|Trying out a new feature for the blog, which will make morning blogging more efficient on my end, and hopefully provide a jumpstart to your morning read. Enjoy!
The New York Times hits Barack Obama with a story about Obama advisers Tom Daschle and Jason Grumet's ethanol ties (forecast: Obama favors subsidies, wins Iowa in November. All politics is "economically local"...) On this one, I think McCain may be right about one thing: the U.S. should stop tariffing sugar ethanol out of the market. It's cheaper, produces more energy, and in Brazil at least, it's working ... Still, Obama is probably right on the politics, as this statement from the campaign makes clear:
“It does not serve our national and economic security to replace imported oil with Brazilian ethanol,” he argued.It's the domestic production and jobs, stupid, though once he's in office, hopefully Obama will broaden his view. Sugarcane ethanol imports could not only help Brazil, it could be a lifeline for another country where sugar grows: Haiti.
Also in the Times: the Border Partrol is looking for a few good (black) men ... and George Carlin is dead at age 71.
The Washington Post follows up last night's damning "60 Minutes" piece on America's Middle East TV network, al-Hurra, one of many disastrous Bush administration attempts to "win the hearts and minds" of Muslims around the world.
Also in the Post, Obama seeks to close the Phil Gramm/Enron loophole, and while the rest of the nation squeals in pain, Houston laps up the benefits of $4.10 a gallon gas. But the story the cable chatters will probably spend most of their time on today will be yet another Obama reinvention story, this time by Dan Balz and Ann Kornblut.
The Miami Herald runs down this weekends U.S. Conference of Mayors summit, which featured two major ships passing in the night: Barack Obama on Saturday and Bill Clinton on Sunday. Clinton was mum on the election, but he did talk up the benefits of growing green.
The Boston Globe reports on John McCain's $300 million prize for whoever can build a better car battery. One question: where in the world are we getting the $300 million in a recession? And it wouldn't be a McCain plan without money for Big Bizness:
In addition, a so-called Clean Car Challenge would provide U.S. automakers with a $5,000 tax credit for every zero-carbon emissions car they develop and sell.
And there you go. Meanwhile, the Globe proffers a long puff piece
by Sasha Issenberg on John McCain's war experience and how it shaped his present views. The piece skims past his contentious relations with POW/MIA groups who believed that U.S. troops remained alive in Vietnam, even skipping a notorious episode in which McCain reduced a mother of an MIA soldier to tears
during televised hearings in which he lived up to his Academy nickname, "McNasty." The Globe also fails to mention the ambivalence
, and even downright hostility
, that some Vietnam vets continue to feel about McCain (yes, there is an anti-McCain 527.
) I doubt such information would have been left out of an article on John Kerry, and I doubt that the press will pursue the issue, given the media's reluctance to replay the Swift Boat episode from 2004 and general reverence for McCain's war service (as should be afforded any veteran.)
Last but not least, the paper reports on the Obama campaign bracing for race-based attacks
during the campaign.
Meanwhile, the Los Angeles Time
s has a piece about the Obama campaign's careful targeting of black voters
-- emphasizing the tightrope Obama has to walk between courting a needed base, and not turning off certain white voters.
And across the pond, the Guardian
reports that as the recent Mideast oil summit fails to halt rising oil prices
, a leading climate scientist will go before Congress today and call for top oil executives to be put on trial
. And last but not least, if you think politics is toxic in the States, try Zimbabwe
Labels: 2008 election, Barack Obama, campaigns, John McCain, news and current affairs, news and politics, oil prices