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"History will be kind to me, for I intend to write it."-Winston S. Churchill

"The wandering scholars were bound by no lasting loyalties, were attached by no sentiment of patriotism to the states they served and were not restricted by any feeling of ancient chivalry. They proposed and carried out schemes of the blackest treachery."-C.P. Fitzgerald.

Thursday, November 04, 2004

A Challenge from my Silent Partner 


Fugstat, my silent partner in this enterprise and a Kerry voter, has laid down a challenge for me to outline the next four years. Apparently, before the war, I told him that it would go reasonably well, but did not foresee the insurgency or the missing WMD. Natch, he wants this down on paper so he can taunt me in four years, which is understandable.


Over the next couple of days, I will look at foreign and domestic policy in two seperate posts.


A couple of explanations from memory. I thought that the invasion would go well. It did; Third Army performed at a much higher rate of fire and maneuver than its namesake did in 1944. Baghdad was taken in the course of three weeks, which was unheard of in the forties. I believe a couple of things. Bill Gertz indicated that the Russians were suspected of having removed the high explosives that were so controversial last week. It is reasonable to suppose that the KGB/GRU/FRS Kombinat sent in Spetznaz teams to remove what remained of the WMD to make sure that Russia's fingerprints were taken off Saddam's program. Second; Bremer made a critical error in disbanding the Iraqi Army and engaging in wholesale de-Ba'athification. Patton had a relatively smooth time in Bavaria in 1945 because he employed ex-Nazi's, ex-Wehrmacht, and ex-Waffen SS in places where they were needed. This should have been remembered, but was not, and has caused untold grief. But on the whole, I believe the invasion to have been worthwhile and honorable and I believe that in thirty years, people will wonder how anyone could have opposed it.


Wednesday, November 03, 2004

A Conditional Mandate 


George W. Bush has been reelected to the Presidency.

While it is all over but the lawyering, Bush has 286 Electoral Votes to Senator John F. Kerry's 253. In an act of supreme gracelessness, Kerry chose not to concede the election. He did so because of a claim that Ohio's provisional ballots have yet to be counted. However, Bush closed out Ohio last night with a lead of 144,000 votes. Most Ohio officials, from Secretary of State Ken Blackwill on down, state that it is mathematically impossible for Kerry to win the 90% of outstanding ballots that would be needed to win. As I write this, Nevada, New Mexico, and Iowa are actually still out, as the Mainstream Press loves a story and refuses to grant Bush these states, though each is securely in the Bush corner.

Expect the partisan media to begin to call on Kerry to stand down. The MSM has every interest in a Hillary candidacy in 2008, and I suspect that the media analysts will begin to show Kerry that he can't win Ohio, while NM, NV, and IA are out of reach.

Bush received a popular mandate, as his father did in 1988. The President received 58 million votes, while Kerry received 54 million. Bush won the popular vote by a 51 to 48 margin, which is enough for me to state that the President has received a conditional mandate from the people.

The Senate showed some gains for the Republicans, and a working majority appears in sight. The House shows a solid majority for the Pubbies, and a working Majority Government appears to be possible.

However, this is a conditional mandate for the President. The people want him to succeed in the War on Terror and Iraq, but I suspect that they want him to reach out to the Democrats to help him win. Bush should take the chance now to form a new War Cabinet and bring in a strong, Scoop Jackson Democrat at Defense or State. Rumsfeld should go, as I believe that he has not increased overall troop end strength to the point where the General Staff would be able to reduce the dependence on the Guard and Reserve. Condoleezza Rice will probably ascend to State or Defense, depending on what happens with Powell and Rumsfeld.

Those are my impressions as of this morning.


Tuesday, November 02, 2004

Tuesday, November 2nd, 2004 


MONTJOY:
Once more I come to know of thee, King Harry,
If for thy ransom thou wilt now compound,
Before thy most assured overthrow;
For certainly thou art so near the gulf,
Thou needs must be englutted. Besides, in mercy,
The Constable desires thee thou wilt mind
Thy followers of repentance; that their souls
May make a peaceful and a sweet retire
From off these fields, where, wretches, their poor bodies
Must lie and fester.

KING HENRY:
Who hath sent thee now?

MONTJOY:
The Constable of France.

