McCain/Palin Edges Out Obama/Biden

A Zogby poll indicates that Americans are excited about the addition of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin to the Republican ticket. Zogby calls the race “a dead heat” but McCain has a very slight advantage as of today: 47%, compared to 45% for Obama.

Speaking as one of the newly interested Americans, I’m gratified that some color has finally been infused into this race. Until Sarah Palin was chosen for VP, I didn’t think this was a serious race at all. Obama doesn’t talk about Iraq or terrorism. All John McCain wants to talk about is compromise and getting along with people like Obama. Finally, somebody has talked about Iraq, and the oil and gas industry and solving tough problems. I can’t relate to John McCain. But Sarah Palin? I can relate.

It will be interesting to watch how this race plays out. After an exceptionally dull primary season, I’m gratified to see Mccain has stepped up his game.

Cox, Balls, & Naked Shorts

Oh my god.

Just Because

Journalistic Silence

I became interested in how the media shaped the story when I began to notice that news reports often left out exonerating details of Enron stories. After that, I had to wonder what else was going on that the media didn’t report or chose to over-report. Today, while sifting through the 400 pages of Caylee Anthony documents, I was shocked that I hadn’t read anywhere that George Anthony had been cheating on Cindy Anthony. The allegation was uttered by Casey Anthony’s boyfriend, Anthony Lazzaro. He says that Casey said she “hated” her father, and that her father had been unfaithful to her mother.

Why hadn’t I heard that in any of the reports that have crossed my browser? To my mind its not especially favorable to anyone – but it is rather salacious, which means it would have fit inside the frame of this story quite well. So why the silence?

This isn’t about the Caylee Anthony case specifically, or even the Enron case. It’s about how those with the loudest voices get to write history, even when its wrong.

Anadarko Buys Back Shares For $5Billion

Anadarko Petroleum Corp. has authorized a share repurchase program of up to $5 billion. At the current trading price, this amount represents roughly 18% of the company’s outstanding common shares.

Share repurchases will be funded with free cash flow generated by the company’s operations. Anadarko intends to repurchase nearly $600 million worth of shares prior to year-end 2008. The authorization extends through August 2011 and replaces prior programs.

“Our company’s substantial net asset value is not reflected in our stock price. The share repurchase program capitalizes on this opportunity to materially benefit our shareholders,” Anadarko chairman and CEO Jim Hackett said.

“In addition, we anticipate increasing capital expenditures in 2009 and beyond to accelerate the value of our substantial unbooked resource potential. Our capital-efficient portfolio is generating material free cash flow at current prices, enabling us to both increase our capital spending levels and complete the share repurchases over the next three years – all while targeting a debt-to-cap ratio of between 25% and 35%.

Overall, Hackett said the company is approaching 600,000 boe/d of net production and expects third-quarter production to be above 51 to 54 MMboe.

The company anticipates increasing its capital program through organic growth by: building upon exploration at the Jubilee field offshore Ghana and Tonga West in the Gulf of Mexico; increasing development activities onshore in the US; and capitalizing upon expanding exploration opportunities in West Africa, Brazil, and the US onshore.

More Drama In The Caylee Case

This morning Casey Anthony was arrested and taken in handcuffs from her parents’ Orlando home back to jail while protesters and onlookers waved “Baby killer” signs. According to a new arrest affidavit, Anthony allegedly wrote about $700 worth of checks that had been stolen. From Orlando’s Channel Six:

Detectives said they have Anthony on surveillance video using the stolen checks belonging to a friend at a Target store and a Bank of America.

Local 6 has also learned there could be more charges to come for Casey Anthony.

In a recently released report, Casey Anthony allegedly used a routing number off a birthday check her grandmother gave her.

But that’s not the end of the bizarre behavior of Casey Anthony.

Earlier Friday, Local 6 News exclusively obtained e-mails from Casey Anthony that she sent to a 12-year-old girl she befriended since being bailed out of jail.

The e-mails, letters and a bracelet were sent to Dakota Skii, a St. Cloud Middle School student, who helped organize a vigil in St. Cloud earlier this month for Caylee Anthony, who has been missing since mid-June.

“I can’t imagine what they’re going through, and I just want to help them get through this,” Skii said at the vigil.

Skii, who believes Caylee is still alive, was hospitalized with a severe stress-related medical issue after hearing that sources recently said DNA results and air sample tests from Casey Anthony’s car suggest that Caylee is likely dead, Skii’s grandmother, Lois Peter, told Local 6 News.

Peter contacted Local 6 News about the relationship and has since informed law enforcement, saying she hopes the Anthonys do not feel betrayed and that she wants the “madness” to end.

Peter said she called Casey Anthony’s mother, Cindy Anthony, after Skii was hospitalized to inform her of the situation.

“I heard Casey in the background, and she was crying. I was like, ‘Yeah, Casey. Just tell us what happened to Caylee,'” said Peter, who believes that Caylee may have died accidentally.

Casey Anthony sent Skii an e-mail on Thursday night, saying, “If you need anything, I’ll do anything I can, and more.”

Skii also received a bracelet with the words “my friend, my sister” from Casey Anthony.

A hand-written note sent to Skii from Casey Anthony said:

“Hey Sweetie! I can’t thank you enough for everything you have done for my family. I am really looking forward to seeing you. We will schedule something very soon, I promise. I would love to have you spend the night, and spend time getting to know each other. You are such an amazing girl and already a true friend. We are so blessed to have you and your Mom in our lives. I love you. Thank you for my gift (a stuffed animal), I named him after you. I will see you soon. Love, Casey”

This is just very odd. Twenty-two year old women do not normally befriend twelve year olds. And… spend the night? That’s deep in Michael Jackson territory. But nothing surprises me anymore when it comes to Casey Anthony.

