November 01, 2004

The Boldest Prediction

Mark Steyn is a braver man than I. In three weeks I'm going to Libya, but he went to Fallujah after the fall of Saddam. And he went by himself decked out in a suit in a rental car.

Today he put his job, nay his career, on the line and said if Bush goes, he goes.

Posted by Michael J. Totten at November 1, 2004 12:11 AM

Woohoo! I wish more Wingnuts were just like Mark Steyn!!! Off the planet with the B-Arkers!

Posted by: jerry at November 1, 2004 12:24 AM

That's two things to look forward to!

Posted by: Mork at November 1, 2004 12:34 AM

More close to the truth than the spew in America from the MSM.

Posted by: Barney at November 1, 2004 05:06 AM

This [insert long-winded invective] won't be missed and "period of sober reflection" might just be the ticket for him to realize the error of his ways...

Posted by: novakant at November 1, 2004 06:14 AM

I don't know why you'll be in libya, but i hope you have a safe trip nonetheless.


(who has a totten quote as her sig file)

Posted by: Teri at November 1, 2004 06:16 AM

One more reason to vote for Kerry.

Posted by: Randy Paul at November 1, 2004 06:29 AM

Now maybe we canconvince Striesand & Baldwin to do the same when Kerry looses.

Posted by: Cybrludite at November 1, 2004 06:40 AM

I hope that Steyn is a man of his word and not a flip-flopper.

Posted by: David Sucher at November 1, 2004 06:44 AM

Mark Steyn is not likely going anywhere. Varifrank believes that President Bush will win 381 electoral votes. I am inclined to agree with this optimistic prediction:

“If New Jersey and Pennsylvania break for Bush as I've predicted, It's all over but the cryin' by 5:00 Pacific as they are in the first polls to close. I think Kentucky is the first state, but it's a Bush state, so no surprises there. My guess ( and my hope )is no later than 8:00 Pacific the cement should have set around the feet of John Kerry. I am only up in the air if Kerry will actually concede the same night or continue the campaign into the courts.”

I predict that Bush will win by at least six points.

Posted by: David Thomson at November 1, 2004 06:57 AM

David T:

"...Varifrank believes that President Bush will win 381 electoral votes. I am inclined to agree with this optimistic prediction"

I don't know, what about this?

Then again, the Red Sox did take the flag this year, perhaps this is the age where many such sports trends will fall. As a lifelong Cubbies fan, I certainly hope so.

For the time being though, I'll amuse myself my teasing my Republican friends over it. :)

Posted by: joekm at November 1, 2004 07:17 AM

Ray Fair is voting for John Kerry. Still, this is what he says about the election:

Presidential Vote Equation--October 29, 2004

The predictions of GROWTH, INFLATION, and GOODNEWS for the previous forecast from the US model (July 31, 2004) were 2.7 percent, 2.1 percent, and 2, respectively. With the release of the NIPA data on October 29, 2004, all the actual economic data are available for the vote prediction. The actual values (as of October 29, 2004) of GROWTH, INFLATION, and GOODNEWS are 2.9 percent, 2.0 percent, and 2, respectively.

Given that the actual economic values are close to the values used for the previous vote prediction, the current vote prediction is little changed. The new economic values give a prediction of 57.70 percent of the two-party vote for President Bush rather than 57.48 percent before.

Posted by: David Thomson at November 1, 2004 07:23 AM

I'm dissapointed. I thought it best that we leave it to silly Liberals all those threats about "leaving" if their guy doesn't win.

Posted by: David at November 1, 2004 07:29 AM

Sorry I can't be bothered to read past Mr. Styen's first page, which he finishes with the accusation of Democrats getting set to committ voter fraud. What a joke coming from a man supporting a party that is behind letters like this:

Posted by: Markus Rose at November 1, 2004 08:10 AM

Me too.

If Kerry wins, I'll resign my commission on the 3rd. I will never ever look in the mirror and say "John Kerry is my boss."

Ok, that felt good. The truth is I've already submitted my resignation. For the first time as an adult, I'll be a civilian next May. It just felt so damn good to say that I'd resign my commission before I work for Kerry.

