Thursday, February 21, 2013
Thursday, August 21, 2008
I am thrilled to announce that my brand new blog and website have launched at: www.MarkCurtisMedia.com. This comes just in time for my coverage of the Democratic Convention in Denver, then the Republican Convention in St. Paul.
The new blog will be much more interactive and will feature many more multimedia options, including more video! It was built and will be operated by Dagaz Solutions of Danville, California. www.dagazsolutions.com.
The new website will also allow visitors to subscribe to my RSS feed, and we will now be able to accept paid advertising!
Don't forget, MarkCurtisMedia.com is a full-service media and public relations company. We produce videos, publicity campaigns, commercial voice-overs, media writing in all styles, and media training!
I am looking forward to my latest political travels, too! Remember, you can find all our information and stories in one easy, central location. Tell your friends, and switch to: www.MarkCurtisMedia.com.
It's only a deal if it's where you want to go. Find your travel deal here.
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
While we await the official announcement by Barack Obama of his chosen running mate, I wonder whether the foreign policy developments of the past ten days have forced his hand. Today a new poll shows John McCain leading Obama nationally by five percentage points. That's a stunning turnaround for McCain.
Why the improvement in McCain's numbers? Well, maybe his longer resume, military credentials and life experience matter to many independent and previously undecided voters.
No one foresaw Russia's invasion of Georgia. Many people had thought Vladimir Putin was at least a "reasonable" Russian/Soviet leader, if there is really such a thing.
In any case, I wonder whether now Obama has only one choice for VP, that being Delaware Senator Joe Biden. Biden, who chairs the crucial Foreign Relations Committee, has thirty-six years in the Senate. He may be about to become the "Dick Cheney" of the Democratic Party,
I say that not because Biden and Cheney share a similar world view. They don't. But what they hold in common is deep Washington and foreign-policy experience, and each has begrudging respect from the other side of the political aisle. Cheney was brought in to shore up George W. Bush's perceived lack of experience, and he made people feel more comfortable with the top of the ticket. Obama has similar problems, and his picking Sen. Evan Bayh or Gov. Tim Kaine at this point won't ease the concerns of the voters.
As CBS political analyst Jeff Greenfield recently noted, Obama is looking for a "graybeard," a respected party elder with a resume. Today, filmmaker Michael Moore suggested Obama pick Caroline Kennedy Schlossberg, daughter of the late President. Is he crazy? Obama needs a Darth Vader more than he needs a Camelot!
Oddly, Vladimir Putin may have forced Obama's hand in this decision. Suddenly John McCain's steely-eyed temperament looks more reassuring than Obama's willingness to negotiate with wayward foreign leaders. We'll see how voters judge this moment.
It's what I call "the politics of unforeseen events." Things no one is expecting can turn the landscape 180 degrees in politics, and this is one of those times. Two weeks ago, Evan Bayh might have been a shoe-in for the VP sweepstakes. Today Joe Biden looks like the all-but-certain pick.
The announcement could come at any moment. Check in often at www.MarkCurtisMedia.blogspot.com. And remember! The all new blog is coming soon, as I get ready to hit the road to both political conventions.
It's only a deal if it's where you want to go. Find your travel deal here.
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
Saturday, August 16, 2008
(San Ramon, California)
Political observers are calling the California 11th one of the closest Congressional races in the nation. Last week I interviewed incumbent Rep. Jerry McNerney. This week we caught up with Republican challenger Dean Andal. The topic of our first "blog video debate" was the nation's energy policy. Click below for Dean Andal's response to McNerney's video last week:
Dean Andal is a former member of the California Assembly. The respected Rothenberg Political Report currently rates this race as "Toss Up - Tilts Democrat."
I will be attending both political conventions beginning next Sunday, August 24, in Denver. To coincide with that, the all-new "Mark Curtis Media" political blog is coming soon. Keep checking back at www.MarkCurtisMedia.blogspot.com.
Friday, August 15, 2008
In politics it's always interesting to speculate, especially on "what might have been." There has been a lot of chatter this past week about whether John Edwards and his affair might have cost Hillary Clinton the nomination.
The theory works like this: Had the press reported the suspected affair (and it now appears some mainstream news outlets knew about it), then Edwards would have been forced to drop out, even before the Iowa caucuses. The theory further postulates that Clinton would have picked up most of Edwards's supporters, launching her past Obama.
My analysis of this consists of yes; no; and maybe.
YES: Obama was clearly the most liberal of the three candidates, with Edwards and Clinton operating more to his right. In addition, Clinton could have picked up on Edwards's appeal to rural and white Southern voters, a constituency she did well with in later primaries. But would it have helped her in Iowa?
NO: Some are making the assumption that white voters who backed Edwards would have simply shifted over to Clinton because she is white. This is a bad assumption and - quite honestly - not very deep political analysis. To assume everything is race-based is a mistake. After all, Obama won Iowa, a state that is 97 percent white.
You also have to look at a candidate's negatives. Some people were turned off by Hillary simply because of "Clinton fatigue." Her husband had his eight years, and now it was time to move on to someone else in the party. Obama was the candidate of "change," a word that really resonated. Edwards also ran as a Washington outsider who was going to shake things up. Had Edward dropped out early, it's plausible a lot of those "change" voters would have gone to Obama, not Clinton, especially those voters under 30.
