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McCain Gets the Long Knives Out for Obama

October 7, 2008

Nice to see he’s got it in him:

Maybe not nice. But necessary- and I think done fairly.

Still, I don’t think the guilt by association tactic is going to work too well. People have swift-boat fatigue. The fact is though that Obama has a lot of sketchy relationships that have not been properly investigated by the press.

23 Comments leave one →
  1. goodtimepolitics permalink
    October 7, 2008 3:25 am

    Yes Obama has more friends in low places than we can remember! I for one American could not vote for him knowing that he was best friends with William Ayers the known terrorist.

  2. Duke of Ray permalink
    October 7, 2008 10:56 am

    About. Freakin’. Time.

  3. Toayminator permalink
    October 7, 2008 1:19 pm

    Let’s be clear on two points.

    1. We’re not talking about just Bill Ayers.
    2. These are not “associations”. They are ALLIANCES.

    Here’s just a partial list of O’s radical ties:

    – Saul Alinsky – Radical Leftist / Communist(as outed by his son Lee David Alinsky in the Boston Globe)

    If you know ANYTHING about Saul Alinsky, it’s that he advocated “change” as a codeword for a far left agenda which included radical redistribution of wealth. He also advocated that radical leftists achieve their agenda by disguising who they really are and what they’re real agenda is.

    This is why I am so convinced that you- and other absolutely well-meaning people- are being deceived about Obama really is.

    – John L. McKnight – student of Saul Alinsky

    – William Ayers – Weathermen terrorist leader

    – Mike Klonsky

    – Tony Rezko

    – Jeremiah Wright

    – Dr. Khalid al-Mansour

    – Edward Said

    – Frank Marshall Davis –

    – Frantz Fanon

    – Jerry Kellman

    – Sam Graham-Felsen – one of the official bloggers for Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign, was a self-proclaimed student of Karl Marx.

    These are not “associations”. They are ALLIANCES.
    Very dangerous, radical, anti-American ALLIANCES.

  4. David permalink
    October 7, 2008 1:48 pm

    Now, because of the desperation of losing in the polls, the swift boating really begins. I don’t think anyone should be going there, although it is effective on the poor ignorant masses. This kind of character assasination, because of a hatred of an ideal and a group of people (and I mean hatred of liberals/progressives, not blacks), is un-American and anti-democratic. You instill fear and hatred, as you cannot argue to the issues (because of a track record of failure). The insinuations of rumor, and guilt by association, is the last act of desperation to cling onto power. The (morally and ethically corrupt) religious right will no longer have a phone into the oval office (oh dear). It happened to Kerry, Clinton, Max Cleland, and a host of other Dems who the right wing hated and tried to crush.

    Joseph Goebbell’s said it best…..

    “If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.”

    Having said that, let’s talk about the Palins’ connection with the Alaska Independence party (a secessionist group) and Joe Vogler the founder. A group which Todd Palin was a member of for 7 years, and which Sarah has recently said to “Keep up the good work.” There are rumors floating that Vogler, when he was addressing the UN to denounce US tyranny, that he got the Iranian government to sponsor his anti-American tirade. Doesn’t that sound like being friends with a terrorist group?

    Quoting an article in

    “Before his strange murder in 1993, party founder Vogler preached armed insurrection against the United States of America. Vogler, who always carried a Magnum with him, was fond of saying, “When the [federal] bureaucrats come after me, I suggest they wear red coats. They make better targets. In the federal government are the biggest liars in the United States, and I hate them with a passion. They think they own [Alaska]. There comes a time when people will choose to die with honor rather than live with dishonor. That time may be coming here. Our goal is ultimate independence by peaceful means under a minimal government fully responsive to the people. I hope we don’t have to take human life, but if they go on tramping on our property rights, look out, we’re ready to die.”

    End of quote # # #

    What happens when the next Democrat contender comes along? And then the next? Are they all going to be evil? Do you see such things in the prison of biblical context, or is it just that you cannot handle democracy? What would you say about Hilary? Or Edwards, or Kucinich? It wouldn’t matter how good the next Democrat is. You believe that they belong to an evil ideology!

