Monday, December 15, 2008
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
Thursday, September 25, 2008
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
Sunday, September 21, 2008
Almost as funny (Text and story from politico.com):
Sen. John McCain’s top campaign aides convened a conference call today to complain of being called “liars.” They pressed the media to scrutinize specific elements of Sen. Barack Obama’s record.
But the call was so rife with simple, often inexplicable misstatements of fact that it may have had the opposite effect: to deepen the perception, dangerous to McCain, that he and his aides have little regard for factual accuracy.
The errors in McCain strategist Steve Schmidt’s charges against Obama and Sen. Joe Biden were particularly notable because they seemed unnecessary. Schmidt repeatedly gilded the lily: He exaggerated the Biden family's already problematic ties to the credit card industry; Obama’s embarrassing relationship with a 1960s radical; and an Obama supporter’s over-the-top attack on Sarah Palin when — in each case — the truth would have been damaging enough.
“Any time the Obama campaign is criticized at any level, the critics are immediately derided as liars,” Schmidt told reporters.
But as he went on to list a series of stories he thought reporters should be writing about Obama and Biden, in almost every instance he got the details wrong.
Schmidt criticized the press for the relatively sparse coverage of the fact that one of Biden’s sons, Hunter, is a registered federal lobbyist.
“His son is a lobbyist for the credit card and banking industry,” Schmidt said.
But Hunter Biden’s lobbying clients don’t include any banks or credit card companies. He did work, as a vice president and then as a consultant, for MBNA, a Delaware-based bank and credit card giant to which Biden had close ties. But he does not appear to have lobbied for the firm.
“Steve Schmidt lied — or just got it flat wrong," said Biden spokesman David Wade. "Hunter Biden has never — never — been a lobbyist for the credit card or banking industry."
Schmidt attacked Obama for his ties to William Ayers, who has spoken of his role in 1960s anti-war bombings committed by the Weather Underground.
"What we know for sure, and is beyond debate and argumentation is this: Senator Obama said that William Ayers is a guy that lives in his neighborhood. We know that that is a disingenuous and untruthful answer,” Schmidt said.
“Senator Obama began his political career in its early stages raising money at Ayers’ house,” he said.
Obama did hold a 1995 campaign event at Ayers’ house. It was not, however, a fundraiser, and Ayers did not contribute money to Obama’s first campaign, according to Illinois records.
Schmidt also complained of Obama backers’ attacks on McCain’s running mate, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.
“As soon as Gov. Palin was nominated, one of … Obama’s chief campaign surrogates, [Florida Rep.] Robert Wexler, went out and accused her of being a Nazi sympathizer,” Schmidt said. “Where is the outrage to that aspersion on the part of some of the biggest newspapers in the country?”
But Wexler didn’t call Palin a Nazi sympathizer. He called former presidential candidate Pat Buchanan a Nazi sympathizer, and attacked Palin for allegedly having endorsed him.
“John McCain's decision to select a vice presidential running mate that endorsed Pat Buchanan for president in 2000 is a direct affront to all Jewish Americans. Pat Buchanan is a Nazi sympathizer with a uniquely atrocious record on Israel,” Wexler said.
(Wexler was apparently wrong: Though Buchanan claimed that Palin had supported him, she said she backed Steve Forbes in 1996 and 2000, and no evidence has emerged to the contrary.)
Asked about the series of errors, McCain aides could not provide evidence to back up Schmidt’s assertions.
One McCain aide, Michael Goldfarb, said Politico was “quibbling with ridiculously small details when the basic things are completely right.”
Another, Brian Rogers, responded more directly:
“You are in the tank,” he e-mailed.
Thursday, September 18, 2008
A very simple but (I thought) very good point was made to me last night, regarding polling data and Obama's numbers. Pollsters often get their data by calling landline phones at dinnertime, which inadvertently leaves out an important segment of the population: the cellphone-reliant youth vote. Several people in the 18-24 bracket (including yours truly) are sans landline phones. Therefore, a lot of national polling data doesn't include an important and very large segment of Obama supporters.
In years past, this hasn't been been hugely important because the youth vote has a pitiful turnout rate on election day. But this year, that could change.
Point being: never mind the women's vote or the blue collar vote as the game changer in the election. I think if the youth vote turns out in record numbers (or if they don't) it will make a world of difference about how close this election will be.
Sunday, September 14, 2008
And a little sobriety from Frank Rich, blatantly liberal leaning to be sure, but who sure knows how to make a point:
"But race is just one manifestation of the emotion that defined the Palin rollout. That dominant emotion is fear — an abject fear of change. Fear of a demographical revolution that will put whites in the American minority by 2042. Fear of the technological revolution and globalization that have gutted those small towns and factories Palin apotheosized...