MAYBE: Still, I am realist. Iowa was NOT a landslide by any means. The final count was: Obama 37.6 percent; Edwards 29.7 percent; and Clinton 29.5 percent. Remove Edwards, and Hillary would have finished a much closer second at the very least. She was an upset winner in New Hampshire, and that gave her candidacy more life and momentum. Had she won both Iowa and New Hampshire, her campaign would have had that air of inevitability that she so badly wanted. That momentum might have caused a better result for her on Super Tuesday, sealing the deal.
The problem is, we'll never know. We spend a lot of time speculating in politics. If only there weren't voting irregularities in Illinois in 1960, Nixon would have won; if only Ross Perot didn't run in 1992, Bush Sr. would have been re-elected; if only Ralph Nader hadn't run in 2000, Al Gore might be President today. The list could go on.
My point is, what's done is done. There aren't any "do overs" in politics (and indeed in most of life). We are simply left to wonder.
My "all new" blog is coming soon! Keep checking in for details at www.MarkCurtisMedia.blogspot.com.
Monday, August 11, 2008
They are hungry, and they are hunting us down at every twist and turn in this campaign. No, I am not talking about the voracious appetites of Bill Clinton and Newt Gingrich. I 'm talking about the "New Media!"
Last night I received an email from Barack Obama's campaign. The promise: If I sign up for an email alert or a text message alert, then I will be among the first to be notified by text when he picks his VP running mate. Supposedly, I and a few of his closest thousands of friends will be the first to know, even before the mainstream media. Of course this "exclusive" to my cell phone should last all of ten seconds, because every reporter in the nation is being invited to sign up.
If you want to sign up, just dial 62262 from your cell phone and text the message: "VP." (Standard text rates apply.)
Sure, it's a clever gimmick; but it is generating buzz. It was all over CNN today; and when I spoke to the Danville Rotary Club today, people were asking about it. So while the big, "old media" dinosaurs keep eating dandelions next to the freeway, the "new media" race cars are speeding past, down the freeway. The future is now, on the Internet, and the Obama campaign has been way out in front of everyone else. UC Berkeley has launched the Center for New Media, and millions in donations are pouring in from people like my friend Craig Newmark, founder of Craigslist (www.craigslist.org). I took a graduate course there last summer, and it was VERY eye-opening. The old world of newspapers, radio and TV will either have to adapt or fade away.
Speaking of new media, the "all new" Mark Curtis political blog is coming your way soon, just in time for the political conventions. Watch for updates at www.MarkCurtisMedia.blogspot.com.
Saturday, August 9, 2008
The 11th District Congressional seat from California is considered by many political watches as one of the most competitive in the country. A few weeks ago, I spoke with Republican challenger Dean Andal. Today I caught up with first term Democrat Rep. Jerry McNerney at "meet and greet" with voters outside the Lowe's store in Dublin, California.
Congressman McNerney gave his views on energy policy and the election. CLICK ON TODAY's VIDEO INTERVIEW:
We'll keep an eye on this race, and in the coming weeks talk again with former State Assemblyman Dean Andal about his chances. Right now the well-respected "Rothenberg Political Report" rates this race as "Toss Up - Tilts Democrat."
The "all-new" Mark Curtis political blog is coming soon, with more videos and interview segments, as I get ready for the political conventions in Denver and St. Paul. The future of journalism is NOW on the Internet. Check in often at www.MarkCurtisMedia.blogspot.com.
Friday, August 8, 2008
I was a subscriber to "Rolling Stone" magazine for 20 years, and always enjoyed the "Random Notes" column, which was just a hodge-podge of notes and brief items from the music world, instead of being a full-fledged article. There was lots of amusing stuff.
Some days I have dozens of thoughts on politics, but none that gels into a column. Still, I've got to write something! So, with that in mind, here are today's "Random Thoughts" on politics 2008, which I hope will be a semi-regular feature here:
-So John Edwards had an affair. He wasn't going to be the VP running mate anyway (because he can't carry North Carolina), but he had a decent shot at Attorney General. Now, that's gone too.
-Media outlets are making a big deal out of the fact that Bill Clinton will address the convention Wednesday night. Are they seriously surprised? The big story would have been leaving him off the agenda. You've got to be kidding! Love 'em or hate 'em, he's been the face of the Democratic Party for 16 years.
-Paris Hilton is now making fun of John McCain by calling him a "wrinkly, white-haired guy." Better check your family history, Paris. If it wasn't for a "wrinkly old man" named Conrad Hilton, you'd be a poor zero, instead of a rich zero.
-Barack Obama is grossly underestimating the female backlash against his campaign. Pick Hillary for VP, Senator, or you might "tank" worse than Dukakis in the tank.
-Love him or hate him, George W. Bush is the only modern U.S. President to face down radical Islam. Sorry, presidential fans of both parties; but Clinton, Bush Sr., Reagan, Carter and Ford all failed on that account. The outcome may not really be known for another decade.
-The latest "hot" rumor for VP on the GOP side is former House Speaker Newt Gingrich. Don't bet the mortgage on it. (See Edwards item above.)
-I doubt it will work, but I give Barack Obama a lot of credit for seriously considering Sen. Evan Bayh (D-IN) as his running mate. It used to be "conventional wisdom" that you don't pick someone from a neighboring state, but Bill Clinton and Al Gore blew that theory away in 1992.
Anyway, more of these nuggets to come, before, during and after the conventions!
I will be on the ground in Denver for the DNC on August 24, followed by the RNC in St. Paul, on August 31. Check in often at www.MarkCurtisMedia.blogspot.com.