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John Edwards: Liar, Liar Pants on Fire

In Democrats, Election 2008, John Edwards, news, Politics on August 8, 2008 at 9:23 pm

Wow. In an interview to be broadcasted on ABC’s Nightline Friday night, John Edwards admits that he lied during the Presidential Campaign about an alleged affair.

From ABC News:

Edwards told ABC News correspondent Bob Woodruff he did have an affair with 44-year old Rielle Hunter, but said that he loved only his wife, Elizabeth.

“Two years ago I made a very serious mistake,” Edwards said, blaming the prominence of being a vice presidential candidate. “All of which fed a self-focus, an egotism, a narcissism that leads you to believe that you can do whatever you want,” he said.

Edwards also denied he was the father of Hunter’s baby girl, Frances Quinn, although the one-time Democratic Presidential candidate said he has not taken a paternity test. He said he would be happy to take one.

Edwards said he told his wife, Elizabeth, and others in his family about the affair in 2006.

“She was mad, she was angry, I think furious would be a good way to describe it,” Edwards said.

Edwards made a point of telling Woodruff that his wife’s cancer was in remission when he began the affair with Hunter. Elizabeth Edwards has since been diagnosed with an incurable form of the disease.

When the National Enquirer first reported the alleged Edwards-Hunter affair last October 11, Edwards, his campaign staff and Hunter vociferously denounced the report.

“The story is false, it’s completely untrue, it’s ridiculous,” Edwards told reporters then.

He repeated his denials just two weeks ago.

Remind you of anyone??? So much for Mr. Squeaky Clean eh?


Houston’s Dr. Michael DeBakey Dies at 99

In Health, Houston, news on July 12, 2008 at 11:49 am

Dr. Michael DeBakey has been considered by many one of the parents of cardiovascular surgery thanks to his discoveries and inventions in the domain. The famous surgeon died Friday night of natural causes in the hospital where he worked most of his life, the Methodist Hospital in Houston. He was 99.

Watch the video about Dr. DeBakey’s life here from Houston’s ABC Channel 13.

His many innovations (including medical instruments), procedures, and causes made him truly an angel.

Remains of 2 Missing Soldiers Recovered

In Military, news, War in Iraq on July 11, 2008 at 11:07 am







Pictured Sgt. Alex R. Jimenez (left) and Pvt. Byron W. Fouty (right).


Last May, I posted on a story about 3 missing U.S. soldiers. At the time, only the body of Pfc. Joseph Anzack Jr. had been found while his 2 commrades remained missing. All 3 had been kidnapped in Iraq.

Now, over a year later, the bodies of Specialist Alex R. Jimenez, 25, of Lawrence, Mass., and Pvt. Byron W. Fouty, 19, of Waterford, Mich. are back on U.S. soil.

From CNN:

The military has not yet issued a public confirmation, but Ramon “Andy” Jimenez said in a broadcast interview that officers visited his Lawrence, Massachusetts, home to tell him the body of his son, Sgt. Alex R. Jimenez, 25, was found.

The officers told Ramon “Andy” Jimenez that information from an informant led investigators to the remains of his son and those of Pvt. Byron W. Fouty, 19, of Waterford, Michigan, on Wednesday, Jimenez family friend Sandy Almonte said.

The senior Jimenez, a native of the Dominican Republic, said the military told him the soldiers’ remains were identified in the U.S. by their dental records.

The father said his son died for a cause he cared about.

“He decided since he was young to join the Army,” he said. “I’m very proud of my son.”

The military did not give the family any other details, such as where the bodies were found, Almonte said.

Gordon Dibler spoke of waiting for news of his stepson Army Pvt. Fouty after military officials came to his home, The Associated Press reported Thursday.

“Every day that he’s been missing has been a day of `what could have been’ … but after hearing the news … I’m still in shock,” Dibler said.

Major Dan Elliott with the U.S. Army’s 10th Mountain Division confirmed to CNN that human remains were found in the division’s area of operation in Iraq. He said the remains were sent to the United States for positive identification.

The body of a third soldier who was kidnapped in the May 12 ambush — Pfc. Joseph J. Anzack Jr., 20, of Torrance, California — was pulled from the Euphrates River in Babil province 11 days after the attack near Mahmoudiya, which is south of Baghdad.

Four American troops and an Iraqi interpreter were killed in the ambush, which happened in a section of Iraq that was known as the Triangle of Death.

Black ribbons of mourning replaced the yellow ribbons around the Jimenez home Thursday afternoon.

A POW/MIA flag that had been hanging from the home for more than a year was also immediately replaced by a U.S. flag.

Wendy Luzon, another Jimenez family friend who was with the father when the military officers read the official notification to the family, said “It brings closure to the whole deal.”

Pictured above is Pfc. Joseph J. Anzack Jr.

This has become an all too sad and familiar scenario for military families around the world.

Be sure to visit the Iraq Page Website which is dedicated to the servicemen and women who have lost their lives during the Iraq War.

