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Showing posts from October, 2008

Obama's corporate tax cut deceit

Alan Reynolds:

In the final days of the campaign, Barack Obama continues to land the same sucker punch on taxes he used in the debates -- and John McCain continues to take it on the chin.In the last debate, Sen. Obama said, "We both want to cut taxes, the difference is who we want to cut taxes for. . . . The centerpiece of [McCain's] economic proposal is to provide $200 billion in additional tax breaks to some of the wealthiest corporations in America. Exxon Mobil, and other oil companies, for example, would get an additional $4 billion in tax breaks."That $200 billion figure is false. Yet FactCheck.org and most reporters never bothered to ask Mr. Obama where he came up with it. FactCheck.org did discover that Mr. Obama's claim about "$4 billion in tax breaks for energy companies" came from a two-page memo from the Center for American Progress Action Fund -- a political lobby headed by John Podesta, former chief of staff to Bill Clinton, with tax issues hand…

Employee was ordered to check on Joe the Plumber

Columbus Dispatch:

Vanessa Niekamp said that when was asked to run a child-support check on Samuel Joseph Wurzelbacher on Oct. 16, she thought it routine. A supervisor told her the man had contacted the state agency about his case. Niekamp didn't know she just had checked on "Joe the Plumber," who was elevated the night before to presidential politics prominence as Republican John McCain's example in a debate of an average American.The senior manager would not learn about "Joe" for another week, when she said her boss informed her and directed her to write an e-mail stating her computer check was a legitimate inquiry.The reason Niekamp said she was given for checking if there was a child-support case on Wurzelbacher does not match the reason given by the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services.Director Helen Jones-Kelley said her agency checks people who are "thrust into the public spotlight," amid suggestions they may have come into money, to s…

McCain team sees a surge of support

Washington Post:

GOP presidential nominee John McCain's advisers today said their candidate had closed the gap with Barack Obama over the past few days and would be competitive with the Democrat as voters headed to the polls Tuesday.

"We are witnessing, I believe, probably one of the greatest comebacks that you've seen since John McCain won the primary," his campaign manager, Rick Davis, said in a conference call with reporters, adding that when it came to the electoral votes needed for victory, "We believe, with the combination of our base states and the states we've been able to put into play this week, we can achieve 270."

McCain is spending nearly the entire day in Ohio, a state which remains too close to call, before heading to Virginia tonight. On Sunday the Arizona senator will go to New Hampshire, which has just four electoral votes but played a critical role in bolstering his bid for the GOP nomination, before traveling to seven cities in seven st…

Trash Stasi in UK uses anti terror laws

Daily Mail:

More than half of town halls admit using anti-terror laws to spy on families suspected of putting their rubbish out on the wrong day. Their tactics include putting secret cameras in tin cans, on lamp posts and even in the homes of 'friendly' residents. The local authorities admitted that one of their main aims was to catch householders who put their bins out early.The shocking way in which the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act - an anti-terror law - is being used was revealed through freedom of information requests made by the Daily Mail. MPs and civil liberties groups last night accused councils of using the draconian powers for trivial reasons....Tory communities spokesman Eric Pickles said: 'Under Labour, the rights and liberties of law-abiding citizens are being eroded through plans for ID cards, sinister microchip spies in bins and abuse of anti-terror laws by councils. 'Taxpayers' money is being wasted on bankrolling an army of municipal b…

Marines lost more in sports bike accidents than Iraq combat last year

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CNN:

Motorcycle accidents have killed more Marines in the past 12 months than enemy fire in Iraq, a rate that's so alarming, it has prompted top brass to call a meeting to address the issue, officials say.

Twenty-five Marines have died in motorcycle crashes since November -- all but one of them involving sport bikes that can reach speeds of well over 100 mph, according to Marine officials. In that same period, 20 Marines have been killed in action in Iraq. The 25 deaths are the highest motorcycle death toll ever for the Marine Corps. Gen. James Amos, the assistant commandant of the Marine Corps, told CNN that commanders are trying to drill down on what "we need to do to help our Marines survive on these sport bikes." "The Marines are very serious about it," he said. Watch these aren't your father's Harleys » Marine Gunnery Sgt. Art Tucker knows all too well about the dangers of sport bikes. An owner of a Kawasaki Ninja, Tucker has had two crashes, and …

McCain's chances

John Podhoretz:

