if she had remained in office and allowed the sufferers of Palin Derangement Syndrome to continue their quest to bankrupt her family and her state.

Areu needs to take note of something else that really changes a person. It's called poverty. Most of us don't want any part of it. It's highly overrated!

I can't seem to get my brain wrapped around some people. Whether it's President Obama apologizing for American exceptionalism or Cathy Areu hating on the governor for taking advantage of the American dream, it's absurd. I've got a message for all who subscribe to such ridiculous mindsets: "Whether we like it or not," America is a place where we have the right to pursue happiness. Indeed, we are the envy of the world. And those of us with common sense will not apologize for taking advantage of what hard work and opportunities afford us.

As Judi McLeod discovered, once in Governor Palin's presence, it doesn't take long to realize that she is genuine and down to earth and that we need many more like her, people who possess a great love for God, country, and service. May we be blessed to be among those who have learned to balance the American dream with a servant's heart--and may we never apologize for it.

Below is Areu displaying Palin Derangement Syndrome:

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Las Vegas Review Journal Effectively Concedes that Palin is Winning the Argument Over Global Warming and Cap-and-Tax



Mason-Dixon has a new poll out about how Nevadans feel about global warming and the "cap-and-trade" proposal that liberals believe will remedy the purported problem of global warming. The results are quite ugly for Barack Obama and the Democrat Party:

Fifty-five percent of respondents believe global warming is "unproven and subject to debate," compared with 35 percent who consider it "a scientifically established reality," according to the poll by Mason-Dixon Polling & Research. The percentage of skeptics is up 11 points from a similar survey in 2008.... Fifty-five percent of respondents oppose legislation to restrict carbon gas emissions, while 37 percent support it.


The Las Vegas Review Journal effectively concedes that Sarah Palin has won this argument in a state that Barack Obama won easily in 2008 (emphasis added):

Opponents derisively refer to the proposal as "cap-and-tax" and depict it as an attempt by President Barack Obama and leading legislative Democrats to shift money and power from the private to the public sector.

"In addition to immediately increasing unemployment in the energy sector, even more American jobs will be threatened by the rising cost of doing business under the cap-and-tax plan," former Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin wrote in a Washington Post editorial on the subject.

[Palin's] argument has shown greater resonance in public discourse as the nation's economy struggles and fears of immediate job losses in the United States overshadow concern about broad, long-term consequences of an increase in global temperatures.

You can pretty much add 10-15 seats to the upcoming Republican victory this November should Barack Obama and the Democrat Party forge ahead with cap-and-trade. It's pretty interesting, but unsurprising, who the Las Vegas Review Journal believes to be the leader for the Republican Party and conservatives on this issue.

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Saturday Open Thread





Blackfive: Drum Hike: 7,000 Miles Across America for Military Families

Soldiers' Angels Germany: DUSTOFF Association Flight Medic of the Year

Michael Yon: A Whisper

Daniel J. Mitchell: The Joy of Tax Serfdom

Veronique de Rugy: Obama: People Making Less Than $200,000 Will See Their Taxes Go Down. Right.

Fox News: Obama's Mockery of Tea Party Stirs Tax Debate

Politico: Beltway insiders just can’t figure out why most of America is down on Obama

WSJ: Interview with Chris Christie: New Jersey's 'Failed Experiment'

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Louisville Courier-Journal: Sarah Palin speaks to crowd of 16,000 at Freedom Hall



That's quite a crowd for a left-of-center city like Louisville. The Louisville Courier-Journal reports:

Sarah Palin told a Freedom Hall crowd of about 16,000 Friday night that she was there to inspire women in their faith, not to talk politics.

But the 2008 Republican candidate for vice president acknowledged she couldn’t help but do the latter, saying politics “courses through my veins.”

She denounced this week’s Wisconsin federal court ruling that government observance of a National Day of Prayer was unconstitutional — which the crowd joined in booing. She asserted that America needs to get back to its Christian roots and rejected any notion that “God should be separated from the state.”

“Hearing any leader declare that America isn’t a Christian nation and poking at allies like Israel in the eye — it is mind-boggling to see some of our nation’s actions recently, but politics truly is a topic for another day,” Palin said.

You can read the entire article here. Here's another interesting excerpt from the article (emphasis added):
Tickets for the event sold quickly after Palin was announced as a speaker in earlier this year. Last year, the event drew about 5,000, Waldrep said.

WHAS-11 Louisville has a video report on the event. Regular commentator Piper4444205 was in attendance and she has a write-up as well.

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Friday, April 16, 2010

Fox News: Probe Into Palin Appearance Is Politically Motivated, Critics Say/Louisville Open Thread



Fox News reports that "[t]he investigation into a California university foundation that hired Sarah Palin to give a speech this summer is politically motivated, critics say." Critics question "why [California Attorney General and California gubernatorial candidate] Jerry Brown is continuing his investigation when university officials have said all funds for the event have been privately raised" and wonder if "[t]he probe could merely be a 'very thin disguise' on Brown's behalf to quash freedom of speech 'under the guise of fiscal responsibility.'"

In other news:

-She's speaking in Louisville tonight at the Women of Joy Conference. It doesn't appear to be a political speech but WHAS-11 Louisville has a pre-event write-up nonetheless. Regular commentator Defend America is in attendance.

-She's in central Illinois tomorrow evening (I also believe this speech is non-political). Several of our regulars are also attending this event. Thanks to Terri for the article.

-McCain 47, Hayworth 42. I actually suspect McCain's lead is larger because Hayworth is only winning the $20-$40K income group, while McCain has at least a seven point advantage in every other income group, with the exception of the $40K-$60K group, where he holds a 46-44 lead over Hayworth. These numbers suggest to me that the $20K-$40K group is overrepresented in this poll because most of the party's base comes from the $50K-100K crowd. In any event, either McCain or Hayworth would win the general election easily as Barack Obama is very unpopular in Arizona.

-I don't think the Governor would agree but Tucker Carlson tells Greta that Palin is the leader of the Tea Party movement.

-Stu Rothenberg confirms what any reasonable person already knew: Michele Bachmann is not in any danger of losing her seat.

What's going on today? I'm changing my Phoenix-Portland first round prediction to Phoenix in 4 now that Brandon Roy is out for the series.

Update by Doug: C4P reader Ayesha is in Kentucky tonight and sent us the following picture:



It looks like Freedom Hall is packed to the rafters.

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Going Green on Governor Palin



When a reporter begins an interview with the following statement:

Truth is, I came in wanting to hate the woman,
you know the interviewee didn’t have a chance from the get go and no matter how the interview turns out the writer will do their best to spin it negatively.

When I read Michele Mandel’s interview with Governor Palin, logically I should have stopped right there, however I was curious how she’s going to spin this one.

Judging by the title, one would assume that the interview was policy driven or that the discussion was dominated by the Governor's future presidential plans. But, by the author's own admission, in a not so flattering way, she notes that she had a short five minutes with the Governor and only personal questions were asked. So what conclusion about someone’s presidential qualifications can one come to by talking to someone for five minutes about how they balance motherhood with bringing up a family? Not much, I would say.

