Town Square

Post a New Topic

Letter: An open letter from one Sarah to another

Original post made on Sep 9, 2008

(The following is an open letter to the Republican vice presidential hopeful.)

Read the full story here Web Link posted Wednesday, September 10, 2008, 12:00 AM

Comments (99)

Posted by Kathy M
a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on Sep 9, 2008 at 9:16 pm

That is fantastic! Very thoughtful and to the point!

Posted by Libby
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 10, 2008 at 11:14 am

The McCain/Palin ticket? Let's see. He's a racist (repeatedly opposed observing Martin Luther King Jr Day in Arizona; unapologetically uses a racial slur against Asians) who voted against equal pay for equal work, and while he may have been a maverick once, he's voted with Bush 95% of the time.

She's a pro-lifer, wants creationism taught in schools, and it appears her poor daughter is reaping the benefits of an abstinence-only sex education policy. She decries pork-barrel politics, but while mayor, requested $27 in goverment earmarks for her tiny town. She lampooned the "bridge to nowhere" project but she initially supported it, and still hasn't given the money back.

I find it impossible to believe that anyone who supported Hillary Clinton could possibly vote McCain/Palin in November. It's just inconceivable.

Posted by ugh
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 11, 2008 at 11:52 am

Kathy, Libby, are you 6th graders too? Good to see we're forming opinions on an 11 year old level. Now Im going to take my kickball and go home.

Posted by 5 grade history lesson
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 11, 2008 at 11:54 am

Tell me, Sarah, where in the constitution does it state a "Separation of Church and State"?

Posted by Grown up
a resident of Menlo Park: Felton Gables
on Sep 11, 2008 at 12:22 pm

Ugh, At least Kathy and Libby are offering opinions and, in the case of Libby, germane information about a person who could rule the country. You, on the other hand, offer no respectful opinions, germane facts or informed analysis, choosing instead to mock. I won't guess your age, but it's quite clear that you're modeling your behavior on that of Gov. Palin. Now go to your room.

Posted by Shawn
a resident of Menlo Park: Suburban Park/Lorelei Manor/Flood Park Triangle
on Sep 11, 2008 at 1:20 pm

The fact remains, as long as politicians act like bullies in the school yard no issues will be resolved. Lets face the facts, regardless of McCain/Palin or Obama/Biden we still have mortgaged are children and grandchildren who strangely may never get any benefit from our dirty little OIL games. If either ticket wants change, then put aside the childish games and get the real issues on the table. Make a change that is robust and worthy of those who fought in so many wars to keep us free and safe. It does not matter who was a Senator or Veteran or Governor. What matters is we have a vision moving forward. Not Backwards!
For those of you who blame Bush/Cheney for the past 8 years, think twice.

Wall Street and Money peddlers have more to do with our recessive economic downturn than any President or Vice President. Unfortunately, money influence is more powerful than political influence. Sure, we could curb domestic spending, cut taxes, close more shelters and allow more then 50% of of high school students fail.

Look around you, look at the cost of living ....can our children and grandchildren afford what we have? Will they be able to survive on wages which slowly impoverish the middle class.

VOTE responsibly! and more often!

ps. Palin is not typical or for that matter common. Too many parent of teens and parent in general are having a difficult time raising their children. I'm am sure every parent out there knows what is like to worry and be embarrassed. The one thing we know for sure, regardless how you vote, don't blame others if you neglect o visit the ballot box.

my vote is not secure with either party yet, I need to hear and see real issues debated!

Posted by Sue B. Anthony
a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Sep 11, 2008 at 4:50 pm

Shawn, big financial interests like Wall Street may have a hand in our current economic woes, but it is our elected representatives who chose to deregulate financial markets and borrow vast sums of money to pay for profligate spending on the Iraq war.

You are right, everyone needs to make the effort to vote.

I find it truly amazing that anyone could still be undecided in their pick for president, but I'm interested to know what it would take for you to make up your mind.

Posted by JP Jones
a resident of Atherton: other
on Sep 11, 2008 at 4:55 pm

Our elected representatives also get to chose to fund the bottomless pit called socialized medicine. Thats sure to be a good use of taxpayer money. Especially when there is a bureaucrat between you and your cancer treatment. And no one in Atherton is likely to be affected by the capital gains tax. Don't worry, you can just put air in your tires and get better gas mileage to make up the difference in energy costs.

Posted by eva g
a resident of another community
on Sep 11, 2008 at 10:31 pm

Separation of Church and State is in the first ammendment where congress is forbidden from establishing or prohibiting any religion. Thomas Jeffferson called this the "wall of separation" between Church and State. This "wall of separation" was quoted in decisions of the Supreme Court in 1874, and again in a number of cases of cases from 1947 on. So yes, it is in the constitution.

Good for Sarah for knowing that we are not to be ruled by anyone's idea of what God wants. We are a country of laws built around a constitution.

Eva, a grandmother in Los Altos

Posted by establish
a resident of Portola Valley: Westridge
on Sep 12, 2008 at 7:19 am

Establishing a religion is different than forming your opinions based on your faith. If someone says that they don't form their opinions based on their faith/religion, than their faith is a sham.

"Separation of Church and State" is nowhere in the first amendment. Go read again.

Posted by Annelise Connell
a resident of Portola Valley: Woodside Highlands
on Sep 12, 2008 at 7:30 am

The US constitution says that:

"[N]o religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States."

I, myself, believe in teaching creationism in Public schools. "Pangu and the Creation of the World" and all the other egg-based alternative explanations would certainly liven up geology classes.

Posted by keep your church out of my state
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 12, 2008 at 8:43 am

The Constitution is not a static document but an evolving piece of work that continues to grow thanks to new judicial interpretations, a process specified in Article III of the Constitution.

There is a body of case law supporting the separation of church and state. Maybe some of you can't find those exact words in the Consitution, but the courts and legal scholars have repeatedly reaffirmed that separation as a fundamental doctrine.

Posted by John
a resident of another community
on Sep 13, 2008 at 4:55 pm

Sarah, You have just shown the sorry state of affairs of our schools today. The first Amendment states, not the Constitution:

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."

Seperation of Church and State is not mentioned in the Constitution.

"The first two Presidents of the United States were patrons of religion--George Washington was an Episcopal vestryman, and John Adams described himself as "a church going animal." Both offered strong rhetorical support for religion. In his Farewell Address of September 1796, Washington called religion, as the source of morality, "a necessary spring of popular government," while Adams claimed that statesmen "may plan and speculate for Liberty, but it is Religion and Morality alone, which can establish the Principles upon which Freedom can securely stand." Thomas Jefferson and James Madison, the third and fourth Presidents, are generally considered less hospitable to religion than their predecessors, but evidence presented in this section shows that, while in office, both offered religion powerful symbolic support."

Is qoute is from the Library of Congress.

Posted by American Way
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 13, 2008 at 11:15 pm

Sounds like someone needs to go back to school, John. Sarah has it right, as dozens of Supreme Court cases have affirmed. Your comments about Jefferson and Madison are just plain wrong; both were adamant about the necessity for separation, Jefferson demanding a wall of separation between church and state.

Anyone who is so deft at distorting the truth has to be a McCain supporter.

Posted by John
a resident of another community
on Sep 14, 2008 at 10:16 am

American Way... Legislation from the bench is a problem in our country. My comments about Madison and Jefferson came from the Library of Congress and historical documents written at that time.
People who do not learn from history are bound to repeat it. In the 60 years of the NEA can you truly say our education system is better off today?

As far as the McCain supporter goes, I am and proud of it. This country needs a wakeup call. The Congress is at a 9% approval rating, and rightfuly so. Both sides should be thrown out and we should start over. Term limits would be a great idea also, like our founding fathers intended.

People do not really know we are in a War for our very existence. We do not need someone in the White House that believes our enemy needs their Miranda Rights on the battlefield. The enemies are terrorists and not US Citizens. To state and think that is just ignorant and scary.

And you, sir ( I assume, even I know where that can get me), must be a liberal. I would think still an American, wanting what is best for the whole country not just the liberal Bay Area. Is that correct?

