hopperbach


Sarah’s back

Many on the right who tuned into last night’s debate with white-knuckled dread are no doubt breathing a sigh of relief today. Sarah did an excellent job. From the sound of things it appears that the McCain campaign has finally decided to heed the advice of pundits and allow Sarah to be Sarah. We saw a return of the lively, down-to-earth hockey mom we remembered at the convention. While the usual McCain talking points were employed, she seemed to have a lot more freedom to be herself and phrase the answers in her own way.

Both candidates tried to appeal to the middle-class throughout the debate but Sarah, coming from a middle-class background herself, made a more genuine connection. In fact, in contrast to Biden she seldom even used the phrase “middle class” — sending the subtle message that she was one of them and didn’t have to make a distinction like her opponent.

When the focus turned to foreign policy, Biden went into full Senate speech mode and seemed to revel in his knowledge of one of his favorite subjects. But perhaps ol’ Joe was a bit too cocky in assuming he would win this segment of the debate.  Immediately after he finished presenting an impressively worded outline of Obama’s timetable for pulling out of Iraq, Palin rared back and got in the debate’s biggest zinger:

Your plan is a white flag of surrender in Iraq and that is not what our troops need to hear today, that’s for sure. And it’s not what our nation needs to be able to count on. You guys opposed the surge. The surge worked…

Pwned! And Joe knew it, baby. The passion in Sarah’s voice was evident here and Biden almost looked like a scolded schoolboy as she lit into him. How do you like the taste of barracuda, Joe.

Also there were some notable nods to the Gipper last night. Palin quoted Reagan’s “shining city on a hill” line and repeatedly railed on high taxes and our increasingly intrusive government.  She even managed to slip in a famous Reagan retort from his debate with Jimmy Carter:

“Say it ain’t so, Joe. There you go again pointing backwards again.”

Sarah was in great form here and it was a joy to watch.

In her closing argument she invoked yet another moving quote from Ronaldus Magnus:

Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it on to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children what it was once like in the United States when men were free.

Amazing words from an amazing man. God, I miss that guy. Very wise of Sarah to invoke him here.

So with only a couple of exceptions (most notably her populist stance on the “greed” of Wall Street) Sarah’s message was notably conservative in tone. Overall she appeared poised, confident and intelligent.  Even some of the more liberal pundits have had to admit [snort! spit!] that she carried herself very well last night.  Suffice to say she has now eased a lot of the doubts that were starting to surface on the right in recent weeks.

As for me… I never doubted her for a moment. Sarah has had to hit the ground running and learn a lot in a very short time. But from the beginning I’ve seen in her the raw material for true greatness. I think she’s going to adapt quickly and surprise everyone before it’s all over.

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The brat attack
September 19, 08, 11:27 am
Filed under: campaign, election, elections, Mike Kernell, politics, Sarah Palin | Tags: , ,

Looks like we have a lead in the case of Sarah Palin’s hacked email account.  Authorities apparently are investigating a student at the University of Tennessee who also happens to be the son of a Democratic state representative.

NASHVILLE – State Rep. Mike Kernell said today that he was aware of Internet rumors about his son being the subject of speculation that he accessed the personal e-mail of vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin.

Asked whether he or his son, a student at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville, had been contacted by authorities investigating the break-in of Palin’s account, he responded:

“Me, no.”

As far as his 20-year-old son, David, he said: “I can’t say. That doesn’t mean he has or hasn’t (been contacted by investigators).”

Kernell, D-Memphis, cited the father-son relationship.

He said he had talked to his son today, but that he talks to his son regularly.

He declined further comment.

Let me first emphasize that nobody has been accused here. It might be this particular boy… or it might not. This was based on a tip and we don’t yet know how it will pan out.

But we do know a few things about the hacker so far:

  1. Likely a Democrat
  2. Computer savvy
  3. Displays a cocky assurance that he or she is smarter than the rest of the world

In short…  college kid. If not this boy then I’ll bet you a chocolate bunny authorities will be tracing this to a university somewhere.

