Archive for November 18th, 2008

November 18, 2008

‘My friends . . .’

That other McCain — the one who lost the election — owes Republicans a concession speech, says Pete Parisi:

As is customary on election night, Republican presidential nominee John McCain called his rival, Barack Obama, to concede defeat and graciously wish the Illinois Democrat well as he prepares to move into the White House in January. The Arizona lawmaker then delivered that same message to disappointed supporters gathered in Phoenix and on national television.
Now, two weeks later, it’s time for Mr. McCain to make a second concession speech — this one to his fellow Senate Republicans, when they gather Tuesday [Nov. 18] to organize their conference for the 111th Congress — conceding that he ran the most incompetent campaign in memory, apologizing for it and urging that the party’s 2012 nominee not to make the same mistakes if the GOP is to have any hope of wresting back the White House four years from now.

(Hat tip: Protein Wisdom.) Pete’s actually drafted a text for Crazy Cousin John, so read the whole thing.

November 18, 2008

Surprising attention

Think Progress noticed yesterday that Sarah Palin has been confirmed as a speaker for CPAC ’09, Feb. 28-29, resulting in attention from Salon.com, Tammy Bruce (thanks, Tammy) and from the CPAC folks themselves, who took notice of my unofficial DIY sidebar ad. I’ve been asked to replace it with an official CPAC ad, and will do so, just as soon as I get back to my home computer.

In the meantime, REGISTER NOW for CPAC ’09.
November 18, 2008

This is your brain on Hope

Via Hot Air, which links How Obama Got Elected with this info on Obama voters:

  • 57.4 could NOT correctly say which party controls congress (50/50 shot just by guessing)
  • 81.8 could NOT correctly say Joe Biden quit a previous campaign because of plagiarism (25% chance by guessing)
  • 82.6 could NOT correctly say that Obama won his first election by getting opponents kicked off the ballot (25% chance by guessing)
  • 88.4% could NOT correctly say that Obama said his policies would likely bankrupt the coal industry and make energy rates skyrocket (25% chance by guessing)
  • 56.1 % could NOT correctly say Obama started his political career at the home of two former members of the Weather Underground (25% chance by guessing).

I pointed out weeks ago that 41% of CNN viewers didn’t know Democrats controlled Congress. This goes back to my whole point about “low-information” voters. Don’t overthink it!

(Cross-posted at AmSpecBlog.)

November 18, 2008

Dude mystified about ‘racist’ label

You might be tempted to think this is an Onion parody. Except it’s Paulding County, Ga.:

Pat Lanzo insists he’s not a racist.
“I believe people are equal,” he says, “As long as they earn their keep as well as me.”
Nevertheless, the proprietor of The Peach bar and restaurant in Paulding County says that people often mistakenly assume he’s a racist.
The main reason, he says, are the signs he posts outside his restaurant. “Damn Yankees May Have Taken Our N—-rs But Not Our Guns,” said one. “Obama Gives Us Hope Dreams and Maybe A New Holiday — Thats My N—-r” read another.
“The minute someone says the N-word, you’re labeled racist,” he explains.

I grew up in neighboring Douglas County and used to cover sports in Paulding County, and it’s not as bad as you might think from this article. But among some of the good ol’ boys there is a certain . . . obstreperous disdain for the niceties of political correctness, shall we say? A kind of rowdy macho thing about going the extra mile to indicate that one is not intimidated. And Lanzo is correct in saying that folks like that are not necessarily more “racist” than people who sulk in silent fear. Lanzo says:

“If I was gonna hate anybody, I’d hate my ex-wife.”

Dave Niewert and the SPLC don’t understand, of course, but rednecks are the one minority culture whose folkways aren’t tolerated under multiculturalism.

UPDATE: Just some demographic background for people who aren’t familiar with Georgia. Paulding County is a fast-growing exurb of Atlanta, with a population of more than 120,000 that’s increased nearly 50% since 2000. Median household income is more than $58,000.

When I was growing up in Douglas County, Paulding County was overwhelmingly rural. My hometown of Lithia Springs was sophisticated and cosmopolitan compared to Dallas or Hiram. But as neighboring Cobb County became urbanized, the Cobb developers moved westward.