Posted by Amen
a resident of another community
on Sep 14, 2008 at 2:04 pm

God bless you, John.

Posted by frightened
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 14, 2008 at 2:34 pm

I am frightened by the takeover of politics by religion in this country. I am not advocating that anyone abandon their religious beliefs, but I am quite certain that our founding fathers intended that no one should impose their religious beliefs on others. That is what is scary about the Taliban and it is what is scary about people like Sarah Palin and supporters of "my way or the highway."

Posted by American Way
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 14, 2008 at 4:45 pm

Not a sir, not a liberal, not a fan of either party. But the Democrats are trotting out the usual fare, whereas the Republicans are reveling in their newfound collective persona: lies, illogic, selective adherence to the Constitution, name-calling. It's unprecedented in this country, and it's downright scary. Republicans meet Rambo. Let's all get some guns and go out and shoot the bad guys so that the world will respect our authority.

Whether or not you are familiar with the works of Madison and Jefferson, whether you understand the implications of Article III of the Constitution, it's apparent to me that the Republic majority is veering toward a mindset that can best be described as fascist. The moral entitlement and desire for domination that characterized Hitler and Mussolini infected the masses back in their day. Put Sarah Palin in office, and we might as well be back in Germany in 1933.

Speaking of history repeating itself.

Posted by inmates running the asylum
a resident of Portola Valley: other
on Sep 14, 2008 at 9:01 pm

Sarah Palin's political career is a classic 11th Amendment story.
"Do unto others before they do unto you".
Concerned Alaskans know her for the manipulative demagogue that she is, now it's time for the rest of the reasonably intelligent voters to dismiss her as a manifestation of John McCain's "senior moment".
Let's hear it for turning the clock back to the Dark days of the Inquisition!
Doesn't surprise any of us locals that the greedy, devil may care Siebel, would host a fund raiser for this modern day witch.

Posted by Libby
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 15, 2008 at 11:24 am

You had me until the witch comment. As I recall, "witches" didn't fare very well in the Inquisition.

There is plenty in Sarah Palin's record and her stated views to be concerned about. There's no need for sexist name-calling.

Posted by Also Frightened
a resident of another community
on Sep 16, 2008 at 2:03 pm

What makes us all so hateful towards one another? Aren't we all entitled to our opinions? Since when is one size right for everyone? Does everything have to be black or white? Will we ever learn tolerance and acceptance? Does there have to be a winner and a loser? Listening to myself, I picture a flower child. They weren't all right or all wrong, so I can't be insulted or praised by such an association. Try listening to yourself, to the what and the how of the words. You might be surprised with what you hear.

Posted by Wrong
a resident of Atherton: other
on Sep 16, 2008 at 2:16 pm

Flowerchildren and Hippies were wrong. Thats pretty black and white. next subject.

Posted by Zero Bama
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 16, 2008 at 4:58 pm

With McCain, women make more
Posted September 16, 2008 8 :25 AM

The Sen. Barack Obama campaign is under performing with women, especially older white ones. So, it released a list of female surrogates that will be his force on issues that are important to those women voters -- like equal pay. There also will soon be an ad released that will hit Sen. John McCain on the touchy issue of equal pay.

According to McCain-Palin spokesman Brian Rogers, that is a problem for Barack Obama, since he is the one that pays his females staffers less than the men.

Rogers points to Senate Records showing that women working in Sen. Obama's senate office were paid an average of $9,000 less than men.

It appears that in the McCain senate office, the women on average are paid more than the men.

"Barack Obama says he's for equal pay for women, but women working in his Senate office earn an average of $9,000 less than men. By contrast, women in John McCain's Senate office actually earn an average of nearly $2,000 more than men. The American people understand that real leadership for the change we need is all about what you do, not just empty words."

Posted by Sexist Hater
a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on Sep 16, 2008 at 5:05 pm

Yes, and have you seen this as well? Biden is even worse!

At the NRO, Deroy Murdock shows that Obama is apparently more sexist than McCain in terms of the salaries he pays his staffers. He got this information from a website called legistorm which lists the reported salaries of congressional staffers. Mr Murdock found that:

Obama’s average male employee earned $54,397.

Obama’s 30 female employees split $1,354,580 among themselves, or $45,152, on average.

McCain’s 17 male staffers split $916,914, thus averaging $53,936. His 25 female employees divided $1,396,958 and averaged $55,878.
In other words McCain pays his males and females roughly the same and thus apparently employs both men and women in senior and junior positions in a comparable ratio which Obama appears to not have many well paid women.

I was curious and decided to take a few minutes to see if I could reproduce his results, I report similar but not identical results for reasons which I'll explain below. I also added Senator Biden to the list (and if anyone can find Governor Palin's staff salaries I'll be happy to add those).

The results I found are in the table below:

Senator Male Female Avg Male Pay Avg Female Pay Difference (F/M %)
Biden 15 25 $85,144.80 $55,922.33 65.68%
McCain 17 25 $53,259.36 $55,958.67 105.07%
Obama 27 30 $56,298.75 $45,070.09 80.06%

These numbers are not far off Murdock's. I seem to have lost one Obama male (I think I counted one Obam male staffer as an intern that Mr Murdock decided to keep) and I suspect our pro-rating calculations are subtly different. It could be that this is due to how we pro-rate the handful of staffers who seem to have had occasional weeks when they weren't paid generally around Christmas.

What is interesting is that although Senator Biden is (from this list) considerably more generous with salaries than either McCain or Obama he is even more of a sexist according to this measure.

If you want to quibble with my analysis my spreadsheets are available to play with in OpenOffice and Excel format.

Posted by Pork Buster
a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Sep 16, 2008 at 5:08 pm

Have you noticed that Senator Obama, the junior Senator has the largest staff, despite the more senior senators having considerably more responsibilities and committee chairs etc.

So, Obama is going to fix Washington, heh?

Posted by Fact Checker
a resident of Menlo Park: Park Forest
on Sep 16, 2008 at 5:11 pm

Obama Inflates Role in Creation of Stimulus Package

September 16, 2008 7:04 PM

In Golden, Colo., today, Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., took credit for the stimulus package that passed earlier this year.

"In January, I outlined a plan to help revive our faltering economy," Obama said, "which formed the basis for a bipartisan stimulus package that passed the Congress."

Is that true?

Democrats on Capitol Hill who support Obama say no.

Wanting Obama to win, however, none will say so on the record.

But media accounts from the time make it clear that even though Obama, Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-NY, and Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., all offered legislation to provide stimulus to the economy, congressional leaders looped them and their legislation out of negotiations.

Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson worked with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., House Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kent.

"Pelosi and Reid seemed to be ignoring the detailed policy solutions being put out by her party's White House hopefuls," wrote the Washington Post on January 23.

"Among Reid's toughest tasks will be keeping Sens. Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-N.Y., and Barack Obama, D-Ill. who are on the campaign trail touting proposals laden with ideas Republicans detest sidelined in the talks while Democrats seek broader agreement with the GOP," wrote the Associated Press the same day.

The bill passed 81-16 on February 7, 2008.

The Obama campaign argues that in January 2008, Obama "was the only candidate to propose a fiscal stimulus plan centered on tax rebate checks for the broad majority of Americans. The bipartisan bill that passed less than a month later was centered on rebate checks to the broad middle class along the lines of what Obama proposed."

That is true.

Obama proposed a tax rebate aimed at middle class families. Clinton’s approach, conversely, focused on specific programs targeted at individuak problems, such as home-heating and mortgage subsidies.

But though the bill that eventually passed more closely resembled Obama's than either Clinton's or McCain's, those involved in the drafting of the legislation say it was more a matter of agreeing on a good idea and was not a matter of, as Obama claimed, his proposal having "formed the basis for a bipartisan stimulus package that passed the Congress."

In Vienna, Ohio, this afternoon, McCain said that Obama today "claimed that the Congressional stimulus package was his idea. That’s news to those of us in Congress who supported it. Senator Obama didn’t even show up to vote."

That's true. (McCain was there, and he voted for it.)

