Archives for May 15, 2012
“It’s not the first time“, writes James Taranto today in his Best of the Web column, “the New York Times has been accused of bias, but it may be the funniest”:
Charlie Spiering of the Washington Examiner reports that the charge was leveled this morning by the Obama campaign. MSNBC host Chuck Todd asked deputy campaign manager Stephanie Cutter to comment on the latest Times/CBS News poll, and she said: “The methodology was significantly biased.” She then “said that she didn’t want to bore the viewers with talk of methodology, but repeated that she believed the poll was flawed.” Pressed by Todd, she said: “It’s a biased sample, so they re-biased the same sample.” Glad she cleared that up.
Yeah, I caught the Spiering piece too and Ms. Cutter’s reaction struck me as odd and counterproductive. It reinforces the image that the Obama campaign is in panic mode — and reminds me of the time the McCain campaign in ’08 organized a bloggers’ conference call to comment a ABC/Washington Post poll showing their guy in trouble.
Instead of trying to attack one survey, Ms. Cutter would have served herself — and her boss’s campaign better — had she said, that this is just one survey and reminded her interlocutor of another data point favoring Mr. Obama — without whining about that one poll, save to call it an outlier.
UPDATE: Commenting on Ms. Cutter’s complaints, Allahpundit offers:
Note to Team O: If you don’t like the fact that people perceive O’s gay-marriage “evolution” as opportunistic, why not try to find the silver lining in that result instead of whining about it?Debbie Wasserman-Schultz did!
When I first came out, I read and enjoyed Edmund White’s early fiction Nocturnes for the King of Naples and Forgetting Elena. His later work become increasingly sloppy and solipsistic; sometime in the 1990s, I stopped reading his stuff. Of the gay writers writing today, White is perhaps the most gifted stylist — or at least was in his early work.
Last night, however, when Walter Olson linked an essay White had written, reflecting on his years at Cranbrook, the “boys’ prep school outside Detroit” that both he and Mitt Romney attended, though at different times, I discovered the writer I had once enjoyed. He reflected on his own years at the school, then considering the nature of the place and the background of the studies, turned his thoughts to the presumptive Republican presidential nominee and considered the recent allegations of the candidate’s adolescent antics:
On the one hand he had an embarrassingly famous father, the governor of Michigan, whom he idolized as the youngest child. On the other he was the sole Mormon, a member of what was definitely seen as a creepy, stigmatized cult in that world of bland Episcopalian Wasps (we had Episcopalian services at chapel three mornings a week). When his father was president of American Motors, he lived at home and was a day student, an envied status. When his father was elected governor and moved to the state capital of Lansing, he became a boarder. Suddenly he was surrounded by other Cranbrook students and the strict “masters,” 24/7. He no longer had the constant support of his tight-knit family. Now he had to win approval from the other boys.
No wonder he became a daring and even violent prankster. He who worried about his own marginal status couldn’t bear the presence of an unapologetic sissy like Lauber, with his long bleached hair (the Mormons, then as now, have insisted on a neat, traditional, conservative appearance, especially in their young missionary men whom they send out all over the world). In scorning and shearing a sissy student and leading a gang of five other boys in this “prank,” Romney may have felt popular and in the right for the first time.
Emphasis added. [Read more…]
Sixty-seven percent of those surveyed by The New York Times and CBS News since the announcement said they thought that Mr. Obama had made it “mostly for political reasons,” while 24 percent said it was “mostly because he thinks it is right.” Independents were more likely to attribute it to politics, with nearly half of Democrats agreeing.
This may help the president with his fund-raising, but don’t think it will convince wavering independents that the president is a decisive leader. “Turns out,” Hugh Hewitt quips, “voters have mistaken ‘evolution’ for transparent ‘manipulation.'”
Law professor William A. Jacobson sees “the makings of a major political disaster not because people disagree with Obama’s position on gay marriage (although many do), but because it revealed once again the cynical money-hungry permanent campaigner and self-absorved politician he is.” Indeed.
FROM THE COMMENTS: TnnsNE1 is “tired of being a political football. Let’s please concentrate on things that really matter to most Americans.” Yes, let’s.
In the forty-seven years since Mitt Romney pulled his last high school prank, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee has grown up quite a bit, donating a large portion of his income to charity and performing myriad acts of kindness, helping neighbors, looking out for people in need.
