Palin on Dr. Tiller’s Murder

I have gained a tiny, ever so small, shred of respect for Sarah Palin.

Dr. George Tiller was one of the few doctors who performed late term abortions, something I disagree with. Because of this anti-abortionists had targeted Dr. Tiller in the past. Anti-abortionists bombed Dr. Tiller’s clinic. One shot Dr. Tiller in both arms in 1993. Bill O’Reilly addressed Dr. Tiller’s clinic recently on his program due to pending criminal investigation of the clinic. Some have claimed Lil’ Bill responsible for Dr. Tiller’s murder by bringing attention to the clinic.

A gunman shot Dr. Tiller at his church in Wichita Kansas this past Sunday. Sarah Palin released a statement the same day concerning Dr. Tiller’s murder.

from The Atlantic:

“I feel sorrow for the Tiller family. I respect the sanctity of life and the tragedy that took place today in Kansas clearly violates respect for life. This murder also damages the positive message of life, for the unborn, and for those living. Ask yourself, ‘What will those who have not yet decided personally where they stand on this issue take away from today’s event in Kansas?’

Regardless of my strong objection to Dr. Tiller’s abortion practices, violence is never an answer in advancing the pro-life message.”

It is important for the pro-life movement to distance itself from radicals. That can do nothing but hurt their cause. Also, coming from Palin (yes I know someone probably wrote this for her) that message carries a lot of weight. Think of the segment of the population that follow her. Some of them are the ones who need tempering. Palin’s message is a call to those radicals to cool it.

If Palin is sincere then I’ve gained a little respect for the woman. Even if she isn’t, it is still an important message.

And of course it’s one Hell of a PR bump.

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Fur Flies on The View – Ziegler and the media mistreatment of Sarah Palin

The dragons were spitting fire today on The View. The ladies interviewed John Ziegler maker of the new documentary “Media Malpractice”. Ziegler’s documentary takes a look at media bias during the 2008 Presidential election. Ziegler’s thesis is that the media’s love for Obama won him the election and their dislike and fear of Sarah Palin destroyed John McCain.

Tempers were flaring. I had an extremely hard time garnering any information from the segment. The interview started with some decorum, but quickly degenerated into a tag-team wrestling match, Joy and Barbara on one side, Elizabeth and Ziegler on the other. I’ve heard arguments between drunken bums that were easier to follow. Things got so fiery that at one point I thought Barbara was going to slap John Ziegler right in the mouth. Whoopi tried to maintain some sense of order and add some actual facts to the jumble of half-truths and conjecture, but when the ladies go off there’s no stopping the chain reaction.

There was one fact Ziegler used in his argument that I take issue with; the only one I could discern from the mess. In a poll done by Zogby 6.2% of poll takers could not recall that Palin had a pregnant daughter during the campaign. Ziegler contrasted this with the results from a question of Obama’s association with Weather Underground member Bill Ayers. “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). Those that could associate Bill Ayers’ name/story with Obama voted 52-48 for McCain (We added Ayers name to the “Zogby” question and it significantly increased the rate of correct response, indicating a very superficial grasp of the overall story).”

This really proves nothing and I’ll tell you why. First, how can you say that adding Bill Ayers’s name to a question and getting more of a response means people did not know more about the story then they did about Palin’s. Just because someone knows Sarah Palin’s daughter is pregnant doesn’t mean that have more than a “superficial grasp” of the story. You can discount that part of the story.

Second, the relevance of Ayers to almost half of those who voted is in question. Ayers was most active in the Weathermen from the late 60s until the early 70s. 47% of all who voted were under 44. Even the oldest of those voters were only 7 or 8 at the end of Ayers involvement. Even when Ayers went to trial in 1980 few of the voters in the 47% would have been able to connect Ayers to his terrorism ten years ago. The pregnancy Bristol Palin was happening right during the election. It had an imedeacy to it that people seem to love these days. The Ayers story was old and moldy by media standards.