KING HENRY:
I pray thee, bear my former answer back:
Bid them achieve me and then sell my bones.
Good God! why should they mock poor fellows thus?
The man that once did sell the lion's skin
While the beast liv'd, was kill'd with hunting him.
A many of our bodies shall no doubt
Find native graves, upon the which, I trust,
Shall witness live in brass of this day's work;
And those that leave their valiant bones in France,
Dying like men, though buried in your dunghills,
They shall be fam'd; for there the sun shall greet them,
And draw their honours reeking up to heaven;
Leaving their earthly parts to choke your clime,
The smell whereof shall breed a plague in France.
Mark then abounding valour in our English,
That being dead, like to the bullet's grazing,
Break out into a second course of mischief,
Killing in relapse of mortality.
Let me speak proudly: tell the Constable
We are but warriors for the working-day.
Our gayness and our gilt are all besmirch'd
With rainy marching in the painful field;
There's not a piece of feather in our host—
Good argument, I hope, we will not fly—
And time hath worn us into slovenry;
But, by the mass, our hearts are in the trim;
And my poor soldiers tell me, yet ere night
They'll be in fresher robes, or they will pluck
The gay new coats o'er the French soldiers' heads
And turn them out of service. If they do this—
As, if God please, they shall,—my ransom then
Will soon be levied. Herald, save thou thy labour.
Come thou no more for ransom, gentle herald.
They shall have none, I swear, but these my joints;
Which if they have as I will leave 'em them,
Shall yield them little, tell the Constable.

MONTJOY:
I shall, King Harry. And so fare thee well;
Thou never shalt hear herald any more.

[Exit.]

KING HENRY:
I fear thou'lt once more come again for ransom.

[Enter York.]

YORK:
My lord, most humbly on my knee I beg
The leading of the vaward.

KING HENRY:
Take it, brave York. Now, soldiers, march away;
And how thou pleasest, God, dispose the day!


[Exeunt.]


Monday, November 01, 2004

Last Minute Surge 

...to George W. Bush.

I am detecting movement to the President in the last hours. Every blog and post on FR, as well as the happier postings over at
the Kerry Spot are telling me that the inside numbers at BC04 are moving the President's way, and have been much of the weekend. When people in Red are banging out the word "Pennsylvania!" all over their keyboards, I start to feel real good.

Michigan is looking more and more like a Bush feint designed to keep Kerry in Detroit and away from Pittsburgh. Michigan will go for Kerry, but not by the kind of spread he needs to win the popular vote nationwide. As to Ohio, my take is that our ground game wins that state for us, while Bush runs well ahead of his 2000 totals in Florida and wins my state by 2 %.

The big surprise tomorrow? Bush's increase take in the black community: look for him to poll between 11 and 14 percent. Kerry is dead if Bush polls in the teens in Black America.

I am a lot more optimistic as I turn in this evening than I was twelve hours ago. I am simply detecting a confidence based on real numbers that is radiating from BC04, while I am not detecting same from KE04. Body language is telling: McAuliffe and Gillespie were on earlier this evening. EG gave out specific states that BC04 is doing better in, while TMC was a lot more general and had to fall back on the "new voters" scam. Ingraham and Estrich were on FOX this evening; again, Laura was a lot more confident, according to the Freepers, while Estrich was considerably less cocky than she was at this time last week.

Finally, for some real studlyman analysis of where we stand, I link to Jay Cost's The Horserace Blog. Read the whole thing, and when you're done reading that article, go to the main page and watch him debunk the rush to the challenger rule among late deciders.

Last bit of advice: show me a candidate who swears that his guy will be helped past the finish line by new voters and I will show you a loser.

Oh yeah, reviews of Innocence: Ghost in the Shell and Team America: World Police coming from Fugstat, my silent partner in this enterprise.


Away All Boats.... 


When the Amtracks crossed the line of departure as they approached Tarawa, Makin, or Saipan, that would be the cry among the officers: "Away all Boats!"

Nothing about polls here, today. I believe that Bush is ahead anywhere from two to four points nationally. The spread will mean the difference between a razor thin Electoral Vote win or a landslide in the college. We will know early.

