mm502: Overwhelmed

September 24, 2008
© Martin Applegate |

© Martin Applegate |

Just don’t know where to start.

The news is bleak, nearly everywhere one cares to look.

Somehow, John McCain is still taken seriously, even as he escalates the stunts.

First, adopt wholeheartedly with relish the Karl Rove/Swift Boat outrageous Big Lie protocol that obliterated the last nice guy to try to win the White House.

Next, kowtow to the restive Christian wingnuts by selecting for his running mate wingnut magna, herself, Sarah Palin.

Now, clothe his attempt at abject ducking of the first debate in the name of somehow intervening in Congress’s Wall Street bailout negotiations. Senator “Fundamentally Sound” McCain. Whose economic advisor, the next Secretary of the Treasury should this country wake up to a nightmare on Nov. 5 is Phil “Stop Whining” Gramm. Yeah, I’m certain you can guys can be of assistance.

If it wasn’t so serious, it would be laughable.

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mm427: Obama’s restless summer

July 2, 2008

MUDGE’s Musings

Barack Obama, the black Will Smith, has been, is and will be in the news permanently, or at least until Nov. 5, 2008 should John McCain’s wet dream (of somehow overcoming the horrendous legacy of his good buddy, George III) become reality.

So there’s no shortage of worthwhile reading on all things Obama. Here are four of the most intriguing.

1) Fundraising expertise

David Brooks has spent some useful time poring over the campaign finance statements.


Obama’s Money Class

Op-Ed Columnist | By DAVID BROOKS | Published: July 1, 2008

Barack Obama sells the Democratic Party short. He talks about his fund-raising success as if his donors were part of a spontaneous movement of small-money enthusiasts who cohered around himself. In fact, Democrats have spent years building their donor network. Obama’s fund-raising base is bigger than John Kerry’s, Howard Dean’s and Al Gore’s, but it’s not different.

As in other recent campaigns, lawyers account for the biggest chunk of Democratic donations. They have donated about $18 million to Obama, compared with about $5 million to John McCain, according to data released on June 2 and available at

People who work at securities and investment companies have given Obama about $8 million, compared with $4.5 for McCain. People who work in communications and electronics have given Obama about $10 million, compared with $2 million for McCain. Professors and other people who work in education have given Obama roughly $7 million, compared with $700,000 for McCain.

So, Senator Obama, as has every presidential candidate in history, a rhetoric/reality gap.

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mm250: Stay home, Mike?

January 11, 2008

MUDGE’S Musings

The continuing saga of Michael Bloomberg, mayor of New York City, and his feinting and hinting about a presidential campaign hit the front page of NYTimes Friday.

One measurement that this story has legs is its regular appearance since mid-June in this nanocorner of the ‘Sphere©.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg of NYC for U.S. President 2008

mm024: Bloomberg?
mm038.1: Jews Sorta Like Bloomberg Even Though…
mm051: Bloomberg’s Money, Visibility…
mm054: Chicago Tribune news: An Idea for Bloomberg
mm057: Bloomberg for President?
mm058: What Kind of President would Michael Bloomberg?
mm064: How to take down plutocrat Michael Bloomberg…
mm066: Michael Bloomberg’s Knightly Ambitions
mm069: The Votes Are In for New York’s Mayor Mike
mm086: Bloomberg Takes School Plan… to Midwest
mm110: Grading Mayoral Control
mm117: The cure for the Electoral College is worse…
mm208: Overdue a Bloomberg post
mm238: Bloomberg’s candidacy — closer to real?
mm248: Political Potpourri

Now Mayor Bloomberg’s newspaper of record broadcasts a discouraging word. Perhaps the voting public, especially those voters who are his constituents in New York, are becoming a bit testy over his aforementioned feinting and hinting.

The peg for today’s story was Bloomberg’s trip to Oklahoma City this week, where bunches of former (I almost said politician, but my experience is that there’s no such thing as a former politician. Politician, or deceased politician are the two varieties) elected officials gathered to assess the terrain: Is the U.S. ready for a serious third political party, and is Michael Bloomberg the man to become its presidential candidate?

The Times indicates that people might have begun to classify Bloomberg with Fred Thompson, who took all summer to decide to run (or merely took a nap all summer?). We can see how Thompson is faring.

Couldn’t resist running the photograph that accompanied the on-line version of the story.


The caption is in MUDGE’s favorite type, 2-point Myopia, so we’ll tell you the woman in white at his right is Diana Taylor, his companion, and Silda Wall Spitzer, wife of New York Governor Eliot Spitzer is at his left.


Calls Grow for Bloomberg to Make Up His Mind


Published: January 11, 2008

Nearly every day a tiny new development trickles out from the stealth presidential campaign of Michael R. Bloomberg, the billionaire mayor of New York.

He has talked with Chuck Hagel and Sam Nunn, potential running mates. He has delivered a tart critique of the presidential field. He is conducting intricate polling to test his appeal in all 50 states.

Mr. Bloomberg’s dalliance with the idea of running for president has stretched on and on, with his enthusiastic approval despite the public denials. But even before actually entering the contest, Mr. Bloomberg may have already risked losing something: people’s patience.

So here’s why this story continues to intrigue:

To be sure, there is little indication that ordinary voters around the country have given much thought to a Bloomberg candidacy, especially given the dramatic primary races in the two major parties. But his enormous wealth and willingness to spend it make him someone who cannot be ignored within the political world.

But, all may not be well at home, while Mayor Mike tours the world, and Oklahoma.

[Please click the link below for the complete article — but then please come on back!]

Calls Grow for Bloomberg to Make Up His Mind – New York Times

Interesting also the news that Unity08, a high profile interest group working nationwide toward a viable third party, written about here several times until we became concerned about their motives, is cutting back its activities in that direction.

One dirty tricks theory of U.S. politics says that third party candidates cause so much mischief to Democratic candidates (think Ralph Nader) that Karl Rove and his ilk must be the éminence grise behind them.

In that light, maybe Mike should stay home?

It’s it for now. Thanks,


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