New Hampshire

Post primary polling data positive news for Democrats

As statistically indicated, the Democratic Party WILL lose seats in the upcoming midterms.  No one questions this - not now and not in any midterm election.  Cases where the majority gained seats in a midterm are aberrant.  But the picture improved for the Democratic Party given the results of the primaries, primarily because the Right elected a handful of candidates that, like them or not, have thrown a number of races that were a slam dunk for Republicans back into the "leaning Democratic" category. 

There are several other variations on this theme, but the bottom line is that in yesterday's Senate Rankings at fivethrityeight.com, the meta-polling picture improved for the Democratic Party, who now is more likely than not to hold onto 55 seats.  The Republican Party's chances to take the Senate remains at about 6%.  And a lot depends on which party Charlie Crist caucuses with should he win the FL seat (which looks increasingly likely). 

Here's the goods from the dean of polling data:  http://www.fivethirtyeight.com/2010/06/senate-forecast-after-primaries-picture.html

McCain and Ayotte in NH Hit Health Care and Spending

Senator McCain came to New Hampshire this weekend to co-host a town hall meeting with Kelly Ayotte the former New Hampshire AG. Senator McCain is supporting Ayotte's bid to fill the empty Senate seat being vacated by Senate Republican Judd Gregg. The first question was to Kelly Ayotte about her recent trip to the VA. Ayotte, whose husband is an Iraq war veteran, voiced her support for a VA hospital in New Hampshire. The second question was to Senator McCain asking if the current health care bill was passed could it be repealed. While Senator McCain said that the passage of the bill would trigger a nationwide movement to repeal the bill, he also stated that defeating the current bill was far better option. He urged people speak up and speak out against the bill as strong opposition by the American people (our representatives constituents) is now what is most likely to influence the House and Senate. The questions that followed were in large part about the either health care, the huge amount of government spending, the skyrocketting national deficit, or some combination of these issues. Some of the points made by Ayotte and McCain included:

  • The health care bill will collect money from tax payers for four years before offering any benefits in a rather blatant budgetary gimmick.
  • The huge amount of government spending is an act of generational theft, leaving future generations with a massive debt to pay off.
  • Cuts in payroll and corporate tax rates would be far more effective in stimulating economic growth than government spending.
  • The process involved in formulating the health care bill has revealed the broken promises of the Obama adminstration in terms of transparency, bipartisanship, and backroom political dealings i.e. Cornhusker Kickback, Louisiana Purchase, Gator Aid, etc.

Senator McCain was back in his element hosting a town hall in New Hampshire, and Kelly Ayotte had a solid performance too stating that she would regularly conduct town hall meetings as a NH Senator. Representative Hodes, her likely Democratic competitor, has been highly reluctant to hold town hall meetings. For another take on the McCain Ayotte town hall NECN filed the report, McCain: Ayotte the 'next generation' of leadership

 

McCain Stumps for Ayotte - Health Care and Spending are Hot Topics

What the right needs to do to regain acceptance and credibility by the mainstream

The right has lost its way and a lot of people are starting to recognize this.  Books are being written (The Death of Conservatism, Republican Gomorrah: Inside the Movement that Shattered the Party, etc.)  Here are my thougths on what is wrong and what needs to be done about it.

Discredit those who are not helpful

Sarah Palin, Mike Huckabee, etc. have said a lot of downright crazy and dumb things (people with AIDS should be quarantined, etc.)  and are far too tied to Christianity.  They should be called out for that and pushed to the side so that true leaders on the right can rise to the top and give the right a real chance at regaining credibility and the minds of those who are undecided or in the center.  Those who espose hate, and anger should also be discredited and pushed to the side (Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, etc.).  It is long past time for Conservative talk radio to become more academic, constructive, and hopeful sounding, and cater to the best in us (love, hope, unity, civics, etc.), rather than the worst (fear, anger, race, etc.).

Stop catering to the Christian right

Christianity has nothing to do with conservative ideas and theory on money, foreign policy, etc.  There is also supposed to be a strong seperation of church and state.  Our country was formed partially for freedom of religion, and if our government is run by someone who wants to impose their religion through laws and perspective, then we lose that.  In addition, America is not a Christian nation; though nearly 80% are Christian, there is still another 20% that are not.

