Saturday, November 3, 2012

News Nuggets 1096

DAYLEE PICTURE: Emperor penguins in Antarctica.  From National Geographic.

Wondering why people so overwhelmingly approve of Obama's handling of the hurricane?  Check out this video of him touring a devastated marina.   

The U.S. Navy is Arming Drone Boats (John Reed) from Foreign Policy Magazine
"While the U.S. Air Force's drones have been firing all sorts of air-to-surface missiles and bombs for roughly a decade now, the Navy took a big step toward getting in on the action last Friday when it launched six Israeli-made Spike missiles from an unmanned 36-foot motorboat. The Navy pretty much admits that the project -- called the unmanned surface vehicle precision engagement module (USV PEM) -- is aimed at defeating threats that are straight out of Iran's war plans for the Persian Gulf region."

Coming to America: China Wants to Buy its Way Onto Your TV Screen. Will it Work? from Foreign Policy Magazine
Answer: No.
""The idea is for this to be not a Chinese mouthpiece, not a Chinese propaganda tool, but a global channel produced with a Chinese flair.'" Nearly a year later, that vision is coming into focus, and it offers a curious indication of China's search for soft power. Despite the promise of wider editorial latitude, CCTV America's coverage of China is largely scrubbed of controversy and upbeat in tone, with a heavy emphasis on business and cultural stories in places where Beijing hopes to gain influence."

Nine 2012 Electoral College Predictions Have Obama Ahead from the Denver Post
"With the clock ticking down to Election Day, most political prognosticators see President Obama winning re-election, though his Electoral College count varies from 281 — just 11 votes over the 270 needed to win — to 332, below his 2008 win but still a healthy margin."

The Long Con: Mail-Order Conservatism (Rick Perlstein) from The Baffler 
A longread look at recent GOP history -- with a clear partisan slant.  
"... both the rank-and-file voters and the governing elites of a major American political party chose as their standardbearer a pathological liar. What does that reveal about them? A look inside the deep tangle of political fictions and financial scams that make up movement conservatism."

Paul Krugman's comment on Perlstein's analysis:
Karl Rove’s Mission Accomplished (Paul Krugman) from the New York Times 
"The estimable Rick Perlstein has a fascinating essay about the seamless continuum from direct-mail marketing scams to direct-mail right-wing fundraising, and from there to the whole character of modern movement conservatism. ... I suspect that his analysis explains one of the great mysteries of 2012: the failure of the great Rove/Citizens United juggernaut to materialize."

The Case for Obama: Why He Is a Great President. Yes, Great. (Jonathan Chait) from New York Magazine
Yes -- a great president!
"... unlike so many of his supporters, I never experienced a kind of emotional response to his candidacy. I never felt his election would change everything about American politics or government, that it would lead us out of the darkness. Nothing Obama did or said ever made me well up with tears. ...  For anybody who voted for Obama in 2008 and had even the vaguest sense of his platform, the notion that he has fallen short of some plausible performance threshold seems to me unfathomable. Obama’s résumé of accomplishments is broad and deep, running the gamut from economic to social to foreign policy."

Chait's companion piece:
The Case Against Romney: At Heart, He’s a Delusional One-Percenter (Jonathan Chait) from the New York Magazine
"Undoubtedly, what Romney believes in above all is himself. As a friend of his told Politico last month, at a moment when his campaign appeared hopeless, Romney approaches politics like a business deal: “Just do and say what you need to do to get the deal done, and then when it’s done, do what you know actually needs to be done to make the company a success.” ... He meant this not in the spirit of exposing Romney’s fraudulence, but in an elegiac way — a lament for a great man who would do good if only given a chance. "

Democrats Crushing Republicans on Sporadic Fla Voters in Early Voting from the Tampa Bay Times
"A trusted Democratic operative sent us some data on the early and absentee ballot vote in Florida so far to make the point that Barack Obama is crushing Mitt Romney when it comes to banking the votes of sporadic and infrequent voters before election day"

Pollsters Often Swing And Miss On The Growing Latino Vote from Talking Points Memo
"Sometimes that means that they simply underrepresented Latino voters, which made up roughly 9 to 10 percent of the total 2008 electorate. ... In a conference call with reporters, Barreto said any of these could potentially lead to big mistakes in the polls."

Mitt Romney’s Campaign Insults Voters from the Editorial Board of the Washington Post
"THROUGH ALL THE flip-flops, there has been one consistency in the campaign of Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney: a contempt for the electorate."

Is Romney Unraveling? (Charles Blow) from the New York Times
"According to the latest polls, the most likely outcome of Tuesday’s election is that Romney will lose. ... How is Romney losing it? Let us count the ways:"

Mitt Romney’s Delusions of Victory (Matt Latimer) from the Daily Beast 
From a conservative pundit.
"Sorry Mitt, the electoral map shows it’s all over but the shouting. Ex-Bush aide Matt Latimer on what the GOP needs to do to rebuild."

R.I.P., Mitt Romney (Robert Shrum) from the Daily Beast
"Mitt made multiple mistakes that will lead to his defeat on Tuesday. Some of them date all the way back to 2008."

On Wis. Campus, Obama Support Bubbles Below Surface (Scott Conroy) from Real Clear Politics
"At first glance, the apparent dearth of campaign-related activity would be deeply concerning to the re-election hopes of Barack Obama. The president is counting on a robust turnout in this liberal college town to help propel him to victory in a state that increasingly appears critical to both his and Mitt Romney’s electoral calculus. (Obama has a five-point lead in the RCP Average.) But a closer looked revealed activity happening in less visible ways."

1.  Ryan Camp Leaks Post-election Plans that Don’t Involve Being VP (John Aravosis) from Americablog
"... all of Ryan’s confidants are talking to the AP about all of Ryan’s options post-loss, which is something you wouldn’t do if you thought he had a chance at winning. It’s not just a matter of jinxing things, you would not want to assist any article, five days before the election, that suggest he might lose. You only do that if you think he’s going to lose."

2.  Gingrich Email: Obama’s Gonna Win from Americablog
"Yesterday, an email was sent out to the Gingrich email list informing people that Obama was going to win and that it was time to start looking at 2016."

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