...Since St. Paul, Democrats have been feasting on the hypocrisy of the Palin partisans, understandably enough. The same Republicans who attack Democrats for being too P.C. about race now howl about sexism with such abandon you half-expect Phyllis Schlafly and Carly Fiorina to stage a bra-burning. The same gang that once fueled Internet rumors and media feeding frenzies over the Clintons’ private lives now express pious outrage when the same fate befalls the Palins...
...But the ultimate hypocrisy is that these woebegone, frightened opponents of change, sworn enemies of race-based college-admission initiatives, are now demanding their own affirmative action program for white folks applying to the electoral college. They want the bar for admission to the White House to be placed so low that legitimate scrutiny and criticism of Palin’s qualifications, record and family values can all be placed off limits. Byron York of National Review, a rare conservative who acknowledges the double standard, captured it best: “If the Obamas had a 17-year-old daughter who was unmarried and pregnant by a tough-talking black kid, my guess is if they all appeared onstage at a Democratic convention and the delegates were cheering wildly, a number of conservatives might be discussing the issue of dysfunctional black families.”
Tuesday, September 9, 2008
I've been quite a big Michelle Williams fan ever since Brokeback Mountain. (Dawson's Creek didn't quite do it for me, especially when she so randomly died at the end. Really, WB? Did you really think that show needed to be more morose and weepy than it already was?) So I was happy to see an extremely intersting interview (her first in eight months) in the Times. Some highlights: (Full interview here)
- "Looking ahead to her year off she said that she wanted to pick up a skill, some kind of handicraft. “I want to humble myself in front of a task like embroidery,” she said. “I like how physical work can really free your mind.” At a low point last year she signed up for night classes in bookbinding and calligraphy. “I was prouder of my little foldout book than of some movies that I’ve made,” she said.
- On what she reads during filming: "She...favors poetry over novels while filming so she’s not distracted by competing narratives."
- On her difficult past year: “I think I stopped feeling creative a while ago, and I’m just realizing it now... I used to have all the time in the world to daydream and even just to dream and let your unconscious do some of the work for you,” she said. “Now I’m up at 5 in the morning, and I don’t remember what I dreamed about.”
In any case, between her new Scorcese, Wim Wenders and Kaufman films, she certainly seems to be doing more interesting work than Katie, James or Joshua.
Monday, September 8, 2008
But enough of that. Happier thoughts and times prevail because:
Fashion Week Commences!
a) Designers at work: Thakoon (via NYTimes)
b) Lucky's good blog on the favorite items they're seeing
c) and the mother of all fashion week blogs, Cathryn Horn
(images: luckymag.com, nytimes.com)
Thursday, September 4, 2008
Wednesday, September 3, 2008
Tuesday, September 2, 2008
How about by watching Diddy of Puff Daddy/P. Diddy fame spin around in a circle while he vents eloquently about the potential VP:
"Alaska?? Alaska. Alaska! Alaska. Come on man. I don't even know if there are black people in Alaska...If you really think we're going to let you, like, win this election with these crazy decisions you're making, you're buggin'."
And his Extremely Sage Advice:
"You should have gotten Michelle Obama to be your running mate. That would have been fly."
Thursday, August 28, 2008
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
Monday, August 25, 2008
The highlights, in my humble opinion, were the ladies of the evening -- Claire McCaskill of Missouri who gave the one feisty speech of the night, and Michelle Obama, who spoke extremely well. She also looked mad good. Not surprising, though -- this woman has got some incredible style:
Tonight: Hillary speaks and the "cathartic" process begins. Thank goodness there's still some whiskey and cake left in the fridge.
P.S. And to the Dems: if someone in some speech soon doesn't give the McCain campaign the swift, hard, ass-kicking they deserve after this, this and this, I will find a way to fly to Denver and have this guy do it for you.
Thursday, August 21, 2008
I want to like GAP. Who doesn't love their commercials. So fun! So catchy! So many celebrity endorsements! And although I find myself always stopping in and pondering whether I need yet another gray t-shirt or badly shaped navy dress (you just can't take suburbia out of a girl, it seems) I'm inevitably disappointed.
So when the Style Section today included a piece on GAP's new fall lineup under the care of Patrick Robinson, I was intrigued. Perhaps, perhaps, they had found the right designer to unearth the store's potential.
While the style is too hobo-chic for my taste, he's definitely gotten the androgynous look down in a much more stylish and modern way than they ever have. And certain pieces of the collection, like the woman's blazer on top and the leather vest in the middle picture seem like potential keepers.
What do you guys think? Is he really the "megabrand messiah"?