Stop simply opposing every idea President Obama has and propose alternative solutions

The right has really been a thorn in our Presidents side instead of working with him to solve the problems in America.  The way to gain credibility and get some conservative ideas into law is to honestly work with the left to create good policy, and also proactively propose laws to solve some of our problems before the left takes up the problem.

Stop supporting causes that have nothing to do with Conservative ideology

The right should disassociate itself with such issues as abortion, and other things that are outside of the ideas of conservatism.  Abortion is an issue thats argument against it is primarily based in religion.  The same applies to marriage equality for gays; the argument against it can only be made from a religious standpoint.  Because of this, and because no party should be tied to any religion, just as our government should not be tied to any religion, the right as a whole and Republicans as a party should disassociate theirselves with abortion and start supporting equal rights for gays.  These two issues alone keep some of those in the center and on the left from ever supporting a Republican candidate.  It might cause a lot of those on the Christian right to be upset, but then they can choose the party that best conforms to what their idea of government should do on all other issues, or form a new 3rd party that is tightly tied to Christianity.

Stop being inconsistent

Right now many on the right are opposing government run health care on the idea that even though it may save a lot of lives, it isn't proper for the government or taxpayers to help others.  Yet, many of those same people are in support of the war in Iraq to give people in another country freedom and save their lives.  Why should we spend taxpayer dollars to police the world yet not spend taxpayer dollars to save those within our own borders?  Either we shouldn't spend money to help others, or we should and if we should then we should definitely want to help those within our own borders before those who are not within our borders.

Stop being hawks

The right has become a group of hawks and this is contrary to conservative ideas on foreign policy.  Conservative ideas on foreign policy are as spelled out by the Cato Institute:

Cato's foreign policy vision is guided by the idea of our national defense and security strategy being appropriate for a constitutional republic, not an empire. Cato's foreign policy scholars question the presumption that an interventionist foreign policy enhances the security of Americans in the post-Cold War world, and maintain instead that interventionism has consequences, including the formation of countervailing alliances, the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, and even terrorism. The use of U.S. military force should be limited to those occasions when the territorial integrity, national sovereignty, or liberty of the United States is at risk.

Conservatives need to re-embrace those ideas.  They are the ideas that our nations founders had in mind, and they are the ideas that are the most ethical and that might also allow some on the left to consider the rest of our ideas.

Have a well thought out income tax policy

There either should not be an income tax as Libertarians would like, or there should be an income tax that works to support Conservative values.  A tax that is progressive helps strengthen families at the lower incomes and therefore helps literacy rates, etc. which helps to preserve conservative values of strong families, an educated populace, etc.  Right now the government has taken on far too much responsibility and therefore spends too much and our national debt is growing because of it.  It is time to start cutting back on spending, but at the same time increasing revenue and the only realistic way to increase revenue is through a progressive income tax because those in the middle and lower class cannot support any higher tax burden.

Start supporting alternative energy and embrace that global warming is real and might be caused by us

The science is in, global warming is real and it is probably caused by our actions (and can we afford to gamble that it is not?).  Most of the oil that is easily available is in countries with citizens that do not like us.  Because of these two things, it is long past time to start looking into energy sources that do not emit CO2, and that do not require us to work with countries that are not friendly to us.

Stop catering to Israel

We give far too much money and support to Israel and it hurts our credibilty around the world and doesn't help to reduce the hatred towards us in the Muslim world.  It is time to treat Israel as we would any other country that is a friend and ally of ours.  We should work with them, and be friends with them, but we should point out when they are doing something that works against peace in the middle east and use our monetary aid as a tool to help control their actions rather than blindly supporting them at all times.

