McCain Thinks Bush Lowered Oil Prices

From AP:

Republican John McCain on Wednesday credited the recent $10-a-barrel drop in the price of oil to President Bush's lifting of a presidential ban on offshore drilling, an action he has been advocating in his presidential campaign.

The cost of oil and gasoline is "on everybody's mind in this room," McCain told a town-hall meeting.

He criticized Democratic rival Barack Obama for opposing drilling on the Outer Continental Shelf.

Bush recently lifted the executive order banning offshore drilling that his father put in place in 1990. He also asked Congress to lift its own moratorium on oil exploration on the outer continental shelf which includes coastal waters as close as three miles from shore.

"The price of oil dropped $10 a barrel," said McCain, who argued that the psychology of lifting the ban has affected world markets.


Y'know, I'm starting to think McCain believes this crap. Smooth move, too, because if oil prices rise before the election, which is entirely possible, if not probable, then his whole argument about drilling is pretty much moot.

But then again, maybe this is something else. Bush gives his speech and lifts the ban on offshore drilling at the same time as Bernanke delivers a message that the economy is heading down the turlet. The oil price drops because of Bernanke's sobering statements and other fairly positive news, all of which cause oil buyers to sell some of their positions and lock in profits.  Not even FOX Business News gave Bush credit, even though it mentioned him lifting the ban. But now McCain gives credit to Bush for circumstance, and perhaps that was the idea all along.

McCain either thinks we're all stupid or he's pretty stupid about how things work, and I'd be willing to bet it's a bit of both. Can't wait till Obama gets home and can give these two the verbal hammering they need.

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Jindal?? Please, please, please...

John McCain is set to meet with Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal Wednesday, a move that is certain to increase speculation the Arizona senator is seriously considering the 37-year-old Republican for his running mate.

News of the meeting, first reported by the Washington Post, comes amid reports the McCain campaign has mulled the possibility of naming the vice presidential candidate later this week in an effort to steal the media spotlight from Barack Obama's trip overseas. Sources close to the Republican presidential candidate have indicated that scenario is one of several possibilities that have been recently discussed.

Please let this be true. I honestly thought the McCain camp wasn't this stupid, but maybe they are. Bobby Jindal is absolutely insane. He swears he performed an exorcism in college (and stands by that). He is a rabid opponent of evolution and abortion. He's considered in a lot of ways to be a bit of an empty suit, and I think there have been grumblings about his leadership, too, having jumped around in office so often.

If McCain picks Jindal, Obama picks Clinton. BOOM. Game over. The independents who aren't fond of her REALLY won't like Bobby Jindal, and they'll be pissed at McCain for picking someone so crazy. And everyone else will get to watch her beat the everloving crap out of him in the debates.

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My Final Thoughts of What PUMAs Represent

Sorry for the post with a lack of depth. Just to put SOME form of content in here... I know it's completely superficial, but how nice is it to actually have a Democratic candidate that can look cool when visiting a military base?

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Circumstantial Evidence Pointing to Hillary as VP?

One by one, many of Obama's prospective VPs have opted out. I am still hoping for John Edwards, but I'm thinking it might be Hillary. Here is why:

Democrat Barack Obama and his former rival, Hillary Rodham Clinton, are heading to New York with his vice presidential searcher Caroline Kennedy.

Clinton, mentioned as a possible running mate, and Obama were to appear together Wednesday night at a fundraiser.

Earlier Wednesday, Clinton deflected a reporter's inquiry about whether she has turned over documents for her former rival's campaign to review as part of the vice presidential search.

Obama made an unannounced stop at a downtown building that houses the law firm of another member of his vice presidential search team, Eric Holder, but he wouldn't say why afterward.

It's more than just that, though. Hillary has made herself far more feasible as a running mate as of late.

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Offense, Defense and Capitulation

A reader at TPM just made possibly the best comment I've read all week:

I agree with the points of your "Please, please, reporters with brains" entry, but I think you might need to be included in the group of reporters/bloggers/etc. that is following the McCain script. As usual, there will basically be two responses to this story - both favorable to McCain. The first will be the hoards of dutiful reporters parroting whatever interpretation McCain feeds them. The second will be the righteously indignant Obama defenders with all their nuanced facts decrying his innocence. So, what we get is a strong and offensive position versus a correct, but overly cerebral and defensive argument. Strategy versus tactics? Come on - the wingnuts must laugh their asses off every time they see this script play out.