    We’ve seen what a government looks like when all branches of it belong to one ideology. It’s dangerous, and we need to clean out the corruption that the concentrated power has brought on. We never want to see a permanent Republican or Democrat majority, for that becomes a dictatorship. Hence a system of checks and balances, and why we need oversight (non-existent during the Republican majority). Believe me, I would be saying this if it had been the Dems.

  5. David permalink
    October 7, 2008 1:56 pm

    By the way. I do feel that the people fielding, and believing these character assasinations are suffering from acute-paranoia. I mean, do you really believe that Obama is the enemy-of-the-state? Listen to yourselves.

  6. October 7, 2008 3:00 pm

    David- You are a great guy and a great American for a teabag: honest, thrifty, self-relieant etc. Ben Franklin would love you.

    But you believe the Iraq war was “staged”. If that’s not acute paranoia, I don’t know what is! Listen to yourself why you’re at it.

    I think the Duke and I would be much, much more comfortable with a Hillary Clinton presidency. She could have easily beaten McCain. Not so much the others.

    Ideas matter. Barack Obama is not evil, but he has has long associations with some very unsavory people. All politicians have transient relationships that are not good in retrospect. This is not the case with Obama. And he has not been honest about it. The possibility of Obama sharing some ideological points with these people, especially his former Pastor, is very likely.

    The big lie is that Obama is some kind of centrist post-racial candidate. The big lie is that Republicans are so evil that they would stage a war for profit.

    Timmy can you back me up on point 2 or not?

  7. David permalink
    October 7, 2008 4:18 pm

    I never said the Iraq war was staged. I said that the admin lied to go to war, there’s a difference.
    The profit of this war is just the icing on the cake. Don’t forget that there were Iraqi contractors who where qualified for the job of rebuilding, but were passed over in favor of American Contractors- Watch the documentary ‘Iraq for Sale’ to see what a fleecing the taxpayer got and is still getting.

    I suggest you read Mother Jones’ Bush-War timeline (link found here).

    It is an excellent log of many of the events leading up to and during this unjustified war. By the way, it also has some Bill Clinton revelations in there. There are links to news stories that back up all the data that’s in the timeline (including National Intelligence Reports, dissenting Generals etc.) It also includes the deliberate distortions of truth about the threat of Hussein, and the deliberate torture of detainess etc. Please read it! Then you will understand that my so called paranoia is actually backed up by the truth-It’s all documented. I dare you to read it!

    Also below, here’s the introduction to wet your appetite. More than ever it is time to speak truth to power, after all, we are the people.

    Intro reads as follows-

    At a June 2006 congressional hearing examining the march to war in Iraq, Republican congressman Walter Jones posed “a very simple question” about the administration’s manipulation of intelligence: “How could the professionals see what was happening and nobody speak out?”

    Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson, Colin Powell’s former chief of staff, responded with an equally simple answer: “The vice president.” It is easy to pass judgment on Dick Cheney, for there is no longer any reasonable doubt that the vice president willfully distorted the threat posed by Saddam Hussein’s Iraq while abusing the power of his office to suppress countervailing information. The administration’s dead certainty about the righteousness of “regime change” was like a cancer: Al Qaeda and Saddam were in league—they just had to be. So detainees would be tortured. And torture would breed false confessions—of collaboration and chemical weapons training—providing essential lies that girded the case for a preordained war.

    But the blame for Iraq does not end with the vice president, President Bush, or even Donald Rumsfeld’s Pentagon. Nor is it limited to the intelligence operatives who sat silent as the administration cherry-picked its case for war, or to those, like Colin Powell or Hans Blix, who, in the name of loyalty or statesmanship, did not give full throat to their misgivings.

    It is shared by useful idiots from the Fourth Estate. The New York Times’ Judith Miller, to be sure. But also the editors of the Washington Post who routinely relegated vital reporting on the flimsiness of the administration’s Iraq intel to Page A13. Blame also belongs squarely on the shoulders of the 94 U.S. senators who could not be bothered to read the full 92-page National Intelligence Estimate on Iraq—which contained far more dissenting intelligence than had ever been made public in the national debate—before voting to send American troops to war.