Start rethinking drug policy

The war on drugs does not work, and will never work so long as it is punitive rather than based in medicine.  It only makes organized crime stronger, and leads to a larger role of government and often leads to violations of our constitutional rights.  The punitive war on drugs was originally based on racism, and is now based in morality that is derived from religion.  For these reasons, it is time for the federal government to take a non punitive role and start considering policy that would put organized crime out of business, make drug use safer and less damaging to society, and help those who are ready to reform their lives through cessation of drug abuse.

 

 

Emissions Standards: The Global Siege on America >>

Let me begin by pronouncing the agreements that I share with Democrats. Or rather: let me be clear. The Earth is a gift from God, and is, aside from perhaps the feminine form, the most stunning thing in existence. No man alive is so base as to devalue what we have. This vehicle, like the Hand that created it, yields beyond sustenance and gives inspiration.

Now with that caveat out of the way, I submit that the Liberals, the Greens, and the Radical Left’s feel-good ideas of castrating the industrial machine are reckless and downright dangerous for America. The Left (and by extension the Democratic Party), in what has become an international battle royale for energy, prefers to surrender our arms and engines.  They are gruelingly unable to comprehend nuclear and fossil energy as a game-changing tactical weapon like steel and gunpowder. Nor are they able to accept that environmental stewardship treaties ratified by international bodies actually hold deliberate, ulterior motives to tightly bind America in other ways. And a shrugging regard at such powers is one of the most imminent dangers of the new century.

And to temper this sentiment, I believe that America can and should reduce its negative impact on the environment; namely by shifting from coal to nuclear power as a staple like France did and John McCain suggested. It seems that Liberals only like the bad ideas from Europe, but none of the good ones. As a case in point, we would have already reached the Kyoto emissions goals through the nuclear option that Republicans have proposed for years.

 

If President Bush had not pulled out of the Kyoto Protocol that President Clinton signed in 1997, we would have shouldered the burden of what other nations turn and ignore. Sadly, many of the global shirkers were Kyoto's chief architects within the European Union! Aside from ignoring the pollution of China and India which clearly no longer deserve special exemption, it held America to an unreasonable standard.

Europe's Performance:       

The European Union has had mixed results since signing the Kyoto Accord. Spain failed abysmally at achieving its goals and Italy approached underdeveloped Russia to buy carbon credits. To contextualize Russia’s position, the fall of the Soviet Union led to "Perestroika" and an industrial collapse, and Kyoto’s lax standards on Russia were assessed on this collapse. Similarly, Germany claims to have decreased their overall emissions. Yet, the integration of East Germany and the other ex-Soviet states (whose outmoded production stood to be revamped anyway) has tilted this statistic grossly. The reunification of West Germany to East Germany made it much easier to restructure the rusting coal-fired production of the Cold War. This overhaul was slated to happen anyway, making such a benchmark much easier to reach. Now having lived in Spain, I saw the staggering unemployment that fluctuated between 12-18%, and that is one thing that haunts me with upcoming legislations in the pipeline. Spanish Economist Gabriel Calzada detailed the consequences of these legislations in his “Study of the effects on employment of public aid to renewable energy sources,” which demonstrates the damaging falsehoods of the “green job,” whatever that is. According to this perplexed academe, the subsidy of every 1 green job costs 2.2 regular jobs through inefficiencies, displacement, and re-allocation, and he expects the same results in the United States with President Obama’s Cap-and-Trade deal.

The liberal admonitionary chatchprase that “the debate is over” has battered many eardrums, not just yours. In the video below is an interview with Ex Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar of Spain. It’s not in English, but I can tell you that he treats the question of climate change as we do in America. His affiliates call climate change a religion, fettered with dogma, and state we have a “blue planet, not a green one.” Like many in the US, he claims not to be a “denier,” as that label presupposes something to deny. He concludes by stating that the debate is not over, because it has yet to even commence, and that there has been a marked decay in parliamentary spirit and democratic debate in Spain in years past, and that people should return to it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1MD_bDfFaeI

China’s Performance:    

    The People’s Republic of China had recently surpassed the United States in CO2 emission in mid-2008, debunking the notion that America is the #1 offender.  But according to the environmental lunatics on the Left, we, The United States of America, must lead by example through blind faith and hope without assurance, that a military despotism like China will get warm fuzzies and turn green long after we have sacrificed trillions in GDP, millions of jobs, and the strategic high grounds that come with robust productive capacity. Yep. After watching America sadomasochistically self-immolate for a decade, China will want to join the rip-roarin’ fun!

