Thursday, September 04, 2008

McCain / Palin 2008

I believe in John McCain and Sarah Palin. I enjoy discussing chess more than politics, but America matters, so please take a moment to read this.

Why is McCain / Palin better for our nation than Obama / Biden?

• McCain puts our nation first.

John McCain repeatedly requested dangerous assignments during the Vietnam Conflict. When the deck of the USS Forestal was ablaze, he risked his life trying to save a fellow pilot and was struck by shrapnel in the process.

On his 23rd air combat mission over North Vietnam his A-4 Skyhawk was struck by a missile. His bones were broken, he was stabbed with bayonets, he was taken prisoner and tortured by the North Vietnamese.

After his captors realized he was the son of an admiral, they offered to send him home for propaganda purposes. He refused... until every serviceman who had been captured before him was released. He remained a prisoner of war for years. The torture was so bad it caused his hair to turn white.

What sacrifices have Barrack Obama made for our country? Why should we believe Obama even gives a damn about this country?

• McCain can unite our country.

Believe it or not, John McCain was able to put the past behind him and work with Democrats to restore diplomatic relations with Vietnam. John has an unusual history as a maverick, supporting the best ideas of both parties. His government would include Republicans, Democrats, and Independents.

In 2007 Obama voted according to the "party line" 88% of the time; he also had the most liberal voting record of any senator.

• McCain is intelligent and experienced.

It's obvious to most Americans that McCain has a huge edge in the experience department. Over 26 years in the senate plus 22 years in the military.

In the words of Hillary Clinton, "Sen. McCain will bring a lifetime of experience to the campaign. I will bring a lifetime of experience. And Sen. Obama will bring a speech that he gave in 2002."

Sarah Palin has more executive experience than Obama. In her role as governor, she also has earned an impressive 80% approval rating.


chesstiger said...

As a foreigner i always have a chuckle when i see the battles of Democrats and Republicains. Most of all if both parties fire one liners after one liners at each others without really lissening to eachother, with other words just talking aside eachother.

You said Obama voted alongside the party line many many times but you forgot to mention that McCain did the same. So that's not an argument. Actually if one votes for more then 90% alongside the party line one can hardly call experience. It's more being a yes nodder and holding your hand open for the paycheck of a senator.

Also not an argument is his record in the Army. Bush made that impossible by putting the experiences in war of his opponent as previous election down as not important.

Against McCain i would put his age and his forgetfullness when it suits him.He says he puts his nation first but i have doubts by this. Also his VP will be more then his VP since John is old and has already battled some forms of cancer. I doubt many Americains like to have Palin as (interim) president. Palin who is even under investigation by the Justice department for misuse of power. One can wonder if she will not do the same when she's VP?

Also the policy of those new tax laws which only benefit the rich and let the poor people pay more isn't a thing that will benefit the McCain ticket. And then i am not even speaking of the veto against the healt care for children.

No, obama will not have clean hands either but atleast they will be less dirty then those of the McCain ticket.

This all said is to say that foreigners probably would rather see Obama/Bidden then McCain/Palin in power in america.

Glenn Wilson said...

The Republican Platform explained.

likesforests said...

ChessTiger> "You said Obama voted alongside the party line many many times but you forgot to mention that McCain did the same. So that's not an argument."

Actually, Obama voted according to the party line 88% of the time (more than any other Democrat) while McCain voted according to his party only 59% of the time (less than almost everyone else) according to an independent and established journal.

That is an argument. But really, if you've been watching US news the last few years, you know senators McCain and Hagel often disagree with their parties and at times have been accused of being RINOs (Republicans in Name Only).

McCain's also the one who promised to include Democrats, Republicans, and Independents in his cabinet. He's about unifying this country.

ChessTiger>"Also not an argument is his record in the Army. Bush made that impossible by putting the experiences in war of his opponent as previous election down as not important."

Bush said X, so we must think X? I think most Americans have better reasoning than that. At least, us chess players do!

McCain's record in the army speaks to his integrity and patriotism.

ChessTiger> "He says he puts his nation first but i have doubts by this."

Why else do you think he accepted dangerous missions, risked his life to save fellow soldiers, and remained to be tortured despite an offer to release him (in order to help their propaganda message)?

Does Obama care about this country? Is he willing to make choices that damage him personally in order to serve it? Or is he merely excited by the prospects of wealth and power? Who knows...

> "Against McCain i would put his age"

Watch a video of him. Did you see him at the convention last night? He's still a strong man!

> "I doubt many Americains like to have Palin as (interim) president."

Obviously, I hope McCain serves his full term. But I would rather see Sarah Palin as president than Obama. She has more executive experience and she's dome some admirable things as a reformer at the risk of her career. That is probably one of the reasons she "clicked" with McCain.

> "Palin who is even under investigation by the Justice department for misuse of power."

The allegations don't seem to have much substance. They were known about before she was selected.

Palin has obviously been doing something right as governor of her state if 80% of Alaskans approve of her job performance. It may have something to do with how good she is at cutting waste, or the fact that she began with herself:

"While I was at it, I got rid of a few things in the governor's office that I didn't believe our citizens should have to pay for.

That luxury jet was over the top. I put it on eBay.

I also drive myself to work.

And I thought we could muddle through without the governor's personal chef - although I've got to admit that sometimes my kids sure miss her."

Liberals are scared of her. Early this week, fake photos of her were being spread on liberal blogs to try to discredit her. That's what people do when they're afraid to fight someone on the issues.

ChessTiger> "Also the policy of those new tax laws"

That's another reason I'm for McCain. Look, I'm years away from paying off even a condo, and Obama wants to poke me with more taxes when our economy is "sensitive". What could be crazier?

ChessTiger> "And then i am not even speaking of the veto against the healt care for children."

McCain has always agreed taxpayers should buy insurance for children whose parents could not afford it.

1999: "McCain also said he would change restrictions on the states' ability to enroll children in an existing government-backed health insurance program known as CHIP. Many uninsured children are eligible for the program, but aren't enrolled. For those who aren't eligible, McCain proposed tax relief aimed at helping families pay for child health care expenses."

He does not agree that the government should be responsible for managing healthcare for all children. Our government is very wasteful. When they get involved, we often end up paying twice what a service would have cost without their help. Yet another reason I would be excited to have two reformers in the White House.

