Thursday, January 31, 2008

Debate impressions

As I suspected, Obama is stuttering, unfocused, and rambling. Clinton is together, she is focused, she is concise. Obama's got a real weakness in debates, and it could be a serious liability.

Still, I have to admit that I'm swept away a little bit by the historic nature of this whole thing. For the first time in over 200 years of American history, the two major candidates of one party are a black man and a woman. This is a huge change in American politics. A huge change. And I think that's really going to make this whole election cycle a dynamic, energetic, and quite frankly amazing experience. This cynical progressive idealist can't wait to see what happens.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

The official Sinister endorsement

Sinister is officially endorsing Hillary Clinton for President.

The truth of the matter is that this blogger has not always liked Hillary Clinton. I found her too calculating, too politically manipulative, and I doubted the authenticity of what she claimed to represent. At this point in the campaign, those criticisms must take a back seat to the larger question of which candidate will best represent the Democratic Party and stands the best chance to take back the White House in November.

It is clear that Barack Obama has a lot of passion and a whole lot of charisma. Unfortunately, his political track record is very thin, and I think he's going after this nomination eight years too early. His political missteps on the trail, especially his inclusion of an “ex-gay” preacher on his gospel tour, whom he refused to remove after it was revealed that the preacher in question thought of homosexuality as a sin and an abomination, combined with his seeming naivete in foreign policy matters, which is exacerbated by his tendency to stumble and stutter in debates, make this blogger question whether Obama has the judgment and the political savvy necessary for the long campaign road ahead. Obama needs a good dose of gravitas to go with his veritas, and without that, I'm afraid he'll be too much of an easy target for a seasoned political operative like McCain.

Clinton, on the other hand, has gravitas, charisma, and the political will to take this campaign all the way. She is powerful on the stump, and she is forceful in debates, as proven before the New Hampshire primary. She's also got a powerful ally in her husband, who, despite his political shortcomings on trade, civil rights, and other issues, was unquestionably the best President in recent memory. It is clear, however, that the two of them need to find the necessary balance between strong campaigning and negative politics. We are (we hope) coming out of the dark tunnel of the Bush Presidency into the new light of a Democratic administration. We need to unite on a platform of positive thinking, optimism, and hope. Our nominee should reflect that positive spirit.

In short, Hillary Clinton represents the best hope for the Democratic Party to retake the White House in November. It is true that she has a lot of work to do to try to soften the rancorous vitriol against her that comes from various factions both on the left and the right. Doing so will help to alleviate concern about her effect on “down ticket” races, the allegiance of independent voters, and the fear that she will unite the Republican Party against her. I am convinced, however, that if she can win me over, she can win any Democrat over.

Hillary gets the Sinister endorsement

Officially, finally, and irrefutably.

Hillary Clinton is best prepared to take on John McCain in the fall. She's got the most experience, she's good on the stump, and she's good in debates. Obama is not good in debates, and that could be a real achilles heel. I'll do a fuller statement later.


Now Edwards is dropping out.


Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Giuliani to quit race, endorse McCain

Well that's good news - we got 9iu11iani out of the race. Bad news is that we really don't want McCain as the Repug nom...

I had fully intended to post a detailed report on the Edwards event, but I just spent 2 hours auditioning for a TV show, so I'm a little drained at the moment.

By the way, I got the gig - I'm now in a late night cable access sketch comedy show called Biopsy Playhouse. It should be interesting...

Edwards in Tulsa

Quick post because I'm at work. I just saw John Edwards speak, and I think he won me over.

Two reasons:

1) His health care plan includes mental health parity and an end to pre-existing conditions.

2) He talked about free college tuition at state schools for high school graduates who agree to work 10 hours a week.

And I've decided to forgive him for 1) being an hour late and 2) not taking questions.

I'll post some pics and a more detailed report later.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Good GOD Objectivists are insane

"To save lives, legalize trade in organs."

This from the Ayn Rand institute. They're arguing in favor of legalizing buying and selling human organs on a free market basis. Are these people serious??

I've read a lot of Rand's work. She's an eloquent writer, for a psychopath.

Sinister now on the front page of Google

Go on, google Sinister. You'll find us there on the front page.


Saturday, January 26, 2008

John Edwards to campaign in Tulsa on Tuesday

At the TWU union hall at 8:45 AM. I think I'm going to have to try to make a trip out there for that.