As with all those writers who simply hate Governor Palin she goes along with the standard often recycled and extensively debunked lies about the Governor including the one that “she preached abstinence-only sex education”. This has been debunked here, here and here.

Why all the hatred? It’s simple; it seems Ms. Mandel was more impressed with the Governor than she would have wanted you to believe. While not walking away from the interview with anything significant, there is something she did pick up. She does admit that the Governor is not as stupid or uneducated as the media (or she) has been trying to portray her:
[A] tad more articulate than she appeared during her disastrous run on the Republican presidential ticket in 2008
Okay, so again not so flattering but she must have been so impressed that maybe subconsciously she slipped that in again towards the end of the article:
Okay, so we said she was a little more articulate than we’d thought.
In other words, what Ms. Mandel really meant is “WOW, this woman is smart, how am I to report this? well, I can always take out the garbage”.

That’s the left for you, no matter what Governor Palin says or does if they can’t find anything to spin they’ll just go green on her: recycling the trash.

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Mr. President, is a strong America a problem?



From Gov. Palin's Notes in Facebook.

Asked this week about his faltering efforts to advance the Middle East peace process, President Obama did something remarkable. In front of some 47 foreign leaders and hundreds of reporters from all over the world, President Obama said that “whether we like it or not, we remain a dominant military superpower.”

Whether we like it or not? Most Americans do like it. America’s military may be one of the greatest forces for good the world has ever seen, liberating countless millions from tyranny, slavery, and oppression over the last 234 years. As a dominant superpower, the United States has won wars hot and cold; our military has advanced the cause of freedom in Iraq and Afghanistan and kept authoritarian powers like Russia and China in check.

It is in America’s and the world’s interests for our country to remain a dominant military superpower, but under our great country’s new leadership that dominance seems to be slipping away. President Obama has ended production of the F-22, the most advanced fighter jet this country has ever built. He’s gutted our missile defense program by eliminating shield resources in strategic places including Alaska. And he’s ended the program to build a new generation of nuclear weapons that would have ensured the reliability of our nuclear deterrent well into the future. All this is in the context of the country’s unsustainable debt that could further limit defense spending. As one defense expert recently explained:

The president is looking to eliminate the last vestiges of the Reagan-era buildup. Once the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are “ended” (not “won”), the arms control treaties signed, and defense budgets held at historic lows while social entitlements and debt service rise to near-European levels, the era of American superpower will have passed.

The truth is this: by his actions we see a president who seems to be much more comfortable with an American military that isn’t quite so dominant and who feels the need to apologize for America when he travels overseas. Could it be a lack of faith in American exceptionalism? The fact is that America and our allies are safer when we are a dominant military superpower – whether President Obama likes it or not.

- Sarah Palin

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New York Sun: Jewish Americans for Sarah Palin



Apparently Governor Palin's staunch support for our most important ally and friend in the Middle East, Israel, combined with the emerging "Obama Doctrine" of reckless indifference has sparked the creation of a new organization, Jewish Americans for Sarah Palin (JASP). Via the New York Sun:

President Obama’s recent demarche designed to increase pressure on Israel is having one immediate impact in the Jewish community — it is hastening the formation of an organization called Jewish Americans for Sarah Palin.

Plans for the new group are set to be announced on Sunday by a Philadelphia-based journalist and activist named Binyamin Korn, a former executive director of the Zionist Organization of America. The announcement is unlikely to make big news, as the group is embryonic, with an advisory committee of several journalists and academics.

[...]

What Jewish Americans for Sarah Palin is saying, Mr. Korn said, “is that the most articulate person in the public arena today in opposition to the Obama administration’s shift in policies against Israel is Sarah Palin.” He called her “very direct,” particularly on the controversy of Jewish settlements in Judea and Samaria, on terrorism policies, and on the emerging Obama doctrine.

Mr. Korn said his organization, which has not yet been incorporated, has had “no contact with Governor Palin or her campaign” and has no relation to her political action committee, known as SarahPAC. “We would be gratified if Governor Palin considers this a contribution to her efforts to influence American life,” Mr. Korn said. “We hope that she will feel we are supporting her, even though she is clearly not a candidate for any office at this time.”

Read the rest here.

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Bristol's Message



The following is a guest submission from C4P reader and commenter Uffda.


Bristol Palin sat down for an interview with MTV earlier this week, the most recent in a string of appearances to promote her new PSA aimed at encouraging teenagers to stop and think about the consequences of sex.

Before I jump into the PSA itself, I want to address the "She's promoting abstinence-only! Abstinence-only doesn't work!" issue that still has some people's pants in a bunch.

Bristol has made it pretty clear that abstinence is a choice she has now made for herself. She encourages others to make that same decision since it's the one way you can 100% guarantee you won't end up being a teen parent, but that does not equal some push demanding that abstinence-only programs be taught in all high schools. Is she not allowed to make a personal choice and encourage others to consider the same?

It mirrors the panic over the Tim Tebow Super Bowl ad. An inspiring story that might in some remote way persuade women to choose life is taken as an immediate threat to abortion rights everywhere.

Honestly, Lefties. Overreaction, much?

In the MTV interview below, Bristol gives her take on the slogan "pause before you play."

Pause before you play can mean anything to anybody. It could be pause and get a condom, or it could be pause and think about your future.

Yeah. She's definitely telling everyone to be abstinent with those condoms. (eye roll)

By the way, the idea that Sarah Palin is a staunch advocate of abstinence-only education is yet another media-driven myth:

Some reporters insisted that I favored abstinence-only sex education in public schools. "And see?" they said. "It didn't even work for her own daughter."

The media got that wrong too. The only time I had commented on sex education was in answer to a gubernatorial candidate question asking whether I supported abstinence education versus "explicit" sex education in public schools...

Given the choice, I answered that I would support abstinence education over "explicit" sex ed. I never said I didn't support contraception; I did. I also explained about being a longtime subscriber to the philosophy of Feminists for Life, a group of pro-life feminists who do not oppose contraception.

- Going Rogue, 237-238.

I have seen others take Bristol's PSA to mean that it's only not okay to be a pregnant teenager if you're poor. I can see how the PSA could be misconstrued, but the message to me is obvious.

One criticism of Bristol's situation came from the early hand-wringing of the Left that a high-profile teen mom would in some way "glamorize" teen pregnancy. I mean, come on, Bristol seems like a strong, independent young woman who's part of a successful family and has an adorable little boy who usually seems to fall into an angelic sleep just in time for the cameras to capture him. How hard can it be, right?

So the PSA's message is, "Okay, what if I wasn't famous?" (as most teenagers are not). "Do you really think the life of teen moms is 'glamorous'? Do you think my life is glamorous? This is the reality: it's a ton of hard work. Don't get caught up in the image or the fantasy TV version of what it might be like."

I hope that other young girls and even young guys see that having a child isn't glamorous at all, that it shouldn't be glorified. I think that other TV shows do glamorize sex and make it seem like there are no consequences to it, but there's tremendous consequences, and people need to start talking about those consequences.