I hope against hope that if he wins, we don't hear a huge sucking sound coming out of the civilian sector- a mass exodus of troops from our ranks. But I can hardly imagine any other scenario given the way my fellow soldiers over here (and I'm very certain- everywhere) feel about him...

Kerry Comment Rankles Troops (ya think?)

For the those who actually buy Kerry's "I'll blame the President for anything bad that happens, and praise the troops for anything good that happens" nonsense, I'd ask you to consider this civilian-friendly "Jay Leno analogy" that I came up with at my site yesterday- trying to explain it to some of my new non-military friends:

1) I, deciding that I want to be the new President of NBC, start lobbying for the job by telling Jay Leno that he does a GREAT JOB on his show. He's motivated, he tries really hard, works long hours on his jokes, plans his show well, etc. "You're a great asset to NBC, Jay!"

2) Next, I go on record to the national media and say that the current President of NBC must go. Why? Because the Jay Leno Show is AWFUL. It's the worst show I've ever seen. NOT BECAUSE OF JAY, mind you- he works his butt off and does the best he can. But the President of NBC (the leadership) made some horrible executive decisions. Those bad decisions caused Jay's Show to be totally unfunny- the jokes NEVER work and the interviews are just plain boring. I'll even bring up the following "catastrophic blunder"- Jay failed to find one of his guests for the show. His guest was supposed to be there, but in between segments, the guest turned up missing. Even though nobody remembers a guest ever "disappearing" during the show, I'll reference a soon-to-be-debunked story from the NY Times as the source of my complaint. "Just one of series of catastrophic blunders that makes that show a painful disaster to watch," I'd say.

Now- how's Jay Leno gonna feel when that story breaks the next day? He'll come at me FUMING!! I'll say "Easy Jay! I said YOU were great! It's your SHOW that stinks! And that's not YOUR fault- it's the leadership's fault."

Jay Leno's gonna look at me and say "2Slick! I'M the one out there DOING THE %$#ING SHOW!!!"

WE are Jay Leno!!! Are ya feelin' me now????

And to be quite honest, I'd appreciate an apology from the once-again shamefully discreditted Senator.

I'm no prima donna- I'll take criticism. I'll be the first to admit we soldeirs made mistakes in Iraq. Find me a war in which no mistakes were made from either side. But if you're gonna throw accusations at me, I'd expect you to have some carefully-researched, definitive FACTS! Not some politically concocted joke of a story from a joke of a news organization.

Smearing our soldiers for political gain. Hmmm. Where have I seen THAT one before?

Whoa, started ranting again. Sorry 'bout that!

Posted by: $lick at November 1, 2004 08:21 AM

As a centrist-Democrat, voting for Kerry with many reservations, I hope Steyn goes back on his word if Kerry is elected.

I enjoy his writing trememndously, even if I don't agree with him on everything. He's just too funny.

Please don't go, Mark.

Posted by: SoCalJustice at November 1, 2004 08:23 AM


I'm assuming your vote for John Kerry is an endorsement for the political party that supports this:

Billionaire currency trader George Soros, in his quest to unseat President Bush, has given millions of dollars to a coalition of anti-Bush organizations whose nationwide voter-registration drive has been targeted by state and federal authorities for possible widespread fraud.

and this:

Lake election and law enforcement officials said their investigation is centered on absentee registration attempts by the nonpartisan NAACP's National Voter Fund and an anti-Bush nonprofit group called Americans Coming Together, or ACT Ohio.

and this:

In recent days, ACORN has been at the epicenter of reports on thousands of potentially fraudulent voter registrations across the nation -- including many by ex-felons -- submitted by ACORN employees in the presidential swing states of Ohio, Colorado, Missouri Pennsylvania, New Mexico and Minnesota.

Posted by: David at November 1, 2004 08:35 AM

My bold prediction is that someone reads David's comment above and shrieks, "Moonies!", which of course invalidates any information found under the first link.

Posted by: JPS at November 1, 2004 08:51 AM


it attempts to invalidate it.

Posted by: David at November 1, 2004 09:07 AM

I like reading Steyn, but I don't believe that anymore than I believe the people who say they're going to move out of the US if the President is reelected.

I suppose it makes for good copy.