    And it lies, inescapably, with we the American people, who, in our fear and rage over the catastrophic events of September 11, 2001, allowed ourselves to be suckered into the most audacious bait and switch of all time. Half a trillion dollars later, Saddam may be in jail, but Osama’s still at large—and nearly 60,000 Iraqis civilians and Americans troops are dead.

    How did it happen? This timeline is, in part, an effort to answer that question. It draws upon the essential news reporting of America’s finest journalists. And it is rounded out by tales of whistleblowers and administration turncoats—by the firsthand accounts of former Treasury Secretary Paul O’Neill, ex-counterterror czar Richard Clarke, and, yes, Colonel Wilkerson.

    The first drafts of history are, by their nature, fragmentary. They arrive tragically late, and too often out of order. Here, then, we have stripped the history of the Iraq War to its bare bones, and reconstructed a skeleton that we hope will be a key to resolving open questions of the Bush era. What did our leaders know, and when did they know it? And, perhaps just as important, what red flags did we miss, and how could we have missed them?

  8. David permalink
    October 7, 2008 4:36 pm

    How does that commandment go? “Thou Shalt Not Bear False-Witness”

  9. Timmy C. permalink
    October 7, 2008 8:18 pm

    Thisi isn’t a fake question (i don’t know this issue very well)…. you wrote this about the previous VP debate where biden said:

    …. we should be allowing bankruptcy courts to be able to re-adjust not just the interest rate you’re paying on your mortgage to be able to stay in your home, but be able to adjust the principal that you owe, the principal that you owe.

    (Bonus Palin gaffe: she said McCain was not against this idea- major oops!).

    That to me sounds a lot like price controls on housing. You know, socialism. Has it really come to that? Donald Sensing explains why this would destroy the housing market.

    How is that different than this from tonight?

    McCain: “I would order the secretary of the Treasury to immediately buy up the bad home loan mortgages in America and renegotiate at the new value of those homes at the diminished value of those homes and let people be able to make those payments and stay in their homes,”

  10. October 8, 2008 9:28 am

    I wasn’t real enthused hearing about McCain’s proposal that’s for sure. That’s John McCain for you though. He’s been right about some things some of the more ideological conservatives have insisted on though, so color me willing to listen. If it’s a choice between plans, then I guess I have to proceed on that level.

    More about it on his site

    The meat:

    The McCain Resurgence Plan would purchase mortgages directly from homeowners and mortgage servicers, and replace them with manageable, fixed-rate mortgages that will keep families in their homes. By purchasing the existing, failing mortgages the McCain resurgence plan will eliminate uncertainty over defaults, support the value of mortgage-backed derivatives and alleviate risks that are freezing financial markets.

    The McCain resurgence plan would be available to mortgage holders that:

    * Live in the home (primary residence only)

    * Can prove their creditworthiness at the time of the original loan (no falsifications and provided a down payment).

    The new mortgage would be an FHA-guaranteed fixed-rate mortgage at terms manageable for the homeowner. The direct cost of this plan would be roughly $300 billion because the purchase of mortgages would relieve homeowners of “negative equity” in some homes. Funds provided by Congress in recent financial market stabilization bill can be used for this purpose; indeed by stabilizing mortgages it will likely be possible to avoid some purposes previously assumed needed in that bill.

    The plan could be implemented quickly as a result of the authorities provided in the stabilization bill, the recent housing bill, and the U.S. government’s conservatorship of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. It may be necessary for Congress to raise the overall borrowing limit.

    It’s not enough to justify this kind of plan on “being nice”. Framing it also as an issue of quantifying a loss so that banks can proceed on that basis makes sense. Limiting it to primary residence makes sense.

    Also making a legislative program- rather than leaving it up to judges- also makes more sense. The policy can be made clear and seems like a lot more streamlined than getting lots of lawyers involved, if for consistency’s sake if nothing else.

    McCain is going to be dealing with a Democratic congress and has to have something palatable for them as well. I don’t like it but that’s the likely turnout.

    The Palin gaffe was from a media matters post I saw. I guess they’ll have to change it! She really does know what she’s talking about!