This is why it might happen. Not saying it will.1) One poll has undecided voters at 14 percent on the last weekend, which means most of them probably really aren’t undecided, that they are either going to stay home or vote preponderantly for McCain and pull McCain across the finish line.2) Most pollsters are claiming the electorate this year is six to nine points more Democratic than it is Republican. That would be an unprecedented shift from four years ago, when the electorate was evenly divided, 37-37, Republican and Democratic, and a huge shift from two years ago, when it was 37-33 Democratic. A shift of this size didn’t even happen after Watergate.3) Obama frequently outpolled his final result in primaries, which might have many causes but might also indicate that he has difficulty closing the sale.4) The argument in the past two weeks has shifted, such that many undecided voters who are now paying attention are hearing about Obama’s redistributionist tendencies at …

Will Obama's rationed health care cure this problem

Fox News:

About 40 percent of women report having sexual problems, but most aren't bothered by them, according to the largest study ever published on a women's sexual health.The study, led by researchers from Massachusetts General Hospital and published in the November issue of Obstetrics & Gynecology, found that only 12 percent of women suffering from a low sex drive are actually bothered by the problem....
Identifying this problem before marriage will probably be a priority for most men, unless they don't care either. What will Obama do about this?

Great expectations

It is short. Watch it all the way to the end.

Tito the builder vs. Colmes the liberal

The tradesmen revolt against liberalism continues.

Fred talks about the stakes in the election

Obama supports ban of concealed carry

As I point out in another post, Obama says he want take your guns away, but that is only because it is not politically possible, not because he thinks it would be wrong.

'oh crap, a Democrat'

TigerHawk cartoon looks at trick of treaters who happen on a Democrat house.

Hellfire finds al Qaeda leader in Pakistan

Reuters:

A mid-level al Qaeda leader, identified as an Iraqi, was among up to 20 people killed Friday in a U.S. missile strike in northwest Pakistan, a Pakistani intelligence official said.The intelligence official identified the al Qaeda leader as Abu Akash."He is a mid-level al Qaeda man who was leading a high-profile life in Mir Wali," said the official, who declined to be identified, referring to the second biggest town in the North Waziristan region on the Afghan border.Two missiles were fired by a pilotless "drone" aircraft into a house in Mir Ali, a major sanctuary for foreign Islamist militants including Arabs, and Central Asians, another intelligence official said.A witness said the house was ablaze after the strike...."He is an al Qaeda man but was not among the top hierarchy. He was involved in carrying out IED blasts in Afghanistan," said the security official, referring to improvised explosive devices, or roadside bombs.Good riddance.

Any al Q…

A message from the folks in the media

Peter Robinson:

Hi. My name is Anonymous, and I'm a reporter in the mainstream media. Like a lot of my colleagues, I'm nervous.In the newsroom this morning, I spent an hour running from cubicle to cubicle. Everyone dismissed the new polls showing the race had tightened. "Outliers," they said. When reporters call some polls "outliers," it's not a good sign. I'm telling you, people are nervous.You see, we in the mainstream media know the very term is a misnomer. "Mainstream?" Us? When Slate, the e-zine owned by the Washington Post Co. (nyse: WPO - news - people ), published a survey this week revealing that its staff favored Barack Obama over John McCain by 55-to-1, every "mainstream" reporter I know shared the same reaction. It wasn't surprise. It was irritation.What did Slate think it was doing? We know we're to the left of the country, but did Slate want everybody to find out? …

More on the incurious media

Victor Davis Hanson:

There have always been media biases and prejudices. Everyone knew that Walter Cronkite, from his gilded throne at CBS news, helped to alter the course of the Vietnam War, when, in the post-Tet depression, he prematurely declared the war unwinnible. Dan Rather’s career imploded when he knowingly promulgated a forged document that impugned the service record of George W. Bush. We’ve known for a long time — from various polling, and records of political donations of journalists themselves, as well as surveys of public perceptions — that the vast majority of journalists identify themselves as Democratic, and liberal in particular.

Yet we have never quite seen anything like the current media infatuation with Barack Obama, and its collective desire not to raise key issues of concern to the American people. Here were four areas of national interest that were largely ignored.

For years an axiom of the liberal establishment was the need for public campaign financing — and the…

Incurious media writes brief for Obama

David Limbaugh:

Quoted material removed. You may read the original at the link above.There is much more.

David raises several issues the media has failed to pursue. They tend to act like advocates writing briefs on Obama's behalf or against his opponents rather than someone truly interested in finding the facts. As I have noted before, they are more interested in finding the material for a dismissive paragraph about his opponents than facts about him. As people whose job is to put facts in perspective, they have failed.

