Video: Another John McCain Rally, And More Threats To Barack Obama

This might be the worst video I have yet seen this fall.  It is wretched.  When someone pretends to hold a gun and fire…….these people are Republicans and rotten to the core.

Barack Obama’s Grandmother Dies After Battle With Cancer

Hours before the election Barack Obama has lost his grandmother.  This is so sad and tragic.  It just does not seem fair.

“She was the cornerstone of our family, and a woman of extraordinary accomplishment, strength, and humility,” their statement said.

“She was the person who encouraged and allowed us to take chances. She was proud of her grandchildren and great-grandchildren and left this world with the knowledge that her impact on all of us was meaningful and enduring. Our debt to her is beyond measure.”

Obama and Soetoro-Ng asked that donations be made for the search for a cure for cancer in lieu of flowers. A small private ceremony will be held “at a later date.”

Dunham passed away peacefully at her home shortly before midnight Sunday night (5 a.m. ET), campaign spokeswoman Jen Psaki told CNN. She said Obama learned of her death around 8 a.m.

The Democratic presidential candidate left the campaign trail on October 23 and flew to Honolulu, Hawaii, to spend the day with Dunham, whose health deteriorated after she suffered a broken hip.

His wife, Michelle Obama, filled in for him at events in Columbus and Akron, Ohio, on October 24.

Obama said in an interview taped for that day’s “Good Morning America” that Dunham had been “inundated” with flowers and messages from strangers who read about her in Obama’s 1995 book, “Dreams From My Father.”

“Maybe she is getting a sense of long-deserved recognition toward the end of her life,” he said.

The candidate resumed his campaign on October 25.

Obama has spoken about his grandmother often on the stump, talking about what an integral figure she was in his youth and how she struggled against the glass ceiling in her career. He and his family traveled to Hawaii in August to visit her.

“She’s the one who put off buying a new car or a new dress for herself so that I could have a better life,” he said in his acceptance speech at the Democratic National Convention. “She poured everything she had into me. And although she can no longer travel, I know that she’s watching tonight, and that tonight is her night as well.”

Book Proves Conservatives Wrong About ‘Liberal’ Colleges Indoctrinating Students

I have long found anti-intellectualism from conservatives, and resulting effects, disturbing.  Over the past decades the attempt to label colleges and universities as liberal places where indoctrination takes place has always made me cringe.  Not understanding that education leads to enlightenment has long confounded me.  Now there is research to show that conservatives have no argument in this arena.

But now there is a new book that puts to rest the fears that some have over education.

An article of faith among conservative critics of American universities has been that liberal professors politically indoctrinate their students. This conviction not only fueled the culture wars but has also led state lawmakers to consider requiring colleges to submit reports to the government detailing their progress in ensuring “intellectual diversity,” prompted universities to establish faculty positions devoted to conservatism and spurred the creation of a network of volunteer watchdogs to monitor “political correctness” on campuses.

But a handful of new studies have found such worries to be overwrought. Three sets of researchers recently concluded that professors have virtually no impact on the political views and ideology of their students.

If there has been a conspiracy among liberal faculty members to influence students, “they’ve done a pretty bad job,” said A. Lee Fritschler, a professor of public policy at George Mason University and an author of the new book “Closed Minds? Politics and Ideology in American Universities” (Brookings Institution Press).

The notion that students are induced to move leftward “is a fantasy,” said Jeremy D. Mayer, another of the book’s authors. When it comes to shaping a young person’s political views, “it is really hard to change the mind of anyone over 15,” said Mr. Mayer, who did extensive research on faculty and students.

“Parents and family are the most important influence,” followed by the news media and peers, he said. “Professors are among the least influential.”

A study of nearly 7,000 students at 38 institutions published in the current PS: Political Science and Politics, the journal of the American Political Science Association, as well as a second study that has been accepted by the journal to run in April 2009, both reach similar conclusions.