  11. David permalink
    October 8, 2008 11:04 am

    The Truth about Barack Obama and William Ayers

    Smear groups and now a desperate McCain campaign are trying to connect Barack to William Ayers using age-old guilt by association techniques. Here’s the truth: the smear associating Barack to Ayers is “phony,” “tenuous,” – even “exaggerated at best if not outright false.”

    William Ayers is a professor of education at the University of Illinois at Chicago, with whom Barack served on the board of an education-reform organization in the mid-1990’s. According to the Associated Press, they are not close: “No evidence shows they were “pals” or even close when they worked on community boards years ago …”

    Smear groups and the McCain campaign are trying to connect Obama to acts Ayers committed 40 years ago – when Barack was just eight years old. Here’s what the New York Times reported on the connection:

    But the two men do not appear to have been close. Nor has Mr. Obama ever expressed sympathy for the radical views and actions of Mr. Ayers, whom he has called “somebody who engaged in detestable acts 40 years ago, when I was 8.”

    Barack has publicly denounced Ayers’ radical actions from the 1960’s:

    Senator Obama strongly condemns the violent actions of the Weathermen group, as he does all acts of violence. But he was an eight-year-old child when Ayers and the Weathermen were active, and any attempt to connect Obama with events of almost forty years ago is ridiculous.

    Fight back with the truth: make sure anyone who has seen this smear also sees this page.

  12. Timmy C. permalink
    October 8, 2008 12:16 pm

    On the housing proposals…

    So the differences are these, right?

    – One is judicial, the McCain’s plan would be legislative

    – I think the one Biden was referring to was ONLY for bankruptcies, and McCains was for ALL Homeowners living in their home and are under financial stress and their initial loan had a down payment?

    – The one was about granting authority for Bankruptcy judges to enforce and not cost taxpayers anything, McCain’s was the government BUYING the mortgages at taxpayer cost of 300 billion?
    And the taxpayer is paying for the difference between what the first loan was, and what the final government altered loan is.

    Did i gt those as the main differences right?

    I have no objections to government action to help keep people in their homes… and am trying to just understand the contours of both ideas.

    Aside from the 300 billion cost to taxpayers, versus the cost hitting the lenders, they sound very similar: the government steps in and does in essence a big reset on previous private contracts between lenders and homeowners.

  13. Timmy C. permalink
    October 8, 2008 1:05 pm

    Also, on McCain’s plan wouldn’t taxpayers also be liable for the risk for future home defaults…for instance, once they own all those thousands (millions?) of loans are in place if the housing market drops further and these new loans default…. so that would seem like an additional taxpayer risk on top of the $300 billion.

  14. October 8, 2008 1:14 pm

    There is no free lunch Tim.

    The loss will be absorbed by individual homeowners, banks or the taxpayer. Or some combination. I definitely don’t like the idea of a judge stepping in and voiding the terms of a contract. Not only do I suspect that’s a little iffy in the constitutional area, it just doesn’t sit well on a common sense level. Why judges? If one person gets a better deal than the other, won’t that create even more chaos?

    The government buying the mortgage at least preserves the security of contracts which I think is very very important.

    Limiting it to the house you occupy also makes sense – I would hope Obama has that in mind as well.

    I’m not fan of this idea though. I don’t like making exceptions because of a crisis. Those kinds of choices tend to become permanent.

    Another factoid about the CRA: in order for a bank to have an outstanding rating (the highest) they had to

    (E) An excellent record of serving the credit needs of highly economically disadvantaged areas in its assessment area(s), low- income individuals, or businesses (including farms) with gross annual revenues of $1 million or less, consistent with safe and sound operations;

    Whether the loan was made through CRA or not, the rating on the bank depended on engaging in CRA type behavior. “Consistent with sound operations” obviously took on a new meaning in an environment where home values were going up and up. If someone defaulted the likely hood of making money was still there because you could just sell the house.

    If you didn’t make these kinds of loans, you would lower your rating, and be labled a rascist redliner to boot.

    Therefore I don’t think you can blame “deregulation” as much as lack of oversight. Perhaps splitting a hair, but I don’t think deregulation mandated bad behavior created a moral hazard.