Posted by: Eric Blair at November 1, 2004 09:08 AM

David, Even If Bush should win a 50 state sweep, Kerry WILL NOT concede this election..He already has thousands (literally thousands) of attorney's waiting to file lawsuits.. I hope this country smakcs him hard enough that he gets put in his place.

Posted by: Cathy at November 1, 2004 09:08 AM

I suppose if Kerry were to win we would all have to leave because we won't be able to afford to live here. What will the poor people do when the money they get from me puts them in a higher tax bracket?

Posted by: Barney at November 1, 2004 09:11 AM

Ok, that felt good. The truth is I've already submitted my resignation. For the first time as an adult, I'll be a civilian next May. It just felt so damn good to say that I'd resign my commission before I work for Kerry.

Assuming if the president is reëlected, he doesn't implement another stop-loss order.

BTW, IIRC you once wrote that you were a Blackhawk pilot. I thought they were all warrant officers.

Posted by: Randy Paul at November 1, 2004 09:14 AM


it seems hardly fair because when Dems lose they can simply move to France.

Where do Republicans go when they lose?

Posted by: David at November 1, 2004 09:14 AM

Just a little reminder: You folks did NOT have a majority last time.

Posted by: David Sucher at November 1, 2004 09:16 AM

I stand corrected.

Posted by: Randy Paul at November 1, 2004 09:18 AM

David S.,

right. RE-defeat Bushitler! He's not YOUR president!

Posted by: David at November 1, 2004 09:27 AM

David: Where do Republicans go when they lose?.


Posted by: Brian O'Connell at November 1, 2004 09:28 AM

David -- the problem with the Washington Times is not that its owned by the Moonies, its that there is no dividing line between its editorial pages and its "news" pages. In contrast to the Wall Street Journal and some other papers with conservative editorial pages, it is not a serious newspaper -- rather, it's simply a vehicle for dispensing and adumbrating RNC talking points.

Case in point is the article you linked to, David. Contains NO DETAILS of the allegations in the heading. Rather it goes on for paragraph after paragaph with generic points about the history, philosophy, goals of Mr. Soros' group, and of America Coming Together -- points that are completely tangential to the alleged charges. Out of twenty seven friggin' paragraphs, the article contains only ONE paragraph about the allegations, purportedly the central point of the article:

"Hundreds of questionable voter-registration applications, such as duplicates, and accusations of workers shredding registrations in favor of one party are under review by local, state and federal law-enforcement and election authorities in Colorado, New Mexico, Nevada, Missouri, Michigan, Minnesota, West Virginia, Oregon, Ohio, Arizona, Pennsylvania and Florida."

NO supporting DETAILS, no specifics, no quotes, no rebuttal, no substance, nothing beyond this paragraph...and I must add "no jounalism."


Posted by: Markus Rose at November 1, 2004 09:35 AM


I cited the article to demonstrate that law enforcement officials are onto Soros and his Liberal fraud machine, not to show what the Washington Times thinks of him. That's why you can take the paragraph I quoted to the bank, and disregard the rest of the article if you so choose.

Regarding the blurring of editorial/news in the Wash. Times, that's something conservatives see almost universally in what you probably consider to be respectable news sources.

Posted by: David at November 1, 2004 09:43 AM

I don't think Steyn is quite as brave as Michael believes - he has left himself some wiggle room. "Would be appropriate", "usually". And if push comes to shove he can always say the editor wrote the headline. Guess we'll find out on Wednesday.

But on a more serious note - if Steyn really believes in the war against islamofascism then his point of view will be far more important to the war when Kerry is President than it is now. How much courage does it take to abdicate rather than keep fighting?

Posted by: vanya at November 1, 2004 09:54 AM

David -- I miswrote my first paragraph. What's pathetic about the WAshingon Times is NOT that they blur the line between editorials and "news" -- although as I said the Wall Street Journal maintains a strict separation, it IS possible to be both opinionated and a good reporter. The National Review and Weekly Standard have some good opinion pieces backed up by real reporting, real facts. What's pathetic about the Washington Times is that its editorializing news pages are based on such shitty REPORTING, and the case in point was the article you referenced.

