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Flotsam and Jetsam

A surprisingly fair take on Sarah Palin and the rise of an alternative feminist model.

Ross Douthat nails it: the McCain campaign has been a series of discrete tactical maneuvers and redefinitions without a core narrative based in policy. If you asked them when they’d bring out their economic message you’d get “In September we’ll brand Obama as a liberal.” Nothing on their policy vision. Oh, that.

Brian Williams was annoyed he had to wait so long to interview Palin. But really, the McCain camp’s desire to extract revenge worked to their disadvantage — of the three broadcast network anchors Williams’ interview was the most straightforward and “fair.” And Palin came off well.  So it’s Palin and Republicans who should really be annoyed.

Grover Norquist explains the happiness gap between conservatives and liberals: “When I was 12, I realized the world was not organized around my desires and wishes. The problem with guys on the left is they never figured that out at age 12. And they’re just irritated the world is not organized around their vision. This makes them grumpy.”

I’m not sure why former Pennsylvania Governor Tom Ridge thinks it’s a good idea to tell the state’s voters he would have been a better choice for VP. You wonder what instructions are given to McCain surrogates (“Hey, toss in something really off message!” or “Hey, if you can slam either half of the ticket or a key state, that’d be swell!”)

Joe the Congressman. Really.

Jim Geraghty advises conservatives who have jumped ship that “they ought to have open eyes about what they’re doing, and they ought not to expect to be warmly received by their fellow conservatives after the election.” It would be nice to think there is a price to be paid for disloyalty. But this is politics.

A smart take on the hate crime hoax perpetrated by a McCain volunteer.

Randy Scheunemann takes time out from his foreign policy duties to defend Palin. That would be because so many others are busy dissing her. That “fire the campaign” advice was never more on point.

An informative, fair, and ultimately sympathetic print interview of Palin. Hey, she could have been doing those also!

Megan McArdle on Obama campaign credit card fraud: “The Obama campaign screwed up massively; it should not be possible to charge something to a credit card without matching the name to the name on the credit card.  Most responsible web processors also require that you provide a fair amount of other information, to ensure that people aren’t using stolen cards.  And beyond that, last time I looked it was mandatory to get correct names to ensure that people aren’t violating the campaign finance laws.”

Jay Cost explains that national polls are all over the map because “different pollsters have different ‘visions’ of what the electorate will look like on November 4th, and these visions are affecting their results.” Put differently, Obama is ahead but professional pollsters disagree on the question “By how much?”

Those military ballots in Virginia will be counted. Bravo.

The Department of Justice is AWOL in Ohio.

A silver lining for Republicans: Norm Coleman is pulling ahead of Al Franken.



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