India’s Performance:

Recently, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton visited India, and India’s Environmental Minister laid out a stalwart launch pad from which to negotiate future accords with the West. In short, he was not willing to sell his nation down the postmodern drain. I wish I could say the same for our leaders. Take a look for yourself:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IyfJKgIQPXQ

Hillary’s refuted olive branch in New Delhi will be a microcosm of times to come, as we become the poor little match girl, passing from door to door and selling our eco-wares at no avail to a world hurtling in the opposite direction towards Ayn Rand.

The Ghosts of Energy Present and Future:

In America, we are a nation of people, not “masses” as the planeteers tend to esteem us. Hence, Carl Sagan’s hint at microbes having rights superseding those of humans will not fly far amidst a people unable to subtract anthropocentrism from stargazing, and who care little to imagine the giant unknowable workings of space and time after humans. Politically, it would be madness for a politico to expand his constituencies to mother earth, time, and space (gerrymandering would have to be done in either 3D or parsecs). The only manner in which to mobilize the public, or massage them into becoming pliant, would be to create a false sense of crisis, fear, and to literally demonize opposition as paid off or "flat-earthers." So it comes as no surprise that both Cap-and-Trade and ObamaCare are to be rushed. Despite that, the pending Waxman-Markey Bill puts forth many of the directives of “Old Europe” that will scare away manufacturing to the hills of Asia and Latin America. And Washington DC is counting on your docility to pass it.

Now according to the CIA World Factbook, America produces 14 trillion dollars in GDP as a total of our economy while China produces over 4 trillion. We dump 5.9 billion metric tons of CO2 into the atmosphere while China chugs out a full 6 billion. Now comparing the GDP in ratio to national emissions, a revelation emerges: We produce .00042 tons of CO2 per dollar of production. China produces .0015 tons of CO2 per dollar of production. So if cleanliness is the utmost goal, then the United States should already serve as an example to China, given that with a smaller population we produce more goods for the world at cleaner levels. 

Two points highlight China’s energy strategy for the 21st century: a petroleum highway and an emissions-free nuclear grid to make up for it. They already foresaw that T. Boone Pickens would abandon windfarms (which he did) and all the takeout joints in Hong Kong cannot accumulate the biodiesel grease to power fleets of buses. To put it another way: they’re not screwing around.  

According to Westinghouse Electric International, China has made it a national priority to build 100 nuclear power plants by 2020 (more resemblant of the Space Race than ObamaCare). And this national mobilization utilizes United States technology! Lord knows that the EU is already jacked into the atomic grid as well. We are not.

What’s the matter?  Did I frazzle your hippiemojo-windpower vibe and shatter your image of the avuncular T. Boone, who you learned was so hip during the hopeandchange era? Too bad, undergrad. It gets worse.

Aside from holding our debt, China is leveraging its surpluses to purchase assets around the globe, opening up trade channels to fan out their empire. Africa has become the next battlefield for resources, and China is pulling no punches in applying the same colonial takeover methodology as the powers of Europe did a century past. Nearly one third of all of China’s petroleum imports come from the African continent, and they have begun courting nations like Angola, The Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea, and yes…Sudan. With an economy growing at 9% for the past two decades, they are jealously vying for control of new sources of timber, coal, copper, and oil, and doing so in side by side competition with the United States. Traditionally, China has taken a hands-off approach towards meddling in the affairs of another nations (since they themselves have no desire for scrutiny), but has recently scrapped this diplomatic dogma by cozying up to local oil-friendly African nations and their government officials. A crux of their tactic has been to lay “investments” into roads, fiber optics, technology training, bridges, and other infrastructures that would otherwise bollix African nations to quickly build for themselves. This colonial paradox for a once insular power demonstrates that the searing growth of their nation has alarmingly trumped old wisdoms, and is goading them to do what it takes to win…Confucius be damned and anyone else who stands in their way.