ChessTiger> "No, obama will not have clean hands either but atleast they will be less dirty then those of the McCain ticket."

Are you serious? Have you read about Wright, Ayer, or Rezko? It's amazing how many skeletons Obama has in his closet for how little experience he has!

Nobody has a perfect record, but McCain / Palin have more claim to the high road than Obama / Biden. Heck, even Biden has issues. His own presidential bid failed when he plagiarized a British politician and further research revealed he got an F in one of his law classes for plagiarizing.

"foreigners probably would rather see Obama/Bidden then McCain/Palin"

Perhaps many foreigners dislike Bush and they believe since Bush and McCain are from the same party they must be very similar people, but that's not the case at all.

I think relationships with our allies will improve with either Obama or McCain in office.

That's important. Of course, who's best for America would be the top consideration for Americans. ;)

likesforests said...

lol @ Glenn. :)

likesforests said...
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likesforests said...

Glenn -- McCain is not Bush. In programmer speak...

mccain != bush

mccain <> bush

$mccain ne $bush

! [string compare $mccain $bush]

Glenn Wilson said...

"Things that are different are not the same." Obviously, Bush is not McCain.

But, they are both Republicans and have similar policies and similar priorities. In marketing shorthand: McSame.

More Political Humor

likesforests said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
likesforests said...

Chesstiger, I usually avoid discussing politics. But living outside this country, maybe you haven't seen how far some have gone to distort the issues.

First there were the false rumors that Trig Palin was Bristol's child and not Sarah's. Then there were the fake risque photos of Sarah. And of course the story that Bristol and Levi were being forced to marry each other.

And it's not just liberal blogs. According to a Rasmussen poll, 51% think the media is trying to hurt Palin, 35% think they're providing objective coverage, and only 5% believe they're trying to help Palin.

Then there is coverage itself. According to the Nielson ratings Obama was covered by 10 networks while Palin was only covered on 6. Despite that, she drew almost as many viewers. Obama drew 38.4M, Palin drew 37.2M. Only 24M were willing to watch Biden.

Also, Republic delegates (unlike Democrats) had to face the "RNC Welcoming Committee", a group of left-wing anarchists that planned to use molotov cocktails, slash tires, and beat delegates so they couldn't attend the convention.

Did liberal bloggers speak out against these thugs who are acting contrary to our principles of liberty and free speech? No way! Instead they supported them and demanded their immediate release.

I feel it's important for Americans to get accurate information about McCain / Palin.

likesforests said...


This is the one-liner Chesstiger referred to. Where's the meat? What policies does McCain support for the next four years that you feel will be bad for this nation?

Here is John McCain's Issues page where he explains what he really believes in.

Glenn Wilson said...

Like Bush, his priorities are the military industrial complex and the super rich. I did not find that on his web site. That is just my judgement based on his past deeds.

He was one of those who led us into Iraq: Mr. McCain began making his case for invading Iraq to the public more than six months before the White House began to do the same. link

I think killing hundreds of thousands of innocent Iraq citizens just because [insert reason here -- Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11, had no WMD and was no threat to the U.S.] is a very, very bad thing. The 4000+ plus American soldiers killed is a very, very bad thing. (Getting soldiers killed is not my idea of supporting the troops).

In my book, that makes Bush and McCain very, very bad men and their policies very, very bad policies.

Now, you might think the Iraq invasion was a good thing. If so, he may be a good candidate for you.

Anonymous said...


McCain is the correct man for our country. It saddens me that people are going go get elected just because of their race as opposed to their wisdom and knowledge. I'm not racist by all means but I think that if Barack was white, McCain would win by a landslide. I know my vote wont matter b/c New York always goes for the Democrat (incorrectly). Good luck to you!

likesforests said...

Glenn> his priorities are ... the super rich.

I'm not a rich man... not even close. My wife and I are programmers struggling to keep our jobs and pay off our condo in a few years, and then we can begin saving for college for our little one. I won't discuss my financial specifics, but... under the Obama plan I will face higher taxes. And when he increases taxes on businesses and capital gains, I may be laid off or miss out on a raise.

McCain fights for the working man, and for the man who can't work. He doesn't fight for the man who can work but chooses not to.

Glenn> you might think the Iraq invasion was a good thing.

No way. But at that time, only 1 in 3 Americans and 1 in 4 senators were opposed to invading Iraq. Even Hillary Clinton and Joe Biden voted to go to war. Obama did not vote because he wasn't even a senator then.

But don't stop there. About 5 months after the invasion, McCain suggested that a troop surge was necessary to win. From 8 months into the invasion onwards he became a vocal critic of Bush's mismanagement of the war which was costing both American and Iraqi lives.

After 3 years of occupation without convincing results, most Americans (including Obama) were ready to throw in the towel. But McCain stood up and again argued strongly for a troop surge (political analysts said this would likely cost him his 2008 presidential run). Finally Bush was desperate enough to listen. And the troop surge worked wonders. In Obama's words, it "succeeded beyond my wildest dreams." McCain was right!

Looking towards the future, I believe only John McCain has the military expertise to extricate our troops from Iraq without destabilizing the country and while minimizing loss of life. Obama may be a sharp guy, but like Bush, Obama knows little about military strategy and I don't want to lose more American lives while he learns.

Banatt said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Banatt said...

"In my book, that makes Bush and McCain very, very bad men and their policies very, very bad policies."

"Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11, had no WMD and was no threat to the U.S."

My thoughts exactly, but put into better words.

Banatt said...

What sacrifices have Barrack Obama made for our country?

How much younger is Obama again? Just because you didn't get shot to prove you love america, doesn't mean you don't love america.

Glenn Wilson said...

Obama and McCain Tax Proposals

But at that time, only 1 in 3 Americans and 1 in 4 senators were opposed to invading Iraq.
That is why we need moral leaders with imagination, vision and courage: Against Going to War with Iraq (2002) - Delivered on Wednesday, October 2, 2002 by Barack Obama:
"I know that even a successful war against Iraq will require a US occupation of undetermined length, at undetermined cost, with undetermined consequences. I know that an invasion of Iraq without a clear rationale and without strong international support will only fan the flames of the Middle East, and encourage the worst, rather than best, impulses of the Arab world, and strengthen the recruitment arm of al-Qaeda."

About 5 months after the invasion, McCain suggested that a troop surge was necessary to win. To win? To win what? We are no longer at war with Iraq. We are occupying Iraq. What we have now is a mess that some foresaw.