“There is no evidence that an instructor’s views instigate political change among students,” Matthew Woessner and April Kelly-Woessner, a husband-and-wife team of political scientists who have frequently conducted research on politics in higher education, write in that second study.

A Picture Of Why We Vote For President

We all have seen the advertisement on television with a father and small son sitting on a couch, as the announcer alerts us to the fact we do not buy life insurance for us (parents), we buy if for them (children).  The idea of protecting, and looking out for, our children is more than just a concept for families.  In well-adjusted societies that way of thinking translates to the larger national family, which includes our communities across the country.  It also should include thinking globally, and taking into consideration how our actions impact the larger world in which we live.

Marie, age two, is perhaps the prettiest little girl that I have seen in the past few years.  She lives just a couple houses from us, though her real home is in France.  Her father is working on a geological project at the University of Madison.  So it is not uncommon to see my favorite little child in the neighborhood, either exploring the garden gnomes, or inspecting our political sign.

She is the face that comes to my mind when I think about the election, and the long-term impact of our national decision.  Though she is not an American, our choice between Barack Obama and John McCain will have enormous impact on her while growing up in France.  As it will every other child around the globe.  Will the United States lead the world in stopping global warming, and insure that new technological know-how will be provided to all countries to combat this problem?  Will there again be a diplomatic hand extended around the world so that international flare-ups do not become full blown wars with massive repercussions.  Will new initiatives and hopes create a more peaceful world so that Marie’s children might have a world far better than ours?

To often this election debate has centered around how much more money will be in the wallet after cashing a paycheck. Granted, that is an important issue, and merits discussion.  But I suggest that looking into the eyes of Marie creates a whole other series of even bigger issues that might prompt a more reflective view of how important this election is on Tuesday.

When we cast a ballot for our President, it also impacts the world.

Keep Marie’s face in your thoughts on Election Day.

Is A Barack Obama Blow-Out About To Happen?

While I am still holding to a more conservative view of the political landscape, the polling tonight is just amazing to consider.  I too, hope for a mandate and a transformational election, better known as a realignment, in order to restore some sanity to a whole host of policies.  So while I am still not convinced of a blow-out, consider what others have to say.

CBS Reports.

With two days left until the presidential election, Barack Obama continues to lead John McCain by 13 points among likely voters, 54 percent to 41 percent, a new CBS News poll finds. The margin in the new poll, released Sunday, is identical to that in a CBS News poll released Saturday.

As the number of undecided voters has dwindled, so has the number that says their minds can still change. More than nine in 10 of each candidate’s voters now say they have made up their minds about who to vote for and are not likely to change. Just seven percent of Obama voters and 8 percent of McCain voters say they still might change their minds.

ABC Reports

Barack Obama, closing strongly in the campaign’s final weekend, matched his best advantage over John McCain to date in the latest ABC News/Washington Post tracking poll. Economic concerns are pushing his support beyond the Democratic base to unusual levels in the political center and even among more traditionally Republican groups.

Beyond his advantage on the economy and taxes, Obama’s being boosted by sustained unusually high levels of enthusiasm among his supporters, and by his ability to remain competitive with McCain in trust to handle a crisis – cutting to the “experience” question that has been Obama’s greatest risk.

Overall, 54 percent of likely voters support Obama, 43 percent McCain in ABC/Post interviews the past four nights, exactly where the race was a week and a half ago.

Support for the candidates has run in a narrow band for weeks. Obama’s received 52 to 54 percent support in every ABC/Post poll since Oct. 11; McCain’s been between 43 and 45 percent in that same period. Obama, moreover, hasn’t gone below 50 percent support, nor McCain above 46 percent, since just after the Republican convention.

Part of Obama’s advantage comes from his campaign’s ability to turn out early voters; 27 percent say they’ve already cast their ballots, a strongly pro-Obama group, 59-40 percent. Among first-time voters, moreover, Obama has a nearly 2-1 advantage; many of them are young, and young voters are his strongest supporters.

Why You Should Vote For Barack Obama

Here are some basic reasons why your vote should be cast for Barack Obama.