sharron angle: Page 1
The Fix looked at Angle, Buck, O'Donnell and two other faces of the tea party: New York governor candidate Carl Paladino and Kentucky Senate candidate Rand Paul.
The five of them, it turns out, ran behind the vast majority of other Republican candidates -- and sometimes by wide margins.
In almost every case, they ran behind more mainstream Republican candidates for governor, lieutenant governor, secretary of state and other statewide offices. And in no case did the tea party candidate run significantly ahead of another statewide Republican candidate...
...Among House candidates, Iraq veteran Jesse Kelly, who lost to Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.), state Sen. Brad Zaun, who lost to Rep. Leonard Boswell (D-Iowa), and even state Rep. Raul Labrador, who beat Rep. Walt Minnick (D-Idaho), all fared less well in their districts than other Republican candidates running for office in the state.
Chris Cillizza includes the disclaimer that those races were higher-profile than the down-ballot ones, but that would seem to make his case even stronger: few people probably have a burning interest in who's going to be the treasurer of Nevada and the results above would seem to indicate that even many Republicans couldn't stand those listed above.
[See the update: Harry Reid is lying about Angle's comments]
The Democratic Party's "Accountability Project" uploaded  the audio below, apparently trying to make people think that Sharron Angle is calling Social Security and similar programs "wicked". In fact, she's not calling those programs "wicked". What she considers wicked are those who turn their backs on the least among them, relying on government programs to take care of people they should be taking care of. On the audio she accepts social safety net programs as a reality, she just thinks that people should take care of those in their own communities more than they do.
Here's the relevant part of the audio:
We as a nation have been walking away from our constitutional freedom and relying on government instead to take care of the widow and the orphan. Isn't that what He says? True religion and [inaudible] for God is that you care for the widow and the orphan. Isn't that the poor and needy among us? And, yet, we're saying, let the government have all these programs now: AFDC, Medicare, Social Security, and that's fine. But, isn't it we that should be thinking about this? Isn't it us that should be caring in our community for those that the Lord has called us [inaudible, "to lead"?], saying you honor Him, you love Him, if you care for these the least among you.
Also keep in mind, Angle has been trying to convince Nevadans that she actually wants to preserve Social Security, despite having already committed herself to trying to "phase out" the bedrock American safety-net program. What we have, then, is a borderline-deranged Senate hopeful telling reporters she supports Social Security, while quietly telling supporters she considers Social Security -- along with Medicare, abortion, divorce, and gay marriage -- to be "wicked."
She does in fact consider abortion to be "wicked" but, once again, the same isn't true of social welfare programs themselves. What she considers "wicked" is people turning their backs on the least among them.
As can be seen, I'm not in any way a fan of Sharron Angle or the Tea Parties. It's beyond pathetic that her opponents can't make a good case against someone out on the fringe but have to try to mislead instead.
UPDATE: Harry Reid has released a deceptive new ad entitled 'Sharron Angle Called Social Security and Medicare "Wicked"' and with the description "In Sharron Angle's Nevada, Social Security and Medicare would be eliminated because they are "wicked" and defy the laws of God as she sees them. While she won't talk to media or voteres, we've compiled her greatest hits." Watch it here: peekurl.com/vypitld
The ad takes her comments out of context for the reasons discussed above: Harry Reid is lying.
 washingtonmonthly.com/archives/individual/2010_10/026349.php (I strongly recommend against linking to the Washington Monthly, see that link for the details).
Here's the audio, also available at peekURL.com/vx5q4tm
The ad appears to be vaguely referencing the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act which Reid attached to the defense reauthorization bill last month as an amendment. The DREAM Act wouldn’t give undocumented students special tuition rates, but it would eliminate a federal provision that penalizes states that provide in-state tuition without regard to immigration status. Angle’s ad doesn’t mention that it would also allow certain undocumented immigrant youth who were brought to the U.S. by their parents at a young age to eventually obtain legal permanent status by enlisting in the military or attending a university. A June 2010 national poll of 1,008 adults revealed that 70 percent of voters support the DREAM Act, across party lines.