And the troop surge worked wonders. In Obama's words, it "succeeded beyond my wildest dreams."
So now we can leave and leave a peaceful stable middle east benind? No...we created a big mess and not amount of "surges" will fix that in our lifetimes.
(And Obama was referring to a military tactic that is largely not relevant to the larger issue.)

Hundreds of thousands of innocent Iraq citizens and over 4000 U.S. soldiers were killed to satisfy a few egos and line some pockets. Not to mention the billions of dollars the war has cost that you will eventually wind up paying your share in taxes.

I believe only John McCain has the military expertise to extricate our troops from Iraq without destabilizing the country and while minimizing loss of life. The issue is a diplomacy problem not a military problem (unless you think killing half of Iraq would be ok). Diplomacy is not McCain's strong suit.

Glenn Wilson said...

In terms of taxes, the economy and your personal well being:
Comparing Presidents, Comparing Parties

To Spend is to Tax

Glenn Wilson said...

"Obama ... in 2006-2007 he had the most liberal voting record of any senator."

See: Snopes.

If the point is to paint Obama as "extreme" then I think you will find a more accurate list here which mostly shows McCain about as "conservative" as Obama is "liberal".

Glenn Wilson said...

The Truth About Lying

BlunderProne said...


The Lies versus the facts. Please open your eyes beyond the "catch phrases" of inexperience and higher taxes and search for the facts:

PALIN: "I have protected the taxpayers by vetoing wasteful spending ... and championed reform to end the abuses of earmark spending by Congress. I told the Congress 'thanks but no thanks' for that Bridge to Nowhere."

THE FACTS: As mayor of Wasilla, Palin hired a lobbyist and traveled to Washington annually to support earmarks for the town totaling $27 million. In her two years as governor, Alaska has requested nearly $750 million in special federal spending, by far the largest per-capita request in the nation. While Palin notes she rejected plans to build a $398 million bridge from Ketchikan to an island with 50 residents and an airport, that opposition came only after the plan was ridiculed nationally as a "bridge to nowhere."

PALIN: "There is much to like and admire about our opponent. But listening to him speak, it's easy to forget that this is a man who has authored two memoirs but not a single major law or reform — not even in the state senate."

THE FACTS: Compared to McCain and his two decades in the Senate, Obama does have a more meager record. But he has worked with Republicans to pass legislation that expanded efforts to intercept illegal shipments of weapons of mass destruction and to help destroy conventional weapons stockpiles. The legislation became law last year. To demean that accomplishment would be to also demean the work of Republican Sen. Richard Lugar of Indiana, a respected foreign policy voice in the Senate. In Illinois, he was the leader on two big, contentious measures in Illinois: studying racial profiling by police and requiring recordings of interrogations in potential death penalty cases. He also successfully co-sponsored major ethics reform legislation.

PALIN: "The Democratic nominee for president supports plans to raise income taxes, raise payroll taxes, raise investment income taxes, raise the death tax, raise business taxes, and increase the tax burden on the American people by hundreds of billions of dollars."

THE FACTS: The Tax Policy Center, a think tank run jointly by the Brookings Institution and the Urban Institute, concluded that Obama's plan would increase after-tax income for middle-income taxpayers by about 5 percent by 2012, or nearly $2,200 annually. McCain's plan, which cuts taxes across all income levels, would raise after tax-income for middle-income taxpayers by 3 percent, the center concluded.

Obama would provide $80 billion in tax breaks, mainly for poor workers and the elderly, including tripling the Earned Income Tax Credit for minimum-wage workers and higher credits for larger families.

He also would raise income taxes, capital gains and dividend taxes on the wealthiest. He would raise payroll taxes on taxpayers with incomes above $250,000, and he would raise corporate taxes. Small businesses that make more than $250,000 a year would see taxes rise.

MCCAIN: "She's been governor of our largest state, in charge of 20 percent of America's energy supply ... She's responsible for 20 percent of the nation's energy supply. I'm entertained by the comparison and I hope we can keep making that comparison that running a political campaign is somehow comparable to being the executive of the largest state in America," he said in an interview with ABC News' Charles Gibson.

THE FACTS: McCain's phrasing exaggerates both claims. Palin is governor of a state that ranks second nationally in crude oil production, but she's no more "responsible" for that resource than President Bush was when he was governor of Texas, another oil-producing state. In fact, her primary power is the ability to tax oil, which she did in concert with the Alaska Legislature. And where Alaska is the largest state in America, McCain could as easily have called it the 47th largest state — by population.

MCCAIN: "She's the commander of the Alaska National Guard. ... She has been in charge, and she has had national security as one of her primary responsibilities," he said on ABC.

THE FACTS: While governors are in charge of their state guard units, that authority ends whenever those units are called to actual military service. When guard units are deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan, for example, they assume those duties under "federal status," which means they report to the Defense Department, not their governors. Alaska's national guard units have a total of about 4,200 personnel, among the smallest of state guard organizations.

FORMER ARKANSAS GOV. MIKE HUCKABEE: Palin "got more votes running for mayor of Wasilla, Alaska than Joe Biden got running for president of the United States."

THE FACTS: A whopper. Palin got 616 votes in the 1996 mayor's election, and got 909 in her 1999 re-election race, for a total of 1,525. Biden dropped out of the race after the Iowa caucuses, but he still got 76,165 votes in 23 states and the District of Columbia where he was on the ballot during the 2008 presidential primaries.

FORMER MASSACHUSETTS GOV. MITT ROMNEY: "We need change, all right — change from a liberal Washington to a conservative Washington! We have a prescription for every American who wants change in Washington — throw out the big-government liberals, and elect John McCain and Sarah Palin."

THE FACTS: A Back-to-the-Future moment. George W. Bush, a conservative Republican, has been president for nearly eight years. And until last year, Republicans controlled Congress. Only since January 2007 have Democrats have been in charge of the House and Senate.

OB in '08 ... I am still an American and Obama does put his country first. I sat through both conventions. Did you? I heard more bipartisanship on the Dems side and only attacks from teh republicans. I heard no talk of health care, no talk of the economy. I prefer the 95% tax break to the middle class ... yeah O will raise taxes but it will be to the greater than 250K earning folks.

