Tag Archives: Biden

The Tattlesnake It’s McChrystal Clear: The General is Running for President Edition

By publicly making derogatory comments about his superiors in the chain of command President Obama, VP Biden, Defense Secretary Gates, White House National Security Adviser Gen. Jim Jones — US Army Gen. Stanley McChrystal has committed an act of rank insubordination, and I think he did it intentionally.

Subsequent apologies for his loose-lipped Rolling Stone interview notwithstanding, McChrystal knows Obama must, in order to maintain what little credibility he has with the military as commander-in-chief, relieve McChrystal of his command and he should break him in rank down to a Colonel or, at least, Brigadier General, but, considering Obama’s reticence in such matters, he likely won’t do the latter.

McChrystal well knows that if he wants to criticize his superiors there is a legitimate and honorable way to do so resign his commission and fire away as a civilian. Instead, the wily general has manufactured a situation wherein Obama must relieve him or lose all respect with the military establishment and a good portion of the public, as well.

Why would McChrystal set up such a situation? The easiest answer is that he’s planning on running for president as a Republican in 2012 and he can use it to a) play the aggrieved victim of a president and administration that doesn’t know what it’s doing in the Middle East; and b) insulate himself from charges of incompetence when we are forced out of Afghanistan. “I told the president the strategy he was pursuing to defeat the Taliban was na and wrong and that I had a better plan. This so angered him he found a flimsy reason to dismiss me.”

This is the line I believe McChrystal will employ following his resignation after Obama has relieved him of his command. Such criticism dovetails nicely with the GOP’s probable angle of attack on Obama in 2012 arrogant, incompetent, headstrong, vengeful, na and McChrystal will go to the head of the class of potential presidential candidates in a so far thin field for the Republicans — Romney’s no barn-burner; Palin’s a sour joke; Gingrich is stuck in the mud of 1994; Pawlenty’s a calamitous bore, and no one else is really on the radar.

Of course, the GOP establishment would welcome McChrystal with open arms as the second coming of Dwight Eisenhower, but even the various Teabaggers, quasi-Libertarians and Christian zealots who are now the party’s foundation would most likely not much contest nominating a ‘military hero’ such as the general. His campaign would also provide some lengthy (and stable) coattails for other Republicans to ride, a surcease from the almost daily factional friction of a minority party in turmoil.

The question: Will former Pentagon black-ops chief McChrystal’s new strategy to gain the White House work any better than did his plans to tame Afghanistan?

The answer: For a man as arrogant, incompetent, headstrong, vengeful, and na on public matters as Stanley McChrystal — who also, according to Rolling Stone, thinks Bud Light Lime is a great beer is a resounding no.

Read more:

“The Runaway General” — Michael Hastings, Rolling Stone, June 8-22, 2010.

Stanley A. McChrystal’s Wikipedia bio.

“New Afghanistan Commander Ran Secret ‘Executive Assassination Ring’ Under Cheney”
— Tom Englehardt, TomDispatch.com, May 21, 2009, by way of The Huffington Post.

2010 RS Janes. LTSaloon.org.

The Tattlesnake Dirty Dozen Political Quiz Edition

Think you were paying attention during the long 2008 election campaign? Grab a pen and paper and take the test below (and no cheating with the Google):

1. Hillary Clinton used it and lost. John McCain used it and lost. What was it?

2. Did John McCain actually have any casual, free-for-all talks with reporters on his ‘Straight Talk’ campaign jet as he did on his bus?

3. Obama confessed during the campaign to loving two white women in his life. Who were they?

4. According to news reports, what was McCain’s favorite breakfast?

5. Who said “there is absolutely no diva in me”?

a. Hillary Clinton
b. Sarah Palin
c. Michelle Obama
d. Cindy McCain

6. After Obama’s landslide, which famous former broadcast network anchorman continued to declare this was a ‘center-right’ country?

7. Which McCain campaign aide told the media that they wouldn’t be allowed to interview Sarah Palin unless they were properly respectful?