Palin appealing in Pennsylvania

Byron York:

If John McCain wins Pennsylvania on Tuesday — a question that’s shaping up as perhaps the most critical of the campaign — it will be because of places like this. Situated on the border between Cumberland and Franklin counties, Shippensburg is in the south-central part of the state. Like other towns in the area, it’s between 90 and 95 percent white; about 15 to 20 percent of people over the age of 25 have a bachelor’s degree or higher; and the median household income is about $45,000.

Voters in the Democratic primary in this area chose Hillary Clinton over Barack Obama by about a two-to-one margin. Just to the east, Obama did a bit better. To the west, Clinton cleared 70 percent. In 2004, George W. Bush won 71 percent of the vote in Franklin County and 64 percent in Cumberland.

Which is why Sarah Palin has come to Shippensburg, to Heiges Field House on the campus of tiny Shippensburg University. It’s freezing outside, or at least it feels like it’s freezing in the high wind, b…

Palin not fading away

Eugene Robinson:

My view of Sarah Palin has changed in the two months since John McCain named her as his running mate. I'm guessing that McCain's view of Palin may be changing, too, and not entirely in a good way.

I thought Palin was a lightweight; she's not. I thought she was an ingenue; she is, but only as long as her claws are sheathed. I thought she was bewildered and star-struck at her sudden elevation to national prominence; if she ever was, she isn't anymore. I thought she was nothing but raw political talent and unrealistic ambition; it turns out that she has impressive political skills. I thought she was destined to become nothing more than a historical footnote; I now think that Democrats underestimate her at their peril. At this point, only McCain's most loyal lieutenants could have been surprised when Palin told ABC's Elizabeth Vargas that she's already looking beyond Tuesday's election toward her own political future. Asked whether she would…

What will you get with Obama

Charles Krauthammer:

...

(1) Card check, meaning the abolition of the secret ballot in the certification of unions in the workplace. Large men will come to your house at night and ask you to sign a card supporting a union. You will sign. (2) The so-called Fairness Doctrine -- a project of Nancy Pelosi and leading Democratic senators -- a Hugo Chavez-style travesty designed to abolish conservative talk radio. (3) Judges who go beyond even the constitutional creativity we expect from Democratic appointees. Judges chosen according to Obama's publicly declared criterion: "empathy" for the "poor or African-American or gay or disabled or old" -- in a legal system historically predicated on the idea of justice entirely blind to one's station in life. (4) An unprecedented expansion of government power. Yes, I know. It has already happened. A conservative government has already partially nationalized the mortgage industry, the insurance industry and nine of the lar…

Coersive restribution vs. sharing toys

David Hirsanyi:

Barack Obama is going to fix the economy by "spreading the wealth around"? Now, I'm not attempting to demonize Obama, God forbid. It's just that, as we all know, that's what Obama told Joe the Plumber. Obama laughs off the charge of socialist behavior — and to be fair, socialism isn't the precise term to affix to his ideas. It's more like Robin Hood economics. On a recent campaign stop, Obama joked that, by the end of the week, McCain would be accusing him "of being a secret communist because I shared my toys in kindergarten." A funny line. But, of course, Obama's lofty intellect must comprehend the fundamental difference between sharing your G.I. Joe with a friend and having a bully snatch your G.I. Joe for the collective, prepubescent good. It's the difference between coercion and free association and trade. In practical terms, it's the difference between government cheese and a meal at Ruth's Chris. Now, I…

Obama throws Washington Times off plane

Washington Times:

The Washington Times, which has covered the Barack Obama campaign from the start, was kicked off the Democrat's campaign plane for the final 72 hours of the race. The Obama campaign informed the newspaper Thursday evening of its decision, which came two days after the Times editorial page endorsed Senator John McCain over Mr. Obama. The Times editorial page runs completely independent of the news department. "This feels like the journalistic equivalent of redistributing the wealth, we spent hundreds of thousands of dollars covering Senator Obama's campaign, traveling on his plane, and taking our turn in the reporter's pool, only to have our seat given away to someone else in the last days of the campaign," said Washington Times Executive Editor John Solomon. "I hope the candidate that promises to unite America isn't using a litmus test to determine who gets to cover his campaign." The Times formally protested the decision, notin…

Gee, you think so?

From the Houston Chronicle:

Dropping demand for oil could keep fuel prices rolling back
Isn't that what happens in a free market? I think it is also safe to predict that the government will not be legislating a bailout of the oil business.

The fact is that liberals are still anti energy in all forms and especially oil forms. That is why the price will eventually go back up.