The media did treat Sarah Palin a bit harshly during the campaign. Some of the problems were her own. Politics is a rough game. Dirty laundry, relevant to an election or not, has a way of getting aired. Just ask Bill Clinton or John Edwards. Even Howard Dean and his infamous YEEEEAAAAA were so shoved in everyone’s faces he lost the Democratic nomination. Stuff like what happened to Palin happens every election season. Is it right? No. Will it continue to influence elections? Yes. It’s an unfortunate fact that’s not likely to change soon. This is the price of 24-hour news.

Watch the clips all the way through if you dare. Give me your take.

Fur Flies on The View – Ziegler and the media mistreatment of Sarah Palin

The dragons were spitting fire today on The View. The ladies interviewed John Ziegler maker of the new documentary “Media Malpractice”. Ziegler’s documentary takes a look at media bias during the 2008 Presidential election. Ziegler’s thesis is that the media’s love for Obama won him the election and their dislike and fear of Sarah Palin destroyed John McCain.

Tempers were flaring. I had an extremely hard time garnering any information from the segment. The interview started with some decorum, but quickly degenerated into a tag-team wrestling match, Joy and Barbara on one side, Elizabeth and Ziegler on the other. I’ve heard arguments between drunken bums that were easier to follow. Things got so fiery that at one point I thought Barbara was going to slap John Ziegler right in the mouth. Whoopi tried to maintain some sense of order and add some actual facts to the jumble of half-truths and conjecture, but when the ladies go off there’s no stopping the chain reaction.

There was one fact Ziegler used in his argument that I take issue with; the only one I could discern from the mess. In a poll done by Zogby 6.2% of poll takers could not recall that Palin had a pregnant daughter during the campaign. Ziegler contrasted this with the results from a question of Obama’s association with Weather Underground member Bill Ayers. “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). Those that could associate Bill Ayers’ name/story with Obama voted 52-48 for McCain (We added Ayers name to the “Zogby” question and it significantly increased the rate of correct response, indicating a very superficial grasp of the overall story).”

This really proves nothing and I’ll tell you why. First, how can you say that adding Bill Ayers’s name to a question and getting more of a response means people did not know more about the story then they did about Palin’s. Just because someone knows Sarah Palin’s daughter is pregnant doesn’t mean that have more than a “superficial grasp” of the story. You can discount that part of the story.

Second, the relevance of Ayers to almost half of those who voted is in question. Ayers was most active in the Weathermen from the late 60s until the early 70s. 47% of all who voted were under 44. Even the oldest of those voters were only 7 or 8 at the end of Ayers involvement. Even when Ayers went to trial in 1980 few of the voters in the 47% would have been able to connect Ayers to his terrorism ten years ago. The pregnancy Bristol Palin was happening right during the election. It had an imedeacy to it that people seem to love these days. The Ayers story was old and moldy by media standards.

The media did treat Sarah Palin a bit harshly during the campaign. Some of the problems were her own. Politics is a rough game. Dirty laundry, relevant to an election or not, has a way of getting aired. Just ask Bill Clinton or John Edwards. Even Howard Dean and his infamous YEEEEAAAAA were so shoved in everyone’s faces he lost the Democratic nomination. Stuff like what happened to Palin happens every election season. Is it right? No. Will it continue to influence elections? Yes. It’s an unfortunate fact that’s not likely to change soon. This is the price of 24-hour news.

Watch the clips all the way through if you dare. Give me your take.

Nightly News Roundup – Sarah Palin, Iraqi Elections, Octuplets, Unemployment, Hockey, Bald Eagles

NBC: Wailin’ about Palin

CBS: Good news from Iraq for a change

ABC: Granma talkin’ trash

WCSH6: Open your hand and get in line

WGME13: Mainiacs no more

WMTW8: This bird’s doin’ fine

Nightly News Roundup – Sarah Palin, Iraqi Elections, Octuplets, Unemployment, Hockey, Bald Eagles

NBC: Wailin’ about Palin

CBS: Good news from Iraq for a change

ABC: Granma talkin’ trash

WCSH6: Open your hand and get in line

WGME13: Mainiacs no more

WMTW8: This bird’s doin’ fine

Sunday Editorial on Editorials – Even Republicans Praise Obama’s Inauguration Speech

Normally I like to review some local editorials from the Sunday paper today. The websites for the dailies here in Maine seem to all be down though. I am too lazy to go out and buy some copies; frankly the Portland Press Herald is not worth paying money for. I’ve had to look beyond the borders of the Pine Tree State for my opinions this Sunday.