1. As I stated at the Angle ad link, she should have run it by NumbersUSA or some other group first, because, unfortunately, Nill is correct in a technical sense: the DREAM Act itself wouldn't give "special tuition rates".
2. However, where Nill is misleading is with that same Orwellian sentence containing "special tuition rates". Federal law currently says that states can't give illegal aliens a rate that they don't give to citizens . The DREAM Act would do away with that, letting states give illegal aliens a better rate than citizens. The bill itself wouldn't give illegal aliens a better rate, it would just allow states to do that with impunity. What she says above is like saying, "this bill wouldn't raise the speed limit, it would just eliminate the speed limit and let people go as fast as they want". Needless to say, giving illegal aliens a better rate than citizens is openly anti-American and shows how little loyalty those Americans who support the DREAM Act have to their fellow citizens.
3. Nill doesn't tell her readers that the "federal provision that penalizes states" has not ever as far as I know been enforced; see this, which references this. The reason for that is federal corruption: those running the Department of Homeland Security are too corrupt to enforce the laws they're required to enforce.
4. The "poll" she mentions (from First Focus) was more of an advocacy poll designed to obtain a skewed result, and the poll question misleads about the DREAM Act. No respectable polling organization would ever ask such a blatantly biased question; most would try to hide it better. Take a look at the incredibly biased question that was asked at . That question includes, "To earn legal status, students must have come to the U.S. when they were very young." In fact, the DREAM Act that Harry Reid was pushing would be open to those who claimed they came here at 15 years or younger. Does anyone think 15 years of age is "very young"?
 Title 8, Chapter 14, Sec. 1623, link:
Notwithstanding any other provision of law, an alien who is not lawfully present in the United States shall not be eligible on the basis of residence within a State (or a political subdivision) for any postsecondary education benefit unless a citizen or national of the United States is eligible for such a benefit (in no less an amount, duration, and scope) without regard to whether the citizen or national is such a resident.
Harry Reid recently announced he'd offer the anti-American DREAM Act amnesty as an amendment to the Defense bill. Now, four days later, the most his opponent Sharron Angle has done in opposition is to appear on Fox News and oppose that anti-American amnesty from procedural grounds.
Not only that, but she seems to be adopting an immigration stance that's weaker than her previous comments. She appears to now be taking a "secure the border first" posture which begs the question of what exactly she'd support after the borders are secured. If she won't oppose a smaller anti-American amnesty now, exactly what would she support if she makes it into the Senate?
Angle was interviewed about various topics yesterday by Bret Baier; a video is at peekURL.com/vxhfdig Comments after the transcript:
ANGLE: He's incentivizing amnesty, this is just one of those ways. But, he's politicized this, he's looking for votes, he's looking for votes in those places where he thinks he can find them. And to attach them to the defense bill is truly an outrageous act of political maneuvering...
BAIER: Some Republicans support [the DREAM Act]. You're obviously not one of those.
ANGLE: Well, obviously, the American people believe that we're a country of the rule of law and anytime that we start to go around that rule of law and make one segment of our society outside the rule of law we're in trouble. The answer to these problems is first of all, secure our borders and then enforce the laws that we have. Then we can deal with the internal problems that we have left. But, first we've got to get those borders secure. We're a sovereign nation. We have a northern border that is more porous than our southern border and of course our coastal borders are also porous so let's get the borders secured, enforce the laws, and then we can talk about these other things but don't incentivize illegal behavior.
Note that she can't answer a straight question. Anyone who truly opposes amnesty in any form would answer directly that they oppose the DREAM Act. Angle just dances around the question . This is the same opposition to Reid's amendment that some GOP senators have offered, such as McCain: purely on political and procedural grounds and not based out of any real opposition to the DREAM Act.
A glimmer of a good argument does shine through in the "one segment of our society" part, but then she dashes all that with a stock GOP establishment response of securing the borders. Yes, obviously, the borders need to be secured. However, harping on secure the border - as discussed at the link - is frequently a dodge some use to mask how weak they are on illegal immigration and amnesty.