Obama will be as liberal as he can get away with

Stuart Taylor:

When John McCain and many other Republicans ask, "Who is the real Barack Obama?" there is an implication that maybe he is somehow sinister or extremist.I don't believe that. But I do think that there are two very different Obamas. Both are extraordinarily intelligent, serene under pressure, and driven by an admirable social conscience -- albeit as willing to deploy deception as the next politician. But while the first Obama would be a well-meaning failure, the second could become a great president.An ultraliberal in moderate garb? The first Obama has sometimes seemed eager to engineer what he called "redistribution of wealth" in a 2001 radio interview, along with the more conventional protectionism, job preferences, and other liberal Democratic dogmas featured in his campaign. I worry that he might go beyond judiciously regulating our free enterprise system's all-too-apparent excesses and stifle it under the dead hand of government bureaucracy…

Bad news for Palestinians from 3000 years ago

CNN:

An Israeli archaeologist has discovered what he says is the earliest-known Hebrew text, found on a shard of pottery that dates to the time of King David from the Old Testament, about 3,000 years ago.

Professor Yosef Garfinkel of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem says the inscribed pottery shard -- known as an ostracon -- was found during excavations of a fortress from the 10th century BC. Carbon dating of the ostracon, along with pottery analysis, dates the inscription to time of King David, about a millennium earlier than the famous Dead Sea Scrolls, the university said. The shard contains five lines of text divided by black lines and measures 15 by 15 centimeters, or about 6 inches square. Archaeologists have yet to decipher the text, but initial interpretation indicates it formed part of a letter and contains the roots of the words "judge," "slave," and "king," according to the university. That may indicate it was a legal text, which archaeologist…

Intercepting the Somali pirate motherships

Reuters:

International naval forces operating off the coast of Somalia must be prepared to take on pirate ‘mother ships' if they are to stem rampant piracy, a senior maritime official said on Thursday."We want pre-emptive action against the mother ships before the pirates carry out a hijacking," said Captain Pottengal Mukundan, director of the London-based International Maritime Bureau, which monitors international piracy, referring to the ships pirates use as bases from which to launch attacks."The positions of the mother ships are generally known. What we would like to see is the naval vessels going to interdict them, searching them and removing any arms on board. That would at least force the pirates to go back to Somalia to pick up more arms before they could come back again," he told Reuters in an interview....But the laws governing what navies can do to take on the pirates are complex. Only if pirates are caught in the act of piracy -- actually boarding a …

Haditha marine talks back to Murtha

Vets for Freedom must be one of those "outside" groups Murtha is complaining about.

Murtha getting desperate

From The Hill:

Murtha pleas for $1 million after racism comments
He is complaining about outside money helping his opponent. Apparently he is not complaining about the help he has given his opponent by calling his voters racist. There was also the help he gave his opponent by calling Marines murderers.

Obama's tax plan does not add up

CBS News:

Without question, the Barack Obama infomercial served as a very slick and powerful recitation of the biggest promises he's made as a presidential candidate. But the very bigness of his ideas is the problem: he seems blind to the concept his numbers don't add up.

Let's start with his highly suspect, and widely discredited, claim that he can find federal "spending cuts beyond the costs" of his promises. Very few independent economists believe he has identified the savings needed to offset his remarkable list of tax credits, tax cuts and spending pledges.

Fact: Even if you believe Obama intends to fix health care, most independent analysts say the cost is massive - $1.2 trillion over ten years, according to the highly respected Lewin Group. When the new Congress wakes up next year to a $1 trillion deficit, and answers the overwhelming new demands for another stimulus package, will the leadership really bite on a health care reform package that digs the defici…

Democrat generic lead slips further

The Hill:

Republicans have cut the Democratic advantage in the generic ballot question in half over the past week, according to a new GW-Battleground poll.

Democrats now lead by four points, their slimmest lead in more than three years. A week ago, according to the George Washington University poll, their advantage was eight points. Meantime, the congressional approval rating remained low, at 19 percent, up two points from the previous poll.

...
There are plenty of reasons for Democrats to be unpopular. Their congressional record is not popular and is actively opposed by a majority of Americans. In several races Democrats who won in 2006 are in trouble in 2008. Next Tuesday is a great opportunity to vote against Democrats. I will do that with enthusiasm.

Is Obama answer to al Qaeda's prayer?