I'm not sure that I can take Bush losing this election. I have invested a lot of emotional capital in this Administration, simply because I believe that George Bush is a Churchill for our times. Not that he has Churchill's gift for speech or the written word (his multivolume history, The Second World War remains that classic work of 20th Century history). The prospect of watching our enemies dance in the streets as John Kerry is swept to power is intolerable to me.

But we live in a Democracy; so there you have it. I'm simply betting that there is a trend towards George W. Bush, and reflects the unwillingness of Americans to change commanders in the middle of a fight. I like the mojo I'm hearing from the Bush campaign, and the undercurrent of unease I am detecting in the mainstream press. Tarrance/Lake (click on the little Battleground thingie on the bottom right of the index page, it opens up a .pdf file. Acrobat or OS X Panther Preview are our friends....) came out with their last Battleground poll, and the internals looked very nice to me, as well as GW's four point spread, and this kind of thing leads to my suspicion of a two to four point Bush advantage. Karl Rove appears to be yukking it up, as well. It is understood that Bush is playful and confident as he heads cross-country.

If I am wrong and Kerry wins, than I'll have to deal with that when the time comes. But I will not be happy, as I know that our enemies will believe that they have won a signal victory, and that the American people will have lost their nerve.

And so, like millions of other Americans, I'll shuffle across the deck, climb down the rope ladder, and take a step into the boat along with other Bush voters of like mind. We shall cross the line of departure together, and for better or worse pass into history for another four years.

YORK:
My lord, most humbly on my knee I beg
The leading of the vaward.


KING HENRY:
Take it, brave York. Now, soldiers, march away;
And how thou pleasest, God, dispose the day!


Sunday, October 31, 2004

Forty-eight Hours 


I enjoyed the movie. It was Eddie Murphy's coming-out party, and it was a template for the Action/Comedy vehicle that would come to find its own niche in Eighties and Nineties filmmaking.

And now, we are come to this. Forty-eight hours to the election. No links today, just my hunches.

The prospect of a Kerry presidency frightens me. It will be interpreted by our Islamic Fascist opponents as a monumental loss of nerve, and for that reason, I believe that Bush must be returned to office. However, there is the chance that he will be turned out of service. That said, it is the right of the People to hold elected officials to account: November 2nd will be the day of reckoning for this President, and he shall be judged one way or the other.

But this works two ways. See, the American people always get the kind of government that they deserve. The American people may hold Bush to account, but it is we who shall be held to account by history.

I am strongly for Bush because I am fearful of the price to be paid should he lose. I simply have no confidence that this character that the Democrats have put up gets the war.

I am cautiously optimistic for Tuesday. I do not believe that Kerry will do any better than Al Gore did in 2000. Gore ran a much better turnout operation that was dependent on black churches and the unions. This go-round, Kerry is dependent on 527 front groups of questionable effectiveness. In Ohio, Kerry's 527's were paid ten dollars a head for each new voter. That's how we ended up with Mary Poppins and M. Mouse being registered using Browns' Stadium as a home address. If one was a 527 trooper for America Coming Together, one had every incentive to make names up, as George Soros was paying ten dollars a head to register bodies. As I write this, Democratic phone banks are busy calling up Donks to get them to the polls. Thousands of those being called don't exist, however.

Al Gore did not have to worry about a Republican turnout operation. Kerry has to be concerned with the Republicans 72 Hour Plan today. The turnout operation in Ohio, Florida, Wisconsin, Iowa, and Minnesota will decide this election. All things being equal from 2000, I suspect that it is in these last hours that Bush's 72 Hour infantry will turn the tide.

I believe that Bush will win, but not with the mandate needed to resolve the political divide in America. The American people can be blamed, quite rightly, for this state of affairs. In 2000, they could not make up their minds. In 2004, they still cannot make up their minds. I believe that the news media has sacrificed itself on the altar of Democratic Party's political fortune and have lent its vast propaganda apparatus to Mr. Kerry's benefit. I believe that it is the efforts of that propaganda apparatus that has kept Mr. Kerry in the game, and may pull him across the finish line. The disappointing thing is to discover that for all the trauma of September 11th, half the nation, perhaps more, fails to understand the stakes at hand.

Whoever wins the election on Tuesday, I strongly suspect that it will take a catastrophic attack, perhaps along the lines of the Beslan massacre, to convince people at long last that we are in a struggle for our very lives, our liberties, and our freedom to come to God as we would wish.


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