8. What special award did Sarah Palin win at the Miss Alaska beauty contest?

9. What did Obama promise his two daughters he’d do if he became president?

10. From the items below, pick one that wasn’t an issue for Sarah Palin in the 2008 campaign:

a. Misusing her state expense account.
b. Abusing her power in attempting to fire a state trooper.
c. Overspending her McCain campaign clothing allowance.
d. Visiting a remote Aleutian island to ‘see Russia.’
e. Her involvement with the secessionist Alaska Independence Party.
f. Insulting members of the Alaska legislature on a radio show.
g. The crazy pastor at her Wasilla church.
h. Her close friendship with corrupt Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens.
i. The ‘Bridge to Nowhere’ that she accepted federal money to build.
j. Campaigning for the Reform Party presidential candidate in the 2000 election.

11. Was Sarah Palin ever asked by the media what the initials NAFTA stood for, or to name any countries in Africa?

12. Who said in April 2008: “I’m as healthy as the economy”?

a. John McCain
b. George W. Bush
c. Henry Paulson
d. Joe Biden
e. Alan Greenspan
f. Rush Limbaugh

Answers below the fold.

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The Tattlesnake More Zippity-Doo-Dah From the Fading Right Edition

In the anguished ‘why we lost’ analyses in the days to come from the Fox News-Karl Rove-Bill Kristol neocons and their compadres in the Big Media, still discombobulated over Obama’s landslide victory in what they think is a ‘center-right’ conservative nation the ‘liberal socialist’ Obama of November 3rd even magically transforming into a ‘fiscal conservative’ 24 hours later to preserve this incredible myth — you’ll read much about how the economic meltdown in late September killed McCain’s chances after he had pulled even or ahead in the polls. Horse pucky. McCain and Palin’s sour performance in the debates, the GOP’s over-the-top negative ads, a miserably run campaign, Palin’s exposure as an ignorant nitwit, plus the general public disgust with the Bush Republican Party had as much to do with his loss as the financial crisis. Also underestimated are Obama’s superior organization, discipline, massive GOTV efforts in most of the fifty states, and that the country, already centrist-liberal except in name, has been trending more to the left for many years.

McCain got an expected uptick in the poll numbers following the Republican Convention, which is commonplace after any major party convention, but he was receding even before the banks and markets hit bottom in late September. In fact, except for McCain’s brief post-convention bounce, the individual poll margins had remained consistent since summer with Obama in the lead, as this chart shows:

CNN 6/26-6/29: Obama 50%, McCain 45%
CNN 7/27-7/29: Obama 51%, McCain 44%

CBS 7/7/-7/14: Obama 45%, McCain 39%
CBS 7/31-8/5: Obama 45%, McCain 39%

Ipsos 6/5-6/11: Obama 50%, McCain 43%
Ipsos 7/31-8/4: Obama 48%, McCain 42%

Time 6/19-6/25: Obama 47%, McCain 43%
Time 7/31-8/4: Obama 46%, McCain 41%

Pew 6/18-6/29: Obama 48%, McCain 40%
Pew 7/23-7/27: Obama 47%, McCain 42%

NBC/Wall Street Journal 6/6-6/9: Obama 47%, McCain 41%
NBC/Wall Street Journal 7/18-7/21: Obama 47%, McCain 41%

(Hat tip to Rich Gallagher of Fishkill, NY, who compiled and posted these numbers at Altercation, Aug. 8, 2008.)

Obama-Biden popular vote percentage: 52.3%

McCain-Palin popular vote percentage: 46.2%

Obama-Biden electoral vote total: 365

McCain-Palin electoral vote total: 173

(Final numbers from FiveThirtyEight.com.)

The Tattlesnake Final Election Prediction Edition

Note: The figure following the state name indicates its number of electoral votes.

First off, let’s stipulate that McCain-Palin should carry Idaho (4), Kansas (6), Nebraska (5), Oklahoma (7), South Carolina (8), South Dakota (3), Tennessee (11), Utah (5), West Virginia (5) and Wyoming (3) for a total of 49 electoral votes.