    Threads like this is why I don’t make new posts and get more hits…

  15. Timmy C. permalink
    October 8, 2008 5:00 pm

    Hey Dave:

    Yep no free lunch. Well, let me take that back, under McCain’s plan, don’t Banks and Mortgage lenders get a free lunch?

    The government buys ALL the loans from them, paying them billions. They they walk away free from any further responsibilities. That is one NICE free lunch. With desert.

    From then on it’s the government owning the mortgages, and tax payer getting the bill…and all the additional risks of further defaults if things get worse.

    On this we agree:

    “I’m not fan of this idea though.”

    Wow, I guess McCain can bring folks of different political parties together!

    And speaking of CRA, the very quote you mentioned said the loans had to be ““Consistent with sound operations.” The more I look, the more convinced I get that the issue about the banks not being able to self-regulate THAT sound operation and not haveing any other meaningful refs on the field, not the CRA.

    Every single person i see blamng the CRA has a ideological axe to grind. Every one.

    BTW: Ritholtz is still on that at his blog, see today’s post:

    Blaming the CRA and Fannie/Freddie is a total misunderstanding of how the problem occurred, and what we need to do to fix it now, and avoid doing it again in the future.

    To repeat my prior arguments, the proximate cause of the Housing crisis were 1) Ultra-low rates; and 2) Abdication of traditional lending standards, thanks to 3) originators ability to resell mortgages for securitization purposes, and hence, 4) not have to worry about loan defaults.

    The credit crisis was caused by 1) the above securitized mortgage paper, that was 2) rated triple AAA by Moody’s and Standard & Poors, which then 3) Which was then “insured” by credit default swaps (CDS) — the unreserved for, shadow insurance products 4) whose exemption was made possible by the Commodities Futures Modernization Act. That legislation exempted these derivatives from any supervision or regulation. The lack of reserve requirements is why there is now $62 trillion in CDS, many of which will never pay their counter parties the promised insurance.

    If you are going to blame Fannie/Freddie/CRA, or George Bush or Barney Frank, you are missing the big picture.

  16. Timmy C. permalink
    October 8, 2008 5:07 pm

    BTW: just for grins, with this market crisis I discovered this whole other wing of wonky economics bloggers heretofore never heard of to me…

    Here are the top ranked ones, and my man Ritholtz is the second highest rank: (funny how every subculture has it’s rankings)

  17. David permalink
    October 8, 2008 9:03 pm

    Timmy C. Thanks for the comment. Could you post the link of Ritholz’s blog

  18. Timmy C. permalink
    October 9, 2008 8:42 am

  19. Timmy C. permalink
    October 9, 2008 2:03 pm

    Yep, McCain mortgage plan does bring people together, like the National Review and Sen. Dodd and Rep. Barney Frank:

    “We never thought we would defend the Frank-Dodd legislation, which we bitterly opposed last summer. But it looks downright prudent compared to what McCain has proposed. McCain’s plan is a full bailout for lenders, and it cannot do much more than the Frank-Dodd bill without letting “ruthless borrowers” and other reckless types off the hook. It is time to acknowledge that the government has gone as far as it can without creating a level of moral hazard that is unacceptable. Give Frank-Dodd — and the Paulson plan — time to work.”

  20. October 9, 2008 10:24 pm

    I don’t like either Obama’s plan or McCain’s plan. If I am fixated on blaming the CRA for idealogical reasons I certainly suspect the reverse is the case as well. You don’t seem to understand that a bank didn’t have to participate in some kind of CRA F/F program in order for the CRA (and groups like ACORN) to have an effect. Let’s not pretend that Democrats like yourself are also trying to blame everything on deregulation and deny that they had anything to do with this mess. That’s exactly what you seem to be doing.

    I would hasten to add that it was not only Democrats, but liberal Republicans like George Bush who signed the American Dream Downpayment Act of 2003

    I wonder how many of those people are now defaulting.

    Also, you began this thread by making the case that the McCain plan and the Obama plan are not that different. Yet you now advance the case the the McCain plan is somehow worse.

    Buying up mortgages sounds like a terrible idea to me. I stick by my first point.

    In a similar vein, I see you keeping on the Obama message of criticizing deregulation. Fair enough. But to pretend that the various pressures from the CRA and Fannie/Freddie situation are somehow distantly related seems like another dodge to me. Fannie and Freddie backed what like half the mortgages in America? How could that be anything but foundational.