Reuters:

An al Qaeda leader has called for President George W. Bush and the Republicans to be "humiliated," without endorsing any party in the upcoming U.S. presidential election, according to a video posted on the Internet."O God, humiliate Bush and his party, O Lord of the Worlds, degrade and defy him," Abu Yahya al-Libi said at the end of sermon marking the Muslim feast of Eid al-Fitr, in a video posted on the Internet....The remarks were the first comments from a leading al Qaeda figure referring, albeit indirectly, to the U.S. elections. Muslim clerics often end sermons by calling on God to guide and support Muslims and help defeat their enemies....
I suspect they are afraid a direct endorsement will result in a backlash. Can there be any doubt after this prayer that they see Obama as the answer? As much as I think Obama will be a very poor president, I am also sure al Qaeda will be disappointed in him too.

ACORN's connection to the Obama campaign

John Fund:

Acorn, the liberal "community organizing" group that claims it will deploy 15,000 get-out-the-vote workers on Election Day, can't stay out of the news.The FBI is investigating its voter registration efforts in several states, amid allegations that almost a third of the 1.3 million cards it turned in are invalid. And yesterday, a former employee of Acorn testified in a Pennsylvania state court that the group's quality-control efforts were "minimal or nonexistent" and largely window dressing. Anita MonCrief also says that Acorn was given lists of potential donors by several Democratic presidential campaigns, including that of Barack Obama, to troll for contributions.The Obama campaign denies it "has any ties" to Acorn, but Mr. Obama's ties are extensive. In 1992 he headed a registration effort for Project Vote, an Acorn partner at the time. He did so well that he was made a top trainer for Acorn's Chicago conferences. In 1995, he r…

The polling explosion

Karl Rove:

There has been an explosion of polls this presidential election. Through yesterday, there have been 728 national polls with head-to-head matchups of the candidates, 215 in October alone. In 2004, there were just 239 matchup polls, with 67 of those in October. At this rate, there may be almost as many national polls in October of 2008 as there were during the entire year in 2004.Some polls are sponsored by reputable news organizations, others by publicity-eager universities or polling firms on the make. None have the scientific precision we imagine.For example, academics gathered by the American Political Science Association at the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel in Washington on Aug. 31, 2000, to make forecasts declared that Al Gore would be the winner. Their models told them so. Mr. Gore would receive between 53% and 60% of the two-party vote; Gov. George W. Bush would get between just 40% and 47%. Impersonal demographic and economic forces had settled the contest, they said. T…

The failrure of the changes Obama wants

Thomas Sowell:

Some elections are routine, some are important and some are historic. If Senator John McCain wins this election, it will probably go down in history as routine. But if Senator Barack Obama wins, it is more likely to be historic-- and catastrophic. Once the election is over, the glittering generalities of rhetoric and style will mean nothing. Everything will depend on performance in facing huge challenges, domestic and foreign. Performance is where Barack Obama has nothing to show for his political career, either in Illinois or in Washington. Policies that he proposes under the banner of "change" are almost all policies that have been tried repeatedly in other countries-- and failed repeatedly in other countries. Politicians telling businesses how to operate? That's been tried in countries around the world, especially during the second half of the 20th century. It has failed so often and so badly that even socialist and communist governments were freei…

Why offer confidentiality about a public meeting?

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CNN:

Gov. Sarah Palin on Wednesday said Sen. Barack Obama has ties to a Columbia University professor who she said is "a former spokesperson for the Palestinian Liberation Organization."

The Obama campaign said on its Web site that "ugly insinuations about Barack Obama's relationship with a former neighbor and university colleague ... are completely false." The professor has denied he was a spokesman for the Palestine Liberation Organization. Palin said her assertion "is not negative campaigning to call someone out on their record." "It seems that there is yet another radical professor from the neighborhood who spent a lot of time with Barack Obama going back several years," Palin said at an event in Bowling Green, Ohio. "This is important because his associate, Rashid Khalidi ... in addition to being a political ally of Barack Obama, he's a former spokesperson for the Palestinian Liberation Organization." Watch Palin say the L…

The tape Obama does not want seen

NY Times:

Alleging media bias in favor of Democrats, Senator John McCain and Gov. Sarah Palin seized Wednesday on The Los Angeles Times’s refusal to release a five-year-old videotape of Barack Obama at a dinner honoring a Palestinian rights advocate.