Bristol is in a better situation than most teen moms, and she knows it. This also means she's in a position to do more good from that position than most, and she's doing a fantastic job of wielding that "double-edged sword":

Bristol was criticized from all sides as a hypocrite because she took up the cause of helping prevent teen pregnancy. Critics couldn't understand how she could love her precious son, Tripp, with all her heart, and still wish that he had been born ten years later.

She wanted teens to know that though they had choices to make about contraception, the only surefire way of preventing pregnancy is to not have sex. This pragmatic position was attacked by both the right and the left - the left because abstinence seems to be a dirty word and the right because even mentioning the word "contraception" "sends a mixed message."

Bristol wasn't trying to draft a national sex-ed policy. She just wanted to help her peers. She simply told teens what she has told her sisters: "Don't make the same mistake I did. Wait."

Going Rogue, 371.

Charita Goshay offers the following perspective:

Bristol Palin is arguably the world’s most famous teen mother, so her willingness to use her experience to educate others about the difficulties of unexpected parenthood has merit...

Avoiding sex and unplanned parenthood is not something kids will necessarily hear when their parents preach it — Palin herself is proof of that — but the message might get through when it comes from someone who’s been there, doing that.

In one public service announcement, Palin states: “It could mean pause and go get a condom, or pause and think about your life. And it could even be pause and wait for marriage.” That may not be exactly what abstinence-only advocates want to hear, but it’s realistic for a generation that has been weaned on sexual imagery....

If Bristol Palin can make just one teen stop and think long enough about the lifelong consequences of an irresponsible moment, her effort is worth it.

Bristol could have chosen to stay out of the spotlight after the election. It certainly would have meant less criticism. But she decided to put herself out there at the risk of being mocked by tolerant Leftists who have led entirely perfect lives and whose own morals leave absolutely nothing to be desired. All in the hopes that a few other teenagers might stop and think of the consequences.

And you gotta admire that.

You can view Bristol's PSA, as well as some behind-the-scenes footage and interview here.

Another MTV clip here.


* Cross-posted at Barbaricthoughts.

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Friday Open Thread





WSJ: Europe's VAT Lessons

Washington Times: Raising taxes on rich unlikely to cut deficit

Reuters: Senate Dems pave way for financial reform vote

IBD: California At The Breaking Point

Time: GM's Pension: A Ticking Time Bomb for Taxpayers?

Eric Singer: Small Business Vs. Big Government

WSJ: Larry Summers on Demand

White House: 2009 Tax Returns for Obama and Biden

Telegraph: Climate change: always room for doubt

The Guardian: US military warns oil output may dip

Bloomberg: Greece Closer to Aid Request; IMF, EU Due in Athens

VDH: After fifteen months of the Obama foreign policy, have things gotten any better?

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Now T-Paw's Advisers Are Using the Term "Common-Sense" Conservatives



Alex Isenstadt from Politico has a write-up about how Palin, Huckabee, Romney, and Pawlenty getting into the endorsement business and what it means for the 2012 presidential race. The article isn't particularly interesting, except for this nugget (emphasis added):

Pawlenty, for his part, is backing candidates his advisers like to call “common-sense conservatives”...“Gov. Pawlenty is helping conservative candidates that share his common-sense approach to issues,” said Pawlenty spokesman Alex Conant. “Our first round of endorsements highlighted candidates who will bring common sense to Washington.”

Isn't imitation the highest form of flattery? (For the record, I really like Alex Conant and he'll do a great job for Governor Pawlenty)

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Message from SarahPAC (Update: Unrelated Interview Clip from Boston Tea Party) (Update #2: Palin in Louisville Tomorrow Night)



In case you didn't get it, here was the e-mail from Governor Palin's PAC yesterday:

The tax man cometh... while tax cuts soon expire. This takes away the private sector's opportunities to grow and thrive and create jobs, and it diminishes America's work ethic.

According to the Tax Foundation, Americans worked for over three months of this year, from January 1 to April 9, before they earned enough to pay their federal, state, and local tax obligations. That's nearly 100 days out of the year to pay government, before we start earning money for our families and small businesses!

Did you know that Americans will pay more in taxes in 2010 than we do for food, clothing, and shelter combined?

The Tax Policy Center projects that 47% of American households will pay no federal income taxes this year. Either their income doesn't qualify, or they qualified for enough deductions and credits to have no income tax liability for the year. In fact, the bottom 40% of households on average will net money from the federal government in payments and services.

It’s time to bring sanity to our tax system and to simplify the tax code. Please send what you can to SarahPAC today and help the campaigns of good, strong, commonsense Americans who will clean up the mess that Washington has created.

America, as one people with one Constitution, deserves better.

With an Alaskan heart and with support for real hope for the future,

Sarah Palin

You can donate to her PAC here.

Update: BostonBruin found this video of Governor Palin answering some questions from a reporter at the Boston Tea Party.

Update #2: She'll be headlining tomorrow's Women of Joy event in Louisville, Kentucky.

Update #3: New state-by-state polling doesn't look promising for Barack Obama:

Obama Approval/disapproval (percentage of the vote won by Barack Obama in 2008)

Oregon: 47/48 (56.8%)
Washington: 51/45 (57.3%)
Kansas: 34/62 (41.6%)
California: 55/40 (60.9%)

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Thursday, April 15, 2010

Palin in Canada Open Thread/Democrat Polling Firm Finds Her Effectively Tied with Obama (Update: Hilarious Argument from the Left)



She's scheduled to speak tonight in Hamilton, Ontario in around half an hour. David Frum's wife is hilariously at the event.

Here is more information about the event. It doesn't seem like she's going to be giving a political speech tonight.

In other news, a Democrat polling firm finds her trailing Barack Obama by a slim 47-45 margin . The poll also found that she remains the country's most popular figure among conservatives and Republicans. Also, the majority of the undecideds in this matchup come from groups that comprise the base of support. Last year, this pollster found her trailing 55-35. It goes to show you how quickly things can change in a year.

NBA Playoff first-round predictions: Lakers over Thunder in 5, Mavericks over Spurs in 5, Suns over Blazers in 6, and Nuggets over Jazz in 7. Cavaliers over Bulls in 4, Magic over Hornets in 5, Hawks over Bucks in 6, and Celtics over Heat in 7.

What's going on tonight?

Update: This poll finds Romney's favorability rating falling and unfavorability rating rising among Republicans and conservatives while her numbers among these two groups have remained consistent in the last four months.

Update #2: Steve Kornacki desperately compares Barack Obama's polling situation to Ronald Reagan's polling situation in 1982. Let's take this argument to its logical conclusion: if Palin were down 20 to Obama, would Kornacki be comparing Obama's polling situation to George Bush Sr.'s polling situation in 1990?

Update III by Doug: Michelle Shephard of the Toronto Star has a post-speech report on Governor Palin's appearance in Hamilton here.

Update IV by Doug: More from Daniel Nolan at the Hamilton Spectator here.

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Become One of a Thousand Patriots For Allen West!