Palin ( and Guliani) was condescending when talking about Obama's "community Organizing" versus "running a state"

All this talk about a war hero... yes he's one. But the war we are in is because of a MESS our current president sent us in when there was no THREAT from them...and that came out in the report!

Now, the question comes down to this: With the country in its present state ( Jobless rate highest at 6.1 percent in years, national debt, and economy and health care fiasco and jobs going over seas .. and I've trained my counterparts in India and China as my job went away in the past 8 years! ) Who is the right choice? A warrior or a community oraganizor? The later sounds like the better choice to me.

likesforests said...

banatt> "How much younger is Obama again?"

Obama's 47. At 47 McCain had already finished his military career and was serving in the US House of Representatives.

banatt> "Just because you didn't get shot to prove you love america, doesn't mean you don't love america."

The reasons I know McCain will put this country first have nothing to do with him being shot at. After all, cops shoot at criminals everyday and that doesn't prove that criminals are patriots. ;)

McCain served his country, accepted missions that were more hazardous then he had to, risked his life to save fellow soldiers, and chose to remain a prisoner and be tortured rather than go home (because the North Vietnamese would have used his early release for propaganda purposes.)

Taken together, that's how I know!

banatt> "Just because you didn't get shot to prove you love america, doesn't mean you don't love america."

Sure, but Banatt I ask you how do you know Obama loves this country... because he gave a speech where he says he does? And if you aren't sure, doesn't not knowing whether he cares more about wealth&power or this nation make you uncomfortable?

I think if someone is brave and deeply loves their country, by 47 they will have sacrificed for it in one way or another.

Sacrifice -- To give up something that is valuable to you in order to help another person.

I checked Obama's tax returns and I see no evidence of huge monetary sacrifices. In fact, before he ran for the US Senate, he appears to have given away an even smaller percentage of his salary to charitable causes than the average American does.

Glenn Wilson said...

More McSame

Tommyg said...

The main thing that I find interesting (and sad) is that so many people have already made up their mind who they are going to vote for.

It seems to me that the time between the coronations,(oops..conventions),
and the election should be the time we spend really getting to know each candidate. Now that they have their respective nominations, we may find out that Obama and McCain may not be as liberal or conservative as they have portrayed themselves to be during the primary season. We may learn that Biden and Palin are really the two most qualified people to be president. We may realize that we should have voted for the fringe guys like Ron Paul and Dennis Kucinich because they were really the ones with the countries' best interests at heart.

Or we may learn that the candidate that we really like right now is really the one we want to vote for.

All I am saying is that it would be nice if everyone kept an open mind and really tried to listen to what the candidates (not the pundits for either party), have to say over the next few months and THEN make a decision. Otherwise we might as well just have the election now.

Glenn Wilson said...


Unfortunately many Americans vote based on a couple of sound bites or personality or looks or advertising (some truthful, some not).

Be careful about listening to what each candidate says in the next few months and using that to make up your mind. I have found that the best indicator of what a politician will do in the future is what he or she has done in the past regardless of what they say they will do. What a politician says is often just what they think we need to hear. The closer to an election the more that is true.

I admire the positions of Kucinich and Paul on the Iraq War.

likesforests said...

Glenn> "McCain very, very bad men"

Banatt> "My thoughts exactly, but put into better words."

Really? Characterizing complex policy decisions are a battle of good vs evil is something even Obama has spoken out against:

"The left-wing, and their right-wing counterparts, instead of understanding politics is about competing policy decisions, sees it as a battle of good vs evil" (from memory, wording may not be 100% exact.)

People on the "wings" have stopped listening to the other side.

Banatt, what excites me about McCain besides that we know rather than hope he cares about the people of this nation... I wrote to you at length about that and am curious to hear your opinion on the matter...

What also excites me is McCain's about unity. While Obama also says he will 'change' partisan politics, he hasn't gone into many specifics. In contrast, McCain promises a cabinet of Democrats, Republicans, and Independents and points to his long history of working with both parties and voting independently on many issues (and again, according to the National Journal Obama almost always votes according to his party line, which is also not encouraging when we're looking for someone to unify the country).

Wouldn't a politician who actually listens to what both sides have to say be great? I imagine some will say it's impossible, but it can happen! In California we have Arnold Schwarzenneger. The left-wing and right-wing both attack him, but he's won both of his elections by a large margin with his platform of being "socially liberal but fiscally conservative". He's a Republican married to a Kennedy. ;)

Banatt said...

"[Obama] appears to have given away an even smaller percentage of his salary to charitable causes than the average American does."

That's because he got more money. Statistically, the richer you are, the less of a percent you give to charity. Makes sense. He gives, say, $1000 a month to charity, then gets a raise. He still gives $1000 a month. The percentage drops even though the dollar amount didn't.

So basically what was stated was that Obama is financially better than most Americans, which doesn't really surprise me.

likesforests said...

Bannatt> "That's because he got more money. Statistically, the richer you are the less of a percent you give to charity."

Certainly true.

Bannatt> "He gives, say, $1000 a month to charity, then gets a raise."

Here's his income vs annual charitable donations for the years before he was in the US Senate and planning his presidential campaign:

2004 / $207,647 / $2,500
2003 / $238,327 / $3,400
2002 / $259,394 / $1,050
2001 / $272,759 / $1,470
2000 / $240,505 / $2,350

There's nothing "wrong" with the amounts he donated. You asked how he could have sacrificed for his country besides fighting in a war and I was pointing out another way he could have made an extreme sacrifice... but didn't.

It really cuts to the core of one of my issues with Obama: "What sacrifices have Barrack Obama made for our country? Why should we believe Obama even gives a damn about this country?"

likesforests said...

tommyg, "The main thing that I find interesting (and sad) is that so many people have already made up their mind who they are going to vote for."

I can't help but feel the system itself shares the blame when we end up with a far-left Democrat vs a moderate Republican. If only Hillary were still in the running. I want a president who represents most Americans rather than the party who happens to have 2% more voters this election year.

Glenn Wilson said...

what excites me about McCain besides that we know rather than hope he cares about the people of this nation...
4,100+ American soldiers killed in Iraq. 30,000+ American soldiers injured in Iraq. Is that what "caring about the people of this nation" looks like?

This is probably my last comment in this post.

chesstiger said...


Not gonna debate with you since you probably, as voter, have delved deeper into all this blabla both candidates have poured over the mass then I.

