The Talking Dog

October 4, 2004, Cost Effective Defense Policies

Because distributing the vaccine (in pill form, actually) would have "cost too much money", our good old military decided to abandon a vaccination program in 1996, which allowed a virus to spread that has killed at least six military recruits, four this year.

Let's just say that there's plenty of blame to go around on this one (while the decision was made during the CLinton Adminsitration, its not lke the Bush Administration reversed it, now is it?). As usual, it reflects the belief that the most expendible component of our military was, is, and sadly will likely always be, the men and woman called upon, or who have taken it upon their own shoulders, to defend this nation.

This short-sighted bullshit is not merely reflected in the military, of course, but in all aspects of our governance. Basic housing programs are scrapped "to save money", with the resultant costs of dealing with problems of homelessness ranging from crime to epidemics orders of magnitude higher; ditto education or child-care and school lunch programs.

The mindset that holds that "taxation is immoral" (especially taxation of people who can best afford taxes and who reap the biggest rewards from our system) leads to results that I could only describe as... immoral.

This is one of them. Those responsible should be ashamed of themselves for this. Like they care.


Dear Mr. Talking Dog:

It seems that the election has again shifted back to Kerry after the debate. My guess is that Bush actually runs better as the underdog, and when he is in favor, people start to think about his record. Upon this reflection, they drift back to Kerry. Once Kerry is in favor, people start to think about his personality and they drift back to Bush. Call this idle speculation, but if Bush is the underdog in the latter part of this month, he's gonna win.

Posted by Nerman at October 4, 2004 5:36 PM

How silly, Nerman. The truth of the matter is that the polling companies and TV news networks commissioning polls have built-in bias in their methodology that produces results the media find helpful in selling the entertainment product they manufacture. "Kerry behind after RNC" is manufactured to make it seem like the televised conventions mean something. "Kerry surges after debate" ditto. "It's a horserace" is the one that seems to generate most interest in watching TV news. So, that's the polling result that's in place most often.

In fact, the numbers appear to be adding up to a solid Kerry victory. Why? Because when an incumbent is running, nearly all of the "undecideds" break for the challenger, and when Kerry was sinking last month, the undecided column was increasing--it was not all going for Bush. They've had 4 years to get to know and assess Bush, and if they liked him, they wouldn't be undecided. Therefore, in an incumbent race, it's the incumbent's percentage that is the predictor. Bush polling somewhere between 46-49 percent these days. If he manages to squeak out 49, the best he does is a repeat of 2000. Anything less than that (and that's the current high point) and he's toast.

Next debate, Bush will do better, but Kerry will also do well. Third debate, they're back to the more formal podium format and Kerry will again mop up the floor with him. Kerry will win. Kerry's showing 11-13% movement after a single debate is so unheard of it has to be suspicious. The reason is not that he had such a huge surge--it's that the pro-Bush numbers before the debate were phony.

Meanwhile, we've got lots of indications that it won't be a repeat of 2000--huge additional registrations that aren't reflected in the "likely voter" polls; significant demographic groups abandoning Bush; a get out the vote ground war that is unbelievable, unprecedented, and decidedly more organized among the Democrats; increasing "undecideds" picking up the downward Kerry swings, and . . .

last but not least, a lying, smirking, entitled, alcoholic, megalomaniacal, blaspheming, inarticulate, unintelligent, hypocritical, phony, and supremely incompetent incumbent administration.

By the way, I like the "Bush showing evidence of early stage senile dementia" theory. Some doc somewhere posited this hypothesis when he found out that Bush did not make the malapropisms and misstatements that he does now back when he was running for Gov. of Texas and debating Ann Richards. These are NEW speech glitches. The speech glitches showing up in late middle age cannot be explained by dyslexia or other LD's, according to this doc, but are a classic symptom of early onset of dementia.

Posted by mamayo at October 4, 2004 6:07 PM

Wow Mamayo (I once had nanny named MaMa Yo, I have her shot, first of many, Ha Ha Ha!!), I see length of comment, I think Talking Dog back on keyboard. I like you though.
Ha Ha Ha!!

Posted by kim jong-illin at October 4, 2004 10:44 PM

Mamayo might start showing signs of dementia herself (himself?) after Bush wins relection.

As for the vaccination program, it makes me wonder what else we should be looking to reverse from the Clinton administration. The magnitude of that effort would likely require most of Bush's second term.

Posted by Lawrence at October 5, 2004 1:20 PM

Well, to take a line from Bush, I don't have to worry about that 'cuz it's not gonna happen.

Posted by mamayo at October 5, 2004 5:02 PM

No doubt that President Clinton left much to clean up; he was ungodly lucky in many ways that things did not collapse until he was safely out of office. HOWEVER, I have no doubt that the current President may find himself better served if HIS OWN mess falls on the next guy, rather than on himself in a second term. As hard as it is to believe, this President has acted with even MORE short term expedience, and even MORE irresponsibly. The next four years won't be pretty-- no matter who is in the big chair. As I said, on the vaccine, no excuses: at least two Administration have American blood on their hands for this shortsighted bullshit.

Actually, I don't really think Bush is suffering from any kind of dementia. I DO think his knee injury has prevented him from running and has given him a paunch that wasn't there before and is contributing to the strain of what is no longer a gimme reelection that he can win simply by reciting his lines. I have seen and heard rumors that they probably have Bush on pain killers, and MAY have him on antidepressants. (Funny that getting thousands of people killed doesn't really bother him, whereas not being able to run does; but then-- its always about HIM, isn't it. Just ask him.)

The debate last week was a rude awakening for Bush: he will not be able to dismiss Kerry as "stiff" as he did Gore and have the country buy it (because we're, you know, in trouble right now) and Bush is discovering that "flip-flopper" may have run near the limits of its useful rhetorical course, and there's nothing left with 28 days to go.

I likened what we saw last Thursday to a battle between the "real" Bush (if there's anything of that left), which I'll just call "Poppy VERY Lite"-- not that Poppy was a heavyweight, but he was certainly experienced and was CAREFUL, vs. the rash "Retarded Marlboro Man". I still believe that what you see as dementia is simply the contradiction between the knowledgeable (if incompetent) Son of Poppy who knows that there actually are unscripted answers to things, and the 5 years of Karl Rove Karen Hughes Rote and Drill at appearing to be a Mentally Retarded Texan.

Not pretty.

Posted by the talking dog at October 5, 2004 5:26 PM