Monday, August 18, 2008
Thursday, August 14, 2008
Apologies for the spotty posting; it's been a bit of a marathon week. Terence's suggestions for post topics included a) videogames b) world of warcraft (a.k.a..."wow") and c) food. This post will be about exactly none of those things. Sorry, T!
1. Philiip Lim's kids line = some of the most ridiculously fashionable clothes I have ever seen. I can't stop looking at and coveting those exact outfits (well, maybe with some heels added) for my own size.
2. Minorities no longer?
3. A Cup of Jo posted this on her blog, and it's surprisingly hard. Try naming the 100 most common words in the English language in just five minutes. (I achieved the sad little score of fifty.)
Friday, August 8, 2008
Two-tone dress: $146 (orig. $202)
Seersucker Sport Jacket: $136 (orig. $272)
Poplin pencil skirt: $94 (orig. $188)
Black stretch jeans: $135.00
"Two weeks ago a journalist, a moderate liberal, spoke to me of what he called Mr. Obama's arrogance. I said I didn't think it was arrogance but high self-regard. He said there's no difference. I said no, arrogance has an air about it of pushing people around, insisting on your way. Mr. Obama doesn't seem like that. He took down a machine without raising his voice. Extremely high self-regard, though, can itself be a problem.
"What's wrong with that?" my friend said. "You want a self-confident president."
I said yes, but it brings up the Churchill question. Churchill had been scored by an acquaintance for his own very high self-regard, and responded with what was for him a certain sheepishness. "We're all worms," he said, "but I do believe I am a glowworm." He believed he was great, and he was. Is Mr. Obama a glowworm? Does he have real greatness in him? Or is he, say, a product of the self-esteem campaign, that movement within the schools and homes of our country the past 25 years that says the way to get a winner is to tell the kid he's a winner every day?
Is Mr. Obama's self-conception in line with his gifts, depth, wisdom and character? That's the big question, I suspect, on a number of minds."
Thursday, August 7, 2008
Friday, August 1, 2008
Chamillionaire (yes, Chamillionaire) somehow saw a little video ekp and I did for a company my sister works for, and wrote via email to our employers, "Saw the youtube video...that S is hot."
Wednesday, July 30, 2008
It's easy to tell the studio movies that feel entitled to be put into the elusive "best picture" category: they feature A-list actors with some sort of British/Australian lineage and roll-out dates in between Thanksgiving and late December. One of these pics that has particularly piqued my interest is The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (Cate Blanchett, check. December release date, check.)
The mostly wordless trailer makes it hard to predict if this movie is actually good or if it's just composed of pretty images. (It should be noted that this film is an adaptation of the F. Scott Fitzgerald short story, which I have not read.) But it left me thinking it looked cool, eerie and somewhat imaginative. (It should be noted, though, that I'm a sucker for trailers in general.)
What do you guys think?
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
6 garlic bulbs - $1, same store (we love you Nam's)
Monday, July 28, 2008
"A fusion of hip-hop and bhangra with a simple chorus (“Singh is Kinng, Singh is Kinng, Singh is Kinng”), it features Snoop Dogg giving “what up to all the ladies hanging out in Mumbai” and rapping about “Ferraris, Bugattis and Maseratis.”"
Sunday, July 27, 2008
One of my favorite type of blog is the food blog, and one of the best ones I've come across lately (thanks to hjk) is Smitten Kitchen. The husband-wife blog team has a huge following, so forgive me if I'm stating old news. But in case you're not a visitor, the food photography alone makes it worth the trip. See her very helpful tips on how to make the perfect pancake here.
Saturday, July 26, 2008
Bob Herbert's latest column bring up the sad fact that John McCain is one of these people. Considering he's the contestant who uses his world affairs and military experience as a way to one-up his opponent, it's pretty disturbing how much the media has let his factual gaffes slide.
Obama has plenty of flaws (his FISA vote was more than disappointing) but at least I take comfort in knowing that he knows his basic geography -- McCain has talked about the "Iraq-Pakistan border" when they don't border each other at all. For all the scrutiny, circus stunts and invasive personal probing we put our candidates through, shouldn't knowing the ABC's of Middle Eastern politics be one of the more important tests?
Thursday, July 24, 2008
1. Black Bean and Pineapple Enchiladas
(Tastes a lot better if you make your own enchilada sauce, and do NOT pour the extra pineapple juice over the dish at the end -- it makes it much too sweet.)
2. Asian Chicken Noodle Soup
3. Pasta with Eggplant
4. Spicy Tomato Bisque
(I prefer straight up grilled cheese with this rather than the brie toast)
(images: pilsbury.com, taste.com.au, bitten.blogs.nytimes.com)