Readers will recall that Governor Palin recently endorsed Allen West in Florida's 22nd Congressional District against liberal Democrat Ron Klein. We took a more in depth look at Lt. Col. West in a subsequent post. In a piece at Conservatives4Congress, Uffda discusses an ongoing money-bomb which began Tuesday to help West remove Ron Klein and restore commonsense conservatism to Congress:

Lt. Col. Allen West is advertising his first major money bomb. Allen is running for Congress in Florida's 22nd District and has been endorsed by Sarah Palin.

From Allen:

Greetings Patriot,

Tuesday promises to be another exciting day for our campaign to win back Congress and set our country on a path to prosperity once again.

Sean Hannity will be appearing at the Villages Tuesday and asked me to join him on his tour across America. Sean has also asked me to join him on his Fox News Channel show the evening of April 13.

Tuesday also marks the day our campaign will be launching its first "money bomb". A money bomb is a tool to promote our campaign with conservatives across America…

Our campaign is growing stronger every day. Our message of conservative values and constitutional government resonates with voters of all types. Wherever I travel across the district more and more people tell me they are fed up with Congress and want to defeat the Obama-Pelosi-Klein team.

You have been generous with your support in the past. We'd like to ask for your help again by making Tuesday, April 13 a special day for our campaign.

Watch the Sean Hannity show Tuesday April 13th as we discuss how best to return our country to its conservative roots.

Visit our www.1000patriots.com site and make a contribution.

Share this email with five of your friends. I thank you in advance for your support.

Steadfast and Loyal,

Allen B. West.


Become one of Allen's 1,000 by joining here by April 15th. Let's elect an American hero to Congress!



Allen is currently sitting at around 722. Let's put him over the top!

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Governor Palin Smacks Obama Over His "Dominant Military" Remark



In a post two nights ago, Ian linked to Obama's latest bit of foreign policy nonsense. Like Ian, I had to listen to it more than once to make sure it really was our president and not some clever bit of cut and paste by an enterprising right-wing conspiracist out to make the President look incompetent. But alas, Obama doesn't need any help in that area. For those who may have missed it, our illustrious commander-in-chief was lamenting the fact that America has a strong military:



I have not been able to find the words to fully express my horror that this guy is in charge of our national security. Today, Governor Palin condensed some of the thoughts we all must be feeling into a succinct Tweet:

Unbelievable, Outrageous“Whether we like it or not,we remain a dominant military superpower”-Obama YES,Mr.Pres,we LIKE knowing we r strong

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Thursday Open Thread





PJTV: A Day In the Life of a Taxpayer, Part 1 (Part 2 here)

WSJ: Crony Contracts

Glenn Reynolds: Michael Granof: Released to Near Silence, the U.S. Treasury 2009 Financial Report Shows Dire Course

Neal McCluskey: “Stimulus” = Education Funding Floor?

Kathryn Nix: Side Effects: Obamacare’s “Donut Hole” for Young Adults

WSJ: U.S. Faces Shortage of Doctors

VDH: It Is Not the Bomb, but Who Has It

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Boston Tea Party Wrap-up



My eagerly awaited predictions for the NBA Playoffs First Round come tomorrow but until then, here's the wrap-up for the Boston Tea Party:

-NBC Nightly News

-Rush Limbaugh

-Daily Caller

-Boston Globe

-New article from the Boston Herald

-Fox News Special Report (I know it's a Media Matters link but they do have the video)

-Kennebec Journal

-Belmont Citizen Herald

Any of our Boston regulars been to the Union Oyster House?

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Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Trial Coming Up for Accused Email Hacker



The trial for David Kernell, who is charged with hacking into Governor Palin's email during the 2008 presidential campaign, begins next week. In the lead up to the trial date there has been a flurry of pre-trial motions and rulings.

Several defense motions were denied in recent weeks by U.S. Magistrate Judge Clifford Shirley. The Knoxville News Sentinel explains:

[Defense attorneys] have filed numerous appeals so far of decisions rendered in the case by U.S. Magistrate Judge Clifford Shirley.

So far, Shirley has turned aside Kernell's bids to have charges of wire fraud, anticipatory obstruction of justice and identity theft tossed out, the defense team's challenge of Shirley's authority to issue out-of-state search warrants for Internet service providers, and their push to toss out evidence obtained from a laptop computer.

Shirley also has largely refused the attorneys' drive to probe records about who had access to Palin's personal e-mail account and how exactly Palin used it to conduct gubernatorial business. He also nixed most of the defenders' requests for a better glimpse at the government's trial strategy.

In the federal system, it is the magistrate judge who shoulders most of the burden for pre-trial rulings. It is up to the judge who will preside over the trial, in this case [U.S. District Judge Thomas] Phillips, to decide any appeals of the magistrate judge's decisions.

Kernell's attorneys appealed several of Judge Shirley's rulings. The trial judge, U.S. District Judge Thomas Phillips, denied several defense appeals today, according to the Associated Press:

At a pretrial hearing Wednesday, the judge in the felony case against David Kernell denied a defense request that prospective jurors answer a questionnaire to see if they have "strongly held opinions" about Palin.

[...]

U.S. District Judge Thomas Phillips denied the questionnaire motion at Wednesday’s hearing, saying there is no reason to treat prospective jurors differently from other cases. He said they will have the opportunity to say if they don’t believe they can be fair.

[...]

Phillips also denied a defense motion to force Palin to turn over all e-mails from her personal e-mail account that Kernell is accused of illegally accessing.

Judge Phillips also laid out how jury selection will work:

The judge outlined the jury selection process for both sides. He said 100 people will be in the jury pool, with 50 called the first day. The defense will get 11 peremptory challenges, the prosecution will get 7. Fourteen jurors will be selected to hear the case, 12 actual jurors and 2 alternates.


The final pre-trial hearing is scheduled for next Monday:

Final pre-trial oral arguments are set for Monday, April 19, at 9:00 a.m. Judge Phillips said he will rule on them by 5:00 p.m. Monday. Assistant U.S. Attorney Greg Weddle waived his right to 14 days to respond, saying the prosecution will be ready for trial Tuesday.

The governor has been subpoenaed by the prosecution and is expected to testify at the trial.

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UPDATE: The Obligatory Spin by the Lamestream Media Over SarahPAC's Latest Filing



The latest media narrative seems to be that Governor Palin is only out to make money for herself. Yesterday, they set things up with speculation on how much the governor has earned personally over the last year. There were also reports on her requests for speaking engagements, which included water and bendable straws (how dare she ask for water). Ed and Allahpundit at Hot Air addressed those stories (see here and here).

Today, the stories are about SarahPAC's fundraising and donations. They imply that the PAC hasn't raised enough money and donated enough money to others.

So what's the real story here? The argument that Palin's only interested in herself falls apart when you look at what she's actually been doing.

It comes down to when and where SarahPAC's money is best spent, and what the best use of Palin's time and influence is. Should SarahPAC focus on fundraising for itself early in the election cycle, or should the focus early on be elsewhere? She spent a significant part of the first quarter of 2010 speaking out -- and raising money -- for conservative causes. Joshua Livestro reported on Monday that she raised an estimated $2 million for conservative and Republican causes in the first quarter of 2010.