However i must ask which media to believe since you say McCain only voted 59% the same as his party line while i read on other (most that i have seen) that McCain voted 95% the same as the partyline in 2007 and 100% so far in 2008.

likesforests said...

chesstiger, The National Journal, a non-partisan publication that is read by Washington insiders. Their technique is thoughtful and transparent. Of course, this poll is not going to be popular with Obama supporters trying to appeal to moderates and independents. Here's a short article where an editor explains the methodology and discusses criticisms:

Blue Devil Knight said...

Likeforests, these are empty talking points cut-and-paste from the McCain web site. I am surprised at the lack of thought, frankly.

Don't forget, Palin lived next to Russia, which gives her foreign policy experience.

likesforests said...

Blue Devil Knight, none of my text is cut + pasted. I'm surprised that you have no more to say than that. ;)

likesforests said...

I should add, with the exception of the Hillary Clinton quote. Obviously that is cut + pasted!

Blue Devil Knight said...

They both love their country, they both want to improve it. They simply have different visions, starkly different. Hence, the decision shouldn't be too hard for people to make once they settle down and do their homework on their policy stances.

Policy issues that are important to me:
1. Our economy is fucked and McCain is not going to pull back on the Bush tax cuts on the wealthy to help pull it in line. (Obama is going to cut taxes on the majority of Americans, incidentally).
2. Health care should be available to people even if they don't have money.
3. I want our energy policy to be less focused on petroleum and drilling, more focused on alternatives.
4. I want to pull troops out of Iraq ASAP, and don't want to elect someone that thinks Iraq was a just war.
5. I want a President that doesn't want religious views taught as science in biology classes (creationism or its recent incarnation, 'intelligent design').
6. Abstinence-only sex education is inadequate, and abortions should be legal.

I'm sure McCain is a swell fella', but I disagree with him on almost every issue in which there is a difference between him and Obama.

Blue Devil Knight said...

If you didn't cut and paste them, then I apologize, and I shouldn't have assumed that they were. They were vacuous, and you tend to not be, so I was giving you the benefit of the doubt. :)

Blue Devil Knight said...

On the experience question, I agree that is one variable that should be factored in. Bush was a governor too.

Experience doesn't guarantee good decision-making. Obama has shown excellent judgment in his views on Iraq and all the other policy questions I mentioned above. McCain, by his own admission, tends to make decisions too quickly. I am sick of the gut-based policy selection algorithm, and want someone more thoughtful and nuanced. The Palin choice, for instance, was crazy. Sure, it helped him politically, but there is no way she should be next-in-line for the presidency of our country.

I agree with Rove on the Palin choice:

Tommyg said...


The two party system is part of the problem but we are the ones who allow it to continue. Democrats and Republicans alike line up to support their "team". Politics has become the biggest spectator sport in America, and that is what it is: Sport! Too many people seem to more invested in their party then the country. Talk radio(and TV) is a big part of the problem. People like Rush Limbaugh, Al Franken, Sean Hannity and Jon Stewart do NOTHING for the dialogue. They just exacerbate an already volatile situation.

The funny thing is that the country seems to work best when neither party has complete control. Clinton did nothing until the Republicans took the House and the Senate in 1994. Once that happened he had to deal with Gingrich and Gingrich HAD to deal with Clinton. Consequently, we got a balanced budget, some genuine (although not easy) compromise and what seemed like a pretty happening economy.

If whoever does win the election also has their respective party controlling the house and senate it will cause problems because there will be no balance. We have seen it time and time again.

Anyway that is my two cents. I am not weighing in on either candidate because I am still thinking about it. Two months is a long time for me to learn all that I can about each of them and then make my decision. Who knows maybe I will write in Chessloser instead! :)

likesforests said...

tommyg, "Who knows maybe I will write in Chessloser instead! :)"

Sure, he's served his country! If we can agree on important social issues (like creating jobs by making being a knight errant a full time job!) he's got my vote. ;)

likesforests said...

chesstiger, if you want more than one number-crunching sources:

National Journal - Non-partisan political magazine.

National Journal, 2007:
Obama #1 liberal
McCain not ranked (too few votes, but given a 59% party agreement % on social issues)

National Journal, 2006:
Obama, #10 liberal
McCain, #54 conservative

CQ - Congressional Quarterly... another source of political info.

CQ Party Unity, 2007
Obama, 97%
McCain, 90%

CQ Party Unity, 2006
Obama, 96%
McCain, 76%

VoteView - A university professor who focuses on political stats.

VoteView 2007
Obama, #10 liberal
McCain, #8 conservative

VoteView 2006
Obama, #20 liberal
Obama, #3 conservative

Of course, Glenn points to the one source that shows them about the same (VoteView) and I pointed to the one that show Obama as the #1 liberal (NationalJournal).

I think most of the results agree with the interpretation that Obama is on the far left side of the Democratic party while McCain is on the moderate side of the Republican party. There are other indicators, of course.

Blue Devil Knight said...

Oh, I forgot another policy issue important to me:
7. Gay couples should be able to sign into a contract with one another that gives them the same rights as married heterosexual couples. Because marriage is a legal institution, it should be a secular institution.

Obama is moderate on this issue, but he is better than McCain. He at least believes in civil unions. Palin.

Blue Devil Knight said...

My Palin comment I somehow cut off.

I was going to say Palin is the least moderate on the issue of gay rights, and just about every other issue we could find. E.g., against abortion even when a woman is raped.

I agree that McCain is too old, and to pick extremist newbie Palin when the actuarial facts don't look good for him is irresponsible. Politically very smart, but irresponsible.

They both agree on Guantanamo at least. At worst, the next president will be better than Bush, unless McCain wins and dies, leaving Palin in his place. In that case, our country is fucked because she is even more extreme than Bush.

chesstiger said...

Blue Devil Knight said...

In 2004 the important issue was who you'd rather have a beer with at the local barbeque joint. Now the important issue is who is less patriotic.

What sacrifices have Barrack Obama made for our country? Why should we believe Obama even gives a damn about this country?

For those reading from another country, debates about "who is more Patriotic" are unfortunately somewhat common during election season. They are always started by conservatives.

The topic also comes up quite often in the book 1984.

Strange coincidence.

Bringing up this topic was effective in the 60s and early 70s, before people realized that patriotism and progressive values are compatible. This old chestnut has been resuscitated this election cycle.