She then apparently realized she needed to fill space - instead of directly opposing the anti-American DREAM Act amnesty - and went off on a tear about our Canadian and coastal borders.
The final part is not in any way an unmitigated opposition to amnesty. In fact, she's leaving the door open to her supporting an amnesty after the borders are secure.
If you're an Angle supporter, read her comments or watch the video: nothing she says is something that John McCain or other politicians who are soft on amnesty couldn't have also said.
 That same dance is one I'm familiar with: in a Twitter conversation I had with her months ago she refused to come out against comprehensive immigration reform, and that's despite me suggesting she take the time to answer.
Sam Stein misleads about Sharron Angle (unemployment insurance "really doesn't benefit anyone") - 09/03/10
Sam Stein of the Huffington Post offers "Sharron Angle Claims Unemployment Insurance 'Really Doesn't Benefit Anyone'" (link), a sleazy attack that shows once again that he's just a Democratic proxy and is willing to try to mislead.
In a radio interview on Wednesday, Angle said this:
"People don't want to be unemployed... They want to have real, full-time, permanent jobs with a future. That's what they want, and we need to create that climate in Washington, D.C. that encourages businesses to create those full-time, permanent jobs with a future, and all [Rep.] Shelley Berkeley and [Senate Majority Leader] Harry Reid want to do is put a band-aid on this by extending unemployment, which really doesn't benefit anyone. What happens is of course that your skills stagnate. You become demoralized yourself, you know, feeling that I can't ever get a job, and these are not the solutions to the problem. We have real solutions, but they won't look at the real solutions."
It should be obvious that she's right about full-time jobs, and it's difficult to imagine anyone disagreeing with her full remarks considered in context. We can disagree about the way she'd create jobs, but not about the fact that having a full-time job is preferable to collecting unemployment insurance. If she were wrong, then we should just extend unemployment benefits indefinitely and everyone in the country can go on them. Obviously, that wouldn't work.
Just as obviously, she doesn't mean that unemployment insurance can't help you survive and pay your bills, although that's the impression that Sam Stein is trying to give, writing:
Until this week, it doesn't appear that she's ever argued that UI doesn't "benefit anyone." -- a rather bold proclamation that even the most doctrinaire of Republicans probably wouldn't make. It's pretty easy, after all, to find people who benefit from unemployment insurance. They're called the unemployed.
Once again, she doesn't mean it in that way. Third graders should be able to figure out what she's talking about: unemployment insurance isn't a long-term option but should just be a temporary stop-gap for the reasons she mentions in the quote. Sam Stein is intentionally trying to start a smear.
Sharron Angle goes after Reid on issues outside his control, won't press hard on immigration - 07/23/10
The video at peekURL.com/vc2rep7 is a new campaign ad from Sharron Angle in which she says: "Harry Reid says he does more for Nevada... He's done more for unemployment... He's done more for the foreclosure rate...
Even Dick Armey of FreedomWorks - a main stringpuller on the tea parties movement - now realizes that the label "Tea Party" is toxic and politicians should avoid calling themselves "tea party leaders". Recall that last month the Koch family - without which there might not be a tea party movement - also backed away from the tea parties. From this:
...Armey said (Rand Paul)’s "bigger mistake" came in his victory speech after securing the nomination, when he said "I have a message from the tea party. ... We've come to take our government back" and added: "This tea party movement is a message to Washington that we are unhappy and we want things done differently."
Armey said "I think that hurt him more than (the Civil Rights Act exchange), because the principles of liberty won that position and he won by adhering to them." He quipped that Paul’s reasoning for positioning himself as a tea party leader might have been, "Alright, I don’t have a big enough target on my back. Since the left hates the tea party and they hate me, let’s see if we can get ‘em to double down on me by me claiming to be the leader of the tea party."