Remembering Tim Russert

In Media, news, Political News, Politics, Television on June 15, 2008 at 11:17 am

As the moderator’s chair was left empty this morning, colleagues and friends of Tim Russert gathered in front of his desk, remembering a great contributor to journalism and the media. Tim Brokaw hosted the remeberence on the set of Meet The Press, while James Carvell, Mary Matalin, Mike Barnicle, Betsy Fischer, Doris Kearns Goodwin, and Gwen Ifill shared similar stories and tears about Russert’s career and life. Maria Shriver was there via satellite.   

Everyone agreed (even Matalin who wept every now and then and at a few points, held hands with her husband) that Russert was not only hard, but fair. Stories about his love for Buffalo, sports, family, music, work, and his Irish Catholic background were accompanied with video and photo images. Flags are even being flown at half-mast in Buffalo today.

As I look around the Web this am and see the various blogs and opinion pieces that are being posted, I have read many that are surprisingly crude and disrespectful. Some have said that there has been too much coverage about Russert’s death and that enough was enough. Others see him as being nothing but a “muppet to the media.” I think what these bloggers and web journalist are forgetting is the fact that with Russert’s discussions and coverage on Sunday mornings, he set the agenda for the remaining week for political banter, including banter from us. Best example? The ton of posts that have been written about him since Friday. 😉 

Russert set the example of a good journalist. He had said that it was the responsibility of the journalist to study and know his guests, then take the opposite side to get to the heart of what the public needs to know. James Carville said that one of the things Russert hated most was when his guests showed up unprepared. To Russert, this was not only an insult but a reflection of how that guest’s lack of preparation inferred that they did not take his show seriously.

Russert has said that Sunday mornings were like a “town hall” where people could gather around their television sets and hear the answers to questions that politicians reluctantly answered. Maria Shriver said that she saw firsthand the fear that guests would exhibit, citing examples of her conservative husband and liberal uncle as they too prepared to appear on Russert’s show. They understood the importance of being on Meet The Press.

So as you go about your daily Sunday activities, hopefully getting ready to celebrate Father’s Day, remember that Russert was a father too – not only to his own son, Luke, but also to all of those he mentored in the studio, in the relationships he made, and to all of us in front of the television screen.



As to my point above about Russert leading the political discussion for the week, we can see that even in death, he has accomplished this. Thank you Tim Russert.











Scott McClellan: Outing the Bush Administration

In Books, Bush Administration, Dick Cheney, Geroge Bush, news, Politics, War in Afghanistan, War in Iraq, Washington D.C., White House on May 28, 2008 at 11:54 am

Some harsh criticisms and allegations were brought to light Tuesday as an ex-spokesman for President Bush releases a new book.

Scott McClellan’s What Happened: Inside the Bush White House and Washington’s Culture of Deception details his time as White House Press Secrerary and gives a crushing negative perspective about the president’s handling of the administration. According to the Politico, who was the first to break the story yesterday:

• McClellan charges that Bush relied on “propaganda” to sell the war.

• He says the White House press corps was too easy on the administration during the run-up to the war.

• He admits that some of his own assertions from the briefing room podium turned out to be “badly misguided.” 

• The longtime Bush loyalist also suggests that two top aides held a secret West Wing meeting to get their story straight about the CIA leak case at a time when federal prosecutors were after them — and McClellan was continuing to defend them despite mounting evidence they had not given him all the facts.

• McClellan asserts that the aides — Karl Rove, the president’s senior adviser, and I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby, the vice president’s chief of staff — “had at best misled” him about their role in the disclosure of former CIA operative Valerie Plame’s identity.

Karl Rove and the White House has disputed McClellan’s book. McClellan also describes the involvement of others such as Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Dick Cheney, Scooter Libby, and Bush’s Texas “connections.”

Read the story from the New York Times here (free registration may be required).


News to Clinton: You Can’t Win

In Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, Democracy, Democrats, Election 2008, Hillary Clinton, Humor, Media, news, Politics, Television, Uncategorized on May 8, 2008 at 2:29 pm

As Jimmy Kimmel and his panel of political experts the Worst Political Team on Television give their opinion on Clinton still winning the nomination, others have deemed that it’s over.

CBS News is only one of many media outlets that is calling the Democratic nomination. On yesterday’s evening news and their opinion section from the New Republic, expectation of Clinton winning the nomination is close to zilch when looking at her delegate or popular vote count.

Dan Payne of the Boston Globe agrees stating, “Hope is all she has left.”

Sam Donaldson also calls the race.

Bill Clinton, on the other hand, states that Hillary CAN win… sounds like someone needs a math lesson 😉

This video is from CBS news and includes commentary from former Dean Howard campaign manager, Joe Trippi:

D.C. Madam Found Dead

In news, Washington D.C. on May 1, 2008 at 4:19 pm

Deborah Jeane Palfrey, a.k.a. the D.C. Madam, has committed suicide. She was found hanged in a storage shed today. Suicide notes have been found but police have not released details about those notes.

She was found guilty April 15 of money laundering, racketeering and mail fraud and faced a maximum 55-year prison term at her sentencing, which was scheduled for July 24. She had vowed that she would never go to prison for running the high-end Washington prostitution ring.