Obama-Biden should win Delaware (3), Hawaii (4), Illinois (21), Maine (4), Maryland (10), Massachusetts (12), New Jersey (15), New York (31), Rhode Island (4), Vermont (3), Washington D.C. (3) for a total of 110 electoral votes.

Here’s a breakdown of the remaining states:

Alabama (9): McCain. In the tank for McPalin, but some Congressional districts could switch to the D column.

Alaska (3): McCain, barely. Palin’s stomping ground will probably tip to McCain, but GOP Sen. Ted Stevens and Rep. Don Young will be on the outs.

Arizona (10): Obama by a fingertip. Amazingly, Obama is only one point behind on McCain’s home turf and surging. A quarter of the state’s population are people who have arrived since McCain last ran for office in 2004, and most aren’t voting Republican. I’m giving this one to Obama in the upset of the night.

Arkansas (6): McCain. It’s something in the water down there, which will soon be owned by billionaire T. Boone Pickens, if they aren’t careful.

California (55): Obama. Gov. Musclehead notwithstanding, this is a state as deep indigo as a new pair of blue jeans; the only question is if Obama wins by more than a 20-point margin. Look for some GOP congress-critters to bite the dust, including David Dreier, Mary Bono and Satan’s Apprentice Darrell Issa.

Colorado (9): Obama. The home of the USAF Academy and countless right-wing evangelical churches, also features a large contingent of retired celebrities, progressive libs, Rocky Mountain high guys, and Hispanics. The state’s been trending cerulean; this year it will go the whole route.

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The Tattlesnake Obama Infomercial Seals the Deal Edition

While the Tattler doesn’t usually like the kind of wan-music-in-the-background soft emotional porn of the ‘Oprah-ized’ infomercial, Obama’s half-hour spot Wednesday night avoided most of the worst aggravations of this TV clich窠especially the forlorn solo piano music sound track with flourishes of swelling strings redolent of tacky video matchmaking and cancer treatment center ads.

It featured battleground-state stereotypes a laid-off white male Ford Motors worker, a Latina woman trying to make ends meet, an elderly black couple hampered by chronic illness and worried about the future, et al — struggling with life in Bush’s downsized economy, but at least the people were real and their stories didn’t sink into cheesy Lifetime-channel melodrama; Obama’s interspersions in office surroundings reminiscent of Camp David were obviously intended to make the Low-and-Slow-Information-Voters of Middle America, awaiting the ballgame, feel comfortable with him as president, which was the main point of this smart $4 million investment.

Obama laid out his economic plans clearly, appeared mature and confident, and didn’t, as I recall, mention Sen. McMoribund or the Ice Princess even once. Contrast this with tone-deaf McCain’s free hour on Larry King following Obama’s spot in a country thirsting for unity and a different direction, he mostly griped about Obama and reprised the half-baked GOP themes of the past four election cycles, although he finally admitted he really didn’t believe his Democratic opponent was a socialist, negating all of the frantic rhetoric emanating from his campaign to the contrary. (Incidentally, if you know anyone who supports McCain, ask them exactly what he plans to do about the economy that is fundamentally any different from what Bush has done.)

Bill McInturff, McCain’s lead pollster, claims he has internal numbers that contradict the national polls showing Obama way ahead he proclaimed that McCain was “functionally tied” with Obama (whatever that means), but didn’t comment on why, if that’s true, McCain has been forced to spend money defending states that have safely been in the Republican column for decades, including his home state of Arizona. (Perhaps McInturff has been consulting the same secret figures Karl Rove used in 2006 when he boasted to an NPR reporter that the Republicans would hold Congress — “You may end up with a different math, but you’re entitled to your math, I’m entitled to the math.” Two weeks later, the GOP was blown out by the Dems in the off-year election. Following the drubbing, it leaked that Rove’s fatuous optimism was merely a ‘job requirement’ and not based on any inside information in other words, ‘the math’ was entirely in his head.)

McInturff’s private polls notwithstanding, and barring a monumental screw-up by Obama or Biden, or some sort of, at this point, impractical and impracticable mass voting treachery by the GOP, you can get used to saying ‘President Obama’ after next Tuesday.

Wednesday night’s well-produced infomercial sealed the deal.

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