Now that it's clear what I think about this topic, to pretend that it was a reasonable good-faith question I'll answer it.

Obama has devoted his life to improving the country, to serving the public. He started locally, in community service helping people who lost their jobs after a steel plant closed in Chicago. After law school he could easily have made seven figures as a corporate lawyer. Instead he opted to work more closely with his community as a civil rights lawyer. That's a sacrifice too.

He percolated up through the system starting at the local level. He didn't start his political career in Washington like McCain.

Does all this mean Obama obviously loves the United States much more than McCain? Does it imply that McCain would sell Joe America into slavery to buy a drill bit to kill seals in Alaska?

Perhaps. That's an important debate for us to have, more important than discussing Iraq, the economy, or other of these "issues" that boring policy wonks keep bringing up as if they were relevant for the election.

likesforests said...

chesstiger - An excellent example of liberal media bias. No wonder the Rasmussen poll shows that 51% believe the media is out to attack Sarah Palin and only 5% believe they want to help her.

But seriously, what nonsense! You asked me where I got the statistic that Obama is on the left-wing of the Democratic party while McCain is on the moderate side of the Republican party and I provided three reputable sources and even a discussion of their validity. And you reply with a liberal sketch on Comedy Central.

If that's how you form your opinions on American politics then there is not much more to say. I take our elections seriously enough to donate my money, time, and become informed by reading the candidates' histories, websites, and books. I also watch speeches and try to seek out analysis by objective sources. I hope you take the future of your own country more seriously and you do not dig too much into American politics only because it's not your nation.

Blue Devil Knight said...

Note I want to retract a stupid phrase I used. I said I think that we should "roll back the Bush tax cuts on the wealthy." Of course this is a euphemism for raising taxes on the wealthy. I think it is actually an unusually adept framing of the tax raise to describe it as rolling back tax cuts (and from some perspective it is true, but then you could say Bush cut the taxes that Clinton raised on the wealthy, and you get a regress to Roosevelt or whatever).

OK I'll stop posting here. I think the policy differences are clear, and people can decide two things: a) Who do they like better on policy.
b) Does a matter?

Personally I hate discussing personal issues like whose daughter is pregnant or who might have falsely admitted to commiting war crimes in Vietnam or how many houses someone owns or what someone's pastor thinks or whether someone's work helping unemployed steel workers should be mocked.

chesstiger said...


maybe i had to add by that link that this was why i find all this conventions and other politic election speeches and such are so blablabla to foreigners. I even wonder if it's not better to just have two debates (between VPs and President candidates) and donate all that other money to charities or so.

Now its all show and kitch and definetly alianeted people from the way to vote.

By the way, i hear the so called key states are the one who decide who will be in the white house. Strange, i thought people nationwide went to the voting bureau. Why are the votes in those key states more important then other votes??? A vote is a vote, not?

likesforests said...

"I even wonder if it's not better to just have two debates (between VPs and President candidates) and donate all that other money to charities or so."

I agree! In McCain's home state political candidates have a fixed amount of money to campaign with.

For national elections, McCain tried to pass a campaign finance reform bill in 1996, 1998, and 1999. In 2002 he succeeded when the McCain-Feingold Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act finally became law (another example of reaching across the aisle to find a middle ground with democrats). I wish it went alot further... of course one has to make compromises to get 2 parties and 100 senators to agree.

Obama and McCain both said they would cap the amount of money they would raise at a certain amount. But when it became clear Obama could raise more he backed out of the agreement. (McCain said this reflects badly on Obama's character; Liberals retort McCain would've done the same if he thought he could raise more.)

"By the way, i hear the so called key states are the one who decide who will be in the white house."

Yes and no. The electoral votes in most states are "winning takes all". In other words, if CA is won by the democrats 51-49 or 75-25 it doesn't matter... all votes go to Obama (many voters, including me, are frustrated that our vote will ultimately have no meaning). So donating to his campaign and helping to raise awareness are the only ways I can help him.

At the moment McCain is beating Obama by 4% in the latest national poll (woohoo!), but he's 8 electoral votes behind (dagnabbit!).

Realistically, some states will always vote Democrat and some will always vote Republican. So the battle for voters is waged primarily on the "swing" states that might vote for either candidate.

Blue Devil Knight said...

McCain is great on campaign finance, and Obama backing out on that was indeed bad.

I should know better than to ever say I'll stop posting on a thread, especially a heated discussion of politics, religion, or philosophy.

chesstiger said...

"winning takes all"

What a ludicrious system. So when the voters go 51% x and 49% y then 100% goes to x??? Geeze, no wonder people dont go to vote with such rules. It's putting 49% in the dark so to say.

So maybe the people of america have to ask for a change of voting system. To make each person his or vote have the same weight then the next. But maybe that is only possible if voting is made mandatory by law and not like the current system voluntary (although one has to register him- or herself as a voter which i find a stupid rule).

Tommyg said...


I have long thought that the electoral voting system has become passe. The found fathers created it in a much different time and place, but it has outgrown it's relevance and effectiveness. We should switch to a pure voting system.

However, I do disagree with you when you say it is stupid for voters to register. Voting is a right and a privilege. Registering to vote helps to maintain the integrity of the system. If no one had to register, voting day would be madness when trying to figure out if someone is eligible to vote or not. Registering to vote also ensures that people vote in the correct districts which is important with regards to local government.

Have a good one!

chesstiger said...

Have americains not to register at the town, village, ... they live in? So it must be easy to have lists per town, village (in alphabetical order) if they may vote or not.

Anonymous said...

obviously, anyone who cares to look at the issues knows that mccain is far far away from bush, and always was. as a matter of fact, john mccain has been bushe's biggest enemy in congress. everyone who actually pays attention to politics and what's going on in congress knows. the problem with obama fans is that they're mostly young, college kids, who are too busy getting drunk at their frat parties to pay attention to anything. politics is boring to most of them, and now they're out there kind of like rebels without a cause - sitting at home and posting on blogs and cursing people out. some of them are getting paid for it by obama campaign, so please, don't pay attention to this mccain=bush, they don't have a clue.

liquideggproduct said...

Sarah Palin is far hotter than Joe Biden.

The Democrats need better strategists IMO.

(Actually, seriously they do. This is the second election that's been handed to them on a platter and they can't get it together.)

