September 3, 2008

Sam Stein’s Claim about Palin’s Local Paper’s Archive Existence Is DEFINITELY False

I wanted to call extra attention to an open item at my Pajamas Media column yesterday (BizzyBlog tease is here) that has been confirmed, and for the sake of accuracy should be retracted at this Huffington Post column by Sam Stein:

UPDATE, Sept. 3: I have just confirmed with Greg Johnson, Managing Editor of the Mat-Su Valley Frontiersman, that the paper’s archives have been online “for years,” and that they have been easily accessible.

This is contrary to assertions made by Sam Stein at the Huffington Post on Sunday.

Since the PJM piece was written in the wee hours of the morning on Sept. 2, that could not be confirmed, and the article was written with qualifiers that archive accesibility may have somehow begun between the time of Sam Stein HuffPo column and mine. As expected, that’s not the case.

Sam Stein’s column therefore contains clear falsehoods that an organization with integrity would retract.

Readers can judge the legitimacy of the Huffington Post as a news source based on its reaction to the above.

ISM Manufacturing: Basically, Stuck in Neutral, with a Useful Reminder

Filed under: Economy — Tom @ 9:19 am

Didn’t get to this yesterday because the news was, in essence, no news.

August’s Institute for Supply Management’s Manufacturing Index came in at 49.9% yesterday, a reading of contraction by the smallest possible amount. That’s down from a barely expanding 50.0% in July. MarketWatch says expectations were 50.0.

Oh, except for one thing I keep forgetting has been in the report every month for quite some time:

Economic activity in the manufacturing sector failed to grow in August, while the overall economy grew for the 82nd consecutive month ….

The folks at the National Bureau of Economic Research, who “officially” determine the existence and timing of recessions (and IMO did a very weak job on the last one), are going to have to explain away why ISM’s contention that the economy hasn’t actually slowed in even one single month in nearly seven years is wrong. Good luck. It wouldn’t hurt if the folks at Uncle Sam’s Bureau of Economic Analysis and ISM compared notes, either.

Maybe All We Need to Do Is Stand by and Let Him Talk

Filed under: Economy,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 8:39 am

Without a teleprompter, of course.

The guy with the most bloated campaign in US history brags about it, and says it qualifies him to be president — while he compares himself to the other party’s vice-presidential nominee:

Obama defends natural disaster experience

….. My understanding is that Gov. Palin’s town, Wassilla, has I think 50 employees. We’ve got 2500 in this campaign. I think their budget is maybe 12 million dollars a year – we have a budget of about three times that just for the month.”

Our ability to manage large systems and to execute I think has been made clear over the past couple of years and certainly in terms of the legislation I’ve passed in the past couple of years, post-Katrina.”

Alaska’s budget is in the billions. Barack Obama has no executive management experience in government.

“Legislation passed” (the existence of which I question, based on what I have been able to review from the current Senate session thus far) is not “management.”

Natural disaster “experience”? Not even John Kerry tried to pass off nonsense like this.

The more he talks, the less he looks qualified to be president, or even the GOP’s vice president.

Keep it up, guy.

Ahead of Sarah Palin’s Speech Tonight

It seems that media and Obama surrogates’ (but I repeat myself) trash-talking and demonizing have lowered expectations of Sarah Palin’s speech tonight to the “Can she get out a complete sentence?” level.

My sense is that this will work to her advantage, bigtime.

In fact, based on her performance on Friday (“That was the best political speech I have ever seen delivered by an American woman politician. Palin is as tough as nails.” — liberal gadfly Camille Paglia), I think the only question is whether it will be the best or second-best speech ever given by a female politician at a major party’s national convention.

Here’s the text of the current champion, Elizabeth Dole at the 1996 Republican Convention (yeah, the other side won, but that doesn’t affect how good the speech was). After that speech, even the nets, which were notoriously hostile towards her husband Bob, had to admit to having been blown away, as noted in this Media Research Center CyberAlert:

“Absolutely powerful performance,” gushed Dan Rather after Elizabeth Dole finished her reflections on Bob Dole’s life. “It was masterful,” agreed Tim Russert on NBC where Tom Brokaw explained: “In the language of this summer, ladies and gentlemen, that was a gold medal performance.” ABC’s Peter Jennings pronounced it “an unquestionably brilliant piece of stagecraft by Mrs. Dole.

A link to the actual vid would be welcome if anyone has it (comment below or e-mail me).