The pickings were slim. I never realized how interesting the opinion sections of Maine newspapers are. It helps that we have a lot of strange people who aren’t afraid to share their views. We’re an odd breed up here. There’s no guessing if someone likes you or not. I’ll stop before I get too far off topic, something else Mainers are prone to do.

Just across the big green bridge from Kittery, Maine is Portsmouth. In the local Portsmouth paper, the aptly named Portsmouth Herald, I came across an interesting piece by

Kerr goes on to dissect Obama’s inauguration speech. The speech thoroughly moved and uplifted Kerr. The aspects of the speech that impressed Kerr were similar to those that got my attention. Overcoming the darkness in our past, our sense of brotherhood, and the call for unity.

Change did not win the election. One could argue that McCain presented changes of his own. The kind of change each candidate offered determined who won. The unity and togetherness that Obama proposed brought voters to his camp. McCain may have been willing to reach across party lines in the past, but that is not the front he presented during the election. The selection of Sarah Palin as a running mate proved that. McCain chose to pander to the dwindling Republican base. Obama reached out to moderates of both sides of the fence. “That one” won.

Both Obama and McCain pledge to secure and spread democracy throughout the world. McCain wished to do this by force. Obama will do this by force when necessary, but more importantly by providing an example and taking the moral high ground, as outlined by his inauguration speech. Obama dispelled the feelings of foreign policy naivete

There may be some in the extreme right that are still wondering how President Obama won. As Kerr points out, Obama silenced them with one sentence from his inauguration speech, saying, “What the cynics fail to understand is that the ground has shifted beneath them — that the stale political arguments that have consumed us for so long no longer apply.”

It’s No Rumor. Kennedy Withdraws.

The official word from Caroline Kennedy’s public relations office: “I informed Governor Paterson today that for personal reasons I am withdrawing my name from consideration for the United States Senate,” Kennedy said in a statement released by her public relations firm.

I have to say that I’m a bit revealed. The Kennedy family have done a great number of things for this country (or to this country some of my conservative friends would say). While many in the Kennedy family have found success in politics other serve better elsewhere. Caroline Kennedy is one of those people. As director of the Office of Strategic Partnerships for the New York City Department of Education Caroline raised $65 million for the schools in two years. Caroline also is a member of the boards of directors of the Commission on Presidential Debates and the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund.

Clearly Kennedy’s time is better spent in philanthropic work. She is passionate about it and has the name and know-how to fuel it. I wondered if the US Senate was the best place for on the job training. Other blogs such as The Moderate Voice and Donklephant asked if Caroline Kennedy was truly ready for the job.

Even though Caroline is from one of the most powerful and well known political families in US history that does not make her a good politician by extension. My father is an electrician. Should someone hire me as an electrician because of that? Not if they don’t want properties burning down left and right from faulty wiring. Those of us came out saying Sarah Palin did not have enough political experience to be Vice-President would sound awfully hypocritical advocating someone for office who had no experience what-so-ever. I’m glad there were some of us in the center-left who could stand up for reason.

Also, it’s a bit early still (8 AM EST), but I scoured conservative news outlets and pundits sites for their take on the story. Ingram, Limbaugh, Hannity, and O’Reilly had no mentions of the story yet. The LA Times, Fox News, and the NY Post did get their digs in, however briefly. The LA Times and the NY Post both claimed that Governor Patterson was unimpressed with Kennedy’s interviews, which were less than stellar to be kind, and wasn’t going to choose her anyway. Kennedy was simply quitting the job before Patterson could fire her so to speak. The LA Times also surmised that Kennedy suddenly realized that the job was too big for her to handle. That I find a bit hard to grasp. Being surrounded by politicians her whole life, while not giving her knowledge of how to do the job, would at least make her privy to how much work was involved. The Fox News piece, which I must admit was pretty decent except for one small sentence, sitting Kennedy’s extensive use of “um” and “you know” in her “lackluster” campaign.

I think this is a win win situation. Kennedy will continue doing what she does best and we will get a qualified senator from NY.