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McCain/Palin's Last Gasp: Double Negative

From the October 20 issue of The New Yorker comes Hendrik Hertzberg's Beyond The Palin, a compelling critique of Republican negativism. Mentioned is their attempt to smear Obama as a terrorist, raising questions about his association with Bill Ayers, a college professor and pillar of the Chicago education-reform establishment who was once a Weatherman but has since renounced his New Left affiliations of the late 60s (a time, by the way, when Obama was 8 years old and living with his mother in Indonesia).

After October @ Elizabeth Dee Gallery, October 18 - November 22, 2008

After October

Elizabeth Dee Gallery, 545 West 20th Street, New York, NY 10011
212 924 7545

October 18 - November 22, 2008

Andreas Bunte, Duncan Campbell, Thea Djordjadze, Matias Faldbakken, Claire Fontaine, Luca Frei, Cyprien Gaillard and Pia Rönicke

Organized by Tim Saltarelli

Opening Reception: Saturday, October 18, 6-8 pm

Call Me Ishmael, or Plus ça change ...

Chapter One: Loomings

Ishmael introduces himself, considers the Fates, or Providence, and elects to embark on a whaling voyage.

I should now take it into my head to go on a whaling voyage; this the invisible police officer of the Fates, who has the constant surveillance of me, and secretly dogs me, and influences me in some unaccountable way- he can better answer than any one else. And, doubtless, my going on this whaling voyage, formed part of the grand programme of Providence that was drawn up a long time ago. It came in as a sort of brief interlude and solo between more extensive performances. I take it that this part of the bill must have run something like this:

"Grand Contested Election for the Presidency of the United States. "WHALING VOYAGE BY ONE ISHMAEL." "BLOODY BATTLE IN AFFGHANISTAN."

McCain/Palin's Last Gasp: Rabble Rousing, Race Baiting, Death Threats Against Obama

Washington Post, October 4: McCain Plans Fiercer Strategy

Sen. John McCain and his Republican allies are readying a newly aggressive assault on Sen. Barack Obama's character, believing that to win in November they must shift the conversation back to questions about the Democrat's judgment, honesty and personal associations, several top Republicans said.
With just a month to go until Election Day, McCain's team has decided that its emphasis on the senator's biography as a war hero, experienced lawmaker and straight-talking maverick is insufficient to close a growing gap with Obama.

Where's The Bottom?

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On October 10, 2008 the Dow Jones dropped 697 points in the first six minutes of trading, rebounded to positive territory after the first half hour, then fell again and maintained a loss of several hundred points (up to 520) for most of the session. In the final half hour it rallied for a gain of 322 which it could not sustain, lurching negative, positive, negative, and finally closing 128 down.

It was the most volatile day in the 112 year history of the index, over a thousand points between high and low. And it followed six straight losing sessions for October 2008, including several daily drops of 500 - 700 points, during which the Dow lost 22 percent of its value.

This has been the worst week ever for the Dow, which closed at 8451, its lowest level since April 2003. On October 9, 2007, just a year ago, the index set an all-time high of 14165. Five years of gains have effectively been erased in the past year, with half of these losses coming in the last week.

PBS Poll: Is Sarah Palin qualified to be Vice President?

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PBS created an online poll on September 5, asking whether Sarah Palin was qualified to hold the office of Vice President. The poll results will eventually be reported on PBS and broadcast in the mainstream media. They could potentially influence undecided voters in swing states.

In the interest of user privacy, PBS did not at first implement cookie registration, allowing multiple votes to be placed from one computer. The entire site soon began to experience system overload due to massive accessing of the poll. When it became clear that right wing activists were abusing the situation, voting multiple times and flooding the site with YES votes in an effort to reverse an initial NO majority, PBS implemented a cookie registration system on September 23. Now it is one computer, one vote.

This from the PBS website:

So, is the Palin poll now "scientific"? Absolutely not. It is still subject to large scale efforts on the left and the right to mobilize people to vote. The poll has become something of a Rorschach test, a tiny political marker in a tightly contested race. Over the past two weeks, the results of the poll see-sawed back and forth from a majority saying "No" to a majority saying, "Yes". At the moment the single-voter system was implemented, it was close to a tie: 50% say Sarah Palin is qualified to serve as Vice President, and 48% say no. Those results, in my view, are actually a measure of the mobilization and manipulation efforts by partisans on both sides. Now it will be all about mobilization, and less about manipulation. Blogs on the left and right are circulating viral emails with the exact address of the poll.

I, for one, am happy to be mobilizing on the left. So, if you feel Palin is not qualified, if you resent the free ride she is being given courtesy of the mad dog right, then please do two things -- it only takes 20 seconds.

* Click on the site and vote yourself. Vote NO.

* Send the link to every Obama-Biden voter you know. Publish it in the blogosphere. Urge others to vote and then to pass it on.

The country you save could be your own!!

Vacation in Hell, courtesy of John McCain?

I received a multi-forwarded email yesterday, an account of a vacation in Fiji attributed to a professor of literature in California, and amounting to a character assassination of Senator John McCain, the Republican candidate for President.

That the text rings true is no doubt based on McCain already seeming a bit "high strung", and to the heightened partisanship of this election year. But I have since been informed that it might well be an internet hoax.

I contacted the purported writer of the letter by email, asking for confirmation before posting it here. Her answer, appended below, confirms the various confusions, but also states "the account is not necessarily false", and that I should "pass this information on to anyone interested in this story." I have acceded to her wishes.

My Vacation with John McCain

On Martha Rosler's "Great Power" at Mitchell-Innes & Nash, Chelsea

A response to the Jerry Saltz review in New York Magazine.

Martha Rosler has typically been too pat and jejune in her politics, and in her assumption that it makes for good art, and Jerry Saltz correctly nails the rehash aspects of the current Mitchell-Innes & Nash show. The word "on the street" (in this case West 26th) is that Rosler is breaking no new ground, merely updating and enhancing both the scale and production values of her familiar collaging of images. Once they were taken from the Vietnam battlefield and conflated with magazine clippings from the home front: fashion models, washing machines, living room sofas and credenzas, Playboy nudes. Now they include some "relevant" Iraqi/Afghani footage - burkas and amputees - and benefit from Photoshop. Rosler might have succeeded in "bringing the war home" in 1968, but as Thomas Wolfe said, "You Can't Go Home Again". The epithet "pretty war porn" might be a bit harsh, but it is not that far from the mark.

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