In this quest to outbid America in global energy sources, arms have become a desired currency for petty dictators and warlords, and China is in no short supply. While Western powers have done the same for some time in supporting unsavory regimes for regional interest, the rabbit hole goes much deeper in China’s case. Dangerous regions like Sudan receive their arms shipments from China (and military trainers), while 60% of Sudanese oil output heads in the other direction. This transcontinental circulation of arms-for-oil has been used to curry favor with African members of the United Nations, allowing for more votes to disregard China’s human rights violations and it even compells African nations to rebuff the ineffectual African Union in overseeing Sino-African commerce in its own continent.

Brazil, the fastest-growing economy in Latin America and by far its largest nation, has announced that China has surpassed the United States as a trade partner in an historic demand sweep for iron ore. In February of this year, Brasil’s state-run oil company accepted a $10 billion-dollar loan deal from the People’s Republic of China, and agreed to supply China’s national oil company, SINOPEC, with petroleum output. Through decades of cultural drift from North America, and socialist Brazilian President Lula da Silva at the helm, who blames American capitalism for the global meltdown, totalitarian wheels have been set in motion in our own, western hemisphere.

An Old Bear, still tired of American power, has bellowed out a roar to be heard across Eurasia. It is common knowledge that Russia has been buying up utility companies in Eastern Europe, and providing shelter in the United Nations for Iran, a country with its own untapped resources. The recent invasion of Georgia and South Ossetia impinged into their Caucasus pipeline—one of the few pipelines that flows into Europe independently of Russia. It is no small wonder that Vladimir Putin threatened to sever the pipeline into Europe to keep the west at bay. 

The Final Word:

With exploding demand, China, Russia, and other hostile powers will continue to buy, to seek, and to prod for more economic hegemony, and weave it into their mutual fatigue with America’s superpower status. And what do they all have in common? They purchase assets with government-run oil companies, treating utilities like defense commodities and branching out with the backing of infinite subsidy under the guise of corporate buyout. And to add insult to injury, they are all exempt from Waxman-Markey and Kyoto mandates. Here in the States, we own literally oceans of natural gas beneath our bedrock, and deluvian reserves offshore. We even have three times the reserves of Saudi Arabia in the Rocky Mountains. All of this is capable of being transported with modern technology that has come a long way since the Exxon-Valdez spill ages ago; yet drilling remains illegal in spite of marvelous precautionary advances and a clean record since. This vainglorious distaste for black crude serves as an object of haughty disdain for the Liberal elite, and from others it is merely a reckless childishness regarding the stern realities of this world. Tanks are not powered on corn oil, F-22 fighter jets do not run on solar power, and aircraft carriers do not use windmills. We fuel these battle weapons with fossil fuels and nuclear reactors—the twin strategic pillars of the Republican energy platform and still the beverage of choice for the grown-up world.  

Nothin’ like the real thing. 

As I exit stage right with reminiscence, I recall President Bill Clinton rejecting a Republican push in 1995 to drill in ANWR, a frozen desert, claiming that the project would not yield oil until 2005. This stance would then contort into blatant denial when in 2008, the Democratic Party would then accuse Republicans of short-sightedness for wanting to drill in Palin Country. Fittingly enough, either party has yet to accuse China, a 4,000 year-old kingdom, of being short-sighted.

America is under siege. I suggest we start guarding our aqueducts. >>

 

 

Health Care, So Easy A Cave Man Can Do It

HEALTH CARE - SO EASY A CAVE MAN CAN DO IT

1 - Restrict punitive damages in malpractice suits to $750,000.2 - Enact a federal coding standard... require all medical insurance companies to use the same system. If the industry won't standardize itself, this is an appropriate role for the federal government.3 - Repeal all laws that restrict which companies can operate in certain states.4 - Prohibit employers (including government) from providing health insurance for employees. Instead, require them to provide a cash amount consistent to what they are currently paying for the policy today.

