Final nail in the coffin 

Gen. Colin Powell’s historic endorsement of Barack Obama on Sunday may have been the final nail in the coffin of the campaign of John McCain, a good and honorable man who ended up being the wrong man in the wrong place at the wrong time.

There is almost a Shakespearian aspect of the heroic general, betrayed by his commander, who makes a dramatic last-minute move to ensure the defeat of his former ally. It was a gutsy move almost without precedent in recent history.

It takes the experience question off the table. It legitimizes Obama as a candidate with strong foreign policy credentials. And it makes John McCain’s choice of Sarah Palin even more laughable.

Right now, just about the only way McCain can still win is if President Bush calls up his buddy Osama bin Laden and has him launch a terrorist attack in southern Florida or in midtown Cleveland. But Bush has run out of both time and favors and McCain is running out of options.

But by no means is this race over. Obama himself said last week that we should never underestimate the ability of Democrats to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. And we must remember the lessons of 2000 and 2004: Never underestimate the ability of Republicans to use vote fraud to turn around a close election.

It isn’t the time to become complacent. It is, however, the time to utilize the early-voting law and cast your vote. The clerk’s office at the City-County Building is accepting early votes Mondays-Fridays, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. And on Thursday, early-vote precincts will open at the J. Everett Light Career Center at North Central High School and the Southport Community Center. Their hours will be 11 a.m.-7 p.m., seven days a week.

The more votes we have in the bank before Election Day, the harder it will be to alter the vote totals on election night. Voting early frees you up to help others get to the polls on Election Day as well.

For all the bellyaching by conservatives about how Obama pals around with terrorists, and how the so-called “liberal media” is in the tank for Obama, let’s expose these lies for the cynical misstatements they are.

The media is in the tank for Obama. Except, that is, for the highest-rated cable news network, Fox News; the highest-rated radio show, Rush Limbaugh; a plurality of Internet blogs; and hundreds and hundreds of daily newspapers.

Go on any Web site and check out the comments posted by readers at the end of any story, including this column. What you’ll see are hate-filled comments by conservatives, thousands of them on the larger news sites, about Obama.

I’ve always suspected the reason for this, the reason that Rush Limbaugh draws such a large audience and that Web sites get spammed with endless conservative posts, is quite simple. Many conservatives, the ones who complain about lazy foreigners, actually don’t have jobs and are therefore at home listening to the radio between noon and 3 p.m., when Rush is on the air.

And they apparently have nothing better to do with their time than to sit on the Internet all day, every day, absorbing conservative propaganda and posting comment after comment on

Liberals have jobs, sometimes two or three of them. They don’t have time to listen to talk radio for hours at a time. They correctly believe it’s a waste of their time to post comments on the Internet that few people will ever read.

There is no such thing as the “liberal media.” Most newspapers and television stations are owned by the same three or four companies. The era of the family-run newspaper is over. NUVO and The Indianapolis Recorder are the only major family-run newspapers in this city.

If not for the Mays and McKinney families, who operate The Recorder and NUVO, respectively, there would be no mom-and-pop media outlets in the city. Everything else is run with an iron fist by out-of-towners.

As far as Ayers goes, there’s only one candidate with close ties to a convicted felon who’s admitted to election fraud, planning political assassinations, firebombing and kidnappings.

That would be John McCain, whose ties to the domestic terrorist G. Gordon Liddy are extensive and well-documented. Liddy was a mastermind of the Watergate scandal and planned to murder prominent journalists who opposed his master, President Nixon.

Liddy also encouraged his radio listeners to kill ATF agents in the 1990s.

Your choice in this election is clear. Please vote early. And don’t believe the conservative media. This is our chance to shut them up and to get this country moving again.

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