I'm still split between Hillary and Edwards. Tomorrow I'm helping with a phone bank for Hillary.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Ok, here's the deal

This presidential race is driving me batty. I hate that Hillary and Obama are beating the crap out of each other. It's bad politics, and it's bad for the Democratic Party. However, astute readers of this blog will recognize that I predicted exactly this kind of thing happening, and I hoped that Edwards could use the bickering to rise up and look like a civilized alternative. The problem is that this is such a heavily media-influenced campaign, and the media has refused to take Edwards seriously. Plus, Edwards has a money problem that can't be ignored.

However, here's another wrinkle. It looks now like neither Hillary nor Obama will lock up the nomination on February 5th, and Edwards might be able to get enough delegates to play "kingmaker" at the convention. That might swing me back towards voting for Edwards.

The other problem, however, is that I really do not want Obama as our nominee. I'm sorry, but I really dislike the guy. That might mean that I have to vote for Hillary.

With all of this confusion and uncertainty, it is impossible, at this time, for Sinister to stick to an endorsement of any candidate. The only thing I can do is to give a strong anti-endorsement to Obama. Vote Hillary or Edwards, that's all I ask.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Kucinich out

Well, I wish him the best as he moves on to another term in Congress. I know in a recent post I gave an endorsement to Hillary, but I reserve the right to change my mind if John Edwards does well in South Carolina and Florida. If that happens, Edwards gets my vote back. God, I'm fickle.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

YAY! day

I like this idea from Bill in Portland Maine, a Daily Kos diarist who does the column "Cheers and Jeers." This is from his Friday C&J:

"America to celebrate YAY! Day festivities on Sunday

Everything on Sunday is cancelled except drinking, debauchery, merriment and football. I'm declaring it a national holiday.

Sunday, January 20th, will mark one year until Bush and Cheney leave office. Just think: every calendar day that passes from Sunday on will be the last one they serve as president and vice president.

January 21st will be their last January 21st.
March 18th---the day we invaded Iraq---will be their last March 18th.
May 1st---"Mission Accomplished" day---will be their last May 1st.
June 20th---"Last throes of the insurgency" day---will be their last June 20th.
September 2nd---"Heckuva job, Brownie" day---will be their last September 2nd.

Date after date will pass, never to again exist under the dark cloud of this greedy, crony-filled, incompetent, lying, power-mad administration. This fact alone---despite war and recession and constitution-shredding and the knowledge that one year of Bush/Cheney is like 5 human years---will produce a little daily rainbow in my brain. A little spring in my step. A little tingle "down there" (in my toes, you pervs).

So I'm declaring Sunday a holiday: Yes--A Year! Day. ("YAY! Day" for short.) I urge you to spend some quality time with your loved ones, pop open a bottle of champagne, and celebrate the last gasp of a president whose number-one priority these days is ending his term at 45% approval. We have two words to say about that: good luck."

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

National Jewish Democratic Council report on McCain

I received this note from the NJDC today:


“ ... the Christian right has a major role to play in the Republican Party.”
- John McCain [New York Times, 4/3/06]


McCain stated that a candidate’s Christian faith is "an important characteristic" for a president, that he would prefer a Christian president and that the "Constitution established the United States of America as a Christian nation." Furthermore, despite criticism, a statement from his official campaign spokeswoman defended the comments and said again, "America is a Christian nation, and it is hardly a controversial claim." [The New York Sun, October 1, 2007].

McCain has voted two-thirds of the time against bills supported by Americans United for the Separation of Church and State. [Project Vote Smart]

McCain took back his 2000 comments calling the late Jerry Falwell an "agent of intolerance;" telling Tim Russert that Falwell is NOT an agent of intolerance. He delivered the commencement address at Falwell’s Liberty University in May 2006. [ThinkProgress, 4/2/06]

Senator McCain supports repealing Roe v. Wade and has achieved a 0% voting record by the National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League (NARAL). His campaign has bashed opponent Mitt Romney for being insufficiently committed to the anti-choice cause. []

McCain is on record saying that religion should be taught as science in our public schools in the model of "intelligent design." The Arizona Daily Star reported that McCain "sided with the president" on "teaching intelligent design in schools;" McCain "told the Star that, like Bush, he believes 'all points of view' should be available to students studying the origins of mankind." [Arizona Daily Star, 8/24/05]

McCain endorsed an Arizona ballot initiative that banned both gay marriage and civil unions by writing discrimination into the Arizona constitution. [Arizona Republic 1/8/06]


McCain has a far right voting record. According to Project Vote Smart <,> McCain:

Has only voted 15% of the time with the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights;
Has only voted 33% of the time with the American Civil Liberties Union;
Has only voted 33% of the time with the pro-gay rights Human Rights Campaign;
Has only voted 7% of the time (only 7%!) with the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).