Should Palin donate $5,000 to a candidate in January for an election that will take place in the fall? If she intends to donate to a candidate for an August or a November election, doesn't it make more sense to donate closer to the election?

Palin's real "donations" come from her endorsing, fundraising and campaigning for candidates. Let's take a recent example: Michele Bachmann. Governor Palin donated $3,500 to Bachmann's campaign in 2009. In addition to the implied endorsement from the donation, Palin also explicitly endorsed Bachmann. So while SarahPAC only gave $3,500, that donation and the accompanying endorsement likely attracted donations that totaled far more. Palin also made a high profile campaign stop with Bachmann and held a $500 a ticket fundraiser for her that raised an estimated $500,000.

Palin chose in the first quarter of 2010 to focus on things besides doing fundraisers for her PAC and collecting chits for a potential future run at the White House. She focused on speaking up for common sense conservative causes and winning the 2010 elections. Instead of holding fundraisers, she fought ObamaCare. She sometimes took time out to make some money for her family (the horror!).

Let me boil it all down for you: Palin raised a lot of money for conservative causes in the first quarter. The media is mostly ignoring that and complaining that she didn't raise enough for herself. Simultaneously, they're complaining that she made too much money personally. Welcome to Sarah Palin's world.

So what can we expect from SarahPAC as we get closer to the 2010 elections? SarahPAC's treasurer says you can expect more fundraising as the 2010 elections heat up:

Crawford said the PAC plans to be "far more aggressive" in its fundraising efforts as the midterm elections heat up. He noted that the PAC has held just one fundraising event so far in 2010, a small fundraiser in Tennessee. There will be more fundraisers, he said, along with the mail program.

One more note: Hotline titled their post on this topic, "Palin Spends More De-Icing Planes Than For Candidates." The post says:

Ex-AK Gov. Sarah Palin (R) spent more money to de-ice her private jets than she did donating money to candidates during the first 3 months of the year, according to new filings made with the FEC.

The filings show Palin's political wing, Sarah PAC, paid a FL-based airplane service company $14K to de-ice a private jet.

Ben Smith and Dave Weigel have already pointed out on Twitter that this isn't accurate:

benpolitico: Palin aide tells me the de-icing charge is really only about $7k, less than she gave to candidates. And in Dulles, no less.

daveweigel: @benpolitico Yeah, read the report -- the $7k is listed twice, for charge and for cost.

Care to update, Hotline?

UPDATE by Sinistar:
Mitt Romney's "Free and Strong America PAC" files on a monthly basis. As such, March's numbers haven't been released but here are the rounded numbers categorized for January and February of 2010.

FREE AND STRONG AMERICA PAC, INC - JANUARY 2010
$66,500 for telemarketing for PAC
$85,000 for printing/postage for PAC
$16,000 graphic design and creative fees for PAC
$6,000 for data management for direct marketing
$42,000 web services
$13,000 e-strategy consulting and phone service
$23,000 for financial consulting
$1,500 in bank fees
$2,800 for travel expense reimbursement
and $99 to "House Victory 2010" (In-Kind - List Rental - Fair market value)


FREE AND STRONG AMERICA PAC, INC - FEBRUARY 2010
$29,000 for telemarketing for PAC
$67,500 for printing/postage for PAC
$10,500 for PAC promotional material
$7,000 for data management for direct marketing
$64,000 web services
$28,000 for financial consulting
$5,000 in bank fees
$2,500 travel expenses
and $827.63 to the "Mass. Republican State Congressional Committee" (In-Kind - List Rental - Fair market value)


As you can see, Mitt hasn't done much donating to specific candidates so far this year at all. Rather, it appears that he is mostly spending PAC money to raise PAC money. Odd that we haven't seen much analysis of Romney's PAC filings, don't you think? But then we live in a world where the AP feels it necessary to employ a dozen reporters to fact check Palin's "Going Rogue" while they completely ignore stories of real journalistic merit.

Oh, and just because I feel extra grumpy, check out the cover of the free excerpt of Romney's "best selling / New York Times #1" book that I received in my bag of swag at SRLC 2010.

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CSU Stanislaus president: Palin fundraiser a 'good thing for this university'; Updated



California State University Stanislaus President Hamid Shirvani responded today to the attacks on Governor Palin's upcoming speech at a California State University, Stanislaus Foundation fundraiser:

CSU Stanislaus President Hamid Shirvani has issued the following information and statements in response to Attorney General Edmund G. Brown Jr’s announcement Tuesday evening that he has launched a broad investigation into the California State University, Stanislaus Foundation to include an examination of its finances and the alleged dumping of documents into a university dumpster.

“We welcome the investigation and expect it will clarify how a foundation document could have ended up in a state senator’s hands,” said CSU Stanislaus President Hamid Shirvani.

The addendum of the campus’s contract with Sarah Palin released yesterday at a press conference by state Senator Leland Yee was in a recycle bin in the office of CSU Stanislaus Foundation Executive Director Susana Gajic-Bruyea. After learning about the allegations made at the press conference, Gajic-Bruyea searched for the document in her private recycling bin and found only that document missing. Campus police are currently investigating the circumstances surrounding the document taken from the recycle bin.

In response to Tuesday morning’s press conference hosted by Yee, California State University, Stanislaus Foundation Board President Matt Swanson made the following statement:

“It’s a dark day when an entity that’s sole purpose is to raise money for student services and university programs is falsely accused of wrong-doing. The foundation is a 501c3 that raises money for the university. Our sole aim is to raise money for university programs and student services. Given declining state support for higher education, private fundraisers are more vital than ever.”

In response to allegations that documents were destroyed, Russ Giambelluca, CSU Stanislaus Vice President of Business and Finance said, “No one was instructed to destroy vital information, and no one did so.”

Since announcing the Gala event, CSU Stanislaus has faced a myriad of false accusations and implications from a variety of individuals and organizations.

“The CSU Stanislaus Foundation is not interested in political theater or in being used as a political pawn. Its mission is to raise money to support the university, and it is doing just that by bringing a speaker to campus like Sarah Palin who is driving ticket sales to unprecedented levels,” said Shirvani.

Shirvani continued, “The CSU Stanislaus Foundation responded to Public Records Act requests for a copy of the contract and speakers fee by stating that as a 501c3 foundation, it is not subject to the Public Records Act and for good reason. The Washington Speakers Bureau contract includes a confidentiality clause that the Foundation cannot breach even if it wanted to. The Foundation has clearly stated that it will be happy to provide the net costs and net revenue of the event, which would be sufficient for anyone whose true goal is transparency. The Foundation has made it clear that no public funds are being used to support the event. The Board President has also made it clear that no existing foundation funds are being used to support the event. Every dime used to pay for this gala is new, privately-raised money.

“The June 25 Gala is expected to raise between $100,000 and $200,000, which will go toward enhancing students’ education. That is money that would otherwise not be available to support our students. The Foundation Board should be applauded for working hard to fulfill its mission by raising money to support CSU Stanislaus when state support for higher education continues to dwindle.

