some say General Petraeus has adapted to the ground in Iraq, the real reason "the surge" appears successful.
I introduced Schmidt, in 2006, to the Boyd Cycle. To the consternation of Schmidt's juniors in the Arnold Schwarzenegger re-election campaign, as Schmidt absorbed the very lengthy paper by retired Air Force Colonel John Boyd entitled "Patterns of Conflict" and made its principles a matter of required understanding in the Schwarzenegger campaign.
GWEN IFILL: For more on the candidates' education plans, we turn now to two senior campaign officials. McCain adviser Lisa Graham Keegan is the former chief of Arizona's public school system. And Obama adviser Melody Barnes is the former executive vice president for policy at the Center For American Progress.
Welcome to you both.
First, Melody Barnes, I want you to respond to the ad we just saw which accused Barack Obama of supporting sex education for preschoolers.
MELODY BARNES, Obama Campaign Adviser: It's offensive and preposterous. That we would take such a serious matter of training our young children to defend themselves against sexual predators, which is actually the subject matter of the legislation at hand, and turn that into an ad about Barack Obama trying to teach 5-year-olds about sex before they can read, is absolutely preposterous.
I would think that every parent, every policy-maker in this country would support what Senator Obama actually was supporting, and we shouldn't turn something so serious into a political football.
GWEN IFILL: Lisa Graham Keegan, I want you also to respond to the ad that we saw that the Obama people -- the charges they made against John McCain, that he wanted to, among other things, abolish the Department of Education and if you want to respond to what Melody Barnes said as well.
LISA GRAHAM KEEGAN, McCain Campaign Adviser: Well, first of all, I think it's really important, what Melody says is not the case, and I would really encourage your viewers to take a look at that law. You can seen it online -- I am quite sure by now. That's where I found it.
Read it. It is not about sexual predators. It is about sexual education for 5-year-olds. It is quite comprehensive. I would have opposed it mightily as a legislator and then as a state school chief and as a parent. So, I just encourage the public to take a look at it.
And on the issue of the Department of Education, I had the privilege of being John McCain's surrogate at our platform committee, where one of my jobs was to argue mightily in favor of the important role of the U.S. Department of Education, because our party does have a few people who are dubious.
But Sen. McCain won the day with his position that, at this time in our nation, it is critical that the federal government and the states get together. And we are serious about this issue, because we have fallen so far behind. That's just an outright lie.
What happened: A new 30-second TV ad attacks Barack Obama's record on education, saying that Obama backed legislation to teach "'comprehensive sex education' to kindergartners." The announcer then says, "Learning about sex before learning to read? Barack Obama. Wrong on education. Wrong for your family."
Why that's wrong: This is a deliberately misleading accusation. It came hours after the Obama campaign released a TV ad critical of McCain's votes on public education. As a state senator in Illinois, Obama did vote for but was not a sponsor of legislation dealing with sex ed for grades K-12.
But the legislation allowed local school boards to teach "age-appropriate" sex education, not comprehensive lessons to kindergartners, and it gave schools the ability to warn young children about inappropriate touching and sexual predators.
When running for the Illinois Senate, his opponent hired a staffer to following him around and videotape everything he did. After about a week after asking this staffer to give him some space so he could have a phone conversation without it being recorded, to which the staffer replied only that he could call the campaign headquarters if he had a complaint. Barack then walked into the Senate reporters room and said "Hey guys, I'd like you to meet Justin. He's been paid by the Ryan campaign to follow me and videotape everything I do" The reporters started to interview Justin who only would repeat his name and employer's phone number like a prisoner of war.
The resulting media storm wrecked the Ryan campaign, and Obama won.
I'd just be happy if they could for once use that word that seems so difficult for politicians to use: the lie.
Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama on Wednesday accused Republican John McCain's campaign of using "lies and phony outrage and Swift-boat politics" in claiming he used a sexist comment against vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin.
Rule 9: The threat is more terrifying than the thing itself. When Alinsky leaked word that large numbers of poor people were going to tie up the washrooms of O’Hare Airport, Chicago city authorities quickly agreed to act on a longstanding commitment to a ghetto organization. They imagined the mayhem as thousands of passengers poured off airplanes to discover every washroom occupied. Then they imagined the international embarrassment and the damage to the city’s reputation.
On the Russian-Georgian conflict, her comments appeared to go further than Sen. McCain has in the past. When asked in August whether he would consider using military force to defend Georgia against Russia, he said, simply: "The answer to your...question is no." He has also emphasized that while he strongly supports Georgia, he isn't trying to reignite the Cold War. But his national security adviser, Randy Scheunemann, said Thursday that like Gov. Palin, Sen. McCain believes that U.S. military action would be needed if Georgia was a member of NATO and Russia invaded.
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