Liberals have actually been fun to watch since Sarah Palin came upon the scene. I mean a LOT of fun. They are bitter, folks. Fuming, spitting, in-your-face kind of bitter. Laughing derisively but a little TOO hard bitter. They thought they had this one in the bag. Sarah has given the anthill a swift kick and livid ants are now streaming out in all directions. And the younger of the ants can go a little nuts.

And so now almost on a daily basis we are witnessing childish stunts like the one pulled by this computer hacker. And we’ll keep seeing them in the weeks ahead.

Let me pose a question… do you think they would be doing this to Romney? If you said “hell no” you get another bunny (hope you’re not diabetic). Liberals WANTED a Mitt Romney on the Republican ticket. McCain wouldn’t even be in the headlines today if he had chosen Romney.  Or ANYONE other than Sarah Palin for that matter. This woman has them in fits.

So don’t get upset at all the ambushes and temper tantrums, friends. It’s a good omen. What it means is that for the first time in the election we are actually a threat.  Just sit back and enjoy the show…. these brats are an excitable bunch and they can get pretty damn creative.

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Update — 9/22:  Warrant served on 20-year old David Kernell at his college residence. The FBI has been investigating the user logs of a proxy service called Ctunnel.com which is designed to allow a user to surf the web anonomously… provided that user is not some DWEEB who decides to break into the Yahoo account of an Alaska governor. Being a brat can be very costly sometimes. Story below:

Warrant Served on Residence of College Student in Palin E-Mail Hack



A taxing philosophy
September 18, 08, 3:44 pm
Filed under: campaign, electioins, Joe Biden, politics, taxes | Tags: , ,

Joe Biden has been kind of in the sidelines of late… which is a shame because the man can be very entertaining when he opens his mouth. Here’s what he had to say about taxes this morning:

“We want to take money and put it back in the pocket of middle-class people,” Biden said in an interview on ABC’s “Good Morning America.”

I highlighted these two phrases because they so aptly reveal the Democratic Party mindset. When he says “take money” he dosn’t mean take it from the overflowing coffers at Capitol Hill. He means taking just a little more from those whom he and his colleages have deemed to be the overpriveledged.

Biden could just have easily put it this way:

‘From each according to his ability, to each according to his need’

It’s called ‘redistribution of wealth’… and Karl Marx thought of it a long time before the Dems ever adopted it as their official tax platform.

But Biden’s quote is a great one because it illustrates the classic Democratic class-envy thinking that so energizes their voter-base.  Three things are implied here:

  1. The upper-class has more than they need
  2. They took much of their money from the pockets of the middle-class
  3. Congress has the right to confiscate that “stolen” money and “put it back” with it’s rightful owners

Here’s a better idea Joe: How about taking the money that YOU and your porky Dem pals have confiscated from the middle-class over the years and giving THAT back to them?  How much do YOU really need? Why does someone else always have to compensate whenever YOU might have to do with less?

Just wondering…

Biden has a reputation for gaffes but I don’t think that term quite fits here. His real weakness is that he tells the truth far too often. These “slip-ups” of truthfulness are labeled gaffes because it embarrasses the Democratic party to have their intentions revealed. They don’t like it when one of their own puts it in plain English. At least not during the peak of the election season when they are trying so hard to appeal to the center.

But wait… I’ve saved the best for last:

Noting that wealthier Americans would indeed pay more, Biden said: “It’s time to be patriotic … time to jump in, time to be part of the deal, time to help get America out of the rut.”

[cue “America the Beautiful”] How it must swell the hearts of those in higher tax brackets who already pay over 50% the country’s overall taxes to know that they may soon have the opportunity to serve their great country even more. Certainly this is what Thomas, Ben and the boys had in mind when they set up this representative republic of ours. Thank you for reminding us of what true patriotism is, Senator Biden.

Incidentally, I’m not angry here… I’m laughing way too hard to be angry. This is wonderful stuff.