In 2006, McCain endorsed far right wing candidate Rep. Randy Graf for election to Congress and extremist Len Munsil for Governor of Arizona. Graf proudly touted his affiliations with the Minuteman Project, an anti-immigration group that watches the Mexican border with the intent of enforcing immigration laws on a vigilante basis. Len Munsil is one of the most prominent religious right leaders in Arizona. Arizona Daily Star, 10/8/06, Mohave Daily News 9/13/06.

In 2006, McCain also endorsed extreme conservative Kenneth Blackwell in the primary in his race for Governor of Ohio – Blackwell faced moderate Republicans in the primary. []

McCain hired Terry Nelson for his campaign; Nelson was accused of producing race-bating ads against Democratic nominee Harold Ford in the 2006 Ohio Senate race. [NJDC Blog, 12/7/06]


McCain named lobbyist (and former Rep.) Tom Loeffler as his campaign’s general co-chairman – Loeffler lobbies for the Saudi government. Loeffler received nearly a million dollars per year from the Saudis, his job within the McCain campaign has been described as such: "Loeffler will play a similar role to that of Don Evans during then Texas Governor George W. Bush's 2000 campaign, managing McCain's interests across a variety of intersecting universes -- donors lobbyists Capitol Hill and the executive branch." [Washington Post, 4/3/07; Washington Post, 3/7/07]

McCain named Fred Malek as a finance co-chair; Malek was dispatched by Richard Nixon to count the number of Jews employed in the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Nixon claimed that a cabal of Jews working at the Bureau were skewing economic figures to harm his administration. Malek was deputy director of CREEP, the Committee to Re-Elect the President. It should be noted that Malek later expressed regret for his actions. [The Nation, 4/3/07]

McCain suggested that he may name James Baker as Middle East envoy, were he elected to the White House. [FrontPage Magazine, 5/12/06]


On his campaign bus in March of 2000 Sen. John McCain told reporters, "I hated the gooks. I will hate them as long as I live." [Seattle Post-Intelligencer, 3/2/00]

At Murrells Inlet VFW Hall in South Carolina, McCain was asked when he thought the US Military might "send an air mail message to Tehran." "McCain began his answer by changing the words to a popular Beach Boys song," the Georgetown Times reported . "'Bomb bomb bomb, bomb bomb Iran,' he sang to the tune of Barbara Ann." [Boston Globe, - Dec 23, 2007]

In November, 2007 a John McCain supporter in South Carolina asked him "How do we beat the bitch" in reference to Senator Hillary Clinton. Senator McCain response was to laugh and respond "That's an excellent question." [New York Times 11/14/07]

In an April 16, 2007 letter to Servicemember’s Legal Defense Network (SLDN), McCain stated that the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy instituted in 1993, "unambiguously maintains that open homosexuality within the military services presents an intolerable risk to morale, cohesion and discipline." [§ion=2]

Tuesday, January 8, 2008


If the elections keep going this way, I may end up voting for Hillary. Never thought I'd see the day...

Here's why: Obama lost my vote when he featured an "ex-gay" preacher on his Gospel tour, and when confronted by it, didn't apologize, but instead shoved a gay preacher onto the top of the bill in a spot where he was largely ignored.

If my vote counts on Feb. 5th, and it's clear Edwards isn't going to pull it out, and it's down to Hillary vs. Obama, well, shit, Hillary gets it.

Here's something else:

Over the past few days, Hillary has "won me over." That is, if I had had no preconceived opinion about her before this last week, and I was an undecided voter, she would have convinced me to vote for her based on her debate performance and on her "humanizing" moments that got so much coverage. I think she's really turned a corner here. That's impressive. I have to give her credit where credit is due.

Really, though, if you look at the debate on Saturday - Hillary kicked ass, and Obama looked slightly uncomfortable. We need a nominee who is both good on the stump and good in the debates - and that ain't Obama.

I feel badly for Edwards - he worked his ass off for this nomination, and he's nowhere.

And you know what, I love Kucinich to death, but if the Feb. 5th primaries are gonna matter, which it looks like they are, then I need to cast a vote that'll matter.

Thus, with gritted teeth and a forced smile, Sinister hereby gives its endorsement to Hillary Clinton.


Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Gay divorce

Interesting article on the complications that same sex couples have to deal with when trying to divorce. It's another example of how DOMA and the lack of federal recognition for same sex marriages leads to a separate and unequal system that unfairly complicates and hurts gay and lesbian couples.