Moreover, Obama today was guilty of inflating his role in the creation of that bill.

Posted by Go Barry
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 16, 2008 at 5:13 pm

James A. Johnson - former Fannie Mae CEO and Obama Advisor

Just cost you billions in taxes

Franklin Raines – former Fannie Mae CEO and Obama Advisor

Just cost you billions in taxes

Barack Obama – If we can’t afford his advisors, how can we afford him?

Posted by no koolaid for me
a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Sep 16, 2008 at 9:47 pm

Ahem. Looks as though you McCain supporters can't find any material you can use to defend your candidate's vice presidential choice, which was the topic of this thread. Therefore, you go on the attack. Smooth move, but we're not so dumb around here, and it's getting clearer by the day that McCain+Palin=Pain.

Posted by feminist
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Sep 16, 2008 at 10:00 pm

I have no problems supporting Obama-Biden but I would have many problems supporting McCain, and even more Palin.
BTW - equal pay is for equal work (with experience added into the mix). The statistics about pay say nothing about whether the jobs were comparable.
Many of McCain's advisors are paid lobbyists. Oink!

Posted by Uh oh
a resident of Menlo Park: Felton Gables
on Sep 17, 2008 at 2:09 am

Feminist, he's using *EXACTLY* the formulation Lefties use when they yell that "women only make 79 cents [or whatever madeup figure they use at the time] for every dollar men make."

That's why it's so funny on the "hoisedt by one's own petard" way.

IF you test women's pay versus men's pay using regression analysis in which we consider not only the job but time on the job (tenure), education, overtime, shift differential and so on, women make about 99% of what men make.

Unfortunately for you, the feminists handed over this club with which to beat their hypocritical candidates.

Besides, are you seriously charging that Biden and Obama mostly use their female staff to make coffee or something? Whew!

Posted by Hero vs Zero
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 17, 2008 at 2:11 am

You couldn't get a job at McDonalds and become district manager after 143 days of experience.
You couldn't become chief of surgery after 143 days of experience of being a surgeon.
You couldn't get a job as a teacher and be the superintendent after 143 days of experience.
You couldn't join the military and become a colonel after a 143 days of experience.
You couldn't get a job as a reporter and become the nightly news anchor after 143 days of experience.

'From the time Barack Obama was sworn in as a United State Senator, to the time he announced he was forming a Presidential exploratory committee, he logged 143 days of experience in the Senate.
That's how many days the Senate was actually in session and working.
After 143 days of work experience, Obama believed he was ready to be Commander In Chief, Leader of the Free World, and fill the shoes of Abraham Lincoln, FDR, JFK and Ronald Reagan. 143 days?
We all have to start somewhere. The senate is perhaps a good start, but after 143 days, that's all it is - a start.

And ZERO executive experience!

AND, sadly, a large sector of the American public seems to feel comfortable with this and campaigning for him.

We wouldn't accept this in our own line of work, yet some are OK with this for the President of the United States of America ?

Come on folks, we are not voting for the next American Idol.

Posted by Sarah for President
a resident of Menlo Park: Menlo Oaks
on Sep 17, 2008 at 2:14 am

Sarah Palin Running for President -- Unopposed ...

... or so you'd think from ABC's The Blotter. A reader shares:

Here’s all you need to know about the state of the elections.

A tally of name appearances at 4:15 p.m. Eastern Time on Tuesday, September 16, on the ABC News website at “The Blotter from Brian Ross and The Investigate Team”

Palin: 24

McCain: 2

Biden: 1

Obama: 0

One is tempted, and I think I will, to use the “Send Tips to Brian” link in the upper right of the page to let him know that not only is Sarah Palin not running for President, but I have heard Barack Obama might be….

Posted by Sarah Mowrey
a resident of Menlo Park: Stanford Hills
on Sep 17, 2008 at 2:41 am

While my faith should never be treated like a job qualification in a political campaign, neither should its absence.

So far, in the press coverage of Sarah Palin, I've seen Palin mocked because (1) she prays and evidently believes that prayer matters, (2) she believes in a God who is actively engaged in this world's affairs, and (3) she wants to be the person God made her to be in the circumstances in which she has been placed. These beliefs and desires are shared by an enormous number of religious believers, and not only Christians. They would be politically problematic if Palin claimed that she knows God's plans, that when she prays God gives her specific instructions about how she should do her job, or that her faith dictates a political program that she is unwilling to disclose. (Even if she believes her faith requires some political stances--how could it not?--that is hardly a problem as long as she is open about her politics. Voters who don't like pro-life candidates can vote against them; the religious or philosophical underpinnings of the relevant candidate's stance shouldn't be dispositive.) But I haven't seen or heard her come close to making any of those claims.

In one talk that Charlie Gibson quoted misleadingly, she made nearly the opposite point: that religious believers should pray not that God would be on our nation's side in wartime, but that our nation would be on the side of a just God--that we would fight for good ends, and use the right means to achieve them. Lincoln said as much, as Palin rightly noted in answering Gibson's question. Pretty scary guy, that Lincoln.

If an overwhelmingly secular press treats religious beliefs like those as disqualifying in a candidate for political office, a great many Americans will be effectively cast in the role of non-citizens. I hope that isn't the view most of my non-believing friends take. If it is, I'm going to have to rethink my own voting practices.

Posted by let freedom ring
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 17, 2008 at 8:48 am

This country was founded by people who were tired of living in countries whose leaders were "divinely" chosen, i.e. leaders who waged war against whomever they wished, taxed their own subjects, had them imprisoned or worse if they felt like it, and asserted that a higher power not only condoned but encouraged them to do whatever they felt like doing.

That's the kind of leader Sarah Palin wants to be.

The founders of this country, having experienced the damage inflicted by those who claimed to be doing God's will, erected a solid wall between church and state.

Sarah Mowrey, if you don't agree with the principles on which this country was founded, why not move to a place that is more in touch with your beliefs? Many of us, including those who are practicing members of an organized religion, much prefer to live in a country where our government is not influenced by anyone's religious precepts.

Posted by tired
a resident of another community
on Sep 17, 2008 at 9:06 am

Ring, apparently you didn't get anything that Ms. Mowrey had to say.

and for crying out loud, the founding fathers were religious people, seeking religious freedom, and all of the documents they authored expressed their belief that their freedoms were endowed by GOD.

you can't believe in God and practice a religion, and then turn it off when you become an elected offical. if you can, then your religion and moral compass was bogus to begin with.

Posted by let freedom ring
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 17, 2008 at 9:50 am

No, I didn't understand anything Mowrey had to say because she was the first person ever to say anything of that kind and because I'm an absolute moron who buys, hook, line, sinker, whatever the media tell me.

There is a huge distinction between an individual being guided by her/his own faith and beliefs and imposing those beliefs on others. The war in Iraq is, contrary to what Palin says, not a holy war. It's a war about oil, politics, and money. (Of course, if your religion is money and/or oil, that's a different story.)

Most religions preach similar worthwhile principles: respect for others, charity, compassion. Do we want moral leaders? Most of us do! But that's not the point!

It's clear to me that most of you have only a fuzzy understanding of what separation of church and state means. It's not about atheism or attending church or reading the right kind of books. Both Mowrey's and tired's posts reflect a profound ignorance of fundamental concepts. Why not educate yourself before ranting about topics that you obviously don't understand?

Posted by tired
a resident of another community
on Sep 17, 2008 at 10:13 am

war over oil? thats another tired argument. if it was, we'd have plundered that wasteland and run a pipeline directly to Houston already.

profound ignorance of fundamental concepts because i don't want to abandon my beliefs at the government door? how do you have a moral leader that will sellout their beliefs for a vote? thats fantastic. how much more skewed can "separation of church and state" get? how the mere mention of God, Allah, Ganesh or other panics you people to such a level when the country was based on Christian values is beyond anything sensible.

for the sake of argument, say there is no God and everyone knows this as fact. Why be good or moral at all then? what is the point of treating everyone with respect and love and fair treatment? There is none. our secular society will be a wonderful place when God is gone. Obviously, the Godless communists got it right. human rights in China and Russia are at an all time high. We have something to look forward to don't we?