The big thing was when Thorton Road (Ga. 6) was widened and connected to U.S. 278 via Powder Springs and Hiram, so that you now have a virtual freeway all the way from the Atlanta Airport (Camp Creek Parkway) to Rockmart (in Polk County). The area around the intersection of U.S. 278 and Ga. 92 in Hiram is now massively developed. A lot of the residents of Paulding County commute to jobs in Cobb or Douglas counties, especially in the industrial developments around the intersection of I-20 and Thornton Road.

UPDATE II: Lanzo’s Peach Bar is being spun as part of a “racist backlash” against Obama, which is silly: Paulding County never forward-lashed, so how can they backlash? Of course, the prosperous blue-collar exurbanites of Paulding County voted 69% Republican, but that doesn’t make them evil, does it?

November 18, 2008

Democrats elect druggie judge

A throw-the-bums out attitude — and Obama Mania in Houston — elects a tattooed ex-cokehead as a district court judge:

Fine, a Democrat, campaigned on his life experiences, saying they would make him a better judge than his rival, Republican incumbent Devon Anderson.
“She did a good job, but I’m more qualified in the hopelessness and futility of addiction,” Fine said.

Hopelessness and futility as qualifications? Dude, why didn’t I think of that?

November 18, 2008

Dobson empire on hard times?

An interesting development:

Focus on the Family announced Monday that it will cut 202 staff positions at its Colorado Springs headquarters, beginning at month’s end.
Of these jobs, 149 are filled and 53 positions are vacant, officials said. About 20 percent of the positions are in management.
Most of the jobs end Nov. 28; however, some will be phased out December through February.
These losses and 46 layoffs announced by the ministry in October will bring its staff size to about 950, down from about 1,200 last year, said Focus chief operating officer Glenn Williams.

Does this indicate weakening of social conservatism? Is it a result of the decliining economy? Or — and I think this the most likely explanation — is it the result of an outdated business model?

Focus on the Family made a lot of its money by selling Christian-oriented books, CDs and DVDs through its monthly magazine, but those sales have declined, as the ministry admitted in announcing a first round of layoffs in September:

Over the past few years, Focus has seen a significant decline in its sales of books, CDs and DVDs, which the organization blames on competition from online retailers and large retailers like Wal-Mart. To help save money, Focus partnered with Christian Book Distributors of Peabody, Mass., to take over its product distribution early next year. Each shipment of materials costs Focus about $8, the organization’s president and CEO, Jim Daly, said Tuesday. Through CBD, the cost will go down by more than 50 percent.

Whereas FOTF was a dominant player in a niche market, now they’re facing competition in their niche. So somebody has to build a better mousetrap.

UPDATE: More information:

Donations are down, and Focus relies almost entirely on the charity of others.
That problem is reverberating throughout the nonprofit sector, said Colorado Springs Economic Development Corp. president Mike Kazmierski.
“It’s probably going to get worse,” he said. “When people have to cut back, the only place they have to go is their discretionary income.”
Glenn Williams, Focus’ chief operating officer, said that more than 95 percent of the organization’s income comes from donations, with book sales accounting for the remainder. Donations to Focus set a record high in fiscal 2008, he said. But donations began to decline in October, which starts Focus’ new fiscal year, and after polling major donors, Focus expects this holiday season – normally the most lucrative time of the year for nonprofits – to be even more painful to the bottom line.
“Looking at October trends and talking to donors who are not in a position where they can give, we thought we’d be facing a more severe decision in January or February if we waited,” Williams said.
The cuts are taking place throughout the organization. The most visible change will be the elimination of the print editions of four of its eight magazines.
The content of the magazines – Plugged In, Breakaway, Brio and Brio & Beyond – will remain online.
Plugged In, for example, has seen its print subscriber base dip to 30,000 while its Web site attracts 1 million unique visitors a month, Williams said.

You know, I’m not all that that impressed by 1 million uniques. Ace of Spade had 3.4 million visitors in October. Maybe they should hire Ace to run their Web division — family values and Valu-Rite vodka!

Uh, seriously, though, a lot of old brick-and-mortar operations (including newspapers) are run by older guys who really don’t know how to evaluate online activity from a business perspective. The Republican Party isn’t the only old-school organization that can’t get a clue online.

UPDATE II: The gay left is having a schadenfreude fest over this, since FOTF helped push passage of Proposition 8 in California. They apparently think only christofascist godbags are going to be hurt by this recession depression apocalyptic gotterdammerung.

November 18, 2008

Your pathetic life

Dude, lose the goatee!

Attractive Girls Union Refuses To Enter Into Talks With Mike Greenman