Blue Devil Knight said...

anon: I have been to an Obama campaign. Not a lot of college-age kids. Lots of excited white-haired crackers, black people (again, older), and a smattering of others.

The difference between the candidates is clear. Until the debates, we're gonna have a lot of stupid blah blah attack blah she said, he said crap (except perhaps tomorrow when they appear together at Ground Zero).

Anonymous said...

Barack Obama says that John McCain and Sarah Palin are lying about their records when dubbing themselves as the "original mavericks" who would stand up for hard-pressed voters.

Fine, Obama, you want to back that up?

Let's start with John McCain, who has a 100% approval rating on pork-barrel spending for the 2007 legislative season, according to Citizens against government waste. His lifetime score is 88%. What this basically means is that in 2007, John McCain voted with the taxpayers 100% of the time. This means that over his years in the Senate, John McCain voted with the taxpayers 88 out of every 100 votes. And when I say "with the taxpayers" I essentially mean he voted in a way that would allow taxpayers to keep their money, rather than spend it on frivolous government pork projects.

Just in case you weren't aware, Mr. Obama ... you scored a 10% rating in 2007 and an 18% lifetime rating. Oh and your running mate, Joe Biden, he actually managed to score a 0% rating in 2007. These really seem like a pair of guys that are trying to create change in Washington. These really look like the people who are looking out for you, the taxpayers.

But then it is John McCain and Sarah Palin who are lying.

When it comes to Sarah Palin, we've been through the specifics on this Bridge to Nowhere crap. In fact, the Democrat Party in Alaska acknowledges that it was Sarah Palin who finally scrapped the bridge. That website, by the way, disappeared for a while, until pressured to re-post the page (which they did, only at a different address). But just as a little side note ... guess who DID vote for the Bridge to Nowhere. Barack Obama and Joe Biden. Why doesn't the media bring THAT to your attention. Even when given a second chance to shift the funds to Katrina relief programs, Obama and Biden still voted for the Bridge to Nowhere. While John McCain did not end up voting on the amendment, he is on record opposing the earmark.

Anonymous said...

When it comes to Sarah Palin's record of reform ... let's just look at earmarks, since this is something that Palin and her Senate opponents have in common. Before Sarah Palin's time as governor, the state of Alaska used to request over 100 earmarks each year to be secured by Alaska's congressional delegation. When it came time for Sarah Palin to request her earmarks for the first time as governor ... she slashed that number by half, requesting 54 earmarks. The next year, Palin cut that number AGAIN down to just 31 earmarks. Of those 31 earmarks, 27 of these are continuous or were previously appropriated. When Palin entered the governor's office, the total amount of quests averaged $550 million a year. That number has been reduced to less than $200 million now that Palin is in office. And it would only continue to decline. One of Palin's stated goals as Governor is to ask Congress for no more than a dozen earmarks for her state. On top of all that, Palin insisted that each earmark requested by the state of Alaska demonstrate an important federal purpose and public support. Whenever possible, Palin wants to have earmarks only if they can be matched by state or local budgets. And her administration is currently re-examining previous decisions on transportation earmarks ... the Alaska Department of Transportation is conducting an audit to determine the status of every single one of its recent earmarks.

Let's go ahead and take a look at Barack Obama's earmarks in the Senate. In just three years, Barack Obama has requested over 300 earmark projects totaling $740 million. For the 2008 fiscal year alone, Obama requested 112 earmarks. Sarah Palin? 31.
here is a link to get all the statistics, just in case you obamaniacs actually cared about the facts :

RT Solo said...

I would rather have had a GOP nominee that was a little closer to its conservative roots, but Mccain is definitely a better choice than the alternative of Obama.

I am a little worried, however, about his stance on illegal immigration and "amnesty".

RT Solo said...

Wow, after reading these posts I am astonished at what a Pandora's Box you've opened! I applaud your stance and the reasoning behind it. Though I don't feel like sitting here and putting down a few paragraphs worth of arguments for conservative views, you can rest assured that I do have them and am pulling for you in your "debate" with more liberal minded chess enthusiasts.

Keep it up.

P.S. I used to listen to a lot of Hannity, Limbaugh, Larson, etc. but have tuned in less and less since Mccain clinched the nomination because he was definitely not my favorite candidate. Although his religion gave me pause, I liked the more conservative positions of Romney. I like more Libertarian platforms that include dramatically reducing the government's size and influence on our lives.

RT Solo said...

Healthcare is available for those who can't afford it...we have a wealth of programs that people can and do take advantage of. Medicaid (Medi-cal here in california) make up the vast majority of the patient's we see in the Emergency Room and our Promtcare facilities at which I currently work. Also a large part of our patients have medicare as well. Not just old people, but people who are "disabled" (though they have no apparent medical problems).

Conservatives have always leaned more toward lower taxes because they believe the government shouldn't require so much of our money. If you really want the government to pay for our healthcare and our retirement and our housing and everything else we ever need during our lives, then sure you should vote liberal and increase taxes. But if you don't think that the government should be spending OUR money in such a reckless way, then it might not be such a great idea.

I personally believe our government's only responsibility should be to protect its citizens from other countries, and from each other. Besides that it seems like people are happiest when they accomplish things themselves, rather than being spoon-fed from "cradle to grave".

I've seen so many abuses of our government's handout programs like welfare and medicaid etc etc that I have lost all confidence in the government's ability to effectively and efficiently run any social program. So I am really not very excited at the prospect of them taking over the healthcare system. Especially since my field of work is going to be in healthcare.

I think history has shown that the private sector has more motivation and resources to get things done correctly. Human ingenuity is an amazing thing that shouldn't be stifled by government intervention with what they see as "best for us." I'll make my own mind up as to what is best for me, and my family.

When someone is to reap the reward for hard work, they work harder. When the government just allots people their "fair share" we lose the incentive to work hard. There was a time when the church took care of the needy. When families took care of their elders. People existed long before governments did.

Some people would even say that people are much happier simply existing than having their lives forever guided and restricted by governments. An instructor of mine is currently reading the book "three cups of tea" and we all got into a discussion about how some of the simple farming communities around the world are filled with such content, happy people. Yet we, with our mcdonalds and high speed internet and overly expensive houses and cars, are some of the most depressed people in history.