Finally, ripping up voter registration forms with the wrong affiliation is one thing, submitting bogus registration forms is another. The former, of which both Democrats and Republicans have been accused,, is serious, the latter, likely done by someone being paid on a per-signature basis to register new voters, is not -- particularly because Donald Duck isn't going to be showing up on Tuesday.

The overriding point is that one group of people -- Republicans -- is going to be focused on preventing actual people who show up at the polls tomorrow from casting a ballot, and the other group -- Democrats -- is going to be fighting to LET them cast their ballot.

Posted by: Markus Rose at November 1, 2004 10:02 AM

Randy Paul said: BTW, IIRC you once wrote that you were a Blackhawk pilot. I thought they were all warrant officers.

Randy, I'll give you this- by virtue of knowing what a warrant officer is, you know TONS more than your normal everyday civilian.

We Army Aviators are different than those who fly in the Navy, Air Force, Marines, CG...

We have (as you deftly pointed out) warrant officers who fly our aircraft (not JUST Black Hawks- every aircraft in our iventory). However, our Aviation-branched commissioned officers (like me!) fly as well.

So what the hell is the difference?

Commissioned officers hold leadership positions, while warrant officers (with VERY few by-unit exceptions) do not. Warrant officers are standard line pilots, instructor pilots, maintanence test pilots, etc.

Obviously, warrant officers get to do a good bit more flying than us commissioned guys. But when I was a platoon leader (and then again as a company commander), I'd be the Air Mission Commander (AMC) when we'd fly our multi-ship Air Assault missions, ash and trash missions, etc. It's awesome stuff. We make command decisions from the cockpit and all that. And we get paid more, too! The downside? We spend only a fraction of our careers in command assignments- most of the time, we're staff officers (like me right now) and we fly a desk. However, I was a staff officer in Iraq last year, but I still got to do a good bit of flying (just as a fill-in line pilot, but it was fun).

Didn't mean to hammer you with your military lesson for the day, but you asked for it!!

I think people in general understood the military much better back in the WWII days.

I'm getting out mostly because my fiance isn't cut out to be an Army wife- and I've been with her for 16 years- much longer than I've been in the Army. She wins!

My resignation's already been accepted and approved by Rummy, so I'm immune to any impending stop loss (but I'd be sweating it out if I were still in the 101st right now!). Seriously, if Bush wins and he keeps me in, I'll continue to serve proudly as long as he (and you great folks) need me...

I am impressed that you knew what a warrant officer is. Most civilians that I know don't. Even my fiance...

Posted by: $lick at November 1, 2004 10:03 AM


this is a pretty good example:

Here’s the original MSNBC transcript of John Kerry’s interview with Tom Brokaw, dated October 28: MSNBC - Sen. Kerry: Nation ‘is polarized’.

Brokaw: Someone has analyzed the President’s military aptitude tests and yours, and concluded that he has a higher IQ than you do.

Kerry: That’s great. More power. I don’t know how they’ve done it, because my record is not public. So I don’t know where you’re getting that from.

And here’s the more recent version of the same transcript, dated October 31: MSNBC - Kerry: ‘America can do better’. Please notice what has been removed, from a critical passage that has been much noted in the blogosphere:

Brokaw: “Someone has analyzed the president’s military aptitude tests and yours, and concluded that he has a higher IQ than you do.”

Kerry: “That’s great. More power. I don’t know how they’ve done it.”

See Markus, with the mainstream media carrying Kerry's water for him the way it has this entire campaign, it's no wonder Fox is so popular.

Posted by: David at November 1, 2004 10:05 AM

David -- if Kerry said that on national TV, what friggin' difference does it make what's on the transcript??!!

In fact, Tom Brokow is being very favorable to Bush in that exchange. Bringing up a totally irrelevant point that makes Bush look good. And far it from helping Kerry, the removal of the information that his records are sealed WEAKENS KERRY's argument, rather than strengthening it. His point was that whomever made this utterly ridiculous and utterly irrelevant claim could not have had all the information needed to make that claim, and the part removed from the transcript explains that would be the case.

Posted by: Markus Rose at November 1, 2004 10:18 AM


it probably makes very little difference, true; certainly this late in the game. But the reason I cite this is not because whether it will have any impact, but to demonstrate to you that your trusted news sources are anything but trustworthy.