Double your standards in one week or less

Oddly enough, in all of the excitement over Sarah Palin’s family history, the MSM seems to have missed this story about Joe Biden which appeared in the L.A. Times last Thursday:

When Joe Biden’s brother and son wanted to buy a hedge fund company two years ago, they turned for financing to a law firm that had lobbied the Delaware senator’s office on an important piece of business in Congress — and in fact had recently benefited from his vote. The firm promised James and Hunter Biden that it would invest $2 million, and quickly delivered half of it.

That arrangement eventually fell through, and the firm’s money was returned. But the investment highlighted the close ties between the Biden family and SimmonsCooper, an Illinois law firm that specializes in representing asbestos victims — a multimillion-dollar line of business that was under threat in Congress.

Oh my, this raises some questions… tsk, tsk. Did Barack Obama not vet his running mate thoroughly enough?  Was the senator abusing his power to help a family member?  And what kind of dad does this make Joe Biden?  Will he even make it to the end of the week without dropping out of the race?

If you detected a little sarcasm here, you get a chocolate bunny. These questions mirror some of the “concerns” pundits have had over Sarah Palin. Apparently a spotless family record has now become a prime qualification for political office…  if you are a Republican.

Certainly these rules didn’t seem to apply to Al Gore when his son was charged with reckless driving during the 2000 campaign. I’m surprised you folks don’t remember that — it was clearly printed on page 13b of your local newspaper and then never mentioned again. Gotta pay closer attention if a Dem is involved.

The full L.A. Times story on Biden may be found here if it hasn’t mysteriously disappeared.



Heavy “mettle” woman

I can’t quite recall a time when the MSM has gotten as agitated and panicked over a presidential running mate as they have over Sarah Palin. And why? Is she not a strong and accomplished woman? Has she not forged her own path to become the head of the largest state in the union? Does she not exemplify all of the qualities women have worked so tirelessly to cultivate over the years?

Well yes… but she’s also a conservative. She’s pro-life. She staunchly supports offshore drilling in her home state. She owns — and uses — guns. She likes to lower taxes and tackle government corruption. And so, says a leftist press, the woman must go.

Rest assured that the lib media is on the case. Their modus operendi is to relentlessly turn up the heat on Palin’s personal life until she finally bursts into tears and leaves the kitchen (a little sexist lingo there).  And I have to say, after decades of observing the political scene, never have I seen the MSM spring into such swift and ruthless action in going after a V.P. candidate and their family. Throw a sickly cow into a piranha pond and you won’t see the frenzy you are witnessing here.

Of the handful of “disturbing” revelations which have surfaced, the one bit of news that opponents seem to see as Palin’s Achilles heel is the pregnancy of her teenage daughter, Bristol. After all, how can a good mom possibly manage her daughter’s crisis and be there for her while running for the second highest office in the land? And what kind of gall must the woman have to even accept McCain’s offer under such circumstances?  Lib pundits breathlessly speculate that Palin’s family troubles may just cause her to sheepishly withdraw from the race by week’s end. Or as The Trentonian so tactfully put it in their caption to an AP photo:

Yesterday, the sexy mother said that her 17-year-old daughter is pregnant and that her mountain man hubby was busted for driving under the influence. Some think she won’t last the week as McCain’s No. 2.

Very objective journalism there Trentonian!  But as John McLaughlin would say: WROOOOONG! Sarah ain’t going nowhere.

Good God, how many ways can a liberal media underestimate a situation? I can count three right off-hand — three factors that the Obama camp and their accomplices in the press aren’t taking into account:

  1. Palin’s resilience. Sarah is well-known in Alaska as someone who never backs down from adversity. In fact, she seems to thrive on it. If her bulldog rep is true, these attacks from the left will only energize her.  Get ready for a zinger or two aimed at the press during Palin’s speech tonight.
  2. Hillary voter backlash. Many Hillary Clinton supporters are still fuming over what appeared to be a sexist media bias against the first female presidential candidate in history. Now that another woman has thrown her hat in the ring, questions about Palin’s readiness based merely upon the fact that she’s a mom will only fan the flames higher. Examples of this are already popping up in some of  the comments sections of articles and blogs about Palin. Hillary’s peeps are NOT happy, folks.
  3. General voter backlash. Most of us have known a family at some time in our lives who has had to deal with a teen daughter getting pregnant. We know how freaked out a young girl can get in this situation and how essential maintaining privacy is to her and her family. The MSM’s shameless efforts to bore down on Palin’s daughter will not play well with the public… at all.