“Sarah Palin’s speaking engagement will raise more money than any single fundraiser that CSU Stanislaus has had in the past, including from people who have never previously donated to the university or supported university events. Whether one agrees with her politically or not, the money raised from this event is a good thing for this university.”

More here.

Update: The AP's story can be found here.

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Trey Grayson Jumps The Shark; Updated



In a February post we reported that Governor Palin had endorsed Dr. Rand Paul in the Kentucky Senate race to succeed retiring Republican Senator Jim Bunning. This, of course, ruffled some feathers in the GOP establishment. Since she endorsed Dr. Paul, he has maintained a double digit lead in the Republican primary, with his current lead in the RCP average at a healthy 15.3 points. Trey Grayson, Dr. Paul's establishment Republican opponent, is unhappy with his sinking electoral prospects and as such is not above a bit of d*uchebaggery, as the WaPo's David Weigel notes:

The establishment candidate (I feel comfortable calling him that as he is running against Rand Paul) in Kentucky's GOP primary for Senate gets asked about Sarah Palin by the Louisville Courier-Journal editorial board. He doesn't ace the question.



Does Grayson think Palin is qualified to be president? "Not today." Did he think she was in 2008? "She wasn't running for president. I think she had the position to be vice president, but she wasn't running for president. I thought Sen. McCain was the best candidate to be president in the last election."

Is this a fair thing to ask Grayson? Well, Palin has endorsed his opponent, Rand Paul. Grayson initially reacted to the endorsement by raising questions about whether Palin had actually issued it, then lumped Palin in with the "outsiders" supporting Paul. So Palin's been a presence in the race.

This unforced error by Grayson is asinine on several levels. It's difficult to imagine how this helps Grayson with conservative voters in Kentucky. You know, the ones that decide primary elections. Does Grayson think attacking Governor Palin, wildly popular with Kentucky Republicans, is going to help him erase his deficit with Rand Paul? Am I missing something? It's hard to see Grayson's "strategery" here.

If Grayson really wants to improve his standing, the only argument that makes sense for him is to tout his slightly higher poll numbers against the two potential Democrat candidates in the general election. Even this is a weak argument since Grayson's lead over front running Democrat candidate, Lt. Governor Dan Mongiardo, is only 1.2 points higher than Paul's. Both Paul and Grayson are leading Mongiardo by low double digits. Still, the electability argument is the only one Grayson really has, regardless of how weak it is.

Grayson received another blow a couple hours ago when the retiring Senator Bunning followed Governor Palin's lead and endorsed Rand Paul. Via Daniel Foster at the National Review:

Sen. Jim Bunning (R., Ky.) has endorsed Dr. Rand Paul in the Kentucky Republican Senate primary, giving his imprimatur to Paul's effort to win the seat he will vacate at the end of the year.

From Bunning's release:

“In the United States Senate, Kentuckians need a strong, principled conservative to stand up to the liberals and establishment politicians that run Washington. Kentucky needs a conservative who will say no to bailouts, stop the government takeover of our economy, end wasteful spending, and bring down our national debt. And Kentucky’s families need a conservative who believes in traditional values and the rights of the unborn. In 2010, there is only one such conservative running for the United States Senate — Dr. Rand Paul.

“Dr. Paul will be his own man in Washington, not beholden to the special interests and beltway insiders who come looking for handouts on a daily basis. Instead, Dr. Paul will be a strong voice and advocate for the people and values of Kentucky. Dr. Paul is a man of his word who can be trusted to do what is right for Kentucky and the nation.

“I know what it takes to stand up for the conservative principles that are needed to make America a better place for our children and grandchildren. Dr. Paul shares those same core values and has the courage and conviction necessary to make sure the voices of Kentucky’s workers, families, retirees, and children are heard in Washington. That is why I am supporting Dr. Paul to be our next United States Senator from Kentucky.”

I can't help but wonder if Grayson got wind of Bunning endorsement before he made it today and saw this as the final nail in his coffin, so to speak. His decision to disparage Governor Palin today with these buffoonish remarks is clearly a sign of desperation from a sore loser who seeks to blame others for his own shortcomings, both as a candidate and as a person. Rand Paul has had nothing but praise for Governor Palin and is clearly the best candidate in this race. Go to his website and support him against Trey Grayson.

Update: (H/T Josh Painter) Redstate's Erick Erickson weighs in on Trey Grayson:

The man has refused to take a substantive position on bailouts, etc. for the longest time. He’s peddled false smears against Paul that Paul is pro-choice. In fact, Rand Paul is very much pro-life, but thinks because abortion is a non-constitutional issue contrary to Roe v. Wade, it is an issue for the several states to ban and not for Congress, except for the bit about defunding federal payment for abortion, which he gladly supports doing.

Then there is the latest.

Grayson is behind in the polls with not much longer to go. He has hurled as many wild attacks at Rand as possible. He is now even attacking Rand for being a conservative on issues like Medicare and Social Security. Seriously — Trey Grayson is attacking Rand Paul for wanting to reform both entitlement programs, including allowing workers to invest their own social security money as they see fit.

And the icing on the cake? Now Trey Grayson is attacking Sarah Palin because Palin endorsed Rand Paul. Grayson says Palin is unfit for office and he questions her judgment.

This, ladies and gentlemen, is the Republican that D.C. Republicans say we should all get behind.

Not me.

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Markos, Do You Really Want to Play the Crowd Attendance Game with Palin and Obama in Massachusetts? MSNBC reports 10,000 in Attendance at Palin Event



Markos Moulitsas, founder of the Daily Kos, retweeted the following:

Only 5k in Boston for Palin. Maybe she should get McCain to help her bump up the crowd

I'm going to assume that Markos agrees with the tweet that he retweeted. Markos, do you really want to play the attendance game with Massachusetts?

When Barack Obama visited Massachusetts on the eve of the Senate election in January, he drew around 1500 people to his event. Massachusetts is one of the most liberal states in the country. Also, the local Iowa media reports that only hundreds attended President Obama's speech last month in very liberal Iowa City.

The Associated Press has reported that around 5,000 came out to the Boston Tea Party with Governor Palin as its keynote speaker. MSNBC's Domenico Montanaro reports that around 10,000 people attended the event.

If you are going to argue that a turnout of 5,000 (if you accept the most conservative estimate and ignore the MSNBC estimate) in one of the most liberal states in the country is weak, then what do you call Obama speaking before 1,500 people in one of his base states on the eve of a Senate election?

Markos has been pretty quiet too about this as well.

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Governor Palin's Boston Tea Party Speech; Updated: Boston Police Report 13,000-16,000 at Today's Event



Via The Right Scoop:




Update: Ed Morrissey's take on her speech in Boston here.

Update II: (H/T defendAmerica) Governor Palin tweets:

Thx Boston! T Party addressed fear of losing exceptionalism in freest,most generous nation on earth. We'll fight2bring it back&restore U.S!


Update III: More on her speech in Boston from Andy Barr, Jim Treacher, Molly Line, CBS11, and Jim Hoft.

Update IV: Jim Hoft at Gateway Pundit has updated his post with a crowd total from today's event in Boston:

Ken Pittman called to say that police told him that there were 13,000-16,000 patriots at the rally today – By far the largest conservative rally he’s been to in Boston.