Posted by Tom
a resident of another community
on Sep 17, 2008 at 10:28 am

Hero vs Zero--thanks for your great post(143 days). I don't know if you created the message yourself, or picked it up somewhere, but thanks. I will be sharing it with everyone I know. But especially your line, "come on folks, you're not voting for American Idol". That, I want on a bumper sticker right next to one that says McCain/Palin 2008!

Posted by Holly
a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Sep 17, 2008 at 10:39 am

Sen. Obama may not have experience in the executive branch of government, but neither does Sen. John McCain.

Posted by but but but
a resident of Atherton: Lloyden Park
on Sep 17, 2008 at 10:44 am

But Sen. John McCain has authored bills and actually shown up and voted for issues, like his positions or not.

Posted by Disgusted
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Sep 17, 2008 at 11:06 am

Is "war over oil" a tired argument? Let's ask Alan Greenspan. I seem to recall that even he acknowledged the war was about oil in his book, or in a recent interview. Don't confuse the utter incompetence of this administration in realizing its goals in this unprovoked war with having more noble intentions.

But enough on that tangent. The original subject, Sarah Palin, is a far more urgent one to discuss. I'd just like to know how Tom and "Hero vs Zero" could possibly criticize voters for treating this election as if it were an American Idol contest (I am appalled by that, too) and yet support Palin, who could very well become president if McCain is elected.

Never has a vice presidential candidate been so important -- the running mate of a 72-year-old man who has had three potentially fatal bouts with cancer. At least George H.W. Bush was young and healthy when he chose Dan Quayle. I'm was never a McCain supporter, but I considered him a cut above any other Republican candidate. But I was wrong. I'll never forgive him for what is either abysmal judgment or a shocking level of cynicism and ambition -- or both -- in putting this country in the path of such potential disaster.

Posted by pinch me please
a resident of Menlo Park: Felton Gables
on Sep 17, 2008 at 11:29 am

>>>for the sake of argument, say there is no God and everyone knows this as fact. Why be good or moral at all then? what is the point of treating everyone with respect and love and fair treatment? There is none. our secular society will be a wonderful place when God is gone.<<<

So, if not for a higher power watching your moves, you'd be misbehaving? And so would everyone else?

Wow. Just. Wow.

Posted by tired
a resident of another community
on Sep 17, 2008 at 12:25 pm

I stand behind that statement

>> for the sake of argument, say there is no God and everyone knows this as fact. Why be good or moral at all then? what is the point of treating everyone with respect and love and fair treatment? There is none. our secular society will be a wonderful place when God is gone. <<

see the rest of that posting regarding communist China as supporting information. There is NO basis for being "good" without some consequences from above. What keeps anyone from doing what they need to do to live comfortably here and now? Just because we want to be "civilized"? where would any of these ideas and laws come from? Look at the basis for ALL of our laws. where did they come from? It sure wasn't out of us spontaneously wanting to be "nice".

also...on the "church and state issue"..

that the "establishment of religion" keeps the govt from saying, "lets give tax breaks to the Mormons, and only the Mormons".

NOT..."don't anyone say anything related to God or your violating my rights."

..figure it out, people.

Posted by Diana
a resident of Menlo Park: University Heights
on Sep 17, 2008 at 1:06 pm

Tired, You're not exactly making a favorable case for religious people if you're stating that without religion, they'd have no moral grounding.

I have figured it our, Tired, many many years ago, as did the folks who established Roman Law centuries before me. A mythical god is not required to believe in the necessity of governing a society by rule of law. I don't believe in god, but I believe in the rule of law for the sake of civilization. I don't believe in god, but I have a very strong moral compass that guides me to do unto others as I'd have others do unto me.

For you to say there's no basis for being good unless one is commanded to do so "from above" is a shocking admission of fear, and an unwillingness to live in the real world and take responsibility for YOUR decisions and YOUR actions.

Posted by tired
a resident of another community
on Sep 17, 2008 at 1:15 pm

Hey...I live in the real world...and I take responsibility for MY actions and decisions. I just don't believe people are good for the sake of being good.

I don't doubt your moral compass either, provided its not for sale (for government office or other power position). I just don't think your moral compass or society's as a whole is/was ultimately derived from a desire to be civilized. What was the downfall of the Romans? Lack of morals, political corruption? probably not the best example, Diana.

I sincerely believe that OUR downfall will come from the LACK of God, rather than his presence.

Posted by pinch me please
a resident of Menlo Park: Felton Gables
on Sep 17, 2008 at 2:04 pm

And therein lies the problem. Those who would control the masses surely are aware that the bourgeoisie are programmed to respond positively to a prospective leader who invokes the right mantras. Media experts know that it's important for candidates to say "I go to church regularly, I believe in God, and I will be your leader" so that the gullible voters will correctly interpret the signals and will not question the candidate's motives or actions.

Some of the most corrupt, dishonest people I know are regular church attendees. None of them is running for public office, but to equate church attendance or belief in a deity with morality is simply specious.

I guess I thought I lived in a community where people were educated and sophisticated enough not to buy in to such a primitive mindset, but obviously I have much to learn.

Posted by Presbie
a resident of another community
on Sep 17, 2008 at 2:27 pm

Diana and Pinch: I feel sorry for you. I will pray for you.

Posted by Diana
a resident of Menlo Park: University Heights
on Sep 17, 2008 at 2:31 pm

Tired, I think you need to do your homework on Roman Law (that's Roman LAW, not SOCIETY), which is based in large part on the philosophy of the Stoics, and upon which our own rule of law is largely based.

I'm afraid our downfall is coming about as a result of our government's abandonment of the rule of law as outlined in our Constitution, and its abdication of its own responsibility to the people by allowing a corporate oligarchy to write the laws and essentially take over the country.

Posted by tired
a resident of another community
on Sep 17, 2008 at 2:32 pm

its amazing how those who claim to be the most tolerant are the most angry intolerant people on the planet. and if you are going to use big French/latin words, pinch, use them correctly. the Proletariat in your example, the poor schlubs (you and Me), would be programmed to respond positively. The Bourgeoisie in your example are the John McCains, and Barak Obamas.

You can say some of the most...blah blah blah...people...but it further strengthens my point that people are not good by themselves. corrupt is corrupt.

to continue, its not what they say, its what they do "practice as they preach" which is appealing. What few things Barak has done and or voted on are objectionable.

The Republican candidates in this case have far more voting and executive experience from which to draw conclusions, IN ADDITION, the paths that they have chosen and are more appealing because they are morally grounded. People LIKE that they are not for killing babies, and euthanizing old people, and pro liberty, and pro freedom of speech (well..except for McCain-Feingold). and where do all of these positions come from?...they are based (gasp) on Judeo-Christian values. God.

Finally, these people are far from perfect, as are you and I, however they and their believes and our society's beleives are based in God and it will be our downfall when we forget (or ignore) that.

Posted by tired
a resident of another community
on Sep 17, 2008 at 2:40 pm

WHY, Diana, did the Romans fail? Because their laws according to you had no basis. No root in God. Just "rule of law". Therefore we can conclude that the moral decline was based on a lack of a solid foundation. A belief in God that we should be good, because there are consequences.

Posted by Tom
a resident of another community
on Sep 17, 2008 at 3:05 pm

Disgusted-I can't speak for H vs Z, but wanted to address your question about supporting McCain while criticizing those who "appear" to be treating this like an American Idol vote. My reasons are really quite simple. (1). I'm viewing this as a PRESIDENTIAL election to vote for my view of the best choice between the two PRESIDENTIAL candidates. (2) We're all mortal-our time will come-so we have a position called Vice President. In 40 years of voting, I never considered not voting for who I thought was the best Presidential candidate because I didn't like the VP candidate-usually I don't even have an opinion on them. (3) I would support decoupling the Pres and Vice Pres positons from party affilliations like here in California for Gov. and Lt. Gov., but that isn't the way it works. So, I really liked the "this isn't American Idol" tag line, because I support Mr. McCain-a politically experienced American Hero versus Mr. Obama-a very promising, but as yet too inexperienced, American Idol.