The video shows a gathering in Chicago for Rashid Khalidi, a teacher, writer and Obama friend who is critical of Israel. Mr. Obama spoke at the dinner, where other speakers likened Israel and Israelis to terrorists. The McCain campaign said the tape could show how Mr. Obama reacted to anti-Israel remarks.Mr. Khalidi, now a professor of Arab studies at Columbia University, opposes Israel’s occupation of territory it seized in the 1967 war and has defended Palestinian resistance to the occupation. He advised a Palestinian delegation at a 1991 peace conference and has written several books on the Middle East.The Los Angeles Times said it had been given the video on the condition that it not be shown to anyone else. In an article published in A…

The biometric battle space in Iraq

Washington Post:

For thousands of Iranians, traveling to Iraq through this bustling, dusty gateway now requires stopping at small white trailers where U.S. officials take their photos and record scans of their irises and fingerprints. U.S. officials collect the biometric information of virtually all "military-age men" in an effort to stop the entry of weapons and fighters. Since officials began gathering biometric data at border posts this spring, more than 150,000 individuals have been scanned and photographed. Their records have been added to a burgeoning database that also includes biometric information about Iraqis and foreigners employed on American bases, as well as Iraqis who are detained or interrogated by U.S. forces. American officials use the data to identify people on wanted lists, search for suspicious travel patterns, and look for matches in a separate database that includes fingerprints collected after bombings and other attacks. "It's a bad situatio…

Dear Mr. Obama

BBC:

"Dear Mr Obama having spent 12 months in Iraq theatre I can promise you it's not a mistake." At 1 minute 55 seconds, it's short, simple and powerful. "When you call the Iraqi war a mistake you disrespect the service and sacrifice of everyone who has died promoting freedom... Because you do not understand or appreciate these principles Sir, I am supporting Senator John McCain for president." The film, titled Dear Mr Obama, is the most-viewed election-related video on the YouTube website, attracting more than 11 million hits. Made by an Iraq war returnee, it's an example of how ordinary Americans have used the website to get their voice heard.
...


I think I have posted this video before, but it is worth seeing again. It is powerful enough to get worldwide attention and be largely ignored by the Obama media.

Obama's 'missing' relatives in US

Times:

Barack Obama has lived one version of the American Dream that has taken him to the steps of the White House. But a few miles from where the Democratic presidential candidate studied at Harvard, his Kenyan aunt and uncle, immigrants living in modest circumstances in Boston, have a contrasting American story. Zeituni Onyango, the aunt so affectionately described in Mr Obama’s best-selling memoir Dreams from My Father, lives in a disabled-access flat on a rundown public housing estate in South Boston. A second relative believed to be the long-lost “Uncle Omar” described in the book was beaten by armed robbers with a “sawed-off rifle” while working in a corner shop in the Dorchester area of the city. He was later evicted from his one-bedroom flat for failing to pay $2,324.20 (£1,488) arrears, according to the Boston Housing Court.
The US press has repeatedly rehearsed Mr Obama’s extraordinary odyssey, but the other side of the family’s American experience has only been revealed i…

State employee checks on Joe extensive

Columbus Dispatch:

A state agency has revealed that its checks of computer systems for potential information on "Joe the Plumber" were more extensive than it first acknowledged. Helen Jones-Kelley, director of the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, disclosed today that computer inquiries on Samuel Joseph Wurzelbacher were not restricted to a child-support system.The agency also checked Wurzelbacher in its computer systems to determine whether he was receiving welfare assistance or owed unemployment compensation taxes, she wrote.Jones-Kelley made the revelations in a letter to Ohio Senate President Bill M. Harris, R-Ashland, who demanded answers on why state officials checked out Wurzelbacher.Harris called the multiple records checks "questionable" and said he awaits more answers. "It's kind of like Big Brother is looking in your pocket," he said....Republicans have painted the checks on Wurzelbacher as a politically motivated bid by Democrats …

Texas poll shows McCain, Cornyn as winners

Houston Chronicle:

A University of Texas poll to be released today shows Republican presidential candidate John McCain and GOP Sen. John Cornyn leading by comfortable margins in Texas, as expected. But the statewide survey of 550 registered voters has one very surprising finding: 23 percent of Texans are convinced that Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama is a Muslim. Obama is a Christian who was embroiled in a controversy earlier this year about his two-decade membership in Chicago's Trinity United Church of Christ. Yet just 45 percent of those polled identified the Illinois senator as a Protestant.The Obama-is-a-Muslim confusion is caused by fallacious Internet rumors and radio talk-show gossip. McCain went so far at one of his town hall meetings to grab a microphone from a woman who claimed that Obama was an Arab.The Texas numbers are unusual because most national polls show that just 5 to 10 percent of Americans still believe Obama is a Muslim — less than half the numbe…