I can’t even think of a memorable second-best. If it’s Ma Richards in 1992, the bar is indeed very low. Alternative suggestions are welcome.

It would be a real tradition-breaker, but I’m hoping against hope that Palin will use Liddy’s delivery style (those who remember it know what I’m talking about) with Friday’s substance (and beyond).

First, I believe she can pull it off.

Second, if she does — but even if she goes with the traditional delivery route — she could erase the teleprompter-only substance-free speech-making mystique of “The One” I refer to as “Mr. BOOHOO-OUCH” (Barack O-bomba Overseas HusseinObambiObama – Objectively Unfit Coddler of Haters) in one night.

A related entry is at


Update: This list would lead one to think that Condi Rice in 2000 is at the top, but I think Liddy Dole in ’96 wins on style points. The Hillary Clinton and Eleanor Roosevelt speeches listed on the same page, which is listed in alpha order by last name, were not delivered at a political convention.

Positivity: Man rescues family from fire, is viewed as a hero

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 5:58 am

From Salt Lake City:

Sat, Aug 30, 2008

Rick Gallegos is a hero. He alerted a grandmother and her three grandchildren their house was on fire and proceeded to get them to safety. Gallegos is a member of Saint Patrick Parish.

Gallegos received the 2008 Governor’s Award for Excellence in Heroism, June 3 at the State Capitol Building. Governor Jon Huntsman, Jr., said, “I’m proud of you. Your selfless act of running into a burning house to rescue three small children, without regard for your personal safety, is remarkable. Because of your heroism, a family grieves only a lost structure rather than a lost child.”

The fire happened in a home near 800 West and 200 North in Salt Lake City about 7:30 p.m., in the fall of 2007. The flames destroyed the home. According to the Salt Lake Fire Department, the damage totaled about $90,000. The cause of the fire was not determined.

Gallegos said he and his wife, Mary, a graduate of Judge Memorial Catholic High School, were going home from the Rite Aid on North Temple and 900 West across the street from the burning home, when he noticed the smoke. He told his wife the house was on fire, and she said, no, they were just having a barbeque. She asked why are there people just sitting on the front porch?

“I said it just doesn’t look right, and I have to go in there,” said Gallegos. “I stopped our vehicle and left her right in the middle of the road.

“I walked up to the people sitting on the porch and told them their house was on fire,” said Gallegos. “They gave me a funny look like what are you talking about? I told them to look up, and then they could see the smoke coming out of the attic. I told them to get off the porch.”

There was an older woman, the grandmother of the children still inside the home, who was now in shock and crying.

“I had to ask her who was in the house,” said Gallegos. “She said the kids, and without knowing how many, I took off. I found two of them watching television. They were scared because I was a stranger in their home saying their house was on fire. I asked if there was anybody else in the house, and one said, yes, my little brother is taking a nap.

“I saw one door open and one door closed,” said Gallegos. “So I went to the room with the closed door, and there was the 5-year-old. I picked him up. As we were walking out the door, he woke up. Because I was a stranger, he started hitting me, screaming, and crying. By now the smoke was thick and I could hardly see or breathe. I had to lean forward to get some air, but we made it out the front door.”

Gallegos told the grandmother she had to go across the street because staying in the front yard was too dangerous. The grandmother wanted her chair that was on the porch. Gallegos retrieved the chair and then began to move the family to safety.

Gallegos said the Rite Aide parking lot was full of people, but nobody stopped to see if he needed help with this family, they were too busy taking photos with their cell phone cameras.

“I was thinking, I need help,” said Gallegos. “I looked back at the house just as the roof collapsed and flames shot out the front door like fire out of a dragon’s mouth. This was all in about five or so minutes. Had we not moved, we would have all been burned, or Grandma would have decided she wanted something else from the house.

“Finally a police officer showed up,” said Gallegos. “Then the fire trucks started rolling in. The fire trucks spent the next 90 minutes fighting the flames.

Gallegos told the police officer everything that had happened. He in turn reported it to Salt Lake City Fire Assistant Battalion chief Dennis McKone.

“Before I left I walked over to the grandmother and I told her I was sorry for her loss,” said Gallegos. “By then she was surrounded by her family. She looked at her kids and said, ‘He’s the one who saved my life. If it had not been for him we would have all been burned. He is my angel.’ We all became emotional.”

Gallegos is the father of three children and the grandfather of five. He comes from a family of 15 children, and family is very important to him. …..

Go here for the rest of the story.