I gotta get that bumper sticker printed!

Posted by Diana
a resident of Menlo Park: University Heights
on Sep 17, 2008 at 4:12 pm

Tom, In 40 years of voting you've never been asked to vote for a 72-year-old man with a history of three melanomas, either. I believe anyone who decides to vote for McCain should also acknowledge that Palin has a better-than-usual chance of stepping into the presidency, and should therefore consider Palin's qualifications as an important factor in his/her decision.

Another thing, Tom: I don't agree with you, but at least you base your case on a reasoned argument. Thanks for being rational.

Posted by my money is on Sarah
a resident of Menlo Park: Belle Haven
on Sep 17, 2008 at 4:23 pm

If McCain is elected, nothing will stand between Palin and her highest aspiration other than an aging man in poor health. Her religious protestations aside, I'm betting that the chances of her being president within a year are close to 100%. No way will he last the term.

But that's okay, because it's God's will.

Posted by Hero vs Zero
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 17, 2008 at 4:44 pm

"Sen. Obama may not have experience in the executive branch of government, but neither does Sen. John McCain."

Uh, Holly, actually Senator McCain has a lot of executive experience. You see, unlike Senator Obama and Senator Biden, McCain had a life and a career before the Senate. He spent over 20 years in the military, serving in many command/executive positions. The McCain/Palin ticket can easily run on its executive experience, with McCain's 20 years of service and Palin's 8 years of service as Mayor and Governor.

Now here's a real laugher. In a desperate attempt to fabricate executive experience, Senator Obama is now attempting to cite his running for President as an example of executive experience. That's kind of like putting your 2 years of job hunting on your resume as . . . two years of job hunting. Now that's chutzpah. Hence the bumper sticker line Hero vs Zero, because like Oakland, with Senator Obama, there is no there, there. He simply hasn't done anything/made an impact in the few positions he occupied during his young life.

Posted by Diana
a resident of Menlo Park: University Heights
on Sep 17, 2008 at 5:24 pm

H vs Z, The one thing I can agree with you on is that "Hero vs Zero" is suited for the bumper -- representative of the bumper-sticker mentality that seems to have taken taken the place of serious discussion about important matters in this society.

And OK, IF Obama is truly claiming his running for president should be considered executive experience, I agree with you on that point, too. Are you certain that's a fact rather than a factoid?

Posted by Hero vs Zero
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 17, 2008 at 7:48 pm

Obama claiming his running for president is executive experience. Fact or factoid? Neither, its chutzpah.

Barack Obama contends that he is more experienced in executive matters than Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin because he has managed his presidential campaign for the past 18 months.

Speaking on a cable news channel Monday night, the Democratic presidential nominee said he is better prepared to handle a disaster like Hurricane Gustav because of his pursuit of the White House.

“Well, my understanding is that Governor Palin’s town of Wasilla has, I think, 50 employees. We’ve got 2,500 in this campaign. I think their budget is maybe $12 million a year. You know, we have a budget of about three times that just for the month. So I think that our ability to manage large systems and to execute I think has been made clear over the last couple of years,” Obama said.

John McCain’s spokesman called the suggestion “laughable.”

“For Barack Obama to argue that he’s experienced enough to be president because he’s running for president is desperate circular logic and its laughable. It is a testament to Barack Obama’s inexperience and failing qualifications that he would stoop to passing off his candidacy as comparable to Governor Sarah Palin’s executive experience managing a budget of over $10 billion and more than 24,000 employees,” said spokesman Tucker Bounds.

Posted by Not laughing
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Sep 17, 2008 at 9:42 pm

Although I have neither the time nor the inclination to check out the veracity of Hero vs Zero's quotations, it wouldn't surprise me at all if both were accurate, given both politicians' past tactics and stupidities. When are we, the people, going to demand more of our politicians than this kind of crap? I will vote for Obama -- among other things, I'm appalled by McCain's choice of Palin, and consider it shamefully irresponsible -- but I consider Obama merely the lesser of two evils in this sorry race.

Posted by Hero
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Sep 17, 2008 at 10:27 pm

The guy has got less experience than Palin, less accomplishment and you are appalled that McCain chose Palin. I'm still shaking my head, that you wrote that even when the number two on the Republican ticket is trumping the number one on the Democratic ticket. Jeez, even the number two on the Democratic ticket trumps Obama. You don't have to take anyone's word for it to "check their veracity", because if you are reading this you are obviously on-line. It might help to read something other than Daily Kos or Huffington, if you get my drift.

I don't think exposing the lack of accomplishment by Obama is crap. I think his lack of accomplishment is crap. I think swallowing all this bloviating about who is Sarah Palin is crap. She is a Governor, she has been on televised debates, she has been interviewed ad nauseam by the press in the past two years and yet the main stream media would have you think she just popped out of nowhere. This woman has been in many many national magazines, newspapers, television shows before Senator McCain selected her for his ticket.

If you want to know where she stands, just ask the state media instead of acting like she just popped out of the ether. This is a state governor, with an extensive track record. The last time I looked, a state governor is many pay grades above a Illinois state legislator and in seeking the presidency, a lot more qualified than a US Senator. Frankly I am disappointed that the next president will be a Senator, as I prefer Governors for the position.

What I think it comes down to is when looking at someone's track record, did they make an impact in the positions they occupied? Did they make the city, state, country better, for having served. In both McCain and Palin's case, the answer is "yes", they made a positive impact from their positions.

The city, the state and the country are not better for Obama having served in the limited roles he played. He is not a game changer, and has never been one. Palin started on the State champion basketball team, Obama just played basketball (and gets high praise, for accomplishing nothing in that capacity). Palin molded a city as mayor and left it in better shape than she found it, Obama worked as a community organizer and left disappointed in the lack of progress he accomplished. Palin took on corruption and the oil industry as governor, Obama just went through the motions in the state assembly preparing for a move to the US Senate, where he went through the motions preparing for a move to the White House. The resume is distinguished, but thin. All those Ivy League diplomas, and shiny job titles, but no accomplishments.

You gotta do something some time. Obama hasn't.

Posted by Hillary supporter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 19, 2008 at 12:48 pm

I've got a pretty good grasp of where Sarah Palin and John McCain stand on the issues, and that's why I'm voting for Obama. I'm too much of a patriot to do otherwise.

I don't want Roe v Wade overturned, I don't want creationism taught in schools, I don't want more hawkish, isolationist war-mongering in place of international policy and foreign relations, and I don't want more of the kind of deregulation that's landed the country in this economic mess.

John McCain is a shameless flip-flopper who has spent two years opposing his own principals and even his own legislation in his effort to get the support of the Republican party and the religious right.

I may have admired him once, but I haven't a shred of respect left for him.

Sarah Palin is just campaign window-dressing. Not only did she lie about her record on the "bridge to nowhere," but she continues to lie about it, even after admitting on national television that she supported the project and took the money for it.

I don't care if she's folksy or fecund or pretty or a snowmobile-driving hockey enthusiast with a special-needs infant. You'd think after 8 years of President Bush, Americans would be well-versed in the difference between someone who'd make a swell addition to your backyard barbecue party and someone with the education, character and vision needed to run this country.

Posted by Hillary should have won
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 19, 2008 at 4:57 pm

Dear Hillary Supporter,

I too am seething that Senator Obama did not pick Senator Clinton to be his running mate. This has severely put his judgement in question. I also agree with you that we need someone with the education, character and vision needed to run this country and that is why I am going with the experience of the maverick Senator from Arizona, John McCain

Posted by Now pay attention
a resident of Menlo Park: Felton Gables
on Sep 19, 2008 at 7:14 pm

"Hillary should have won," you didn't read "Hillary supporter's" post very carefully. He/she mentioned nothing about "seething" that Obama didn't pick Clinton. I think your lack of attention to detail is also reflected in your parroting of the "maverick" label that McCain's operatives are trying so desperately to preserve -- even in the face of all the recent evidence that McCain is all hat, no cattle.