Why cede the offensive position? The offensive rebuttal is to first completely ignore the way McCain framed the position and then just flip it around - "why does McCain so desperately want to convince the public that his Iraq policy is just like Obama's?" Because the public long ago figured out that he was stuck carrying Bush's turd and McCain damn well knows his campaign is swirling the drain along with it. What's more to be said than "John McCain would LOVE to convince the public that he and Obama don't differ in their Iraq policy - why is that? Because McCain and Bush got us into this Iraq nightmare and the public knows that Obama will get us out." Repeat after me - McCain and Bush got us into this Iraq nightmare and Obama will get us out. Repeat. Repeat.

Completely accurate. What we tend to think of as playing defense is all too often simply conceding the touchdown and trying to block the extra point. What we think of as playing offense is simply trying to hold them at the 20 yard line. What we are NOT doing often enough is trying to score.

This means that simply counterattacking is not enough. We need MORE stuff like the Wesley Clark remarks, not less. Perhaps not on quite as personal a level, but we successfully defined the narrative for the campaign the first half of the week, and the GOP didn't get it back until McCain announced a campaign shakeup that actually had been going on for a few weeks. If we continue to shove McCain back, it won't be pretty, but we will completely knock the legs out from under the Republicans, who appear ready once again to campaign entirely on the premise of Republicans being much stronger than the Democrats.

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The Only Thing I'll Miss About George W. Bush

David Letterman's "Great Moments In Presidential Speeches" segments:

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McCain's Extended Flirtation

Ben Smith from Politico posted a fun little look behind the scenes of John McCain's Clinton backers conference call yesterday, and a couple of things made my eyebrows lift a bit.

After his public conference call with Clinton supporters (covered extensively by Jonathan Martin) Saturday, John McCain met privately with some 75 of those supporters in his Virginia headquarters, two people who were there said.

. . . .

"He stayed for a good almost half hour afterwards shaking hands, listening to our concerns, talking to us," said PUMA founder Will Bower, who said he thought many of the people there would vote for McCain.

. . . .

Bower said he'd liked McCain's answer on judges, in which he "pointed out that he supported Bill Clinton with both Ginsberg and Breyer."

Another person who was present, but asked not to be named to avoid conflict with fellow Democrats, said he'd pressed a McCain staffer on McCain's position on same-sex marriage.

The staffer "said it was the same as [John] Kerry's position," he said.

And now we see the problem that will emerge from chasing Democrats. It's going to further exacerbate the divide between the two McCains and his needed base. I'm sure conservatives are quite surprised to hear about his professed support for two of the most liberal members of the Supreme Court. I'm also sure they would be surprised to hear that McCain supports civil unions?

We're going to see more of this, I predict. Perhaps Republicans are more than willing to accept a Republican president that seems to have no problem pledging to vote like a moderate Democrat, but I doubt it. It still means that they won't get anything done. McCain will have to pick a side at some point and push the other side away.

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The Quote That Defines John McCain (spread it around)

This is an oldie but still needs to be brought back up, since it's been awhile since I've seen it thrown around. Back in 2007, there was something I saw that turned me inexorably away from John McCain. I grew to like him again in time, but I read something that made me realize exactly what his campaign had become and who I would be voting for.

You see, I liked John McCain at one time. We all did, admit it. He was unafraid to challenge the Republicans at a time when even many Democrats weren't up to the task. He fought against corruption, tax breaks that eventually crippled the US economy (by being invested largely in foreign businesses), and for the environment. I saw him in much the same way a lot of America still sees him.

Then that started to change. Slowly at first. Hugging the man he rightly called an agent for intolerance. Embracing the man whose dirty campaigning forever soiled both him and US politics. And I noticed that McCain the moderate was suddenly becoming anything but. And I wondered why. I assumed he was pandering, and it upset me, but I still thought he had some sense. And then one day, I saw this:

Q: "What about grants for sex education in the United States? Should they include instructions about using contraceptives? Or should it be Bush's policy, which is just abstinence?"

Mr. McCain: (Long pause) "Ahhh. I think I support the president's policy."

Q: "So no contraception, no counseling on contraception. Just abstinence. Do you think contraceptives help stop the spread of HIV?"

Mr. McCain: (Long pause) "You've stumped me."

Q: "I mean, I think you'd probably agree it probably does help stop it?"