This allows all insurance companies to operate anywhere, with no protected territories.This eliminates unnecessary overhead due to proprietary legacy billing systems.This eliminates the motive for trial lawyers to jack claims to get rich. Trial lawyers can't sue someone for 85 bazillion dollars for having a sponge sewn up inside them. Consequently, malpractice insurance is cheaper.Employers no longer have the overhead associated with administering a health care benefit.Each person/family can now go out and buy their own policy.

5 - Abolish Medicaid and Medicare.6 - Establish a reasonable income limit (use current Medicaid eligibility guidelines + 20%) and give the poor a voucher to go buy their own policy.

Cost to enact? The government will need a small bureaucracy to administer the voucher program. This would best be handled at the state or county level and should be funded federally with some of the money that we no longer spend on Medicaid or Medicare.

Benefits: Former state dependents (Medicaid recipients), now become empowered consumers. They probably can't add more cash to the amount of their voucher to buy an upscale policy. Many of them will become ruthless price hawks, trying to get the most coverage for that money.

A basic flaw our current system is that my health insurance does not work for me. They work for my employer. If they don't give me the service I want, I have no recourse. Under the plan I listed above, every insurance company will be responsible to every customer. They will be forced to compete in a market that they had previously not. If Single Mom has Allstate health insurance, and Geico offers free dental, don't you think she'll switch? If Busy Businessman is getting hassled trying to get his claims paid by Nationwide, don't you think he'll find a hassle free company? It's self policing.

Stigma - Do you know how hard it is to find a dentist that takes Medicaid? Some folks are also embarrassed having to tell someone that they are on government assistance. This plan removes that stigma. No health care provider will know how you paid for your insurance.

Some government oversight is in place because insurance companies will have to justify rate increases (affects the cost of vouchers) to Congress.

Kelly Ayotte Sparks Interest and Attacks in New Hampshire

As Kelly Ayotte looks like a likely candidate for the open Senate seat in NH, the Democrats appear nervous at the prospect launching negative attacks comparing her to both Charlie Crist and Sarah Palin, apparently arguing that she is both too moderate and too conservative.

Excerpt from the New Hampshire Business Review 2010 races starting to take shape.

The most interesting political event occurred when Attorney General Kelly A. Ayotte abruptly announced that she would resign her office to investigate running for the Senate. This followed press speculation about her running and firm predictions by many (including the governor and me, for separate reasons) that she would not do so.

Her announcement produced some inappropriate and intemperate comparisons to Governor Palin’s announcement in Alaska, especially from the head of the New Hampshire Democratic Party.

Ayotte is a talented, serious and experienced public servant. Prosecuting murder cases and administering the largest group of government attorneys in the state, with the attendant responsibility for setting policy, giving advice, and providing oversight of governmental operations, is more experience than most candidates for public office have, so any comments about her not having served in elective office should be discounted substantially.

Kelly Ayotte Sparks Interest and Attacks in New Hampshire

DA Kelly Ayotte Eyes Run at Open NH Senate Seat

WMUR reports that Kelly Ayotte polls well against the likely Democratic challenger for the seat Senator Gregg will be vacating in 2010. Ayotte Performs Well In UNH Survey

A new survey shows that New Hampshire Attorney General Kelly Ayotte may have a good shot at winning a U.S. Senate seat. Ayotte announced Tuesday that she was resigning as attorney general to explore running for Republican U.S. Sen. Judd Gregg's seat. Gregg has announced he would not seek re-election. Democrats appear to be clearing the field for U.S. Rep. Paul Hodes to run for the seat, but other contenders in addition to Ayotte have been mentioned on the Republican side. A recent survey by the University of New Hampshire Survey Center indicates that Ayotte might be the Republican Party's best hope to retain the seat. "Kelly Ayotte is better known and better liked than even a guy like Paul Hodes, who has been in office and is the likely challenger in 2010," said Andy Smith of the UNH Survey Center. "She's also better known and better liked than all the other Republican challengers who have been talked about so far." Roughly 18 months before the election, 39 percent of voters surveyed said they preferred Ayotte, while 35 percent chose Hodes. But when Hodes was matched hypothetically against other possible GOP contenders, such as Fred Tausch and former U.S. Rep. Charlie Bass, Hodes came out on top

Kelly Ayotte on Facebook: Friends of Kelly Ayotte Kelly Ayotte for U.S. Senate

 

DA Kelly Ayotte Eyes Run at Open NH Senate Seat

The Relevance of Newspaper Endorsements

For a while, I thought that newspaper endorsements were irrelevant, that most people didn't care what a bunch of editorial staff writers thought.  For general election Presidential contests, I think this is still true.  This is the case in most state and local general elections as well.