Posted by Hillary2012
a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Sep 20, 2008 at 12:21 am

I too was very disappointed that Hillary wasn't selected to be on Obama's ticket. She defeated him in Ohio and in Pennsylvania, even after voters knew the nomination had been locked up. If Obama can't win those two key swing states against a dead woman, what chance does he have against McCain/Palin.

I have reluctantly decided to vote for Senator McCain, over Senator Obama, due to the sexist attacks and disrespect that was shown Hillary. McCain has showed us the courage of his convictions. Obama has shown us Biden?

Posted by say no to Sarah
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 20, 2008 at 8:23 am

Sexism? Look no further than the Republicans, who are promoting Palin on the basis of her sex appeal. I'm on the GOP mailing list, where they describe her as "delicious icing on a cake." She was selected because McCain's handlers decided that instead of mocking Britney and Paris, McCain should select a VP who appealed to reality show fans.

Check out her track record and then give me one reason why she should be president-in-waiting. Her selection is an affront to Hillary supporters. I was not and am not an Obama supporter, but the selection of Sarah has driven me into that camp.

Posted by Jealousy
a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on Sep 20, 2008 at 9:20 am

The Democrats are just jealous that the best looking among their women is the battleaxe Hillary, who additionally, only has a couple of extra years in the senate more than the community organizer. Do the Democrats have no end to their talent pool?

Posted by no to Sarah
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 20, 2008 at 10:52 am

Oh dear. I thought we were supposed to stop judging women solely on the basis of their looks?

Jealousy, you'll be 60 one day, and let's hope you'll have acquired some wisdom along with the wrinkles.

Posted by I've seen the light
a resident of Menlo Park: Felton Gables
on Sep 20, 2008 at 11:12 am

Thank you, thank you, Jealousy. I once was lost -- a Battleaxe-supporting Democrat -- but now I'm found. And how grateful that now I see. How generous and maverick-ish it was of McCain to give American citizens the opportunity to have, for at least four years, a former beauty queen in the national spotlight -- very possibly in the White House.

But wait -- I've got an even better idea! Let's launch a new campaign for an even more fabulous presidential ticket: BARBIE FOR PRESIDENT!!!!! KEN FOR VEEP!!!!!! Good morning, America!!!!!

Posted by Jealousy
a resident of another community
on Sep 20, 2008 at 11:22 am

Ken and Barbie probably have more experience than Obama or Hillary.

Posted by Jealousy
a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on Sep 20, 2008 at 11:25 am

Certainly Ken and Barbie would have better policies, in Ken and Barbie's pretend lives, they were both hard working and bought American Jeeps and their relationship was a MAN and a WOMAN and to top it off were attractive.

Instead, we get the Battleaxe and the failed community organizer.

Posted by Disappointed
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 20, 2008 at 12:10 pm

I'm very disappointed in the tone of these discussions. Hillary Clinton is as qualified as Monica Lewinski to be president. They both know how to bake cookies and they both have slept with the president. Hillary has done this for the 32 years of public service she cites.

Obama has been a community organizer, a lecturer at law school (yes he is a lawyer, although he never says so) and a state legislature. He hasn't accomplished much in these positions, but that isn't proof that he can't accomplish anything. It is only a track record that he hasn't accomplished anything so far.

What to say about Senator Biden? I think the less said about him the better. As a matter of fact, both he and former President Clinton would be better off not judging women by their looks.

Why can't we Democrats, nominate someone for president, that is qualfied, competent and with executive experience. This election today should not be neck and neck. With our economic problems, the war in SW Asia, an unpopular Republican in office, this should be a slam dunk. What is wrong with us. An unqualified black man and a geezer blow hard for a running mate have turned this "laugher" of an election into one where there is actual doubt on who is going to win.

I can think of hundreds of qualified Democrats that should be in the White House, unfortunately the two on the ticket on not on that list. I reluctantly vote for experience and competence with McCain/Palin in these troubled times.

Posted by Disappointed is a genius
a resident of another community
on Sep 20, 2008 at 12:19 pm

This post by Disappointed is by far the most intellegent post Ive seen by any of the left leaning people on this thread. A Janet Napalitano would have been a FAR better pick for either President or VP for the Democrats. as a Republican, I totally agree that this should have been a slam dunk for the Democrats.

Posted by Big Daddy
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Sep 20, 2008 at 12:28 pm

Don't feed the trolls.

Posted by Daddy spanker
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Sep 20, 2008 at 2:59 pm

A new study out suggests Obama may have a problem winning the White House because of his race. Seems that too many danged Democrats just don't like black people. I can hardly wait to hear Kanye West of George Bush doesn't like black people fame weigh in.

Here's a thought - were Obama conservative to Right-leaning, I'd vote for a guy like that in a minute and I suspect many other Right-siders would, too. In my opinion, were a Colin Powell or a Condaleezza Rice slightly more to the Right and able to appeal to values voters, they'd have strong backing from Right-side voters throughout much of the land, despite some existing stereotypes propagated by the media.

Unlike Obama, they've actually accomplished something relatively significant in their lives through hard work and not just talked a good game to get ahead.

Lots of Republicans harbor prejudices, too, but the survey found they weren't voting against Obama because of his race. Most Republicans wouldn't vote for any Democrat for president — white, black or brown.

More than a third of all white Democrats and independents — voters Obama can't win the White House without — agreed with at least one negative adjective about blacks, according to the survey, and they are significantly less likely to vote for Obama than those who don't have such views.

Big Daddy, you are right. Don't feed those racist trolls.

Posted by Women hating women
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 20, 2008 at 3:10 pm

Could anyone imagine men behaving this badly? Can you picture men like Biden, Howard Dean, Mitt Romney, George Bush or anyone else bickering over whether or not Barack Obama is "man" enough to care about other men? Or whether John McCain is a man who hates men? Or suggesting they'd like to have to sex with one of the candidates?

Could anyone imagine a Democratic woman of stature and accomplishment (Nancy Pelosi or Claire McCaskill, for example) being torn down as a bad woman? The question answers itself.

Sarah Palin is of course fair game for critics - as a politician. Feel free to say what you will about her record and her positions. Feel free to arduously and passionately disagree with her. But to smear her as an embarrassment to women (nearly half the population) is, well, an embarrassment to women.

More than 150 years later, American women can hear a loud rumble in the distance. Is it the proud applause for Truth, for Margaret Thatcher, Amelia Earhart, Harriet Tubman, Margaret Mead, Golda Meir, Eleanor Roosevelt, Dorothy Day and Susan B. Anthony ringing through the streets? No, sadly, it's just the sound of Cho, O'Donnell, Bernhard and the rest testing out their megaphones.

Apparently, women like Sarah Palin don't have to worry about being slandered by men. Women are doing it for themselves.

Posted by Troll Hater
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 20, 2008 at 3:29 pm

Big Daddy. You are right.

People plain do not like trolls.

Some of us work for trolls, like the caveman who steals your work for his own credit, or the sadist who likes abusing his staff as far as he can get away with it. Some of us see them in traffic, the guys who cut you off in traffic while signaling a gesture that most parents would not want to have to explain to their kids. And of course, there are the political trolls. And like all trolls, people react to them adversely, but what sets them apart is that they also tend to damage their patron at times.

And so it is, that Barack Obama's pet trolls have been chewing away at support he needs in the election, weighing him down and making his message look, well, like he's lying through his teeth. It's one thing for The Obama campaign to examine Governor Palin's record as an executive, but out of line to attack her family as their trolls have done so gleefully. And since Obama has not made much of an effort to rein them in, the implicit approval of their attacks has attached him to the stench of their conduct. So too, the smear attempts by trolls to deny John McCain's heroic service in Vietnam has come back to make people wonder about why Barack Obama has not tried much at all to make clear that he respects John McCain's service.

Barack Obama has been a little too cute the past month, with monsters who - if not under his direction, they have certainly not been condemned by his campaign - have tried to damaged the public perception of John McCain and Sarah Palin, but have instead provided each a stage to defend their records (which they have done well) and to make regular folks question why a man like Obama, Mister 'Above the Rancor', would let his people act like thugs. While Obama has tried to distance himself from the dirty tricks, they are very similar to tactics he used to defeat Hillary Clinton in the primary season, further staining the image he tried to paint for himself.

