March 12, 2008

Spitzer Resigns

Filed under: MSM Biz/Other Bias,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 3:44 pm

Transcript here.

Coverage, including the paragraph where Republican opponents are first mentioned, followed by when Spitzer’s Democratic Party membership is mentioned):
- AP (7, 13)
- NY Times (18, never)
- Newsday (11, 11)
- Forbes (7, 7)
- Bloomberg (18, 2)

Looks like the further you get away from the newspapers and wire services of record, the more reasonable the coverage becomes.

I would say “later, Mr. Spitzer,” but I suspect there is more of Eliot’s Mess that will come out in the next few months. Given Old Media’s lingering love for the guy, we may have to check the agate type to find it.

_______________________________________________

UPDATE: “Experts: Indictments Loom for Spitzer”

UPDATE 2, March 13: (Humor alert) Darke County GOP notes that Spitzer already has a commercial endorsement.

After Mississippi: Dem Delegates and the Electoral College ‘Argument’

Filed under: Taxes & Government — Tom @ 10:09 am

The candidate I refer to as BOOHOO (Barack O-bomba Overseas Hussein “Obambi” Obama) went back into wipeout mode last night, defeating the candidate I refer to as HR4C (Hillary Rodham Cackling Crying Complaining Clinton) 61-37%.

Ouch.

Updating this post from Monday, here’s the delegate situation:

DemDelsAt031208

So here’s where we are:

  • Obama, after adjusting the estimate at Real Clear Politics to reflect his reported 98-95 delegate margin in Texas, is ahead 1612-1487.
  • Assuming no more superdelegates (“superdels”) commit or switch to him, he would have to take 70% of the 586 primary election delegates still in play to win the nomination outright. Clinton would have to take an absurd 92%. Clinton’s ability to win without more superdels than she now has would end on April 22, the date of the Pennsylvania Primary. Obama’s would end two weeks later after the polls close in North Carolina and Indiana.
  • If the two candidates split the remaining primary election delegates, Obama would have to get 36% of the remaining superdels to win outright, while Clinton will need 73% of them.
  • I added a new estimate based on the superdel trend. Clinton’s 83-superdel lead going into Super Tuesday is now only 36. At the rate things are going, it appears that Obama will at least pull even with her in the superdel sweepstakes. If that’s the case, and he wins only 39% of the remaining primary delegates at stake, Obama would win the nomination. Based on how I see the delegates breaking in the remaining primaries, he would become the outright winner on May 20 after Oregon and Indiana are decided. Mrs. Clinton would have to win 66% of the remaining primary delegates to win outright. Barring an epic Obama meltdown, that’s not going to happen, as she hasn’t won 2/3 of the delegates in any state except Arkansas.

Fully aware of Hillary’s impossible situation and in desperate need of any kind of argument, the Clinton campaign has ginned up a contention that their candidate is the better alternative because she has “won” more Electoral College votes, as seen here:

DemDelsEVsituation031208

There are at least four problems with Team Clinton’s suggestion:

  1. A mythical “electoral vote” victory in the Democratic primary means absolutely nothing in the general against John McCain. For example, Obama’s Mississippi win last night over Mrs. Clinton, impressive as it is, will be tough to duplicate in November against McCain, who has personal roots in the already GOP-dominated Magnolia State. You could argue that Mrs. Clinton might do better there in November. Though I can’t think of one at the moment, I’m sure there are states Mrs. Clinton has taken where you could credibly argue that Obama would be the better November candidate.
  2. Her 101,000 popular-vote “victory” in Texas was probably due to at least that many talk radio-inspired Republican crossovers voting for her. They’re not going to cross over again. Switch Texas’s EVs to Obama, who after all did win the overall delegate race in the Lone Star State, and she’s behind in EVs by 192-229.
  3. At least as I recall Clinton shill and Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell telling it, she supposedly has “won” 260 or so EVs. I don’t see how he gets there, but looking at the chart, he must be considering limbo states Florida and Michigan to be “wins.” That’s horse manure.
  4. Most deliciously, Mrs. Clinton went on the record in 2000 calling for an end to the Electoral College when it worked against Al Gore in that presidential election. Trotting out an argument based on the Electoral College 7-1/2 years later is so, well, Clintonian.

Enough already. I’ll look at all of this again six blessed weeks from now — maybe sooner (ugh) if do-overs in FL or MI actually take place.

Positivity: Lifeboat Hero Honoured

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 5:58 am

From Cornwall, UK:

11:00 – 29 February 2008

A lifeboatman who led a daring rescue mission to save the lives of eight people on a crippled cargo ship is to be awarded one of the country’s highest medals for bravery.

Coxswain Mark Criddle led the crew which brought ashore stranded seamen from the vessel Ice Prince, which began to sink in treacherous seas on January 13.

The full dramatic details of the rescue mission are revealed today for the first time and show Coxswain Criddle and the crew of the Torbay lifeboat braving gale-force winds, mountainous waves and a towering, out-of-control ship to bring the men to safety.

Coxswain Criddle is to be honoured by the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) with the Silver Medal for Gallantry, for his outstanding seamanship during the rescue.

His crew and those of the Brixham coastguard helicopter will also receive honours.

The rescue from the Ice Prince was one of the most daring in recent memory. It began when the 6,395-tonne ship with 20 crew on board became stranded in force-nine gales, 34 miles south-east of Berry Head, Devon.

The conditions were so rough that the seas shifted the boat’s cargo of timber, causing the vessel to list 25 degrees to port.

RNLI lifeboats were dispatched from Torbay and Salcombe, along with the coastguard rescue helicopter. When the crews arrived, at 9pm, they found the Ice Prince was listing 45 degrees and had lost all her power. Stranded crewmen were on the sloping deck but her rocking and unpredictable movements presented a formidable obstacle to the rescuers.

The helicopter managed to winch-off 12 men, despite the winch breaking three times and straying perilously close to the ship. By 10.10pm the remaining crew were preparing to abandon ship and it was up to the Torbay boat to evacuate them. Each had to take a leap of faith to the lifeboat, putting their trust in the safe hands of the crew.

With the wind howling in his ears and verbal communication impossible, Coxswain Criddle made the first of what would be more than 50 approaches to get the crew off the angled deck of the ship.

The rolling motion of the vessel combined with the broken water around her stern meant there was only a limited area for the lifeboat to get alongside. At every moment there was a real danger of the giant vessel’s starboard quarter smashing down on to the lifeboat’s bow where the crew were positioned.

But the crew of the RNLI lifeboat remained focused. As Coxswain Criddle explains: “The ship was quite a sight and I think some of the younger members of the crew were probably a little intimidated. But we didn’t have time to be frightened. We stayed focused on rescuing those men.”

Despite the ferocious conditions and the buffeting by the sea the lifeboat crew stayed to complete the job. Each time a man jumped from the ship they leaned forward and pulled him aboard.

Rescuing the eight men took almost two hours of constant manoeuvring in close proximity to a listing, rolling cargo ship in atrocious conditions.

Coxswain Criddle said: “It was the sort of event that happens perhaps once in your career and the team is posed with a formidable test. Fortunately we passed the test that night.” …..

Go here for the rest of the story.