Wednesday, October 22, 2008


I swear I'll actually post substantively about music again, but it may take until November 5. Everyone I know is on edge and worried about a range of possibilities. I can't get any reading done, and a friend reports that she is also not finishing many books these days. Daniel Wolf blogged the other day that he is having trouble composing, and he, like me, attributes this to election nerves. I have a chorus rehearsal from 7:30 to 10 p.m. on Tuesday, November 4, and last night I told the president of the board that I was good for $100 for renting a rehearsal space if we could move the rehearsal to some other day that week.

Meanwhile, over at electoral-vote.com, the Votemaster (in reality a famous computer scientist who somehow is not a colleague of mine), has a report on the dollar cost of Sarah Palin:
Politico went through the financial report the RNC just filed with the FEC and discovered that the Republican National Committee has spent $150,000 for clothes and accessories for Sarah Palin since she was tapped for the VP slot in late August. One shopping trip to Neiman Marcus cost them $75,062.63, for example. They also spent over $4700 on her hair and makeup. Remember how the Republicans howled at John Edwards $400 haircut (which included a house call by the barber)? Google for: Edwards "$400 haircut" and you'll get 27,000 hits. That was major news for a week. That aside, a far more damaging effect of this revelation is that Palin keeps saying she is just an ordinary small-town hockey mom. It is likely that if Joe-the-plumber's wife were to rack up $150,000 in clothing expenses in a single month, Joe might ask how she was planning to pay the credit card bill since the median annual salary for plumbers is $37,514. Palin is already being ridiculed all over the place, and this provides more fodder for the comics.
One hundred fifty thousand dollars? Seventy-five thousand at Neiman-Marcus alone? That's the downpayment on a house, or the house itself, in most parts of the country. It could clothe me for 50 years or so; it's a rare year when I spend as much as a grand on clothing and shoes. Yeah, I'd spend more if I worked anywhere other than the software business, but still.

More seriously, he points to political analyst Charlie Cook, who sees signs pointing to an Obama win. The Votemaster also notes that McCain appears to be having a bad effect on downticket Republicans.


MFRML said...

"I swear I'll actually post substantively about music again, but it may take until November 5."

Thanks for letting us know. I'll save my bandwidth and time until then reading other websites. No hard feelings, mind you -- this is your blog, write whatever you want.

P.S. In an attempt to interject at least a little musical discussion, check out this very cool and impressive website:


Lisa Hirsch said...

If you're reading via RSS or live bookmarks, you can usually tell in advance what the subject matter is!

Paul H. Muller said...

I think Obama is a lock. Maybe by a landslide.

The Republicans are self-destructing along with the economy.

So worry about how Obama will deal with the financial crisis - not if he is going to be elected.

Lisa Hirsch said...

Based on all the polls and analysis I've seen, and on the apparent desperation of the McCain campaign (Pennsylvania??), yes, an Obama win seems likely, but I am in the "not over until it's over" gang. You never know what might happen.

Anonymous said...

Come to think of it, I could use an excuse to be otherwise occupied from 7.30 to 10 on election night. Instead of waiting for the news to ... slowly ... trickle ... in ... I could get it all in a heap.

True, Sarah's clothing bill could clothe you for 50 years, but you're not running for national office. The reason Edwards got that expensive haircut is that he'd never have heard the end of the media ridicule if he'd appeared with a strand out of place. (For an example of what happens to a major politician who doesn't care about grooming, see the sad story of the former British opposition leader Michael Foot.)

So while the vast sum of Palin's bill may be a scandal, and the source of the money may be an ethics scandal, and the Republican hypocrisy over such things is definitely a scandal, that she spent a lot more money on clothes than ever before is only sensible in her position.

Lisa Hirsch said...

> an excuse to be otherwise occupied.

Want to join my chorus? Though closer to your home, Cal Bach has auditions on Nov. 1. Of course they do not rehearse Tuesday nights, when their director is leading my chorus.

I could run for national office on 10 $500 suits, and so could Sarah Palin. Did you catch the $20,000 for makeup artists? In one month?

Elaine Fine said...

I hear you Lisa! It is encouraging to read items in the news about the price of Palin's clothes, or her claims that she is an intellectual, or even the fog that I see forming when she tries to project the five-chid picture of her family (do you think that she'll actually get away with it?), but I don't think that many of us composer-types will have the peace of mind to think creatively and constructively until after November 4. I'm hoping for a landslide because I fear the possibility of RNC claims of voter fraud.

I would like to trust in the goodness of my fellow countryfolk to open their eyes and do the right thing.

Lisa Hirsch said...

Yes, the news about her wardrobe is...well, not the kind of publicity she wants.

Me, too, on the landslide, because I also fear claims of fraud or some kind of repeat of 2000.

Anonymous said...

[test, because the comment link to the next post is busted]

Lisa Hirsch said...

Weird - I don't know what's up with the next posting.