It is true that Barack Obama can win this election. But he has a big problem with the trolls he set out to trip up his opponent. They are working, instead and with great energy, at tearing apart the underpinnings of Obama's own character and judgment, and at the moment, trolls like Brian are creating an increasing momentum - for the McCain campaign.

Posted by Big Daddy
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Sep 20, 2008 at 6:54 pm

Didn't you notice the powerful and obnoxious odor of mendacity in this room?

Posted by Bilal
a resident of Portola Valley: Central Portola Valley
on Sep 21, 2008 at 11:28 am

It puzzles me that so many of you get exercised about Palin mentioning God in her speeches, since Barack Obama and the Clintons have done so repeatedly themselves. A little bit of double standard, perhaps?

Now let's review what Sarah Palin actually said:

"Pray for our military men and women who are striving to do what is right. Also for this country, that our leaders, our national leaders are sending them out on a task that is from God. That’s what we have to make sure that we’re praying for, that there is a plan and that that plan is God’s plan."

That's quite a lot different in context, isn't it? Charlie Gibson conveniently left the context out when he interviewed her. Just an oversight, I guess. She is NOT saying "we are doing God's will"; she's saying let's pray that we are doing God's will. That's a BIG difference.

Posted by Freedom from religion
a resident of Menlo Park: Felton Gables
on Sep 21, 2008 at 12:13 pm

Bilal is being very selective in what he/she wants to hear in the talk given by Palin to the church group, during which she said the Iraq war was god's will. Here's the link:

Web Link

In the talk, she also said to pray to be allowed to drill for more oil in Alaska, which she claims is also god's will.

I don't approve of the focus on god or religion by ANY politician, but Palin's relious fanaticism is definitely over the top -- and the implications of such a fanatic having a position of real power is frightening.

Posted by Bilal
a resident of Portola Valley: Central Portola Valley
on Sep 21, 2008 at 6:38 pm

"Freedom from religion" said:

"Bilal is being very selective in what he/she wants to hear in the talk given by Palin to the church group, during which she said the Iraq war was god's will."

There you go again... She did not say "the Iraq war was god's will." I provided an EXACT quote above. It has nothing to do with what I "want to hear". It's an exact quote.

Posted by Bilal
a resident of Portola Valley: Central Portola Valley
on Sep 21, 2008 at 7:20 pm

I think many people in this area (and some that have posted here) need to deconstruct the motivation behind their animus for Sarah Palin. Be open-minded and honest with yourselves.

Countless other politicians, both Republican and Democrat, have invoked "God" in their speeches -- particularly in church congregations (as in Palin's speech). It is a very long-held tradition that even "progressives" uphold. Why are you so upset with Sarah Palin? Why aren't you upset with the others? Really?

I think many of you will find, deep down inside, you don't care much for lower-middle class white people who live in "fly-over country." Maybe you couch it in terms like "religious fanatic" or "redneck" But the bottom-line is many of you who live in multi-million dollar houses around here and make 6- or 7-figure incomes have a deep disdain for white people who aren't as well off. At least on the Canadian CBC they were upfront and just called Palin "poor white trash."

I suspect that's the underlying sentiment here. Think about it.

Posted by On a clear day
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 21, 2008 at 8:03 pm

I understand the fear and angst of Obama supporters now that Senator McCain has picked a woman governor to run with him. It emphasized that Senator Obama is a rookie with a thin resume who “loves the future because that’s where all his accomplishments are”.

Posted by Freedom from religion
a resident of Menlo Park: Felton Gables
on Sep 22, 2008 at 6:22 am

Bilal, Lower middle-class white people? And how much did she pay for those designer glasses? And that wardrobe? At that home? And how much money per capita does each Alaska resident receive to allow oil to be drilled? (Do they get a payment directly from god, too, since after all drilling for oil is his will?)

Come on, this is a phony argument, and it's silly to think we're not going to recognize GOP "talking points." I personally would like to see someone from a "lower middle-class" background in the White House, though I know it ain't going to happen for obvious reasons. Sarah Palin lacks the experience and the world perspective (and judging by her videotaped peformance at the church, the intelligence)to be second in command in this country. And as to bringing god into the equation, I'll repeat: I don't like it -- at all -- when ANY politician engages in this pathetic, cynical tactic.

Posted by Bilal
a resident of Portola Valley: Central Portola Valley
on Sep 22, 2008 at 9:35 am

Those aren't GOP talking points. I read liberal icons like NYT writers Maureen Dowd and Judith Warner, going to small-town Alaska-- acting like they're anthropologists or zoologists observing lower primates. Read Dowd snickering at people with tattoos in Walmart, and you get a real sense of where the wealthy liberal orthodoxy is coming from these days.

I just heard the same thing at the PV town center opening last week. The local sophisticates, who drove up in their $90,000 Range Rovers, had to get a few yucks at the white trash from Alaska. They are well represented by Obama, who went to a private school that costs as much as Phillips Brooks, and who belittles smalltown people who "cling to their guns and religion."

Democrats were once the party of the "working class." No longer. Look at an electoral map. Rural America is a sea of red -- except for a few blue spots: Sun Vally, Telluride, Aspen, Park City. We are indded two Americas.

Posted by icon shmicon
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 22, 2008 at 10:16 am

Maybe the problem is you, Bilal. If you don't like rich, self-important people who make fun of rednecks, then why are you living in Portola Valley? It doesn't seem to be a good fit for your personal values.

From what I know of Obama, he probably had a lot of financial aid to help him through school. Like many of us living here, he worked hard and went to prestigious schools our families couldn't afford. That's a pretty pathetic reason to disparage him.

Our country used to be admired for its upward mobility that allowed ambitious people to bootstrap themselves out of poverty and into the middle class. But now we have a vocal contingent that glorifies those who prefer to wallow in their lower class lethargy.

After eight years of a white trash president (albeit one with a pedigree) it would be real nice to have a smart person in the White House. But maybe that's more than this country deserves?

Posted by Bilal
a resident of Portola Valley: Central Portola Valley
on Sep 22, 2008 at 12:24 pm

Icon said: "...he worked hard and went to prestigious schools our families couldn't afford. That's a pretty pathetic reason to disparage him"

I'm not disparaging him for going to an expensive school like Punahou or Phillips Brooks. It just isn't so egalitarian when a person with that sort of privilege belittles people whose annual take-home pay wouldn't pay 6 months tuition.

I'm also surprised at how fashionable it is to derogate people's religion. Kinda thought that ended with WWII.

"After eight years of a white trash president...."


Posted by Tom
a resident of another community
on Sep 22, 2008 at 1:54 pm

Icon Shmicon-so, your definition of anyone who has not been fortunate enough to bootstrap themselves out of poverty is that they are trash. Pathetic! And by the way, whats with the colorization of trash? Trash is trash regardless of their hue or the annual income.

Posted by icon shmicon
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Sep 22, 2008 at 4:16 pm

Tom, if a, then b, is not the same as if b, then a. Flunked any logic courses lately?

Posted by Pray out the gay
a resident of Menlo Park: Stanford Weekend Acres
on Sep 22, 2008 at 5:19 pm

Honk if you want the country run by religious fanatics!

Posted by Icon Breaker
a resident of Portola Valley: other
on Sep 22, 2008 at 8:34 pm

Albright and Powell: 'We May Go to War With Russia!'

Five former secretaries of state took the stage on CNN last night to discuss the challenges facing the next president.

Madeleine Albright was asked about letting Georgia and Ukraine into NATO, and the possibility that doing so would mean the U.S. would have to respond to Russian aggression in those regions:

AMANPOUR: Now you've got Russia invading Georgia. Is the advice to the next president of the United States therefore, you have to go to war against Russia in order to protect your NATO allies?