"Don’t ask for more of what you really don’t want," Armey said. Pointing out that Paul "ran as a Republican - he won the Republican primary," Armey suggested that Paul and other tea party-backed candidates can remain true to the movement’s limited government principles without becoming targets by declaring themselves tea party leaders.
There certainly is the possibility that Armey was trying to distance the teaparties from Rand Paul due to the latter showing just where libertarian thinking (such as it is) leads. However, he was also asked about Sharron Angle, and, while her positions seem to also have a strong lunatic libertarian component she hasn't gotten as much heat for them as Paul. And, he was also speaking generally, so it seems like the much more likely possibility is that he now realizes that being associated with those in the tea party movement isn't such a good thing.
Note also that Armey had bad things to say about Keith Olbermann and Rachel Maddow and suggested that Republicans stay off MSNBC. All of this ties together: if Armey and the tea parties were competent and advanced mainstream ideas they wouldn't have to worry about going on hostile TV shows, and they wouldn't have to worry about keeping any tea party leadership secret.
More proof Justin Elliott isn't credible (Sharron Angle, public health concerns over fluoride) - 06/09/10
[SEE THE UPDATES TOO]
Sharron Angle  won the Republican primary against Harry Reid yesterday, and as could be expected Democratic Party proxies are already beginning their attack. One of those is Justin Elliot of TalkingPointsMemo, who offers "FLASHBACK: GOPer Angle Spoke Out Against Fluoride In Water Supply" .
It's a low-grade attempt to provoke a conditioned response that most people have: when someone says something against fluoridation, you're supposed to think that person must be nuts. As it turns out, the science of fluoridation isn't anywhere near as settled as some would have you believe, and the original program of fluoridation was sold using a smear campaign without having the benefit of rigorous studies.
For an overview, see this:
The reality is that anyone making any confident statement on fluoride speaks way beyond the evidence. In 1999 the [UK] Department of Health commissioned the centre for reviews and dissemination at York University to do a systematic review of fluoridation and its effects on dental health. Little new work has been done since. In the review, 3,200 research papers, mostly of very poor quality, were unearthed. The ones that met the minimum quality threshold suggested there was vaguely, possibly, around a 15% increase in the number of children without dental caries in areas with fluoridated water, but the studies generally couldn't exclude other explanations for the variance. Of course, the big idea with fluoride in water is that it can reduce social inequalities in dental health since everyone drinks it. But there isn't much evidence on that either... A study from Taiwan found a high incidence of bladder cancer in women from areas where the natural fluoride content in water was high. It might have been a chance finding; but it could be real...
For more, see the following links, presented roughly in order of value and credibility. Please think for yourself and once again don't trust what Justin Elliot tells you:
UPDATE: In case it wasn't clear, I'm not saying that fluoridation is good or bad; I don't know since I'm not a scientist. Like it says below, this post is designed to encourage critical thinking rather than simply believing what one's been taught to think.
There are links about various European cities and countries deciding against fluoridation here.
Also see this study done by researchers at the University of Michigan:
In 1983/1984, a study of bone mass and fractures was begun in 827 women aged 20-80 years in three rural Iowa communities selected for the fluoride and calcium content of their community water supplies. The control community's water had a calcium content of 67 mg/liter and a fluoride content of 1 mg/liter. The higher-calcium community had water with a calcium content of 375 mg/liter and a fluoride content of 1 mg/liter. The higher-fluoride community's water had 15 mg/liter of calcium and 4 mg/liter of fluoride naturally occurring. In 1988/1989, a follow-up study characterized the 684 women still living and available for study. Residence in the higher-fluoride community was associated with a significantly lower radial bone mass in premenopausal and postmenopausal women, an increased rate of radial bone mass loss in premenopausal women, and significantly more fractures among postmenopausal women. There was no difference in the 5-year relative risk of any fracture in the higher-calcium community versus the control community; however, the relative risk was 2.1 (95% confidence interval (CI) 1.0-4.4) in women in the higher-fluoride community compared with women in the control community. There was no difference in the 5-year risk of wrist, spine, or hip fracture in the higher-calcium community versus the control community; however, the 5-year relative risk for women in the higher-fluoride community, compared with women in the control community, was 2.2 (95% CI 1.1-4.7). Estimates of risk were adjusted for age and body size.