Photos from the event here.

Update #5: MSNBC and the Christian Broadcasting Network report around 10,000 in attendance.

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Wednesday Open Thread




Chosin from the GI Film Festival on Vimeo.

IBD: ObamaCare: Reform's Nasty Little Surprises

WSJ: Incentives Not to Work

Washington Times: Income falls 3.2% during Obama's term

NYT: "[C]onsumers are about to face a new financial burden: a sustained period of rising interest rates. That, economists say, is the inevitable outcome of the nation’s ballooning debt and the renewed prospect of inflation as the economy recovers from the depths of the recent recession."

David Weinberger: Automakers to Taxpayers: Can We Get Another Bailout?

VDH: A Tour Through Recession America

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Governor Palin's Keynote at the Boston Tea Party Open Thread



She's scheduled to speak at 10:40 A.M. EST. You can watch the speech live here. I'm putting this thread up early because some of us are late-risers out in the West.

To keep you occupied before the speech, here's what I've got from the Boston media and others:

-Here are previews of the event from the Boston Herald and the Eagle Tribune.

-The editorial board for the Boston Globe surprisingly writes that "Palin, whose commitment to grass-roots reform remains her most appealing trait, deserves credit for motivating her supporters" and that "Palin’s visit is a plus for Boston, and she should be welcomed by all."

-Howie Carr pens a hilarious op-ed in the Boston Herald titled "Just keep on driving, limousine liberals."

-I had to see the following from Barack Obama to believe he actually said "[w]hether we like it or not, we remain a dominant military superpower."

-She's speaking in Canada tomorrow evening to a sold-out dinner audience in very liberal Hamilton, Ontario.

Update by Doug: (H/T Josh Painter) Marco Rubio responds to Governor Palin's offer to help his campaign:

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Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Pre-Boston Tea Party Open Thread (Update: Allahpundit takes down the other Palin story) (Update #2: Where You Can Watch Her Speech)



Joe Dwinell from the Boston Herald tweets that "Sarah Palin hits Boston tonight on eve of Tea Party. The Common is already buzzing." I know some of our regulars are heading to the event scheduled to start tomorrow morning at 10 AM EST. Drop a tip or comment if you are planning on going. Palin is scheduled to speak at 10:40 AM ET.

Barack Obama spoke to roughly 1,500 people the last time he was in the very liberal state of Massachusetts. It should be interesting to see how tomorrow's crowd compares to the size of the crowd that went to hear Barack Obama speak in one of the bluest states in the country. We are comparing apples to apples as both events are free. The Tea Party Express is requesting aerial coverage of the event.

In other news:

-So the media has uncovered the fact that Governor Palin has made a lot of money these last nine months. I'm trying to figure this out: what's the story? Is the story that she's one of the most sought after speakers in the country or that an unbelievable number of people bought her book? In any event, it's not unusual for politicians to make money in or out of office. A commentator at Hot Air notes (see this link for the sourcing on the information regarding the Clintons and Obama):

Former president Bill Clinton, who came to the White House with modest means and left deeply in debt, has collected nearly $40 million in speaking fees over the past six years, according to interviews and financial disclosure statements filed by his wife, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.).
Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton took in $109 million since 2000
Fueled by book profits, Obama earned almost $7million since 2004, when he was elected to the Senate.
To which we can add:
Al Gore, $100,000 Man
In the $40,000+ category: Madeline Albright, among the many others from the Washington Speakers Bureau alone.

-She's tied with Mike Huckabee for the lead in the North Carolina GOP primary.

-The Gwinnett Daily Post reports that she'll "make a return trip to Gwinnett County, this time in support of a national ministry...This time, Palin will be the keynote speaker for an event presented by The P.U.R.E. Ministry Project, a ministry of Zachariah’s Way. The P.U.R.E. Ministry Project is a nationwide effort to assist churches in including, ministering to and caring for individuals with special needs and their families."

-David Brody from the Christian Broadcasting Network wonders how the Palin and Bachmann team compares to other famous female duos. (around the 16:30 minute mark of the video)

-I think it's safe to say Governor Palin made a favorable impression on the typically left-leaning New Orleans media.

What else is going on today?

Update: AP does a good job slamming the door shut on another story that cropped up today.

Update II by Doug: The media's sudden interest in Governor Palin's privately financed travel arrangements (to which Ian referred in the above update) is baffling considering their disinterest in the outrageous amounts of money members of congress and their staffs waste on taxpayer financed junkets abroad.

Update III: Hmmmmm....

Update IV: Some questions have arisen as to where you can watch the speech if you do not plan on attending in person. WHDH-TV will stream the speech live.

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Michael Graham: Let the Tea Party Begin; Updated



Unless you've been living under a rock (or relying on MSNBC for news), you're aware of Governor Palin's appearance tomorrow at the Tea Party Express rally on the historic Boston Common. Boston is one of the most liberal cities in America and as such we should expect a warm welcome in the great progressive tradition of free speech and tolerance of opposing viewpoints, right? This historic city is, in many respects, the birthplace of the great American experiment and is indeed the home of the original Boston Tea Party. Surely the liberal citizens of this renowned city would want to uphold these long-standing traditions and endeavor to approach such an event with an open mind. Fortunately for us, Michael Graham has written a piece today for the Boston Herald in which he chronicles some of the "preparations" which are underway for this event by our effete superiors, the self-anointed crème de la crème of modern progressive society:

Hey, I can see Palin Derangement Syndrome from my house!

You’ll see it too if you come to Boston Common tomorrow morning when Sarah Palin and the Tea Party Express roll into town. I’ll be broadcasting my radio show live during the event and I’ve been asked to be part of the program as well. But what I’m really looking forward to is seeing the gathering of hate-spewing, anger-crazed lunatics.

Or as they’re more commonly known, “Massachusetts liberals."

What - you think the Tea Partiers are angry? You obviously haven’t picked up the latest copy of the Weekly Dig, a local “progressive” publication that invited readers to design signage to welcome Palin and push back against Tea Party hate speech.

Among the signs published are several featuring a word very similar to “witch,” a couple of swastikas, a Hitler mustache and - in an odd move by anti-Second-Amendment liberals - one with an American flag, a bleeding tea bag and numerous bullet holes.

Stay classy, Boston liberals!

[...]

Anyway, Palin and the Tea Party movement are nothing but name-calling dolts, and so the only responsible, progressive thing to do when they come to Boston is to show up at their rally, wave idiotic signs and call them names.

No, really. According to several “progressive” Web sites, local libs are organizing to do just that on the Common tomorrow. “Nitwit central is headed our way, Boston,” warns one left-wing site bemoaning the “hatred being generated” by Tea Party protests. The Web site is urging followers to make their own signs parroting the “extremism” liberals expect to find there. So if you see a wildly offensive racist sign in downtown Boston - thank a liberal!

Why don’t supporters of Obamacare, the stimulus and other failed policies just have their own rally supporting their ideas? Other than because, well, they haven’t actually worked, I mean?

[...]