ALBRIGHT: ...I also think that countries have the right to choose whatever alliance they want to be in. And the main thing, while I fully agree that we can't go back to the Cold War and have a really very bad adversarial relationship with Russia, Russia cannot think that independent countries on its border are a threat to them.
So I think -- I personally believe that we need to go forward with the Membership Action Plan for Georgia and for Ukraine, and keep explaining that it is not a threat.

Amanpour then tossed the question to Colin Powell, saying, "if Russia is (the aggressor) and you have to, you know, keep your NATO allies' security, aren't you then committed?"

POWELL: Under Article 5 of the Washington Treaty, which is the NATO Treaty, when one member of the alliance is attacked from abroad -- meaning outside the NATO geographic limits -- then all members of NATO treat that as an attack...
We cannot say to the Russians, "We are not going to allow the Georgians or Ukrainians or anyone else to start down the path toward NATO membership." It's not for the Russians to decide that.

Oddly enough, I can find no blaring headlines this morning claiming Albright and Powell want to "go to war with Russia." Nothing along the lines of what we saw after Charlie Gibson's interview with Sarah Palin produced essentially the same answer from the vice presidential candidate.

Posted by Biden the bozo
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 23, 2008 at 10:22 am

What a bozo that Democratic Senator Joe Biden is. He's telling everyone that during the stock market crash of 1929, President Roosevelt got on TV and took control. Never mind that Roosevelt wasn't President and that TVs didn't exit.

This dunce, who likes to portray himself as an intellectual finished last in law school and was almost bounced out for plagiarizing work while a student there. This would later rebound on him when he did it as a Senator running for President. We don't need to make jokes about Joe Biden, he does it for us every day. Thanks Obama, for the dead weight.

Joe Biden's denunciation of his own campaign's ad to Katie Couric got so much attention last night that another odd note in the interview slipped by.

He was speaking about the role of the White House in a financial crisis.

"When the stock market crashed, Franklin Roosevelt got on the television and didn't just talk about the princes of greed," Biden told Couric. "He said, 'Look, here's what happened.'"

As Reason's Jesse Walker footnotes it: "And if you owned an experimental TV set in 1929, you would have seen him. And you would have said to yourself, 'Who is that guy? What happened to President Hoover?'"

Posted by right winged atherton snob
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Sep 23, 2008 at 11:25 am

The guy before me summarized my points. Now where is my brown servant to clean my house and my brown yard people to mow my lawn? What is wrong with our youth today and their colored hair and tattoos? How dare someone challenge our good Christian beliefs?

Why can't we just get along the way we did before those uppity folks changed everything in the sixties...

You guys are a joke.

Posted by A
a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on Sep 23, 2008 at 12:06 pm

Before dumping on Biden's educational record, how about looking at what the Republicans have to offer. Sarah Palin bounced around four different colleges, none of them exactly first tier, before finally managing to graduate. John McCain ranked 894 out of 899 in his Naval Academy class, and apparently only graduated because of his family connections.

And then there's Obama, who is in a totally different class.

So, average grade for Dems, B, average for Repubs, C-. Not much to boast about, eh?

Posted by Accomplishments
a resident of Atherton: West Atherton
on Sep 23, 2008 at 12:15 pm

What has high class Barak Hussein Obama done? Missed a bunch of votes? wow...what an achiever. What a nice well dressed black man.

What did he do as a community organizer? More than a governer? fantastic, I didn't know that about him. what a marvelous fellow.

That lousy John McCain only made it to O-4 in the Navy after graduating from the Naval Acadamy. ANYBODY can get into that school.

Posted by Icon Breaker
a resident of Portola Valley: other
on Sep 23, 2008 at 7:28 pm

Captain McCain retired as an 0-6, Army equivalent to a full bull Colonel.

I noticed that A+ didn't address the ethical challenges that Senator "I'm so smart" Biden faced as a student.

I raised the IQ issue about Biden because he is constantly going around talking about how smart he is, and reminding people how smart he is. Unfortunately, he's lying. How can you tell if Biden is lying. You know the answer . . . his lips are moving.

Biden - smarter than us mere citizens!

Web Link

Mr. Biden, whose Presidential campaign has been shaken by news reports about his unattributed use of speeches from other politicians and a plagiarism incident while he was in law school was involved in
a testy exchange … about his law school record … Mr. Biden looked at his questioner and said: “I think I have a much higher I.Q. than you do.”

He then went on to say that he “went to law school on a full academic scholarship - the only one in my class to have a full academic scholarship,” Mr. Biden said. He also said that he “ended up in the top half” of his class and won a prize in an international moot court competition. In college, Mr. Biden said in the appearance, he was “the outstanding student in the political science department” and “graduated with three degrees from college.” …

Mr. Biden … graduated 76th in a class of 85

As for receiving three degrees … Mr. Biden received a single B.A. in history and political science…

of his claim that he went to school on full academic scholarship …Mr. Biden had gone to Syracuse “on half scholarship based on financial need.”… [ and ] the law school “arranged for my first year’s room and board by placing me as an assitant resident adviser in the undergraduate school.”

So he’s a liar, a braggart, and a plagiarist.

Sounds like the perfect VP choice.

Mr. Biden told The Times: “I guess every single word I’ve ever said is going to be dissected now.”


Poor baby.

Posted by tom
a resident of another community
on Sep 24, 2008 at 11:20 am

Biden has a BA degree in history? Doesn't say much for Syracuse. In his interview with Katie Curic the other day he thought TV had already been invented and put in use in 1929 and also thought Franklin Roosevelt was president, but at least he did know what year the stock market crashed.

Posted by 1984 24
a resident of Menlo Park: Felton Gables
on Sep 24, 2008 at 4:04 pm

Yo, Biden basher (ie Tom/bozo/IB). Do we even know if Biden majored in American history? And how much of your college studies do you recall? Would you like to be tested?

Biden's propensity for making bloopers has endeared him to the people he serves. Does it really matter that he said "television" when he meant "radio?" On the other hand, McCain confusing Sunni and Shiite, and Palin having trouble remembering how she stands on the bridge to nowhere and her flip flps on global warming reflect a pair of impaired mental processes.

Be very afraid.

Posted by Icon Breaker
a resident of Portola Valley: other
on Sep 24, 2008 at 5:04 pm

I noticed 1984+24 didn't mention any of the blatant lies that Biden has told. Making an innocent mistake, or misspeaking is one thing. Telling folks lies with impunity is something else.

Now Biden is going around telling folks that while traveling in the war zone in Afghanistan via helicopter his aircraft was forced down, and how scary that was. He didn't mention it was due to a snow storm. Bloopers are endearing, but dirty lies, consistently are not.

We are afraid that this clown will continue to stay in office in the Senate, and might even get a bump up.


Posted by Ms. Smarty Pants
a resident of Woodside: Skywood/Skylonda
on Sep 25, 2008 at 6:02 pm

It seems like many voters are looking to vote for someone who's stupider than they are. There's got to be a better way to boost your ego than by electing dimwits.

Posted by impressed!
a resident of Menlo Park: Menlo Oaks
on Nov 19, 2008 at 11:06 am

Holy-moly Sarah!

Good for you girl!!

Posted by Name hidden
a resident of Menlo Park: Suburban Park/Lorelei Manor/Flood Park Triangle

on Jun 1, 2017 at 12:21 am

Due to repeated violations of our Terms of Use, comments from this poster are automatically removed. Why?

Don't miss out on the discussion!
Sign up to be notified of new comments on this topic.


Post a comment

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

Stay informed.

Get the day's top headlines from Almanac Online sent to your inbox in the Express newsletter.

Which homes should lose gas service first?
By Sherry Listgarten | 5 comments | 17,241 views

Boichik Bagels is opening its newest – and largest – location in Santa Clara this week
By The Peninsula Foodist | 0 comments | 2,703 views

I Do I Don't: How to build a better marriage Page 15
By Chandrama Anderson | 0 comments | 1,369 views

By Laura Stec | 14 comments | 1,235 views


Support local families in need

Your contribution to the Holiday Fund will go directly to nonprofits supporting local families and children in need. Last year, Almanac readers and foundations contributed over $300,000.