Every election year at this time, radio and television airwaves, newspaper columns and political websites are suffused with poll results. Some track voter preferences daily, like www.realclearpolitics.com, which carries a daily compendium of polls on presidential and other significant contests at the national and state levels.
Do Americans want to make Barack Obama a one-term president so that they can replace him with a one-term governor? My biggest beef with Mitt Romney is that he won his way into the statehouse in Boston in 2002 only to use it as a perch to run for the White House in 2008. He didn't run for re-election.
As we approach a major national election, we hear warnings about many kinds of vote fraud and possible recounts that might delay confirmation of the victors. We also hear from deniers who insist that vote fraud is a figment of the imagination of Republicans. It isn't; vote fraud is real.
Over the next few days, news media and Republicans will share video snippets of Thursday night's vice presidential debate. Voters will get an extra helping of Vice President Joe Biden chuckling, interrupting, laughing, mugging, smirking and otherwise behaving completely inappropriately. What Team Obama described as "just Joe being Joe" steadily devolved into Joe just being creepy.
In diplomacy, always leave your adversary an honorable avenue of retreat.
There was something ironic about the latest headlines detailing President Barack Obama's record fundraising success. His gigantic haul in September - some $181 million - was a big step up from the record pace set by both campaigns in August, when the president and his "affiliates" took in $114 million while Gov. Mitt Romney and his affiliate team took in $111 million.
San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee needed nine of 11 supervisors to uphold his bid to fire Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi. He lost. Four supes - John Avalos, David Campos, Jane Kim and Christina Olague - voted Tuesday night to retain Mirkarimi.
"I just thought it's too difficult. And you're not going to like this, but my gut feeling is that all the media is against George, Republicans, any Republican." - Former first lady Barbara Bush, who said she was surprised when her son won the presidency in 2000.
It's out! This year's list of American success stories has just been published, and, according to its compiler, it "instills confidence that the American dream is still very much alive."
Mitt Romney politely cleaned Barack Obama's clock. A lethargic and at times tired looking President Obama was out-hustled, out-facted, out-energized and out-informed by former Gov. Mitt Romney.
The news release headline reads, "Supervisor Wiener to introduce legislation restricting public nudity to appropriate venues." That's San Francisco City Hall-speak for: The city is getting ready to ban public nudity, but not from the Folsom Street Fair or other public venues where nudity has been known to make cameo appearances.
Rep. Emanuel Cleaver, D-Mo., the chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus, said last year, "If (former President) Bill Clinton had been in the White House and had failed to address this problem, we probably would be marching on the White House."
One of the most important elections being held on Nov. 6 doesn't even have a Democrat, Republican, Green, Libertarian, or other partisan on the ballot!
Walter Mondale won his first debate against Ronald Reagan in 1980.
San Francisco City Hall's vast machinery went into overdrive after police questioned Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi about a Dec. 31 argument during which he bruised wife Eliana Lopez's right arm. A neighbor videotaped the bruise and later contacted the police. District Attorney George Gascon filed three misdemeanor charges against Mirkarimi for domestic violence battery of his wife, child endangerment (because the couple's son was present) and dissuading a witness (presumably Lopez). San Francisco truly is the city that knows how - to overreact.
There's a photo-word montage on the Internet in which a little boy, presumably from Africa, looks skeptically at a woman who is apparently from somewhere else. The boy asks, "You mean to tell me you have so much clean water, that you (poop) in it?"
Where are the peaceniks? Why aren't they marching on Capitol Hill to protest President Barack Obama's use of military force in Syria and Iraq? The San Francisco Chronicle's Kevin Fagan interviewed peace activists who told him that their ranks are numb, in part because America has been at war for more than a decade. Some even wonder whether the Islamic State is so barbaric as to merit airstrikes.
"I see the media is at it again," an acquaintance said referring to the deluge of coverage after the Ray Rice assault on his wife. True, a ton of coverage on what became a national, if not international story.
For those of you who read my last column and thought I had crossed over to the dark side, this one should tilt the world back on its proper axis.
"You'll never meet anyone who says, 'I want to be a millionaire. I think I'll start a winery,'" owner Bill Smyth tells me from his small office over the tasting room of Westover Vineyards, nestled in Palomares Canyon. Smyth has worked in a number of fields. He made some money. He bought the vineyard property when he was young. His ex-wife bought him a kit to make wine, and his labor of love turned into a small business.
The video of a Syrian captor beheading American freelance journalist James Foley "has done more damage than any ransom ever could," former Iranian hostage Sarah Shourd warned on CNN recently. Foley's parents have been vocal about their frustration in knowing that their son remained a hostage as France and other European countries paid a reported average of $3 million-plus to free their citizens. The family wants to establish an organization to provide information to other families, presumably to get around a no-ransom policy.
When NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell handed down a mere a two-game suspension for domestic violence, he took his cue from some of the very same women's groups now calling for his head.
Supervisor David Chiu wants San Francisco to become the first American city to oppose any ban on sex-selective abortions. It apparently has not occurred to him why no other city has chosen to do so.
In its wisdom (such as it is), the California Legislature passed a measure that would change the standard of sexual consent on the state's college campuses. Gov. Jerry Brown should veto this bill. If the University of California and other institutions that receive state-funded student aid want to demonstrate they have "no tolerance for any form of sexual violence" when students report rape as state Sen. Kevin de Leon has argued, then they should call the cops, not academic panels.
The bums they were. The L.A. bums they are.
It seems like yesterday. And yet, so much was different.
The strategy that President Obama laid out Wednesday night to "degrade and ultimately destroy the terrorist group known as ISIL," is incoherent, inconsistent and, ultimately, non-credible.
For the first time since 1997, the U.S. economy just added at least 200,000 jobs per month for six months running. GDP grew at a 4 percent annual clip between April and June. The percentage of Americans who describe the economy as "good" has climbed to the highest level of President Barack Obama's presidency.
By releasing the grisly videos of the beheadings of American journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff, ISIS has altered the political landscape here and across the Middle East.
Why has there been no media interest in the police shooting of an apparently unarmed suspect in Salt Lake City?