So there you have it… yet another case of the media inadvertently helping the very person they were trying to destroy. Will they ever learn? Let’s hope not.



Nice try

Barack Obama weighed in Monday on his experience compared to that of McCain’s new running mate, Sarah Palin:

In an interview on CNN’s Anderson Cooper 360 Monday night, Obama was asked about whether his experience in the U.S. Senate dealing with weather-related situations compares to Palin’s executive experience running the state of Alaska and as the small town mayor of Wasilla, Alaska.

“My understanding is that Gov. Palin’s town, Wassilla, has I think 50 employees. We’ve got 2500 in this campaign. I think their budget is maybe 12 million dollars a year – we have a budget of about three times that just for the month,” Obama responded.

Comparing the running of a campaign to the running of a state with 670,000 residents?  Um… no. But thanks for playing.



Media mud

It’s been entertaining to watch the reaction of the liberal media over John McCain’s surprise bombshell (and I mean that on SO many levels) of choosing Sarah Palin as his running mate.  In the first place they are clearly bothered that he chose a woman — make that a Republican woman. After all, the official MSM template dictates that the first female ANYTHING in Washington HAS to be a Democrat. They being the enlightened ones who are with the times and all…

Secondly, they are resentful at being forced to turn their cameras away from the overconfident visage of the Golden One so soon after his star-studded pow-wow atop Mt. Olympus. After all, we were still supposed to be basking in the glow of history in the making last Thursday as Obama accepted the DNC nomination on the anniversary of MLK’s “I Have a Dream” speech. Today we were supposed to be reading the MSM’s poignant analysis of what this monumental event “means for America”.

Sure the media knew McCain’s introduction of a running mate was imminent. But they weren’t worried. They expected the traditional Republican cookie-cutter candidate… a Mitt Romney perhaps. They already had page two reserved for their obligatory three paragraph write-up on whoever the fuddy-duddy turned out to be.

So now the press has been thrown more than just a curve — we’re talking a Phil Niekro knuckler doing a butterfly dance around their bat. They are in absolute fits, folks… and they’re not playing nice. The same MSM who so obediently acquiesced after Barack Obama ordered them to lay off his wife and children has now embarked upon a hell-bent mission to find the dirt on anyone in the Palin clan all the way down to the family pooch.

And to the thrill of leftist pundits they believe they have uncovered some tasty morsels: Hubby had a DUI several years ago as a young man. Teen daughter is pregnant. Palin may have overstepped her authority while trying to protect her sister in a nasty custody battle. Sarah’s husband and son are (gasp) independents.

So how much of the mud will stick? From all indications not much at all. What is emerging here with the Palins is the family next door — or maybe our own.  It is actually refreshing for voters to see that Palin shares our problems and is somewhat approachable. As Politico’s Charles Mahtesian writes:

So far — and it is hard to tell what the future may hold for Palin’s unexpected national candidacy — the travails of the Palin family probably seem awfully familiar to many average Americans. It is this averageness that makes her such a politically promising running mate for John McCain — and such a dangerous opponent for Democrats. Many voters will find it easy to identify with her family’s struggles — a significant advantage in an election where the voting calculus is so unusually and intensely personal.

Agreed. These revelations may help her in an odd kind of way and will likely do little to put the brakes on what has suddenly become a very promising McCain candidacy.   The libs will kick up some dirt but what will be left when the dust clears is an intelligent, well spoken, confident, attractive, tenacious leader who is firm on her decidedly conservative convictions.

Dems and libs would like us to think they are laughing off McCain’s attempt at a checkmate. But make no mistake “Sarah Barracuda” is haunting their dreams at night. They are more than a little worried — and many of us on the right are now more than a little stoked. For the first time in the campaign we have… if I may borrow Barry’s buzzword… hope.  With Palin, we have finally broken the traditional Republican mold — at a time when things had indeed become moldy.

--Cartoon by Gary Varvel