It seems like the degradation of society is directly linked with more liberal beliefs and implimentations of said beliefs. Think of the world pre and post 1950's. Think about society in the 40's or 50's when children weren't such little brats because they knew mom or dad wouldn't hesitate to tan that hide if they misbehaved or were rude to their elders. Nowadays kids are packing heat! A teacher's biggest problem used to be gum chewing, cutting in line, not paying attention. Now it's school shootings, teen pregnancies, drugs, etc. Seems like the new-age social philosophies haven't had the desired effect on society that the hippies hoped for. And this comes from one who used to smoke a lot of weed and would love to live in harmony with nature as much as possible. I have some hippyish beliefs, but not to the point of ignoring my common sense. Not to the point that I am blind to what liberal ideology has created.

What scares me is the recent try of rogue california liberal judges to place a large portion of homeschooling parents in violation of the law and in jeopardy of having legal action taken against them as criminals simply because they would rather teach their own children instead of letting a government school do the job. I don't blame them. Since when does the government get to tell you how to raise your children? They must go to this school, they must not be subject to corporal punishment, we must teach them how to put a condom on a banana during the first week of kindergarten, we must have children's books that include kids with two dads, and two moms, so that no one feels alienated. You must not only tolerate every lifestyle choice, but you must outwardly support those lifestyles. You must teach your children that everything that we say is ok is ok.

Obviously I cannot pull myself away from this topic, even as I'm sitting here at work.

I'm going to stop now, seriously.

RT Solo said...

P.s.s. I am not sure how anyone can argue that Obama is an extreme leftist since his own party and record do not deny it.

Also, how can anyone think Mccain is conservative when he's leans so much to the left that he's already alienated a large portion of the Republican's conservative base! Many Republicans hate Mccain because they think he's far too liberal.

So I'm not sure why Democrats wouldn't be happy that he's the republican nominee...he's a lot closer to their views than Romney would have been.

RT Solo said...

P.s.s.s. You increase taxes on the rich, the rich own all our big corporations and businesses, the rich have less money to pay their millions and millions of employees, the rich have to lay off employees they can't afford, the rich have to offer less and less desirable benefits packages, their millions of employees now have shitty medical benefits and shitty retirement packages.

There's an article I've read that is a really cool illustration about how the small richest portion of the society pays the vast majority of our taxes, and if we keep hitting them with huge taxes to fund our pet projects, they might just go somewhere else to make money. Then we'll be screwed because the other 90 percent of society can't afford to pay even half the taxes we put on the rich.

Google "ten men went to dinner tax" or just go to a site that has the story like
which I just now found on google.

I think I had something else to say but I was talking to a co-worker and lost my train of thought.

Ummm...anything else I'd like to say? Well, earmarks suck ass and need to be eliminated. Nancy Pelosi is out of her FREAKING MIND! George Bush is probably a lot kinder and more intelligent man than most people give him credit for.

The new Harold and Kumar movie is freaking hilarious.

BudMan said...

Marxism, Communism, Socialism, Collectivism, Statism - call it what you'd like. The history of our 20th century stands as a monument to its failure. And not just failure: disaster and calamity of unimaginable proportions. Those who do not learn the lessons of history (liberals, are you listening?) are condemned to relive it...must the rest of us relive it, too?

Blue Devil Knight said...

I have worked in a children's hospital and seen the depressing lists of children waiting for treatment when money comes in from donations. Health care is not available for everyone. If it was, this would not be an issue. Admittedly, Bush did improve this a little, especially for kids, but we have a far way to go before health care is no longer looked at as a privilege in this country. We need to catch

Think of the world pre and post 1950's. Think about society in the 40's or 50's when children weren't such little brats because they knew mom or dad wouldn't hesitate to tan that hide if they misbehaved or were rude to their elders.

And blacks were in their place and couldn't eat with the whites, women weren't allowed in the best universities, you could get fired for your job for being suspected of being sympathetic to communist ideas. The liberals really screwed things up.

Anonymous said...


It's no fair crediting liberals (in the vernacular sense) for the undeniable civils rights progress we've made in this country. The current meanings of "liberal" and "conservative" (and in a similar way, "Democrat" and "Republican") took shape in the 60's -- think of Lyndon Johnson and Barry Goldwater, among others. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 was advanced by JFK, who was certainly no "liberal" (again, the the current sense), and it was passed by Republicans in Congress by greater percentages than Democrats. Lincoln, who freed the slaves, was a Republican. But it would be silly to argue that today's Democrats would advocate a return to slavery. Things have changed.

Marx and Engels et al. were no doubt really bright guys who had honorable intentions. Their ideas were put to the test throughout the world, and they failed catastrophically. Why lead the U.S. down that same road to hell?

Anonymous said...

goodbye from this rss reader.

i liked your blog but don't want politics in my chess.

likesforests said...

"goodbye from this rss reader."

I expected as much. I will say what I believe despite the cost. In 158 posts I have written two non-chess posts: 1 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and 1 for John McCain for President. If that's too much 'noise' for you then good riddance and don't let the door hit you on the way out.

Better hurry--in December I plan to write about volunteering at the local homeless shelter so more noise is coming. Some will accept me and my blog for what they are and some will not. Asi es la vida... C'est la vie. :)

RT Solo said...

BDK I didn't say it was perfect in that era, there are always problems. But wouldn't you agree that the...ummm...average "quality" of people in our society was a lot higher than it is now? Even if you're thinking on a purely aesthetic level, you didn't see as many stinky bathrobe-wearers scratching their meth-sores while dragging their dirty kids with uncombed hair through the grocery store.

You could afford a nice house with the income of just one parent. Nowadays it's almost essential for both parents to work thus eliminating our ability to raise our own children.

I don't think it's fair for you to include civil rights problems as a reason you would not rather go back to a nicer society. I would obviously consider civil rights advances as a huge gain for our society. But it seems as if you are characterizing Republicans/conservatives as people who are somehow against women's rights and minority rights. That's silly.

Anyway...I don't know much about politics or platforms, I just know what I see and what I believe. I also like discussing these type of things with those who hold opposing views. I hope no one gets too heated about the discussion. Have a good day, all.

mcdonal3 said...

You blame Obama for not being captured in a war, and tortured, and not choosing to stay as a war prisoner in Vietnam.

Obama has also never turned 70, doesn't know a damn thing about turning 70, and has absolutely no experience when it comes to the issue of being over 70 years old.

So who are you going to trust when it comes to the question of being over 70?

Damn right!
McCain. Over 70.