Voters and taxpayers are going to show up tomorrow and keep doing what we’ve been doing for a year now: Make arguments and ask questions. How do the economics of Obamacare make sense? Who’s going to pay the $3 trillion in new debt? Why should we tell our enemies in advance when we will or won’t use nukes?

And the left will keep responding with insults instead of answers. But at least they’re entertaining. There’s nothing funnier than a liberal protesting right-wing hate by waving a “Palin Is A Nazi B**ch” sign.

Read Graham's entire piece here. Ah, the civility of our societal betters is inspiring. I hope the Governor has adequate security in Boston to deal with the refined behavior of the residents of this hub of enlightened sophistication.


Update: The Tea Party Express is aware of the threat posed by Democrats in Boston and are taking some precautions. Via Tiffiny Ruegner:

Over the past several days we've received numerous reports of efforts by Leftists to "Crash the Tea Party" including a planned effort to disrupt our "Boston Tea Party" with Governor Sarah Palin.

As a result we have scrambled to hire additional security personnel, have increased security measures and stage protection and now have security staying for 12 hours overnight at the rally location beginning this evening.

More here.

Update II: (H/T terri) Jim Hoft at Gateway Pundit posted this morning on the shocking extent to which Democrat activists will go to persecute Governor Palin's supporters. It's amazing we're just finding out about this now given that it is alleged to have occurred Friday. Imagine if something like this had been reported to have happened to a Barack Obama supporter at a Tea Party event. The lamestream media would have called for Obama to declare martial law. But if it involves alleged violence by Democrat activists against Sarah Palin supporters, they ignore it. Excellent job as always lamestream media. Let's hope we don't see more conduct like this from the Left tomorrow in Boston.

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Evangelicals for Mitt: 100% astroturf



As you all know, we don't do opposition research. If we did, it would probably look something like this:

I'm sure you'll have seen the media rumors about Romney supporters rigging the SRLC straw poll:

I spoke to a young female delegate who said she planned to vote for Romney in the poll. I asked her how she had ended up at the conference. She said "Evangelicals for Mitt" had contacted her and offered to pay for her to have a limited-access ticket -- so long as she agreed to vote for Romney in the straw poll.

Asked how "Evangelicals for Mitt" got her name, she said she didn't know. But she said that she was on the e-mail list for Romney, and speculated that the Romney team had given out their e-mail list. "Evangelicals for Mitt" co-founder David French said in an interview yesterday that his group is not coordinating with the Romney team, though he noted that his wife had worked with the Romney campaign in the past.

UPDATE: Politico's Ben Smith reports that a conference organizer told him that "Evangelicals for Mitt" and Ron Paul's "Campaign for Liberty" bought blocks of tickets to the conference, which can then be given to supporters who cast ballots in the straw poll. Romney spokesman Eric Fehrnstrom denied to Smith the Romney e-mail list had been released to "Evangelicals for Mitt."

The founders of Evangelicals for Mitt are David and Nancy French, both listed as "Romney For President National Faith And Values Steering Committee Vice-Chairs" for his failed 2008 campaign. Just your average grassroots supporters then.

Turns out Dave and Nancy have form when it comes to vote-rigging. They were caught lying about bulk-buying votes for Romney at a previous SRLC straw poll in 2006. The only difference with 2010 is that back then they did it under the name Tennesseans for Mitt which, let's be honest, doesn't have quite the same astroturf quality as the new one:

Roughly 200 Romney backers camped out at the Marriott hotel in Memphis, and some had all their expenses paid for. One of the financiers was John Kingston, general counsel of AMG Inc., of the Beverly, Mass.-based investment management firm. AMG is run by Sean Healey, the husband of Lt. Gov. Kerry Healey, Romney's most prominent ally.

"If only we could have had more time," said David French, a Tennessee lawyer and Kingston classmate at Harvard Law School who spearheaded the effort. "I don't know that we could have beaten Frist, but we could have done even better."

The pro-Romney organizing surfaced after blanket assurances there would be none by numerous members of the Romney political camp, both in and out of the Statehouse. Nancy French, who runs the pro-Romney Web site www.TNforMitt.com, initially told an Associated Press reporter all the Romney supporters paid their own way. Later, after a student attending the conference told the same reporter that French and her husband had paid travel expenses for him and four friends, French confirmed her involvement.
So that four handshakes from David French to Mitt Romney: French was at Harvard Law School with one of his main financial backers John Kingston, who's also a "Romney for President National Faith and Values Steering Committee Vice Chair" and works for the Massachusetts based Affiliated Managers Group run by Sean Healey, who just happens to be married to Romney's former Lt. Governor Kerry Healey. It's a small world after all!

Anyway: thanks to the generous funding supplied by John Kingston and company, it seems Evangelicals for Mitt has plenty of cash to throw around. They were, for example, able to co-sponsor this year's SRLC. The fact that you didn't see their name on the list of sponsors wasn't because of some technical glitch but because they requested not to be listed:

Yes, we are sponsoring, and no we haven't been on the sponsor page by our own request. Nancy and I both have day jobs, and public sponsorship would have been extremely distracting. We're sponsoring the conference to have a presence at the conference, not before the conference.
Getting their organization's name published in a list of co-sponsors would have been "extremely distracting". Riiiiight. Might it also have something to do with the fact that they didn't want to attract attention to the fact that they were offering free tickets for this year's SRLC to Romney supporters on their website?

Monday, January 04, 2010
SOUTHERN REPUBLICAN LEADERSHIP CONFERENCE
Are any of you going to the Southern Republican Leadership Conference? It’s the unofficial kick-off of the 2012 Presidential election and a great deal of fun.

This year, it's in New Orleans in April.

E-mail me if you plan on going! We are willing to pay for a limited number of conference tickets for any Romney-supporters.

I don't know about you, but I find it exciting, now that it's 2010. The election doesn't see that far away!

So, let's meet in New Orleans, everyone -- we can finally all meet in person, hear Gov. Romney speak, and help him in the straw poll. E-mail me today, while the tickets are still available.
Oh and don't worry, Dave and Nancy paid for this whole operation out of their own pockets (gulp indeed). Fortunately, a few benefactors who wish to remain anonymous also gave some cash (I'll give you a hint: they're based in Romney's home state - well, one of his home states anyway). That money might have come in handy, because an SRLC co-sponsorship, 200 tickets at $119 each, 800 copies of Romney's *ahem* bestseller and countless piggybanks don't come cheap these days.

Let's drop the pretense. It's clear that Evangelicals for Mitt is a 100% astroturf operation. I suggest that in their justification of their support for his candidacy on their frontpage they replace "he knows how to balance a check book" with the more accurate "he knows how to use a check book".

PS: Evangelicals for Romney really doesn't mind putting its wallet where its mouth is. In 2006, it gave $5000 worth of spare change to National Review to help sponsor NRO's anniversary dinner. Another main financial contributor to that dinner was Mitt Romney himself, who happened to donate the exact same amount: $5000 (a complete coincidence, according to David French). Judging by the amount of love Romney's been getting from that magazine ever since, I'd say that was the best $10,000 he/they ever spent.

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