And, see "The Fluoride Deception" (Amazon link):
Concerns over fluoridated drinking water have long been derided as the obsession of McCarthyite cranks. But this muckraking j’accuse asserts that fluoride is indeed a dire threat to public health, one foisted upon the nation by a vast conspiracy—not of Communist agents, but of our very own military-industrial complex. Investigative reporter Bryson revisits the decades-long controversy, drawing on mountains of scientific studies, some unearthed from secret archives of government and corporate laboratories, to question the effects of fluoride and the motives of its leading advocates. The efficacy of fluoridated drinking water in preventing tooth decay, he contends, is dubious. Fluoride in its many forms may be one of the most toxic of industrial pollutants, and Bryson cites scientific analyses linking fluoridated drinking water to bone deformities, hyperactivity and a host of other complaints. The post-war campaign to fluoridate drinking water, he claims, was less a public health innovation than a public relations ploy sponsored by industrial users of fluoride—including the government’s nuclear weapons program. Legendary spin doctors like Edward Bernays exploited the tenuous link between dental hygiene and fluoridation to create markets to stimulate fluoride production and to prove the innocuousness of fluoride compounds, thereby heading off lawsuits by factory workers and others poisoned by industrial fluoride pollution. Bryson marshals an impressive amount of research to demonstrate fluoride’s harmfulness, the ties between leading fluoride researchers and the corporations who funded and benefited from their research, and what he says is the duplicity with which fluoridation was sold to the people. The result is a compelling challenge to the reigning dental orthodoxy, which should provoke renewed scientific scrutiny and public debate.
UPDATE 2: From the Sierra Club (sierraclub.org/policy/conservation/water_fluoridation.aspx):
The Sierra Club recommends lowering the maximum contaminant level of fluoride in drinking water from the present 4mg/L to a level shown not to harm aquatic ecosystems or human health. [National Research Council, Fluoride in Drinking Water: a Scientific Review of EPA's Standards, March 2006] ...The Sierra Club understands the historic reason that fluoridation of public water supplies has been promoted and that it may have been historically justifiable (162 million people get fluoride added to their municipal water supply at the recommended level of 0.7-1.2 mg/L). There are now, however, valid concerns regarding the potential adverse impact of fluoridation on the environment, wildlife, and human health.
Alex Pareene - now of Salon - has a post similar to Elliott's, and at least some of the comments point out how he's wrong (letters.salon.com/politics/war_room/2010/06/09/
Has the editorial staff at Salon ever come across a technocrat-endorsed initiative they didn't like? ...She's wary of state medicated water. Ha ha. Probably GMO and rBGH too. Salon's hipster with-it young writers strike again. ...Maybe Salon should have a rule that authors must consult a science writer before posting political hit pieces (no matter how well deserved!) which have a leg in science. Otherwise, Salon is being just as ignorant as the admittedly ignorant targets of Salon's partisan attacks.
See also this:
Among the more significant health conditions evaluated in relation to fluoride intake are cancer, dental fluorosis, and bone fractures. Other conditions are evaluated in the full report.
1/7/11 UPDATE: The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is lowering the recommended level of fluoride in water for the first time since 1962 (link). Partly that's due to fluorosis leading to spotty teeth but also presumably due to things like this:
In March, 2006, the National Academy of Sciences released a report recommending that the EPA lower its maximum standard for fluoride in drinking water to below 4 milligrams. The report warned severe fluorosis could occur at 2 milligrams. Also, a majority of the report's authors said a lifetime of drinking water with fluoride at 4 milligrams or higher could raise the risk of broken bones.
 This is a pro-critical thinking post, not a pro-Angle post. She's the tea parties candidate (or at least the candidate for the Tea Party Express), and she didn't give me a straight answer when I asked whether she supported comprehensive immigration reform on Twitter.