But I do think that newspaper endorsements are valuable in primary elections, depending upon the ideological orientation of the editorial page.  The Washington Post's endorsement of Creigh Deeds may have been the spark that got him the momentum to wallop Terry McAuliffe.  It's no secret that the Post has a liberal editorial page (though less reflexively liberal than the New York Times).  For its Northern Virginia readers, especially in the Democratic enclaves of Arlington and Alexandria, the Post is a very influential political and cultural authority.  Previous to the Post endorsement, Deeds was sort of an obscure, rural Democrat who would seem to have real problems competing in NoVa with McLean based McAuliffe and Alexandria native Moran.  But once the Post gave their seal of approval to Deeds, he became acceptable to NoVa liberals, not to mention a source of curiosity as reflected in the Google search spike Patrick has highlighted.  I guess Democratic primary voters liked what they saw in Deeds.

I think a comparable analogue in recent years was the Manchester Union-Leader's endorsement of John McCain in December 2007.  As you may recall, McCain was left for dead in the summer of 2007 after the failure of Amnesty part two.  McCain never left the race and changed to a scaled down campaign.  After problems with the Giuliani campaign began showing up, McCain had the opportunity to win the 40-45% of the Republican primary voters that shifted between Giuliani and McCain.  Starting in November, McCain began coming back from the dead as many voters were willing to give McCain another chance in light of other campaigns falling apart.

The Union-Leader is perhaps the most influential conservative editorial page in the country behind the Wall Street Journal.  This outsized influence was due to New Hampshire's first in the nation primary and the low tax advocacy by the Loeb family, owners of the paper.  To put it mildly, the Union-Leader has credibility with New Hampshire conservatives.  So when they came out for McCain, it elevated him to serious contender in New Hampshire, and soon after, the rest of the country.

The common element with both endorsements is that they were in primary elections and they were made by papers with well known ideological slants.  Their endorsements were influential because members of each party's ideological base trusted that paper's editorial page as an arbiter of good political sense.  By contrast, the Union-Leader's general election endorsement was virtually meaningless, considering that anyone who likes the Union-Leader was already voting for McCain, while those who didn't wouldn't pay attention anyway.  I suspect that the Post's nearly certain general election endorsement will not have much of an impact either.

Change?? We need only ONE kind of change.. This is it!

Mealer Companies LLC also known as Mealer American Motors Corporation will succeed by manufacturing a variety of top-quality, extremely rugged products with a significant number of money-saving features and options to fulfill the needs of current and future clients. Whether it's the MEALER Automobile or the MEALER USA made laptop, Mealer Companies means more than just great products.

MealerAMC is the up and coming solution for theeconomic change the world needs.

By allowing the MEALER Bridge Vehicle to enter the market first, these automobiles will not only make a reputation of quality automobiles that are versatile, useful, performance oriented and innovative, but also economical and environmentally friendly. In addition to America's demand for a superior MPG internal combustion engine powered auto and the ability to begin building the “BV” immediately, they also appeal to a global market from the start.

Anticipation for our Flagship or Future Vehicle (FV) which provides the ecological solution decried by National governments, California (many times over) as well as the United Nations, will be immense. The solution for what many call disastrous, man-made-Global-Warming hasn't come about just yet, but the greenhouse emissions from fossil fueled cars, trucks and power plants will be resolved. What automaker can make that claim and prove it, besides MealerAMC?

The MEALER FV is designed to provide 3-phase power to a home or office or tent city for that matter when it is parked.