Given that conservatives have been trying to get Kerry to release his records, and given that the MSM has dutifully and obediently ignored the issue, it's no surprise therefore that they would deepsix any inadvertent reference to it.

That's why the way you see the Washington Times and Fox is how we see the MSM in general. They're all Democrats.

Posted by: David at November 1, 2004 10:28 AM


If you note I corrected myself earlier at 9:18 a.m.

My dad was a civilian employee of the military (the US Army Missile Command). I lived in Germany twice and graduated from a DOD high school there. Almost all my friends growing up were the sons and daughters of military personnel.

I agree that the life is hard. My best friend in high school's father was Commander of the 32nd AADCOM in Germany and a major general. He moved every two years.

You might also mention that Warrant Officers are addressed as "Mister" and that commissioned officers receive their commission from the president.

I have respect for all those who have served.

Posted by: Randy Paul at November 1, 2004 11:02 AM


There is a big difference between Fox/Washington Times and NYT/CBS/Washington Post etc. My problem with the former is not that they are conservative in outlook, it is that they are aggressively Republican. If the GOP spokesmen all decided tomorrow that gay marriage was good and Osama was our new best friend, Fox would turn on a dime. The mainstream media is clearly liberal, especially on social issues, but they are not pro-Democrat. Liberal journalists are typically very harsh on succesful Democratic politicians (but yes, they love unsuccesful ones), even while buying into Democratic policies 100%. Look at the difference between the way the MSM treated Gore & Bush in 2000. The Boston Globe has been historically one of Kerry's biggest critics, even though it is certainly a very liberal paper.

Posted by: vanya at November 1, 2004 11:04 AM

Right on, Randy.

Thanks for your support...

If you know this one, I'll give you the grand prize:

What do you call a female warrant? What if she's married?

I struggle with that one myself...

I'll not hijack this thread any longer.

For what it's worth, I don't think Steyn is serious about quitting. But I agree with some of his "sad reckoning" with respect to modern journalism...

Posted by: $lick at November 1, 2004 11:08 AM

Flyboy $lick said:
"I think people in general understood the military much better back in the WWII days."

I'd have to point out that's because some 16 million citizens served in the military in WWII. compare that to 8 million during the Vietnam era, to less than 3 million today.

With the demise of conscription, only those who want to join up.

To put that in persective, the total population of the US was 139 million in 1945. 16 million served in uniform through the war which is around 11%. In 1972, the US population was about 209 million, with 8 million having served during the Vietnam era. That's about 4%. Today, the US population is around 275 million, with, call it a generous 3 million in the armed forces. (that's probably too big). That's like 1.09%.

So, No wonder people have no idea WTF goes on in the military, or no idea of its terms and usages and so forth.

Posted by: Eric Blair at November 1, 2004 11:13 AM

The only Warrants I ever came into contact with in the Infantry were hoary old WO-4 mechanics. We called them "Chief". I guess the the proper usage is supposed to be "Mister"?

How about "Warrant Officer Smith"

Posted by: Eric Blair at November 1, 2004 11:16 AM

Since the topic has shifted a little, I hope this question is appropriate. Can somebody tell me how warrant officers fit in when it come to rank? Are they outranked by all commissioned officers, or do they sort of hold an equivalent rank (like WO1 = 2nd Lt)? Are they addressed as 'Sir' by lower-ranking personnel? I've been curious about this since I discovered that warrant officers exist (I mean, who knew; it's not like you have a lot of movies or novels about warrant officers. Well, I guess there was The General's Daughter)

Posted by: Dave Ruddell at November 1, 2004 11:45 AM


Don't know what you call a female warrant officer. In fact, despite having worked summers in high school for the US Army, I never met a female w/o.

BTW, lest I be misunderstood, my support for those who served also extends to Senator kerry.

Posted by: Randy Paul at November 1, 2004 11:47 AM

If the GOP spokesmen all decided tomorrow that gay marriage was good and Osama was our new best friend, Fox would turn on a dime.


the problem with that assessment is that it's based on your perception only, not the facts. You have no evidence whatsoever with which to back that up.