Palfrey has denied that her escort service was involved in prostitution.

Breaking news HERE from CNN.com

S. Carolina High School Student Arrested For Bomb Plot

In news on April 21, 2008 at 8:24 am

It still amazes me how easy it is for anyone – especially a high school student – to get the materials to make a bomb.

From ABC News:

The alleged plotter, Ryan Schallenberger, 18, was due in court Monday afternoon for a bond hearing. He was arrested Saturday after his parents called police because 10 pounds of ammonium nitrate was delivered to their home in Chesterfield. Police also said they discovered a disturbing journal.

“He seemed to hate the world. He hated people different from him — the rich boys with good-looking girlfriends,” said the town’s police chief, Randall Lear.

Schallenberger was one of the top students at the high school of about 580 students and had not caused any serious problems before his arrest, principal Scott Radkin said.

The teen was in the Chesterfield County jail Sunday night, charged with possessing materials to make bombs, the police chief said. Other than the bomb-making material, no other weapons were found at his home, Lear said.

Schallenberger kept a journal for more than a year that detailed his plans for a suicide attack and included maps of the school, police said. The writings did not include a specific time for the attack or the intended targets.

The teen planned to make several bombs and had all the supplies needed to kill dozens, depending on where the devices were placed and whether they included shrapnel, Lear said. Ammonium nitrate was used in the Oklahoma City bombing in 1995 that killed 168 people.

The 13th anniversary of the Oklahoma City Bombing was yesterday, Sunday the 20th.

Obama and Clinton Debate: Who Came Out Ahead?

In Barack Obama, Democracy, Democrats, Election 2008, Facebook, Hillary Clinton, news, Politics on April 16, 2008 at 11:03 pm

Democratic Debate Between Sen. Obama and Sen. Clinton Sponsored by ABC News and Facebook

Did you watch the Democratic debate on ABC Wednesday night? While Sen. Obama seemed to struggle the first part of the debate, Sen. Clinton really offered nothing in the way of a “take charge” kind of campaign. Well, I guess if you call her attacks on Obama taking charge. She really needed to stand out at tonight’s debate but I’m left scratching my head and wondering who really came out ahead. I tend to lean more toward Obama, mostly because he had to answer questions about Rev. Wright’s remarks and defend his own “bitter” comments.

Sen. Clinton stood tall and well versed but seemed to stammer and never really come to a clear answer when she was questioned about her misstatements regarding sniper fire in Bosnia.

And what about the comment to Sen. Obama about his patriotism and not wearing the American flag pin? To the person that asked him about the pin – Where in the hell have you been? This is so old news and he must have answered this type of question at least a dozen times last year. You couldn’t ask him something about taxes or something more important?

Neither one of them would really comment on agreeing to a “dream ticket” however, Clinton did say that she has confidence that Democrats will go to the polls for either her or Obama come November. She said that there may be differences between the two of them, but the differences are much closer in comparison than to those of McCain. In other words, she was making a point to tell Democrats to support the blue ticket and that McCain is not an option come November. AMEN.

According to an ABC poll, viewers seem to think that Obama came out ahead in the debate.

I’m not so sure. I do think that both candidates need to be answering more questions about taxes and the economy. Anyway, I’m a little disappointed by the whole thing.

What do you think?

From Facebook:

Will Hillary Get The Colbert Bump?

In Election 2008, Fun Stuff, Humor, news, Politics on April 15, 2008 at 8:00 am

I have a political science professor that gave me this paper to read this past weekend. The paper, which will be presented in the upcoming July issue of PS: Political Science and Politics, explains the pattern of success or lack of, when a congressional or presidential candidate appears on The Colbert Report and in turn, receives a “Colbert Bump” in financial support. He compares the “Hall of Heroes” (those who are brave enough to go on the show) and the “Hall of Cowards” (speaks for itself!). I had to chuckle yesterday as I was reading it, wondering how long and even if Sen. Hillary Clinton was going to make the big step and appear on the show just for the possibility that it might help her campaign. Low and behold, I read last night that she will indeed make her appearance on the Comedy Central political news show this Thursday.

James Fowler, author of the academic paper, “The Colbert Bump in Campaign Donations:
More Truthful than Truthy,” discusses Stephen Colbert’s own presidential run and popularity.

These graphs show that Democrats who appear on The Colbert Report enjoy a significant
increase in the number and total amount of donations they receive in the next 30-40 days, compared to similar candidates who do not appear on the show.

Fowler also states that some politicians are leary of going on the show:

Nancy Pelosi recommended that members of her own party avoid the show—she might have been projecting her expectations about her own performance if she were to appear.

You’ll have to read Fowler’s paper to understand just how this plays in. I suggest you print it out (it’s not as dull as you think), pour a cup of coffee and enjoy what political scientists really get to study. 🙂 I guess I wasn’t too far off when I decided to do Political Blogs as a thesis. In any case, I’ll be watching Thursday night and we’ll just have to see if Clinton gets the bump or not.