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JL Mealer believes in the safety factor of his products to such an extent that he will demonstrate the safety features of the MEALER Automobile as a televised and living crash test dummy... He expects to play the dummy, so you don't have to.

The MEALER will fully demonstrate quality, reliability and retail potential of what American Ingenuity can produce and manufacture without the UAW, UAC and AFL-CIO restraints.

“Big deal!” Many readers say... “A new US automaker, it was bound to happen... I'm not excited in the least”.

Here's a big difference with Mealer Companies LLC. Employees with MealerAMC and any affiliate with Mealer Companies will be trained not only to build our great automobiles and power sources, but to eventually begin their own USA Manufacturing business where we will not let them fail.

They will become the new backbone for the US economy and will create countless jobs and opportunities for other Americans. Mealer Companies will have the connections for private funding to make these new businesses succeed with the proper training as upper management and CEO positions for their own LLC and Corporations.

Okay, MealerAMC will give us the beautiful and wide variety of MEALER automobiles we need and to top it off, we get a dependable power source for our homes. No Carbon Taxes! No Carbon Cap and trade! We are now free. If you happen to be lucky enough to work for Mealer Companies you will be trained in the clean Green manufacturing industry as well as the dirty much needed manufacturing industry, so that you can leave Mealer Companies and go out on your own with support and the backing of a wide variety of funding sources and experts in the field of making a fortune while re-building this great nation of ours.

Mealer Companies expects other institutions to do the same plan as and rally this nation back into the global leadership role the USA was meant to serve.

We as Americans are the builders and fabricators of the world.

As America, we lead the way when we fail and whenever we win.

So, stop crying and blaming Barney Frank, (even if it his fault)...

Let's grow a pair and fix this problem from the private sector because the spending and taxing gluttons in the US government are simply incapable of doing it.

What will 2010 be about?

Sometimes, election years get focused on certain races to tell the story of the cycle. It is too early to tell what the stories of the next cycle will be, but here are two possibilities.

In Pennsylvania, recently re-minted Democrat Arlen Specter has said that he is not shifting his position on card-check, aka the Employee Forced (nee Free) Choice Act. SEIU and AFL-CIO are already pressuring Specter to cave by, among other things, encouraging Rep. Joe Sestak to run against him, in a race in which card-check would be a central debate.

Ironically, the 200,000 people that became Democrats, making Specter's GOP primary impossible, are likely Specter voters in a Democratic primary. As the Democrats have become more affluent, moderate tolerant, and less labor-dependent, the power of organized labor may not be so large.

What if the Democratic primary became a referendum on card-check for Democrats?  How important -- really -- is card check to Democrats? With Barack Obama, Joe Biden, Rahm Emanuel, etc., all weighing in on the anti-card-check side. Wouldn't that be funny. Wouldn't a Specter/card-check victory be a decisive defeat for the unions? This race could become nationalized in much the way that the Lieberman race was in 2006.

Similarly, I can see a fight in New Hampshire over gay marriage in the general. The legislature has passed easily reconcilable bills that legalize gay marriage legislatively. It is likely that the governor will neither sign nor veto them, bringing the law into effect.

But New Hampshire is different than Massachussets and Iowa, where gay marriage has been created by judicial fiat and seems unlikely to be reconsidered due to the ballot initiative processes. It is also different than neighboring Vermont, which just legalized gay marriage by legislative action. This is a dead issue in Vermont.

But you could imagine a battle in the general election in New Hampshire over gay marriage. Democrats had not controlled the state legislature since 1874, and some of these seats could swing back. After all, in 2006, we lost, as Time put it,  "91 state legislature seats, six of [our] 16 state senate seats and both [our] congressional seats". And gay marriage would undoubtedly play a role in a number of swing seats around the state and be a nationalized campaign. Money would flood in from around the country for both sides.

My gut is that gay marriage will not be a compelling issue in New Hampshire, but this will be the only serious opportunity for pro-traditional marriage forces to defend their position at the ballot box. They probably cannot afford to pass it up.

Aside from all the questions about the ability of the GOP to comeback and the future of the redistricting process, 2010 could be quite fascinating.

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