Mr. McCain: (Laughs) "Are we on the Straight Talk express? I'm not informed enough on it. Let me find out. You know, I'm sure I've taken a position on it on the past. I have to find out what my position was. Brian, would you find out what my position is on contraception - I'm sure I'm opposed to government spending on it, I'm sure I support the president's policies on it."

Q: "But you would agree that condoms do stop the spread of sexually transmitted diseases. Would you say: `No, we're not going to distribute them,' knowing that?"

Mr. McCain: (Twelve-second pause) "Get me Coburn's thing, ask Weaver to get me Coburn's paper that he just gave me in the last couple of days. I've never gotten into these issues before."

I know it doesn't need to be said that McCain is a third term of Bush, but lost in the shuffle is that he has made himself into a downright phony. Make sure everyone who ever thinks of supporting McCain sees this quote. It will make them think twice about who the real phony is in this campaign.

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HillBuzz effectively discredits their own Michelle Obama story (UPDATED!)

The emphasis is mine:

When a rumor about a tape of Michelle Obama ranting and raving at Trinity first hit the blogs, we wondered if there was any truth to it. So, we just used Google to try as best we could to piece together her public schedule for the last few years, cross referencing that with the other clues that started coming out about what Michelle supposedly said, and who was with her when she said it. We just looked for times she was in Chicago before the national media would have been paying any attention to her (so, basically, everything prior to Barack Obama's speech at the DNC Convention in 2004: logic dictates she would be less inclined to rant and rave in public after she and her husband had a national profile). The break came when it was noted on the blogs that Michelle made her remarks with Mrs. Farrakhan at a panel discussion at Trinity. Having that, another Google search turned up the Jet magazine article, a trip to the Library to check out the microfiche of that issue got the photo of Michelle and the other panelists (with all their names), a Google search of those names all together got the schedule of events for the 2004 Rainbow/PUSH Coalition Conference, and that schedule ultimately led to the rest.

We have no idea if we are right, because we've never seen the tape. But, we don't understand why a journalist couldn't get the tape of Michelle's panel discussion to check if she does, in fact, rant and rave on this panel the way it's been described.

It doesn't seem to need a Woodward or Bernstein: just someone who knows how to use Google and who can sit down with a pad of paper and figure out when Michelle Obama would have had an opportunity to do something like this. Once that is known, journalists just need to get the tapes from her appearance at the 2004 conference to see what she said and how she said it.

Do we still have any journalists in this country?

That last bit is a very good question. Please note that at no point did they make any attempt to prove that the remarks actually occurred, they just found a point at which Michelle Obama and Louis Farrakhan were at the same event (which, considering it also had Bill Cosby and Clinton, isn't that remarkable). If the tape exists, then now we know where to get it, either to debunk or prove these charges. But then again, even if someone does, it doesn't matter, because then it just becomes somewhere else that these comments were made. A different time, different place, different attendee, different google search.

UPDATE: I just did a search of my own... on LexisNexis. Found that JET article. Michelle Obama is not named ONCE in the article. That picture they have is the only evidence to be found. And there's no other mention in any other publication I can find. So perhaps there is video of this meeting, perhaps there is some sort of evidence that something was said. Somehow I don't think so. The fact that No Quarter jumped immediately onto this bit of gossip speaks volumes.

UPDATE 2: Thanks to soyousay for providing a link to the program that debunks this thing even further. Ms. Farrakhan was not featured at that conference. Here is the list from the program:

Womans Luncheon

M.C.’s: Cheryl Burton and Karen Jordan, ABC 7

Keynote Speaker: Reverend Jesse L. Jackson, Sr.

Special Guests:
Shoshana Johnson, Retired United States Military
Michelle Obama, University of Chicago
Not only was the keynote speaker Jesse Jackson, Michelle Obama is listed as a special guest. Not even as the actual host. Kinda hard to believe she would be allowed to ramble on for half an hour, huh?

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Fun With Video (without actual video footage)

Well, the moment of truth arrived today. Larry Johnson's bombshell that would blow the race WIDE OPEN. He said awhile back ago that a video of Michelle Obama saying "whitey" was in the clammy, fungus-covered fingers of the GOP. Then a couple of days ago, he said that he had another bombshell that would BLOW THE RACE WIDE OPEN: FILE NOT FOUND

OK, I guess he wasn't actually in possession of the tape, but he had some details that would BLOW THE RACE WIDE OPEN and he would reveal them today at 9AM.

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