But is there anything funnier to watch than the Left suddenly discovering the virtues of journalistic objectivity? Liberals have ruled the news media roost for decades, regularly demeaning conservative ideas and leaders in their ongoing quest for progress and enlightenment.

But now that Fox News Channel is on the scene, dominating the cable news scene and showing America that TV news can be something different than the suffocating consensus of the liberal establishment, the left is in a panic. Objectivity is needed! Democracy itself is in danger!

Posted by: David at November 1, 2004 11:53 AM

I gotta show this thread to my warrant buddies- they are gonna FREAK!

Great point about WWII Eric- I'd be quick to note that people seemed a lot less divided about military actions back then as well. I don't think that's a coincidence.

All great questions...

-Most "walking warrants" (like your old CW4 buddy) are addressed as "chief." Most won't complain if you call them "mister." Calling him "chief warrant officer jones" would be correct as well, but nobody ever says that.

A WO1 would never be addresses as "chief warrant so and so" it would just be "warrant officer jones."

Flying warrants, in general, prefer not to be called "chief" "mister" is most common.

-Female warrants are "miss" whether their married or not...

The progression of rank goes like this:

Sergeant Major (highest ranking enlisted guy)

is outranked by a WO1

who is outranked by

CW2 (Chief Warrant Officer 2), and then obviously it continues with CW3, CW4, and the recently created (I think it started in '96?)

CW5 (not many of these old ruffians, but there are some)

and then 2LT, 1LT, CPT, etc.

So yes, as a 22-year-old 2LT in Korea I outranked my Brigade Instructor Pilot (a 50-something CW5) who flew cobras for 2 years in Vietnam. He called me "sir," and showed all the proper respect, but there was obviously no doubt who commanded that cockpit when we flew together. He was one hell of a pilot...

Finally to Randy- I definitely understand why you would respect anyone who served (even the demonic traitor). I'm sure you can understand why I most certainly do not.

Posted by: $lick at November 1, 2004 12:14 PM

David writes: "Objectivity is needed!"

Suddenly I dont understand your perspective at all. I had always assumed that you felt that while the NYT professed to aspire to objectivity, they fail at that, so we need Fox and the Mooonies to balance things out. I cant imagine that anyone, even you, would claim that those two are objective.

So what is it that you want? Rightwing media to balance out the liberals? Or objectivity from all? If the latter, then why not bash Fox and the Moonies as much as the libs, for they are obviously at least as biased in their direction as the lib media in their direction.

Posted by: Tano at November 1, 2004 12:15 PM

David writes: "Objectivity is needed!"


no, that's what Libs say; yet they are the biggest propagandists of them all.

Fox is a bitter dose of their own medicine.

Posted by: David at November 1, 2004 12:45 PM

Those old warrants are something else. Our Chief could just listen to a track and tell us what was wrong with it. Come to think of it, I did meet a couple of Aviation CW4's or 5's when I was stuck in a Division HQ for a while. They used to drive vehicles like they were flying.

Posted by: Eric Blair at November 1, 2004 12:58 PM

Ok Barney:

"Where do Republicans go when they lose?"

Man, here I am tired and a little punchy from using the weekend to prepare my house for sale and you gotta throw me a straight-line like that... :)

I can think of a few discussions where there would be many post telling Republicans where to go. :)

...I, however, will refrain, it simply wouldn't be sporting....

(all this tounge-in-cheek of course)

Posted by: joekm at November 1, 2004 01:05 PM

"Ok Barney:

"Where do Republicans go when they lose?"

Probably to the poor house.

Posted by: barney at November 1, 2004 03:33 PM


It's Mon. before the election, time to get ready.
If you care who wins you will obviously keep up with the court cases so you will need a few things to get you through this period and here they are:

First night a 12 pack of your favorite brew and a good book like "How to run elections in Third World countries: Afghanistan to American secrets revealed"

2nd night another 12 pack finish reading above mentioned book start a new book "Stealing an Election by Dan Rather"

3rd night a case of beer flip flop between the MSM where Kerry won or Fox where Bush wins"

Continue this sequence for about 3 months.

After that, whoever wins declare him illegitimate for the next four years.


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