Casey Anthony was charged with child neglect and filing a false statement in mid-July, about a month after she said she last saw her daughter, Caylee. An ankle bracelet is currently monitoring her on home confinement at her parents’ house after she was bailed out of the Orange County Jail last week.

Also on Friday, Casey Anthony’s father, George Anthony, tossed two chairs and other items and threatened to call authorities after two men were sitting outside his home between the sidewalk and the street.

“Get off my property. This is my property and this is my property,” said George Anthony while pointing to his yard and the grass between the sidewalk and street.

A neighbor intervened, holding George Anthony back from the two men, who said they were at the house to take pictures and try to see Casey Anthony.

“I don’t care how big you are or how small you are,” George Anthony said before placing his hand under the arm of one of the men and pushing him back. “Next time I see you or anyone else on my property, I will file charges.”

“I think (Casey Anthony) needs to be re-arrested, and I hope that happens. I want to be here when that happens,” the man who was pushed said.

“The person who was in the back of my daughter’s car was not my granddaughter,” George Anthony yelled.

Shortly after the incident, two Orange County sheriff’s deputies arrived at the house to serve criminal witness subpoenas to George and Cindy Anthony and their son, Lee Anthony.

“It’s the trial period that was set for the criminal case,” a deputy said. “They’re from Nov. 17 through Nov. 28. These came from the State Attorney’s Office this morning. It’s to put them on standby for the trial for a two-week period.”

Threats of violence against Casey Anthony and her family have escalated after DNA results indicated the child is likely dead and a decomposing body was in the woman’s trunk.

“(Callers are saying) kill the (expletive), burn the (expletive) and fry the (expletive),” the bounty hunter who helped free Casey Anthony, Leonard Padilla, said.

The threats have become so frequent and so violent that Padilla said Casey Anthony and her family are no longer safe and are easy targets for people who could harm them.

“Most of (the callers) are nuts,” Padilla said. “They are abusive and they are probably out of their minds but you can’t pass up the fact that somebody might just do something stupid. Something has to be done and the safety issue is paramount to us.”

A group of people were waiting outside Anthony’s parents’ home for a chance to confront the family about missing Caylee Anthony.

“(Casey Anthony) does not deserve the air she breathes,” resident Denise Payton yelled outside the Anthony home. “And her parents, I don’t know how they live with themselves.”

“They are disgusting people,” resident Tamara Silva said. “Anybody with any kind of sense whatsoever knows they are hiding whatever and they know,” Silva said. “I knew from day 1 that baby was not alive.”

Padilla had said he is throwing Anthony back in jail and revoking her bond for her safety and his peace of mind.

Padilla had said he wants to get Anthony back behind bars now that there is talk that protestors may be planning a demonstration against her.

Drone May Be Used In Search

Searchers claiming to have better location technology than most police departments, including drone planes and sonar, will launch a massive search for missing Caylee Anthony over the weekend.

Caylee has been missing since mid-June and her mother, Casey, was arrested on charges of child neglect and filing a false statement in mid-July, about 31 days after she said she had last seen Caylee.

The group of volunteers from Texas is in Orlando planning the high-tech search for the child.

One of the people scheduled to be involved in the Equusearch effort will be the mother of missing student Natalie Holloway. Holloway vanished in Aruba in 2005.

Equusearch founder, Tim Miller, said his group has helped with a lot of major missing person’s cases, including the Elizabeth Smart case.

Miller said he hopes to find Caylee alive.

“My own daughter disappeared when she was 16 years old,” Miller said. “The police said she was a runaway and I knew she wasn’t. And 17 months later her body was found two miles from my house.”

Besides Sonar and drone airplanes, the group also could use ground-penetrating radar in the search.

The effort begins Saturday.

Yech. The more I learn about this case, the more I begin to believe that genuine evil exists.

In Praise of Palin

I spoke too soon about refusing to vote this election.

I will vote for Sarah Palin. I’m completely fed up with John McCain, but he chose a running mate that I would trust to be president. She’s pro-life (obviously – five children!), she’s pro-business, and she screams authenticity. Until today she’s never even crossed into my radar – which I think is a good thing. Maybe the best thing, since it implies she’s not an attention whore begging for votes and adulation. She looks positively unstudied. She’s natural, beautiful, tough. I haven’t seen that kind of natural-ness ever. Hillary was positively straining against her reins the whole time she’s been in the public eye. Obama is a moron. Even John McCain is a boring idiot. But Palin? I’d vote for her for president, but I’ll have to settle for electing her to vice president for now.

I think this is the first positive thing John McCain has done since he announced his candidacy.

Caylee's Hair Found In Trunk, Mom Goes Back To Jail

CNN reported an update to horrific Caylee Anthony case this morning. A hair found in the trunk has been identified as three year old Caylee Anthony’s.

Additionally, Jose Padilla, the celebrity bounty hunter who put up Casey Anthony’s bond, is revoking her bond. “I am not Britney Spears,” Mr. Padilla said, and indicated that he and his employees were being stalked and threatened by media coverage. “She is going back to jail on Saturday,” he said.

It would appear that the case is finally gaining some momentum, though I think we all know where it will end.

Damn It Feels Good To Be A Banker

Click, right now. No excuses. You can thank me later.

What Economists Say About A US Recession

The Guardian has a roundup of economists espousing their opinions about the possibility of a US recession. In general, every economist said we’re fine. Particularly interesting was my favorite Marc Pado of Cantor Fitzgerald:

“I think this bodes well. GDP continues to build the bull case that we’ve been too pessimistic and the outlook for the fourth quarter has been played down so much that if gasoline prices at the pump stay below $4 a gallon, you build the case for a big, positive upside surprise.”

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