    Besides, if Fannie/Freddie are making money hand over fist (or so it seemed) by making these kinds of loans, why wouldn’t everyone else want to get into it. Point #2 above is “abidcation of traditional lending standards”.

    The solution is not idealogical but practical: restore sound lending and business practices based on common sense. I think there have been purist idealogical agendas at both ends of this problem.

    Still, if sound lending practices had been followed, it seems this other wall street shenanigans wouldn’t have been as harmful.

  21. Timmy C. permalink
    October 10, 2008 9:18 am

    “Also, you began this thread by making the case that the McCain plan and the Obama plan are not that different. Yet you now advance the case the the McCain plan is somehow worse.”

    Actually I started off asking you about the two plans, I wasn’t aware of details of either.
    After seeing the differences, I ended up siding with National Review. Crazy that.

    And this, really isn’t my position at the moment:

    “Let’s not pretend that Democrats like yourself are also trying to blame everything on deregulation and deny that they had anything to do with this mess. That’s exactly what you seem to be doing.”

    No, lots more than deregulation. See the post before:

    “The proximate cause of the Housing crisis were:

    1) Ultra-low rates; and 2) Abdication of traditional lending standards, thanks to 3) originators ability to resell mortgages for securitization purposes, and hence, 4) not have to worry about loan defaults.

    The credit crisis was caused by:

    1) the above securitized mortgage paper, that was 2) rated triple AAA by Moody’s and Standard & Poors, which then 3) Which was then “insured” by credit default swaps (CDS) — the unreserved for, shadow insurance products 4) whose exemption was made possible by the Commodities Futures Modernization Act. That legislation exempted these derivatives from any supervision or regulation. The lack of reserve requirements is why there is now $62 trillion in CDS, many of which will never pay their counter parties the promised insurance.”

    And as I said, Dems and Republicans had fault in these. But the CRA wasn’t one. Not even close.

    And no one is saying F/F were distantly relatedjust not the cause they were the symptoms of the larger problems listed above.

    BTW, going through the list of top 15 traffic ranked Economic bloggers I found almost everyone that addresses the CRA agrees with Ritholz, who himself is a political independent.

    3rd most ranked econ blogger on the CRA:

    This is the first time I’ve seen CRA invoked as a reason for the explosion in subprime lending. It was entirely profit driven, or now what we recognize as “fantasy of profit driven,” unless you were a mortgage originator and didn’t have to care much about what happened on the back end (it turns out agreements that the final buyers of subprime paper had with the mortgage originators to recoup losses if defaults exceeded certain levels proved to be worthless. Duh….

    So this spurious invoking of the CRA may be a way to shunt blame from the Fed, by making it sound as if the primary aim of subprime lending was to meet regulatory requirements, and hence there was no reason for the Fed to intervene.”

    4th most ranked econ blogger on the CRA (and he’s no fan of it, but agrees it was not the cause of the meltdown):

    This is one of the queries I receive, in varying forms, every day. Did policies such as the Community Reinvestment Act significantly worsen the housing bubble and the subsequent collapse? Basically not, although in my view these were bad policies for other reasons. They contributed to our current problems by only a small amount and of course these policies have been around for a long time before the housing bubble ever got started. Here is one back-of-the-envelope debunking of the “diversity recession” idea.

    (he then links to another econ blogger:

    And the 7th highest ranked econ blogger:

    Yet Again, It Wasn’t the Community Reinvestment Act…
    Another attempt to blame the Community Reinvestment Act for the subprime crisis. Don’t believe a word of it…

  22. David permalink
    October 10, 2008 12:13 pm

    The immoral act that Palin is doing should be condemned. The crowds are getting riled up and Palin and McCain are not tempering them and, instead, letting the crowd take over. This is getting desperate and shocking. Good leadership should be keeping this at a civil level, not inciting an angry mob, that’s for Frankenstein movies. This is not good leadership, this is demagoguery at it most vile.


  1. William Ayers, Barack Obama, Black Panthers and the Weathermen « Goodtimepolitics

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