You would think that a journal supposedly interested in gleaning information about a candidate’s adolescent behavior might also want to investigate his actions as an adult. In his piece on tales of Romney’s youth, Mark Hemingway notes that one “of the major sources for the Post’s Romney scoop is a former Obama campaign volunteer“. Why not turn to journalists from the Boston Globe?
In their biography of Romney, Globe correspondents Scott Hellman and Michael Kranish report how Romney and his family pitched “in to help in ways big and small. They took chicken and asparagus soup to sick parishioners. They invited unsettled Mormon transplants in their home for lasagna.”
In The Daily, we learn more about Mitt Romney’s good deeds:
One cold December day in the early 1980s, Mitt Romney loaded up his Gran Torino with firewood and brought it to the home of a single mother whose heat had been shut off just days before Christmas.
Years after a business partner died unexpectedly, Romney helped the man’s surviving daughter go to medical school with loans for tuition — loans he forgave when she graduated.
And in 1997, when a fellow church member’s teenage son fell seriously ill, Romney sprinted to the hospital in the dead of night, where he kept vigil with his terrified parents.
Stories like these — tales of long hours spent with grieving families, financial assistance to those in need and timely help given to strangers whether asked for or not — abound in the adult life of the Republican presidential candidate.
(Via HotAir headlines.) Wonder why the Washington Post was more interested in tales of Mitt Romney’s adolescent antics than the “timely help” he provided to strangers in more recent years. One would think the stories of what a man makes of himself as an adult help better to define his character than the pranks he pulled as a teen.
Reader MV passed along this story of how non-discrimination laws might prevent an employer from choosing to hire only gay people:
A gay man in Manhattan contends he was fired because he objected to his boss’s biased hiring: The boss, he alleges, had a bias against hiring straight people.
Jamie Ardigo, 32, of Hoboken, is suing investor and entrepreneur J. Christopher Burch of New York for sex-discrimination and wrongful termination. Ardigo, who had been hired as HR director for J. Christopher Capital, Burch’s company, contends he was fired when he sought to change what he claims was Burch’s and the company’s discriminatory practices.
. . . .
[Fewer than four weeks after Ardgo “went to work for the company in early November 2011”] he says, he was seated in a meeting where Burch announced the fact that he hired only gay men because they were productive, and because he trusted them. Burch said the same thing, Ardigo asserts, on other occasions: “I witnessed it in meetings with the executive management team, where he’d blatantly state the fact that he only likes to hire gay men and beautiful women.”
And the problem is?
It is Mr. Burch’s company; he should be free to determines which individuals make the most productive and trustworthy employees. And if he believes gay men to be more productive (and given some gay men I know it the field of finance, I have seen some grounds for that belief), the he should be free to hire them.
If he, however, chooses to hire only gay people, he gives his competitors an advantage — as they will be selecting from a much wider pool of potential employees. That’s said, it’s his money he’s risking (not the government’s).
Now, Burch’s lawyer denies the allegations; this issue may never come before a judge. That said, were Mr. Burch to prefer gay men in his office, well, bully for him. The state should not be in the business of deciding how an entrepreneur selects his workforce.
Since we are perhaps the leading gay conservative blog, I supposed we’re supposed to chime in on the latest Newsweek cover story, given its gay theme and that is written by a prominent gay ex-conservative (still billed by some as a conservative).
I hate to disappoint our readers. I have no intention of reading the cover story. There are only so many hours in the day. And, well, when it comes to Obama, Andrew Sullivan has become remarkably predictable.
Andrew once offered a fresh and unique insight into gay culture and American politics. Now he just offers the party line.
Indeed, so goofy is he for Obama that he accords him an honor he once bestowed upon Abraham Lincoln. In October 2010, he held that Abraham Lincoln was gay. And since Lincoln served roughly a century before Obama was born, that would make Obama the second gay president.
To call Obama a “gay president” is to ignore the first two years of his administration when he dragged his feet on repeal of Don’t Ask/Don’t Tell (DADT) and neglected to push Congress to act on DOMA repeal or civil union recognition. A gay president would have made those issues a priority and would not have needed energetic left-of-center bloggers to spur him on. Eventually, he did do the right thing on DADT — but only after considerable pressure from those bloggers. He didn’t do much, if anything, to advance federal recognition of same-sex unions.
With that in mind, I have little interest in reading a piece by Andrew on Obama. He sees the president not as he is, but as he would like the Democrat to be.
And reading Andrew Sullivan today is like returning to a beloved restaurant only to learn that they have taken all your favorite dishes off the menu and replaced them with the fare served at a chain restaurant, say Arby’s.